As a solo business owner, you need to be creating and developing products of your own. Control over what you have to sell is very important and you gain that control by owning your products.
No matter how green you are in your niche, you can always start working on a product of your own. Very few prospects are actually looking for your expert credentials (unless, perhaps it’s a medical topic that requires that level of expertise). Sure, experience is always a plus, but if your product meets a need, fills a void, or solves a problem, that is the most important concern of the buyer.
On your blog, you may already plan to be using affiliate marketing and maybe ad revenue to generate income. But if you want to take control of your income and bump it to the next level, and you should start working on product creation, or licensing, or hiring others to do product creation for you.
Forget About Expertise and Competition
The first thing you have to do is face your unfounded fear that the market is saturated or that you can’t produce anything valuable for your customers in the niche. Nobody really cares about that but you. Don’t let your inexperience keep you from offering value and don’t use it as an excuse to hang back and not “put yourself out there.”
Let’s assume you want to create a digital book (an ebook) on some sub topic within your niche.
There might already be 100 books, 1,000 books, or 10,000 books within your niche topic. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t write as well. People who are in your niche don’t read just one book and then stop. If you can give value through your education, training, knowledge, or observation others will pay to learn from you, especially if you can present your views and opinions in a unique, refreshing, funny, or insightful way.
Usually buyers educate themselves on a topic based on the opinions and views of a broad range of other people. For example, if you suffer from panic and anxiety, you’ll most likely want to read dozens of books and pick up tips from various authors from varying backgrounds.
Pregnant women don’t just buy What to Expect When You’re Expecting. They buy several books that help prepare them for the upcoming event in different ways. In most niches, people are looking for fresh ideas or different slants or the latest research, rather than focusing on the “professional job titles” of the author.
Look at competition as a sign of a healthy niche. It means there’s much interest, that many authors are trying to meet demand. So you want to jump right in and share your ideas, too! You have something valuable and important to say.
No one is asking you to write War and Peace here. Customers want is value for their money. A good way to begin creating your first product is to start out small and write a 10-page report filled with useful tips and sell it for $4.95, or $7, some reasonable amount that niche participants will pay without knowing anything about the author.
Starting small sometimes takes the pressure off of you because you don’t have to write a lot, you’re not charging a ton, and the conversion of sales is easier given the small purchase price. You won’t be able to retire on the income from one report; however, creating your first product will open your eyes to the process of creation and selling and it will be invaluable to your education as a business owner.
Creating an eBook
Let’s go through the eBook creation process. You want to find a slant first, an angle that will help position your ebook. So you have options – write an A-Z book that covers everything (often intimidating for a first timer), or choose to go deeply into one specific sub-topic, or you might decide to interview other professionals and compile a book of their views and expertise. There are many, many angles and methods of presenting your materials. None are “the best way” to create your ebook, all methods can be successful.
Some marketers like to think in terms of a “series” of related ebooks. Whatever approach you decide upon, it’s probably best to concentrate on a narrow scope for your first product in order to get your feet wet. After you’ve mastered the ebook process, you will be in a better position to write more in-depth and far reaching material.
Then do a little research to create an outline for your product. Brainstorm first, then look on news sites, in forums, on competing blogs, in the table of contents of other books, in keyword tools, etc, to find additional ideas for your outline.
So your outline might look something like this if you’re writing about aromatherapy to relieve stress and anxiety:
Chapter 1: How Stress Affects Your Body and Mind
Chapter 2: How Aromatherapy Soothes Your Stress
Chapter 3: Essential Oils and Blends That Deliver a Calming Effect
Chapter 4: Aromatherapy in the Bath
Chapter 5: Using Aromatherapy at Work and on Your Commute
Chapter 6: The Best Scent Dispensers to Place in and Around Your Home
Chapter 7: Additional Tips for Maximizing Aromatherapy Success
Chapter 8: Where to Buy Your Supplies at Discount Prices
Then write your content using short paragraphs, subtitles, and simple to understand language. Be sure to present your own ideas and thoughts rather than copying other people’s opinions, thoughts, and content.
It’s good to educate yourself by reading the thoughts of others. But it’s plagiarism if you create a knock off of someone elses content. Not only that, but keep in mind that many in your audience will be reading other niche created content too and if you make it obvious that you do nothing but rip off previously published content in your niche, your reputation will suffer.
When you finish creating your ebook, turn it into a PDF and zip it up in a zip file ready for distribution.
Now you’ll need a way of selling it – a platform for distributing your ebook product. You can use a site like ClickBank (where you’ll need a site to sell it from), or you can use JVZoo, where you don’t need anything else up front.
Another option is to place your ebook on the Amazon Kindle platform. With Kindle, you don’t upload the PDF though . . . you will need to turn your word processing files into the Kindle-formatted style. There are tutorials that will show you how to do on the KDP site.
Utilize free promotional days on KDP Select to give your ebook away free and hopefully generate reviews for it. Never create phony reviews as Amazon is well aware of the various scammer methods and they will shut down your account.
Make sure, once you have an ebook ready for distribution, that you have a professional looking ebook cover made. It will help to draw interest and curiosity to your book. You can put the image on your web site and market your book to your social media contacts. Ask for comments, reviews, likes and shares of your ebook. Some seasoned marketers swear, “There is no such thing as bad publicity.”
Consider a Membership Site
If you don’t want to create an ebook, you might consider creating a membership or subscription web site. Some business owners prefer to break up their content into individual modules to explain one or more niche concepts. Then they “lock” their modules into a private paid site where members can gain access to the content and pay for it on a recurring basis.
You can make your site ongoing training where members pay indefinitely, or you can set up a fixed monthly membership that runs for a set length of time (for example, 12 months). The ranges of niches, topics, and content for membership sites are vast.
Some site owners use PLR for their content. Others prefer to offer original and unique content which is probably the better option since it is one-of-a-kind and will be new to all the members. You can offer videos, audios, written content, even products, software, and graphics as possible content types for membership sites. The most important consideration is to offer value, benefit for the money, and whatever the members are wanting and expecting based upon whatever you promised in the sales offer for your membership site.
You can also create something like an e-course that gets drip-fed to your audience month after month, either for a set time period, or as an indefinite recurring membership.[This is the end of Part 1]
To your online business success!