To Have Great Power, You Need to Take On Great Responsibility (Use WordPress)


#1

I actually came up with the idea for this as I was preparing for a presentation that I’m giving next week, at Podcast Movement 2018, in Philadelphia. Here’s the full episode:

And by the way, that’s a really awesome thing that’s happened for me recently.

I started my podcast over 2 years ago. Last year was my first time attending Podcast Movement, which is the biggest, most prestigious and most popular conference for podcasters IN THE WORLD. And I am a speaker this year. Woohoo!

And last year too, I got on stage, but only to introduce a different speaker, and I did it along with my “Guruji” puppet. You probably don’t know, but I’m an amateur Ventriloquist. Super amateur. And I have this old wise man puppet with a flowing white beard, like a bald Dumbledore, and his name is Wilson The Wise One, and I call him “Guruji”. And my schtick is that Guruji can be mean and wise and funny, and make fun of me, and dish out advice on everything from Life to Women to Podcasting and all things in between.

So I brought Guruji on stage (pic below) and I did a skit where we both introduced a speaker.

If you go to my instagram account at https://www.instagram.com/ravijayagopal/, you will see a picture of me and Guruji in front of a mic. And if you go to the show-notes for this episode at SubscribeMe.fm/72 , you can see all of the photos of me and Guruji there.

So that was at last year’s conference.

And this year, I’m speaking. As I record this, we’re 3 days away from Podcast Movement. And we fly to Philadelphia in 2 days. And my session is on the last day. It is titled:

How to Create a Premium Podcast & Deliver Patrons-Only Content Using a WordPress Membership Site

And I also talk about How to Deliver it in 4 Different Formats:
Player on a Page
Downloadable Files
**Members-Only Podcast RSS **
and a Mobile App

All of the members of my Digital Creators Academy will get access to a recording of my presentation once I have it in a couple of weeks.

But if you’re not a member of my academy, then go to subscribeme.fm/academy and you can join there.

And you will have chance to win a copy of the presentation even if you are not a member. I will have more details for you in the next episode.

But as I was creating the slides for my presentation, I have a section in there, where I talk about building your own platform, owning your platform, owning your domain, building everything on your own website, vs building it all on a third-party platform.

As I was doing a comparison table comparing third-party platforms versus your own WordPress site, I came up with the idea for today’s episode.

Do you remember Uncle Ben from Spider Man? He is Peter Parker’s uncle who gets killed by a burglar who is trying to escape after a robbery. So in the movie, Peter Parker, aka Spider Man, lets a burglar get away just a little bit earlier, and that same burglar ends up shooting and killing his Uncle Ben. And a dying Uncle Ben tells Peter, one of the most famous movie quotes ever. He tells him:

With great power, comes great responsibility.

It’s an amazing quote, no doubt.

But guess what? Uncle Ravi has a quote for you today, that’s going to put Uncle Ben’s quote to shame. Because, you know, Uncle Ravi is way smarter, and younger, and better looking, then Uncle Ben.

So my take on this, is to flip the Spider Man quote. Which is why I call it the “Man-Spider” Quote. Get it? Spider man revers? Man Spider? Ok.

The original quote from Uncle Ben… which is… With Great Power comes great responsibility. … actually doesn’t make much sense, for most people anyway.

It is basically telling me, that when I have great power, it comes with great responsibility. So it’s kind of like warning you and me that great power is to be wielded carefully.

But guess what? Most people listening to that quote can’t identify with that, because most of us are not at the point of wielding great power, or great influence, or great fame or great fortune.

We’re all aspiring to get there, including myself. I’m on my way, for sure. But I’m not where I had hoped I would be by this point in my life. But that’s ok. Everyday I’m hustling hustling.

Which is why my quote will make sense for more people: And that is:

To have great power you need to take on great responsibility

Makes sense right?

If you want to be among the best at what you do, you need to go the extra mile, you need to do more, you need to be better, you need to do things that most others won’t do, you need to work harder, work smarter, be more responsible, take on more responsibility, be a leader, and be remarkable.

If you’re the class clown, you’re never going to be selected to be the class leader.

If you just want to work 9 to 5 and do your tasks and get out, you’re not going to get a good enough promotion or a raise.

Trying to be the world’s greatest basketball player, like Michael Jordan or a LeBron James is a 100 times harder than even just becoming a NBA player, which by itself is ridiculously hard because out of hundreds of millions of people around the world, only about 450 players make it to the NBA each year.

So, if you want to get the point of having great power, or great influence, or great fame, you need to take on a great deal of responsibility, in everything you do, in everything you are.

And now bringing that thought back to creating an online business, if you want a great deal of power and control and flexibility in building your website and your online business, you need to use WordPress.

Yes, there are hosted platforms like Udemy and ClickFunnels and Patreon and Teachable and Kajabi and on and on and on.

But all of them have their limits.

The only platform without limits, is WordPress.

WordPress powers 31% of all sites across the web. Some of the biggest brands using WordPress are, eBay, Sony, GM, UPS, Forbes, CNN, Samsung, IBM, Tech Crunch, New York Times, Beyonce, Microsoft, Disney, Tim Ferriss, Seth Godin, even Facebook uses it for their newsroom at newsroom.fb.com .

There’s a reason why all of these companies didn’t go for some convenient hosted platform like ClickFunnels.

There’s a reason why the biggest of the biggest companies are not building their businesses on a third-party platform.

They want to control the look and feel, user experience, be able to implement the features they want, how they want them.

Starting with the weekend blogger to the solopreneur to the 10-or 100- or 10,000- person company, they want to accept payments and store those payment profiles within their own Paypal or Stripe or merchant accounts, and not have them be locked up in a third-party company’s payment processor. Like with Patreon or Udemy.

Once your users and their payment profiles are stored on someone else’s payment processor, and not that of your own, that means, you are stuck with them forever. You can never move, because if you move, and you want to migrate your users and their payments to a new platform, you have no other choice but to tell all of your users to cancel their current subscriptions with you, and then come with you to your new platform, and then re-sign up for a new subscription.

And with my 20 plus years of experience with customers, I can pretty much guarantee you that when you ask someone to cancel and then re-sign up, you’ll lose a majority of your users during the move. Even with something as simple as moving your list, if you ask your email subscribers to unsubscribe from your current list, and then click on a link and fill out a signup form and re-sign up for a new list at a new email platform, you’ll lose a massive chunk of free email subscribers. Now think how bad it will be when there is a payment involved, and even more so when there is a recurring payment involved.

So there are so many things you need to consider when building your online business:

  • You need to be able to control the look and feel of your website.
  • Include different components like Video and Audio and PDF.
  • And have a podcast player, if it’s a podcast website.
  • And have a sales video.
  • And create a landing page with various conversion elements - like social proof and scarcity and contemporary design and sections and video and images and add Facebook and Google pixels and be able to track to track visits and movement and conversion and cart abandonment
  • An easy to use but powerful shopping cart - like SmartPayCart.com - which lets you do 1-click upsells and downsells and order bumps and multi-pricing and accept payments via different payment processors like Paypal, Stripe, ClickBank, or even BitCoin.
  • of your choice - like
  • Be able to recruite your own affiliates who will promote your products and services for a commission
  • Offer 2-tier commissions if you wanted to, or just a single-tier.

There are just so many different components that go into building a long-term, profitable online business.

And if you go with WordPress, then there’s a plugin for pretty much anything and everything you can imagine.

And DigitalAccessPass.com and SmartPayCart.com - arguably the world’s best combination of membership platform and shopping cart platform, with Veena Prashanth, who is my lovely wife and Co-founder & co-developer of DAP and creator of SPC and a whole bunch of other plugins.

We already offer you the best combination of tools that you need to create and run your online business. And then there are plugins for everything else.

Your smartphone wouldn’t be very smart, if there was no app store and you couldn’t install apps from third-party companies that lets you enhance the features of your phone and apps that you let you do more than just the features that came with your phone.

Imagine if you had to just wait for Apple or Google to release a feature on their own, and there was no way to install any apps to do anything else. If they don’t make it a part of the system, and there were no apps other than those released by Apple or Google, then the internet would probably be way, way behind.

Similarly, when you host with a proprietary third-party system, you are completely and utterly reliant on them for all functionality.

But with WordPress, you have the equivalent of an app store - which is the WordPress plugin repository. Which lets you greatly enhance the features you want from your website.

So in 2018, when the biggest of the biggest companies and brands and celebrities are using WordPress, why would you even consider a third-party platform?

Whether it is to create a membership site, or an online course, and accept payments and be able to offer upsells and downsells and order bumps, and do email marketing with email autoresponders and broadcasts, allow every new member to become an instant affiliate to promote your products and even services, or to create a premium podcast, it would be mistake to not use WordPress for your business now and in the future.

And it would be an equally big mistake if you used WordPress and did not use DigitalAccessPass.com or SmartPayCart.com. Or CoolCastPlayer.com to power your podcast player. Or S3MediaVault.com to securely embed audio into your membership site. And use a combination of WordPress, PowerPress and DAP to securely deliver premium content in the member’s area for your members and subscribers.

Yes, WordPress can be a little bit of work. But what great thing has ever come without putting in some work?

Whether it is losing weight or running a marathon or putting on muscle, all the way to creating a website and create content and videos and PDF and a podcast to creating a landing page to setting up your online business, there is no quick-fix - there is no magic-wand that you can wave to have it all set up for you.

You have to install plugins. And themes. And set them up. And configure them. And make sure they play well with each other. And apply updates, and install security plugins, and so on.

And I can help you with figuring all of that. Check out my digital creators academy at SubscribeMe.fm/academy .

And you can get some 1-on-1 coaching and consulting with me with any of the membership options there.

And anytime you start wondering if the other side - the non-WordPress platform side - is greener, and you think you might be better off with a third-party system where you THINK that they take care of everything and you THINK that it will be easier than WordPress, just re-listen to this episode.

Especially the part about not being able to move your users or their payments to any other system, and if the third-party platform goes down, or closes its doors, or get bought out, you’re basically screwed. Overnight, you could lose 100% of your income from your members and subscribers.

And always remember the Reverse-Spiderman Quote from Uncle Ravi:

To have great power you need to take on great responsibility

Cheers!

// Ravi Jayagopal
Co-Founder & Co-Developer
https://DigitalAccessPass.com

Podcast Host


#2

Spot on Ravi.

I started using Patreon about 5 months ago to do the “membership” functions for my podcast qiological.com. I thought about doing on my website but I knew that I would need to hire a developer to help me. It would take 2-4 weeks to really get it working properly. And there would be issues.

With Patreon, basically I had a “membership” arm of my podcast in one afternoon.

I was being lazy.

Three months in I realized that having my listeners go to another site was just confusing for them. They are not a technical crowd. They did not understand that Patreon was providing the membership infrastructure. All they knew is that is was kind of connected to my website, but…but…meh…they were confused.

And as you pointed out, Patreon has the credit card numbers and the more my “membership” grew. The more I realized I was getting locked into a system that actually drew people away from my website.

So I bit the bullet. Retooled the website.

Yes, it took 2-3 weeks before it was ready to go live. Yes, I’m still working a few bugs out. But I’ve also gotten over half of my Patreons to re-sign up on MY website. Yep, I lost about half of my “Patreons” in the migration.

But here’s the good thing…

  • New member sign up’s are up by a factor of 2.
  • People like it that it is all just qiological, they are no longer confused by this “Patreon” thing.
  • All the branding is consistent.
  • I’m also now offering in person classes… right from the website.
  • Soon there will be offerings for online CEU courses… right from the website.
  • And when the book I’m working on with a friend comes out next year… we will sell it…yep, you guessed it… right from the website.

In short, I’m now poised for expansion and ecommerce, and it all happens right from the website my listeners have come to know and trust.

This does take more work. And it is worth it.


#3

That’s amazing. Did you do the website and software design or hire it out? I’m looking to design a new website that will connect with a Amazon S3 for storage (at least that’s my thought process at this time). We are looking at creating a podcast hosting platform (similar to others out there, but dedicated completely to supporting our niche).

Thanks!


#4

@rthibodeau, you can do this with WordPress, DigitalAccessPass.com (DAP) Amazon S3 & PowerPress.

DAP is among the very few membership plugins that can create a custom RSS feed for each of your members for the same media. And DAP is probably the only plugin that can track abuse of that feed by sharing with unauthorized members.

We set up premium podcasts and membership sites for our clients all the time, in our business, so that you can monetize your audience and keep control over the payments, the user experience, and the member’s area. And you can deliver a lot more than just audio. I have an online course about it at PremiumPodcasting.com.

We have a plugin S3MediaVault.com that is a secure audio and video player for files stored on Amazon S3.

And then we have CoolCastPlayer.com (CCP), which is an audio player, that can play any file stored anywhere, as well as being able to securely play protected files stored on Amazon S3. And CCP also comes with a feed player, a full playlist of your RSS feed - you can see it in action on my home page at SubscribeMe.fm .

But if you’re looking at building a podcast hosting platform, you’re going to be in for some very stiff competition from companies like Libsyn, PodBean, BluBrry, Spreaker, etc - who have tons of features, many integration with third-party directories, lots of automation, ability to submit to directories like Spotify. And don’t forget Anchor.fm, whose entire service is free, and they also offer some recent monetization options. Of course, I wouldn’t recommend them over Libsyn or other long-standing hosting platforms.

If you’re serious about creating your own podcasting platform, I can help you talk through the industry standards, challenges and potential pitfalls, before you sink a lot of money into the project. Let me know.

– Ravi Jayagopal


#5

Hi @rthibodeau

I did the original design and setup of the website, but then had my Wordpress Dude do the heavy lifting on the membership and subscription services.

You can use Amazon S3 or a podcast hosting service. There are plenty of ways to go with building this kind of functionality into your website. And as @RaviJayagopal points out, he has products and services to offer in that sphere as well.

What’s your niche?