Subscription Box Basics with Julie Ball

Improve Retention With Subscriber Perks

May 24, 2021 Julie Ball Episode 75
Subscription Box Basics with Julie Ball
Improve Retention With Subscriber Perks
Show Notes Transcript

#075 - The more we give subscribers that warm, fuzzy feeling that they're a part of something bigger, the more chance that there'll be loyal and come back month after month. So in this episode, we're going to be talking about five different types of subscriber perks to improve retention. We use these subscriber perks at Sparkle Hustle Grow and they really work well for us.


  • Perk #1: Products (00:01:13)
  • Perk #2: First dibs (00:02:25)
  • Perk #3: Events  (00:03:55)
  • Perk #4: Content (00:05:11)
  • Perk #5: Secret subscriber sale (00:07:39)


Julie (00:01): So you want to launch a subscription box and don't know where to start? Girl, you are in the right place. I'm Julie Ball, a subscription box coach and your host here at Subscription Box Basics, a podcast for new and aspiring subscription box entrepreneurs that want to avoid overwhelm. So grab a coffee, some pen and paper, and let's have some fun!

Hey everybody, welcome back to Subscription Box Basics, the podcast. I'm Julie Ball, and I am your subscription box business coach. Thanks so much for being here. If you haven't already, do me a favor, pause this, go subscribe, rate, and review this podcast so that more people can find it and start their own subscription box business.

Today, I'm talking about subscriber perks and I use subscriber perks at Sparkle Hustle Grow to improve retention. The more we give subscribers that warm, fuzzy feeling that they're a part of something bigger, the more chance that there'll be loyal and come back month after month after month. So today I'm going to be talking about five different types of subscriber perks that really worked well for us.

Julie (01:13): The first one is products. This one's a no-brainer. You have created a product-based business. So there's an easy way to create subscriber perks using products.

Maybe you have a subscribers-only product that you're not going to list in your store. Maybe there is an exclusive item that you have a limited quantity of. And what happens here is that your subscribers feel extra special when they get this kind of members-only perk that reminds me, do you guys remember those members only jackets, what, from the like seventies and eighties? I actually have one in pink. Of course, I do. I was randomly walking around my little town here with a friend of mine and we went into a thrift store and lo and behold there was a hot pink members-only jacket. So, of course, I had to buy it. And you may see me in some of my brand photography and had anyhow I digress products are the first subscriber perk that I wanted to talk about. So take a minute right now and just brainstorm some items.

Julie (02:25): Maybe there is a specific branded item that has your logo on it, or maybe you were able to just get a really, really good deal, but in limited quantity, think about how you might be able to offer those to your subscribers as an exclusive opportunity, which leads me to the second subscriber perk that I wanted to talk about is I call it first dibs.

So first dibs is just basically that they get first chance opportunity to do whatever it is that you're offering. So maybe it's that exclusive product and say you only have a hundred of them, or maybe you only have, you know, 500 of them, but you have a thousand subscribers. Well, you might not be putting them in the box because there's not enough, but you can share a link, a hidden link. I always like to make a hidden link when it's an exclusive subscriber-only perk.

You can share that link with your subscribers and tell them we're going to be listing this in the online shop next week. But you get first dibs because we have a limited quantity and it kind of gives them that not only that feeling of excitement because they got something special and they get first dibs at it, but it also gives them that sense of urgency of, okay, I probably need to buy this quickly because they're going to sell out of these next week when they list them publicly. So the first and the second one kind of go hand in hand, exclusive members-only products, and first dibs on them.

Julie (03:55): The third subscriber park that we love at Sparkle Hustle Grow is events. Now that could mean something in person like a meetup, but it could easily be something that's virtual. Every single month. We host two live events in Sparkle Hustle Grow.

We call one the happy hour and one, the helping hour, one of our team members hosts a zoom meeting where only our subscribers have the link and can jump on and connect with each other and talk about different topics. Our happy hour is more of kind of just a networking fun. Get to know each other type event. We don't record that one, but then our helping hour, we focus that one on a specific topic. And most times that topic is going to be related to the theme of the month for the box. And so we have the happy hour and the helping hour, but there could be all kinds of other events. You could do training events. You could just do coffee chats have fun with these. So events are a really, really great way to make them feel part of something bigger. And you get to know your subscribers so much better when you get to have that one-on-one interaction and really get to pour into them. So number three was events.

Julie (05:11): Number four is content. You can easily create subscribers-only content and take out a pen and paper. I'm going to give you a list of just a handful right now. So you could have a Clubhouse room where you go in there and you chit chat on Clubhouse. You could create playlists for different themes that you have in your box. You could create downloads. So those could be so many different things. Think about any sort of PDF that you might have, where it might be a planner, or it might be something of value where you're teaching something. It could be a list of affirmations. It could be a self-care checklist. There are so many things that you could create. We just use Canva. is a free online graphic design kind of software. And it's easy to use. They have so many templates and you can create something there, download it as a PDF, put it in your Google drive, and share it with a link. Super easy.

Another thing that we recently added as a subscriber perk is a secret Sparkle Hustle Grow podcast. And I am so excited about this. The more and more I talk to people. And the more I look at my own habits, people love to listen to audio because they can listen to it while they're doing laundry. Or while they're taking a walk or while they're doing whatever, it's just a really easy to consume media. So what we did is we have monthly Facebook live masterclasses, where we have an expert come in and teach us something about business in our Sparkle Hustle Grow Facebook group. So what we did then was took those masterclasses and use the software called Hello Audio. And I'll put a link in the show notes for that. I love Hello Audio. It basically allows you to take any audio and put it into a podcast feed.

So I'm planning to do that with Subscription Box Bootcamp. We do this with our masterclasses for Sparkle Hustle Grow, and we've called it our secret Sparkle Hustle Grow podcast. It's just a way to repurpose the content and make it more accessible. So that's just another way that you can create content. Make sure you check out the show notes for the link to Hello Audio. So you can check that out yourself and Canva. We'll put a link to Canva in there.

Julie (07:39): And lastly, one of my favorite subscriber perks is what we call a secret subscriber sale. Now this can be as simple as here's a coupon code for subscribers only to save X dollars or X percent in our online shop. And you can encourage people that are already spending money with you already know, like, and trust you as a brand, encourage them into your online shop to sell your excess inventory, give them a coupon code.

But I want to tell you a quick story of how we have used this secret subscriber sale in the past to generate $5,000 of revenue in literally three hours. I'm not even kidding. So you probably know extra inventory costs you money in space. It's just sitting there in your warehouse or in your garage or wherever you keep it and it stagnates your cash flow. And so what you can do is implement one of these secret sales. It's such a win-win, it gives your subscribers this awesome fun perk. It's like on subscribers-only shopping event. So it doubles as a membership park while it's offloading tons of inventory. In a matter of hours or days, we usually start promoting it about a week out, we'll create new bundles. So maybe we take our bestseller and bundle it with some products that aren't moving quite as well. And we create them new bundles.

Julie (09:14): We pre-promote these bundles and all of the sale details in our subscriber Facebook group, but also via email. We try to hit them in as many places as we can, so they don't miss out. We tell them exactly when the sale is going to go live. And the bundles that I was talking about, we have secret links to them and we share those secret links. When the sale goes live, we don't put them in our online shop where the general public can find them. And so we create this sense of urgency. We share that, you know, there's limited quantity. We share that it's only going to be going on for say 48 hours or however long you want it to go. And it creates this exclusive shopping event. It is like a feeding frenzy. Our subscribers get so excited about this and it doesn't always just have to be, you know, a new bundle.

For example, you could sell a five pack of something or a three-pack of something. It just gets more inventory out the door. It gives them discounts on it. And it doubles again as a membership perk. It's so fun. So if you're interested in doing one of those secret sales, we have a secret sales starter kit for you that has planners, swipe files, templates, and a 30-minute training to guide you step-by-step on how to do this guys. This is low-hanging fruit that you can really create some excitement for your members and offload tons of inventory. So we have this kit, you can find it at It's only $97 and you will easily make your money back in your first sale. And I promise you with the kit, with the secret sales starter kit, you'll be up and running like you can have your secret sale next week. So I just wanted to tell you a little bit about that secret sale as a subscriber perk.

Julie (11:14): So let's recap the five subscriber perks that we talked about today, that's going to help improve your retention and just make your members, your subscribers feel like they're a part of something bigger. So the first one was exclusive products. And the second one that goes hand in hand with that is a first dibs or first opportunity to get their hands on that product, that content or whatever it is that you are providing. Number three is events, whether that's in-person or even easier, a virtual event. Number four is content. So example our secret Sparkle Hustle Grow podcast, a Clubhouse room, a playlist, downloads, planners, whatever it is. Content, members-only content, and number five, a secret subscriber sale.

Now on top of all of these ideas, of course, having a Facebook group for your members gives you that place to connect with them. And it gives them a place to feel like they're part of a group, something that feels exclusive. So that will be number six, the subscriber group. I should have put that as number one, actually, but anyhow, hopefully this information was helpful. Try to choose one of these this week. What is it that you're going to implement? That makes it feel exclusive to be one of your subscribers' products, first dibs events, content, secrets sales, or a subscriber group? Which one is it going to be?

All right, guys, that's it for me today. Hope you were able to catch last week's episode too, where I talked with my good friend, my box bestie, Jessica Principe, and we talked about what to do with your excess inventory. And that secret sale that I mentioned in this podcast is one of our absolute favorite ways to offload excess inventory and to create a membership perk to improve retention for your subscription box.

All right, guys, hope you have a great day. Thanks for listening as always. And we'll see you in the next episode.