5 Tips For Creating A Membership Culture In Your Business

5 Tips For Creating A Membership Culture In Your Business

What is it that you do? You might be the president of a Chamber of Commerce or you might run a gym membership business. Maybe you run a golf and country club or you have a coaching membership business. Regardless of the niche, you lead a membership business and that is different from a customer-based business.

A customer-based business is one and done. You get the customer and you hope that they come back, but with a membership business there is an ongoing commitment.

Your members are saying, “I’m going to make an ongoing investment into the services you provide.” You have to treat members differently, because this is not a customer-based business; it’s a membership-based business. And because of that we have to have a different mindset than a customer-based business. We have to have the mind-
set that we are creating a membership culture.

One thing to realize when you’re creating a membership culture, is that there’s not a single problem that your membership business faces that can’t be fixed by either new members or the retention of current members.

Let’s say you want to do a new marketing campaign. How are you going to pay for that if it’s not in the budget? The way you’re going to do that is by getting new members or increasing retention of your current members. When you create a new level of membership and get people to ascend, that investment that they’re making would create the funds you need for the marketing campaign.

Let’s say you want to create an event for your members or hire a new staff member or give yourself a raise. Any of these problems can be solved by getting more members or increasing retention.

Now that you have the understanding that members solve problems in your business, think about it in terms of your salary. What is your annual salary and how many membership payments does it take to equal your salary?

Let’s say that your annual salary is $40,000, although hopefully it is more than that! And let’s say that your members are paying $100 per month. You can do the math and know that it takes 400 members to pay your annual salary.

Your staff ought to also know that their salary is provided by members and their investment into your membership business. When they realize that, then an email or a phone call from a member wanting to cancel takes on a whole new meaning, because it is tied to their salary.

Now that you know that members can fix problems, let me give you something else to think about in terms of your membership culture.

When a member quits, what is actually happening?

Well one of the things that’s happening is that they are saying to you, “You are no longer able to help.” They are removing you from that place of authority and now you think to yourself, “I’m no longer able to help this person, even though this membership program that I’ve got is designed to help them.”

When you have a membership culture mindset, you will realize that they’re actually saying, “you’re no longer able to influence me or my business.” And when that happens, the influence of your own membership business suffers.

If you continue to have cancellation after cancellation, you can guess what’s going to happen. Your influence is going to be diminished down to zero, because you’re not going to have any members.

As your other members gather together and notice the dwindling crowd or hear about others quitting, they will begin thinking that the overall influence of your membership program is declining. They’ll see that the influence of your membership business is being reduced with every cancellation. When we have the mindset of a membership culture we realize that cancellations mean we are losing influence. I don’t want that to happen to you.

The other thing that happens when a member quits is that they’re taking money from you. They are taking that membership fee and saying, “I’m no longer going to give my investment to you.” You ought to look at that and say, “I can’t let that happen. I can’t lose their investment.” That may sound selfish, but we have a business to run. You have
other members to help and influence who are investing in you and counting on your membership business. The right mindset will help you realize that when one person removes their investment, then all of the members are affected.

In a membership culture, we should also be celebrating each member.

In my previous business where we were coaching pastors and we took the membership from 72 pastors to over 3,000 pastors, one of the things we did was to map the location of each of our members. We had a map where we imported all the locations of our members.

This was a world-wide coaching business with members in Indonesia, South Africa, the UK and South America, as well as tons of members here in America. We could look at every pinpoint and know that each one represented a member. We could click on that pinpoint to pull up a member’s profile and see what kind of influence we were having in that community. I would encourage you to map your members out.

Even if you are leading a local membership business, you can map your members out within the county or within your community. We used MapAList.com, but you can probably use Google to find others map tools. It is a good visual tool to be able to celebrate all of your members, looking at them all at one time. It doesn’t matter if you are on a local level, a national level, or a global level, it is a great feeling to look at that map and see all the places that you can have an influence over and that you’re helping.

When I look at my map today and see all of the places around the world and across the US where I’m helping my members, it brings me so much joy and I celebrate that! I want you to celebrate your members, too.

Another way you can celebrate your members is just by printing out their names. Maybe it’s a new member list that you print out each week and send around to your staff.

Maybe you just hang it up on your own wall so you can look at it and say, “here are all of the new members that we’ve picked up over the past week.”

The last thing to know about creating a membership culture, is that quitters need to be recaptured.

When a member comes to you and says that they’re quitting, don’t just let them go. Find a way to recapture them.  Have the membership culture mindset that says, “I can’t just let a member go. I’ve got to keep my members, celebrate them, and for those that quit, I’ve got to find a way to recapture them.”

If you’re ready to multiply your membership and money, here are four more ways we can work together!

1. Join a really cool Facebook group for “membership marketers” who want to grow & scale. It will be useful for you. Check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/membershipmarketers

2. Get a FREE copy of Accelerate: How to Get Your Next 10, 100, 500 or Even 1,000 Members… Yes, you can get a free copy of my brand-new book! In it, you discover more on how to promote your membership, get more members and increase retention. Kim wrote the foreword – you’ll discover more about her membership.  Click here to get your free book now!

3.  Triple Your Membership And Do It Over and Over Again Toolkit This is the fastest way to get more members and take a member from sign-up to fully-engaged. You get the full toolkit with blueprints, templates and processes to help you get more members. Click here to learn more!

4. Are you interested in growing your membership by 300% in the next 12 months? If you’re looking to get more members in a week than you did all month and you’re tired of “sending and hoping” people will sign up…just send me an email and put “MAXIMIZE” in the subject line… tell me a little about your membership and what you’d like to work on together, and I’ll get you all the details!

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About Scott Whitaker

Scott is an expert in creating and building membership programs within businesses, giving greater value to customers and multiplying income. Using his "Seven Systems of a Healthy Membership Program," he will help you get new members, increase retention and structure your membership program for long-term growth.