Passive income is one of those words that makes the ears and wallets of coaches and consultants perk up. The fantasy is that they will create an ebook, tell everyone on Facebook about their ebook, and then sit back and wait for the sales to come in. They get so caught up with the idea of creating a product to sell, they often overlook the foundational elements that need to be in place in order to actually sell their products.
Before you invest time and money in creating products that you plan to sell online or from the stage, you want to be clear about:
- Your VIPs (very interested prospects).
- What results they really want.
- The best way to package your content to help them get results.
Without knowing those three things, you are heading for a very costly mistake. And that’s whether you are creating products or not. In an online world where there is so much competition for attention, your offerings need to be clear, results-based, and easily accessible. Just because you can create 21 video clips on how to organize your workspace, doesn’t mean you should do it. You want to make sure your content is user friendly or your audience won’t buy and they won’t buy into you.
Once you are clear about who you serve, what they most want, and how you can deliver your expertise to them, then you are ready to create profitable products and programs. Let’s say you have well designed, engaging product that will help your clients get results. No matter how great your product is, you will still need to market it. Remember: passive income requires active marketing.
Strategy #1: Get people to subscribe to your email list.
Your products are not magic wands. You won’t attract thousands of buyers just because you finally decided to package your expertise. Your email list is the audience that will buy from you, not first time visitors to your site that don’t really know you and the results you are able to help them get. Don’t be that brilliant coach or consultant that created a brilliant product but got her feelings crushed because she didn’t have anyone to sell it to.
Strategy #2: Have an outstanding opt-in offer to entice them to subscribe to your list.
Having a bland generic sign up box that says, “Enter your name and get my newsletter.” is not a way to entice people to subscribe to your list. It’s similar to a guy trying to pick up dates at a bar and using bad one liners: It’s not attractive! If you want to attract quality leads (that’s what your email list is really about) then you need to have a quality offer. An offer that helps them solve an immediate problem and that showcases your expertise. With all the other things competing for my attention online, the only way I am going to give my email address to someone is if I truly want what they are offering and think they can help me. Just telling me I’ll get your newsletter doesn’t tell me how you can help me.
Strategy #3: Follow up with your leads.
People that subscribe to your email list are leads. Leads that you want to turn into very interested prospects (VIPs). If they have taken the time to subscribe to your list, then it’s up to you to take the time to follow up with them. This is where your email autoresponder comes into play. Before you start sending your newsletter, you want to create a series of follow up messages that allow your new subscribers to get to know you. Those messages should connect the dots between your outstanding opt-in offer and either your free consultation or an entry level offer. I teach an entire workshop on creating a Bankable Autoresponder Series. Another thing to consider: having the right technology is just as important as having the right content. My favorite is email service provider is GetResponse (Aweber, Mailchimp and Campaign Monitor are top autoresponder services)). You do not want to use your Gmail account or the email inbox attached to the hosting account you have from GoDaddy. You want a system that lets you track who opens your messages and what they click on.
Bonus Strategy: Borrow someone else’s list
It can take time to build a quality email list to sell your products to. A shortcut is to find partners who will promote your products their list. There are some people who will share it for you out of the kindness of their hearts. There are richer people who will share your products as an affiliate. Affiliates get a percentage of each sale they make. It might seem odd to pay affiliates 20%-50% “commission, but if they generate 200 sales for you, 80% – 50% those sales is better you struggling to make 25 sales without a list. You can use a system like eJunkie or JVzoo to help manage your affiliate program. There are even some shopping cart systems like Infusionsoft and 1Shopping Cart that have built in affiliate modules.
Recap: The key to generating passive income is an active email. The best way to an active email list is to attract the right subscribers with an outstanding opt-in offer and have follow-up messages that help convert them from subscribers to true VIPs (very interested prospects).