- by Rory Ramsden
Before we look at the quick way to build your hot new digital product, let’s just examine why you should and how it will enhance your position as the authority figure in your niche.
You see posting valuable content to your blog will only take you so far. It is after all only one way to show that you know your stuff. Bundling your knowledge and expertise into a digital product can be an end in itself but if you are in a service based business or have a bricks and mortar store on main street, it will add value to an existing product or service without costing you a ton of money.
In fact, it will allow you to maintain your margins or even boost your ROI as well as set you apart from your competition. Once created, it will cost you almost nothing to ‘stock’. It can be delivered on autopilot. And it makes sacquiring new customers a profit centre rather than the reverse
Building a strong set of digital products, allows you cross promote one product launch after another and free you up to build your business in other ways.
So what form could your product take…? Here’s a short list
- Software, Templates and Files
- Consultations and Coaching
- The Fish Sandwich
Whilst you may choose one form in which to deliver your core product, you should consider how to boost the perceived value of your offer by slicing and dicing it in as many ways as you possibly can so that your target audience can consume it in the way that is most convenient to them.
Let’s look at that list in more detail…
I’ve put this at the top of the list for a reason. Once you have a good audio track recorded, a few options open up for you. You can make it into an MP3. Then upload that as a podcast. Next up you can make a simple screen capture video and finally you can get it transcribed, edited and converted into a PDF.
Audio products are quick to make and easy to digest on the move or at the gym.
Using simple postcards, write the headline of each section on one side and the sub-heads on the other. Then simply do a brain dump of your expertise on each subject heading in turn as separate recordings.
I highly recommended that you include audio in your product because people who aren’t interested in long PDFs will be more open to buying the product. I know I’ve had times where I’ve thought “I have no time to read all this and less inclination, but since there are MP3 downloads of this product I can listen to it in the car so I’ll buy it.”
All you need is an inexpensive USB headset (those headphones with the built-in microphones) to get started. There’s even free audio editing software available.
If you think that you have the perfect face for radio, no problem. If you have no video equipment and no video editing experience, don’t worry. You don’t have to show your face. You don’t have to buy any expensive video cameras or other equipment. You don’t even have to be a whizz at editing videos either.
Screen capture videos are simple and easy to make using Powerpoint or Keynote for Macs combined with Camtasia or Screenflow. To put it mildly, I am technically challenged and yet I can make these simple videos… Here’s one I made earlier about Our Free Product Launch Evaluation Service.
Video also sends a message that you’re ahead of the game, because most people don’t use video for their training products – more fool them as video boosts the perceived value of your offer – You can use that to your advantage when it comes to pricing and positioning.
One other quick and easy way to produce a video is simply to do a screencast where you capture what’s happening on your screen. They are great for creating tutorials or demonstrations. Combine a screencast with a voice-over and you’ve got an easy to create product in no time.
Transcribing your audio tracks into PDFs is probably the quickest way to get your thoughts on paper. Record your thoughts in the car or taking the dog for a walk or even in the office and then hand off the transcription work to a professional.
If you insist you can tap it all out on your computer yourself but make sure that before you start you have used the ‘postcard method’ as recommended for audio recording s to get your structure worked out. This will save a lot of editing later and keep you focused on your goals.
The trouble is that they do have a high perceived value even if you load them onto the Kindle library on Amazon.com, you are only making dimes on the dollar compared to a video product.
There are also services that will take your PDFs and turn them into physical, printed versions – like a bound report or even a finished paperback book – and we’ll go into those later. This is a great way to convert your information product to physical form and charge a premium for it.
SOFTWARE, TEMPLATES AND FILES
One way of making life easier for your customers and adding value to you core products is to include exclusive access to proprietary software, templates or packs of graphics
Here are some examples:
• Software – This could be a blog plugin or some handy snippets of code (PHP scripts, Photoshop Actions, etc.), and could be bundled into your offer to add even more value and make your core product easier to use
• Templates – Custom Blog themes, squeeze pages, sales pages, presentation templates can all be bundled into your offer to add value and make buying your product over that of a competitors an obvious choice.
• Files – Stock audio/video files to boost the impact of presentations or perhaps web-ready icons and you can sell to designers. If you can create a library of small, reusable files, that’s a sellable item.
Let’s say you offer a website design service including all the associated graphics. Put together a bundle of associated services that will set your offer apart and make not buying your offer very hard. You could offer a range of customizable themes focused on the needs of your core audience and integrate the finished site with an autor- responder plus install a must-have basket of widgets and plug-ins.
Here’s another example – A graphic designer could offer an Ebook Package including simple cover design, the same design in various 3D forms, banner advertisement in 3 sizes/shapes, 1 sales page header graphic and 1 custom “buy now” button for say $350.
The trick is to put yourself in your customer’s shoes and help them promote their ebook by providing all the graphic elements they need in addition to the original artwork they are looking for.
CONSULTATIONS AND COACHING
Continuing with the website designer example, you could offer a free website critique or audit to help your customer get the best results possible as well as helping you define your new design brief as tightly as possible. This has two distinct benefits. Your client gets a new website that will boost his conversions to the max. And you know that you’re not wasting your time on speculative designs.
Your Website Design Critique could be defined as a detailed, 20-point evaluation of your website and guidance on what specific steps you need to take to create a more attractive, marketable design that will turn prospects into customers more quickly and easily.
That’s another solid product. You’re not selling website design at all. You have turned yourself into a consultant who is an expert in creating ‘websites that sell’. You have a distinct and tightly focused offer that gives real value and boosts your ROI in the process. If you don’t “productize” your services like this, you’re leaving a lot of money on the table.
THE FISH SANDWICH
In every market there is a group who can afford to pay top dollar. They are not interested in buying a home study course and learning how to edit video for example. They just want to get their problem solved and they are prepared to pay for it.
These are the guys who want you to do the job for them.
They don’t want to go out and catch a fish, prepare it, cook it before they can enjoy the fruits of their labors. They just want a fish sandwich and a nice cold beer and they want it now. Your job is to put together an offer to attract these clients. These are the 20% who will provide 80% of your revenue.
Many people would like to get into digital product creation but assume there are many barriers. Well, there aren’t. I have given you 7 ways to create a hot digital product. There are more…
- Webinar Series Recording
- Membership Site
- Home Study Course
- Inbox magazine
Now you have your product, you are ready for your first product launch. This is a systematic repeatable process that will engage your target audience to the max. It’s not some tacky high pressure selling strategy. In fact, it’s quite the reverse.
A product launch focuses on helping your audience move towards their goal long before you even mention the idea to them that they could buy your stuff. Encouraging them to take action and prove to themselves that your system works leaves you with the simple job of explaining every aspect of your offer and how to pay for it.
Your prospects are fully prepared and ready for your offer. In fact, if you don’t tell them what it is in a straight forward simple way, they will be mightily disappointed.
Now you may be wondering how you are going to manage your launch and keep tabs with all the other important day-to-day tasks that your business demands of you.
Worry not, hiring a product launch manager will not cost as much as you might expect. Our aim is to structure a win-win sort of a deal with clients. We get paid when you get paid. That is we work on a percentage of the ‘pre-return’s gross’ revenue that your product launch makes. Naturally, you have to pay a fee to get on our calendar. We can only take on 2 or 3 clients per year so our time is valuable and we must know what our schedule is well in advance. It would be unfair on our other clients if we didn’t insist on this. Find out more by booking a free consultation with me now