18 Buckets of Money: Memberships
For many people, once they launch a website, they do so thinking that “Ok, now the money will just come rolling in.” Depending
upon the business, they may just do very well. But, having spent the best part of the last 20 years working with websites, I can tell
you that more often than not, it takes a bit of time. Unfortunately, for many businesses (web or otherwise) the number one reason for
failure is under-capitalization. Thus, making money right off the bat serves the long term vision of the business best of all. Because I
wanted my customers to do well (and therefore be able to pay their bill), I looked for ways to create alternative revenue streams,
while the core business would grow in the time they needed. Over a period of time, I was able to discover eighteen of what became
known as the “Buckets of Money”. This is column nine in an eighteen column series… so with that said, on with the show.
Let’s raise the stakes a bit! We have been talking over the last eight columns about your website’s audience. Let’s now elevate some
of them into “Member” status. What is the difference? Well of course, since this series is about money, it means membership carries
with it a price tag. What that price tag is and how often it is paid, is up to you. But what you must keep in focus is that to charge any
amount, you must have additional benefit to expect people to pay that amount. Let’s look into some options:
- Premium Content – Look into having areas of your website, with content that not just anyone can get to. You may even set up this content to be “outbound” content, that only these “Members” get. This same content could be released to your entire audience at a future point, which makes the value in being a member being that you get that information sooner!
- Authorship – You could allow these “Members” to be able to share their words, images and other content with the rest of the audience. This can be done with the ability to create discussions, perhaps allow them to blog on your site, or even allow them the ability to become a regular column author. All for that price of membership!
If you are seeing a recurring theme develop over the last several columns, you are getting a sense of how I think. I am wanting you
to take some of these ideas, and flesh out more fully what you can do with your own site. Of course you can steal my ideas, after all
I most likely stole that same idea from someplace else… What is important is that you put your own unique spin on any idea you see
and run run run as far as you can!