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The Membership that Created Tremendous Opportunity

In this episode I’m joined by Trupti Karjinni, who has done some phenomenal things in the last nine months with her membership. In this interview, she unpacks how she went from $1,400 per month selling her art, to consistently generating $5,000+ per month with her membership.

Q&A with Trupti

How it all started [1:32]

Stu McLaren: I know a membership wasn’t even on your radar. Let’s go back to who was it that you served in your audience first? And how had you been serving them?

Trupti Karjinni: I serve watercolor enthusiasts who want to learn the skills and the mindset to create confidently without fear and become thriving artists. I’m not new to teaching online, I’ve been doing it for more than two years. And before I even thought of doing a membership, I was teaching one or two hour long monthly classes on a very popular online learning platform. 

Stu McLaren: You had also been building your audience on Instagram as well. Is that right? 

Trupti Karjinni: Yeah. That is something I focused on right from the beginning of my journey as an artist, and it came in handy when I was creating my membership. I really focused on creating genuine connections and relationships with my audience in terms of responding to every comment and every PM, really just forming strong bonds of friendship with my audience and not looking at them as some sort of commodity whom I have to sell.

When did Trupti first start thinking about a membership? [3:51]

Stu McLaren: I know you have had a tremendous response from your audience as it relates to your membership. When did you first start thinking that a membership might be a good fit for your audience?

Trupti Karjinni: I think it was exactly a year ago today. It was this weird time when I had no idea about where to take my business, because I had a product-based business, and I was also teaching online. I came across your Instagram profile and read all the wins that you had shared in the highlights. I remember looking at the numbers and thinking, what is this incredible business model? I had never entertained something like this because I wasn’t even aware of it.

Then COVID happened. Towards the end of March, our country went into lockdown, and my product business got shut down overnight. We couldn’t ship anything out of the country because most of our audiences in the US and Canada couldn’t ship anything out. We couldn’t even go to our studio to do any work. But when one door closes, another door opens. And that’s when you started talking about memberships in your free group on Facebook. It was perfect timing, and I never felt sad even once that my product business got shut down, because it created this space for me to really think about what a membership could do for me and my business.

The founding member launch [6:30]

Stu McLaren: Let’s rewind back to the very first moment when you did your founding member launch. What was going through your mind and what happened? 

Trupti Karjinni: It’s such a stark contrast to where I am today. I did my founding members launch on the 1st of May right after you wrapped up your three days of the free live training. I was electrified by that charged atmosphere. When I looked at someone else’s success and saw what they were doing in their business, instead of having imposter syndrome, I saw what was possible for me. I urged to do the founding members launch because what you were saying seemed so simple. All I needed to do was send one email. And when I did it, I remember being in a place of fear and doubt, but it was incredible thinking that this is just all going to work out. I kept it open for five days, and 33 people joined me. 

Stu McLaren: I just commend you because so often we hear about an idea, or a strategy, and yet we freeze and don’t take action on it. But you moved through that fear, and 33 people responded. What were you feeling when it happened? 

Trupti Karjinni: Just five days later I was thinking, what happened in my world? I thought I’ll write a couple of emails, put it out there and just see how it goes. I had an idea which wasn’t even fully fleshed out, and I told my people that I don’t have anything to show for it but I really believe that it’s going to be good. It was incredible that 33 people decided to bet on me, and I felt very blessed.

Growing the membership [9:45]

Stu McLaren: I know that a lot has happened since, because here we are nine months later and the membership has continued to grow and pick up momentum. When you did the founding member launch, did you offer a lower price for those original founding members? 

Trupti Karjinni: Yeah, I offered them $19 a month for a lifetime as long as they stayed in the membership, and I also have a product-based business where we make handcrafted watercolors and the art supplies, it ties in so well with me teaching watercolors and being the watercolor artist. So, I gave them a founding member gift of these products and I said I would ship it to them at a discounted rate when shipping opens. 

Stu McLaren: Amazing. From there, how did you begin to get clear on what your membership was going to look like, and how did you begin to grow it? 

Trupti Karjinni: I feel like the founding member launch is brilliant in so many aspects because it always comes into play in any number of launches that you do after. I really liked that it was a very close-knit community of 33 people, and I would just run ideas by them. It was so good to have them all pitch in and build the actual membership based on what they wanted. 

Stu McLaren: I think this is a really important lesson for everybody. The real value of a founding member launch is in working with your members, getting the clarity of exactly what they want, and shaping the membership to be able to fulfill that, which makes it even more appealing before going out to your greater audience afterwards. Would you agree? 

Trupti Karjinni: I 100% agree. It’s not just about what content is going into your membership, it also gives you an opportunity to create and nurture the exact culture that you want in your membership. My founding members ended up embodying that culture and becoming my mascots when I did my official launch, which is incredible.

The first official launch and growing to 185 members [12:50]

Stu McLaren: Now, you’re about to launch it out to the public. What did you do specifically for the next launch where you opened it up to the general public from there? 

Trupti Karjinni: The one thing that I did well was implementing everything I was learning in TRIBE. I was moving as the course was moving forward, and that really saved me a lot of being in my head and staying in my fears. I remember launching a week after we wrapped up the course. The content was made, the marketing was done, the website was done, which is crazy because I wouldn’t have imagined getting that much work done in such a short time had it not been for the amazing community, for other people sharing their wins and pushing me on. 

We did a launch to my Instagram audience on my email list. It was all organic, there were no ads, and we ended up having 154 people join in July when I officially opened the doors to my membership. Then, I’ve grown my membership to 185 members, and we touched $10,000. It was a proper five-figure launch. 

Stu McLaren: From that one launch with 154 members, what was going through your mind? 

Trupti Karjinni: It was way too overwhelming. When I said I was teaching online on this very popular online learning platform, my best month would earn me $1,400 max. That was it. Imagine going from earning just that to now having 185 members each paying a membership price of $27 a month.

How has Trupti’s life changed? [15:59]

Stu McLaren: Let’s talk about where you are right now. What’s the membership grown to now? 

Trupti Karjinni: I just wrapped up my second big launch in the first week of January, and we’re at 260 members. In fact, the recurring subscription cycle is starting from today. This time last year I wasn’t even entertaining the idea that I would one day have my membership and that my business would reach six figures in 2020. 

Stu McLaren: How has this opened your mind to what’s possible now?

Trupti Karjinni: My whole lifestyle and outlook on life have changed. I feel like what gets pushed to the background is how much you grow with your mindset when you launch a membership, especially with having an abundance mindset. Earlier, I used to live in a place of fear. But now, I swim in gratitude and live in a place of possibility. It’s had such a ripple effect. My husband is now working as a business integrator in my business. He was the one who just stepped up and had me set up the membership while I work in my zone of genius. My way of working has changed. My team has grown. And I feel like now I finally have stepped into the role of a creative entrepreneur.

On impacting your members’ lives [18:18]

Stu McLaren: I can feel it in you, and I know from our conversations how much the community means to you. Talk to me about the relationship that you’ve developed with the members of your membership.

Trupti Karjinni: I love them to the ends of the Earth. It’s incredible because these artists came to me from such a place of fear. They all had starving artist mindsets, they’ve been conditioned by society to think that they are just going to amount to anything, it’s not worth putting money or effort into. Now, I look at this stream of wins that come into the Facebook group of the community of my membership, and I can’t believe I get to impact actual human lives. It’s not just the fact that they’re painting something from my membership, but the fact that they believe that they’re artists.

Final thoughts and advice [20:10]

Stu McLaren: As we look to wrap up, I want to get your thoughts because there are people who are right where you were less than a year ago. What advice would you give them as you have gone through this journey in the last nine months?

Trupti Karjinni: This business model is so brilliant because it literally fits in whatever market someone is in. What really blows my mind is that it’s so easy to get started. The founding member launch is just a couple of emails, maybe just one Facebook post, no matter how small your audience is. And I think what I’ve learned from you, Stu, is to just begin. Because that leads to momentum, momentum leads to consistency, then consistency leads to results and success. On the day that I was doing my founding members launch, I couldn’t have even conceived of everything that I have today. There’s so much more waiting for us out there. I was struggling to make $1,400 from my online courses, and now my monthly revenue is $5,500. That doesn’t even include all the extra bonus stuff and nine months to have generated $42,000 of revenue. I really hope that whoever is listening starts doing this too.

Memorable Quotes

Just begin, because that leads to momentum, which leads to consistency, and then consistency leads to results and success.” – Trupti Karjinni


Blue Pine Arts

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