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Odds are you’re visiting Work-At-Home Success today to get information. Information is one of the top reasons people go online. They want to learn how to solve a problem, research an idea, or get tips. You can profit off information, and in this article, I’m going to show you how.
What is an Info Product?
An info product is essentially any packaged information. The most common types of information products are:
- Home Study Courses
- Video Tutorials
- Training Materials
Information products existed before the Internet. Many were sold through mail order. However, the Internet has made it easier and faster to create and distribute information. Everything on the list above can be produced digitally.
Why Sell an Information Product?
There are several reasons why information products are an ideal way to make money at home.
- They’re easy to make. While some types might require more time and equipment (i.e. video), others simply require a text document (i.e. an ebook).
- They’re affordable to make and distribute. You can create a text-based product (i.e. ebook, report, manual) using your word processing program. However, video has become easier and more affordable too. For example, I used a webcam ($55) and Zoom.us (free) to record the video interviews at the WAHS Virtual Summit.
- Easy to market. While information products won’t sell themselves, if you’re tapping into an idea people want to learn about, finding and telling them about your product shouldn’t be hard. There are many ways to get your information product to the masses affordably.
- Builds passive income. By passive, I don’t mean set-it-and-forget-it. Passive income essentially involves creating something that you can sell over and over again without expending time to recreate it. In a job or service-based business, you always have to put in the hours to make the money. With information, you put in the hours once to create the product, and then your only time is spent in marketing it because you can sell it over and over.
While information products are one of the best flexible work-at-home options, there are some downsides to it as well. The biggest challenge is that they take time to create. Below I’ll give you some ideas to speed up the process. Second, depending on what you create, the price points may be low. For example, an ebook on Amazon will likely only sell for $3.99 to $9.99, depending on the topic.
How to Start an Information Product Business
The first step to selling information is in deciding what information to sell.
But Leslie, I don’t know anything…
Yes, you do. Everyone knows something about something. The great thing about creating and marketing information products is that you don’t need to be an expert. You just need to know more than the average Joe. Or you need a better way to explain something.
Think about the questions you’re asked from friends and family. “How do you keep the deer from eating your tulips?” “How do you work a full-time job and yet keep your home so clean?” “How do you keep your 10-year old car running so well without spending a fortune at the mechanic?” “How did you learn to speak so many languages.” The list of ideas goes on and on. People online pay to learn about cake decorating, playing an instrument, learning a language, saving money, making money, losing weight, getting fit, cooking (fat-free, gluten-free, vegan, etc), and so much more.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, here’s how to make money from information products…
1) Make a list of ideas.
Start by making a list of things you know that others might be interested in knowing too. Do you roast your own coffee beans? Can you feed a family of four on $20 a week? Think about the skills and knowledge you have from work, volunteer positions, daily life, hobbies, and interests. Also consider your achievements. Were you able to get through college without any debt? Have you lost weight or trained for a marathon?
2) Do other people want to know about these ideas?
The next step is determining if there are people who’d pay to learn about your idea. Start by doing a keyword search to learn how many people are researching your idea and what terms they’re using to search. This can give you more ideas to consider. For example, maybe you’ve got an idea about creating an info product around gluten-free eating, but in your search you see some people are researching “gluten-free vegan” or “gluten-free for kids.” Since niched products usually do better than generic ones, you might consider creating your product around one of those.
You also want to use these keywords in searching Google to see what pops up. What websites are in the search results and how do they make money? Are they stores? Blogs? Information products (i.e. books or courses)? It’s okay if there are already others selling your idea. It shows there is a market for it. The trick will be in determining how you can create something different or better.
3) What format will your information product be?
The fastest and easiest type of information product is a text-based one (i.e. ebook, manual etc), but it’s also the one that will earn the least. When determining your format, consider what people need to know and the best way to deliver that information (i.e. text, visuals, video). You should also consider how you’ll distribute it. You can sell an ebook on Amazon and other ebook retailers. You can sell a course through your own site, or use an online platform such as Teachable, which has free and low cost options.
4) Create your product.
Since information products often have a lot of details, make a list of the overall concepts and then within those, list details. For example, in my Work-At-Home Job Course, the major concepts have to do with understanding WAH jobs, creating a resume, where to search, and avoiding scams. Then within each of those areas, I list the specific details I want to cover. When making an ecourse, I also decide the best method of information delivery; text or video.
Writing content and creating an information product can take time. However, there are some ways you can make it a bit easier:
- Interview experts and sell the videos.
- Buy and rewrite Private Label Right (PLR) content. You can get text PLR, as well as full courses with video. However, to be unique, you need to make it your own. PLR allows you to change the content and claim it as your own work.
- Use screen capture to show people what you’re doing on your computer.
- Use your web cam or smartphone to video a lecture or show people how to do something (i.e. decorate a cake).
Be sure that you edit and proof your materials. You’re going to ask people to pay for your product, so it needs to be as professional as possible.
5) Set up your selling system.
Where are you going to make your information product available? You can sell it through your own website, or use another platform, such as Amazon or Teachable. Remember to consider the price you can charge and expense involved in each method. For example, on Amazon, you may not be able to charge as much as you would selling through your own website.
I recommend setting up a funnel system by which you offer some tidbit for free (i.e. the first chapter or first lesson), in exchange for an email address to build an email list. Once people sign up, they can be taken to your full-product sales page. If they don’t buy the full product then, you at least have their email, which you can use to build trust and rapport, and hopefully, sell to them in the future. Not only can you promote your product to your list, but also, you can promote related products. For example, if you’re product is about cake decorating, you can sell your cake decorating product, as well as the tools involved in cake decorating through Amazon’s affiliate program. In fact, you can have links to affiliate products in your information product.
Give it away?…although I don’t advocate giving away your hard work, if your idea involves tutorials and needs tools or services that have affiliate programs, you might consider giving your product away. I’d still use a funnel system by which they need to give you their email to get the product. The product can still make money through the affiliate links, and you can continue to promote offers in the email (Note…you don’t want to only sell in your emails. You also want to offer tips, insights, stories etc).
6) Set up your payment system.
Your distribution choice may have payment processing already included. For example, Amazon and Teachable will take payments and then pay you (usually once a month). If you’re setting up your system through your own website, you can use PayPal or Stripe to take payments. Or you can use a service such as Clickbank, which not only will take care of payments, but also, it will take care of the EU’s VAT tax, and you can set up your own affiliate program.
7) Market your product.
Your information product won’t sell itself. It’s up to you to get it out into the world. There are many ways you can market, including sharing on social media, blogging (for yourself or others), doing podcast or video cast interviews, YouTube, paid ads, and more. What you need to think about is:
- Who is the most likely buyer of my information product?
- Where can they be found? (what social media platforms? What groups? What blogs do they read? etc)
- How can I entice them to check me out (i.e. offer a freebie or use a message that says you can solve a problem).
8) Consider starting an affiliate program.
Not only can you sell items as an affiliate, but you can also set up your own affiliate program by which you pay others who sell your information product. One option is to use ClickBank or another system (i.e. JVZoo, eJunkie) to manage your payment processing. These programs include the option for others to promote your product in exchange for a percentage of the sale. It’s a great way to get others to promote your product for you without your having to pay upfront. Instead, you only pay if a sale is made. Systems like Clickbank actually take care of your affiliate payments for you.
The advantage is that you reach more people and can make more sales. If you make 10 sales on your own, you get to keep 100% of the profits. For a $25 product, that would be $250. But lets say you have 20 affiliates who make 10 sales and earn 50%. That 200 sales at $25, for $5000 in sales, $2500 (50%) of which you keep. Wouldn’t like to have the work of 20 people earning you $2,500 over your own work making $250?
9) Rinse and repeat
Although you can make pretty good money with one product, why not repeat the process and make more? An easy way to add to your information line, is to add related products. Using the gluten-free idea, you can make one product for gluten-free vegan, and then make another for gluten-free for kids, or gluten-free desserts. If you’re building an email list (which you should), you can promote these new products to them. If they found value in your first product, chances are they’ll buy your next products.
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