Lots of influencers and celebrities have their own dedicated fan clubs—groups of people who have a common interest in supporting and celebrating the work of a specific celebrity or group.
In many cases, these fan clubs are informal organizations headed up by a few devoted fans. In other cases, they’re owned/managed by the celebrity or their PR/publicist team. What many might not realize is that a “free” subscription fan club can actually become a powerful revenue stream for celebrities.
Here’s how celebs and their managers can turn a free fan club subscription into a revenue stream:
Step 1: move as many fans as possible into your free fan app
The first step that any celeb or PR team should take when getting ready to turn their free fan club subscription is to get as many of their fans as possible onto a dedicated mobile app for the fan club.
This app can be marketed as the best way for fan club members to get their exclusive fan club rewards and news as well as connect with other fans. The more fans that celebs can get onto their personal app, the better.
Step 2: create a lot of quality content for the app
Just getting fans onto the app isn’t enough—celebs have to keep fans engaged with the app so they’ll check it at regular intervals. This is where producing quality content for the app becomes important.
By giving the free fan club subscribers access to great posts, videos, and podcasts on the app, celebs can keep their fans active and engaged with the app and all it has to offer. Plus, this can help make the app more attractive to new fans, encouraging them to download it.
Step 3: add an online shop to the app
After attracting fans to the app, celebs can add an online storefront to the app that’s loaded with branded gear. This gives the app’s users a convenient place to order gear while creating a new revenue stream for the celebrity.
Step 4: create premium, pay-per-view content
After establishing a comprehensive backlog of quality content, it may be time to create premium content that’s only available through the app. For example, celebs could make pay-per-view videos that, for the first 3-7 days that they’re up, are only available to watch for a fee.
Super fans will want to watch these videos ASAP and will be willing to pay for the early access, while other fans can wait to get the content-vids for free. The eventual free access helps make it so non-paying fans don’t feel left out.
Step 5: offer a premium, paid subscription
After establishing paid content on the app, celebs could then add a new “premium” subscription tier that gives their fans access to all of their premium content as well as other bonuses for a set period of time.
To get fans to pay for a premium tier, it’s important to make sure that they perceive the subscription as a valuable offer. So, the sweeter the bonuses, the better. Some benefits celebs could offer as part of the subscription include:
- Early Access to In-App Content. There are many people who would eagerly pay a premium for early access to new videos from their favorite celebrities.
- Celebrity Shop Discounts. Some people may be incentivized by a discount in the shop. In fact, getting a 10% discount on store items may encourage fans to buy things that they might not have purchased otherwise because of the perceived value.
- Exclusive Live Stream Access. Fans only get one chance to see a live stream as it happens. Adding exclusive access to live streaming events to premium subscribers in the app can be a powerful incentive to pay for a premium subscription.
These are just a few of the potential ways that a celeb could incentivize fans to join a premium subscription service.
Step 6: consider ads and cross-promotions
Another way that celebrities can turn their free subscription fans into a revenue stream is to share advertisements and sponsored cross-promotions with them. The more subscribers that see these ads in the app, the larger the revenue stream.
However, this should be handled carefully, as too many ads or partnering with the wrong company/brand could put off fans—driving them away from the app rather than towards it.
Following these steps can help celebrities turn their free subscription fans into a significant revenue source.
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