That is my observation after signing up for the 7-day trial of Teaching Sells yesterday. I spent the whole day, up to this morning checking out the site's content.
(Note that I tried this program for two months, May to June 2008, and already unsubscribe from it.)
I was skeptic when I first heard of the program last December. I've been operating a paid club membership site, that started in December 2003. I capitalize on personal connections and knowledge in building it. It is challenging to sustain a community especially as some members will outgrow you, sooner or later.
When Teaching Sells came out, I partly got worried as those who'll be taking the program might assume that it is an easy thing to do, "just like that", and offer it at a price like $97 per month which I find to be expensive.
However, after checking out the Teaching Sells program yesterday, I finally realize where its value is and learned a lot from it.
- The program presents the necessary components in order to build a training program on the Web. It utilized a combination of audio, presentations, and text to discuss this.
- The site has a library where around 300 e-books are available for download. The said resource can be used by members to understand the business of paid content and pick up materials that can be useful for their own endeavors.
- The site also has an affiliate program where a minimum referral of 3 members may already be sufficient to sustain your monthly membership in the site. It also plans to have a private label program soon.
- I partly believe that the subject "online teaching" is limited looking at the materials available at the site. By the time I reached the advanced courses, I felt a sense of repetition and the content approach begins to sound like an "academic" paper. I'm sure that the pressure for content developers are high.
- Will the subscribers stay long in the site? The only incentive I see for staying long is if there are new upcoming exciting programs and/or the affiliate program started working for the member - where the monthly fees required are already met by the affiliate commission.
- Program for advance members. I think there'll be folks who'll be joining the program that have started their own paid membership programs already. Our concerns may already be different and e-books on private label rights offered by some of the known Internet marketing gurus are not enough.
- A community badge.
Something that can attest that a paid membership site program has been reviewed and recognized in the Teaching Sells community. As the badge points to an affiliate link, those who are curious to build one of their own may take the program. I haven't seen a body that reviews paid membership-based sites at this time.
- Marketing opportunities.
Promote members and help them grow like having member sites who joined the program be listed in a page or have their banners appear in rotation to the founders' high profile sites. I think that will be beneficial and helpful for members.
As to the ideas I picked up, I got inspired to start updating my club membership site this weekend to add the following sections:
- e-commerce glossary
- E-Commerce for Entrepreneurs book chapters and make them as actual training pages (with links to the forum for Q&A)
- Blogging from Home book chapters and make them as actual training pages (with links to the forum for Q&A)
- offer a one-month, three-months, six-months membership fee choices as I will increase the fees after posting the materials above.
- Challenges in running a paid membership site
- Creating Valuable Free Prizes to Boost Success Chances
- The Secret: 13 Years of Freelancing
- 14 Challenges in Staying Remarkable
- Focusing on social objects for success
- Autoresponders - important tool for community development
- Building closer connection through book giving
- Lessons Learned in Launching and Operating a Membership Only Site