If you currently trade hours for dollars, you’re going to find it difficult to scale your biz. Period. Despite everything you read about charging your worth, there will come a point where you’re tapped out for time + can’t possibly add another client AND you’ve maxed your pricing (because what people are willing to pay will eventually come into play).
I’m a really annoying friend sometimes. I’m notorious for turning our life conversations to business every. Single. Time. They might be annoyed I didn’t care about that weird thing their hair did, or how the barista spelled their name wrong, or how their latest cleanse is going, but they do always walk away with some good ideas for their business, and often some product ideas (yes, especially my service-based business friends). Turning your services into products is one of the most challenging steps for a new, drowning, service-based business owner to take in their business.
But, truly, my favorite thing about turning my services into products is that there is always some way to make money, even when I’m offline.
Here’s five strategies you can use today to start turning your service into a product:
1. Create a product for your FUTURE clients! The ones that really, really need your services but aren’t quite ready to hire you (either for financial reasons or because their business just isn’t there yet). It’s a win-win-win! They get to polish up and grow their businesses by working “with” you, you get to spread your passion for what you do to more entrepreneurs, and you create a passive income stream to help you further your own business (which continues the cycle of sharing the wealth)!
2. Find out what your tribe needs. There’s plenty of ways to find out what your audience struggles with. You just have to ask! Keep a list of the questions you’re asked and the types of leads you receive, and don’t be afraid to survey your audience a few times a year. Is one of your services in higher demand than the others? Look at your most popular blog posts and read the comments. Ask your current clients what their biggest problems are (or what their major goals are for the next quarter/year). Finally, if you don’t have an audience yet, find someone else’s. Go to a Facebook group, like Savvy, Heart Centered Biz Bosses or the Creative Empire podcast’s group and ask what people need. They’ll tell you!
3. Brainstorm solutions to their problems. Analyze your research and take 20 minutes to think about how you can help solve their problems without 1-on-1 support. It can be a DIY or “done for you” approach, like my contract templates, or a compliment to services that you currently offer, like teaching new parents a few pointers for taking better photos of their adorable newborns in a worksheet.
4. Decide on your product and outline your content. Now that you know what your product will accomplish for your customers, you need to decide on exactly what it will be… eBook? course? subscription service? Email course? Outline your content in advance so that it’s focused and on point. As a bonus tip- once you have the outline, if you don’t have time to design it, hire a designer! (My recommendations, here and here). You want to create something valuable but digestible… nobody wants to read a textbook (and nobody has time to write a thesis for homework, either).
5. Have a plan. I’m a little remiss for making this not only the last step but also only mentioning it once. 70% of a your new product resources (aka the time and money it takes to create it) should be dedicated to the launch. My biggest flops are always a result of launching poorly. There are so many moving pieces to successfully executing a passive income product (beyond the actual creation of it), but it’s definitely do-able. It’s not enough to create something amazing if no one sees it-- you need to market it and get it into the right hands.
What kinds of products are you thinking of? What’s the biggest barrier to your success in selling products right now? Leave a comment below!