The SuhHub blog – articles on all things membership and membership websites

BekahFit poses with medicine ball

SubHub Client Profile: BekahFit

The fitness industry is booming, with jobs in the sector predicted to rise by more than 23% over the next decade.

Easy access to 24-hour gyms and downloadable mobile apps have  contributed to this rise, along with the growing number of personal trainers. Step forward, Rebekah Morgan.

Competing as a gymnast and dancer, Rebekah learned to condition her body at a young age and she has since turned her love of fitness into a passionate career.

dance jump floor

She explains: ‘I started teaching aerobics classes 14 years ago while in college. Later, I started doing personal training and group training classes.

‘I have been in the fitness industry for many years now and it is constantly changing and evolving. It is important to stay up to date with research, education and technology in order to be successful.’

Evolving Economics

BekahFit poses with medicine ball‘When the economy started to change about five or six years ago, I started doing less one-on-one training sessions and more group training classes.

‘It was more affordable for people and it let me do what I love – group fitness. I ended up moving to a different state a couple of years ago and knew that I was going to have to start over with building a client base.

‘I had been pondering the idea of an online fitness site for about a year so I knew that the time was right. I did some research online and came across SubHub. They offered exactly what I needed and it’s extremely cost effective. SubHub walked me through the entire set up process for my site BekahFit.com.

‘There were some struggles in the beginning because I had to figure some things out with my computer, my video hosting site and other technological issues. I started filming workouts each week and would add them to my website under specific categories. Many of my past clients signed up immediately and loved the workouts.

‘I chose to keep the subscription price for low, at $9.99 per month. My site has grown organically and I am very involved with social media, so the only advertising I have done for is through Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.’

Loyal Following

Bekah has established herself as a fitness guru, and realises the importance of knowing her market. She says: ‘My passion is definitely women’s fitness. Women are the most faithful clients/customers when they trust someone and believe in what they are selling. Women are extremely loyal and over the years I have developed a large following of women who want to change their body and get in shape.

‘The workouts are geared specifically for women. I design the routines so they can be done at home for busy Mom’s with limited equipment and time. I use Facebook to create excitement about the new workouts each week and it lets me stay in contact with my members.

BekahFit

‘Women message me every single day letting me know their weight loss progress, or how much they love the workouts or how they can finally fit into their “skinny jeans.” It’s fun for me because I get to be as creative as I want with the routines, and I thrive off the feedback from my members. The next phase I would like to enter with BekahFit is a members forum and a store with fitness apparel.

‘I currently have 150 members right, but my goal is to double that number by next year.’

If you’re considering creating your very own SubHub site, why not check out BekahFit for some inspiration? You could even sign up for her Butts and Guts workout.

 

 

 

Hail The Ale: Jeff Evans from Inside Beer is a journalist, author and beer lover.

SubHub Client Profile: Inside Beer

JeffEvansDenverCrop

Raise a glass: SubHub customer Jeff Evans has produced a number of books about beer

Worldwide, there are over 20,000 brands of beer, brewed in 180 different styles from ales and lagers to stouts and bitters. With so much variety, even the most eager connoisseur would be hard pressed to try them all, but this man might come close.

Jeff Evans began writing about beer in the 1980s, putting years of practical experience to good use. Since then he’s travelled the world and sampled offerings from the best breweries, writing books, columns and providing tasting notes for retailers along the way.

In 2009, he set up InsideBeer.com to consolidate his online presence. Jeff explains: ‘I decided to set up the website five years ago to complement the books I write and to augment the features I supply for various publications around the world.’

Authoritative Resource

In 1990, he became Editor of CAMRA’s best-selling Good Beer Guide, and he’s also written The Book of Beer Knowledge and A Beer a Day for the same publishers. His acclaimed e-book, Beer Lover’s Britain, is currently available for Kindle.

Jeff continues: ‘I was finding that there was always more I could write about beer than was required by print media. I’d go on trips to the USA, Belgium, Czech Republic and other countries and only be able to use a small part of what I discovered. By setting up my own website, I could make full use of my beer travels.

‘Additionally, I could provide something that was lacking for web-users, namely a comprehensive, authoritative online resource about beer, a place where readers can go to find out the latest, breaking beer news, to learn about forthcoming events and festivals, to find reviews of new beers and new beer books, and to be pointed in the direction of the best beers and best pubs.’

Hail The Ale: Jeff Evans from Inside Beer is a journalist, author and beer lover.

Hail The Ale: From lager to stout, Jeff has established himself as an authoritative source of beer knowledge

Free and Open

Jeff also runs tutored tastings at food festivals and beer dinners, where people can get expert advice. He uses the site to advertise and promote these events, and he’s opted against the subscription model favoured by many SubHub users.

He says: ‘My initial thoughts were to run the site on a subscription basis, but I soon decided to make the site free and open. This allows me to target selected advertisers and build up a bigger awareness of the work I do.

‘Interaction with readers comes through Twitter and Facebook, rather than through the site itself, which is set up as ‘read-only’. I figured I could spend too much time reacting to comments if these were invited on every article and news piece I posted.

Tweet: Jeff has found that Twitter is the best networking tool for building his profile.

Tweet: Jeff has found that Twitter is the best networking tool for building his profile.

‘I was fortunate that, when I set up the site, I was already well known as a beer writer but the site has certainly consolidated my position at a time when the print media world has been in a state of change. It has also introduced me to new markets, particularly in Eastern Europe, where I’ve been commissioned to give numerous talks and seminars.’

Liberating

Because Jeff was already known, site numbers were decent at the start but, as the brand Inside Beer has become more widely recognised, visitor numbers have increased substantially. He comments: ‘Of course, you have to work at this. Twitter use, in particular, is essential to driving up the numbers.

‘The great thing for me as a journalist is that there are no longer any boundaries. On Inside Beer, I write what I want to write and not just what a magazine editor wants to commission. That, for a writer, is particularly liberating.’

If you’re looking for inspiration or tips for your own site, take a moment to browse Inside Beer and you could even sign up to Jeff’s free newsletter.

 

 

Video Production

How To Make Your Videos Look and Sound Professional

Earlier this month we took a look at how to shoot videos for the web. But editing your video is as important as the footage itself. Whilst nowhere near as lauded in Hollywood, the editor is an essential counterpoint to the director. Would Pulp Fiction be as loved without the superb editing work of Sally Menke? Probably not. Of course, we’re not expecting you to make a blockbuster, but the importance of great production shouldn’t be underestimated. With that in mind, we’ve put together a guide to making your videos stand out from the crowd and listed the post-production tools you’ll need to get the job done.

Video Production

1. Trim it.

No customer likes to have their time wasted, so make sure you remove any excess footage using a trimming tool. Any basic video editor will feature one of these. Kate’s Video Toolkit is one of the simplest free production tools on the web, while the Windows Movie Maker or iMovie programs preloaded onto your computer are equally useful. If you’ve missed filming something important but don’t have the time to reshoot, chances are UnlimitedStockMedia.com has something close to the image you’re missing. Sites like this are great for plugging gaps and adding professional shots to any video, but don’t use too many or your film may start looking like a scrapbook.

2. Filter it.

In our previous tutorial we gave you hints and tips on lighting your footage. If you’re still not happy with the result, free program Avidemux will let you tweak lighting levels, contrast and white balance in post-production. You can also crop your footage down to the professional standard 16:9 screen size and apply a number of nifty filters should you wish to make your footage black and white or colorized. Filters can be great for adding a special touch to your video but don’t overdo it – excessive use of filter effects can make films look clumsy and amateur, not the effect you want!

3. Add a soundtrack.

Listen closely to your raw footage. If there’s too much background noise, get rid of it with Avidemux. Adding a soundtrack should be your next step. Any basic post-production editor will allow you to sync a track or clip to your footage, but be careful: copyright laws mean that using a sound file from your music library could lead to trouble later on. Instead, head over to FreeMusicArchive.org for a library of cost-free tracks that you can upload to your video, or RoyaltyFreeClassicalMusic.co.uk for something more Mozart. For sound effects, FreeSFX.co.uk is your one-stop shop for bells, whistles and whooshes. Again, remember that less is more when it comes to soundtracking. Viewers need to be able to hear your message and not be distracted by excessive noise which may even make them switch off completely.

Kid shouting through megaphone

4. Add your stamp.

You’ve got your polished footage, now you need to ensure customers know why they’ve been watching. Avidemux and many of the other programs mentioned above allow you to add a business logo or ‘mask’ to footage. Alternatively, add a few static images with your name, logo and Sub Hub web address at the beginning or end of your video.

5. Convert it.

Make sure you’ve saved your video in a web-friendly format to avoid issues uploading the file to your webpage. Sub Hub makes this easy by allowing uploads in a number of formats. Once completed, you can add your final edit to a number of video-sites to get maximum exposure for your business. Youtube is the world’s largest video site, while Vimeo allows higher-quality streaming and a more polished user experience. Both services make it easy to share your videos on Twitter, Facebook and other social media channels; spreading the word and getting eyes on your business. Although it might seem counterintuitive (you want people to pay for these videos after all,) giving away some content can help attract people to your site and swell your membership base.

As with shooting, the key to producing professional-looking videos on a budget is simple: keep it basic. The best videos deliver their message in a clear and uncomplicated way, with no gimmickry needed. Try it for yourself; if a picture says a thousand words, imagine what a video could do for your business.

New Media, Social Media, Virales Marketing, rot

Research Methods, what are your customers interested in?

New Media, Social Media, Virales Marketing, rot

There’s a lot of competition out there; a whole Internet’s worth in fact.  So how can you be sure to stay ahead of the game and keep people logging onto your site rather than some rival’s? Well, it’s wise to take note of what your  customers want and what they expect. After all, in the words of Peter Purves, ‘Who Cares Wins’.

Analytics

An obvious place to start is by tracking your traffic. If you have a particular webpage that attracts a high number of hits, then this a pretty big clue as to what your audience wants. Conversely, if something doesn’t perform well, be sure to learn from mistakes and avoid re-posting similar content. You can track your customer’s path across your site, find out how long they’re spending on each page and much, much more. Analytics is a powerful tool, and working out what works is crucial to keeping customers happy.

Survey

There are several websites that allow you to create free surveys or questionnaires, which can then be emailed to your customers or even uploaded to your site. Asking your clients direct questions is undoubtedly a great way to find out what they want, and you’ll find a few quick and dirty tips on how to write good surveys here.

Focus Group

Inviting people to discuss their opinions or perceptions of what you do is a popular means of market research. These groups can often be more rewarding than straightforward surveys because conversation flows naturally and participants aren’t limited to a set list of questions. You may not have the budget to use external agencies but it could be worth meeting a few loyal customers, in person or via video chat, to gauge what they want from your business.

Peek

Ever wondered what other people make of your website? Well, now you can find out with Peek, an innovative service that offers you a view from a fresh angle. Simply type in your domain name and email address, and within a few days you’ll receive a real-time video of somebody road-testing your site. It’s a fantastic concept and it’s completely free of charge, unless you want to explore a more targeted campaign with specific demographics.

Comments

Allowing people to comment on whatever you post is a great way to encourage feedback.  You’ll notice there’s a ‘Leave a Reply’ section at the end of this blog, which is designed to invite you, the reader, to share your thoughts on what we do. Everything you say is taken on board and we try to answer any questions posed.

It would be great to hear your stories. How do you make sure your customer’s are getting value? How do you find out what they want? Let us know below.

 

Turning ideas into money

Content Ideas For Membership Websites: Give Your Members More

Turning ideas into moneyI was once a member of the He-Man fan club. I’ve kept that secret to myself for nearly 25 years and it feels good to finally admit it. My Masters of the Universe name? Kalvos (although I preferred the shortened form, Kal.)

On payment of a membership fee I was given a free badge, an ID card and a free packet of candy. As a kid that’s all that was needed. If I was paying an annual fee for a membership now however, I’d feel slightly short-changed by such a paltry return. Basically, members want more.

 

For an online membership site, you may think the options are limited when it comes to providing content so we’ve compiled a list of things you can do to provide your members with more bang for their buck and keep them engaged with your brand (hint: free candy should be an absolute last resort.)

1. Let’s Hangout

Be it live coverage from marketing events and talks or live guitar tutorials, customers will enjoy being able to interact with you. One great tool to consider is Hangouts on Air where you can invite up to ten people into a live chat/tutorial/presentation. This allows you to talk directly to your members while any number of other people can view the hangout live. The resultant recording gets automatically uploaded to YouTube meaning you can add that to your website as content too.

You could offer participation in the hangout as part of a competition or just select 10 members at random. Either way, it’s engaging and interesting. Make sure it’s well advertised on the front page of the website and social media to maximise the audience. The more people who see it the better.

2. Exclusive Podcasts

Offering downloadable podcasts allows members to make the most of your content whilst they’re on the go. Simple to set up, and easy to record you can even set up a private Soundcloud group which effectively creates a private database whilst also giving you the option of embedding any podcasts direct to your site. Plus it looks nice.

3. E-book

E-readers are big business so it’s safe to say that e-books would be greatly welcomed by your membership. As an expert, you have more than enough knowledge and content to condense into a kindle-friendly format. Choose a specific topic and offer it as a download direct from your site. Again, this allows members to engage with your business while they’re on the go, meaning they’re not solely staring at a computer screen when interacting with your work. And it’s not that tricky, you can create your very own using Word.

4. 1-2-1 Skype Sessions

The opportunity to pay for exclusive one to one sessions with experts or coaches would provide a great service for those who struggle with particular concepts or ways of learning. Being able to ask physical questions to someone who really knows their field would be a huge benefit, and paying for their ‘real’ time face-to-face is a sure-fire way to help people set out to do what they want to do, and progress to the next level. Much like Google Hangouts a 1-2-1 Skype session could also be offered as a competition or just as a benefit to a random member.

5. Annual Networking Events or Members Dinner

Being able to invite like-minded members to an event where they can share their ideas and meet each other is a great way to build the platform and make everyone feel personally involved. Industry experts will be able to share their ideas, and members will be able to meet them in person and ask any questions they have. This in turn will help members sign up for more and more once they’ve met and built a rapport with their teacher and know who’s giving them expert advice.

6. Newsletters

A regular weekly or monthly newsletter let members keep abreast of the latest activity on your blog but also allows you to explore wider news in your given field. It’s added value and also keeps your business fresh in people’s minds. Keep it brief and entertaining and you’ll see the benefit.

So there you have it, six effective ways to engage your audience; candy, ID cards and badges optional.

Media Converging

10 Top Tips For Producing Great Video Content On A Budget

Media Converging By 2017, it’s predicted 90% of all internet traffic will be video content.  They’re easily digestible and offer a chance to show the world how awesome you are. Plus, people are more likely to watch a video than read an article, and having video content boosts SEO rankings – driving traffic to your site.

So what are you waiting for? You don’t have to invest in anything fancy because there are many inexpensive alternatives to suit any budget. Here’s our guide to the best value video equipment:

1. Be Smart

According to Mobile Marketing 72% of people in the UK own a smartphone and 89% of 18-29 year olds in the US own one too according to another report. If you’re one of them, you already own the means to record, and these days most phones film in HD. Just be sure to shoot in 16:9 (landscape) rather than 4:3 (portrait), as this looks more professional.

2. Use Your Apps

A variety of free apps are available to improve videos on phones or tablets. Horizon addresses the above mentioned framing issue, while Lightt is a quick-and-easy editing tool that allows you to add unique filters and special effects.

3. Browse for Bargains

With smartphones increasing in popularity and digital cameras improving in quality, camcorders are quickly becoming obsolete. However, this means camcorder prices are falling and there are some real bargains to be had. The Toshiba CAMILEO-X400RD, for instance, has great features and is only £89.99 ($150) on Amazon.

4. Say Cheese!

If you’d prefer to buy an entry-level DSLR (Digital single-lens reflex… or ‘fancy camera’), the Nikon D5100 has great reviews and is available for a knockdown £279 ($460) at SLRHut. It offers full 1920 x 1080 filming and has built-in editing features.

5. Drift

If your videos are going to be more adventurous, the Drift HD Ghost range is a safe bet. Available from just £155 ($257), you get a lot of bang for your buck. It’s waterproof up to 9ft and has reinforced casing to protect the LCD screen. The inbuilt wifi enables you to operate remotely, and the lens rotates so you can adjust to capture any angle.

6. Tripod

Keeping the shot steady is a hallmark of professionalism, so avoid ‘shaky hand syndrome’ and get a tripod. Virtually all tripods use the universal screw that fits any camera, and a variety of grips are now available for smartphones. Failing all else, at least prop your device on a table or chair to ensure it stays still.

7. Take The Mic

Most smartphones come with a microphone for handsfree calls, but you can use this to improve sound quality when recording online videos. Here’s a great video to show you how.

8. Backdrop

When it comes to the background, avoid having any clutter or unnecessary distractions in shot. If you’re indoors, try recreating that studio feel by hanging a plain sheet behind you, or simply stand in front of a plain wall. With the right lighting, it can look great.

9. Brighter is Better

There’s little need to invest in professional lighting, just make use of any lamps you have and bear three basic rules in mind: The ‘key light’ is brightest and should be placed at a 45° angle to your camera, avoiding a ‘deer in the headlights’ look for your subject; the ‘fill light’ should be placed on the other side, filling in any shadows; The ‘backlight’ should then shine down on your subject, making them stand out from the background.

10. It’s All in the Edit

Chances are your computer is pre-loaded with basic editing software, perhaps Windows Movie Maker or iMovie. If you’re new to video production, these entry-level packages will have all the functionality you need – you can add titles, increase audio levels, layer music, and play with special effects. But it’s advisable to keep things simple. Unless you’re looking for specialist features like multi-cam editing, it’s unlikely you’ll have to upgrade to industry-standard software.

 

Property Checklists.co.uk

Client Profile: Property Checklists

Property Checklists.co.uk Whether through poor planning or unfortunate dealings with rogue traders, it’s estimated that people in the UK waste over £4 billion on failed property projects every year – a staggering sum that can lead many to financial ruin.

 

SubHub customer Kate Faulkner runs PropertyChecklists.co.uk, a site which aims to help would-be property developers and industry professionals alike.

 

 

 

Kate explains: “It’s a simple concept. Whether you’re planning to buy or sell a property, lay new flooring or find a plot of land to build your own grand design, we will have a checklist to help you through the key steps, link you to essential information and find the best companies to work with. If people get stuck, they just email us and we’ll help solve the problem.”

Expert Advice

Kate regularly appears on BBC Breakfast, ITV news, Radio 4 and 5Live, while also writing for Period Ideas, Moneywise and Which? Magazine. She has also been the Daily Telegraph’s buy-to-let expert, and the idea behind launching the site was to enable people to get individual advice from Kate and her team. This is all provided free of charge, with the aim simply being to help people carry out their property project successfully.

She continues: “The main issue, as for many websites, was getting the design right. It is important to keep it simple and easy to navigate without the site looking cheap, but SubHub helped us with this from the start. Next was how to maximise traffic to the site. We realised using social networks, collecting email addresses to send out newsletters, and constantly appearing in the media was a powerful combination to drive this traffic.

“If people sign up to our website they do so for help with their property project. We regularly ask them what information they need, encourage feedback and interaction and our twice weekly mailings focus on residential property. Members have signed up for property content and we always give them unique, independent, up-to-date information to help their project. We don’t send them anything else we are asked to promote, we don’t advertise things which aren’t relevant and we don’t sell their data.”

Watch this space

Kate gives over 50 presentations a year, so regularly interacts with industry people and members of the public. After each seminar she offers 10-20 ‘top tips’ or ‘steps,’ which are always well received, and it was this positive feedback that inspired the idea for the website. In order to reach more people it was decided to replicate these checklists online, supported by the top property companies in their area of expertise.

The plan for 2014, though, is the world of video and online seminars.  Kate Faulkner

Kate signs off with effusive praise of ourselves (we promise we haven’t paid for this,) saying: “Quite simply, we couldn’t exist without SubHub as the start-up costs and the need to run an in-house IT department would prohibit us from being able to build the business from scratch. The content management system is so simple to use. Whether it’s selling books through the ‘shop’ or using the forum, it can all be done by pressing a few buttons and is very intuitive.

“The support and help we have from the team is second to none – they’re always there for you. It’s a great way to get your business up-and-running quickly, and cost effectively.”

If you’re looking for inspiration or tips for you own site, take a moment to have a browse of Property Checklist  and they might even save you a small fortune on your property.

www.propertychecklists.co.uk/

 

Louise Hewlett

SubHub News from Louise

So we round up February, which to me is always the shortest and sweetest month.

With the new version of the platform due to be released in April, SubHub Towers is a hive of activity. This upgraded version of our membership platform will be fully mobile responsive, and allow media files to be viewed on all tablets and smart phones.

Kapow

These are exciting times for the team and, more importantly, our clients who have been patiently waiting for new improvements to our membership platform. We are well aware that the solution has suffered from some neglect, and is falling a little behind our ‘competitors’ products. This is why I am committed to pushing for new features to be developed, and will make it my mission to make SubHub the first choice for affordable online membership solutions. Kapow!

This month, we reviewed our messaging on SubHub.com, and have started to invite new clients to request a Free Trial with us, instead of signing up without us. This has not always worked in the past, as different users have different ways of discovering new technology. So this way we get to find out more about our prospective clients immediately, and so far the results have shown that this is a much better way to offer our solution.

Maybe you might like to take a leaf out of our book, and try and new approach to attracting new clients in March. Do let us know how it goes, we are always eager to hear about your ideas and plans, so get in touch if you wish to discuss options with me.

Good news to end on! We said Au Revoir to Chyrelle, who gave birth to a girl earlier in the month, we are delighted for her and her family. Looking forward to meeting your little bundle of joy. Hope you enjoy your maternity leave, SubHub HQ misses you very much!

 

Lab Bulletin

Client Profile: Lab Bulletin

Lab BulletinTraditional print media has been in decline for a number of years with more and more publications switching their focus online. Stats from the Pew Research Center suggest it’s a growing trend with 50% of Americans now seeing the internet as their main news source.

Potentially, this conversion opens the door to worldwide audiences, creating more effective communication at a fraction of the cost. In short, it’s a popular move that makes good business sense.

SubHub customer Russell Purvis runs Lab Bulletin, a web-based resource for scientists and laboratory professionals. He’s overseen the transition from print to digital and is certain that it’s the way forward. He states: “I’ve been in scientific publishing for over twenty years. It used to be product-orientated journals, but around five or six years ago I noticed a massive shift towards people investing more of their budget online where costs are lower and information can get published a lot quicker. These days, we don’t produce anything in print.”

Russell’s business model is built around providing free content to the end user, which may sound odd at first, but this is the key principle that appeals to advertisers. At a basic level, the bigger your audience, the more valuable your ad space.

He continues: “Life Sciences is a very niche industry. We have over 30,000 subscribers to the newsletters and around 20,000 monthly visitors to the site, which isn’t a huge amount of traffic but it’s good enough. We charge for banner advertising, which is then linked to Google doubleclick, allowing us to analyse the metrics – if advertisers are paying you, you need to show them how effective their investment is. We also generate reports for the number of clicks on sponsored content within each newsletter.”  Russell Purvis

In stark contrast to the diminishing power of print media, Lab Bulletin has gone from strength to strength. Russell informs: “Our revenue has been growing 35-40% per year. It was all a learning curve to begin with, but going online was a natural shift and we normally conduct an annual review of the site – adding new areas or tweaking functionality, developing it as we see fit.”

When asked what advice he’d offer to people interested in starting their own online publication, he replied: “There are two ways of generating revenue with this type of business – either sponsorship in terms of advertising, or through subscribers paying a fee. We’ve gone down the route of charging suppliers to promote their goods, rather than charging the reader, and I think this helps drive traffic to us.

“We don’t charge for putting content on the actual website, because we don’t want to limit ourselves to purely running information on those manufacturers happy to pay for it. We run free editorial all the time, providing up to date industry news and promoting exhibitions that will interest to our readers. This, in turn, helps us grow, because promoting such events also puts us in touch with the delegates who attend.”

Lab Bulletin is a prime example of a company successfully converting free content into cash. Growing an audience and becoming a trusted voice within their niche has attracted a considerable marketing income.

Howard Gossage, nicknamed the Socrates of San Francisco, was an influential advertiser during the ‘Mad Man’ era.

He once famously quipped: “Nobody reads ads. People read what interests them. Sometimes it’s an ad.”

Top 10

Membership Websites – Top 10 Subjects

Top 10 “What are the most popular subjects for subscription or membership websites?” is one of our most frequently asked questions, so below is a brief guide that’s been compiled to answer just that.

These examples should provide an idea of what works and why, but it’s by no means a definitive list of the things that work. When launching your own site, following a tried-and-tested path can yield great results, but you’re far more likely to succeed if you find a niche that really inspires you.

Miles Galliford, the co-founder of SubHub, suggests: “Pick a subject that you enjoy so much that you would be happy to write about it even if you weren’t getting paid to do so. You’ll spend most of your waking hours thinking about it and speaking with people who share your interest. If you’re not passionate about your subject, someone who is will probably create a better site than yours.”

With that in mind, let’s see what others have made work for them…

 

Subject #1 – Weight Loss, Fitness and Exercise

Example: [http://bekahfit.com]

Diets and fitness are evergreen subjects, attracting large audiences in search of their body beautiful. Here, Bekah provides personalized training tips and workout routines.

 

Subject #2 – Music Tutorial

Example: [http://guitarmann.com]

Music makes the world go round, and also makes for a popular topic. Stephen Mann has amassed a huge following for his tutorial site.

 

Subject #3 – Starting a Business

Example: [http://www.whatreallymakesmoney.co.uk]

‘How to start your own business’ must be one of the most popular search engine topics in recent times of austerity, so this niche has naturally flourished. Many sites offer great advice every step of the way.

 

Subject #4 – Make Money from an Existing Business

Example: [http://www.eonetwork.org]

Making existing businesses more profitable is always a popular choice. The Entrepreneurs’ Organization is a network of business owners from all over the world, enabling a peer-led community to learn from and influence each other.

 

Subject #5 – Online Marketing

Example: [http://www.copyblogger.com]

A plethora of sites offer advice on how to make the most of your online presence. Copyblogger teaches members how to create great content.

 

Subject #6 – Investment Advice

Example: [http://www.thisismoney.co.uk]

Newsletters with investment tips have been around for a long time, and now there’s a host of websites dedicated to regular updates. This Is Money offers discussion forums and expert advice.

 

Subject #7 – Improve Your Personal Life

Example: [www.mysinglefriend.com]

Dating websites are as popular as ever, but My Single Friend differentiates itself by encouraging well-meaning types to help their buddies find love. The big players may dominate the industry, but there’s plenty of opportunities for related subject areas.

 

Subject #8 – How to Guides

Example: [http://www.photographytips.com]

Sites geared towards educating and training make for fertile subscription ground. If you’ve got a hidden talent then creating a tutorial website can be very profitable.

 

Subject #9 – Relocation Advice

Example: [http://www.expatica.com]

These sites are catered towards people relocating to new places, providing all the info required to ensure a smooth move.

 

Subject #10 – Lifestyle and Religion

Example: [http://www.mumsnet.com]

Websites that create a real sense of community, centred around a kind of lifestyle or religious belief attract strong and loyal followings.

 

Conclusion

The membership or subscription model is a fantastic portal upon which many successful businesses are built, and knowing what works is great, but there’s still plenty of room out there for you to carve your own niche into the Internet.

If you choose a subject that resonates, your passion will shine through and customers are more likely to buy into it. There’s never been a better time to start your own site.