Having a digital product that sells well and makes you money is about more than creating a rocking information product. Yes, you need a good product on a topic that your audience is interested in, but that’s just the starting point.
No one will buy a said product when it’s finished unless you can launch and market it.
All too often I see people create information products, put them up for sale, and then sit back and wait for sales to come in. Sadly, that’s not the case. You have to properly launch and market your product to give it a chance of becoming a best seller.
In fact, only 20% of your overall time and efforts should be dedicated to product creation. The remaining 80% is all about marketing and promotion. In other words, you have to launch your product, so people start to notice and buy.
Start by creating some buzz while you’re working on putting the digital product itself together. Let your audience know what you’re working on and what it can do for them.
Get people interested, get them curious, and encourage them to let other people know what you’re doing and what’s coming.
Next, comes the big launch itself. As soon as you have your product up for sale and you’ve tested the sales process to make sure everything is working the way it’s supposed to, it’s time to let the world know about it. In this context, the “world” is your potential target audience.
Email your list about the offer. Don’t stop at just one email. Craft an entire series of emails for the coming weeks. Post about it on social media. Link to it from related content on your blog. Write a few new posts that highlight some of the benefits of your product, or point out the problems it solves.
Go out there and reach as many people as possible about what you have to offer, starting with your own sphere of influence.
While the big launch will get you quite a few sales, in the beginning, your work isn’t quite done yet. Going forward you want to continue to promote and market your product. Email your list about it regularly.
Link to it from new blog posts that you write where it fits. If you have an affiliate program in place, remind affiliates to continue to recommend the product to their audience. As you come out with other products or even lead magnets, recommend the original product within the content and on the download page.
In other words, keep spreading the word about what you’ve created, and you will continue making sales for months and years to come.
Defining The Target Audience For Your Info Product
You’re thinking of creating a digital information product. Great idea, but before you sit down to work on content creation, it’s important to define your target audience and do what you can to make sure you’ll come up with something they want and need.
You don’t want to put weeks of hard work into creating an info product that no one wants to buy.
Your product creation process then begins with your target market. You don’t even need to think about what type of product in what format and on what topic you may want to create. Your first job is to become very clear on who your target market is, what it’s comprised of, and what motivates the people that make up the said market.
Because at the end of the day you’re dealing with real people who have to like and trust you to open their wallets for what you have to offer them.
A good starting place is to define your particular niche. You’re not just in the online marketing, weight loss, finance, or personal fitness niche.
You have to be more specific. Better examples would be Facebook marketing for local businesses, low carb diets for post-menopausal women, getting out of debt with personal budgets, or personal fitness for pregnant women.
You don’t need or want to be everything for everyone. You’ll do much better by offering specific advice to a particular target market. It will make your life much easier going forward because you’ll know exactly who these people are and what they are looking for.
Your next step is to define your target market and the people it’s made up of. Who are they? What’s their gender, age, income? Where do they live, what do they do for work and fun? Where do they hang out online? What’s their most urgent problem and how can you help them solve it?
These are all good questions to ask. Spend some time to dig deep and learn as much as you can about your future customers. It’s some of the best time you’ll spend when it comes to growing your business and creating profitable information products.
Last but not least, create an avatar or an image of your ideal customer. Be as detailed as possible. Create a vivid picture of this person. Give him or her a backstory and flesh out this imaginary character that represents the people in your target audience.
With that firmly in place, you’re ready to create your first info product. Create it for your avatar. Write or speak directly to this person both in the content that makes up your product and the marketing materials.
Do that, and you’ll significantly improve the chances of creating a digital information product that sells well and for months and years to come.
What Are Digital Products
If you have an online business, a website, or a blog, you’ve probably heard of digital products. Chances are that you’ve consumed quite a few of them already and you may even be thinking about adding them as a new revenue stream to your business.
Before you can start to think about creating digital products, it’s important that you understand what exactly they are.
Digital products are information products that can be downloaded online. This could be an eBook, a video course, a webinar, an audio recording, or even a handful of printable checklists or a workbook.
Digital products come in a variety of different formats from pdfs to mp3s. What product format you choose depends on what you’re comfortable creating, what works well to convey the information you’re sharing, what you’re teaching, and of course what your target audience prefers.
Before you consider what you may want to create, browse around and see what type of digital products are available in your niche. Buy a few and review them.
Take note of the kind of information covered, how the material is organized and shared, what the product looks like, how it is delivered etc. Take note of price points too. All this research will come in handy when you are ready to develop your own digital products.
Another interesting aspect of digital products is that it’s easy to set up an affiliate program and pay a high commission on it. While the affiliate commission on physical products is often 10% or less than the purchase price, with digital products, commissions of 50% or higher are the norm. This is important for two reasons.
First and foremost, this makes it easy and profitable for you to sell digital products to your visitors and subscribers. It’s a nice way to test the water, see how digital products are received, and create a passive stream of income at the same time.
Secondly, setting up an affiliate program of your own is a great marketing strategy to help you make more sales of your digital products and grow your reach once you create them. Since there is not a lot of cost and overhead involved in digital products and it usually costs no more to sell one than to sell two hundred (aside from fees like those paid to PayPal for example), it’s possible to pay high commissions and still make a profit for yourself.
Why You Should Be Selling Digital Products
There are a lot of good reasons to get into the business of selling digital products. Today we’re going to look at the benefits of selling them both as an affiliate and as an information product creator.
Use it as motivation to get started selling digital products in your niche.
First and foremost, you should be selling digital products because that’s what your market expects. We live in the information age and have knowledge available at the press of a button. We want to be able to buy something and instantly access it.
Instead of ordering a physical book or DVD and waiting for it to arrive in the mail, we expect to be able to buy it, download it to our favorite digital device, and start consuming it right away.
From a seller’s point of view, digital products are a safe bet because there aren’t a lot of costs involved in developing the product. Your main investment will be the time it takes you to create a digital product.
Start small, test the waters by selling info-products as an affiliate, and get your feet wet. You can type up a short report in a few days, turn it into a pdf, and have it up for sale on your website without spending any money.
Of course, you have the option of hiring a writer, editor, graphic designer, etc., but it’s not necessary. It’s easy to create your first few digital products on a budget and outsource once you become profitable.
Another big reason why you should be creating your own digital products is that it’s a passive stream of income. You do the work of setting up the product once and then have something to sell going forward without any or much additional work.
You can focus on marketing or create the next product while this one continues to sell for months and years to come. Last but not least, you should consider creating digital products because it’s one of the most profitable ways to monetize your online business.
Your target audience wants to learn, wants to solve problems, and wants to be entertained. You spend a lot of time engaging them, getting them to read your blog, sign up for your newsletter or emails, and gaining their trust.
They are ready for more and happy to pay you for your time and efforts. Start creating a few different digital products and see for yourself just how profitable this business model can be.
Are you struggling to find time to handle your internet marketing? This is a common problem and one that a lot of people struggle with and unfortunately, there is really no ‘shortcut’ to being successful in this regard.
Sure, there are certain strategies you can follow to save time and get things done quicker, but there is no ‘silver bullet’ to guarantee you success. Success will always equal work – and frankly, that is as it should be.
The only thing you can do then is to ensure that you are as focused and productive as possible when you do set out to work. This means avoiding distractions and it means being able to stay in ‘flow’ for as long as possible.
How do you do that? Here are some ‘hacks’ that will help…
Put Music on Loop
Find an album you like that doesn’t have lyrics (so it won’t distract you) and then listen to it on loop. Why? Because of the fact that you keep listening to it, means that your brain will eventually become desensitized and thus start to ‘tune it out’. This works similarly to when your brain stops listening to the ticking of a clock. And by doing that, you can effectively simulate a kind of ‘sensory deprivation’ for your hearing which will keep you more focussed on what you’re doing and less distracted by outside sounds. Apparently, this is a trick that Matt Mullenweg of WordPress fame uses!
An alternative is to listen to white noise. Or for something a little more pleasant, try the website ‘rainy moods’ or ‘coffitivity’. Both of these create non-distracting ambient sounds that have been shown to boost productivity!
Have a Hot Mocha
Recent research shows that having a mocha first thing in the morning is actually more effective at boosting productivity than having a coffee alone. This is because the drink provides an ideal combination of caffeine and cocoa. Caffeine is a stimulant and will elevate the heart rate and increase focus while waking you up. Unfortunately, this can also have the unwanted effect of making you wired and potentially making you feel stressed.
Mocha counteracts this issue because the release of serotonin from the chocolate can ‘take the edge off’. What’s more, is that cocoa contains epicatechin which drives more oxygen to the brain via vasodilation and thereby actually boosts cognition even further!
A similar alternative that is also recommended by productivity gurus is caffeine + l-theanine and you can get this combination by drinking yerba mate green tea.
Leave Something Unfinished
Want to have a more productive day tomorrow and get started with your work right away? Then consider leaving something unfinished until tomorrow.
This might sound counterintuitive, but it’s a great way to ensure you start working quickly when the day begins. The reason for this is that the human brain hates unfinished business. Thus, if a task is left incomplete, then it is human nature to want to try and complete that task right away. This means that you can skip the usual procrastination and dive straight into your work head first!
For many, the idea of earning a living online is what they would consider being ‘the dream’. If you can earn all your income online, then you can work from any environment that you find comfortable, you can stop taking long commutes into work and you can choose your own working hours. Working online gives you total freedom and flexibility and at the same time, allows you to scale your business to any extent you like.
But the problem is making the leap and transitioning to making money purely online. Most of us will need to spend our days doing our regular 9-5 job, which means we only have a couple of hours in the evening in which to work on our own projects.
What’s more is that many businesses require some kind of financial investment – an investment that many of us won’t be able to afford – and they require a basic understanding of the web.
So, the question is: how does a busy business person transition to a point where they can make a full-time living online?
The key is to set out not to quit your day job and start living the internet marketing dream, but instead simply to make a little extra side income. In other words, keep your objectives modest to begin with and that way you can then scale up gradually in order to reach the point where you’re able to give up your day job.
You may not have time in the evenings to create a full-scale business, but you probably do have time to make a few blog posts or to sell a few items of stock. If your keep your business small, then you only need a few hours.
Likewise, you can avoid needing a big investment this way. For example, if you are reselling a product, then you’ll only need to invest in a small amount of inventory to begin with (maybe $100 worth) because you wouldn’t have time to sell more anyway. Then if those items sell successfully, you simply reinvest the profit back into a bigger order of stock.
Beginning the Transition
This also means that there is no reason to take a big plunge and quit your day job. There’s no reason to risk losing your income and having nothing to replace it because you’re just doing this as a hobby in the evenings. But trust me – earning an extra $30 a week even can make quite a big difference to your lifestyle and is incredibly rewarding.
Then, if things seem to be going well, you could consider working one day of the weekend. Or perhaps you could negotiate working a 4 day week. Maybe consider leaving your job and taking part-time work too.
Only as the business starts to grow do you need to consider working less for your current job and that way you can make the transition seamlessly and without needing to take any big, reckless risk!
Procrastination is something that can ruin your day, damage your career and negatively impact on your relationships.
Often, we laugh about procrastination as though it were an amusing habit and sometimes it can be. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t also incredibly destructive. Imagine it’s 4pm and you have work you desperately need to finish by 5pm but you can’t stop browsing Facebook or making trips to the kitchen for cups of coffee.
What happens? One option is that you end up going home very late and lose out on time with your family. Another option is that you end up not finishing the work and starting the next day incredibly behind.
Either way, this is a serious problem.
So, what can you do about it? Here are a few tricks that can help.
Start the Most Enjoyable Task First
One effective way to reduce your proneness to procrastination is to take on the easiest/most enjoyable task first. Our natural inclination is very often to handle the most difficult task first and to that way get it out of the way.
But if you’re struggling with motivation, then this is going to be a big up-hill struggle to get yourself to commit.
Instead, if the first task is something easier and more fun, then you’ll find you can work more easily without being distracted. And once you’ve done that, you should be in a slightly more work-oriented frame of mind.
Make it More Interesting
Procrastination often comes from one simple fact: the job you should be doing is boring. Hence you would rather be doing something else.
One simple solution is to make said task more enjoyable or interesting. This might mean turning letter stuffing into a game. Or it might mean providing yourself with a little stimulation: I will often write articles while watching videos on silent just to ensure that I have a bit of stimulation.
If you’re writing, then try to make the topic more interesting so that you’ll be less likely to be bored. If you’re bored writing it, then it’s probably not going to be great to read!
Finally, note that we are much more prone to procrastination when we’re tired. Why? Because will-power requires energy.
When you take that energy away, it becomes much easier to be distracted or interested with other things. Give yourself more energy by sleeping better, by eating supplements that boost energy levels and by avoiding stressful events wherever possible.
If you want to upgrade your brain like Eddie Mora from Limitless, then unfortunately you won’t find it to be as easy as taking a single pill. Instead, you’re going to have to look at more arduous and lengthy strategies, including such things as brain training or improving your overall health.
If you choose to go the brain-training route though, there is one especially effective and ‘easy’ method that you may find helps you to see the kinds of results you’re looking for. That method is to focus your training on working memory. But what does that actually mean?
What is Working Memory?
The traditional view of memory split out capacity for storing information into three separate categories. Those were: working memory, short-term memory and long-term memory.
Short-term memory was described as containing all the information that you remember for a while, but that would ultimately be ‘sent to trash’. This includes such things as people’s names, or what you had for breakfast. Long-term memory meanwhile includes all that information that you will remember indefinitely: the names of your friends, the night you proposed, how to tell the time etc.
Working memory, based on this description, was effectively your brain’s equivalent of RAM. This is where information would be stored that would only be required for a very short amount of time. The most popular example is a phone number that you are going to write down.
In turn, the working memory – based on the traditional view – could be broken down into a ‘visuo-spatial scratchpad’ where we would visualize things and a ‘phonological loop’ where we would repeat things to ourselves in a bid to not forget them.
Today though, psychologists are recognizing that working memory has much more in-common with visualization in general. This is our ability to internalize information, whether that’s memory, imagination or something else.
In short, this is our ability to create a representation of the world whether for predictive purposes or something else. In conversation, this means keeping track of what’s been said and what’s next. In sports, it means knowing where everyone is on the pitch. When working, it’s what allows us to multitask and switch between different things. This is nothing short of crucial for your ability to work quickly and effectively.
How to Train It
The good news is that there is a proven method for increasing working memory and that is to train using something called the N Back test. Use this and you can gradually improve your ability to hold information in your mind with incredible results.
When you are trying to build a successful social media page that will help to sell your products and build you a big following, what’s important is to try and ‘sell the dream’.
So what does that mean? It means focusing on you value proposition.
A value proposition meanwhile is the way in which your product or your service can change people’s lives for the better. What is it that people should get from your product if all goes well? The old saying goes that you don’t sell hats, you sell warm heads!
This is to say that people don’t buy hats because they want to wrap fabric around their heads – they buy them for an end goal that will make life a little more comfortable. Your product and your service are more than the sum of their parts.
The Emotional Hook
This is even more important when what you’re selling has an ‘emotional hook’. The ideal example here is the ‘Make Money Ebook’. This is just a PDF with lots of words, which in itself doesn’t offer that much value.
So the value proposition is tied to what those words can do for the person. And of course this means that you’re going to help your readers to become richer.
More than that, you’re going to help them end the stress of debt and you’re going to help them to be more attractive to the opposite sex. They can go on lots of holidays and buy nice watches that make them feel more confident!
That’s the emotional hook and if you were trying to sell the product on a sales page, that’s what you’d focus on.
In social media, you don’t want to be so ‘on the nose’. Instead, your objective will be to focus on the lifestyle that is associated with the product you’re selling and to promote this through your channel.
How to Sell the Lifestyle
So how might you do this? A quick look on Instagram will quickly show you how people are selling fitness products and clothing: they do it by creating a lifestyle and sharing images and videos of themselves working out, or just looking generally attractive in their clothes.
And this helps to gain them followers who want that lifestyle and who want to live vicariously. And it also generates a lot of sales – more effectively than any on-the-nose marketing attempt!
In neuroscience, the concept of ‘flow’ is currently all the rage.
Flow describes a specific mental state that allows us to focus intensely on a single task or subject matter. In this state, time will actually appear to dilate and slow around us, giving us more time to react and improving our performance significantly. At the same time, we become faster at solving problems and reacting and we can completely block out all distracting thoughts and temptations.
So, what is this ‘flow’ exactly and how does it come about?
Flow is a certain mental state in much the same way that the ‘fight or flight’ puts us into a particular state of mind. In fact, a flow state is very similar to the fight or flight response with the primary difference being that fight or flight makes us more panicked and distracted whereas flow is slightly calmer and more positive.
Both states though are triggered by a sense of danger and importance. When the body detects that it is in danger, or working toward a highly important goal, then it will produce chemicals such as dopamine, norepinephrine and cortisol. These increase the heart rate, contract the muscles and generally make us more highly alert and ready for action.
The difference is that a flow state also produces serotonin (the feel good hormone) and anandamide (the ‘bliss’ hormone). This makes the sensation far more euphoric and also makes us more creatively inclined. In other words: this is danger/importance with enjoyment and excitement.
Common ‘triggers’ of flow states include surfing, snow boarding and sports. This is any moment when you have lost track of time and what you are and instead begun to move purely through space without distraction.
This can also happen when you’re performing in a band and you become ‘one with the music’. Or when you’re engaged in fascinating discussion and you lose all track of time.
How to Access Flow
So how do you access this incredible mental state and find your flow? The answer is that it requires you to focus 100% on what you’re doing by building up its importance in your mind. Using meditation can help you to generally improve your focus, while practicing CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) can teach you to change the way you feel about different activities.
Ultimately though, you have to remind yourself why what you’re doing is important and to fully engage in that moment. Only then can you tap into your flow!