(Part I) How to Reduce Churn and Keep Members Engaged, with Diana Tower (Membership Series) - Rick Mulready

rick mulready

(Part I) How to Reduce Churn and Keep Members Engaged, with Diana Tower (Membership Series)

January 12, 2022

Do you want to reduce churn in your membership? Do you want to improve your members’ engagement and their membership experience?

My guest on the podcast is going to teach you how to keep your members and your community engaged, and give you practical advice on reducing your membership’s churn.

Today, I’m talking with Diana Tower. She’s a membership community strategist. She specializes in teaching community managers and creators how to increase engagement, reduce churn, and foster communities that people love being a part of.

Before starting her own business, Diana was the community manager for Ramit Sethi, author of I Will Teach You to Be Rich, and founder of GrowthLab.com.

Diana is a ton of fun to talk to. This interview lasted nearly an hour and a half. I was writing pages and pages of notes while she shared her insights.

In fact, there are so many good takeaways from our talk, that I’m going to split this interview into two parts.

Part one is this episode, and part two will be next week.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • What to avoid when managing your community
  • How to set expectations when starting a membership business
  • Setting boundaries for your membership’s features
  • Tips for helping your members get the most from their membership
  • How to create a safe community for your members
  • Strategies for reducing churn in your membership
  • Lessons from Diana’s failed launch

Links & Resources:

Diana Tower’s Links:

**This is an affiliate link so if you decide to purchase, I get a small commission. Thanks so much, in advance!

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Other Episodes You’ll Enjoy:

Your Membership Questions Answered (Membership Series)

How to Legally Protect Your Membership (and Yourself) with Autumn Witt Boyd and Chanteé Hallett

Membership Case Study: How Hallie Sherman Added $10K/mo With a New Membership


Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Diana:
It was a failed launch because I didn’t make any sales, but I would say it’s probably one of my most successful launches because I had all my emails batched, I automated the sales process, I figured out that the offer isn’t positioned properly and how to shift that up, and now I can go and do that.

So, yeah, it was definitely not the lunch that I was expecting, but I’m really grateful that that’s the way it unfolded.

[00:00:56] Rick:
Alright. What’s up, my friends. Welcome back to the show. Thank you so much for tuning in, as always. Hopefully you can tell by my voice that I’m so excited about my guest today and next week, because this is a part one. We’re continuing our membership series here on the podcast.

Today, we’re talking about how to reduce churn and increase retention. Joining me is Diana Tower. I was introduced to Diana through my diversity, equality, and inclusion consultants, Erica Courdae and India Jackson. They were like, “You’ve got to talk to Diana. She is amazing when it comes to community management and engagement.”

So, she’s a membership community strategist, and she specializes in teaching you or your community manager how to keep members engaged, how to reduce churn, and foster a community where people just simply love being a part of it. Diana was also the community manager for Ramit Sethi, before creating a business for herself, helping people around the world.

She is super smart when it comes to community management and engagement. She’s a ton of fun to talk to. We ended up talking in this initial interview for about an hour and 20 minutes. I was just taking notes constantly while we’re chatting. When we got to the end, I was like, holy cow, this is chock full of tactical things, tactical strategies that you can go and implement right away.

I decided rather than give you an hour and 20 minutes of so many things that you can go and test that can reduce churn and increase retention, and just create an amazing community in your membership, that I would break it up into two parts. Part one today and part two next week with Diana Tower. So, today we’re gonna be talking about how to reduce churn and keep members engaged.

Now, before we dive into it with her, if you are an established online course creator or membership creator, or you’re an online coach, and you’re already making at least 100K a year in your online business, and you’re looking to scale, you’re looking to take things to the next level, but you’re not really sure what to be doing. You’re overwhelmed. You’re stuck. Maybe you need to build a team. Maybe you want to improve your sales and marketing, or your systems and processes, et cetera. I want to invite you to learn more and apply—it’s application only—for our Accelerator coaching program.

Go to RickMulready.com/Accelerator. After I chatted with Diana, I was like, I got to get you to do a private training for our Accelerators. Which at the time I’m recording this, she’s doing that this coming week during our virtual retreat. She’s just amazing. So I’m going to stop talking now. Let’s dive right into it.

Part one, with Diana Tower.

So, you just had a launch, and you’re telling me that it didn’t go quite as planned.

[00:04:09] Diana:
No most would call it a failed most people would be like, my launch didn’t work because I had my first no sale launch. Obviously people, no sales, zero sales. so after I gave myself, I gave myself a moment because obviously we’re in, you know, we’re we want to make sales when we launch things.

But after that moment, I went into curiosity mode to figure out like, okay, why? Like, why didn’t anybody buy? And so I sent out some emails and a survey and it was, I kept getting exactly the same answer. Which to me feels kind of like cheating, but everyone was like, man, you know, I just didn’t really have time.

Or it was a really, quite a high price point. If you just had a prerecorded program for like 500 bucks, I totally would’ve bought. And I’m like, wait,

[00:04:58] Rick:
Wait, wait. So what was it offer?

[00:05:02] Diana:
So here’s the, the, so it was like 12 weeks live training, lots of coaching, small intimate group. you know, and the price point was, 29 97, like full on big that’s the way I like to roll. I like, you know, full on, get my brain into whatever people are working on. Lots of support and yeah, like for community management, training. So for memberships, right? So you’ve got this paid membership. You’re either the host, that’s doing things, wearing all the hats yourself, and you want to do it more strategically or you want to train your VA or your company manager team member to do that for you.

And Yeah, it was really interesting. It kind of like, I kept getting more And more replies to my emails with the same thing. So then I sent another email saying, Hey, someone suggested that I create a prerecorded program, 500 price point. What do you think about that? And that’s when people were like, oh my gosh, that sounds amazing.

Are you doing it? When are you launching it? Like, so the reaction was really positive and it kind of helped me connect dots because I then looked at the industry. Right. And I thought, well, let’s look at the competitors. What are they doing again? Like, let’s go check and see it’s all prerecorded price points.

500 to $750. I’m like, what the Like, why was I trying to go this way? When. This is kind of, this is the ecosystem of that was that I was in. And so it, so like I said, it was a failed launch because I didn’t make any sales, but it was, I would say it’s probably one of my most successful launches because I had all my emails, batched, I automated the sales process.

I figured out that like the offer isn’t positioned properly and how to shift that up and now I can go and do that. So, so yeah, it was definitely not the lunch that I was expecting, but, I’m really grateful, but that’s the way it kind of unfolded.

[00:06:55] Rick:
This was the first time you’ve launched this program.

[00:06:58] The Art of Online Business – 564 and 566 – split PROCESSED: No,

[00:06:58] Diana:
This is the fourth time I’ve done this program. So it’s always been live and it’s just, it’s sort of, I’ve been doing it with live groups. And so I launched it probably two or three years ago. Then I did another group and I was consistently getting about 10 people because my audience is quite small.

It just every time I was doing it, I was getting more feedback. It was really interesting because the feedback I was getting was that they wanted more implementation. They wanted more support. So I kept expanding the program and increasing the price. And so then with this last, what was it before? It was eight weeks and then I shifted it to 12.

And then that was kind of, I guess, like the breaking point where people were like, it’s not like it’s not meeting their needs. So, so yeah, it was just, it’s been really interesting, but of course, right now I’m sitting here thinking like I have the program it’s recorded. I just have to put, package it up.

And then

[00:07:58] Rick:
The, why don’t you send them a link, create an order, form, price it, send them a link and say, Hey, you asked for it, enroll now. And it’ll be ready, whatever, November 1st or however long you need. Yeah. it’s kind of like, a, put your money, put your money where your mouth is sort of thing.

[00:08:17] Diana:
Yeah, exactly.

It’s like, you’re, pre-selling it essentially. You’re saying, Hey, you say you want this, but let’s put some money on the table to prove it. And you’re totally right. And it’s so funny. Cause even like, as I’m sitting here, my brain is saying it’s too easy It’s too easy?

[00:08:32] Rick:
Well, that’s What you told me earlier.

Right? Because before we hit record, you’re like, I feel like it’s cheating. I feel like it’s like, wait, as quote unquote, all you want is prerecorded. Go through it on your own time. That’s too easy that we think

[00:08:47] Diana:
That. But if we flip it, like what if it were that easy? What if that’s all they really want?

They want the training so they can watch it whenever the it. Yup. And on their schedule, they can binge it in a week or they can set it up, you know, for a six week sort of thing. And it works on their schedule. It doesn’t matter if they’re in Australia, there’s nothing live, it’s all there. So I think it’s for me for that second

[00:09:12] Rick:
Tier of coaching and support, if somebody wants it,

[00:09:17] Diana:
That’s the idea.

So this is like snowball. I was like, this kind of has shifted my whole business model. So I’m like, okay, well, if I have like, you know, the $500 course, I could then have a coaching membership on the backend where it’s like, Hey, do you want to have monthly coaching with me? Boom, joined them. Right. So it feels like, like I said, it was just really, really a learning launch.

So I like, if you’re, if you’re not winning, you’re learning. Right. It’s like that expression, you know? And so I really feel like, learn a of a

[00:09:48] Rick:
Lot. All right. So when is the link going to go out when. Send it. Yeah. What are you going to create it? When are you going to send it out? Well, when are you going to have the videos ready?

We’re recording this the first week of October, right?

[00:10:11] Diana:
I know. Right? Well, let’s see. So everything is technically everything is recorded. It’s all in the hub. I’m just splicing it up. So, I mean, where are we ready? mid-October. I could probably get this done for like beginning of November and like send it out to my list and say, Hey, but I can actually, no, I think the link to actually pre-buy notice what I did there.

I was like,

[00:10:35] Rick:
Wednesday, this can be done by Friday.

[00:10:39] Diana:
That is true. That is true. And I already technically have the thrive cart page made. It’s already

[00:10:48] Rick:
Just say, Hey, I’ll listen to your feedback. So I’m in the process now of, of just organizing the videos in a, in a, whatever in a better way for you. Here’s the link.

As soon as it’s ready, which is going to be this time. Grab your star now.

[00:11:02] Diana:
Boom. I’m just gonna take that, transcribe it, put it

[00:11:06] Rick:
In my email. Yeah. You’re going to have what you’re going to have with this recording here. Now you’re going to have a membership on the back end of it. That’s coaching. I love the idea.

Do you know how to manage that community from a community management perspective?

[00:11:23] Diana:
Well, here’s the fun part is that I, so right now I actually technically do have, I have a mastermind. So I went, so for my previous versions of the uni you, the program, I launched the mastermind. It’s a high high-end mastermind, it’s a smaller group.

And so there is community there. I will say that community is it’s much harder to do when it’s your own. And I think that this is what actually most of my clients run into. So like when you’re the membership owner and you’re trying to manage it and wear all the hats, you start to overthink a lot of things.

And you also, you’re trying to balance, so I talk about like coaching versus community. So this idea that answering questions does not foster connection and community. Okay. Answering questions is coaching. And so this idea that when you’re the whole. You, you feel obligated to answer questions? Cause you’re usually the expert or you’re the person that’s in there that has the knowledge. And so it can be really hard to balance those hats and to find a way, like, how do I show up as the host and answer questions and coach versus how do I show up as a community manager and facilitate the connection between between other members? So if I take myself out of this and I pretend I’m talking about somebody else so much easier,

[00:12:41] Rick:
I didn’t know you.

I was actually kind of jokingly asked you that question kind of, because this is your expertise and exactly what we’re gonna be talking about here today. But I’m so glad you bring this up because so many of us take on that role of, oh, I have this community, I have this membership. I don’t have a separate quote, unquote community manager.

How do I, yeah, how do I do.

[00:13:09] Diana:
Yeah, it’s really hard. And I can speak from personal experience, even for myself. Like usually I’ve been the community manager for other people. So I was the key manager for me, safety and his coaching membership. I’ve supported other community managers. So when it’s somebody else’s baby, it’s much easier to really focus in and put blinders on and focus on community and connection.

But when you’re the host and you’re thinking about everything, and you’re thinking about your bottom line, and you’re thinking about all the things and somebody asks the question, your knee-jerk reaction is to jump in there and answer it. And as a community manager, you shouldn’t be doing that. You should be looking to foster connections with other members, helping other members jump in and support other members and facilitating connections and this sort of thing.

And so it’s something that, that I talk about in my program is. So like taking a step back and actually figuring out, like, how do you want to show up in your community? Do you want to be in there every day? Do you want to be on like, on the weekends, in the evenings, like having some structure, having some boundaries to when you’re showing up, but also how, like, do you want to, if you’re a, for example, if you’re in a Facebook group, do you want to host a Facebook live once a week and answer questions?

Do you want to sprinkle knowledge in the comments? Do you want to not be in there at all? Like, these are all questions that people don’t really ask them. So they sort of, like you said, they just jump in and they’re like, okay, cool. I’ve got a membership, I’ve got to have a community. Cause people, you know, they come for the content, they stay for the community, but like engage, like do your thing.

And you know, people just sorta think that people are going to engage and do their own thing. and it can be incredibly frustrating and really draining, when things aren’t working. So when things are a little bit quiet or you’re always jumping in and you feel like the engine, but then you don’t really know what else you should be doing.

[00:14:58] Rick:
There’s so much there. I want to unpack because this is what you just described is so common for so many people. And I’ve gone through this myself in the past as well. It’s just like we have, you know, we have this community, we have, this membership, if you will. and we. feel like our members are expecting us, meaning the creator, the leader, quote, unquote, to be the one, answering the questions. And we almost feel this pressure of somebody asks a question and oh, I have to, I have to jump right in and get back to them. Otherwise they’re going to be unhappy and then leave. Right. Right. So how do we, instead of that, what kind of mindset should we. Kind of begin to create for ourselves to have a different approach so that we’re not like, oh my God, they’re going to leave if I don’t do this.

[00:15:53] Diana:
Yeah. Well, what I would do first is I would, I would take a step back and I would actually look at the expectations that you’re saying. So what expectations do your members have when they join? And so like when I T so we talked about onboarding as well. So onboarding is super important because you’re setting up the expectations, right?

Like what’s going to happen here. What’s going to go on in this community. but when I talk about onboarding, it’s not just the emails of welcoming people in, I’m talking about like your sales page, I’m talking about the free content you’re sharing and who you’re attracting. Like, we go all the way back to figure out, like, what expectations are you setting?

So for example, one of the biggest mistakes is people will sell the community as like a coaching plan. Right. They say, oh yeah, come and get your questions answered, come and get direct access to me. And so if you look at the sales page or you look at the content, that’s promoting it, you can see these kinds of red flags where it’s like, Ooh, like you’re setting the expectation really high.

Whereas you can simply switch that out and say, you know, join this amazing, space to connect with peers or support one another and not be alone. like you want to, put the positioning or the focus on something that’s not, you know, come and get direct access to me. Because another issue with that is that if you have a higher end offer, you start cannibalizing that because you’re coaching in your membership and people are like, why would I join your higher end coaching?

Because I get all my questions answered here. so I’d say, you know, taking a step back and like asking yourself, like, what are the, what’s the expectations that I’m setting. And then once you’ve identified that. Asking yourself, what do I want the expectation to be? And are they aligned? And if they’re not, you have to change them.

And this is probably one of the biggest issues and the discomfort that people feel around community is that when you have to change expectations, especially when you’re taking something away, people don’t like it, even if they’re not using it. Right. So imagine you have lots of coaching calls and you realize that people aren’t coming to five of them and you’re like, okay, let’s eliminate five coaching calls.

Now you somehow have to tell people in your membership that you’re removing five coaching calls, even though they’re not using it, but you have to find a way to position it, that it benefits them. And that this is actually a good thing for them. and so, yeah, I would just say focus on positioning things and making it so that it’s, it’s a community, it’s a peer to peer connection that you’re not going to be in there 24 7, you know?

And so that’s again, like figuring out your boundaries, like how are you going to be showing up. But then also deciding like what you want the space to be and just really presenting it that way.

[00:18:30] Rick:
So, okay, so you’ve set the expectations, like what the community is and is not, I want to go back to, so, cause a lot of people there, especially with Facebook groups, right. And I want to kind of circle back to that and get your thought on Facebook groups.

Especially considering the circumstances of a few days ago at the time of recording corniness, where everything went down, a buddy of mine was launching and he was launching in a Facebook group. that was the first morning. but you know, a lot of what you hear, a lot of people talk about is. Post silly sort of easy questions for people to answer.

So that it’s like a one word to kind of create more engagement and kind of play the algorithm a little bit so that more and more content pops up. Now, I want you to kind of like expand way beyond that and let’s define what actual, creating engagement in a community and really like managing the community.

Like what does that mean actually in your mind?

[00:19:39] Diana:
Yes. Okay. So there’s so much, so first of all, like I think this whole thing of like, yes, no posts put emoji, drop a Jif, these kinds of things. Sort of like you’re sprinkling some cheese on top, you know, to kind of get Facebook to play. Nice. I would say that that adds little to nothing in terms of helping your members actually connect with each other. I think as well, just like on the back end of all this, like, so when, when you’re looking at managing and community, essentially what you’re trying to do is help people kind of let their guard down and feel safe and connect with other human beings, on the same journey. Right? So they’re, you know, they have the same goal.

But we’re also looking at like in terms of strategy, it’s all about emotions, right? So we want to amplify or trigger positive emotions, but we also want to minimize and avoid, you know, quote unquote negative emotions. And so when you’re looking at, engaging a community, So like. I don’t know, Like, there’s this, there’s a lot of like a lot of people focus on numbers.

They’re like, okay, we like, this has the numbers. We have to hit the numbers. and it’s all about numbers. I’m not that type of person I’m like in terms of approaching a community, I’m much more let’s, let’s observe this, space and see what people are doing and let’s create more opportunities for them to do those things.

So it’s, a little bit more. Like, for example, like when I approach engagement content, you know, I, it’s not just what I think and What I like. Okay. I’m going to write something. It’s actually going into the community and, looking at posts and observing and kind of breaking them down And looking at, okay, why did this person posts this, what emotional, like what emotion is being satisfied? what information is happening? What are other people feeling as they’re reading this and sort of like breaking it into parts. and so actually, like I did this on one of my coaching calls once and we looked at, a community cause someone was really struggling. They were like, I don’t know how to like what we should be posting. and we looked at a post and we came up with like 20 different posts ideas from this one post that a member had posted. And I think that there’s, There’s a lot of experimentation with engagement and content and people don’t like it. So the idea that you have to create something and you put it out there and you see what happens and you’ll see if people engage with it or you’ll see if people don’t.

And so I think that if you want to actually create a space where people like feel something and they actually feel a part of your community, you really need to approach it with like a more human sort of approach. It’s not just, okay, we’ve got to get people to engage. We need to boost numbers. We need to get all these numbers into a certain box. It’s more, how can we make people feel the way they need to feel so that they will not want to leave? you know, that they’ll feel safe And that they’ll actually connect. with other members. And I think it’s, it’s something from a business perspective that a lot of business owners overlook. They don’t give it a lot of merit because it’s very diff it’s like an octopus, like putting a diaper on an octopus.

It’s like you do this. And it’s very difficult to prove that you like you writing this post actually impacted the bottom line. It’s very difficult to connect. But whereas if you, you know, you change the copywriting on your sales page and you boost sales by X percent, that’s much more, it’s easier. so I would S I would say that just in terms of approaching community, it’s, at least my approach is being very strategic and very intentional, but also just really focusing on, like, these are humans.

These are people that are trusting you, and you’re creating this space and you want to make it the best space for them to actually achieve the goals that they want to achieve. That’s kind of the way I.

[00:23:42] Rick:
I love that. And I’m just like, just letting that sink all in. Can you share an example of, well, I mean, there’s like I’m district notes on like four different things.

I want to try to try to break down for like example wise, but like, what’s the example of that one, where there was, you know, one of your students, they had a post in their community, and then you could say, oh, this is like 15 or 20 different pieces of, posts that you could do to do X or Y.

[00:24:10] Diana:

So, I mean like, do you want me to kind of break down the thought processes?

[00:24:15] Rick:
Yeah, let’s do both, like, what’s an example of that, type of post that, whomever posted there that you could look at and say, oh, you know what, there’s actually a whole bunch of things you could take from that and use to create.

You know, whatever connection, safety, et cetera, within the community. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:24:33] Diana:
So what I normally will do as well, so like if I’m going to go into a community, so I focused on observation a lot. Right. It’s not necessarily that you’re taking action, so you’re going in and you’re just sort of like, what’s going on.

Like, let’s take, you’re sort of casing the joint sort of thing. And so imagine you have a post that a lot of people are commenting on or they’re reacting to, you can see that there’s engagement. That to me is like, okay, cool. Like, let’s take a look at this post and try and break it down. And it’s, it’s interesting because I know like my brain moves very quickly, so it’s almost like trying to break it down into like a process is sometimes difficult.

But I would say that the first thing that I try and do is I look for information. So like, is there information that they’re asking about? Like, what’s the question, what’s the answer that they’re looking for? So then imagine if, I believe. The person that I, the example I was using before was for photo managers.

So they help people organize their photos and do it all online, this sort of thing. And so I think the question was, Something about like a new system that they were using, or they’re asking about a process or they’re dealing with a client and they don’t know how to respond these types of things.

First of all, it’s just like the knowledge, right? So it’s like identify knowledge. And so an example of a post that I would, if I were the community manager, I would go in and I would say, Hey, you know, last week Veronica posted this really fascinating posts and I’m going to trigger the emotions for Veronica, right.

She’s going to feel like, Ooh, she’s getting spotlighted. She has an depending on the emotional needs. Right? Like, so I, we talk about like community vibe. So like what’s, what are the emotional needs of your members? And imagine they want to feel proud of themselves. So I would trigger that a little bit and make her feel proud, like, okay, Veronica asked an amazing question last week and I would talk about it a little bit and then I might share some information.

So it’s like, she, she asked this really specific question. And so now here’s the thing, my, my knee-jerk reaction would be to coach, right. To answer the question, to like provide the information, but that’s not the point. The point is to facilitate conversation. So take a step back and say, okay, Maybe there are three people, you know, that have had this situation happen before you can tag them in and you’re going to be making them feel pretty amazing.

Like, Hey, I want your perspective, right? Like you, you experienced this before. Wow. You remember that? Right. So those people are going to feel certain things, and you’re, you’re facilitating the conversation or you obviously can sprinkle in your own 2 cents, but you, the purpose of the post is to, to, get people talking about that in another post. And then also what’s happening is you’ll you’ll have witnesses, right? The other members that are seeing, oh, like Dinah’s paying attention or the team is paying attention to when these people post and then she’s pulling in all these other people, like, I want to feel special or I want to be recognized.

So then you’re going to be encouraging people to perform those actions, posting, answering questions, sharing experiences. And so that would be just one example, in terms of a post that’s related to information. the other really big thing that I look at is for, like sharing. So when somebody shares something, especially when it’s really hard or embarrassing or, there’s any strong emotion.

What I would do in that case is I would then again, highlight that person really like congratulate the member, think that like say, you know, last week, Jason, he shared that he was struggling, with clients, with the photo manager clients, and he had this conversation and he shared it here. Here’s a link.

Three people jumped in and offered some really great advice. Boom, boom, boom, treating those people as well. maybe you miss that post, but let’s have a discussion. Let’s talk about, you know, when was a situation where you felt, frustrated or unheard or whatever, whatever that kind of the emotional side of it is, again, encouraging people to share and open up because it’s not just the people that are sharing and engaging that, that you’re, you’re influencing.

It’s also people that are reading. And they’re saying, oh my gosh, like, you know, Rick had the same experience that I had. So even though they’re not engaging, it’s not measurable. It’s not in the numbers, they’re having an experience and they’re realizing, wow, I really connect with Rick and they don’t do anything.

And maybe the next time you post, they might reply or they tag you in because they know you’ve had that experience. So I would say it’s, like for my approach, at least it’s very like organic it’s in the moment. It’s. This is what’s happening. What’s the emotion or what’s the information, or what’s the common sort of thread that other people can then share or help.

This is the other thing too, giving the opportunity for other members to help. So imagine there’s like a post and somebody is struggling and maybe they’re getting some advice that maybe you’re not really getting a lot of advice. You can then create a new post and say, Hey, John, just posted yesterday about this situation.

And it’s really difficult. And I know that he’s not alone. Like more people have experienced this. I remember tagging other people. Right. But then also inviting other people to share, like, what would you do? So even if the person hasn’t experienced it, what would you do if you were doing. How would you handle this situation?

And so here’s the thing, even as I say this, it’s like, yeah, but Diana that’s like work. You’re asking people to like, share a lot and write a lot. And like you just go yes and no. Here’s the thing when you go with yes and no, nobody gives a crap, right? It’s like, yes, no move on. But when somebody shares something personal, something that’s hurt or something that’s like really inspired them.

Like that’s when people start to feel like, Ooh, maybe I can do that too. Maybe I can share maybe. Like feel open and safe enough to be in this space. And so I think like that’s kind of what I do. And then on the flip side, like entertainment And fun, like if you see inside jokes that happen, or somebody makes like you know, a funny joke or something comes up, like, play on that, pull that, stuff out. like when people call themselves different things. Right. So if you have a group photo managers and I dunno, like, I dunno, you call yourself as like the clickers. I dunno. There’s something like, you know, like a cool name, like lead into it and use that because it’s like, it’s like an identity.

They can be like, oh yeah, like we’re the clickers is not a good example, but like,

[00:31:13] Rick:
Yeah. I was like, I was like, oh, let it go. That was off the top of your head. Okay. We’ll get it. So I’m like sitting here, I’m FA this fascinates me. Right? Like this conversation just, I’m so interested in it because. I consider myself.

I’ve never been good at it that as this sort of thing. Right. And I have people on the team obviously, to help with this, but one of the questions I was going to ask you, I think you’ve already answered is that how do we create that safety, that safe feeling, but you’re doing that through everything that you just described is kind of Like, a, a benefit, if you will, or a side effect, if you will, of the types of things that you were just talking about. and, you know, one thing that we do, again, this is not really intentional. I think it’s just the, the people that, that we attract into our Accelerator coaching program. So in our group, like people share really deep stuff Like, you know, we had, like a lot of births this summer, for example, like, and, you know, and there’s, people are sharing all that stuff and, There’s a lot of deep stuff going on that, I’m very grateful that people feel safe to be able to share that stuff where it’s not all just funnels or ads or systems or all that stuff go.

I can say it’s a

[00:32:37] Diana:
Lot of people I know, like this is so big because a lot of people like, no, this is off topic delete, or, you know, this isn’t appropriate. Or I, I think that like community is not created in a bubble. Like happens. Like, for example, like I had a no sale line. You bet your

I’m going to be going into my ma like into the community that I’m in. I’m a member that I paid and I’m going to be sharing that. Why? Because a it’s therapeutic and helpful for me, I can process it, but also it gives other people permission to not feel like crap when they have a no sale woman. And it’s like that. I think there’s something. About empowering people to help other people just by sharing.

Like, that’s the thing too is, a lot of people think, oh, well I don’t have a question or I don’t have an answer. It’s like, well, don’t ask a question and don’t give an answer, share something, you know, share something of your experience or what’s going on with your life. And I think that it’s, I think, you know, life stuff does happen.

People have kids, or, you know, really horrible things happen or great things happen. And I think that when you allow space for people to actually talk about that, it that’s where the magic is. That’s where, like you said, like people share deep things and like the more people share, the more other people share.

And it’s obviously the way that you share again, it’s all about boundaries and expectations. The way people share can be constructive and helpful. I think that, you know, obviously having some guidelines in terms of. You know, like if somebody is having a day, like having some, some guidelines on how they can share that in a way that’s going to help them and help other members.

But I don’t think that we should be shutting people down and saying, you could only talk about funnels in this space. Right. Who wants to just talk about funnels all the time? Like, you know, like,

[00:34:29] Rick:
Well, that’s the whole thing, right? Because I mean, that’s, Uber, Uber important to, to myself and my team and, and our business is that like, look, we’re building our business around our life.

Not the other way around. And stuff happens in life where, you know, maybe you gotta step away from the business for a month or whatever amount of time because something happened and that’s okay because things

Happen. And so if we don’t feel like we’ve created an environment for people to be able to share those types of things, You just mentioned something there as far as setting expectations, but like, what are some other ways that, we could do that to be able to create that safe environment, if you will, or show people within our membership or in our community that it’s okay to, to share those types of things.

[00:35:16] Diana:
Yeah. I think that, and this, for example, like if your membership is maybe newer or maybe it’s like cricket town and it’s quiet and it’s probably one of the most painful and frustrating situations where you just want people to post and you just desperately want to do things. And so the number one thing we tend to do is we start jumping in and we start doing all the things.

And obviously in some cases we do need to do that. We need to jump start the conversation, but in the way that I was talking about before not ask me all the questions you want, or you don’t let me help you like the coaching. Right. And we try to save people with coaching. And so what I would say is. You want to experiment with, with content. And so obviously if you have a, if you have a membership and there’s content, like people are posting, observe what they’re doing and do what I was talking about before kind of observe and pull it apart. But what happens if they’re not posting? Like you’re not getting that inspiration. This is the very uncomfortable reality is that you have to create content and experiment.

You have to have a hypothesis that this is going to land and you put it out there. And if nobody cares, you’re like, all right, cool. That didn’t work, move on to something like something else. And so, I mean, even as I think of that, I would take it, like, take it the same way as a content strategy for say your Instagram or for your blog or whatever it is, you might have, different buckets, right?

So you might have something that’s focusing on how to something that’s focusing on stories of clients, something that’s focusing on wins or different content buckets or types, and just start testing those. Seeing, like, for example, if you spotlight a member, see if that is interesting. If people have questions for other members, you know, or maybe it’s sharing something that you’ve experienced and then trying to connect.

To, to their experience. So for example, myself, when I, in my mastermind, it’s a new membership. So I work with established membership owners. So a lot of my experiences are it’s like, this is new, you know? And so you have to look for a way to kind of connect the dots and say, this is what I’m, this is what I’m experiencing.

Here’s a story. And then look for the connection to, to what they’re experiencing. and even something else that has been really helpful as well is just sharing stories of what’s going on in your life, but then connecting it to. The content or the situations that they’re working on is amazing.

So like, you’re like, I was just at the grocery store and there was this old guy and he was saying, you know, and then suddenly it goes into, this is just exactly what happens when you’re selling X, Y, Z. Like you take real stories because people actually are like fascinated, they’re listening. They’re like stories.

And so. I find that like, I just, when I’m out and about like something will happen or somebody says something or I see something and I suddenly get like, Ooh, this could be like a really good, a good, like, for example, I was making the homemade bagels the other day and I was shaking. I was, have you ever made homemade bagels?

It’s a very labor intensive, so, but they’re amazing. Definitely worth it. Okay. But I had just boiled them. I was doing the sprinkly, you know, everything bagel thing, and I’m just sprinkling. I’m shaking, like nobody’s business. And then boom, the lid of the jar falls off and all the bagels go all it’s just like this.

And I’m just like, you know what I did, I kept holding it. I grabbed my phone, I took a picture and I was like, I don’t know when I’m going to use this, but this is going to be a story is going to be odd. Like either Instagram or it’s going to be in my group, it’s going to be something. I, it was the funniest thing, because normally I would just be like, oh my God, like it’s everywhere.

But the first thing I thought was this is a story and I can use it in a different way. So I think use story, like the stuff that’s happening. Like I’m sure there’s like five stories from today in your life that you could connect to help your members.

[00:39:25] Rick:
Yeah. That’s something that I don’t do a very good job at for sure.

And I I’m starting. And as soon as you were saying, like, yeah, like I need to start thinking like that more. Like I was thinking just as you’re saying that I was like, okay, what happened in the past day or so? And I was like, oh, we had like an actual thunderstorm here in San Diego the other night. it was a pretty decent thunderstorm. I loved them, the storms growing up in the Northeast here in the states. And like, I was like, Maya, look, you know, she’s going to be three in December. She’d never experienced a thunderstorm. And so I brought her out in the balcony. we have a little bit little balcony on her house and she was enamored with it cause it started to rain really hard.

And she was watching the lightning and stuff. And then as the storm got closer, the lightening was coming further down towards the ground. I said, okay, it’s time to go in. And she had a complete and utter meltdown because you know, in her mind, there’s no difference between, you know, mommy and daddy are telling her to go inside versus we need to go inside because it’s unsafe out here and we’re, you’re holding onto this metal railing, you know?

And so, yeah,

[00:40:37] Diana:
But this is the thing. Do you know what’s happening for me and everybody else that is listening right now, everyone was like, Just listening what’s happening next. He just took his kid outside and then there’s lightning and all it’s, our brain just is captivated. And so then you just need to transition.

You just need to, okay, cool. And this is, this reminds me of when we talk to customers and they don’t understand X, Y, Z, or when you have a situation with someone and for example, like managing your community and you have a member who is like losing, losing their a little bit about something and you have to manage that. You can totally connect the stories because it’s all about emotion.

[00:41:17] Rick:

Alright. That was just part one, my friend. Coming up next week we’ve got part two in this mini series with Diana Tower. We’re going to continue the conversation about how to reduce churn, keep members engaged, and increase retention in your membership. Hopefully by now you’re like, holy cow, Diana is amazing.

And she is. Like I said before, after I had that initial conversation with her in this interview, I’ve got to get her to come to a private, exclusive training with our Accelerator coaching members. When I’m recording this, we’re doing exactly that, coming up in the coming week here for our two day virtual retreat. People are so excited about hearing from her because she’s so good.

So, enjoy. I think you’re going to hear a lot more from her here on the podcast. That’s just a little teaser for you, but yes, part two coming up next week.

Again, if you are an established online course creator, maybe you’ve got a membership or you’re an online coach, and by established I mean you’re already doing at least 100K a year in your online business, and you’re looking to scale. You’re looking to take things to the next level and increase profit, increase your impact with less. If you want to do those things, but you’re feeling stuck. You’re not quite sure what to do. Maybe overwhelmed, then our Accelerator coaching program is for you. To learn more and apply—it’s application only—go to RickMulready.com/Accelerator.

Alright, my friends. Thank you so much, as always, for tuning in today. Super appreciate you.

Again, part two with Diana coming up next week. Until then, be well, and I’ll talk to you soon.

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