"I Was So Tired of the Income Roller Coaster"
What if you had a base of income and impact that grew over time and created peace of mind in all you do?
Hi, I'm Angela Wills
I started my business with NO training and NO idea what I was doing. I spent many years on the "Income Roller Coaster" and I was not having FUN.
You know it, right? That spurts and fits or feast or famine kind of income?
When I offered services I might do great one month and then next month scramble to pay the bills.
When I did courses I'd have a five-figure launch and then have three months with the income down to a crawl.
I felt like I just couldn't get ahead.
I quit my job in 2007 to provide services so I could work from home and be home with my son.
I soon realized that the "one to many" model was a better way to leverage my time and I started creating products.
Then, I realized that recurring income could be added into the mix.
Recurring income meant I could ask for the sale ONCE and get paid again and again. I liked that idea!
This allows a base income to be established and a focus on GROWTH.
BUT... I had concerns about how to implement a membership:
- What if I put in a lot of work and had only a few members?
- Would it be worth it? Would it work?
- How did I get people to be actively participating in the membership?
- Would I be able to help people create results?
- What amount of members would be worth the effort?
- What if I run out of ideas for content to deliver?
- How much content do I need to start with?
So many questions!
I didn't have all the answers when I got started.
What I did have, however, was a vision that 100 people at $40 per month would equal $4000/month and that would give me approximately what I needed to pay all the main household bills and food and our main needs.
So that would be my baseline and my goal.
I also knew I could come up with content.
I sat down with the intention to write out 12 months worth of content ideas and I managed to easily come up with 24, so I knew I had a viable idea.
I made a SIMPLE plan to deliver one live workshop per month with one workbook. This wasn't too much work and it could be easily repurposed into non-membership products or given away to build my authority and community.
So I went for it!
That was in 2010. Ten years ago.
I have been running memberships ever since and I have not one day regretted keeping dedicated to creating that base of income.
Focusing on that income goal and not thinking about how fast I got there was what kept me going.
That baseline income keeps me and my family secure, even in crazy times like we are experiencing with Covid or happy times like when my second child was born.
Don't get me wrong:
Memberships take work, dedication and long-term vision but it has been massively worth the effort and I am so very grateful for the customers who said YES to committing to working with me.
What Does it Mean to Start a Membership?
People typically consider memberships to be some sort of ongoing monthly or annual payment in exchange for a product and usually, a community component.
Communities are often in Facebook but could be in other places like forums or in live weekly meetings, etc. .
Ultimately it's up to you... your membership can be anything you want it to be. Digital products, physical products, community, meetings, webinars, workshops, ebooks, etc.
Your business, your choice!
I Wanted My Time to be My Own
There are a lot of benefits to having one-on-one clients and I think it's worth it at the right time and for the right people.
In 2007 when I quit my job my entire business plan was to work as a Virtual Assistant with clients. It got me from factory to working at home and that was as far ahead in the plan as I had thought through.
Here's me back at that time...
full of hope and dreams and determination:
For me, it was draining and not a long-term plan to work individually with clients.
I take people's energy... which they say makes me empathetic.
I also was bad with boundaries... which means people didn't respect my time.
Combine that with a lack of confidence and a low self-worth and I had a recipe for a business I hated! UGH!
But you know, I kept moving forward. I started creating products and I used the skills I had learned from working one-on-one and turned them into a course to teach people how to build their own websites.
I had a growing digital product empire but I wanted to create MORE impact, working with people who didn't feel like they owned my time or who demanded to get on my schedule.
I wanted a way to do what I was good at and provide a lot of impact AND enjoy my life in any way I saw fit.
That's why I was sooo dedicated to creating a membership site. I saw it as the route to:
- Complete Lifestyle Freedom to do whatever I want.
- Impact on a long-term basis, helping people with what I know.
- A community of tight-knit, amazing people who get each other - aka. built in friends!
Networking is NOT What It Used to Be
Creating your own membership creates a tight-knit community of amazing people who get each other....
Seriously though. Can I rant just a moment?
A very popular "networking" option is to join a free Facebook group and look for people you can connect with.
So then what? Friend random strangers?
I recently had someone do this to me.
Here's the message a total stranger sent me:
I've blurred anything that could indicate who this would be because this isn't about the person who sent it.
It's about the tactic.
Is this what networking has come to?
This message came after I was friended, send a quick "welcome to my circle" message, invited to join her group and then this.
As the leader of a membership site I think we can do better, so much better!
When we build memberships that ALLOW members to speak freely we allow people to CONNECT... making REAL connections with TRUE interest.
Your members won't push their business in someone's face like was done in this message, they won't need to! They'll find FRIENDS who want to share the message to support someone they believe in.
Even if you intend to start a consumer-related group there are so many ways you can foster true, authentic relationships so that your members want to STAY... they will make real friends if you make a few things available to them.
You can facilitate this kind of community and become a source of great value to a community that is just THRILLED to participate in your offerings because they know the kind of valuable relationships they'll earn from that participation.
The way I did this in my own community has been to:
- ENCOURAGE real discussions! No more banning people from sharing their links or products or what they sell. When groups do this it's like giving every business owner detention because some "bad" ones are inconsiderate spammers, while most are not.
- Create interactions based on getting to know each other. For example a great way to let your members get to know each other is to do regular coworking groups and have people state what they're working on. Or do accountability posts in your community group where people list what they are working on each day.
It's a crazy paradigm... we are so connect yet so disconnect at the very same time.
YOU can be the person who makes these connections happen in a very real way, providing your community with a safe, comfortable, active way to connect with others and take action on their goals, no matter what they are.
Create Recurring Income While Making an Impact & Building a Loyal Following
I've been running memberships for over 10 years now and it occurs to me that I've NEVER run a coaching program on memberships.
I knew the responsibility of teaching memberships was a big one and I knew I had to be ready.
Building a thriving membership is NOT a little deal. You MUST be dedicated and you MUST see your work as a work in progress.
If you're here thinking you'll give it a couple of months and "see if it works" this program is not for you. I spent three years just figuring out what kind of content to deliver to my members - this is not a flash in the pan kind of process!
And it's always changing.
What works to engage your members one month might flop another.
What they want to buy one year might change in another.
What YOU like to create over time may change, too.
You need to learn to work with those ebbs and flows and create a base of income that stands the test of time.
You might be ready to start a membership if you:
- You can come up with a minimum of 12 topics to talk worth paying for each month - go on and write it now... I'll wait.
- You're not afraid to sell. Memberships are one of the hardest things to sell. You can't be wishy-washy about this. You need to believe you CAN sell it and not be afraid to do so or you won't get anything from this training.
- You have long-term vision. No point in making this a "oh I'll try it out" kind of effort. You'll be disappointed and none of us want that. See long-term what you want from this. It helps to start with a base of income - what is it? Write that down... I'll wait. ;)
Fixing the Income Roller Coaster
If you've been in business more than a little bit of time you'll know all about the roller coaster ride that it is.
While memberships can't take the ride away completely, it can definitely make it much more enjoyable!
Sure the high highs are fun!
When I made $10,000 in a couple of weeks launching my WordPress courses it was great but then barely making ANY money for the following two months (the low lows) was not full at all!
Once I leveled out with a base income I was able to grow my business because I wasn't in constant panic mode trying to make the next high highs even higher so they'd last me through the lows. That's not the way I wanted to live.
As I said my base income goal was $4000/month. Once I got to even just $2000 per month in recurring income (the blue flat line above) that was sooo much of a nicer way to live than the crazy roller coaster in the top part!
How to Know You're Ready to Start a Membership Site
If you ask me any of the following questions, I'll know you're NOT ready to start a membership site:
- How many people should I have in my membership to make it worth it?
- How much content should my membership have?
- What kind of content do I need? Forums? Webinars? Meetings? eBooks? What's the "right" thing to include?
These do seem like innocent enough questions and you'd assume the person asking them IS ready because they're thinking through what they need.
The problem with these questions has to do with mindset.
In each of these questions you're starting with the belief that there's a right or wrong here and you've got to get it right or you're going to fail.
And that, ironically, is a good way to guarantee that you WILL FAIL.
I don't think it's fair to invite you to start a membership site if you're already set up to fail.
I WILL, however, invite you to do so if you're open to look at it in another way and that is this:
You can create so many things that will serve your people and HOW you lay that out doesn't matter nearly as much as your dedication to figuring it out WITH your members.
You can't magically know what people want... that comes from the interactions you can ONLY get by starting and keeping on and interacting with real people who buy from you - customers.
That means really clearer - You do not need to have it all figured out from the start, you just need a starting point.
So if you're ready to just TRUST yourself, TRUST your audience and TRUST me and say "let's go!" then this training would be a great fit for you.
If you're ready to move forward without all the answers and are prepared to stick it out for the long-haul with a membership offer, then you're ready to start a membership program.
OH - and you probably will want to know WHO you are offering a membership to and HOW you intend to help them.
For example, me, from day 1 I have been intent with my membership on teaching people how to sell online so they can create the kind of freedom I started looking for in 2002 when my son was born. The same freedom I enjoyed again in 2014 when my daughter was born and I had created what I'd sought out.
Here is our little family of four on vacation in Nova Scotia, Canada. No vacation time needed. I took time off and payments from membership kept coming in:
If you're ready to commit to something that has the ability to provide you with long-term peace of mind for your life and your business then starting a membership might just be for you.
I'd love to teach you all I know and help you generate a plan of action to put your own membership into place.
Here's how I can do that...
Introducing... Membership Impact!
Let's be real: Memberships take a commitment.
You gotta be invest to make this work.
But with big commitment comes big reward and if you're willing to go there then running a membership site could be one of the best decisions you ever make for your business.
So here we are.
Over four weeks starting on November 9th you'll get access to training and resources from Membership Impact to help you plan, launch and grow your membership site.
Here's what you will get:
- Lesson Planners that give the steps to membership creation and some sections to brainstorm and work through as you build your membership.
- Resources for your memberships - Checklists, Templates, Processes, etc. I'll dig through all my own resources and find you everything I can that I believe will help you.
- Training presentations for each step of the process - I will break the membership planning, launching and growing processes into lessons and presentations that you can watch on-demand or via a pre-set schedule if you prefer to have dates on calendars. This training will be in video. Audio versions will be available for on-the-go learning.
- Bonus materials - I've got some fun bonus materials planned for you including an interview with a successful membership site owner and walk-through training of my own software that I use to run my membership.
Here's what you'll learn in Membership Impact.
I'm so ready to deliver this training to you and excited for all the possible ways you can use it.
In all my years selling online I have never created a full training on the topic of membership yet it's the foundation of everything I do.
I had to be ready to teach something so significant, as I wanted to be sure I had the BEST advice I could give to you on something that can be such an important part of your business.
My recurring membership income has seen me through the uncertainty of buying a new home, the frustration of a large injury, the birth of a new baby who drastically cut my working hours and so much more.
My recurring membership was truly the BASE for all I did beyond that. If I couldn't do more, I had my baseline income... if I could do more I had that boost of the additional work added to that.
Plus... I grew my members and grew my income over time and my base got bigger and bigger.... providing me with more stabilization and peace of mind as time went on.
If you want this for yourself then I'm here to help, to guide, to teach you how to do this! I can't wait!
There are some people this course isn't for, though.
Membership Impact is not for you if...
Membership Impact IS FOR YOU if...
People Like My Training:
I have been teaching online business and marketing courses since 2010. Here are some of the people who've liked my training:
"I have to say that your courses are top-notch and I'm very pleased with all the courses I've purchased from you. I'm really making progress.. You've really touched my heart with your kind endeavor and gesture. I can feel that you genuinely have the interest of your subscribers at heart which is a rare commodity nowadays
A Final Note About Memberships:
You might be wondering if now is the right time for you to start a membership site.
I can tell you this - nothing gets you taking action like knowing someone is going to be waiting for you to deliver on your promise.
And nothing makes you get creative about finding new people like knowing the more people you find the more money you make (without having to do any extra work)!
I'm NOT the most self-motivated person AT ALL. I trick myself into doing work by putting myself in situations where I have to deliver. Membership sites fit this bill. I've had deadlines of the first of the month to deliver a product, or by a workshop or webinar date... this works!
As long as you're the kind of person who does what you say you'll do then it's likely NOW is a very good time to start.
Just imagine where you could be in a year from now, how many members could you have, if you start today!
Copyright 2020, Angela Wills - Disclaimer