The importance of rewarding your most active membersAug 30, 2023
When I was growing up, the town I lived in didn’t have any fast food establishments until I was in high school when a Burger King was built within walking distance of our school. I don’t know if you like the food at Burger King or not, but at that season of my life, I thought it was delicious and I ate there regularly. Eventually, I settled in on a favorite meal that I ordered almost every time I went. I got a bacon double cheeseburger with barbecue sauce, a side of onion rings, and a strawberry shake. That combination of flavors still reminds me of my teenage years.
A friend I grew up with recently gave me a gift card to Burger King in honor of how many times we went there in high school, so of course I ordered my standard meal just for the nostalgia.
A day or two after that, I happened to catch a video online about a Burger King employee who hasn’t missed a day of work in 27 years. That point was brought to the attention of the restaurant group that owns that particular Burger King location, so they thanked him with a gift bag filled with all kinds of nice things like gift cards, a travel mug, and movie tickets. The man said he felt honored and very grateful for their acknowledgment, but when his story aired on the evening news, many people felt like he should have received more.
In response, a donation campaign was established to bless this man with funds he could use to make his life easier, both now and in retirement. The last I heard, that fund had increased to over $400,000. When he was asked about it, he said he had already started sharing that money with his family and a portion of it went toward helping his daughter buy a house. In the end, I was left with the impression that this humble man was motivated more by serving and blessing others than by keeping his blessings to himself.
If you’re a business owner or online entrepreneur, there’s a lesson for us in that man’s example. If we’re motivated by serving and blessing others more so than by what we hope to acquire or consume, the fruits of that generosity will become highly visible over time in our businesses. Your generosity will also contribute to a feeling of trust and goodwill between you and the people you’re trying to serve.
I think it’s particularly wise to serve and reward the most active members of your audience or membership community. If people are willing to invest their time to work with you and learn from you, and they keep showing up, it’s wise to look for ways to express your thankfulness for them.
I won’t use his name since I didn’t ask permission to do so, but several months ago one of the members of the Platform Launchers Members’ Club sent me a message that chronicled some of the ways he saw me attempting to reward our members and sow the seeds of generosity within our community. His message encouraged me and I let him know that I was truly happy to do that. It feels right to celebrate the success of the people I get to work with together.
If you’re an online content creator or someone who leads a membership community, have you thought about rewarding your audience and most active members? Maybe that’s something you’re thinking about right now. Let me give you a few examples of ways that can be done. Basically, every time you’re generous with what you have by sharing it with others, you’re conveying that you value the person you shared it with.
1. Share your time
Time is one of the most valuable assets you have, and access to your time is something you’ll need to be more selective about when what you’re building begins to grow. Most people will recognize that fact and will put a premium on the time you’re willing to invest in them. Your most active members or the people who are the most faithful part of your audience if you’re blogging or podcasting, have demonstrated that they will value your time if you choose to share it with them.
2. Share the resources you’ve created
Over time, it’s likely you’re going to develop a library of digital and physical media content. You may eventually have a library of books, training videos, courses, and many other things at your disposal. Don’t hesitate to share them. Spend the money to mail a signed copy of one of your books. Share some of the digital resources you’ve created. Take something that’s normally behind a paywall and give it away for the benefit of someone else.
3. Share the platform you’ve built
If you regularly listen to the Platform Launchers podcast or read the Platform Launchers blog, you’ll notice some guest appearances from members of our community. My goal is to use what I’ve built to help build awareness for what they’re building, particularly for our members who make a point to join our live calls. I love sharing their guest blog posts or opening up the mic during the podcast to let them talk about their platforms.
4. Share the connections you’ve been making
Connecting like-minded people who share the same passions is a real privilege. I love the opportunity to connect others when possible. You have to be careful not to overdo this, but when it makes sense, it can be a real blessing. I recently connected someone with a unique and interesting story to a popular channel on YouTube that was willing to feature her business.
5. Share discounts that save them money.
This is very easy to do. Creating coupons, special offers, or product/coaching bundles that discount your prices can be a great way to reward people who value your content. I do that regularly and it’s honestly a win/win scenario. The people you’re serving will benefit, but so will you because of increased sales.
6. Share your wisdom by actually paying attention to what they’re doing and offering feedback.
We all appreciate being noticed. Take time to pay attention to what your audience and members are building. Offer words of encouragement or counsel from time to time. Try your best to stay updated by subscribing to newsletters or social media updates from your most active members. They will notice and they will care.
In general, never fear generosity. Sharing with others should never make you feel like you’re being taken advantage of. A giving spirit is good for your heart, good for those who receive your gifts, and good for the reputation of the business or platform you’re in the process of building.
© John Stange, 2023
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