How to Drip Feed Content

David Bullock — 

Drip feeding content is a powerful content delivery model with several applications and benefits for both the membership site owner, and for the people who consume the content.

Drip feeding is essentially the process of scheduling the delivery of content to the user, so that they don’t get all the content at once.

Memberium uses tags to control drip feeds, which has powerful benefits for ensuring that the any email follow up sequences tied to the drip campaign can be synchronized reliably.

Pro Tip
Do NOT create a membership level for each module of your dripped content. Create a single membership level to cover the entire course, and use individual tags to unlock each module.

Drip Feeding has the following benefits:

  • By delivering the content in smaller pieces, in a structured manner, it helps you protect your members from overwhelm by keeping them focussed on the current material.
  • Increase retention by structuring member engagement.
  • The more content there is, the more effective drip feeding is in preventing overwhelm and maintaining focus.
  • For trial accounts or money back guarantees, drip feeds can help prevent users from “raiding” the content before doing an intentional cancel.
  • To keep your students in sync with the teacher and other students.
  • For coordination of online and “real-world” events, content drips can help deliver content in a timely manner to our event.
  • Using a content drip allows the site owner to launch with less content completed. Since the content is is time released, future content can be developed later, after the site launches.
  • The time delayed delivery of content gives you an opportunity to test and measure how well your members are engaging with the content and pivot or correct your future content as needed.
  • Drip feeding can create additional revenue opportunities. If your content is already fully produced you can sell the ability to unlock all the content at once as an upsell offer for those who want unlimited access.

Drip Feed Models

Often, Drip feeding content is referred to in general terms, however there are several different models of content drip feeding.

  • Simple Evergreen Drip
    The “classic” drip, which runs based on a start date for the member.
  • Fixed Date Drip
    A drip where each item is released based on a calendar date. This is the most common kind of drip.
  • Activity Based Drip
    This drip is interactive, and the future release of content is controlled or influenced by the activities or progress of the member.
  • Issue Based Drip
    Issue based drips are similar fixed date drips, with the added behavior that content released before the member joins the drip is not made available to the member.
  • Manual Drip
    Not really a typical drip, the manual drip is controlled by an administrator or staff member that releases new content in a serial manner.

Showing and Hiding Dripped Items from the Menu

Because Memberium implements tag based drip feeds, other components of the system can be reliably synchronized. Memberium for example, will control the display of menu items based on whether or not the user has access. No special configuration or effort is needed.

Pro Tip
You can also use [memb_can_view_post] in your page to conditionally display links to your content if the user has access. You can build powerful and attractive menus this way.

Your Drip Toolbox

  • Campaign Builder to schedule and control applying tags.
  • Delay Timers, to space out when tags are applied by time delay.
  • Date Timers, to space out when tags are applied by dates.
  • Legacy Actionsets, to run HTTP POSTs. Legacy HTTP POSTs are preferred over Campaign Builder HTTP POST.
  • Send Email – To notify the member of their newly unlocked content.

Implementing Simple Evergreen Drips

The Evergreen drip is one of the simpler drips to setup. Each module is released on a set schedule determined by the date that each individual member starts the drip campaign. Each person in the drip will receive the same content on the same schedule relative to the start date

Only members who start on the same date will receive the content at the same time.

Evergreen drips are built using Campaign Builder and Delay Timers.

Below is a simple concept campaign for a 3 week long evergreen drip, where the content is dispensed every 7 days.

simple-evergreen-drip

Implementing Fixed Date Drips

The Fixed date drip requires more work to setup than an evergreen drip. Each module is released on a set schedule determined by the start date of the drip. Each module of content is released on a set calendar date, and each person in the drip will receive the same content on the same day regardless of when they joined.

Fixed date drips can be implemented in Campaign Builder using “Date Timers” instead of “Delay Timers”. Date Timers operate off of a fixed calendar date instead of a delay.

fixed-date-drip

Implementing Activity Based Drips

The activity based drip is another style of evergreen drip that slightly more complex than a simple evergreen drip. In an activity based drip, the content is delayed pending an activity completed by the member Each member moves through the drip at their own rate, throttled and delayed by the drip. The drip can continue on a pre-set schedule or stop if the actions arenot taken, depending on what works best for the particular drip.

An activity based drip is commonly used with training delivery where testing is involved. As each user completes the required actions (for example, passing a test), their delay timer is advanced to deliver the next piece of content without waiting for the full, default time period to pass.

You can use several different tools to record actions, and cause tags to be applied, including but not limited to:

  • Email Link Clicks
  • Email Opens
  • Action Button clicks in Memberium
  • Action Link clicks in Memberium
  • LearnDash module completions (Woo Sensei or WP Courseware as well)

Implementing Issue Based Drips

In the issue-based drip model, members are delivered content based on when they joined the membership, and do not automatically receive content published from before they joined. In Memberium’s implementation of the Issue Based Subscription Model, we further support creating multiple channels that users can subscribe to, much like individual magazines.

This is the most complicated model to setup, and we have provided a standalone document on how to implement it.

Implementing Manual Drips

Manual drips are simply controlled by a staff or administrator member and are a variation on fixed date based drips. They are not evergreen, and like an issue based drip, the members do not receive any content that was released prior to the date they joined the drip.

In the manual drip, the staff member applies the drip tags to the members of the course when they are ready for the members to receive the content. Once the access tags are applied, an email blast is set to notify the members that the next module is available.

Manual drips are often used when content is still being developed, and may be the basis of a future evergreen content drip.