If you want to earn money through your blog, there are many ways to monetize it. You can post ads on your blog, do sponsored posts, affiliate marketing, sell exclusive merchandise, and provide members’ only content. If you provide great content and have a solid following, creating exclusive content for a small fee is a great idea – especially if its quality work. To do this, you will have to find a great membership platform. In this article, we’ve listed down the best membership platforms to monetize your blog.
What is a Membership Platform?
So, what are membership platforms? For this article, we will specifically talk about platform services that run a subscription service for content creators. Of course, there are also membership site platforms known as Membership Management Software that allow you to manage membership functions from building a database to automated invoices and reminders.
On the other hand, the membership platforms we will list down are the services that ask a fee to your subscribers in exchange for exclusive content. Basically, they sponsor or become “patrons” of your craft or work. The fee can be done monthly or it can be a one-time thing. The subscribers have the freedom on how to support you and your blog.
Best Membership Platforms
Patreon is the first one to popularize this kind of service, which is why it is a very popular choice for content creators. Most people who choose to use Patreon are mostly YouTubers, musicians, artists, and podcasters. If you specialize in a niche, such as DIY crafts, remixes, or even video reactions on a specific subject; if you have a niche following, Patreon is a great platform. Moreover, this platform allows you to have constant interaction with your audience – even outside your medium like YouTube, Soundcloud, or Spotify.
However, Patreon is not recommended if you’re still starting and still building your following. Another thing to consider is that while Patreon is free at first, they’ll soon take a 5% fee once you start earning. Their three plans are Lite (5% fee), Pro (8% fee), and Premium (12% fee).
If you’re a life coach, consultant, or a mentor in a specific industry, Heights may be the perfect platform for you. Heights is a membership platform geared towards online learning. If you are offering online courses, and basically using your expertise to earn an income, this is the platform for it. What’s more is that it allows you to have unlimited courses, students, and content – and you can set your own fees as well (which you can keep 100%). Engagement with students are also encouraged in this platform.
To start using their service, subscriptions start from $39 to $399 per month.
Podia is like a one-for-all membership platform for your members. If you’re offering different kinds of content like online courses, eBooks (or any kind of digital downloadable content), and even webinars – Podia does exactly that. Moreover, you can offer membership levels to your subscribers with different perks, fees, and even content or product.
Podia is also quite affordable which is why it is perfect for start-ups or small businesses or solo entrepreneurs. Podia’s plans are at $39/month for their Mover plan, and $79/month for their Shaker plan.
Ko-fi acts as a tipping jar for creators. This platform is mostly used by artists, writers, and other creatives. What we like about Ko-fi is that it breaks down the “professional barrier” between creator and subscriber. Instead, it builds a friendly atmosphere which is why they describe their service as, “The friendly and free way for fans to support your work for the price of a coffee.”
If you earn money through commissions, or provide services for free but accept donations – Ko-fi is a great place to do it. No sign-up is required for your supporters, and paying you can be a one-time thing, or a monthly thing. Ko-fi can also offer memberships. However, you also have to keep in mind that since your supporters are paying the price of a coffee, minimum donation is $3.
Buy Me a Coffee is a service similar to Ko-fi. Monthly memberships are not required in this platform, instead you also earn through donations and commissions. Through this platform, you can also sell exclusive content and products to your supporters who choose to donate. Another great thing about Buy Me a Coffee is that the money directly goes to your account, and there are no monthly fees for you to use the service. However, the service charges a 5% transaction fee, as well as fees for PayPal and Stripe.
Kickstarter is another popular platform for your followers to support you. If you have a passion project in the works like a film, book, or a product that you want to create, Kickstarter is the platform to ask your supporters (as well as outsiders) to fund that project. The platform is great filmmakers, product designers/developers, gamers, painters, etc.
Unlike the ones we’ve mentioned above, Kickstarter is more geared towards one-time projects. People who choose to support your project can choose from different levels of funding. Depending on how much they pay, they receive something in return – from a simple thank you to a free gift.
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