Selling subscriptions on a membership platform is a great model for lots of small business owners. It generates recurring revenue and can bolster your credibility in your field. A membership site also creates an opportunity to make money on your virtual events.
By offering virtual events for members and non-members, you can increase customer satisfaction and retention while attracting new subscribers. All you need are a few tools and to start creating virtual events on your own site.
In this post, we’ll walk through some of the ways you can boost your membership site with virtual events. You can use one of these approaches or all of them—it’s easy to mix and match depending on your goals.
We’ll also share tips on how to expand your community using free and ticketed events for members and non-members.
1. Create members-only events.
Members-only virtual events are a major perk for subscribers. They provide an incentive to pay for your content (and to keep subscribing!).
This model could work well for a professional organization that offers members-only webinars and panels. It also works just as well for solo entrepreneurs; some fitness instructors use Patreon, for example, where fans can subscribe to members-only classes and content.
By running your own membership site on WordPress, you use a calendar plugin like The Events Calendar to create a calendar that limits access to certain events to members. If you’re offering virtual events, our Virtual Events add-on comes with Zoom integration, embedded livestreams, and enhanced SEO so your virtual events display properly in Google searches.
2. Make a public calendar to attract new members (but keep events members-only).
If you want to let non-members get a peek of what they’re missing, create a public calendar on your website with The Events Calendar. Then, restrict event registration so that only members can register. This maintains exclusivity for members while also marketing your platform to non-members.
3. Create a special ticket tier for members.
You don’t have to restrict all your events to members, even if you run a membership site. For your next paid event, consider creating two ticket tiers: One higher tier for non-members and a discounted tier for current members. This can increase revenue from non-members while remaining fair to members who already subscribe.
With Event Tickets, you can sell tickets on your calendar and set up different ticket tiers for members and nonmembers. Event Tickets also makes the ecommerce side of ticketing seamless, with no third-party fees — which means you keep all of the revenue you earn.
4. Offer events that are free for members, paid for nonmembers.
Another option is to host events that are totally free for current members and charge a fee for non-members. This keeps members happy by offering an exclusive benefit, and it gives non-members a chance to see what you’re all about before committing to a subscription.
5. Open up event submission to members.
Get your subscribers involved by adding an event submission form to your site using our Community Events plugin with The Events Calendar. You can restrict submissions so that only members have the ability to submit events (or open it up to nonmembers if you like). By crowdsourcing, you’ll create a calendar that keeps the whole community engaged.
Pro tip: You can empower users to sell tickets to their events on your calendar by using Community Tickets in conjunction with Community Events. This lets you split ticket revenue with event organizers to earn additional revenue.
Get started with virtual events on your membership site
Ready to dive in? Check out our guide to membership integrations for The Events Calendar that provides an overview of compatibility with Restrict Content Pro, BuddyPress, WooCommerce Memberships and MemberPress.