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Episode 35: Membership Series Bonus: All-In-One Approach to Membership Sites and Online Courses

A special bonus episode in our membership site series featuring Nathalie Lussier, creator of a WordPress plugin that integrates directly with ActiveCampaign to help you sell courses and manage a community of learners.

Listen to Episode (40:49)

Synopsis

As an entrepreneur who built her first website at 12 years old and went on to launch several businesses throughout her career, AccessAlly CEO Nathalie Lussier knows a thing or two about software, running a business, and selling online courses. Learn about the tool she built that integrates directly with ActiveCampaign to help you sell courses, track progress and create a customized learning experience for your site users.

To learn more, visit AccessAlly.com and 30DayListBuildingChallenge.com.

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Transcript

Chris Davis: Welcome to another episode of The ActiveCampaign Podcast. In this podcast … I thought [00:00:30] I was finished, everybody. You know we just finished our three-part membership series where I talked about dynamic memberships where you can add access and revoke access by a tag instead of being restricted to just membership levels as we have known it in the past as marketers and online business owners. Right when I was ready to put a bow on it, I came across another platform that I just felt I would be remiss to not mention this and expose [00:01:00] you all to this platform, primarily because they reached out to me individually and I got to talk to the CEO and get the vision behind it, understand the pathway.

I was no rookie. I’m not going to lie. I was watching from afar for many years, so I have much respect for the CEO. After getting my hands on the plugin, I said, “You know what? This is very much something that the users, the community of [00:01:30] ActiveCampaign marketing automation needs to know about.” That person is Nathalie Lussier of AccessAlly. Nathalie, how are you doing?

Nathalie Lussier: I’m great, Chris. Thanks so much for having me on. This is going to be a great conversation.

Chris Davis: Yes, I agree. You guys gave me a demo, and ever since you showed it, it did, it challenged my thought process and approach to membership sites and course content, because I’m used [00:02:00] to platforms handling it a certain way. We’ll talk about that later in the episode. When I found out how you all were doing it, as I said, it was a bit different, but then I said, “You know what? That’s probably how people feel with Active Campaign.” They’re used to marketing automation looking some way or having to pay this much or being this complicated, and then when you see a new way, it’s like, “Oh, wait a minute. I don’t know if I trust this yet.” But the more you use it, [00:02:30] the more comfortable you get with it.

I’m glad to have you on. Tell us a little bit about your background.

Nathalie Lussier: I fell in love with computers at a very early age. I built my first website when I was just 12 years old. I ended up studying software engineering in school. As an intern I worked in Silicon Valley and on Wall Street. Then, when I graduated from university I had this job offer to follow the path on Wall Street, and I turned it down to start my first online business. [00:03:00] It’s not the business that you see today. It would’ve made sense to start a software company right out of college, but I ended up starting an infoproduct business, teaching one of my passions, which is healthy eating.

I learned so much from doing it that way and learning about selling online courses and doing launches and marketing online. I used all of that learning to essentially build the tools that we use today to sell some other [00:03:30] courses and programs that we’ve built along the way. That’s how I got back into software, was through my own business.

Chris Davis: Nice. At times, people think that I grew up with a computer in my hand, but it was so much further from the truth. I had no clue how to use computers until college. I was actually a late bloomer. Okay, I get it. When you made the shift from your … You said healthy eating infoproduct, [00:04:00] right?

Nathalie Lussier: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Chris Davis: When you look at people’s path, Nathalie, we’re very set in our ways in a way. We all have a blueprint. Sometimes you get a new idea, and it may seem new, but you realize later on, in that idea, “You know what? I’ve always been this way. I’m just using a different means to do it.”

Nathalie Lussier: Exactly.

Chris Davis: We always leverage what we’ve done

Nathalie Lussier: Absolutely.

Chris Davis: In [00:04:30] that respect, you’ve got this information business about healthy eating. What was it about that that helped you get into the next move? Is that where you started to make marketing plugins?

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah, exactly. After I did that, there was a couple other steps in between. I ended up being a web designer for a little while, and then I also taught technology or online technology that goes with marketing. I circled back to some of my roots [00:05:00] as well with the tech stuff. That just came because people saw my website and they were like, “Who built your website and what tools are you using and can you teach us how to use them?”

Then, eventually I realized that a lot of the technical tools that I was teaching people, they still required a lot of coding or they were still too technically advanced for people, so I realized, well, what if we build our own that are just easier to use, that look great out of the box, that are design flexible but [00:05:30] that don’t require you to be an advanced programmer? That’s when we decided, “Okay, let’s do this. Let’s start building these tools.”

We did start with AccessAlly, which is the membership platform that we’re talking about today, but that’s not actually the first platform that we released. We released our PopupAlly tool first because we wanted to test if we were able to actually sell software, because that’s something I had never done before, and if we could support it well too. We wanted to make sure that we had systems in place and a [00:06:00] team and all that stuff before we really released a bigger platform like AccessAlly.

Chris Davis: Got you. Wow. I like it. When I’m thinking about it, that was a big shift for you, right?

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah, definitely.

Chris Davis: To go from what you know to selling software that, yeah, you mastered using it, you were using it and leveraging it, but, like you said, selling it is something totally different. [00:06:30] You started selling it. You’ve got AccessAlly in the back pocket. In the front end, everybody is seeing that you have PopupAlly and they’re starting to adopt it. I’m sure you started to see trends. What was that point where you said, “You know what? We have a suite of software solutions we need to add”?

Nathalie Lussier: Like you said, we were using AccessAlly ourselves, [00:07:00] and eventually what ended up happening is that people were logging into our membership site, downloading PopupAlly or some of our other courses, and they were emailing frantically, like, “What tool are you using to run your membership site? We want to do the things that you’re doing too.” Some of those things were the dashboards that we have, that member dashboard where you can see what courses you have access to and what you don’t, and then being able to send people to a sales page if they don’t have access to something really [00:07:30] easily. There were little things like that that people were noticing.

Once people were knocking down our doors, we were like, “Okay, yes, there’s a market for this.” Yes, there are already tools out there, but we’re doing things our way and we think it’s a little bit more of an intuitive and more marketing-friendly way, so we were like, “Okay, let’s just do it.” We also obviously built in a lot of gamification and progress-tracking and online learning, since that’s really where my background was around the online education space.

Chris Davis: I [00:08:00] love it. You know, a lot of people talk about becoming your first customer. But you know what, Nathalie? What I learned is there’s actually a step before that, and the step before that is serving. This is why I always start with who you are, who the person is behind the brand, so that people can make an educated decision on trusting, entrusting you, your platform, your product with their marketing. [00:08:30] When you look at somebody who has served an industry, if you were in this for the money, you wouldn’t have this track record of serving because you wouldn’t have known the needs and the issues of your audience, and then you wouldn’t have had real issues that you needed to solve to serve that audience better.

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah, absolutely. I think you’re totally spot on there. I love listening to the feedback of our customers, both from the training side of the business [00:09:00] and also the software, because it guides the direction that we end up building in. Yeah, you’re totally right. That’s where a lot of the input came in, and it showed us if we were on the right track or not.

Chris Davis: Listen, I am a big fan. I told you this the first time we met. I’m a fan from afar. Like I said, I’ve been watching you along this journey the whole way, because I got into internet marketing much later than you, so by the time I got into the space, [00:09:30] you were already moving. I was like, “Oh, look at all of these young entrepreneurs using technology and all of this.” I loved seeing the shift to this SaaS model that you have, because right when you did that, I knew you were thinking about sustainability and you were thinking long term.

Nathalie Lussier: Yes, totally. Those are words that we use a lot in our business. I like to think, 25 years down the line, what is my business going to look like? I really think [00:10:00] that online learning and education and all these things are the future, and obviously automation with that too. Yeah, it’s really fun to be in this space and to be able to use my background in software, and in marketing in more recent years too.

Chris Davis: Yes. Now’s the time where we get to talk about the juicy stuff. Your membership site. Before I get into that, the entire reason why I wanted [00:10:30] to have you on was because the second you gave me access, I jumped into it, installed the plugin, and I started playing around. A few things really stood out to me. For one is the deep integration with ActiveCampaign. Everybody listening, the previous three episodes that we talked about adding tags, taking tags away and letting people see things, redirecting them to pages if they don’t have a specific tag, you do all of that.

[00:11:00] But the thing that I enjoyed the most, I think this is really the differentiator, Nathalie. The difference was not only: Is it a marketer making the software? That’s one of the biggest differentiators that stood out to me. I was like, “Well, wait a minute. This is a marketer making software.” Your husband is a developer, right?

Nathalie Lussier: That’s right, and we have another developer, full-time developer on the team as well.

Chris Davis: That combination is really dangerous with making good software. [crosstalk 00:11:29]

Nathalie Lussier: It is, because, [00:11:30] yeah, I can say, “I want this done,” and it gets done, so it works out pretty well.

Chris Davis: Yes. When I was building it out, you have really built this platform with the user in mind.

Nathalie Lussier: Yes.

Chris Davis: The entire experience spoke to me. As I was walking through it with you and then myself, I really started to see the power in it, because a lot of the tools, and this is really your position I believe, because when I went to the website it spoke [00:12:00] to me in a similar way. You saw normally you’re going to have a membership plugin that can integrate with an LMS or a shopping cart or integrate with all of these other things, or you’re going to have an LMS that can integrate or offer some lightweight membership. A lot of the times, that satisfies the immediate need for the business owner, but as things change because of growth, now they need more. Whenever you need more, now you’re looking for another [00:12:30] tool.

Where you all took a different approach, you were like, “Look, what if we marry the two? The first layer is membership. We have that. But I see the future of online learning, and it’s courses. It’s engagement.” Gamification can increase that. Everybody else, you have to have this suite of solutions to do that. It’s like, “Well, what if we offered it all in one?”

Nathalie Lussier: Exactly.

Chris Davis: Was [00:13:00] that the exact thing that was going through you all’s mind?

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah, absolutely. When we were building it, like we shared, we were building it for ourselves first, so we were like, “Oh, I really wish we could track people’s progress through our courses. I really wish we could send them an email if they haven’t logged in for a while or haven’t completed a module and it’s been a couple weeks.” We realized, yes, we want to be able to have this customized experience for our clients and customers, and [00:13:30] why should we have to use a bunch of different tools to make that happen? It’s much easier if it’s all integrated and if it all speaks directly to ActiveCampaign.

One of the things that you mentioned is it’s all tag based, it has deep integration, but it’s also granular. You can apply tags if somebody shared on Facebook or if somebody completes a module, or if they take a quiz and the quiz results say that they need a little extra help, or maybe they are in a certain category [00:14:00] based on how they answer. It’s really, really easy to customize what your course participants or members are seeing inside of the membership site.

Chris Davis: Yeah, that’s important. I always like to look at little details. I’m always getting excited about little details. One of them was how easy it was to create a members directory. Nathalie, I’ve not seen that be a focus on many membership sites or platforms [00:14:30] that offer membership ability. When I saw that, I was like, “That just makes so much sense.” What was your thinking behind that and how well has that been received?

Nathalie Lussier: People love it, for sure, and it makes sense. If you’re having an online course, or people have used it for associations as well, association type memberships where you want people to be able to find each other in the course, and so what we’ve done is it’s a directory where people can update their own profiles, like upload [00:15:00] their picture, maybe put their website, a bio, their name. You can decide what you want them to include there. Then they can search for each other. You can also filter them out by different tags, so if you want to have two different directories or 10 different directories based on location or based on whatever you want them to be, but those are all based on tags inside of ActiveCampaign. It makes it really, really easy to build what you envision without having to do a bunch of custom [00:15:30] coding to get all of these directory features up and running.

Yeah, people love it. People use it for accountability, to meet other people in the course. It’s really flexible and really awesome.

Chris Davis: That is amazing. I have a buddy who’s into investing, and he’s creating an investors network. He’s using a particular software that is not friendly to what he’s trying to do. As you’re explaining this, it would be [00:16:00] a godsend for him to just be able to tag these people who have signed up for his profile, say, “Hey, you’re a real estate investor. Hey, you’re a stock investor. Hey, you’re a this investor,” and then go into the platform and it’s already categorized and sorted for you.

Nathalie Lussier: Absolutely. Also, because of the way AccessAlly is built, you could have members click on which ones they fall into, and they could apply their own tags through AccessAlly.

Chris Davis: Oh, like a self sort. Wow. Nice.

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah, exactly. It wouldn’t have [00:16:30] to be something manual that you have to each person, so they could sign up for, “Okay, I’m in real estate,” or, “I’m in … ” whatever you want. Yeah, it’s pretty cool that way too. It’s essentially like one-click tag adding inside of AccessAlly.

Chris Davis: I have to stress how important that is, because as a … I call myself a pseudo-developer. I know enough just to get dangerous, but not enough to get paid for it.

Nathalie Lussier: I like that.

Chris Davis: I know how hard it [00:17:00] can be to set up a directory website. It requires custom post types. It requires a front end search form that’s integrated with the database. Then you have to display the results. To see you offer that … That in itself could be its own thing, because now, if there’s somebody that’s looking to create a paid directory, a means of, “Hey, look, in this membership site I’m going [00:17:30] to connect you with x professionals in the industry,” and then somebody can go in there and just see, maybe it’s a copywriter or a web developer, and just be that directory. You’re helping take membership to another level beyond just, “Hey, here’s some protected content that you can read when you have this access.”

Nathalie Lussier: Absolutely. Yeah, it’s super powerful.

Chris Davis: That’s what I really like about when you develop the right feature. That’s one of the things we [00:18:00] try to do with all of our features, is make it to where it’s not so specific that you can’t apply multiple use cases outside of that for the user, so that the user can dream and come back and say, “Hey, I’m using it for this.” You’re like, “Oh, I never thought of that.”

Nathalie Lussier: Oh, yeah. That’s happened to us a couple times too, where we’re like, “Oh, wow, that’s a great use case for it,” and we’re glad it’s flexible enough to handle it without extra coding or anything like that.

Chris Davis: Yes. I was made aware of you all [00:18:30] through [Rafaela 00:18:31]. She reached out to me and told me, “Hey, we’ve got a deep integration from ActiveCampaign.” What was behind that decision? Was it something that you were hearing coming up more and more in the user groups, or was that more of a proactive thing, you all were looking at the landscape and just trying to see, “How do we build this thing better”? What went into that?

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah, we had a lot of people banging down our door, saying, like, “When’s AccessAlly going to work with ActiveCampaign?” We really do listen to [00:19:00] the people in our community, and we just had a lot of demand for ActiveCampaign. It was actually one of the first integrations that we prioritized. Yeah, like I said, we built it for ourselves, and then suddenly people were like, “Okay, ActiveCampaign is what we’re using,” so we made that happen very quickly.

Chris Davis: At this point, we’ve talked about AccessAlly, which is the overall umbrella of everything. It’s the membership site. That’s where you started, and it was more so internal use. [00:19:30] From user feedback and demand of wanting to use what you were using, it was made public or promoted as a product. In that, you have PopupAlly. Then, when you had the membership site up and you were listening to feedback, looking at the landscape, you then added ProgressAlly, right?

Nathalie Lussier: Exactly.

Chris Davis: Now, what is ProgressAlly?

Nathalie Lussier: ProgressAlly [00:20:00] is the gamification and learning management system plugin that works with AccessAlly and ActiveCampaign. This is where you would have certain things that you might expect in an LMS, like quizzes, maybe progress tracking and seeing how far people are going through the courses. There’s also auto-generated PDF certificates that people can earn at the end of a course. You can unlock pieces of content after completing a module, and there’s ways to apply [00:20:30] tags with that too, so you could basically, “Hey, somebody completed a module. We’ll unlock the next one.” If they don’t complete the quiz, then it’s still locked until they try it again.

Then, we’ve also added video bookmarks, so if you have a really long video, for example, people can come back in and either refresh themselves on a specific point of the video by just clicking on that video bookmark to start there. You can also track how much of a video somebody has [00:21:00] watched as well, which is going to be helpful to see, “Hey, people seem to get stuck on this part of the video. How could we improve the teaching or maybe make it shorter or give you more data there?”

Basically, ProgressAlly is all about helping people progress through your courses and also keeping track of that so you can actually help them get more out of the courses you’re creating.

Chris Davis: Everybody listening, that’s exactly what I meant earlier when I said there’s two layers to AccessAlly. [00:21:30] The first layer is membership. You can do many things just that. Just that far will get you … It gives you a lot.

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah. The cool thing with AccessAlly too that we haven’t mentioned yet is that it actually takes payments through Stripe and Paypal, so you don’t need to get a separate shopping cart or order form integration. It’s all built into AccessAlly directly. That’s, like you said, membership and access and payments.

You can also do cool stuff [00:22:00] with the abandoned cart followup sequence. If somebody is checking out and they’re ordering a product or a membership from you and they don’t complete their order, you can actually tag them in ActiveCampaign and follow up with them and bring them back to complete their order. You can even do a customized timed coupon to bring them back to the order form for like, say, 10% off just for 24 hours. It’s specific to each person based on when they abandon [00:22:30] their cart. You can do all kinds of cool automation to increase sales on that side of things too.

Chris Davis: Nice. Those are all really, really good features. Like I said, when you look at it from the membership, you’re offering everything that somebody needs for a basic and advanced membership site, right?

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah.

Chris Davis: Then, at any time that you want to add courses, you can just add the plugin right to it, the ProgressAlly.

Nathalie Lussier: Exactly. ProgressAlly [00:23:00] can sit on top of AccessAlly and just improve that customer experience even more, and also help you deliver your content and your courses in that more gamified way, if you will, that gets people to share it on social media, to take quizzes, to get certificates when they’re completing. It just adds that special touch that I think we need as more and more people are doing online learning to keep people motivated and continuing on in the things that they sign up for.

Chris Davis: [00:23:30] Yeah, I agree. I don’t think people take enough time to think about that engagement inside of the platform. I think a lot of people just assume since they bought and as long as I have it, they’ll consume it.

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah. That’s definitely the assumption, but I know for myself, I’m guilty of buying something and not completing or even logging in more than once. I’m sure it’s happened to probably listeners today too. In my opinion, if somebody cares enough about this topic [00:24:00] and learning from you to pay money for it, then it’s your imperative to help them get the most out of that investment and make sure that they log back in and continue to progress.

It doesn’t necessarily mean that they need to watch every single video or download every single PDF, but even if you know that they got what they were hoping to get out of the course, I think that makes a big difference. You can sleep better at night knowing that you did your job and that you provided something of value that [00:24:30] delivered on that promise that you made. To me, that’s pretty big.

Chris Davis: Yeah, I agree, because we’re in the business of selling value. It’s just packaged as a product.

Nathalie Lussier: Exactly.

Chris Davis: If you believe in the value, being able to notify someone or encourage them to consume the value, it helps everybody.

Nathalie Lussier: Absolutely.

Chris Davis: It’s not like you’re twisting their arms, like I have to my kids sometimes to eat vegetables. It’s like, “This is good for you. I know [00:25:00] it’s nasty.” But this is like, “No, go through it. I know you’re busy and there are so many other things that are competing for your attention, and if you just sit down and do this, you’ll get the exact value, and more, that you anticipated when you bought it.”

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah. Speaking of that too, the other thing that we have inside of AccessAlly to keep people on track and motivated is to use gamification and a point system. For example, people could earn points as they complete modules. They could earn points for sharing on social [00:25:30] media or completing quizzes. The cool thing is that you can use these points to maybe give them more content, or maybe it’s give them a one-on-one session with you or something physical in the mail to reward them. It doesn’t always have to be something that’s inside your membership site.

This kind of points system, it’s stored in a custom field inside of ActiveCampaign, and it’s like a credit … Or, not a credit card balance, but like a bank balance, where you can earn points and redeem [00:26:00] points for different things. You decide what you want that to look like. They could be stars. They could be chili peppers that you earn for doing cool stuff. It really gives that flexibility in your membership site to do more for your members.

Chris Davis: Got you. One thing that I realized we hadn’t touched on yet, and like I said I haven’t gone through the breadth of the entire application and plugins, but is there a functionality [00:26:30] for group chat or a forum?

Nathalie Lussier: No, there isn’t. That’s one of the things that we consciously looked at, and we decided to integrate with bbPress for that.

Chris Davis: Sure.

Nathalie Lussier: But then also a lot of our people tend to just use Facebook groups, because that’s where people already hang out online. That’s why we decided not to build that in. But with the directory, people can reach out to each other and book time to talk or do emails.

Chris Davis: Absolutely.

Nathalie Lussier: That’s one of the ways that [00:27:00] we’ve handled that.

Chris Davis: Yeah, and in terms of bbPress, what I’ve seen be most common is that you can give access to particular forums and threads based on tags. I assume that’s how yours works.

Nathalie Lussier: Exactly. Yeah, that’s how we handle that.

Chris Davis: Great. This has been great. We’ve got AccessAlly, PopupAlly, ProgressAlly. Is there any other Ally that I’ve missed?

Nathalie Lussier: No, those are the three that we’re focused on and that are [00:27:30] rocking and rolling out there.

Chris Davis: Great. Looking forward, what’s next for you all that you can share? What’s on your radar, as far as whether it’s things that you’re working on internally or maybe some potential features that people can look forward to seeing in the platform?

Nathalie Lussier: One of the things that we’re doing is we’re retooling our course creation wizard. That’s basically the wizard. It’ll create all the pages for you. It’ll create tags in ActiveCampaign and those course [00:28:00] icons. We’re retooling that to make it even easier to clone courses and just organize courses a little bit more easily, so if you have, let’s say, I don’t know, five courses per year, you don’t have to redo all that work every time you launch or every time you release a new course. That’s definitely one thing that’s coming within probably the next month or so.

Then, further on the horizon we’re going to be adding probably more payment integrations other than PayPal and Stripe, [00:28:30] and then some international features for different currencies and different stuff like that, and different languages as well.

Chris Davis: Great. It all sounds good. It all sounds good. It’s all necessary. Things like international support and all of that, it’s not the stuff that you wake up in the morning like, “I can’t wait for this,” but when you have a good product that’s being adopted at a high rate, those become things that are necessary to continue.

Nathalie Lussier: [00:29:00] Yeah, absolutely. There’s definitely other cool features, but I’m not sharing quite yet. Those are the things that people are asking for that I can publicly say.

Chris Davis: That’s great. I just wanted to make sure that everybody had a understanding of your plugin, how it works, the value behind it, because, like I said, some people may want to take the more … Because I look at it like this. The more you [00:29:30] can do with your hands as far as development or what not, the more customized you can get. It’s going to take time. If you want to spend that amount of time and if your business requires that level of customization, go for it. But for the most part, the majority of business owners, you need something that’s going to be easy to leverage and give you the most power.

Nathalie Lussier: Absolutely.

Chris Davis: That’s where I saw, if anything, we’re like cousin platforms, because that’s the approach that [00:30:00] we’ve taken at ActiveCampaign, is, like, “Look, we want it to be so easy that you can’t believe the power that’s beyond what you just did easily.”

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah, absolutely. The analogy I like to use is you’ve got Goldilocks and the three little bears. Some platforms are too big for your business to handle because they take so much coding and hiring of people to help you do things. Then, some platforms are so simple that they’re too small and you’re going [00:30:30] to outgrow them. Then there’s AccessAlly and ActiveCampaign, which is right in that nice in between. It’s really powerful, but you don’t have to be a programmer or spend a ton of time to get things up and running.

Chris Davis: Yeah, definitely. For your users, for the trends that you’re seeing, when it comes to course creation, are you finding that people, they already have courses and are coming in, or [00:31:00] are they getting started with membership and saying, “Oh, and I can do courses”?

Nathalie Lussier: That’s a great question. I would say there’s definitely a good percentage of people who are coming in who already have courses maybe on a different platform, or maybe it’s purely an email based course but they want to add videos now. A lot of times what we have for these people is we have a migration wizard. It’s just a nice little plugin that you run once and it imports all of your active campaign subscribers and it applies all the right tags [00:31:30] for the course. If you already have the course on WordPress, it also converts some of those pages into your new AccessAlly tag pages. That definitely happens.

Then we do have people who are like, “You know what? I think it’s time. Let me start my first course or my first membership, and I’m going to release a course every quarter, or every month I’ll have a mini-course,” and so then they start with AccessAlly.

Chris Davis: Nice. I really like the idea … Or, this is not an idea, [00:32:00] I like the existence of your migration plugin. It’s one of the things that, it keeps people … If someone’s listening to this and they’re like, “Oh my goodness, I want to use this,” but they already have a membership site, they already have a platform, and they’re overwhelmed with the idea of moving over. I know you have the migration wizard. Do you offer a service too? I can’t remember.

Nathalie Lussier: Yeah. What we have is we have [00:32:30] certified partners. They’re AccessAlly certified, and actually some of them are ActiveCampaign certified as well, so there’s some overlap.

Chris Davis: Great.

Nathalie Lussier: They’re super savvy with obviously all the automation side of things, but also all the WordPress setup, and some of them are also designers. Depending on what you need help with, if you just need setup or if you need, “Hey, I need help with the marketing automation to sell my course,” they can also do that. But then they can also help you design the site if that’s something that you are looking for. There’s [00:33:00] a wide range of services that they offer. Yeah, they’re super, super smart, amazing, amazing, talented people.

Chris Davis: Great. Nathalie, as we end this out, what is one thing that you would like to leave with our listeners that are thinking about getting started with a membership and/or course site?

Nathalie Lussier: I think one of the most important things that I like to share is that you need to have enough people who are interested [00:33:30] and aware of your membership site in order to sell it and make it profitable. One of the things that we do with AccessAlly is what we call the Login Optin Strategy. What we recommend is if you’re trying to build your email list on ActiveCampaign, what you could do is offer a free course inside of your membership site alongside your paid courses, and so when people log in they’ll get their username and password through ActiveCampaign. They can login and access their free content, which will help you build your list, [00:34:00] but then they’ll also see what they don’t have access to, and they might be interested in purchasing your courses directly from the dashboard. We’ve seen that once we implemented this, and all of our customers are also reporting a similar trend.

Then, beyond that too, once you have this kind of setup, if people like your free course, they can share it on social media and tell other people about it, and that helps you build your list even more without having to maybe pay for more ads or do more of the marketing yourself. Login Optin Strategy, [00:34:30] there’s a lot of cool psychological stuff that goes into making that so effective. I would definitely recommend just thinking about that, no matter what platform you end up using. Obviously, AccessAlly makes it super easy to do. Yes, that would be my big marketing takeaway for you.

Chris Davis: Great. I appreciate. That’s a good one. That is a great one, because it’s all about engagement, giving them … If you can get them in the membership site, that’s one less noisy platform online where you can continue to build relationship [00:35:00] with them. Wow.

Nathalie Lussier: Absolutely.

Chris Davis: Thank you. I would like to add, before closing out, your documentation inside of the application, everybody, so you don’t go out to an external website or you don’t have to do YouTube. All of the documentation is within the plugin in WordPress, and as you’re trying to figure something out, it feels like each video is properly placed. Because I was trying to figure out how to create a navigation, and then before you know it [00:35:30] I saw a link that said, “Need to create a navigation for your members?” I clicked it, watched the video, and I was off and running. Never even had to leave my WordPress site.

Nathalie Lussier: Yes, exactly. We even have screenshots that walk you through setting up a campaign for ActiveCampaign that connects you to AccessAlly, so if it’s the first time that you’re setting up a course, we have screenshots with little “click next when you’re done,” so you don’t have to necessarily watch a video if you don’t want to, although we do have videos too, but that takes you by the hand and makes sure that everything [00:36:00] is set up properly from the get-go.

Chris Davis: Yes. Nathalie, thank you for your offering to the space. I know it’s a huge value add, and based on your current customers’ feedback and just your continued growth. We appreciate that you have chosen us …

Nathalie Lussier: Well, thank you.

Chris Davis: … chosen to deeply integrate with us, and I look forward to more things to come, not only from you as you progress and grow the business, but also us [00:36:30] in ways that we can continue to integrate more deeply as marketing needs change and evolve.

Nathalie Lussier: Yes, absolutely. I think we’re pretty much leading the charge here and building what people need. It’s exciting times. Thank you so much for having me on.

Chris Davis: No problem. It’s been a pleasure, Nathalie. Wow. Thank you. Listeners, if you want to get in contact with Nathalie, find more out about AccessAlly, where should they go?

Nathalie Lussier: They can go to [00:37:00] accessally.com. That’s A-C-C-E-S-S-A-L-L-Y-dot-com. Or, you can also just go to 30daylistbuildingchallenge.com if you need to start building your email list. It’s a totally free list-building challenge, and it actually will show you our membership site, so you can see behind the scenes of how we’ve done things and the Login Optin Strategy in action.

Chris Davis: Great. Thank you so much, Nathalie. Everybody, you have the links. [00:37:30] They’ll be in the show notes. Take action. Let us know how it’s going. Both companies have great support. If you get stuck anywhere, reach out to us, let us know. Thanks again, Nathalie. You have a good one.

Nathalie Lussier: Thanks. You too.

Chris Davis: There we have it. Ladies and gents, boys and girls, that is AccessAlly, the bonus episode for this membership series. I’ll tell you what. I’m not going to make [00:38:00] the same promise I made before in saying this is the end. I only anticipate learning, finding, and having more membership platforms on the podcast, because it has been so well-received up until this point, and I truly believe that memberships are the easiest, most effective way to add recurring revenue to your existing business model. They take a bit of planning, as we’ve learned, but the technology has definitely evolved [00:38:30] to where we as business owners have the ability to build and use them effectively. As of now, there’s four choices that I’ve given you all.

But more than the tools themselves is the approach and the ideology behind them, the method in which they’re used and executed to grow a company, to expand the user base, engage more deeply with the community, and really stand out in a very loud [00:39:00] and crowded online space.

If you haven’t subscribed to this podcast, please do so. We’re available in iTunes, Stitcher Radio, Google Play, and SoundCloud. Go into your mobile app or your desktop application, type in The ActiveCampaign Podcast, and subscribe today. While you’re there, please leave me a five-star rating. Please leave me a five-star rating and review. It helps us get the word out. Small businesses [00:39:30] need more educational training around marketing and technology. We’re passionate about doing both. Help us help them by spreading the word.

Last but not least, all of these podcast episodes and more can be found at activecampaign.com, specifically activecampaign.com/podcast. If you need one-on-one help and assistance, we are the only company that offers the [00:40:00] level of one-on-one personal touch and care to our customers. You can sign up for a one-on-one at activecampaign.com/training. At that same website URL you can also register for the next office hours, where yours truly hosts questions live and we work through automation examples, strategies, and what not. That’s at activecampaign.com/training. At the bottom, scroll down. You’ll see the office hours link.

This is [00:40:30] The ActiveCampaign Podcast, the small business podcast to help you scale and propel your business with automation. I’ll see you on the next episode.

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