Without one you can’t make money. Now, as an affiliate marketer you can “borrow” someone’s product, promote it and make money, but there’s great power in having your own product and doing a product launch.
You might have heard about the big guys earning millions of dollars in a launch or a whole million in 24 hours.
Yes, the potential is huge, but you won’t get there without practice. You need to get started and create your first product.
How I Got Started Creating Products
I got my start in the self-improvement niche. I had a partner and we decided to launch a product.
Long story short the product was a complete failure.
We had a vision too big for our abilities. We didn’t even manage to create a proper members area for buyers to access. I guess that was the main reason the product failed. We made 9 sales and everyone refunded.
The only good thing about the product was that we built a list of two or three thousand subscribers. When you have a product people are much more willing to promote you.
Better, But Not The Best
After a year or so, when we forgot how miserably we have failed, we decided to create a second product.
The product was a success and not because of some big JV launch that we did, but because of our list. By that time we already had a list of around 20k subscribers so, we just started promoting the product and we made sales and a lot of them. I think we have made at least a couple hundred sales.
The key points why our second product did so much better were the price – we sold it for just $7. Also, the product was high value. No one was selling something similar this cheap and this time we didn’t screw up the members area. We also made the product our one time offer after someone opt-ins to our email list, which also made us a lot of sales.
At the end of our partnership we were working on a third product, but we split the roads before it got finished…
Internet Marketing Products
After the partnership had ended, I started working alone on the internet marketing niche. I quickly found a mentor, who taught me how to create and launch products properly.
I started working on a simple product, where I laid down all the traffic strategies that I knew. It took me quite some time to put everything together, including two upsells. I had everything in place only the sales page was left and then we realized there’s a problem.
The problem that I faced was that in internet marketing niche you need to show proof of results (leads that you got, sales that you made etc.) that you got following what’s inside your product. If you don’t have any results to show then you will have a hard time selling the product.
I still ended up selling 9 copies, but I didn’t do a launch, because there was no unique selling point for my product.
My First Real Product Launch
So, after I figured out that my first product was no good, I thought of a new idea. The product now had a unique selling point and was ready to get launched.
The product was about Facebook advertising. I was getting results with Facebook ads that I could show off on a sales page as proof that my product works.
My mentor helped me out with a lot of things: creating JV pages, writing sales letters, putting the whole funnel together etc.
And then I started preparing for the launch. Contacting people to get on board to promote. It was a hard task to do, because I didn’t know any people in the niche.
Anyway the launch was a minor success. Me and my launch partners made 39 front end sales and a couple of back end sales. It’s fun to see making sales of your own product, though I didn’t make a lot of money from the launch, because I was giving away 100% commissions to the partners, but I built a list of a hundred or two hundred freebie seekers and a list of 20 buyers. As they say a buyer is worth ten times more than a freebie seeker.
The Lessons Learnt From All These Products
I didn’t want to write all the long and boring stories of how every single product was created and how the lessons came to me. So, it’s better that I just list them out in an easy to follow manner.
Make It Easy To Access
Make your members are as simple as possible. If you want to make it secure, put a password or require people to register, but if you aren’t sure how to do that, then don’t do it. Chances are, if it’s your first product you won’t make more than 50 sales and no one is even going to think about stealing it so, you shouldn’t worry.
Even when you have everything in order, a portion of your buyers aren’t going to try to access the product. So, making it stupid simple to access is a must.
When we were creating our first product we created huge obstacles for customers to access the product. They basically had to email us to get the password. How wrong were we thinking that people were going to do that.
Start With A Cheap Price Point
If it’s your first product launch I recommend creating a $7 to $17 product. The more expensive the product, the harder it’s to sell it and the higher the refund rate is going to be.
Our first product was $47. Even with a lot of traffic coming to our site we only managed to get a few sales and when they saw that the product is some crappy PLR mix they refunded.
So, with a low price point you will get more customers that you can monetize later. Also, fewer people are going to refund even if your product isn’t that good. Once you have that first low ticket product you can then think about ways how to increase your income by adding a higher ticket product.
Never Ever Use Unedited PLR Products
PLR stands for Private Label Rights. These are products created by someone else, but they give away the rights to resell them and edit them, they usually come with salespages etc.
A huge huge mistake is to sell them as they are. If you want to use PLR’s you need to edit them a whole lot, usually it’s best to use them as addition to your own content.
If you don’t edit anything about the product then you will have a lot of competition, because usually tons of people have the same PLR products and everyone is trying to sell it.
Ideally you want to create the product yourself.
Build Relationships With People In Your Market
Launching a product is so much easier when you have relationships with other marketers. Now, you won’t be close friends with everyone, but just knowing the person is a good start, because when the time comes to promote your launch they will be more likely to listen to your pitch and promote for you.
Approaching cold won’t get you good results unless you have a phenomenal product. So, it’s better to work on building relationships, but how do you build them?
Well, you can join marketing groups on Facebook, Skype or Google+, be active there and befriend others or you can promote the products of other marketers and then they will be more likely to reciprocate, but you can’t do that without a list.
VSL or a Sales Letter
For me shooting a video is easier than writing. Also, it’s said that VSLs (video sales letters) convert 3 times higher than regular sales letters. I haven’t split tested it myself so, don’t quote me on this.
Now, does this mean that you should only create VSLs? Not at all, though a high quality VSL outperforms a regular sales letter, it doesn’t mean that yours will, because you might not have the speaking skills or the skills to write great copy.
I would say start with what’s seems easier for you, but don’t forget to test them both.
One Product One Solution
The big mistake that I did with my first IM product was that I tried to appeal to a very huge part of the market, but that ended up me having to create a different product, because I couldn’t find a unique selling point.
First I started out by creating a product how to promote a blog, but then added general stuff about generating traffic and the result turned out very poor.
What I should have done was to create a product either about blog promotion or about traffic generation, but not two in one.
So, be very specific what your product does and who is it for, don’t try to put everything that you know in one product, stick with one topic.
Capture Leads From Your Sales Letter With An Exit Popup
This was an idea suggested by my mentor and it’s a great one. If I hadn’t put the exit pop up on my sales page, I wouldn’t have built a list of several hundred people.
Having an exit popup is crucial, because only 1 to 5 % of people are going to buy and all the others are going to exit. If you manage to pull a big launch you will have tons of people sending traffic to your sales page and you definitely don’t want to waste it all.
So, put an exit pop-up on your sales page and capture the people on a separate email list. Create an email sequence where you give away more content and then try to sell the product again.
Give Generous Commissions
When you are new and don’t have many connections, your best bet for attracting JV’s is to create a great product and give generous commissions for its promotion.
For my internet marketing products I was giving away 100% commissions for the front end product and 50% throughout the whole funnel.
Now, you might ask how do I make money, if I’m practically giving everything away to the JV’S? Well, you make a little bit of money from the upsells, but the big bucks come from building a list of buyers as well as freebie seekers.
You Don’t Need a Huge Budget
A limiting belief that a lot of people have, which stops them from launching a product is that it will cost a lot of money. Well, it can, if you are going to outsource the copy writing, sales page design etc.
Yet if you don’t have the money you can create everything yourself and the cost can be a big fat zero.
For the two of my internet marketing products the out of pocket cost was only for hosting and the domain name for which I was already paying. I did everything myself. Can’t say it was perfect, but I still made sales.
How about the merchant costs? Well, I have used JVZoo.com which is a free platform. You can set up as many products as you want, without paying a single cent out of pocket. You will only pay a percentage of your profits.
I personally think that this model of publishing when you don’t pay upfront, only when you make sales, is going to become more and more popular. Amazon is doing that with their ebook publishing platform and I think more companies are going to use the same model.
You Don’t Need A Revolutionary New Idea To Create A Product
That’s another limiting belief that people have, including me. I thought there’s no point in creating something that isn’t unique, because no one is going to buy.
The Facebook advertising product that I launched wasn’t something revolutionary. It was a strategy I learnt from another product long time ago and I just added some insights of my own and I made sales.
So, don’t underestimate your knowledge and your product ideas. Sure, you will have much better results, if you create something new, software or a strategy that no one is using, but it’s not necessary to be successful.
So, don’t wait for that revolutionary new idea to come to your mind. Think for a few minutes, if I had to create the best product that I can what would it be? And then start working on it. Sure your first product launch might not be a huge success, the second one as well, but with every single product that you create you will get better and better.
You will have more business connections, you will have a bigger list, you will have a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t and all that will help you make a better launch.
You can make a lot of money doing product launches, but if you won’t start then you won’t. These days there aren’t many reasons why you couldn’t do a product launch, you can do everything yourself and it won’t cost you a dime. With every single product you will get better and make more money, soon enough you will be playing with the big guys.