Launching a paid membership community to roaring success is the dream for many entrepreneurs out there, but Megan Sherer and Katrina Wright made it a reality.
Together this creative duo launched a holistic therapy community called The Self-Care Space and built a white-label branded app on Mighty Pro to bring it to fruition. Within their app, they offer self-guided therapy programs, live events, and a supportive online community and made $30,000 during their launch.
We have five lessons from The Self-Care Space’s launch that will help you create a paid membership business that’s a roaring success.
Spoiler: Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was The Self-Care Space. Through careful planning and creative execution, Sherer and Wright built something that’s more than they imagined.
Let’s dive in.
1. Emphasize the social elements of your membership
The key to unlocking a highly engaged community is actually building a space that people want to visit. That might seem obvious, but we’ve all been in plenty of online “communities” that are the opposite of engaging.
This is the kind of work you can plan for in advance of your paid membership launch. First and foremost, the goal of running a paid membership site should be that the members are the ones doing most of the talking.
In The Self-Care Space on average, their 800+ members contribute over 82% of all the posts in the community. This is an incredible result that was made possible by Sherer and Wright creating a safe space for their members to connect through self-led and group-focused programming that connects their members together through shared experiences.
2. Expand your reach through partnerships
Doing everything yourself is a losing battle when launching a highly successful paid membership. Sherer actualized The Self-Care Space by seizing big opportunities through partnerships.
Sherer partnered with, Katrina Wright, a successful Instagram influencer, who helped kickstart the business. Sherer leveraged Wright’s pre-existing following of over 840,000 people, as well as a successful business venture called The Sculpt You with 10,000 monthly members and 118,000 Instagram followers.
How’d Sherer leverage Wright’s large following? She got creative and began offering free live events and workshops through Wright’s social media channels that gave prospective members a taste of what The Self-Care Space was all about.
Finally, Sherer found success in building an advisory board for The Self-Care Space compromised of influential professionals in different fields. This expanded their reach because they had more followings to tap into, and allowed them to differentiate the voices and content that lives within their paid membership.
3. Create a diverse array of content
The Self-Care Space launched with an array of different kinds of content which increased their value proposition to prospective members. If you’re an online course creator a live event organizer or an online coach of some kind, that doesn’t mean you need to put all your eggs into that one basket.
Your members aren’t a hivemind. While they have similar interests, they may be drawn to different experiences. Finding a balance of easily deployable content types will help sell just how valuable this private space you’re asking people to join really is.
Sherer told us this about The Self-Care Space, “Our platform has a lot of self-guided content. So during the live events, we really try to encourage more community engagement, attendance, and participation—all with the goal of building that sense of community and connection.”
Within their community, they offer live events often, but they are presented in vastly different ways: a monthly sound bath, a healer using crystal bowls to soothe anxiety, formal lectures, group coaching, interactive workshops. Doesn’t that sound like something you can’t find just anywhere? That’s what makes their paid membership so enticing.
4. Social media still works
There’s much to be said about the pitfalls of social media, but it still works for getting eyes on your business if you use it the right way.
Going off of our lesson about building partnerships with other influential minds in your industry, this is where social media can play an indispensable role. For The Self-Care Space launch, Sherer and Wright used their Instagram accounts to promote the launch with short videos, educational content, free events, and workshops, all of which helped in getting their initial prospective members on a waitlist to join The Self-Care Space once it launched.
5. Differentiate your pricing
Pricing is a key factor in creating a large launch for your paid membership community. For The Self-Care Space, Sherer saw an opportunity to get as many people as possible into the community by offering different tiers that appealed to different demographics.
They took a 4-pronged approach to pricing:
- Monthly pricing
- Annual pricing at a discounted rate
- Lifetime pricing, something you don’t see too often, opened up a high-ticket price for people who completely bought into their methodology.
- Discounted price for members who were already part of Katrina Wright’s other paid membership community. This was incredibly successful because it allow The Self-Care Space a gateway into a community of people who already were interested in similar topics, were used to paying for memberships, and trusted Katrina Wright’s recommendations.
Follow these five lessons and you’ll be on track toward launching your own successful paid membership community. The most important thing to remember is that planning ahead and executing your strategy effectively will allow you to reap the rewards you’re dreaming of. You can’t anticipate everything that will happen, but you can put your best foot forward out of the gate with these tips.