Launching your membership site might resemble the Grand Opening celebration of a traditional store. Imagine the preparation and effort you would invest in telling everyone you know to be there on that day. People get excited when something new is coming and they have been invited to participate. You organize every aspect of the inventory, or in this case content, to be attractive and interesting for everyone who stops by to visit.
As a business owner, you would never think of quietly opening the doors of your business without as much publicity as you could find, including every news outlet in the area. An online membership site offers many opportunities for you to let other people know what is coming and build remarkable buzz around that first day! Maybe you weren’t considering a formal launch for your site, but this article might change your mind.
Search Engine Marketing
Interest in your niche draws potential members to search for popular terms on the search engines. To be noticed, your site must contain those words in ways that the most used search engines will find you. Specific information must be included in the pages you post, so your membership site will draw interested new members.
Hold a Referal Contest
Existing members are the best referral source you have for your membership site. As they talk to people in the niche, you will be amazed at the number of queries you receive to learn more about your site. To make this work, you must have a way for people to send people to an open part of your site or a sales page. Tracking the referrals does not require an affiliate program. The new member should tell you who referred them to you. Run your contest for a certain period, maybe 90 days, and track the winners.
Social Networking Sites
Interaction is the key to success on social networking sites. Automated posts do not yield the same results as reaching out to real people. Social media can be impersonal and robotic without some finesse that demands your time. No one can express your interest in growing your site like you can. Start with some of your favorite sites and explore the interests other people are pursuing. Forget about gathering members, and focus on answering questions and participating as a member first. Create a Facebook page for your membership site with the same name. Interact with your existing members and find out what is interesting to them. These real people will provide more interaction than you can imagine.
Affiliate programs are great for growing a membership site in certain niches. As your site expands, you will be able to reach out to even more people. Again, your existing members can become affiliates and share in your success. Anyone you know is a potential affiliate for your site. Bloggers are great for mentioning the best sites in a niche. Your connections with other people will provide a healthy network of new members. Personal connections are easier to build when they start with interest in your niche. Every person knows at least five other people in your niche. Your ability to start the conversation will make those new connections even easier to establish. Paying part of your monthly income to affiliates is worth their efforts to expand your reach.
Some niches are popular in the forums because answers from members can be expanded to solve real challenges through anonymous avenues. Other niches use forums to start and then gravitate toward blogs and social media. Your challenge will be to discover which forums are most helpful in your niche. Sometimes you will find a forum that has migrated somewhere, but you cannot find the former members of the forum. In other words, your active participation must be invested where people are talking about your niche and seeking more information. As you gain exposure in the forums, remember to include a coupon code on your signature link to your membership sales page.
As you consider the best way to get the word out about your membership site, be creative and follow the avenues that match your personality and niche. You might ask some of your current members to share some of their favorite places to find information. Those same places will be great for asking your questions and building rapport with others. Provide places for your potential members to visit and learn more about your site. Your blog is a great place for information about your site. Link all of your sites together through interesting content about your niche. That trail should lead to your membership site where people will gather more information about you and your favorite subject.
How do you find new members?
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