Do you ever feel like your physical/mental/emotional tank is running on empty after constantly launching new products and trying to find ways to make ends meet? All of the above?? I know how you feel, and I have totally been there. Relying on monthly launches to pay the bills gives me a stress rash just thinking about it. But I have a solution that completely changes my life…RECURRING REVENUE!
I will show you five ways to create recurring revenue for your business so you can stop worrying about paying your bills, and start worrying about what you’re going to elevate your thriving business! Ready to create a constant stream of income and start stressing less? Let’s dive in!
Let me tell ya, there is nothing better than being able to project how much money you’ll be making in your business months out at a time! The sense of safety and security is much better than getting a large cash infusion from somebody paying in full for your services. When I first started my marketing agency, I learned about monthly retainers. This was a relatively new concept for me and I realized that instead of charging hourly, I could estimate the total hours that it was going to take me to get the job done and multiply that by my hourly rate to figure out how much per month the client would owe me. After only having one hourly client, I moved straight to retainers because they were easier for me to calculate and send out invoices monthly versus having to keep track of all of the hours that I was working and sending invoices based on that.
This allowed for much better profit margins within my business, and to add that monthly security, I’d also require businesses to sign a contractual agreement that secured them for a certain amount of time. Not only did this ensure that they saw results from the services that I was offering and providing for them, but it also guaranteed security for me since I knew how long I would be working with somebody so that I could deliver month after month for that person. Truth be told, this might sound intimidating. I was intimidated when I first thought of “locking somebody in” to a binding agreement, but if you are delivering and doing your job on your end, your clients are not going to want out of the agreement and will want to re-sign with you when the agreement expires!
One of the main reasons that I never let go of the agency side of my business as I started offering more educational type offers, is because of the recurring revenue. It’s so nice to have a monthly base that is the same month after month because you have that guarantee and you’re not relying on the income from your launches to pay yourself, your employees, or whatever that looks like for you. Launches are great, but recurring revenue definitely beats the hype! There are so many different ways that you can get that recurring revenue in your business and I’m going to walk you through a few different ways that will really work – no matter what type of business that you have.
These are great for larger ticket purchases. You can see payment plans in businesses like Lowe’s Home Improvement. If you’re renovating a home, they have a Lowe’s credit card for you to put your balance on, and then you pay it off later. They might offer 0% interest for 6 months or something similar to this. This is getting them monthly recurring revenue and we can do that the same way for our businesses and offer payment plans. Just like credit cards, businesses typically add interest after a certain period so, as a convenience fee for you having to send more invoices and maybe even having to track down payments, you can add a 10-15% interest fee to the total number that is being paid and divide that up by however many invoices you are going to have to send to them. However, if that just doesn’t feel good to you, it is totally okay to split the original amount decided upon up evenly over 3-6 months, just depending on the cost and what your client can afford.
These tend to be more entry-level and lower ticket items within your business. Some examples are estheticians who put together facial and botox memberships, they’re super alluring because heck, who doesn’t want to go get a facial once a month and offer some added incentives to get into their membership programs?! I’m also sure that you probably have a gym membership of some sort, whether it’s CrossFit or one of the big box gyms, this is a prime example of getting recurring revenue and getting locked into a contractual agreement whether that’s 3 months, a year, or longer. We are going to be launching a content-focused membership in March and it’s going to be super exciting, we can’t wait for it, but, it’s going to be obviously an entry-level offer that is much cheaper than some of the other things that we offer. They can really get their content on lock and get business from their Instagram.
Another example of membership programs is stock photography memberships, this is something that I have used, especially because as were manage social media clients, we need photos to fill in the gaps depending on what our clients provide us as their photography or sometimes we need something a little bit more. Stock photography memberships are great if you have a creative agency of any sort! The list truly goes on but I’m sure that you can probably think of some sort of membership or subscription-style offer that would satisfy a need within your client or customer group and would give you recurring revenue for your business.
I mostly highlighted this idea at the beginning but these are typically going to be the higher-ticket, longer commitment, and more so suited for people who need services on an ongoing basis. Some examples of services that this would work the best for is social media management (this is what we do for our agency!), email marketing, copy marketing, ads, virtual assistants, graphic designers, website management, project management, online business managers, and online coaches. These are great ways to get somebody into an agreement and deliver your services on a month-to-month basis to get that recurring revenue flowing in your business!
By becoming an affiliate, you get to share about products that you already love while getting a kickback for them! There are a lot of different software and programs that you may use in your business that offer affiliate links, you can share these links with your clients or with your Instagram following. They provide a pretty nice kickback for your commission and it’s not hard to set up – it’s just a nice little added cushion on a month-to-month basis. We use ActiveCampaign, Canva, Dubsado, and ClickUp. Most of these are free to get started with and offer trial options, this is great because you don’t feel like you’re pitching somebody into having to sign up and pay for something. You’re just sharing what works well for you and your business!
From business owner to business owner, we’re always looking for better ways to do things more efficiently so you’re just sharing your methods with them and they can choose the paid option if they wanted to upgrade or they can stay with the free version – but if ever they do upgrade to that paid version, you are getting the kickback for that if they sign up with your link. Some other places that you can put these links are in your Instagram bio or if you have a podcast, you can share about your favorite tools and then include links to join in the episode description. As I was mentioning…our favorite things we have affiliate links for are ActiveCampaign, Canva, Dubsado, Kajabi, and ClickUp. You can click on these and take a peek if you’ve never heard of them before!
This is something that’s going to take some legwork to get started with, but once you’ve done the work, you can begin rolling in the dollar bills without blinking an eye! For example, one of the things we’ve turned evergreen in our business is our Instagram Ignite course. This has been something that we have live-launched about five different times and we have run it live in the past where I am showing up on zoom and teaching the lessons in a live format. Now, we have recorded all of the course material and it can be found and purchased in our Kajabi dashboard. So, this is something that people can head to our website and purchase and we do not even have to promote it or anything like that. We can just wake up and have $497 in our bank account because that’s how much the course costs and we didn’t even have to promote it since someone found it on our website.
For your business, take something that is within your zone of genius and that you feel confident educating about, and create an online course or some kind of digital product that teaches others how to achieve the goal that they’re wanting to achieve! I would definitely recommend running it live as we did for Instagram Ignite because that just validates that it’s something that people actually want. After you successfully launch it a couple of times, then you can turn to paid advertising by creating a powerful sales funnel that will make the sales for you “in your sleep” as people say!
I’ve said it before and I will say it again…recurring revenue in your business is absolutely necessary so you don’t spiral down the track of launching and launching and launching again just to make ends meet!!! There are many ways that you can reformat what you’re currently doing to get recurring based revenue every. single. month. Then, the launches that you choose to do are just a bonus and influx of money in your bank account. They will be something that you choose to do as a bonus instead of something that you were relying on to make ends meet and honestly when you are relying on the launches to go well, it’s never good energy and they will almost always flop…
To wrap it up, don’t forget these five ways to add recurring revenue to your business. Offer payment plans for higher ticket purchases, have membership and subscription-style offers, have monthly retainers for your services, become an affiliate for programs or products that you love, and lastly create an evergreen product or offer!