People Like Us (PLU) will introduce a subscription fee within the next few months. Membership will cost $83.88 per year with discounts for multiple year pre-payment. It sounds like this money will be put into advertising and outreach for the network. I assume some of it will also be used the cover the costs of running the network.
Over the past two years I’ve invested tens of thousands of dollars of my own money and thousands of hours of effort in establishing and running the site but it’s currently limited by my own time and resources. I’m a bottleneck!
We need to grow and to do that, I need funds to invest.
Over the past year, our impressive growth has been achieved without any paid advertising. Think of what could be achieved if we were able to advertise like the big guys!
When the subscription “Premium” membership is introduced, PLU will also roll out a “Basic” membership. The basic level will be free, but with limited functionality. Essentially Basic membership just lets folks try out PLU before they decide to pay. Many networks have variations on this free trial. One novel feature: Basic members will be able to express interest in a swap with paying members:
Basic members will not be able to contact other members via the PLU messaging system but will be able to send a nudge to express interest in another member’s home and receive a positive or negative response (like a thumbs up / thumbs down response). They will also be able to receive nudges from other members and provide a response. Nudges will allow Basic members the ability to gauge interest in their homes without having to pay to join.
Exchanges can only be finalized between Premium members.
There are currently almost 3000 listings on People Like Us. It will be interesting to see what portion these folks decide to pay for membership.
Having been in this exact situation a few years ago, I really hope they can make it work. I’d still love these membership models to take hold in a much bigger way than they have in the past.