Are you afraid that your membership site idea won’t work?
Would you like to know how to validate it before you actually start building a membership website?
In this video, I’m going to give you 3 tips on how to do just that.
The article down below the video will cover similar ideas and concepts.
But it’s still worth reading to make sure you get the most out of this post.
Alright, so how do you validate your membership website idea and make sure that you minimize the risk before going all-in?
Well, you can never be 100% certain that it will work.
But here are some strategies that can help you get a clue.
So, without further ado, let’s get started with the 1st one.
1. Talk to your audience and pre-sell
When you’re starting a membership site, ideally you should already have an audience.
Because unless you have one, it’s going to be much harder to create a compelling offer, market, and sell your business.
Remember – your membership site has to offer some kind of recurring value if you want your members to stay.
And in order to offer that, you have to know exactly what kind of problems you’re solving for your audience.
That’s why it’s important to pay a lot of attention to what they’re saying, their frustrations and pain points.
Once you know those, you can start thinking about a solution to that problem.
I would personally start with a list of 2-3 ideas that I think may be helpful to people.
Once you have those, you can survey your audience and which one of those offers sounds the most interesting to them.
Here is an example of my conversation with somebody on Facebook that used that exact approach:
Just like that – a short conversation gave this person a sense of clarity and definitely helped him move forward.
Now, you have a sense of what your audience wants, you can start pre-selling.
Create something valuable but relatively simple.
Don’t focus on all the fancy features at this stage, strip your offer down to its’ core.
Once you have that, create a simple landing page where you describe your program, the benefits that people will get and what’s included.
Then, start selling it at a discounted price and let people know that the reason for the discount is because you’re testing out the program.
David Vidales does a great job with this.
Here is a snippet from his landing page where he sells his program
2. Check what your competition is doing
Very often, when you have a membership site idea, you will find out that there is already someone who has the same site or at least a very similar one.
While this may create some problems for you in the future as far as competition goes, you should also use that as an advantage.
Especially if you’re just starting out.
If they’re doing well with their business, there is a good chance that you will do great as well with your similar business idea.
Because they have already tested the market with their offer and got people to buy from them.
People who are the first ones to do something very often take the most risk of failure (but also get great rewards if things work out).
So if their business is thriving – this should be a good sign for you.
Now, what I would do now is I would start doing research on them.
Join their email list, their Facebook group, go through their funnel, talk to their clients and read reviews online about them.
Once you at least some of those things, you will see how their business is structured and what works.
This should give you an idea of how you may structure your business.
Now, I’m not advocating for you to copy exactly everything that they do (although you may if you think it’s ok).
Instead, what you. can (and probably should) do is to model your business after them.
If you think that you may do some things better than they do – then go ahead and do it.
But use your competitor as guidance and proof that your idea has a good chance of working out.
3. Start with an MVP
What the hell are you talking about?
What is an MVP, Andriy?
We’re not NBA players, aren’t we?
We’re here to do business.
Yeah, you’re right.
Let me explain.
MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product.
Essentially, it’s a version of your product that is stripped of the fancy features that you may want to have.
MVP should only contain the most essential features that provide the most value to your customers.
This approach is used very often in the Software and App/Web Development worlds.
And why is this approach effective?
It’s because it allows you to test the waters and see how your market responds to your idea before you spend multiple six-figures on the project itself.
Let me give you an example of how this may apply to your situation.
Let’s say you want a fancy membership and e-learning site.
And you want to have a forum on your site, you want your members to be able to watch videos and comment on them and upload their homework to the site so you can assess them.
What’s even worse, oftentimes you as a site owner don’t even know if their audience is going to use these things.
It may turn out that half of it is completely redundant.
So why would you invest all that time and money into something that may be worthless?
I personally wouldn’t.
Here a better suggestion in my opinion: start with the bare minimum.
In this situation, it may be just educational videos without all the other features.
You may not even need a WordPress membership site.
It may be easier for you to use something like Kajabi or Teachable.
And yes, as your business grows, you may need to migrate to a self-hosted solution like WordPress.
Maybe you will even need to hire a developer to help you with that.
But there is no point in spending thousands of dollars building something complex, buying all these plugins and trying to make them work together before you’re sure that your business idea works.
I hope this makes sense and I hope that you can see how this ‘lean’ approach can benefit you and your business.
Starting a membership site is not easy and can be risky if you don’t know whether people will buy.
And the truth is that you never know until you try.
But I hope that some of the tactics that we’ve covered today will help you launch a successful website.
And remember, if you need help building your own WordPress membership site – feel free to contact me to discuss your project.