Case studies

From hard-to-use PDF meal plans to your own interactive app (and what not to do)

Lucy had worked tirelessly to build an online following and meal plan membership program that allowed her to quit her day job – but when we first spoke, she was clearly distressed.

People were starting to complain and even leave her program, putting everything she'd worked for in jeopardy.

Members were growing tired of having to manually update their PDF-based meal plans and grocery lists, and the inability to find old recipes.

They said things like:

"I want to be able to swap recipes... and adjust servings.”
“[And] update my grocery list automatically. It’s a real pain doing it manually.”
"It’s hard finding old recipes... I spend ages looking in the PDFs.”

Lucy needed a new solution to keep growing, plus some of her competitors were getting ahead with their own “digital” programs.

Fast forward to present day and these problems are a thing of the past.

Lucy now has an interactive meal planning app, and has grown her membership to over 1500 people.

Here’s how she did it, warts and all.

Attempt #1 (this didn’t end well)

After exhausting Google for white-label software (this is before Member Kitchens existed), Lucy reluctantly hired a freelance developer to build a custom app.

Things started well but as the project progressed, the software got buggier and buggier, and the functionality stopped resembling what Lucy had in her mind.

Then the developer started ghosting Lucy.

After several failed attempts to reconnect, Lucy decided it wasn’t worth pursuing further, not least because the app wasn’t in good shape.

Thousands of dollars and countless hours down the drain, and it was back to the drawing board… sigh!

Attempt #2 (a near miss)

By this point, Lucy was growing desperate.

So, when a company offered to build a solution for $10,000, and charge hundreds per month to maintain it, it didn't seem like an unreasonable offer.

But as fate would have it, we contacted Lucy literally the day before she was due to sign the contract (this really happened).

We chatted over email and then a video call, and the rest is history.

Finally, a meal planning app without the hassle

With Member Kitchens, Lucy was able to get a custom-branded app up and running within a matter of days.

She had already done the hard part by creating a membership program with paying members, a ton of recipes, and a marketing website.

All we had to do was connect her new meal planning app to her existing set up, add logos and branding, and import recipes.

This is how it looked.

Lucy’s existing set up:

  • Website and blog built on Wordpress.
  • Subscriptions and payments managed with MemberPress, a WordPress plugin.
  • Private community hosted in Facebook.
  • Email marketing with MailChimp.
  • Traffic primarily from social media (Instagram, Facebook, TikTok).
  • PDF-based meal planning with That Clean Life.

We added / swapped:

  • Interactive recipes and meal planning with Member Kitchens (and removed That Clean Life).
  • A Zapier integration, to connect everything together.

The big reveal!

Once everything was ready, Lucy broke the news to her email list, social followers and paying members, and they are loving it:

“Thanks for always kicking ass!!”
"This is really neat… when I normally go on to a meal plan, it’s always set for four people or one, and it’s never enough."
"The most useful part was being able to change the amount of servings. I used to estimate in my head, this is so much easier."

Take Member Kitchens for a spin?

You can try Member Kitchens for free or contact us to get answers to your questions, and find out how you can start and grow your own meal planning subscription.

This case study is based on two people's experiences, and their names have been changed. The events and quotes are real.