7 Myths About Creating and Selling Information Products
Myth #1: Nobody buys this stuff. It’s all about eBooks
It’s true that if you only sell an eBook on your website, very few people will pay a high price for it. At one time (let’s say ten years ago) that may have been the case, but thanks to Amazon and Kindle, those days are over.
However, if you package your information product in a way that has a high-perceived value AND you sell it using the right system, people will gladly pay your price.
If you ever tried and failed to sell an information product online, I guarantee your product was subpar and your system was inadequate. I hate to say it but that’s the truth.
Too many people try to slap something together an information product, and think they can pawn it off to the general public and will make a lot of money. That’s just not going to happen.
Information products that sell and bring in lots of money have a high perceived value. In addition, they have a sophisticated marketing system in place.
Most information products online are cheaply and hastily put together hoping to make a quick buck. At one time this may have worked, but today you need to up your game.
To compete in this competitive market, you need to offer a little bit more than just an eBook. You need to offer audios, videos, applications, calculators, self-evaluation worksheets , and so on.
Here is a quick list of what you need to include in your information product if you want to sell for a high price:
Ink on Paper / Text on Screen (a.k.a. PDFs)
- Tip sheets
- Tests and quizzes
- Books (eBooks)
- Back issues of newsletters or reports
- Boxed set of books (bundle)
- Set of cards (recipe cards, flash cards, reminder cards)
- Transcripts from speeches or seminars
- Posters/infographics (diagrams)
- Multi-author publications (several authors for one publication)
- Forms (time keeping, weight loss, step by step processes, workout sheet)
Audios (MP3’s, streaming)
- Interviews, conversations, roundtable discussions
- How-to instructions
- Collections of Podcasts
- Subliminal, motivational, self-hypnosis, visualization
- Live recorded speeches, seminars, teleseminars, consultations
- Follow along instruction guide
Videos (MP4’s, streaming)
- Live-recorded speeches, seminars, consultations
- Interviews, conversations, roundtable discussions
- Interactive/instructional with workbook
- Screencasts—demonstrations, instructional, PowerPoint
- Google hangout recordings
Interactive (mobile/desktop applications)
- Desktop applications—calorie counter, time management calendar,
- Mobile applications—memory improvement, yoga exercises, gratitude journal
Naturally, you don’t have to include all of these. You just pick a few from each pile. In my free information kit on How to Make $12,017 Every Month by Leveraging Your eBook The Right Way there is a detailed section on how to create these.
Myth #2: People Don’t Make Any Money with Information Products
This isn’t the case. The reason why so many people don’t make money with information products is because they view making these products as some kind of get-rich-quick scheme. And I don’t blame them considering there are so many so called “gurus” tell the unsuspecting public that any moron can put one together.
This gives the industry a bad name. I’m not saying you need to be a genius, but you need to be able to string two sentences together if you really want your information product to have a shot at making sales.
Myth #3: There is so much free information out there no one is going to buy these products.
Also, you need to consider how the whole sales process of selling an information product works. Information products are not sold on big shopping sites like Amazon where people can see a bunch of low priced competitors.
Information products are often sold through a sales funnel where the buyer is taken along a sales process. At that point in the sales process, the customer has tunnel vision and is not looking at any other options.
Also, your customer will value something that he or she pays for. If you want your customer to actually consume your product, then it’s in your best interest to make it a higher price than just an eBook.
Myth #4: You won’t have to learn anything new
This simply isn’t the case for most people who want to create an information product. You will need some knowledge about the subject you are creating.
While you can get some ghost writer to write your materials, you will still need to be some kind of expert in your field to make a truly profitable product. This is why established speakers and coaches are in the best position to create a highly profitable information product.
This is not to say that you have to be a total expert, but you will have to brush on your knowledge and expertise if you want to people to buy your information product.
Myth #5: You won’t have to learn any new skills
While somethings are getting a lot easier—like putting up a website—you still have to learn some new skills such as: PPC advertising, sales copywriting and funnel development.
The good news is that you can easily outsource each one of these tasks to make your job easier. And the best way to fast track your success is to hire a personal mentor or coach to help you along.
This is not to mislead you. It takes a lot of work to create an information product that will sell. The reason whey so many information products fail is because people don’t take the time to learn the necessary skills to make a successful launch.
Myth #6: Creating an information product won’t cost you any money
A lot of information product gurus (or better known as scammers) will tell you that creating an information product won’t cost you any money. These people either have no experience and don’t know what they are talking about, or they are flat out lying.
Creating any kind of product—whether it’s a factory widget or an information product—will cost you some money to develop. The good news is that once developed, the delivery of your information product is about as close to zero as you can get—provided your product is an all-digital product and not something you are sending through the mail.
Also, the cost of development will be much cheaper than if you were to create a physical product. Getting a physical product produced will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars or at least high five figures. An information product on the other hand can be produced for less than ten thousand dollars, and in some cases, for less than five thousand.
But saying that a quality information product can be produced for less than a thousand or a few hundred dollars is just not a reality. And there are many scammers who make that promise. If your product did cost you less than a thousand dollars, it’s probably not a very good product.
In order for your information product to sell for more than a hundred dollars, you’ll want to include professionally edited audio, video and digital applications.
Myth #7: Any idiot can create and sell an information product
While there have been plenty of savvy internet and direct marketers who have made untold millions by creating a simple information product, they weren’t educated in the traditional sense. They didn’t graduate from or go to college.
They didn’t need to. There were already savvy enough to make money without a formal education, but by all means, they were not idiots.
Unfortunately, that’s not how aggressive information marketers promote their services. They claim that any idiot can create a simple website, and they will make millions of dollars soon after. That simply isn’t true.
You need to have a knack for the internet and selling. You need to be highly educated about the product you are developing and selling. You need to be aware of direct marketing principles.
I wrote this post because there seems to be another gold rush to sites like Udemy where you can create a course and sell it. This only exacerbates the problem.
They make it look easy. And the more people that slap something together and put it on Udemy, the more people are going to be in the way. This will drive your prices down just like they did on Amazon.
This post isn’t meant to discourage you from developing your own information product. It is to give you the honest truth about creating an information product.
Selling an information product is great, but you need to be aware of the reality. It’s not easy.
Ash Waechter is a direct response copywriter who helps small businesses sell more products and services online. He also writes SEO copy for attracting readers from around the web.