Yesterday, I made the decision to discontinue offering Venture Event Manager as a standalone plugin in the WordPress plugin repository. Not to be confused with the Venture Platform, the managed website development solution for Arts & Culture organizations, these are just the stand-alone WordPress plugins.
While the plugin had good traction and the paid upgrade to the Pro version was clearing a profit, it wasn’t a good enough risk-reward reward given the direction WordPress development is headed.
But perhaps more importantly, I’ve been diverting considerably more resources toward UpStageCRM and when sitting down with my senior developers for a quarterly strategic planning meeting, it made more sense to redirect resources needed to keep that business model running toward more, and better, updates to the core product which is still the cornerstone of the full Venture Platform service.
That means the event manager is still available, but only for full Venture Platform users.
One of the larger questions that needed an answer was how to handle existing Pro users who license use of the plugin annually. I had to either cut them off after their next renewal or find a way for them to continue.
The former option wasn’t very palpable even though it’s quite common throughout the premium WordPress plugin sector. It’s hard to beat an empathetic approach and I imagined how I would react in their position. As a result, we did come up with a way to allow those Pro users to continue renewing their annual license for as long as they like, regardless if they become a Venture Platform user or not (but rest assured, they’ll certainly get an incentive if they do).
All of this made me think about how many arts and culture orgs keep programs, memberships, and subscriptions around longer than they should. When was the last time you reviewed your programs to see if shutting something down might be the best solution?