Launching a product is something that can help your business in ways you might not expect.
Having a product in your portfolio demonstrates that you are an expert in your field while also giving you a way to scale your business. We all only have so much time and creating a product that you can sell to as many people as you desire would change your mind about what is possible for your business.
Creating a product lets people make small investments to “test the waters” before they hire you, which gives you a chance to wow them so they invest in your premium offers.
It would also expand your business in terms of the people you can help. Some people can’t fully commit to hiring you, but buying one of your products to solve one of their problems would be a great investment for them. Think of how many books you have bought just within this last year without actually hiring the person who wrote the book. You could give that same idea to your clients!
Creating a product could be as easy as a simple workbook to follow up with after you give a live talk, or you could make it as big as a whole college course. You might even decide to create different products that all build on each other.
There are a lot of decisions to make about creating a product that are the behind the scenes type of work. I have created many products and here are some of the steps I walk through to build a product:
1. Write down what kind of things your clients always ask you about.
Most of us business owners get certain questions over and over. This is a great opportunity to create a product to answer those questions. Some of the questions I get often are, “How do I find clarity?” “How do I scale my business?” “How do I make enough money with my business to be able to eat?” All of these questions fueled my product creations.
2. Research your industry and other people who do similar things to you.
You know I believe authenticity has no competition, so there is no reason to be upset or jealous as you search around the web and see what other products people in your industry have created. No one has the same perceptions, life experiences, and level of expertise that you do.
Search books, courses, DVDs, workshops, e-books, e-courses, or anything you can find. It may give you great ideas and insights into what has already done really well and what is possible for you to create.
3. Finding the gaps.
This is where the magic happens: Now you are going to list where there are gaps between the needs of people and what your industry provides.
If you read the reviews of other products in your industry, you might be able to easily spot gaps you can fill.
One thing I have heard from my clients who had hired other business coaches is that they never provided the actual blueprint to follow. They provided them with a bunch of great “in the clouds” ideas but left them wondering, “Wait, what am I supposed to actually DO now?” Or they would give them a path that is exactly the one that the business coach followed and not what the client found meaningful. I wanted to provide not only action steps, but action steps aligned to my clients’ true inner calling.
Talk to your clients and ask them if they have ever bought any products. Ask them what was missing and what results didn’t they see that they wished they had? Asking these questions can be eye opening.
Also take notes of any idea your clients give you. Maybe you will hear, “I wish you had a DVD I could buy,” or “I am filling up endless pages with ideas every time I hear you speak! I wish I could just buy all of this in a book so I don’t miss anything!” A good rule of thumb is if you hear something once it could just be a nice compliment, if you hear it twice it could be a fluke, but if you hear it three times, get to creating, girl!
4. Don’t be afraid to create a free course.
Some teachers suggest that you “give away your best content for free” in the hopes that you will attract a client who will say “Wow! If she gave this away for free, I’m definitely investing in her paid offers.” My experience is that those people come few and far between. The information junkies however, come in droves. To counter this, let’s find a healthy balance between fee-based and free content. A couple of years ago, I created Monetize: $30K in 30 days as a container for giving without the pressures of perfectionism, over-giving, over-sharing and/or overwhelm. It helped me to understand what my clients were truly looking for and how to best be of service to them.
5. What serves you and your business?
The final step is putting all of the pieces together and asking yourself what would serve you and your purpose? What do you feel drawn toward or what questions do you feel the most excited about answering?
Creating a product you don’t want to create does nothing for you and your business because you won’t feel excited enough to promote it, but creating a product you feel called to do can reignite your passion for your business while also putting those extra dollars in your account so you can go get that new pair of shoes you deserve.
What needs could you fill within your industry? Leave your comments below!