Subscription or Product Funnel?

10 replies
I've been preparing to market a course, and I need some help on deciding whether to go with a subscription or a front-end product.

Can anyone share the pros (or cons), or what you would personally do?

My niche has absolutely nothing to do with finance or money, so it'll be nice to have some opinions outside the "mmo" market too.
#funnel #product #subscription
  • Profile picture of the author dengkane
    Will you have enough content for a membership site? If no, you'd better prepare an e-book or short report.

    Maybe you will find subscription business opportunities after you sell your e-books/reports.
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    • Profile picture of the author Andre Slater
      Why not your front end product, then upsell to your membership site giving more continuous monthly content?
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      • Profile picture of the author Reckoned
        Originally Posted by Andre Slater View Post

        Why not your front end product, then upsell to your membership site giving more continuous monthly content?
        Oh that sounds like a good idea...

        Do you have experience with a continuity upsell? I'm not too sure on how to go about doing it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ron Killian
    I would say membership or continuity would be the best way to go, after all, it's month payments, v.s. one off sales. Course as dengkane asked, will you have enough content to keep updating?

    For sure a good idea by Andre, upselling the membership. Have a low cost front end product to get them in your funnel. Along the same lines, what seems to be working for me is offering a low cost trial membership, like $1 for a week. Another way to get them "in".
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    • Profile picture of the author aurettemag
      Originally Posted by Ron Killian View Post

      I would say membership or continuity would be the best way to go, after all, it's month payments, v.s. one off sales. Course as dengkane asked, will you have enough content to keep updating?

      For sure a good idea by Andre, upselling the membership. Have a low cost front end product to get them in your funnel. Along the same lines, what seems to be working for me is offering a low cost trial membership, like $1 for a week. Another way to get them "in".
      Thanks. Nice post from expert.
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    • Originally Posted by Ron Killian View Post

      I would say membership or continuity would be the best way to go, after all, it's month payments, v.s. one off sales.
      Most people dont realize that the average Joe wont stay for more than 3 or 4 months on average. Attrition rates on info-based membership sites are huge, no matter how awesome your content is.

      My advice? pack it up as a home study course with a juice price tag, do a product launch, get a fat check, and move on.
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      • I think for the reasons mentioned above, ie an ongoing income and therefore less work involved in finding new customers every month, the continuity membership site is the ultimate goal of many in the online arena.

        However as pointed out, the average retention period is 3-4 months for a standard open ended membership. Therefore one trick that has been proven to work is to set the membership for a predefined period of time (eg 12 months).

        This has the advantage that the member is more likely to stay signed up, as they can see an end point.

        Also if you know that you only need 12 months worth of material, it is far less stressful that knowing you are going to constantly produce material on an ongoing basis.

        You can of course create another 12 months membership afterwards which you can promote to your existing members once they reach the end of their first membership.
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        • Profile picture of the author Brantley Whitley
          I think you've gotten some great advice from quite a few other members here but I'll add my two cents as well.

          I've been a part of quite a few info-based memership/continuity programs over the years, some great, some not so great. In each case of the ones that were really great, the program owner provided a great front end offer that blew everyone away, typically had a forum where they actively participated and then at some point down the road added an up-sell to a continuity program.

          I'm not sure there's an exact formula that they all had in common necessarily but in each case the common thread was that the product owner spent time developing relationships with their customers. And...

          Over time demonstrated that they actually cared about their customers success. That's the key.
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  • Profile picture of the author Johnny Slater
    The best method would be take one part of your course and write a short report about it. Offer the report for free or a few dollars and upsell the membership as a complete solution.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kenster
    Originally Posted by Reckoned View Post

    I've been preparing to market a course, and I need some help on deciding whether to go with a subscription or a front-end product.

    Can anyone share the pros (or cons), or what you would personally do?

    My niche has absolutely nothing to do with finance or money, so it'll be nice to have some opinions outside the "mmo" market too.

    It depends on many different things, but as a general rule, most marketers I see lead into continuity somewhere in the funnel/backend. In many niches, it's harder to convert continuity on the front than going one time lead-gen on the front with continuity behind.
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