How do you create a business that will thrive in the current virtual economy? This series will give you the framework, tools, and resources to do just that.
Welcome to Part 2 of the Series, How to Thrive in the Virtual Economy.
I want to emphasize an important concept.This is about earning income, but it’s also about connecting with your audience. As in-person connection is currently severed (during this Pandemic of 2020), we must find ways to still connect with our audience. The internet is now the most powerful way to do that.
This is more than just selling, it’s maintaining connection with your audience. This is especially vital during these times when you can get left behind by competitors who’re active online.
These tips, tools and resources will also be valuable long after the pandemic ends. You can use this framework to continue to reach people online so that your business connects with people on the internet and also in person.
In the last article, I gave a broad overview of the 5 Ps. They provide a good framework for business owners who want to succeed online.
The 5 Ps of thriving in this virtual economy
Today, let’s home in on the first of the Ps, product.
Although this P is labeled product, please keep an open mind. This can also include services. The P is referring to the items(s) you will sell online. They can be digital downloads (such as an ebook) or services you provide via phone or internet (as explained below).
Here are a few common examples of products and services that can be sold online.
- Digital Courses
- Physical books
- Coaching, counseling, consulting sessions.
Let’s first look at digital courses.
Often, people remark that they don’t have anything to teach. But we all have something to teach and many of us are already teaching in our business, but just haven’t packaged it up into a course.
Take a speaker, for example. Depending on the topic, much of what they speak on can be packaged and sold as a course.
The same goes for coaches, consultants, trainers, and other service providers.
Last week we reviewed product formats (such as video, audio, written, and image). But creating a course is more than just formatting content. For the course to be effective, you need to be aware of some basic teaching and learning fundamentals. This is important so that the courses you sell help your customers get the most optimal result.
Now, let’s get to the selling part. It’s not enough to create products. You don’t just want to make products, you want to make products that sell. That’s the point of this, remember; we want to thrive in this virtual economy.
Products that sell
It’s impossible to be 100% certain which of your products/services will sell. But, it is possible for you to be prudent and create products that have the highest likelihood to sell.
How do you do that?
- Know your audience
What products match your audience wants/needs? If you’re not new to your market, you should know this. You can also assess what your audience has responded to in the past.
If you are new, start your research. Ask your audience
If you’re unsure what to create, ask. Asking your audience is one of the best forms of research to help you determine which products to create, and when. You can survey them, ask them on calls, ask questions in online forums and groups, on your social media pages.
The answers you get will be valuable insights to help decide what products to create.
2. Know your market
You can glean a lot of information from your market. What’s in demand and selling? What’s trending? Where is there a gap in the market?
3. Keep it simple
If this will be your first online course, don’t try to create a complex course covering multiple topics. Pick one aspect of what you do, teach, or share, and create the course around that one aspect.
4. Test and assess
Because you’ll never know with 100% certainty what will sell well, every product you create is a test. You’re testing to see what does takes off. Of course, your result will also depend on how well you promote your product and yourself/company.
Once you create and promote your product, it’s time to assess. You want to understand what people are engaging with. What are they purchasing? What objections – if any – do they have to purchasing? You can use this information to make product (or promotional) adjustments.
It all comes down this….
Having an awareness of your ideal clients and customers. Knowing your audience and market also helps you know which format is best for your products.
Later in this series, we’ll go over how this awareness also helps you know how and where to promote your products and services.
So, now that you have a framework for creating products that sell, along with how to format them for the internet, what will you do first?
The first step to thriving in this economy is to take action. Make a plan, do your research, and then implement.
It’s time to thrive, and together we can do this!