Should You Launch a Membership Program For Your Venue? with Rami Haykal-Manning, Founder of Elsewhere

It may be time to step into the world of memberships, to create realms where every fan is a member, every member is a believer, and every venue is a sanctuary.
Avante Price
September 28, 2023
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The new age of hospitality and entertainment businesses is evolving, and in this sea of ever-growing competition, establishing a loyal customer base is the key to sustainability and success.

Have you ever thought about launching a membership program for your venue?

If not, let Rami Haykal-Manning, the renowned founder of Elsewhere, one of Brooklyn's most infamous nightclubs, take you on a journey of revolutionizing customer engagement through membership programs.

But first, be sure to catch our full-length episode of HOSTED with Rami:

Bridging the Fan-Club Gap

Elsewhere stands out amongst the massive strip of Brooklyn venues by operating one of the unique membership programs in the scene. It all started from a desire to bridge the gap between die-hard fans and high ticket prices, a common setback that fans often encounter.

“The reason why we decided to develop a membership program was to allow our biggest fans to be able to come to the venue more often,” explains Rami.

The nightlife industry has witnessed a seismic shift from the days when ticket prices were a mere $6 or $7. This surge has been challenging for regular attendees, leading to Elsewhere’s innovative solution.

This program was not just about facilitating entry but fostering a community. A diverse array of perks and a digitized platform were integrated, creating a holistic approach to the member's experience.

This digital space on Discord is a beacon for fans, allowing them to connect pre-show, post-show, and exchange information, echoing the primary, community-driven concepts of the Internet.

Crafting Communities & Amplifying Experience

The digital realm has reinstated the forum era style, enabling users to share, interact, and be part of a larger community for the common good. It’s the revival of the Internet’s original essence, where information and camaraderie flowed seamlessly, adding value to the net.

Rami’s initiative has resonated with the roots, creating a symbiotic relationship between the venue and its loyal members.

The membership program at Elsewhere is not just a model; it's a manifestation of a visionary's desire to create a harmonious space for fans and artists alike. It stands as a testament to the limitless possibilities that arise when the focus shifts from mere profit-making to community building and enhancing the overall experience of the attendees.

For venue owners, initiating a membership program can be the linchpin in creating a loyal and engaged audience. It’s about constructing an ecosystem where the members feel valued, connected, and part of a unique experience that goes beyond just attending an event.

A Step Towards Fostering Fan Relationship

So, how can venue owners, like yourself, create a thriving membership program, and why should you consider it earnestly?

1. Forge Strong Relationships:

Building a membership program is equivalent to investing in long-term relationships with your audience. It’s about creating an environment where they feel heard, valued, and integral to the venue's existence.

2. Create Exclusive Perks:

Develop a slew of benefits and perks that are not only easy to understand but also add substantial value to the members. Early access to tickets, exclusive events, and special discounts can be the driving factors in attracting more members.

3. Leverage Digital Platforms:

Embrace the digital sphere to amplify the reach and impact of your program. A platform like Discord can be instrumental in allowing members to interact, share experiences, and connect on a deeper level, fostering a sense of community.

4. Align with Community Values:

Understanding and aligning your program with the values and desires of your community can be the key to its success. It’s not about just creating a program; it’s about creating a movement that resonates with the hearts of your members.

5. Iterate and Innovate:

Continuously evaluate the effectiveness of your program, listen to the feedback from your members, and be willing to adapt and innovate to meet their evolving needs and expectations.

A Venue's Voyage to Innovation

Elsewhere has delineated the path to enriching fan experiences and community building, emphasizing the power of connection and mutual growth. The essence of the membership program is a reflection of Elsewhere’s commitment to its fans and the relentless pursuit to be more than just a venue, but a home for music aficionados and artists alike.

A Paradigm Shift for Venues

The infusion of membership programs represents the transformative journey venues can undertake. It’s a call for venue owners to rethink their strategies, to shift their focus from being transactional to being transformational.

It’s about looking beyond the conventional norms and embracing the profound impact of communal existence and shared experiences.

Rami Haykal-Manning’s initiative is not merely a model to emulate; it’s a reminder of the boundless possibilities and the rich tapestry of experiences venues can offer. It may be time to step into the world of memberships, to create realms where every fan is a member, every member is a believer, and every venue is a sanctuary.

To venue owners ready to embark on this transformative journey, consider your loyal patrons, think about the community you can build, and envision the legacy you can create. The road to success is paved with innovation, connection, and a relentless pursuit to be a beacon of change in the dynamic world of entertainment.

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