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Premium Members Forum Ideas Needed

Discussion in 'General Business' started by Jameyson MacDonald, Aug 24, 2014.

  1. #1
    I'm setting up a spiritual forum and want to offer the option for premium membership and I've created a special area where only premium members will have access, but I don't have a clue what sort of things to put in this section that would make anyone want to actually spend money on premium membership. Does anyone have ideas?
     
    Jameyson MacDonald, Aug 24, 2014 IP
  2. Pepy

    Pepy Active Member

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    #2
    Forums are not easy to monetize and by picking up that niche you have already limited the possibilities.

    In order to make people want premium access you have to create this feeling of added value they are getting in order to make them do a premium subscription. However, to do that first you need to make people getting out something of basic forum. I have seen even big forums struggle to do this.
    The very base should be to make the place look and feel as a community. Then you can move on.
     
    Pepy, Aug 24, 2014 IP
  3. Jameyson MacDonald

    Jameyson MacDonald Well-Known Member

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    #3
    Could you look at it and give me your thoughts? http://lcws.net/forum/

    I know the scope is probably limited, but the forum is really an extension of my main site, which is a niche blog about spiritual matters. The spiritual niche has served me well there.
     
    Jameyson MacDonald, Aug 24, 2014 IP
  4. DomainMagnate

    DomainMagnate Prominent Member Premium Member

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    #4
    I'm afraid your forum is too new and small at this point. You should first focus on making it more active, get more members and only after it's gotten a decent community and active members you can start looking into making premium memberships. Otherwise no one will join if they see the forum is not active.
     
    DomainMagnate, Aug 24, 2014 IP
  5. Jameyson MacDonald

    Jameyson MacDonald Well-Known Member

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    #5
    I'm working on that, but once I have a decent number of members and posts, I'd like to have an idea where to go with premium membership
     
    Jameyson MacDonald, Aug 24, 2014 IP
  6. Variable

    Variable Greenhorn

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    #6
    Premium membership is the best way to monetize your forum. But the niche you've selected, I believe should just rely on payments considered as donations since it seems mostly spiritual projects are considered best to be non-profit.
     
    Variable, Aug 24, 2014 IP
    chinesegirl07 and fadhi123 like this.
  7. sarahk

    sarahk iTamer Staff

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    #7
    The standard things are adding a signature, allowed images in your signature.
    The premium posting area might be unspidered and for some that might be good when they are discussing intensely private thoughts.
    Or selling - that might be where you go if you want to organise a reading etc.
     
    sarahk, Aug 24, 2014 IP
    Jameyson MacDonald likes this.
  8. Jameyson MacDonald

    Jameyson MacDonald Well-Known Member

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    #8
    This is great information! Thanks
     
    Jameyson MacDonald, Aug 24, 2014 IP
  9. NetStar

    NetStar Well-Known Member

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    #9
    Don't get a head of yourself. Build your site.. build your forum. Once you have engagement and activity then worry about premium memberships. I swear some times people focus too much on upgrades rather than just going live!!!

    My BIGGEST flaw has always been trying to build a web site with too many options instead of just getting it up and running!
     
    NetStar, Aug 24, 2014 IP
  10. jowel

    jowel Active Member Premium Member

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    #10
    Spirituality and esotericism is a good niche, I had a project and was very in profit, I still have a domain traffic ...... good luck
     
    jowel, Aug 25, 2014 IP
    Jameyson MacDonald likes this.
  11. Alex - Arvixe

    Alex - Arvixe Active Member Premium Member

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    #11
    I agree with others, you really need to be building your site first before considering premium memberships.

    But for when the time comes, do you sell anything on your site? If yes, you could offer discounts. Really, even if you had a thriving community a premium only board is only worth it if you have multiple premium users. If not, it'll be a dead section and not really worth it.
     
    Alex - Arvixe, Aug 25, 2014 IP
  12. Jameyson MacDonald

    Jameyson MacDonald Well-Known Member

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    #12
    Actually, building my site isn't an issue. I already get close to 3k unique daily visitors on my blog and the new forums are attached to it. I just need more participation in the forums, though it's looking like that's beginning to happen. In the past 2 days, I've had 8 new members join and 31 posts. I'm about to have a press release published on 40 PR sites and run both Adwords and FB campaigns, so I don't think getting members and interaction will take long.

    In any event, I appreciate the advice. There's been a lot of great tips here!
     
    Jameyson MacDonald, Aug 25, 2014 IP
  13. Alex - Arvixe

    Alex - Arvixe Active Member Premium Member

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    #13
    Sounds like you have it well planned :). Once you start to generate an active following you should find it much easier to generate premium sales. You could look into adding benefits out of the premium specific board such as ad-free forums, lower flood limit etc

    Good luck.
     
    Alex - Arvixe, Aug 25, 2014 IP
  14. NetStar

    NetStar Well-Known Member

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    #14
    People generally purchase premium memberships on forums to support the community. Some forums will give you access to a members only area and perhaps the ability to list items for sale. They get fancy badging which separates them from "regular" members. I have purchased premium memberships on forums for various reasons.. Supporting the community has always been a big part of it.

    Honestly if you have 3,000 unigue daily visitors and ONLY 31 new posts and 8 new members in 2 days I would focus on trying to capture and convert more new registrations. I still don't see the purpose of offering a Premium Membership if you have no idea what to offer them in exchange for money.

    Unless your site needs money in order to survive I wouldn't rush it. It looks like you are on the right track to eventually be able to do what you are looking to do.
     
    NetStar, Aug 25, 2014 IP
  15. qwikad.com

    qwikad.com Notable Member Affiliate Manager

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    #15
    There's this one Christian site, they actually charge you if you want a group of people (the mods / trusted members) to pray for you. You sign in and if you want to post a prayer you pay something like $3 or $5. I think it's a clever business move, but I am thinking in the eyes of Jesus the site owners are into some spiritual fraud. Just my opinion. The entire US is full of Christian churches where the pastors and leaders are nothing but con artists. So a site like that is only bound to exist.

    I guess whatever you do (and I don't know what spiritual movement you're in) try not to defraud your members (usurping their weaknesses) charging them for things like prayer or personal revelation and so on.
     
    qwikad.com, Aug 25, 2014 IP
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  16. Jameyson MacDonald

    Jameyson MacDonald Well-Known Member

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    #16
    lol this is funny. I think you're right about that pay for prayer thing!

    I've been brainstorming ideas and I think I'm going to actually just use the site to sell spiritual-related things, like T-shirts, religious pendants, etc. That may work better than premium membership anyway. I know the owner of http://tinybuddha.com/, a pretty popular self-help site with a Buddhist slant and she sells things on her site from time to time, usually hand crafted Buddhist stuff and self-help courses.
     
    Jameyson MacDonald, Aug 25, 2014 IP
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  17. chinesegirl07

    chinesegirl07 Member

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    #17
    LOL! Premium Membership for Premium Prayer? :D

    Anyway,regarding your query.. like everyone's said that premium membership is not yet a good idea yet since your forum is fairly new.
    However, I could think of one possible idea for people to get premium membership if you would still pursue this.

    How about, premium membership to access / download lectures, seminars of various topics such as: Marriage Counselling, Spiritual Growth, Bible Study or Sunday School Lectures, Family Matters, Financial Matters, and etc....
    though those topics could be searched on google or asked on forums but this one is an advice coming from the experts.
     
    chinesegirl07, Aug 27, 2014 IP