We’re talking in this podcast about how to set up a WordPress site, how to charge people money either one time, high-ticket, low-ticket, recurring, fixed-term membership site, so that we have this thing called “passive income.”
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My website is membershipcube.com, and you can go there and claim a free copy. It’s included with our course, a free copy of a very excellent WordPress plug-in, a software tool called “WishList Member,” which you can use to control and basically have a gatekeeper in front of your site, so you can pile in a members area, pile members into your members area.
Whether you want to have 10,000 people who all pay you $10 or you want to have a hundred people who will pay you a thousand dollars, it doesn’t really matter, but what does matter is you do need to have an easy way to manage all of those members. For example, if someone joins your site, and then uses the videos, uses your content, comes back in a year, and they can’t get in, you don’t want to have to deal with that. There should be a way, and there is a way when you use this tool called “WordPress” where they can click on a link that says, “Did you lose your password?” Click on it, they get back in.
If someone buys from you, and they get access to this download area, this members area, you don’t necessarily want them to pass around your download link, or if they refund, then they should no longer have access to your download area, and all those things, that’s what a membership site gives you. Membership sites don’t have to be recurring. They can be just free or one single payment. Today, we’re going to talk about 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 ways that you can enhance any kind of membership site because… Okay, a couple quick things.
First of all, when you sell something, anything online, you need to sell something that is the solution to a problem. We have a course called “Podcast Crusher,” and what that solves is that people who don’t have a podcast online or they have one, but it’s not ranked, we show people how to rank their podcast in iTunes over time, over a period of a few months, so that’s the problem we’re solving. Your problem might be that they need to lose weight, that they need to learn how to trade in the stock market, whatever, but you need to solve a problem and not just pile them on with some ideas or some kind of tips.
There are some really cool things you can do to make your membership site really pop, really stand out, and it’s not necessarily from you having to put in hundreds of hours of work. This isn’t from you having to pile in hundreds of videos or anything like that. Let me just list this for you. The thing that you can add to your membership site very easily, very quickly within the next few days if not today are PDF transcripts, checklists, challenges, list of resources, collect addresses for bonuses, mail out physical DVDs, have a group or personal coaching call, and bundle some kind of software with your membership site. That last one is my favorite, so even if you’re in a niche where you might not think software is involved.
If you were in the hypnosis niche, there are these things called “binaural beats” where you can play through your headphones and things, these special tones that either wake you up, put you to sleep, get you focused, get you energized, relaxed, whatever. What if you had some kind of a membership site where the problem it was solving was it was just fixing all of their mind issues, right? If someone has anxiety, if someone is unmotivated, if someone is always tired, whatever their issue, they can join your site, and you have the core training. You have a series of 4 modules that get them past the usual stuff every once you’d get past.
But then, you have some kind of special software where after listening to each session, or even if they had completed the sessions and they come back a month later, they can listen to these different binaural tones every day. Maybe there’s even some kind of software where they can create their own custom, whatever you’d call it, tone, music, track just to solve whatever their particular problem is, or what if you had a hypnosis course and you created your own set of hypnosis audios to solve whatever particular problem where you took requests or you just made one once per week anyway, so you just add it into the members area.
You want to have these extra enhancements, and so the easy one right off the bat is a thing called a “transcript,” a PDF transcript, and we do this in all of our sites. I used to not do it, but ever since we started doing it, it really makes… It makes it easy… It’s one more extra easy way to sell the course. It’s one more extra way to justify people paying for something high-ticket, and there’s that certain percentage of people that learn best from video and another percentage that learn best from reading, or some people like… are more tactile, and they like to print things out, and mark them up, and highlight them.
What we do is we use a software tool called “Camtasia Recorder” to basically record PowerPoint videos, and then quit PowerPoint, and then do other things on the screen, and then we can dump out the audio, and then go to a transcriptionist and pay someone to go and type up all those things. Okay? Then, we take still frames out of our video, and then sandwich them into the word document that comes back, and then save it into PDF form. I use Microsoft Word for that, saves as PDF. Even if you don’t have Microsoft Word, Google Drive will allow you to paste in some text, put in some images, and then save it as PDF right then and there right in your web browser even with no software If you’re on a Mac, PC, Chromebook, whatever.
Really easy way to add value to your membership site, yet… First of all, have video. Demonstrate something on video in your training, and then go and get it transcribed, and then sandwich in still frames. Not a ton, but every few minutes, still frames of what you’re showing someone, so that technically, someone could not even watch a minute of video in your site. Technically, someone could just open up their PDF document on their laptop, tablet, or print it out, have it on their desk, and then they can just read it, and follow along, and still get the same information.
Now, speaking of different people absorbing things in different ways… Personally, I’m the kind of person where I don’t like to go back months later and re-watch videos. In many cases, I should because we forget things, and we don’t even realize what it is we forgot, so sticking with the podcasting example. Let’s say that somebody buys access to Podcast Crusher. They go through the course, they set up their podcast, but for whatever reason, they neglect it for a few months. It happens to a lot of people. Then, they want to go back, and they want to add in new episode into their podcast. They don’t want to have to watch 4 hours of video to get it all again, and this is where the checklist comes into play.
If you teach someone something that requires a few steps, so for example, podcasting. We tell people which exact headset to use to record audio. We tell them what tool to use to… or actually hit the “Record” button and record the audio. We tell them how to trim the edges of the audio, how to add in a theme song, how to put it online, how to tag it properly, and so there are… It’s not like a ton of steps, but there are few steps. If you haven’t done it in a few months, or if you’ve only done it once and then never again, then for sure, you’re going to miss those steps.
Even if all you have is at the end of every module, every session, what we recommend is you have about a 60 to 90-minute session in your membership course and have four of those. Have 4 milestones where someone is building up yet another piece of whatever it is they’re building. If they’re building a podcast, building… creating a rental property, whatever the niche is. Even if you just had a set of bullet points saying, “Well, I told you how to do this thing called a ‘podcast.’ Now, here are, just in very compressed form, the steps.”
I’m really glad that you listened to today’s podcast because we have a tool called “wpnotepad.com” that we include in that Membership Cube offer I talked to you about earlier. What’s great about WP Notepad is… Having a checklist and having bullet points, that’s great, but WP Notepad will actually allow you to have a set of checkboxes next to each little item. That’s really cool. Someone can go, and if you have 10 steps, 20 steps, I wouldn’t go any too much longer than that without breaking it up into sections, but they can check off on their browser the steps that they’ve taken.
What’s great about WP Notepad is this saves that person’s exact changes. For example, if I went into Podcast Crusher, and there were the 10 steps to follow to publish my latest podcast episode, and I checked off say five out of the ten, and then you went to Podcast Crusher, and you only checked off one, and we both came back a month later, then I would see the 5 boxes I checked off, the same exact ones that I personally checked off, and you would see the one box you checked off. You get it? What’s great about WP Notepad is that all the changes are personalized to the exact person.
WP Notepad has some other cool features and things like, for example, it allows you to add a note-taking area, so it almost looks like when you go to a blog and leave a comment, only the comments are yours. They’re private. You’re the only one who can see them, so that way, you can take your own personal notes. You don’t have to worry about scraps to paper. Having a checklist, super easy to do and super helpful for other people buying your course later because you don’t just want to have one single product launch, have a flash in the pan, and then you’re done. You want to create these streams of income where anyone can find you 5, 10 years later and still buy into that membership site you created all those years ago, and they’re still happy.
Next, similar to checklists, but at the end of all of our milestones sessions of our course, modules, we have a thing called a “challenge.” Okay? This is always in the video itself, and it’s always a slide, and then we have text below the video on the page in our members area, and you can see this by buying access to Membership Cube, and you’ll see exactly what a challenge is. A challenge, it contains 4 questions regarding the actions that a person is about to take after they’ve completed your training. We teach somebody how to make a podcast, and the questions in the challenge are, “What is the name of your podcast? How long will your first episode be? What is the title of that first episode, and then what time and date will that all be online?” We ask 4 really simple questions, right?
The point of this is definitely not for someone to go out and take some action to come back to answer this. This is just for someone just to commit, right? If someone doesn’t have time, they only have 2 minutes, that is the perfect length of time for them to answer our 4 quick questions because they don’t have to do anything yet. They just have to commit to it. We ask them 4 questions, and we keep them very, very easy questions. Usually, the first question is for them to name something, and then the last question is usually some kind of a deadline.
If you’re already stuck and you say, “Jeez, I don’t even know what the heck to ask someone for a challenge like if I’m teaching like weight loss, what the heck am I going to ask?” Let’s say that you had your first module about weight loss, and it was all about tracking their meals and throwing out the junk food in their house. Already, you can ask simple questions like, “What are 3 foods that you’re going to give up for the next 30 days?” That could be the first question, right?
The second question can be, “What are 3 items in your house you can throw away or at least put on the banned list to never buy at the grocery store again?” All right. That’s an easy one, and then a third question could be something like, “What new physical activity will you take like walking or jogging for just 10 minutes this week to change your lifestyle?” Then finally, number four will be, “What time and date will the junk food be thrown out of your house?”
Really simple. We end on just what time and date will that be done by. We begin on what’s something that you can name or list for us, and then whatever the middle two in between there. We might ask for something like a URL or you might ask them for a number like we say, “Well, will your first podcast episode be 5 minutes long or 20 minutes long?” The whole point is that we get them to commit to something.
Now, you can do this in one of 2 ways. You can do this using WP Notepad, and that’s actually the way we do it now. The way we do it now is they watch our video, they answer the questions in the challenge, and then they are the only ones who see their answers, except for me because as the administrator of the site, I can go in and look and see what people answered as their response. Don’t tell anybody, but the way we used to do it was we would have a comment box, and people would post their 4 items at the end of every module there, and this had an interesting effect.
It had an interesting effect because if we just… The reason why we switched is because we used to do a lot of live training. Now, many times, we’ll put out a course, and we’ll just put the video on there, just real quick, real simple, but when we did a lot of these live training courses, people were on a live webinar. We have a couple of hundred people on this live webinar at that very moment, and they would… They’d all be on there. If you have 200 people on, it was easy to get say 20, 25 people to commit their 4 answers. I’m hesitant to reveal that, but it is tough to get people to publicly post things, but if you can get 10%, 20% of your current members or your live attendees to fill on those questions, then that’s great.
This is also great because it only takes 2 minutes, so if they’re there anyway, they might as well do it, and we do it right there during the call anyway. When we use WordPress comments to do this, the built-in comments you can leave in WordPress, it has another interesting effect, social proof. If suddenly 25 people come in, and in about 2 minutes, there’s a flood of all these people committing to the actions they’re going to take, then anyone else who’s on the fence or anyone else who comes in months later when all the videos are already posted and they see all these people participating, they say, “Okay. First of all, it must not be as difficult as I’m building it up in my head because look at all these people who are doing it. Second, this training must be awesome because all these people are participating, and third, this person must be a great marketer because they have tons and tons of students in the class.”
Then, what we used to have people do, we don’t do it so much anymore, is we tell people to come back to that same post and leave another comment saying, “I am done.” In that way, we’d have even more social proof because, first, we have those handful of quick action-takers committing. They go out and get some results. They come back and say, “I am done,” so then you’d have just a huge, huge list of people who then took some action.
We switched away from that like I said because we used to have a lot of live training, and then now, we post… Now, we just… Many times just post a video. There’s not much of a difference there. Then, the other thing that happened too is we had some of these posts in our membership site that got 600-plus comments, and I have to go in and look at them all, and then sometimes, people would say post a URL like their blog or their podcast, and then I leave that on there for like five… He doesn’t come back 5 years later, and a lot of these [texts 00:17:18] should be gone, so that’s… There’s a few reasons there why now we use WP Notepad instead of the comment box, but either way you want to do it, that’s an easy way to do that.
Now, next, very… Another simple thing to do is to list the resources that you mention, and this is again a nice little touch. Most people don’t do it, and it’s going to be so helpful when you do it, but what you do is if you mentioned any kind of website, item to buy, tool, piece of software, book, whatever, have that list on the webpage where you have the module. Basically, what we have is someone logs into our site. They see usually a table or a grid of different modules to go to, so module 1 is the place where they need to start. They click on that. They go to a new page, and they see what? They see a video they can play. They see the challenge they can fill out, and then they see a bullet-pointed list of resources.
For example, we might have a training course or a module where we say, “Well, use WordPress,” so link to WordPress. We say, “Install this program called ‘iTunes,'” link to iTunes. We say, “Use this headset to record your podcast,” an Amazon link to buy that and get that shipped to your home. We just have this list, and many times, it’s only 4 things. Sometimes, it gets up to about 10 or 12, but it’s just so helpful to have that list, so as they’re watching the video, they can click on the link, open a new tab. In that way, they can just do it as they’re watching.
Then, what I like to do, another nice little touch is install a plug-in, a free one called “TablePress,” and arrange many of these resources into a nice, little grid, so that rows, and columns, and things like that because that way, they can just click around and easily… We can easily compress all of these links into almost like one webpage above the fold and as opposed to just a list, so a list of resources using either bullet points or TablePress if you can manage it.
Next, as we’re getting into the homestretch to last few items here. One is to collect their physical address. They paid you money, and you might have paid for advertising. You might have done some kind of marketing like a pitch webinar. You might have had to sell them in your support desk. You might have to help them out with support anyway, so why not collect their address. Always collect their mailing address even if they’re getting something from you for free, for a dollar, for $7, for $2,000. Collect their physical address.
Why? Because we… and collect their phone number too. We use a plug-in called “WP Kunaki,” also included at Membership Cube, to do that. Why do we do that? Why do we collect their address? Because at the very least, you can give them a quick phone call saying, “Thanks for buying. I just wanted to say thank you.” It’s a nice touch. Most people won’t do that. Second, if you ever wanted to write a quick postcard or something, or use a service called “doubleagentcards.com” and shoot them a quick thank you message, or have a URL on there for some other offer they can buy, then why not?
If you want to send them one of your books or you want to, at some point, make DVDs of your course, you can mail those as well. WP Kunaki pops up prompts when they log into your site, so we don’t want to capture their mailing address before they buy or after registering their account. There’s already a lot of steps there, so what happens is they go to a webpage called a “sales letter,” click a button, usually check out through PayPal, and then they go to a webpage where… By the way, we use WishList Member for this. The webpage says, “What username do you want? What password do you want? What’s your email address? What’s your first and last name?” What is that? Five items.
They do that, and even… You’re going to be surprised at how many people will pay money even high-ticket, and then not really do much more than that, but that’s just how it works, but most people get to that point. Then, as soon as they log in, and then it pops up, and it guesses based on your shopping cart like there might already be an address there, and they have to either accept that, or correct it, and then accept it. It will keep popping up every time they come back to our site until they actually click that “Confirm” button. Then, once they do click that “Confirm” button, a few things happen.
First of all… The biggest thing is that you get a notification. You get an email saying, “Such and such person verified their address,” and then you can go in and take whatever action needs to be taken, send some DVDs, call them on the phone, and then you can click a special link, and mark them as “Shipped.” They verified themselves, and then you can go ahead and ship whatever needs shipping, and then now, they are marked as “Shipped.” You know what? Later on, you can even go through and unmark all of your members as verified, so they will all have to come back later and reconfirm their address. That’s WP Kunaki, included in our Membership Cube course.
Now, you can make physical DVDs of your course. The tool I use to do this is called “Kunaki,” K-U-N-A-K-I, and a software tool called “Sony DVD Architect.” We cover physical products in Membership Cube near the end, but don’t think that physical products are the reason why you’re not making money like physical products, having a physical DVD, physical manual. First of all, that’s a big cost. Like for a 4-module course, which would be about… I don’t know, 300 pages or so. I would say that that costs us about $10 to $15 for the DVDs to ship out, and then probably about another $15 including shipping to get the manual created as well.
If the course is a piece of crap, having a DVD version is not going to save you, so that’s one thing I want to put out there that DVDs and things like that are nice to have, and the way that you can ship them out is to have this WP Kunaki plug-in which works with WordPress and WishList Member. They log in, a pop-up appears, confirm their address, you get a notification, do whatever needs to be done.
Next, group or personal coaching call. It’s one thing to give people video training and stuff like that, but a lot of people, they need either some extra hand holding or after they go through and complete, [you’re expected 00:23:47] to know what the next step is, and you can do it in one of 2 ways. You can do a group call. We prefer more where you say, “Okay. You join this course. You get all the videos, you get them all instantly. Go at your own pace, but in 2 weeks or in 7 days, we’re all going to meet at a group call to answer any questions you have.” What you do is you sign up for a trial with a service called “GoToWebinar,” and then schedule the time, and go to webinar.
Basically, you say, “I need to create a title for my next training session, my next bonus session. I need to decide on what time it will start,” and then GoToWebinar gives you a special link. People can click on the link and register for your webinar, and then when it comes time to present the webinar, you click the button, open up the call, show your stream, they hear your voice, you talk about whatever needs to be talked about. If they have questions, great. If not, still talk about what you’re going to talk about, and you’re done.
The other variance of this is the personal coaching call where… This is where you meet with each person one-on-one, so this is… if you have a small list, or you want to do something different, or if you’re selling a high-ticket product like a thousand-dollar product, this is really easy bonus to add in. Sometimes, every now and then, I’ve done it for a low-ticket product. Now, why would I do that? If someone only paid me $7 or $20, why the heck would I meet with them for 10, 20 minutes? Isn’t that minimum wage rates? Well, not the way that I look at it.
The way I look at it is that I’m getting a customer for life, and I like to have… Every week, I like to have some time allotted to do some kind of personal one-on-one coaching call, and so who… If someone wants to schedule themselves 6 months in the future, I’m still going to spend that 1 hour or those 90 minutes a week meeting on and doing coaching calls because I’m at the computer anyway for those 90 minutes.
We use a tool called “TimeTrade” for this. What’s good about TimeTrade is you can set basically office hours. You can say… I think what we have right now is we have it like every Tuesday from 10:00 to 10:30, my time, Pacific time, and then 2:00pm to 2:30pm. Those are 2 different slots someone can sign up for personal coaching with us as a bonus to one of our products. Those are the 2 timeslots, and so I only have to deliver 2 coaching calls per week. If someone has to schedule themselves out a couple months later on because those are the only spots available, that’s just how it is.
Then, we use TimeTrade to actually schedule the appointment. It connects to our Google Calendar, and then we use a tool called “Skype” to call people either on Skype or over their phone landline and talk to them for 20 minutes about whatever it is that they’re talking about. They don’t try to stump us. They don’t usually have tough questions. Many times, the questions they do have are huge light bulb moment for me and make me realize, “Well, hey. That gives me a good idea for something, some feature to add in that software, some extra YouTube video, or something to keep in mind the next time I promote that course because I figured out now that’s the reason why they bought the course.”
We’ve gotten testimonials that way. We got them to buy other things from us that way. It doesn’t work out like that every single time, but if you enjoy what you’re doing, if you enjoy stock trading, real estate, hypnosis, internet marketing, whatever your niche is, then why the heck wouldn’t you meet with someone who also likes that for 20 minutes? You might even make a friend, or a joint venture partner, or an affiliate along the way.
Then finally, software. Software is great. I mean, software is bad because it’s tough to make, right? It might be expensive. You might have to hire someone. You might hire someone to maintain it, but it’s great like all that little bit of a downside is far outweighed by the huge upside that this is a way that you differentiate. Most people don’t have software, and most niches, there is some kind of software. Why don’t you go to Google right now and search the name of your niche like… Let’s try hypnosis software.
I’m going to search “podcasting software” because I’m really curious, and the podcasting software, that’s something that I really wanted to do for a while, so what if I made like a mobile app where they could tap a button, speak up their podcast episode, and it would go, and tag it, upload it, get traffic to it?
If I look for hypnosis software, there is Virtual Hypnotist, Subliminal Hypnosis, and I’m just looking around, and it looks like there are software where they can layer in the hypnosis. They can say, “Well, do you want to have a long or a short session? Do you want to have visual input? Do you want to have wavy lines? Do you want to have nature sounds? Do you want to have white noise? Do you want to have a female or a male voice? Have the voice be fast or slow? Have any kind of subliminal messages?” All kinds of interesting things.
You want to make it, so they can customize hypnosis, brain wave tracks for waking up, thinking, energy, focus, happiness, relaxing, and fun, so look up the software that your competitors put out in your niche, and chances are that you can put something out that’s a lot easier to make and a lot simpler. Many times, you might be able to even buy a resell rights. Maybe if we look up like “hypnosis software resell rights” and just see if anyone is selling some kind of a resell right, so I’m seeing audios and things like that.
But then, we maybe we can find resell rights to some kind of like an audio player, and then buy hypnosis audios, and then package them together, or there are… There’s a site called “Code Canyon” where many times for like web-based scripts and things, or WordPress plug-ins, or if you want to make like a Udemy clone, a Fivver clone, a job site, things like that, many times, we can buy the full-on rights to that, and then give it away as a free bonus for people who then buy our course.
Even if you can’t do that, what if you even just contacted someone that made one of these software programs and asked for a discount, or how about this? How about free access for your students? This is something where you’ve done this a couple times, and I love doing this. I love doing it because… I got to say. Someone buy some other course, then they can get free access to maybe like our backup creator plug-in or something, so this is great for them because they can sell a course, and then one of the reasons to buy the course is they get our plug-in.
I love it too because I get that lead. I get a new… $100, or $200, or $500 buyer that I wouldn’t have had before. It can’t hurt just to contact the developers. The worst they can do is say no, and we’ve made many of these deals. Like for example, in Membership Cube. When you buy Membership Cube, then we go out, and we… We have a pool of licenses on hand for WishList Member, and we actually pay out of our pocket. We don’t get it for free. We pay out of our pocket for WishList for you, and so this makes like a really cool deal because you can get them and us all in one package, and then we win because we don’t have to make the sale of the membership plug-in, and then WishList win because they get you as a lead for their software.
Software. I could go on and on about that with your membership site, but if you can swing it, if you can make some kind of deal, some kind of bundle, buy some rights, get a discount, get a free access, whatever, then that’s a real nice way to make your membership pop, membership site pop in addition to a PDF, checklist, challenge, list of resources, collect addresses, put out DVDs, group or personal coaching call, and software. Man, we covered a lot today, and what I want you to do right now is go to membershipcube.com and sign up, and get your membership site online tonight.
We’ll show you how to use WordPress. We’ll show you how to use WishList. We’ll show you how to put the videos online there. We’ll show you how to get the payment button online there. We’ll show you how to get the sales letter on, get some traffic because life is too short to not have a membership site, to not have recurring passive income, to wonder, “What should/could if I only figured out a way to get my membership site up and running?” Let’s do it this week. Let’s do it tonight at membershipcube.com. I’m Robert Plank from the Membership Site Podcast. Please rate and review us at membershipcube.com/blog/itunes. I’ll be very grateful that you do, and I’ll talk to you in the next episode. Thanks and bye now.
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