3 Easy Steps to Creating Your First Product

For coaches in nearly any field, product creation is the best way to:

  • Reach a wider audience
  • Grow your brand
  • Earn more profits

So why aren’t more coaches adopting the product creation strategy? Like you, they’re stuck in the process, unsure of the steps to take to create a great product.

Step 1: Identify a Need

As a coach, you have great insight into the wants and needs of your ideal client. You chat with her on Facebook, answer her email questions, respond to the comments she leaves on your blog, and even work with her one-on-one.

What is it she needs the most help with right now? This is the product you should be creating, because you already know you have a built-in audience.

Step 2: Gather Your Documentation

If you’ve been coaching for more than a few weeks, chances are you already have all of the answers required—all you have to do it organize it. Some places to look for content you can repurpose include:

  • Your blog
  • Your emails (and autoresponder)
  • Your client calls
  • Your social media accounts
  • Your YouTube channel
  • Your personal checklists and worksheets

All of these things (and many more) can be edited and organized into a comprehensive product that solves a serious issue and you can do it in less time than you might think. After all, you already have the bulk of the work done!

Step 3: Create the Solution

Now that you have your content, it’s time to put it together in a way that will make sense to your audience. Will you…

  • Write a Kindle book? This is a great option for solving a very focused, single problem. Even better, Kindle books offer a fabulous opportunity to reach a wider audience.
  • Create a membership site? For a comprehensive, step-by-step course, you can’t beat the flexibility of a membership site.
  • Offer a group coaching program? Add personal time with you to your membership site and you’ve got an instant group coaching program. Not only that but you’ve dramatically upped the value (and cost) as well.

Your choice will depend largely on the scope of the solution. Is it a simple answer that can be explained in a few pages or is it a complex issue that requires several weeks of work?

Creating a product doesn’t have to be difficult or time-consuming. Sure, you can design a massive, all-inclusive course if you like, but when you’re just getting started, that’s a daunting prospect. Instead, work with what you already have and you’ll have your first product up and selling in no time.

How to Scale Your Business to Earn Unlimited Income

It’s an undeniable fact.

When you trade hours for dollars—whether you’re a cleaner or a brain surgeon—your income potential has a cap.

There are, after all, only so many hours in the day.

Of course, you can (and should) be raising your rates periodically. As your skills and expertise grow, so should your profits. But you’re still constrained by the number of hours in your day.

Savvy entrepreneurs have figured out how to scale their business to earn nearly unlimited income, and you can, too.

Group Coaching

Creating a group-coaching program is a fantastic way to expand your coaching audience, help more people and earn more profits. Group programs can have a small handful of members you personally connect with, or hundreds of members who have access to you via a private forum or Facebook group.

Most group coaching programs feature some kind of training, either weekly video or written lessons, live Q&A calls, or a combination. The best programs are step-by-step with a clear goal and end date.

As a coach, it’s easy to ramp up your current one-on-one offerings to a group plan. All that’s required is to document your systems and organize them into a logical training order.

Product Creation

Another great way to earn higher profits is to create self-study products your potential clients can purchase for a one-time fee and use to learn at their own pace. These can run the gamut from a simple Kindle book to a comprehensive, multi-week training that’s delivered via membership site.

In fact, the more variety you have in your products, the more opportunity you’ll have to reach a larger audience, and to turn new visitors into one-on-one clients by leading them strategically through your funnel.

The best news of all, though, is this: You already have everything you need to create group coaching programs and products. It’s in the training you provide to your clients every single day, and in the systems and processes you use in your own business. Your documentation, checklists, brainstorming and other materials can easily be organized and packaged into one-off products and step-by-step group coaching programs your clients will love.

How to Easily Graduate From Coach to Product Seller

Coaching is an awesome career. You get to spend your time helping people achieve their goals in a very real way. It’s exhilarating and oh-so-rewarding!

But at some point you begin to ask yourself, “How can I reach even more people? How can I help more people reach their goals?”

The answer? Create and sell self-study programs.

Think about it. There just aren’t enough hours in the day for you to coach everyone who needs you. Not only that, but not everyone who needs your expertise can afford you, and not everyone has the time to invest. And even if they have the time and the money, they may not be willing to work one-on-one with a coach. Some people prefer the DIY method but that doesn’t mean you can’t help them.

It just means you have to reach these people in a new way, and for many coaches, that means creating products.

Easy Product Creation for Coaches

Here’s the problem many coaches face when it comes to creating products: They get stuck in the doing. They’re so accustomed to guiding their clients on the phone or via webinar that they have a hard time putting together a step-by-step plan without that feedback they get on a live call.

How can you know what people need if you’re not talking to them one on one?

The answer is right in your own life, in the processes and systems that you use day after day, and it works no matter what your coaching niche is.

Weight loss coaches are nutrition experts with loads of go-to recipes and plenty of exercise routines. All they have to do is write them down and package them into a 6-week or 9-week self-help guide.

Business coaches run a business, and chances are you have dozens of checklists and worksheets and other documentation that your clients would love to get their hands on. Brand them, bundle them, and get them up for sale.

Life coaches have done plenty of work on their own well-being and growth, and likely have goal setting strategies, affirmations, confidence building techniques, and tons of other self-help ideas to share.

These are the very things your market needs and wants from you, and it’s the perfect way for you to reach a larger audience. The lower price point means you’ll attract a whole new market—many of whom will “graduate” from the DIY approach to one-on-one coaching…with you!

If you’ve wondered how to expand your reach without working more hours, product creation is the answer. If you’ve struggled to earn more profits without working yourself to death, product creation is the answer. And if you’ve ever wanted to be of service to those who can’t afford a one-on-one coach, then product creation is definitely the answer.

And sharing your personal systems is the easiest way to create products your market wants and needs.

The Hot Selling Program You Can Create In an Afternoon

How many partially completed products, books, and group coaching programs do you have sitting around on your computer?

If you’re like most entrepreneurs, the answer is a resounding “far too many!”

And frankly, the reason you have all of those incomplete books and programs isn’t because you don’t know your subject, or because you’re a poor writer, or even because you don’t have time.

The real reason is because you’re overthinking the whole process.

You’re buying into the belief that you must:

  • Create something from scratch
  • Create something that looks just like every other program in your niche
  • Create something so comprehensive and massive that it encompasses every aspect of your subject, from soup to nuts.

And every one of these beliefs is holding you back from creating the exact program your market is looking for—and it just happens to be something you can put together in an afternoon (or less) with the content you already have on hand.

Step 1: Identify The Problem

This is not a huge, overreaching problem such as “how do I build a mailing list” but rather a single problem that has a single solution. So rather than trying to solve the problem of list building, try solving the problem of setting up a mailing list.

It’s a single problem that you very likely have the solution for right in your business documentation.

Step 2: Define Your Process

Using the example of setting up a mailing list, chances are you have worksheets and checklists for your VA (or you) to follow. It’s a step-by-step plan that walks you or your team through the process of setting up a new mailing list.

For someone who’s struggling with getting their first autoresponder set up, this simple documentation can be a real lifesaver.

Step 3: Share What Works

That’s it! Package up your already existing business documentation and viola! You have a new product you can get up for sale in a single afternoon.

The only question now is, why haven’t you done it yet?

3 Reasons We Love the “Peek Over Your Shoulder” Style of Coaching

How compelling is it when you see this on a sales page?

“Peek over my shoulder while I…”

It doesn’t matter if the seller is demonstrating how to bake a cake or how to build a website, we want to see. There’s just something intriguing about the opportunity to see an expert do what she does best. And that’s just what makes these types of products best sellers in nearly every niche.

  1. We want our methods justified.

We very likely already perform the tasks this “over the shoulder” product teaches but we question if we’re doing it the best, most efficient way. Is there a newer method that works better? Is there a less expensive or time consuming technique? Or do we know a better way (that feeling of smugness is its own reward)?

By purchasing the products that show us exactly how others work, we’re finding out how we can work better, while still building up our confidence.

  1. We want the tried-and-true approach.

When we’re just starting out (or even if we’re not) it can be helpful to cut through all the trial and error and get right to what works. After all, if you can skip the months and months of learning—not to mention the expense—why wouldn’t you? If you trust that the seller really does have it all figured out, purchasing the over-the-shoulder training can be a great shortcut and you can always refine the methods as you go.

  1. We want to know the “secrets” of the pros.

Occasionally, we fall into the trap of thinking that there must be a “secret.” If only we had the right template, we’d finally be able to write that novel. If only we had the right interview questions, we’d finally be able to find a VA. If only we had the right dating profile checklist, we’d finally get a date.

Of course, there’s more to success in any niche than a checklist or template, but when we can dig into what is proven to work for others, it gives us that boost of confidence we need to continue moving forward.

So next time you see a product or program that offers to share an expert’s proven system, ask yourself why it seems so compelling to you. What’s triggering your interest? Chances are, it’s one (or more) of these reasons.

3 Proven Ways to Market Your New Business

The world is filled with great ideas and broke business owners with fabulous products but no sales.

The fact is, ideas are not what drives most business success. Marketing does. So before you quit your day job to branch out on your own, it pays to have a solid marketing plan in place. Start with these 5 ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

Free Webinars

For information product sellers, coaches, and service providers, one of the best sources of new clients is in free training webinars. No matter what your niche, the promise of in-depth training at no cost is enough to entice potential clients to part with an email address (which you’ll be able to market to later) and an hour of their time.

Not only that, but webinars are a fantastic way for those potential customers to get to know you better. And the better they know you, the more likely they are to buy.

Content Marketing

Not comfortable hosting a webinar? Hit the keyboard and start sharing your thoughts and ideas via your blog, ebooks, guest articles and other written content. For internet marketers, this gives readers a taste of what they can expect from your product. If you sell physical products, it provides the perfect opportunity to share usage tips and other important information with your buyers.

Of course, there’s another important benefit to content marketing, too: search engine optimization. Google and other search engines index the words on your website and use the information to present search results to their users. Content marketing is a tool you can use to make the most of these results, and to bring more potential buyers to your website.

Paid Advertising

Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google and plenty of other sites all offer paid placement, and with today’s powerful analytics tools, it’s easy to create ads and drive traffic inexpensively. Consider starting with Facebook, since the cost is low and it’s easy to target your ads to your ideal client. Once you’ve perfected your funnel, you can branch out into more costly ads with a larger reach, such as Google AdWords or another ad network.

Don’t limit yourself to these three marketing methods though. There are dozens of others you can try, including affiliate programs, JV partnerships, automated funnels, direct mail campaigns, and even television advertising. The key is to keep testing and tweaking to make the most of every marketing effort, so that your business continues to grow.

How to Have a Stress-Free Business Launch

Let’s face it, the last thing you want to do now that you’ve decided to finally leave the 9 to 5 job is to add more stress to your life. Isn’t that why you decided to build your own business in the first place? You’re looking for freedom from your awful boss, nasty coworkers, and the limitations of a fixed salary.

But if you’re trading all that in for a different kind of stress, what have you really gained? Before you kiss your cubicle goodbye, be sure you first build a solid foundation—and we don’t just mean business-wise.

Build a Financial Safety Net

Nothing stresses us out quite like worrying about money. Whether you’re concerned about those college tuition bills you’ll be facing in a few years, or worse, not sure how you’re going to make the rent, it’s easy to lose your business mojo. As a new business owner, you certainly don’t want money trouble casting a shadow over your entrepreneurial dream.

Before you turn in your resignation, set aside some cash in case of a rainy day. Aim for at least three months of living expenses but more is definitely better. Hopefully you won’t need it but having some cash on hand will definitely relieve the pressure of having a new business that’s not earning its keep—yet.

Make Sure Your Family is on Board

Money troubles are bad, but there may be one thing that’s worse: an unsupportive (or downright hostile) spouse. And as any entrepreneur will tell you, not everyone understands the drive to be a business owner. In fact, most people find it pretty scary to step away from that regular paycheck to chase after a dream.

If that sounds like your husband (or wife) don’t take it personally. They’re not making a statement about your ability. More than likely, they’re just worried about what the future holds. Do your best to understand where they’re coming from, and be sure to clearly explain your ideas, why you are confident it will work, and how you plan to cover the start up expenses and manage the risk.

If he or she is still not on board, consider starting slow, with a part-time business while still working your day job. That will give you the opportunity to prove your idea is workable, and might just help your spouse get as excited about it as you are.

Take Time for YOU

No matter what’s going on with your money, your spouse or your business, you need to be sure to schedule some “you” time. No one can work all the time, regardless of how driven you are. And no one can stay healthy while maintaining a nonstop schedule. Go for a walk, hit the gym, get a pedicure, or just binge on your favorite brainless television show. The point is simply to take time away from your desk to rest and rejuvenate. Without it, you’ll soon find yourself overwhelmed and stressed, even if you truly love your new business.

3 Surefire Ways to Create In-Demand Products and Services

If there’s one thing that holds promising entrepreneurs back from launching their business, it’s this: a lack of confidence in their products. Sure, you think that new course or workshop is a great idea, but how do you know it will sell?

Imagine spending weeks or even months of time—plus the cost of document design, video editing and all the other pieces that go along with it—only to discover it’s not what your audience wants or needs.  How frustrating would that be?

You don’t have to leave it to chance, though. There are plenty of ways to test your idea before spending the time and energy on a full launch.

Just Ask

This is the simplest way to get a feel for what your market needs and wants. Simply ask them. Create a survey with Survey Monkey (or even a Google form) and send it out to your mailing list. For best results, keep it short, but do ask:

  • What they’re struggling with
  • Their preferred learning method (video, text, audio, etc.)
  • What they feel the training is worth (what would they pay)

These three pieces will tell you everything you need to know to create a program that’s practically guaranteed to sell.

Listen to Their Complaints

If you have a community (or are part of one) of ideal clients, pay attention to what they’re asking about the most. These are the things they need help with. For example, if you’re a business coach and your Facebook group is filled with questions about running Facebook ads, then clearly there is a need for some training in that area.

Study Your Competition

Hopefully you have a list of competitors and you’re reading their blogs and emails, and lurking in their Facebook groups. This is a great way to gain insight into what they’re doing—not to copy them, but to discover what’s hot right now.

Consider buying their paid products as well. Again, you should never copy them, but you can either:

  • Promote them as an affiliate
  • Create a better, more comprehensive version
  • Create a lite, lower-cost version

Creating products in a vacuum is a great way to waste a lot of time and money on programs that won’t sell. Instead, pay attention to what your market is asking for, find out what they’re willing to pay, and delve into your competition’s offers. The information you gain from these three activities alone will give you incredible insight into your market and what they want and need, and make it easy to create your own hot-selling program.

Build a Business, Not Another Job

Many people dream of working for themselves, being their own boss, and having the freedom to only take on clients and projects they love.

What they don’t realize, though, is that there is a huge difference between building a business and being self-employed.

Business owners scale their income. Self-employed people trade dollars for hours

Business owners leverage the skills and talents of others. Self-employed people rely only on their own skills.

Discouraged yet? Don’t be. Every business owner started out self-employed. Just don’t stay there. These tips will help you build a sustainable business instead of just another job.

Don’t Try to Do It All Yourself

Building a sustainable business requires that you leverage the talents and time of others. While it might seem cost-effective to simply do everything yourself—especially in the start-up phase when you likely have more time than money—it’s a path to burnout and stress.

Instead, separate your tasks into those that you love and are especially suited for (such as marketing) and those you dislike and aren’t good at. Then make a solid plan to get those that you aren’t good at off your list of things to do. If you feel like you can’t afford to outsource it all right now, start with what you tend to procrastinate the most on, even if it’s just a few hours each month.

Don’t Allow Yourself to Work All the Time

The trouble with working at home is that you live at work. And that means that there’s no clear line in the sand between your work day and your home life.

Since there’s always work to do, it’s easy to find yourself working every available moment—often to the detriment of your family relationships.

You can help avoid this by:

  • Setting—and maintaining—clear work hours
  • Having an office with a door you can close when you’re done
  • Scheduling time for family and other activities
  • Taking time for yourself

Vacations and Downtime Are Important

Don’t create a business that requires you to be “in the office” every day. At the start, you may need to be available more, but you should definitely be planning for the day when you can be “off the grid” for extended periods of time.

  • Have trusted contractors who can handle things when you’re not available
  • Leverage automation tools such as autoresponders and autowebinar systems
  • Create repeatable systems so you’re not always re-inventing the wheel

While you might not be able to hit the road with no internet access for weeks at a time, at the very least you should be able to reduce your workload to a daily check-in.

Sound impossible? It’s not. With some forethought and planning, you can create a team—and the systems they need—to successfully run your business without becoming overwhelmed and overworked.

Mindset Tricks of Successful Entrepreneurs

Want to know what sets the uber-successful apart from the wannabe entrepreneurs?

It’s not money, or brilliant ideas, or even powerful friends.

All of those things (and more) are nice to have, but they’re not a requirement of success. What is a must-have, though, is a good attitude. Without the proper mindset, you’ll constantly be battling your own brain, and that’s exhausting.

  • You’ll allow yourself to believe your ideas are no good
  • You’ll remain convinced that you aren’t smart enough
  • You’ll be certain that someone else did it (whatever “it” is) better

And before you know it, you’ll have talked yourself right out of launching your new program, asking for a JV partnership, or writing your book. In no time at all, you’ll be back at your day job, working away on someone else’s business because you don’t have the confidence to create your own.

But a simple mindset change can make all the difference.

Dress for Success

Ladies, this one is for you. When we work at home, it’s easy to fall into a habit of wearing sweatpants and T-shirts to the office. After all, why dress up just for the dog?

But if you’re looking for a quick and easy way to instantly shift your mindset in the right direction, ditch the yoga pants and break out the lipstick. You’ll suddenly find you feel more professional, more confident, and sexier, too. (That last one won’t help your business, but it might just help your love life, and that can’t hurt, can it?)

Never Let Fear Drive Your Decisions

Too many would-be entrepreneurs operate with a scarcity mindset rather than approaching business from a place of abundance. Rather than telling yourself that you can’t afford to hire a virtual assistant or work with a coach, try reframing your thoughts.

Rather than thinking, “I can’t afford to attend that event,” ask yourself, “How can I earn the money to invest in this trip?”

Rather than saying, “I have to do everything myself because I can’t afford to hire a VA,” remind yourself that your hourly rate potential is much more than you’d pay a virtual assistant. Then fill those hours you’re saving by outsourcing with money-making tasks of your own.

By reformatting your thoughts, you’ll turn that negative money talk into positive solutions that help you grow.