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#260: All About Membership Sites: Your Top 10 Burning Questions with Stu McLaren Email

By Amy Porterfield

So many of you have asked me questions about setting up a membership site so you could serve your audience in a bigger and deeper way. Well, I thought I better bring in someone who knows membership sites in and out, and directly ask him your burning questions, all about membership sites. I like to call Stu McLaren the Membership Man. He is, hands down, the go-to source for all things membership.      In 2008, Stu knew something had to give. He was burning the candle at both ends providing one-on-one services to clients. While his business would be seen as successful by most because the money was there, he was trading time for dollars and this was not the answer to where he saw his future. Especially one with kids in it, like he and his wife were hoping for.    Long story short, Stu decided he needed a new business model to take what he was already doing and share it in a more leveraged way -- a model that included recurring revenue. Upon the suggestion from a friend and business mentor, he started a membership site. Not only did he create a membership site for himself, but he saw a need for a tool for implementing a membership site, so he set out and created one. Throughout his time working with the 70,000 clients who flocked to use WishList Member, the membership software platform Stu created, he learned a lot about what worked and what didn’t when it came to creating a membership site and he joined me on my podcast today to share all of that wisdom. Here’s a snapshot of what we covered in our chat where I asked him the 10 most burning questions that you, my listener, asked: We covered… The difference between a membership site and a course What kind of content you need to have inside your course How to manage the content creation process Pricing your membership site Launch strategies and options for membership sites Having your course as a prerequisite for you membership site Launching with webinars Incentivizing members to join Bottom line, almost any business can benefit from having some type of membership site. And it doesn’t have to be a lot of work to invite members in, or to create content every month. The beauty of a membership site is that you get to leverage your knowledge with the content you provide and the recurring revenue that a membership will bring to your business.   Here are some of the highlights from this episode: [8:23] Question #1…  the main difference between a membership site and a course [22:04] The Four Primary Pieces of Content you need for your membership site every month [26:40] You Don’t Have to Do It Alone - What Inspired John Gallagher, founder of HerbMentor to facilitate a tribe of experts. The content does not have to fall on your shoulders. [28:39] How to decide what content to release and when to your new members (and how to simplify) [31:49] Pricing your membership site and the important distinctions between offering membership first or your course first [37:09] What you MUST know about pricing your membership site [40:22] Open or closed launching, and how Jennifer Allwood scaled her membership site from 700 members in three years to 1,200 new members in 5 DAYS [47:12] The secret to the ONE and only ad that made Stu buy (and how you can apply it to your membership site) [51:37] How Nicholas Wilton recruited 180 members from a single webinar before he had even created his membership site [57:48] Paint Store Owners, Fitness Experts, Dog Trainers, and other surprising examples of membership site founders [1:00] The misconceptions you don’t need to buy into Stu brought so many great insights ton how to make a membership site work for you. This was truly one of my favorite episodes of the podcast. And there’s so much more where that came from! If you’re wondering whether a membership site can work for you, or wanting to know how to grow your existing site, I highly encourage you to join Stu’s free workshop by visiting amyporterfield.com/stu. Join us both and listen to the episode now! This episode is brought to you by Tribe. Join the free TRIBE Workshop today and learn how to Turn What You Already Know, Love, And Do Into A Successful Membership Business. Subscribe & Review in iTunes Are you subscribed to my podcast? If you’re not, I want to encourage you to do that today. I don’t want you to miss an episode. I’m adding a bunch of bonus episodes to the mix and if you’re not subscribed there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes! Now if you’re feeling extra loving, I’d be really grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find my podcast and they’re also fun for me to go in an read. Just click here to review, select “Ratings and Reviews” and “Write a Review” and let me know what your favorite part of the podcast is. Thank you!

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