Bite-sized lessons in building an online business that feels good.
The Digital Product Kickstart Kit: Your guide to creating and launching a digital product that sells.
I help online entrepreneurs (like YOU!) launch and relaunch digital products and podcasts to reach more people, grow their audience and become the go-to geniuses in their industry
I'm answering the question about creating and launching a digital product.
When I'm talking about digital products, I really mean online courses, memberships group programs, as well as some of the other ones like eBooks and templates, but in particular, I'm really looking at those courses, memberships and programs.
The most profitable digital products, in my experience, are the ones that solve a problem for a really specific group of people. They solve a specific problem for a specific group of people, and it doesn't matter so much what type of digital product it is. As long as it's the most effective way to solve that problem for that group of people.
The best way to start is to really get clear on what problems you can solve for somebody. This might sound really basic but if you don't know what problem your digital product is solving you're really going to struggle to create a product that delivers a transformation that people want to spend money on. And you're really going to struggle with communicating it in a way that makes the right people want to spend money.
So start with that problem and start with the specific group of people that you are solving that problem for, get clear on who they are then start to think about how could I structure this. Is this going to work better as a course? Is it like a one-off transformation where they actually need to learn quite a bit to achieve the transformation? Is it something that they already know how to do, but they just need that accountability and support?
Pick which one is going to best deliver the solution to that problem and then start launching it before you even invest any time into creating it.
The best way to know is to launch it until somebody spends money on your product until they actually buy it. We don't have full validation. You will never have a hundred percent certainty that somebody is going to buy your product until you put it out there and ask people to buy it. You can do surveys. You can talk to people, you can get their feedback.
But until they spend money on it, you don't know whether it's something that people are willing to spend money on. That is one of the reasons why launching it before you create it or while you create it is such a powerful way to validate it because it potentially saves you months of time creating something that people don't want.
The content needs to be snippets of what's inside your paid product. So if it's a course, you know, it's teaching little things that you teach inside the course, like giving them little teases and then you elaborate on it in the course.
I think this is a broken strategy because if somebody is not even ready to solve the problem that they have yet hit them with little solutions, isn't going to move them closer to buying. It's actually kind of disqualifying them.
If it's not selling then your marketing needs improvement. That includes tweaking product messaging. Includes how you package it, bonuses, pricing, payment plans, all of that fits into the category of marketing. If people are buying it on the other hand, if it is selling and the people who are buying it are not getting results, then that's a sign that the product needs improvement.
And it's a big misconception that if people aren't buying your product, your product's not good enough. No. If people aren't buying your product the way that you are communicating and positioning your product, isn't good enough. That is why marketing is what is going to drive those sales. The people buying the product, marketing and sales will drive that.
But the actual product content is what's going to drive the results once somebody buys it and you'll figure out pretty quickly where you need to make changes. The first iteration probably won't be good enough. And that's okay. We weren't know how to make it better until we get people into the product.
It doesn't matter what format as long as it's the format that your students can learn in best. And the audience you're talking to like they are your people. There is no one size fits all for every single audience. They don't need to have a video. Sometimes just direct to the camera.
If you really want to take your lighting up one extra step, sit in front of a window or buy a ring light. If you can teach it live even better. Otherwise, make that recording really simple and then you can go back and make it more professional later on.
Do you really need a full suite of offers? This is something where I think we believe that we need to have lots of different products before people will spend lots of money with us and we can make lots of money.
My recommendation would be to pick one problem that you can solve first. Create a product that solves that problem and launch it a couple of times. Launch at once, get feedback. Teach people to take people through the content, launch it again, get feedback, take people through the content, launch it again.
Each time you launch it, it gets easier, but each time you launch it, you also have feedback. You have feedback that allows you to tweak what's in it and make it an even better product and make the Launch messaging, even tighter, something that resonates more with the right people.
I guess it depends on what technology you want to bring in. So I love using Kajabi. Kajabi is where I host all of my courses. It's where the checkout is. You can use it as an all-in-one for your business. Like you can literally build your entire website on there. If you already have a website built elsewhere, you can build your sales pages and your landing pages on Kajabi.
You can use it as your email marketing tool, so you can build your email list and you can send them emails. The checkout system is where they can pay for your course or your membership or whatever and then the actual product that you are hosting in there. So you can do all of that on Kajabi.
We love to self-sabotage our launches because if we don't give it a hundred percent of our effort, then when it doesn't go as planned or when it quote unquote fails, we can say, oh, well I didn't give it a hundred percent anyway, so that's okay. It doesn't matter.
Whereas if we give a hundred percent and it doesn't go to plan or it fails, then we might beat ourselves up a little bit, or we might think like, what's wrong with me? I gave it everything I have. I'm not good enough and we create all of these different stories about what it means about us.
So we self-sabotage to stay in our comfort zone. The other reason you might self-sabotage is maybe you are uncomfortable teaching a large group of students. Or maybe you are uncomfortable earning a chunk of money in one go.
This comes down to how much support and accountability your students need to achieve the result. And you might even have like different versions in your business. You might have a course, and a group program that both deliver the same result, but the group program might be a smaller group of people who get accountability and support from you.
Whereas the cost might be completely self-paced and then that allows them to self-select so they can say, well, I know I need lots of support and hand holding. So I'm going to choose the group program versus somebody who knows their self-motivated. They can choose the costs. Aside from that, it really depends on the actual result that you are delivering. Figuring out also what you want to do because you get to design your business and that's pretty fun.
This really depends on what your strategy is with it. So if you've got something like Launch Magic, which I open twice a year, it runs for three months. And people only have seven days to buy it twice a year. It's open doors, open doors, close. I don't really talk about Launch Magic that much, other than when doors are open, I don't promote it actively.
I don't do a lot of active promotion and I know this is something I could do a lot more of but you don't actually have to speak about it as much as you think you do to sell it.
As for stopping selling old ones, I haven't retired from a course in a couple of years, I used to have a whole bunch of different marketing ones. So I only stopped selling them if they're no longer relevant, if they are really out of date or if I just don't want to sell them anymore.
On the flip side, I create new products when there's a problem that needs solving and when I have that space in my calendar and in my brain as well. I think there's a lot of magic that can come from relaunching the same product over and over and over again.
What a lot of people don't do in crowded marketplaces is they don't solve specific problems for specific groups of people or if they do, they don't know how to articulate it. So getting really clear on that specific problem, a specific group of people.
Specificity is what niching down is. It's not about limiting the audience that you're selling to, but it's about being the right choice for a specific group of people.
Stand out by knowing that specific group of people, that specific problem you solve, and why somebody should choose yours over somebody else's and then being able to articulate that.
We created the podcast launch plan in Trello and it's had its ups and downs. I never expected it to scale to the number of people that it has. And as a result, there have been a lot of people who have pirated it, they've passed it on to friends for free, and we can't control that. Whereas with Kajabi, you can, because people need to have that specific login to access the content.
I actually don't know of any free but legit platforms other than Kajabi. It's an investment in the future of your business.
Some good ones that you can use are case studies and testimonials from clients that you've worked with if it's a similar problem that you're solving or a similar transformation that you are delivering. Others might be your story, might be screenshots that you've received from people talking about how consuming your content has changed their life.
Those kinds of things work really well, obviously, the best kind of social proof is from people who have been through the course. So if you already have quite an engaged group of people, maybe you have past clients, send them through the cost first, and sell it to them first in return. Obviously, charge them for it because otherwise they won't value it and they won't take action.
But send them through it at a lower price point in return for feedback and for a testimonial, if they had a good experience.
This is why I say Launch it before you've created it, or while you are creating it because you can tell while you're launching it, you will tell whether you are getting traction or not.
You'll tell if what you are saying is starting to resonate. You'll find that out when you start launching it. However, if you are in your little program creation and you're spending all this time creating it, but you're not actually doing anything to remarket it, it's going to be a long time before you get that feedback loop.
It's going to be a long time before you start to understand whether people want it, whether the messaging resonates, whether the way you are talking about it resonates, whether the way you're teaching it is the right way to get them that transformation.
Australia is quite a small market and I think you'll realise this after a while, if you just stick with Australia, you will realise Australia is a very small market and as long as what you are teaching is applicable to anybody, no matter where they are in the world. Then yeah, go international. Think big.
So targeting, you might start by targeting just Australia. If that is where your audience is right now, then start with where you're at, but don't limit yourself to just Australia, because you are afraid of what it might mean to go international. Or you are worried about time zones. All of those other things can be overcome.
Yes, I have done this several times. Creating a week-by-week gave me that deadline to get it done. So, yes, pre-sell the course and build it as you go. That's a great way to launch. That's probably the only way I would do it these days in my business. It's just so much risk to put in all this time and energy into creating something before you know if anybody wants it.
It can be either of those and I have both in my business. So, no, it doesn't need to be a live product.
I would generally recommend 60 to 90 days, 60 days only if you are already showing up regularly for your audience already emailing them regularly, and posting content somewhere regularly. It doesn't have to be social media.
Otherwise, if you need to grow your audience a bit, if you aren't already showing up consistently sharing content consistently, then I would say 90 days for the first time that you are launching it.
If you have a group program where it's all on zoom and the recordings, you can just share the zoom link with the recordings. Great. Do that on zoom. But if you're running a course with modules and content, or if you're running a membership with recurring recordings that they need to access, use Kajabi. It makes it so simple. it's everything in one go.
Usually, clear writing is better than clever writing at any point in time. But it's about that strategy and that structure and once you have that strategy and that structure to work in writing, it becomes a lot easier, even if you're not naturally a writer, if you're not naturally good at sales.
Firstly pick a webinar hosting platform. I use Demio, I've also used Webinar Jam in the past, and I really like both of them. They're both great. You can use Zurich but it does lack a little bit of functionality like you can't see who has shown, who's registered and then showing up live or not showing up.
And the registration page isn't as nice as if you have like a little custom form that you can embed in your webinar, registration page and have people sign up through that. So pick a platform Demio and Webinar, then pick a topic. Make sure that the topics are really clear and really succinct.
Don't overload them with information. Create lots of slides to keep people engaged. The more slides the better.
So that 90-day strategy of sharing that content, that's going to get somebody to join your audience and be ready to buy when you open doors. That's probably going to be the fastest. If you really want the fastest, throw a lot of money into ads. For most of us, that's not really within the budget. That's not a feasible option. And even then, if you don't have the messaging and the strategy right, you're wasting your money.
I personally don't think you should be outsourcing much of your launch because you are the expert. You are the person who knows your audience best, you are the person who knows your content best. So you are the person who is best placed to work in your Launch.
Having said that though. There are things you can outsource. You can outsource the strategy to somebody like me. I do this in my Launch, VIP intensives, which is like a whole day of me working on any aspect of that launch strategy.
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I help online entrepreneurs (like you!) to build a profitable online business that keeps growing even when they're offline.