If you are interested in experiencing Big Ridge first-hand, you may now sign up for a complimentary provisional membership. What follows are my thoughts on why we’re offering this type of membership, a description of how it will work, and a recent picture of Daisy in the pasture on a frosty morning.

What are Provisional Memberships and how do they work?

Provisional memberships allow prospective members to create a simple account that gives them access to our calendar and allows them to make a single reservation. So, if you are interested in Big Ridge, we’ve built this just for you, and I’d be delighted if you sign up and check it out.

A few things important details:

1) I personally review each sign-up request to make sure I know you well enough to welcome you to Big Ridge Mountain Club for a visit. If we don’t yet know each other, expect me to reach out and introduce myself. In most cases, I’ll either confirm your account or contact you pretty quickly, but it might take me a bit. Thanks in advance for your patience!

2) Upon confirmation, you’ll have access to the platform and will be able to make a single reservation up to six months into the future. After your visit, I’ll share our current membership options and invite you to join. If you decide Big Ridge membership is for you, we’ll upgrade your account from provisional to full and you’ll be able to begin making more reservations (I think it’s worth noting that new members’ first payments don’t begin until the date of their first reservation; that just seemed to me like the appropriate way to structure it). And if you decide membership is not for you, that’s just fine. Big Ridge is a no judgement zone. I’ll archive your account, and you’ll lose access to the platform.

3) At present, there is no charge for a provisional membership, but that may change. I don’t expect to be overwhelmed by a flood of sign-ups and reservations, but if, over time, provisional memberships start to get in the way of our full members’ use and enjoyment of Big Ridge, we’ll switch things up. We may create a wait list for provisionals, we might start charging something, and we’ll probably archive older accounts that haven’t yet booked a visit.

So, that’s how it works. If you are interested in learning about Big Ridge first hand, sign up for a provisional membership and begin checking out the options you have to visit.

Why are you offering Provisional Memberships?

A thing I love about recurring revenue businesses—especially when it’s easy for the customer to stop being a customer—is that a successful proprietor’s focus stays on caring for a very defined group of customers. I believe that focus produces a better outcome for both the customer and the proprietor. This is a big part of why Big Ridge Mountain Club is a club rather than a short-term rental or a hotel.

Another thing I like about clubs is the proprietor benefits from having a very long relationship with happy members. High churn recurring revenue businesses (be they clubs or software companies) don’t survive, and low churn recurring revenue businesses thrive.

Big Ridge has now been open for about 20 months and though I am sure we will eventually have some cancellations, so far, we have 100% retention, meaning none have canceled (yet). That feels pretty good. I know there will come a day when this isn’t the case, but today is not that day!

I think part of the reason for our strong retention rate is that all of our members have visited Big Ridge before joining (fun stat: our prospective-member-who-visits-to-actual-member-who-joins conversion rate is around 60%). The great thing about offering this informal “trial” is those who do join begin their membership with eyes wide open. This is great for them as they know exactly what they’re buying, but it’s also great for the proprietor, as he (in this case, me!) wants long-lasting relationships.

With all that in mind, we’ve created this provisional membership type to formalize the “trial” that we’ve been extending to everyone since we opened our doors in June of 2022.

Thanks for reading! I look forward to seeing you in the mountains.

Posted on February 16, 2024 by Geoff Graham