Many Ontraport users have realized the potential of membership sites, and we’ve been pleasantly surprised to discover some of the innovative ways they’ve utilized Ontraport’s features to manage and enhance them.

Here are some of the creative ways six Ontraport users are optimizing their membership sites:

Membership Sites: Gigi Guides

Bianca Gignac

Gigi Guides is a site that provides members with curated local expertise to make traveling in Italy a unique cultural experience.

Because people often travel with a companion, Bianca and her team wanted to make sure her clients could share access to Gigi Guides with a friend. The team was able to use Ontraport to create two records with one purchase. Once the membership is purchased, the friends receive a follow-up series of emails, beginning with an email informing them that their friend bought them a gift. “We’ve never seen anyone else do this with a member site, and we had to invent the process,” Bianca said. Ontraport’s API capabilities are what gave them the ability to create such a unique automation process for their business. 

Bianca also sends automated pre-trip emails through Ontraport, triggered at the appropriate time based on the date of the upcoming trip. For example, if a member has an upcoming trip to Rome, she’ll send out an email reminder two weeks in advance to make restaurant reservations and an email one week in advance with packing tips. Using Ontraport, Bianca and her team are able to deliver the right messages at the right time to ensure her clients have a positive experience traveling with Gigi Guides, increasing the likelihood they will recommend her guides to a friend. 

“Push the boundaries of what the technology can do,” Bianca advises. “Ontraport is the engine inside your Lamborghini, but your company needs to constantly innovate inside the technology to elevate customer success.”

Membership Sites: Book More Brides

Jeff and Stephanie Padovani

Book More Brides helps wedding professionals (photographers, DJs, wedding planners, etc.) market and promote themselves to fill up their booking calendar and increase their income.

Jeff and Stephanie use Ontraport to drip release content to keep members heavily engaged over time. They also email weekly “action challenges” and reminders of new content that’s to come.

Using Ontraport to generate referral links and automate their entire referral process, the Padovanis significantly grew their client list. They were also able to hone in on the hottest prospects, based on their actions in their campaign, and target them for special offers using Ontraport’s rules. They could segment leads and set up automated campaigns centered around specific interests.

“It’s super convenient… [because] everything’s all in one place,” they said, “so we don’t need an extra integration.”

Membership Sites: The Restaurant Boss

Ryan Gromfin

The Restaurant Boss provides online resources for restaurant owners to better operate their businesses and train their staff.

One of Ryan’s favorite features “hands down” is the ability to show and hide content while controlling what page visitors are redirected to based on levels or tags. “The icons will be in color if they own the product or black and white if not,” he said. “Ontraport easily allows for this functionality plus the ability to redirect to different pages when clicked.”  

By showing all members everything the site has to offer, even if they haven’t purchased full access, they’re more likely to be enticed to purchase higher levels of membership or other upsell offers.

Ryan also uses an indoctrination campaign wherein blog posts have a lead magnet that requires email opt-in. These leads are then segmented based on the magnet to which they opted in. Each one is sent to a low-cost high-value tripwire.

Membership Site: Owners Academy

Matthew Kostanecki

Owners Academy walks people through the steps needed to build a business they love and is made up of two parts: courses and community.

Matthew attributes the site’s success to the automated campaigns and emails he creates in Ontraport. After members successfully sign up and pay, they’re added to the course email series and get one email a week for each module. These automated email campaigns allow Matthew to continuously deliver valuable content to his members while giving him time to focus on other aspects of his business.    

Members stay engaged with weekly emails encouraging them to post in the “accountability” forum about the one thing they plan on accomplishing. Matthew also sends broadcast emails highlighting interesting success stories shared by other members in the forum. Matthew can provide members with the option to get updates every time something is posted to keep the community closely connected, and it’s all done in Ontraport.

Another favorite feature of his is the ability to create landing pages in Ontraport, which he explains “especially come in handy” when he opens and closes course registrations. The functionality of the landing page builder gives him control to publish and unpublish his pages according to his registration schedule. He also praises the ability to host videos and take payments on any landing page.

When it comes to membership sites, Kostanecki highly recommends all-in-one systems. “As an entrepreneur, you want to limit the complexity of your system as much as possible,” he said. “The less complex, the less likely it is that something will go wrong.”

Membership Sites: Basic Bananas

Christo Hall and Franziska Iseli

Basic Bananas gives business owners expert marketing strategies at their fingertips.

Christo and Franziska welcome new members with an email series. The series includes videos to familiarize new members with the site and show them how to get the most out of their membership. Christo and Franziska use Ontraport’s CRM to pull the client’s information stored in their contact database to ensure each new member receives the appropriate content. In addition, they use the CRM to send a welcome gift box by direct mail to make their members truly feel welcomed by the community. 

The automated list segmentation abilities in Ontraport play a key role in Basic Bananas’ sales and marketing funnels. The team runs lots of events, so they built a campaign within Ontraport to engage their traffic, register people (including collecting payment) and send automated reminders leading up to the events. 

Ontraport ensures Christo and Franziska don’t miss a beat, whether it’s in nurturing their clients or in orchestrating their events. “We have around 40 workshops running in 13 different cities every month. Ontraport ensures everyone gets the correct reminder, info they need, and follow-ups,” Christo said. “This would be impossible for a team member to manage — and it’s all automated. Our new members are added to their correct group without any human intervention.”

Membership Sites: The Chartist

Nick and Trish Radge

The Chartist simplifies the trading and investment process for busy people by providing strategies for the Australian and US stock markets, trading education, and an active community forum for members.

Nick and Trish use Ontraport for nearly every aspect of their membership site. They offer their clients a two-week trial and use an onboarding campaign to send out reminders to trial participants when the end of the trial is near. Because of the up-and-down nature of the stock market, Nick and Trish make sure to update their site every day with their recommended trading strategies based on that day’s market. Ontraport allows them to keep their members up-to-date by sending out email reminders to let the community know to log in and view the daily trade recommendations. By using Ontraport to implement this strategy, Nick and Trish were able to improve their members’ experience to improve customer retention.

Trish and Nick use Ontraport for their PR efforts as well. They use Ontraport Pages to capture leads who listen to Nick’s popular podcast. After providing their email addresses in exchange for an ebook, the listeners are placed on a nurturing campaign. “He did one podcast with 45,000 listeners more than 12 months ago. We’re still getting people every day opting in from that,” Trish said.

Their best piece of advice for membership owners? “Keep it simple!…Do one or two things, and do them really well.”


About Camille Smith
Originally from the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia, Content Marketing Strategist, Camille Smith came out to California to attend UCSB and fell in love with Santa Barbara’s perfect mountain to ocean ratio. During her time in college, Camille also worked on the growth marketing teams for several technology companies. When she’s not putting her Communication degree to use at work, she’s using her minor in French to remind everyone the correct pronunciation of her name à la française (pronounced cah-mee, not kah-meal).