4 Membership Site MythsLance Tamashiro
For the last couple of days we’ve been having a discussion about memberships sites.
We’ve been having a discussion about what you need to actually build a membership site, how to build content, how to technically overcome some of the barriers that a lot of you are having producing your membership sites.
I don’t blog very often, but I felt that this was a needed conversation. What I see happening in the marketplace is a lot of the “gurus” are basically telling you things about memberships when
a) they might not even have very many of their own
b) I really feel like they’re doing a lot of the “teaching” that they’re doing with ulterior motives.
So, what I want to do today is have a discussion with you based on the feedback that you’ve given me.
I heard a lot of common themes, and I want to squash the problems that you guys perceived that you’re having with creating your own memberships sites – because as we all know, most of us came online in order to earn a passive, recurring income and that obviously translates into a membership site, but what happens is that we find ourselves working even more than we did at a lower hourly rate than we did at our day jobs and you’re never going to get ahead that way.
I want to discuss with you today are the “membership site myths” that your favorite “guru” wants you to believe.
I want to start off with a very basic warning, and the warning is this – that this blog post is only for people who want the absolute truth.
If you follow me at all, if you read my emails, if you read my blog posts, you know that I’m not one to sugarcoat things, and when I see a problem in the marketplace, I like to talk about it.
So, why do you want a membership site anyway?
The reason why I wanted a membership site and based on the feedback that you’ve given me is that you wanted to work less, you want to earn more, and basically you want to enjoy life.
Just to give you a real quick example, my partner, Robert Plank and I, currently have over 20 membership sites up and running. Yes, that’s 20 that we’ve created in less than a year, there’s probably even more than that at this point now, but these membership sites bring us in over $20,000 per month passively. And when I say passively, we maybe put 30 minutes to 60 minutes per month of work into it. So, not a bad trade-off. If you ask me, it’s a great hourly rate, and one of the things that it lets us do is enjoy life.
So, just recently, we happened to be at a conference in Las Vegas and we were having a discussion, and Robert says to me,
“Hey Lance, it’s your birthday. I want to take you, your wife, your child, Grace, who is a very cute little girl, I might add, and his girlfriend, Sarah – to Hawaii.”
So, that night we got on the internet, he booked us first class tickets to Hawaii, went there for about 5 days. In fact, we’re big LOST fans. So, he took us on this all-day tour of LOST.
While we did that, our money kept coming in and we didn’t do any work. No work whatsoever. We just relaxed, enjoyed, recuperated. And the reason we were able to do that is because we have the correct setups in membership site, and what we want to do is show you how to do that as well.
The cool thing about this, like I was saying, is it all happened on autopilot. We didn’t even answer emails, log in to the internet, nothing while we were way at Hawaii.
Myth #1 - Use Free Software
I’m seeing this more and more and more over the internet is that “Free software and free membership site setups are good.”
Let me just get this right out of the way.
The argument that these “gurus” are teaching is that you should start with a free setup solution because you can upgrade later.
But let me ask you a question, how many PLR or Resale Rights Products have you bought?
And of those, how many have you actually set up online?
How many sales pages have you said that you’re going to go back and edit and make better?
How many products have you created that you said you’re going to go back and update?
My guess is, if you’re anything like me, you’ve got lots of this stuff and the truth is you never went back and upgraded.
The Truth Is This NEVER Happens
We’re so bombarded with moving our businesses forward that we never go back to do any, to go back and “fix” anything. So, why not just get it right the first time?
Wouldn’t it be better to start with a solid foundation that you can grow with instead of trying to worry about the headache of how to change your whole system?
What they never tell you is that it’s next to impossible to migrate your setup. They tell you to put it on all of this free software, they tell you that you can go back at any time once you’ve started to build an income and you can migrate that over.
The truth is it’s near impossible to do that.
Also, what happens if you need support?
Do you really think that the author of a “free plugin” is going to be really worried about helping you if you have a problem with their software?
Personally, I would much rather go with a big company who has a staff that’s dedicated to answering my problems when I have one.
Myth #2 - “I’m Not An Expert”
I hear this over and over, and this was probably the biggest common theme that I heard from the emails that you guys have sent me.
“I’m not an expert. Who will listen to me? How do I get people to pay for the stuff that I want to know?”
"Who will pay for my information?"
Here's A Little Secret
This is actually an overwhelmed tactics that the “gurus” want you to believe.
Why would they want you to believe this?
Why would they want you to believe that you don’t have enough information to become an expert? That you don’t know enough in order to teach somebody else what it is that you know?
Well, it’s really simple. If they can keep making you believe that you’re not an expert, then you have to keep buying their products. Think about that for a minute. It makes absolute sense, and if you actually step back and think about the people that are telling you to set up memberships sites, that are telling you to find a niche, and then they’re telling you you don’t know enough, it’s a tactic that they want you to believe.
The truth is, is that the majority of people online are looking for facts, concise information. Can you find out everything about membership sites or everything about your niche online for free?
The answer, honestly is probably, but what people pay for is that consolidated, concise, no-fluff information.
I don’t care what niche you’re in, there is always a newbie or somebody that knows less than you that you can pass that information onto. For example, I got started in internet marketing as a list builder. Now, are there people out there that sell products everyday on how to build 10,000-person list? How to build 100,000-person list?
I couldn’t do that. What I did was I used my results.
What I learned how to do was build a list of 137 people, and I sold that product. That product sold like crazy.
Why? Because there were people who didn’t even know how to do what I knew how to do So, I could take them, and as I learned new things, I had continuing information to teach to them.
So, think about that for a minute. You are an expert to somebody and the truth is is that there’s many, many more beginners on the internet in every single niche than there are experts. There’s very few "experts".
So, if you feel like you know more than somebody about your hobby, your passion, your niche, as you should, then it’s very easy to market towards people who know less than you. And as they learn more, you are going to be learning more as well.
So, don’t think that you’re not an expert. Every single one of you, are and I’ve yet to meet any of the students that we have anywhere from $300 students to $1000 coaching clients that have come to us and not felt like they were an expert after our training – because the truth is it’s just a mindset shift. Once you understand what’s happening to you in the marketplace, it makes it very easy to see that you actually are an expert.
Myth #3 - “I Can't Generate Enough Content”
This one drives me absolutely crazy – because the biggest reason that people fail online with membership sites is because they think they have this one big idea.
They think they have this one membership site that is going to basically be their ticket out. So what do they do?
Well, they try to create years and years and years worth of content upfront before they even launch it, and this makes no sense to me.
So, let’s think about this for a minute. Why would you spend your time creating 4 months, 6 months, 1 year, 2 years worth of content when you don’t even have a subscriber yet?
Nobody is going to see that for 6 months, 2 years. So what Robert and I do is when we actually create membership sites, we’re always just staying one step ahead of our longest subscribers.
Re-Think Your Idea Of A Membership
First of all, I want you to think about a fixed-term membership site. Most of the membership sites that I run are what we call fixed-term, which means that it starts at one point and has a definite end point. If there is 6 months worth of content, they pay for 6 months, and at the end of 6 months, they have lifetime to access to all the updates, all the information, anything else that we might add/change along the way.
The point is you’ve now moved from something open-ended, which most people, let’s face it, are afraid of pain. If somebody told you you’re going to pay $47 for the rest of your life or you’re going to pay $47 every 2 weeks for the next 8 months, there’s a big difference in there. You can actually see the end, you can see what’s happening, and it’s a much easier sell that way.
The cool thing is, is you only have to be one step ahead of your longest subscriber.
Now, this is a huge mindset shift for you and what you’ve probably been taught about membership sites. I know it was for me because when I got started, I thought the same way – I needed a membership site that would last forever. The truth is, is that you don’t know if there’s a market for it, you don’t know if people are going to like your content.
If you create 2 years worth of stuff to go in your membership site, you won’t even know people are going to like the content that you’re creating and you don’t have time to course-correct. What we like to teach you to do is to actually just be 1 week, 2 weeks, maybe a month ahead of your earliest subscriber, so that
A) you’re not creating content that nobody’s going to like
B) you can course-correct as you go along.
So, if people need different information than you think because you’re going to get feedback, then you can adjust as you go
You also know where people are dropping off. So, you don’t end up with a bunch of empty content that you can't use.
So, can you create enough content? Yes, you can, as long as you can shift your mindset and think a little bit differently about your membership site.
Myth #4 - “I’m Not A Techie”
Basically, people think they don’t have the technical expertise in order to build a membership site. Again, this is something that your “guru” wants you to believe. Now, why would they want you to believe this? Very simple again – because they have a vested interested in you thinking that, so that you can buy their training, so that they can encourage you to stick with them and continue to buy their products.
All You Need To Know
You need to know how to set up a website, you need to know how to manage your members, you need to know how to handle payments. And by the way, most of the free solutions on the market don’t do all these, which actually means you spend your time working on these things rather than enjoying your life. This is why I personally believe the free models suck. It’s too much technical work.
In reality, all that you need to build a successful numerous number of membership sites is WordPress – that’s 100% free product that comes with almost all hosting accounts. If not, you can get it at wordpress.org. Super easy to install, you just click a button, and it’s all done for you.
You need Wishlist Member. Why do I like to promote wish list member and encourage you to use it?
A) it’s what I use for all of my sites
B) I know that they are a giant company, I know the owners of it, and I know that they have awesome technical support, and they’re always updating with the new versions of WordPress that are coming out and enhancing their features. By the way, you don’t get that with free solutions. They have a vested interest in beating things like WordPress upgrades to market.
The third thing that you need is a plugin that Robert Plank wrote, called WordPress drip. This is a little bit more expensive. It goes for $2,495.00 $47. (Click here to check out WPDrip )
However, if you’re a member of Membership Cube, then it comes for free along with your Wishlist Member license and all of the training that you need to get up and started right away.
The cool thing is just knowing these three pieces of software that you need, you can have your membership site up and running today. Literally today, you can have a membership site up and running, and spend your time marketing your site rather than spending your time trying to generate all of your content.
I want to thank you for taking a couple minutes out of your day to talk about these “membership site myths” with you. I hope that I’ve expanded your mind and helped you understand what actually happening in the marketplace.
I would really appreciate it if you go down to the bottom of the page right now, fill out a comment, let me know what your thoughts are.
Have a great day.