Today is a huge day here at CLD because my monthly membership is FINALLY here after months of hard work.
Up until this point, I’ve been very open-and-honest about starting a monthly membership (you can listen to about transitioning my business to hear more about that) but I’ve kept the name of the membership a secret. Until now.
Drum roll please...
The Brand Gathering! I will get more into the specifics of how that name came to be later in this episode because today I am taking you behind-the-scenes of creating a monthly membership. I am going to take you step-by-step and let you in how certain decisions were made. My hope is this will help you navigate how to plan and create new services yourself whether it’s a monthly membership yourself, a group coaching program, new service offering, etc.
Okay -- so let’s dive in -- Currently, I am a member of 3 different memberships. I’ve been a part of 2 more in the past but decided to leave those.
So, this is how the membership came to be....
When I realized I really enjoyed memberships, how low-cost they are and filled with good content and a helpful community I was hooked. I’ve been trying to decide for a while now how to help biz owners who couldn’t afford a 3000+ service. I see a lot of creatives who have so much potential but not the finances. A monthly membership sounded perfect.
The first thing I did after deciding on creating a monthly membership was decided what the membership would cover. I geek out over marketing, branding, website strategy and systems -- basically everything to do with running a PROFITABLE business. What lights me up is helping others see their potential and make more money doing what they absolutely love.
A lot of business owners I know seem to be overwhelmed by all the things they think they NEED to be doing as a biz owner. They end up getting paralysis and not taking action on anything.
I was like ‘Okay -- I am going to help them take one aspect of their business each month. We will spend a full-month covering that topic, polishing up and mastering that part of their business then next month we will move on to the next.’ The main value of this membership that lead every decision was the fact that I don’t want to add more crap to your to-do list. I want to spend time on things that will actually move the needle in your business.
After deciding that, the next thing I did was create a list of everything I did and didn’t like about the other memberships I have been a part of. For example, I like getting a lot of FaceTime with the membership leader. Obviously, there the expert and I like to ask questions and get personalized advice from them. So, I knew I wanted a membership where I was heavily involved.
I was a part of a membership in the past where they released content throughout the month, jsut whenever. There wasn’t a set schedule. I like when content comes out of a certain date so I can plan, prepare and get excited! The Brand Gathering will have an action plan (I am calling a brand manual) that will be delivered to members on the 1st of every month.
After I wrote down a long list of thing I like and didn’t like. The next thing I did was take it to my people. I created of survery of things I wanted to know and get their opinion on.
What people felt they were struggling with so I was covering content that would be of value to them
What they would be willing to pay for a membership of sorts
What they would be most excited about inside the membership
For example, I really enjoy hot seats, which is basically a coaching session with one person where everyone tunes in and takes the advice and applies it to their own biz. I originally planned to one each month. I found others weren’t as excited about hot seats so I went from planning one of doing one each month to each quarter so I could focus on other things like Mini-courses, which most were excited about.
Alright -- so taking all this information into account, reviewing surveys and talking to people in my community and mentors. I decided what was going to be included in the monthly membership:
Monthly action plans (The first Monday of every month, you’ll receive a curated blueprint with actionable, concrete steps to help grow your business, strengthen your brand, and sign more clients.)
Monthly mini-trainings (Topic-specific, bite-sized courses will be posted monthly giving members a quick overview on a new piece of tech, a new tactic, or a fun facet of branding and social media to try out every month.)
Guest-Expert Trainings (We’re bringing in the best, more influential experts we know to provide exclusive, behind-the-scenes insights on how to create thriving and revenue-generating businesses in way that is easy to understand and implement.)
Exclusive FB Community (All members will receive access to our exclusive Brand Gathering Facebook group where they can collaborate, network, and get on-demand help from other creatives. )
Office Hours (specific days where they will be a zoom hangout and people can come and go to ask questions specific to their biz)
Quarterly Hot Seats (This is where we take a deep dive into your brand identity and overall strategy to help you identify the key areas where you need to focus on in order to get results that matter.)
You may have thought I did this earlier but up until this point, the monthly membership didn’t have a name. My first thought was to call it The Brand-Aid but after researching the domain wasn’t available. So, I went to the drawing board. I wrote down words and started looking up synonyms. Long story short, I landed on The Brand Gathering and it couldn’t be more perfect. I go into further detail about why the name means so much to me in the First Issue of The Brand Manual.
Now, that we officially have a name, The Brand Gathering, we’ve mapped out what the membership includes, who it’s for… it was time to research platforms. How was TBG going to come to life.
Going back to the core value of not putting more crap on your to-do list, I wanted to keep TBG simple. That meant easy-to-navigate and understand what was going on within the membership.
I am loyal to Showit so I really wanted to keep the membership on their platform. So I first looked into Memberpress, Membernouse. Plug-ins for WP. As always when dealing with WP, they seemed overly complicated for both the designer and the user.
I remembered hearing on Amy Porterfield's podcast about Memberspace for SS so I decided to check it out. After options like Gumroad and Podia fell through. I wanted a membership area and those options didn’t allow for what I was imagining in my head.
I wanted the website to have a login and host everything in one place. Memberspace was easy to add, it was easy to design everything in and I could make it easy for members to navigate. It checked all the boxed so I decided to use Memberspace on a SS website.
After that, finally I was ready to start working on the first month’s content. I bought a huge easel sketch pad and started plotting down ideas using information from the surveys I had originally taken.
Honestly, I’ve been so excited about TBG and how it’ll help biz owns this whole process took about 3-4 months.
The last thing I did was decide how to launch and promote it. I decided on a one-week real big push. I planned ahead of time so this podcast episode, emails to my list, social media posts, YouTube videos, IGTV videos all are promoting TBG.
I created good, better, best goals which I am revealing in a new Monthly Biz Review blog series I am launching tomorrow (link in show notes)
My goal is to have 30 members before Sept. 1 so anyone who signs up before Sept 1st gets $10 off their first month of membership. Making it just $10 to join. You can use the code ‘Podcast’ to get receive $10 off. Go to thebrandgathering.com to enter the promo code.
Hopefully, this behind-the-scenes look will help you launch your new service in a more streamlined process. I hope to see you inside TBG! Until next time!