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Creating your own information product can be scary, but having one is rewarding and great for many reasons! One of the best parts of having your own info product is that it’s great for passive income. You can also use affiliates to reach a much wider market and gain more sales. Once created, it continues to bring in money even when you’re sleeping! It also gives you credibility and helps position you as an expert in your niche. Who wouldn’t want all of that?
Many online marketers flock to monetizing their blog when they want to make money. That route can definitely work, but sometimes it can take a while. Whereas creating an info product can be done in as little as a day.
Have you been wondering how to create your own info product that magnetizes those dollars? This post is intended to show you how, step-by-step, beginning to end.
What is an info product?
In basic terms, it is simply a product that teaches people knowledge and information you wish to share. Much of the time it is a product that deals with “How To” information. It can be created in a variety of formats.
This article is also an info product. (But this one is FREE!)
Apart from an article, there can be many other formats for creating an info product. Here are some examples:
- Audio series
- eBooks (most popular)
- Hardcopy books
- Membership sites
- Newsletters (7-day series, 10-day series, etc.)
- Video series
I imagine you have already started coming up with some ideas about what to do with some of the info product types.
First Step: Who You Are Creating An Info Product For (Be Specific)
It’s surprising the huge number of people who take this as their last step rather than their first step. Working backwards on this will result in less value being placed on your product as your audience would have to deliberate on whether or not the product is useful to them. Trust me, that is not a good first impression.
Moreover, having a specific audience means you know the exact people to market your info product to, as well as it helping you present yourself as an authority in that niche. Specifying your audience also helps you niche down, which is a way to increase the value for your product.
Let’s say you’re in the fitness niche. Creating a product called “Lose excess weight in less than a week” is just too general. Elderly visitors in your audience may feel that the contents are too difficult for them to try. A pregnant woman or new mother may feel the content would be too dangerous to try. On the other hand, a product called “Weight Loss for Pregnant Women and New Mothers” or “Weight Loss for the Elderly” is more specific.
The more specific, the better. Remember, it is not about what YOU want, but is instead about what YOUR AUDIENCE wants.
Related: 9 Ways To Treat Your Blog Like A Business
Second Step: Choose A Topic For Your Info Product
Now is the time to brainstorm. After getting specific on who you want to create an info product for, it’s time to choose a topic that appeals to that specific audience. It needs to be something they would be willing to hand over their hard-earned money for, while also meeting a pressing need they have.
It’s time to do some mindreading to find out what your chosen audience needs. Well, since we have yet to invent a device that reads minds, your best bet at this stage is conducting a survey.
While it may seem right to do so, do not just start asking questions like, “Hey there! Tell me what you need.” The reason is most people generally don’t know, or there may be simply too many choices to consider. Perhaps you have heard the expression, “You don’t know what you don’t know.”
What’s easier though is knowing what we do not want or what we see as a challenge. For example, instead of asking “What do you need to know about weight loss?” you could ask “What are your challenges to keeping fit?”
Chances are high you would see a particular response showing up again and again. THAT is your TOPIC for creating your info product. It is better if you can find a topic that addresses all of the responses your survey brought up, just as long as they are related to your niche.
It is more helpful if you are already an expert in this area. If not, just pick an idea or two from the responses that corresponds to your knowledge, skills and passion.
What if you have no audience to survey?
We will soon get to the list building step. Although that is in the fifth step, I recommend you start building your list of subscribers immediately once you decide you want to create an info product. It takes as few as 100 subscribers and you’re good to go.
However, there are other options through which you can carry out your survey if you have no email list audience yet. Here are some recommendations.
1. Ask your survey in Facebook Groups. It should be no surprise that this is my first alternative to a survey using email. Why? You are very likely part of a Facebook group that relates to your niche, whether it be one you created or one you joined. One you joined may not be as solid as your own group or subscriber list, but you will still be able to get some great ideas from the responses. Be careful when asking your survey questions to ensure you do not go against the group’s rules.
2. Observe Facebook groups. Sometimes we get more insight by just observing. Are newcomers to a particular Facebook group always asking the same question or several questions? Now is your chance to answer those questions! As other members of the group notice your expertise and resourcefulness, they will be more interested in purchasing from you should you offer a product later. (Again, be respectful of group rules.)
3. Observe on Twitter. This is the mother of trends and hashtags. Twitter makes it easy to find and follow relevant popular discussions. Simply search for your desired topic. To get noticed, find questions there and supply answers.
4. Collaborate with another person in your niche. One option to save time (from list building) is to have someone else in your niche survey their audience. Ideally they should already have a very large following. This may be a bit harder to do if you’re not very established, but it’s certainly worth trying. Be open to paying for the help, perhaps bartering, or purchasing something from them in exchange. This would give you access to a huge response.
5. Use a survey site. If there are options to place your survey in front of a very large audience not solely your niche, simply include qualifying questions. Once you have results, focus on answers only from those with the right answers to your qualifiers. For example, women aged 30 to 50 are your niche but the survey audience is men and women over 18. Qualifying questions related to their age and their sex. Discard all answers not from women aged 30 to 50.
Third Step: Choose A Format for Your Info Product
We’re halfway to your info product creation!
This step is where we choose the format for creating your info product. It is certainly possible to create it in more than one format. If fact, given that people learn in different ways, sometimes it is highly recommended. For example, a webinar could be available in both a video and audio version. You could also offer a written transcript, or offer it as an upgrade. You could turn a series of webinars into an ecourse.
Let’s go back to our earlier example. Think of the best way to package an info product named “Weight Loss for pregnant women and new mothers.” An ebook with supporting videos could be a good way to go.
Choosing the format depends on several factors, such as your audience and the topic you’re covering. Below are some questions to aid you while deciding.
1. Price Range. What price range would your audience be comfortable with? If you’re creating an info product on how CEOs can use LinkedIn to boost business, you can charge premium prices and create multi-media formats. If you’re creating an info product for new college graduates on how to secure a job within three months of graduation, less expensive formats like an ebook or monthly subscription will work better.
2. Format for your audience. What format will be easiest for your audience to consume the information you are giving? Creating an info product to teach how to design an ebook may be better packaged as an ecourse, webinar or a video. Unless you are able to add a lot of visual examples, while perhaps still thorough, one ebook may offer a less satisfying experience.
3. Format for you. What format do you prefer for creation? Unless you’ve hired someone to do it for you, maximizing your strengths is usually best. Are you better at speaking than writing? Then by all means, package your info product as a video or audio rather than an ebook. Remember that you audience’s satisfaction comes first. And these days it’s easy to convert info from one format into another. For example, a webinar can easily be turned into an audio, video or ecourse. And if you also offer a transcript, it can be transformed into an ebook.
Fourth Step: Draw Up An Info Product Creation Plan
As the saying goes, When you fail to plan, you plan to fail. This is especially true for something like creating an info product. Having a plan is essential. When dealing with information it can be easy to lose direction as new ideas or updated information keeps popping up. Having a plan will save you time, and more importantly will help get your product completed on schedule.
As a start, you could simply open a new Google document and pour your heart out (and your mind) about all the ideas you have related to creating an info product. It should include subjects to cover, and chapter structure when possible. If may help to create a brief outline first, such as the main overall topics to cover. Treat this as more of a brain dump though rather than trying to write in final or keep everything in the exact order it will ultimately appear. You can organize it once you’re done with the brain dump and first round of writing.
To be sure you haven’t missed anything important, now is the time to browse through related books and pore through their table of content pages. Amazon and B&N are great resources as you can usually view the table of contents. You will not be doing that to copy contents, but to get the creative juices flowing and/or be sure you have not overlooked an important topic.
By now you will have a lot of things written down. It’s time to categorize your ideas into chapters. Depending on the format you have chosen in our previous step, you can now start fleshing out your outline and start adding some subtopics. Before you know it you will have a more thorough outline completed. Your info product is now almost ready!
It is sometimes helpful to step away from it for a while, even if just 24 hours. When we continuously work on something we can lose perspective or perhaps get a little frustrated. Give yourself a break and come back to it with fresh eyes and/or ears. The longer and more pieces you have in your info product, the more of a break you may need.
Fifth Step: Build A Subscriber List / Audience
Without you and I typing into the Google search bar daily, there would be no Google (the search engine part at least). That’s the power of having an audience for your product.
Here are a few reasons why building a subscriber list (audience) is essential for your product creation.
1. You need to own access to your subscribers. Audiences like Facebook groups are great. However, the only audience database you truly have control over is your own subscriber list. You could have a million followers on social media sites, but if any one of those sites shuts down or locks you out (even temporarily), you lose all of your followers. Why? You do not have ultimate control over social media sites. Reminder…you don’t own your autoresponder company either, so be sure to create regular backups of your list. If you lose access for whatever reason, you still have your list of subscribers and their emails.
2. Reaching your audience. The chance of someone opening an email is typically higher than visiting a blog post. (This is true even if your emails redirect to your blog posts because not everyone will be interested in every post.) A large percentage of people read their email more frequently than blogs, and surprisingly more than social media. That means having a subscriber list would help bring your product before a larger audience who would actually see it. If you’re going to be using emails and emailing marketing then it’s important to have a good autoresponder. Two great autoresponders are ActiveCampaign and Aweber which both have great automation tools. If you want to learn more about them, you can read the full comparison here.
3. Good vibes from your audience. Before someone shares their email and joins a list, while they may want the enticement offered in exchange for their info, they also have some level of trust for the list owner. So the first hurdle has been crossed. Most people only buy from those they know, like and trust. Emailing subscribers helps them know you and like you because you can really personalize mailings to your audience and share things in a way you simply don’t or can’t through social media.
Related: 12 Content Upgrades To Quickly Grow Your List
For new list building, MailChimp can be a great option. You get to enjoy their services for free until you reach 2000 subscribers. While some may reach that in just a few months, for others it may take quite a while. If so, the savings can really add up. MailChimp also has some great tutorials that walk you through everything step-by-step.
For more advanced, AWeber is a great option. It features some advanced functions found in more high-end mailing systems, but the pricing is quite reasonable compared to many of those other options. Of note if looking at AWeber, be aware there are two different components that make up the monthly pricing.
Reminder: Because it is so important, here’s one more reminder that no matter which email system you use, even if you’re new, create regular backups of your list of subscribers.
Sixth Step: Create A Giveaway Or A Lead Magnet
A giveaway and lead magnet are usually free, and many times are the enticement for someone to share their name and email. Options such as these can help you build your subscriber list. They are the same audience to which you will later offer your info product.
Having the right giveaway or lead magnet is very important. If you get it wrong, you will end up building a subscriber list of people with no real interest in your info product. For example, you should not use a lead magnet called “10 Ways To Personalize Your Office Desk” and create an info product like our example for pregnant women and new mothers. There is absolutely no connection.
To Charge Or Not To Charge
Some marketers charge for the lead magnet, even if just $1. They say it helps train their subscribers to buy from the very beginning and that it cuts down on tire kickers. Check what other marketers in your niche tend to do when comparing your options. You could also do a form of split testing and try both. Create both a free and paid lead gen with accompanying landing pages and separate lists. After creating your first info product and offering it to your subscribers, see which works best for you. That data helps you when you create your next one.
Seventh Step: Create Opt-in Forms/Landing Pages
This is where your blog or website visitors opt-in (subscribe) to your mailing list by entering their name and email in exchange for receiving your lead magnet. Then they need a landing page where they can receive your lead magnet.
You can put your opt-in forms in locations like the sidebar, the header, immediately after each blog post and more.
Most autoresponders have opt-in forms you can create during the list creation process. It’s usually pretty quick to do and offers easy-to-follow prompts. Then you simply copy and paste (embed) the code into the right spot on your website. You can usually customize things like font colors, styles and sizes, but the opt-in forms are generally pretty basic.
With plugins like LeadPages and OptinMonster, you can give your opt-in forms a lot more customization. It is also done through simple things like drag-and-drop without needing technical or coding knowledge.
Be creative in creating your opt-in forms (but don’t go overboard). A simple box saying “subscribe to my list” is boring and not likely to get good results. Also be clear with prospective subscribers on what they are subscribing to.
I recommend a dedicated landing page just for your lead magnet, meaning it is only for that one thing. ClickFunnels is great for creating landing pages. They have easy-to-use templates that are easy to customize without needing technical or coding knowledge. Just drag-and-drop.
After creating your awesome opt-in forms and landing pages, it’s time to spread the word!
Places you can share your opt-in form links include social media profiles and posts, your blog, guest posts and more. If you keep it relevant you should get some great traffic from social media. Everyone loves freebies! Sit back and watch your email list grow.
Related: 5 Top Resources For Terrific Traffic (Part 1)
There you have it! Seven steps to creating your own info product!
You can take your time creating an info product, especially if you are just starting to create a list of subscribers or it will have a lot of parts. However, if you are determined and make and follow a plan, you can pretty quickly create an info product and have it marketed in weeks instead of months!
Whichever you prefer, Go, Create!
And to help you do just that, and to help you follow these steps when creating your info product, be sure to check out the related Cheat Sheet in our Resource Library. Just click one of the Resource Library images, enter your info and you’re all set!
ARE YOU THINKING OF CREATING YOUR OWN INFO PRODUCT? OR HAVE YOU ALREADY CREATED ONE AND ADDING ANOTHER? PLEASE SHARE IN THE COMMENTS BELOW HOW THESE 7 STEPS MAY HAVE HELPED YOU.
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This is a really great, detailed post. I know it will help new bloggers in creating their product especially the part about having no audience at first and how to come about figuring out what exactly to create. This was a real struggle for me when I started my blog.
These are great tips whether you are selling your services or a product. This is very valuable information.
I’m definitely pinning this for later – thanks for that!
It’s always so stressful trying to create an info product to sell. This advice is very helpful! Thank you.
Loved these tips that are definitely spot on techniques I’ve used myself. Awesome Post!
I’m about to launch an info product so this is timely. Thanks for the detailed actionable steps.
That was a great blog thank you! So much info there. I’m just in the beginning stages of product creation. 🙂
This post is seriously packed with lots of great information. Pinning for later!
Thank you for such a great guide on info products! The step-by-step process really helps. I’d love to see more bloggers diversify their lead magnets as well, perhaps with relevant games like crosswords to solidify the information in their guides.
Great post, thanks for the valuable information, I’m just getting started in this information product venture…