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Tag: membership website

A membership website is any website that has a member as the minimum information unit. Membership websites require registration, which is either free or paid, depending on the website. In order to access some or all of the membership website's content, a user must sign in with the respective user information.

Five Deadly Membership Website Mistakes

Download our complimentary Membership report today and learn what every magazine, newsletter and book publisher needs to know before launching a Membership Website

6 Ways to Improve your Website Conversion Rates

Convert more website visitors into buyers or subscribers from any page on your site by using these 6 methods

Increase Email Revenue by Using Service Journalism

How to sell products while maintaining the honesty and tactical transparency required to preserve a trusting audience

How America’s Test Kitchen Makes Money Online

Some people prefer books, some the web, some magazines. By multiplatform publishing, ATK delivers users the content they want, how they want it.

12 Master Landing Page Templates

Download our new report (for free) and learn how to maximize your Internet marketing conversion rates by using the right landing page template for the job
A landing page is an indispensable component of your online marketing campaign. We define it as any webpage where you and your users begin a mutual transaction.

The end goal of a landing page can be to get users to:

Live Coverage: Mequoda Summit Session 2 – Using New Media to Expand Your Brand

How the Web’s Top Publishers are Using New Media to Build Loyal Customer Relationships

This session is based is the strategy of expanding your brand by distributing your content and repurposing via many platforms. The reason why new media is so beneficial to us is that it enables us to generate revenue by simply recycling existing content.

Live Coverage: Mequoda Summit Session 3 – Generating Website Revenue

Multiple Business Models are Required to Maximize Online Revenue

In session three, entitled Generating Website Revenue, Don revealed that there are the 12 different types of business models, or “archetypes” that a publisher uses to make money online.

Which Publishers Are Using Video

How publishers are incorporating video where it fits for them

iPaper shoots PDFs dead!

How using iPaper could increase traffic, revenue, and user appeal. If you offer PDFs on your website or membership website, you have likely gotten ripped off at one point or another. Especially if you offer a free trial to subscribers with access to your PDFs, where it’s common practice for trial subscribers to get in, download your content, and get out.

Mequoda Daily’s Favorite Blogs, Tools and Research of 2007

2007 was a great year for online publishing, and the digital world in general. Here are our favorite bits and pieces.

In light of the new year, we thought we’d give an ode to the Mequoda Daily works and research of 2007. It’s been a long year for Mequoda, with one very exciting Mequoda Summit, half a dozen webinars and seminars, new books, and TONS of new research.

It’s also been a great year for helpful online tools, so to start off, we’d like to recap on some of the wonderful tools we’ve discovered and have written an article or two about.

How to Start and Run an Effective Online Marketing System

Key components of the Mequoda Internet Marketing System

The launch and operation of a Mequoda Marketing System can be divided into four phases. Most of the steps in each phase are then repeated over and over again to build email circulation and monetize customer relationships.

The Importance of Article Landing Pages

The objective of the article landing page is to be picked up by search engines, capture the user’s interest and lead the user to a transaction.

Most website users are familiar with organic landing pages. Whether on an Internet hub, a retail site, or a membership website, organic landing pages contain content that is of interest to the user.

Generally, organic landing pages are wide open and full of content that the publisher has designed to be attractive to users and search engines. Essentially, an organic landing page is trying to get an Internet user to find it using the Google, Yahoo and MSN search engines.

Give Away All My Content?

The idea is not as crazy as it sounds. It’s an online publishing strategy.

Well, it turns out the leak was true.

The New York Times announced today that the TimesSelect premium content service is ending at midnight. Almost all of the paper’s content dating from 1851 to present will be free online starting tomorrow.

For two years NYTimes.com charged TimesSelect subscribers for access to columnists and archives. Many other parts of the website remained free during this period, making NYTimes.com a subscription and advertising based hybrid website.

A Formula for Email Marketing

This Mequoda System Operator has found high profitability with a unique Internet marketing strategy

The website and email newsletter feature updates five days a week, with editorials sent on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, and promotions sent on Tuesdays and Thursdays.”Mequoda essentially gave us the winning formula, which was to create a newsletter where 60 percent of it was editorial and 40 percent of it was marketing,” said HR Daily Advisor Managing Editor Jay Schleifer.The editorial strategy for HR Daily is what Schleifer calls the “1-2 punch” sequence, where a human resources problem is posed on Monday and Wednesday, and the solutions to those problems are delivered via a product offer on Tuesday and Thursday. Friday’s are left for stand-alone editorials.Last week, for example, an HR Daily article cited several statistics that illustrated the need for managers to provide feedback to employees. The next day’s article discussed how a BLR product helps managers constructively provide employees feedback. The “1-2 punch” strategy is proving to be very successful, Schleifer said.

Ways to Boost Website Traffic

NYTimes.com will likely boost advertising revenue if it offers more free content

The New York Times may soon stop charging readers to access premium content, according to a Tuesday New York Post article. If adopted, the strategy is sure to attract more website visitors and make NYTimes.com even more advertisement-based.

NYTimes.com currently offers all the day’s latest breaking news for free, while holding back it’s Op-Ed columns, news columnists, archives and several other features for paid subscribers.

Relentless Innovation is Coming Online

Rupert Murdoch’s newest newspaper will likely be more risky and experimental

Publishers around the country should keep an eye on The Wall Street Journal. It may be radically pursuing a new online publishing strategy in the very near future.

After four months of haggling, Rupert Murdoch convinced enough members of the Bancroft family to sell him Dow Jones & Company for $5 billion last night, essentially merging the company with his enormous News Corporation.

Generating More Online Sales Leads

The rules and guidelines to making better Lead Generation Websites

The Web may be confusing, but you can understand parts of it—and the more you understand, the more money you can make.

As we discussed yesterday, that task can seem daunting, but it’s not impossible.

Depending on how you want to monetize your website, there are various rules and strategies that will teach you about the Web and guide you to profitability.

Rules for Website Success

Cutting through chaos to find success

There is no denying it: the Internet is a confusing place.

Commerce, piracy, debate, theft, publishing, networking, research, news, war—it all happens online. It’s chaos.

When you take a step back, take a deep breath, and start making sense of what’s going on, it can seriously impact your impression of the Web. Chaos slowly becomes clarity. ROI suddenly becomes possible.

Getting Bigger Profit Margins

Rework your old content into new products in new platforms

Yesterday we discussed how creating products in many platforms can boost your profit.

If you develop a systemized approach to multiplatform publishing, you’ll cut production costs and increase your customer base—widening your profit margin.

What we did not mention yesterday is that this strategy can also greatly improve your customers’ satisfaction with your brand.

Website Editorial Strategies that Work

Your website should have incentives for visitors to return frequently

If you’re like hundreds of other publishers, you’re working both online and in print.

But how much of your total revenue comes from the Internet?

If words like “little,” “puny,” “inadequate” or “nil” are coming to mind, your publication may need a new editorial approach online.

Maps to More Income Online

Lost in the online publishing jungle? We have a map.

When bringing your publication online, you’re entering a business world unlike any other.

Yesterday’s Daily compared publishing online to navigating the Amazon. There are two ways to do it:

Slashing Paths to Online Profit

Being a pioneer doesn’t always pay

Publishing on the Internet is mostly uncharted territory, like the Amazon jungle was 150 years ago.

Some daring publishers have hacked a path to “online profitability” or “a successful membership website,” and other publishers caught a tropical disease or were bitten by a snake, killing their business before they reached their goals.

More Revenue from Better Designs

Time spent on your site and revenue are effected by site design

If you are going to have a website at all, make sure it is designed well.

Yesterday’s Daily illustrated how important website design is to conversion rates and customer satisfaction.

Every visitor to your website has a finite amount of time before they reach a breaking point and leave to a competitor’s site. Some visitors can last longer than others, but why push them?

Avoid the breaking point completely by having a good website design.

Part of a good website design is using persistent navigation. That means if a user enters your website and sees a navigation bar, that bar should be visible from almost every page on your site.

Less Confusion, More Conversion

Inconsistent website design and navigation lowers conversion rates

Since online publishing is so far from maturity, there are very few absolutes.

But one thing you can always count on is that users do not like to be confused.

When users come to your website, they want simple and consistent navigation.

The easier your website is to use, the more it will satisfy users, the more repeat visits you’ll get and the more conversions you’ll have.

Fine Woodworking Mequoda Media Brand Case Study

Taunton’s Fine Woodworking launched in 1975 as a black-and-white quarterly, followed by books on woodworking.

A few years ago, they started publishing special newsstand editions, which they now do seven times a year. Most are created from repurposed content from the magazine.

They have been producing video for 20 years and with the advent of DVDs, finally turned a profit on their video content. They also have a membership website at FineWoodworking.com.

They are now putting more emphasis on the advertising component and plan to use the same multiplatform model (or a variation of it) for their other brands

A few years ago, they started publishing special newsstand editions, which they now do seven times a year. Most are created from repurposed content from the magazine.

They have been producing video for 20 years and with the advent of DVDs, finally turned a profit on their video content. They also have a membership website at FineWoodworking.com.

Fatal Membership Website Mistake

One of the biggest problems a Membership Website can have is that it’s not a Membership Website

Membership Websites are as commonly used as they are misunderstood.

Hiding information behind a firewall with a username and password gate and charging for access does not automatically make a Membership Website.

A Membership Website should be designed to be a unique destination—not another place to provide access to your print publication’s content.

12 Points for Membership Website Success

Does your membership website measure up in all these important areas?

A membership website is not a shortcut to Internet riches. In fact, unless you consider all of these elements and execute each with precision, your membership website or online newsletter will probably fail.

Creating a PDF File of your Membership Website

If you’re promoting your online newsletter or membership website in person at a trade show or seminar, you might want to hand out CD-ROMs to potential members.

CD-ROMs are not expensive to duplicate. And they can enable a prospective membership website subscriber to experience a portion of your site’s content without having to logon to the Internet and visit the actual website.

It’s a little gimmicky, but it’s likely to grab their attention, especially if you add value by providing some other free information files on the CD-ROM.

How Good are You at Using Print to Drive Website Traffic?

Introducing the Mequoda Print Linkage Index (PLI) – a Simple Calculation that Measures How Effectively a Publisher Uses their Print Product to Drive Website Traffic

All publishers must have a plan for driving website traffic, whether that’s to beef up page views or to get people to purchase products, including access to a membership website.

Describing the Benefits of your Membership Website

Emphasizing the benefits of joining your membership website means appealing to your prospect’s self-interest

People do not subscribe or pay for access to your membership website, per se. They are really paying for the benefits of access to your membership website, or for the benefits of membership in your organization.

Features are descriptions of what premium information they will find beyond the turnstile when they join your membership website. But features are not benefits.

Fundamentals of Generating Website Revenue

Internet publishing profitability boils down to four elements

If you serve a small niche market, then generating website revenue may require creating additional information products, doing joint ventures with other entrepreneurs, and joining the affiliate programs of other Internet publishing businesses that offer quality products and services.

Recycle, Reuse, Republish

A freelance writing formula suggests a time management model for online publishing success
Years ago, long before the Internet and the birth of online publishing, my old friend Alden Todd was a full-time freelance writer.

He had a regular desk at the Library of Congress and he spent his days researching subjects about which to write books and magazine articles. Making the most of his time was essential to making a decent income. So early on he learned how to maximize every research project into at least three saleable products.

Discover How Visitors Find Your Membership Website

Offer an additional bonus to new members for information about how they found your membership website

Do you know where your best membership website traffic is coming from? Not merely the casual visitors to your home page but the serious customers who actually join your membership website?

Is it Google, Yahoo! or MSN?

How to Ethically Get Testimonials and Use Them to Add Credibility and Increase Membership

Great testimonials can be very persuasive. The value of member corroboration and its ability to get new subscribers to your membership website cannot be under-estimated.

Know this about the buying process: Whether they know it or not, everybody has a personal strategy for rationalizing his purchase decisions.

All purchase decisions are emotional, but in order to be congruent, buyers need to create reasons for their choices.

How to Build a Membership Website that Has a Sense of Urgency

When you build a membership website, provide an incentive to subscribe and offer instant gratification

Many membership website landing pages promote the overall value of their site’s content, but fail to create a sense of urgency about joining.

In broad, sweeping generalizations the landing page characterizes the content that awaits you if you join the membership website, and promises a boatload of new articles to be delivered over the course of your membership, but offers no incentive to join RIGHT NOW!

Internet Marketing Strategy: How to Protect Yourself from Fraudulent Information Products

Sad fact, but the world is full of sharks and charlatans.

For a long time now, many so-called Internet marketing gurus or experts have been making the bulk of their money selling marketing advice in the form of books, CDs, and tapes. In recent years the trend has moved to online publishing and paid membership website advice.

The Hybrid Website Archetype

Hybrid Websites come in many variations as they successfully and often unsuccessfully merge functionality from two or more of the other website archetypes and sub archetypes into a single (often confusing) user interface.

The Brand Website Archetype

Brand Websites are used by all manner of non-online product and service organizations to build brand preference for the organization’s offline products and services. Brand Websites exist to alert consumers to online and brick and mortar retailers where purchases can occur.

The Lead Generation Website Archetype

Lead Generation Websites generate revenue by providing sponsors with qualified leads. Users shop for products and services in an effort to save time and money, while the seller pays for content creation and co-branding value. Plus, the seller pays a transaction fee for each qualified lead.

The Classified Website Archetype

Classified websites generate revenue by facilitating commercial transactions between buyers and sellers of products or services. There are at least four major variations of the Classified Website Archetype; Classified Retail Websites, Classified Directory Websites, Classified Employment Websites and Classified Service Websites, all of which we will discuss in this chapter.

The Retail Media Website Archetype

Every Retail Media Website has two business goals. First, the website must allow users to buy products. Second, the website must begin a user relationship with both buyers and non-buyers that will lead to future sales.

The Membership Website Archetype

A membership website is a user driven, content-based website satellite that generates the majority of its revenues from user access fees. This website business model is similar to a book club, professional association or user group that accepts little or no advertising, relying primarily on user support.

The Internet Hub Archetype

Mequoda views Internet Hubs as one of the most important website archetypes available to a publisher. Without a well-designed, well-marketed Internet Hub, an online publisher is forced to rely on other websites and other media to drive targeted website traffic.

Using Website Archetypes to Optimize the User Experience

Choosing the right business model and supporting infrastructure for any business is a key strategy for business success.

Mequoda uses the term “archetype” to help understand and categorize kinds of sites. An archetype is a pattern or design upon which all other similar things are patterned. The Mequoda Research Team has analyzed more than 2,000 media websites and concluded there are seven primary archetypes. Each of these seven archetypes has many sub archetypes that represent significant variations in information architecture on the primary theme.

Online Publishing Strategy: Make Websites More Senior Friendly

U.S. Government Creates Guidelines

If the target market for your email newsletter or membership website is older Americans, you might want to heed this advice on senior-friendly websites from the National Institute on Aging. If fact, you might find these suggestions are worthwhile for any group squinting at the computer screen.

“Plain text, plain type, and plain terms are plainly effective ways to broaden the reach of a website to an older audience,” says the National Institute on Aging and the National Library of Medicine.

How Your Email Newsletter Can Lose Friends and Alienate Potential Customers

If breaking up is hard to do, your email newsletter could be hurting your reputation

Has this ever happened to you? You sign up for someone’s f*r*e*e email newsletter, then discover that you don’t like it or don’t have time to read it, and you can’t get off the distribution list?

That happened to me. I get a weekly email newsletter from a well-known online publisher. Except in this case, I don’t even remember signing up to receive his email newsletter.

Back to the Basics: Five Steps for Creating User-Centric Products

Publishing companies customarily operate a single website, with free content organized into various product or service areas.

The Mequoda System of content management advocates breaking up the single website into a Mequoda Internet Hub and several independent, yet interrelated, Mequoda Marketing Satellite sites.

The Mequoda SEO Process

Every good wordsmith approaches the task of writing a little differently. Some writers start with an outline or by making copious notes. Others write numerous disparate paragraphs at non-stop speed and then revisit their first draft, cutting and pasting to arrange them in a “logical” order. Still others agonize over the lead or headline and feel compelled to get them perfect before they can write a single second sentence.

America’s Test Kitchen Mequoda Case Study

How America’s Test Kitchen’s Revenues have Grown from About $15 million to an Estimated $46 million in Just Five Years… Shouldn’t you be Using the Same Strategy for Selling your Information Products on the Internet? Doesn’t your Job Depend on it?

Chris Kimball, CEO of Boston Common Press, is master of what we now call multiplatform publishing. Chris has gone from a publishing a single cooking magazine, Cook’s Illustrated to a growing media empire that spans books, another print magazine, books, membership websites, a TV Show on PBS, email newsletters and DVDs.

Make your Email Signup Box as Noticeable as Possible

We recently reviewed a membership website, www.ArtisticThreadWorks.com, that offers a free weekly embroidery newsletter called “Bobbin-Buzz”. We would consider this free email newsletter the Mequoda hub of this membership website.

For a needlecraft hobbyist, the offer is practically irresistible. Every week, the publishers of “Bobbin-Buzz” and ArtisticThreadWorks.com award one free email subscriber a $25 gift card to the online fabric and craft store Joann.com. Plus, every week, subscribers to Bobbin-Buzz get free designs, great articles, inspiration and more.