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Information Products (LinkedIn for Job Seekers, etc.) Is My Ninth Revenue Stream

February 13th, 2009
Every Friday I’m sharing each of my ten revenue streams. With this post I only have 4 left (this is #6 of 10). I’m big on diversifying personal income, whether you are an entrepreneur or an employee. My intention with this series is to inspire or encourage you with your own diverse revenue streams. Below this post you’ll see links to the previous posts, or you can click on the Multiple Streams of Income category on the left.

I had to wait to announce this one for a while because I was still putting it together, however I suspect this will be a considerable revenue stream.  In my post on Consulting as a revenue stream I said that YOU ARE AN EXPERT IN SOMETHING, and I hope that this post helps you understand how you might be able to capitalize on your expertise.  There are some grand differences between consulting and having information products, as you’ll be able to determine from this post.  I’ll use the first new product as an example.

I should mention two things:

  1. I have already had information products available for quite some time on the JibberJobber CEO page (CEO because YOU are the CEO of YOU, Inc.!).  They were recordings I did and sold online, but I didn’t push them much because I didn’t have fancy graphics, nor did I have squeeze pages (which I think are annoying), nor did I fully understand how I was going to distribute them.  Alas, I think the products are awesome, especially the Write Your Book webinar as well as the Blog Marketing 201 – 501 webinar.  I’ll be updating both of those.
  2. My vision of how to do information Products was greatly expanded by my participating in chapter meetings of the National Speakers Association, and for that I’m indebted to Marc Wolfsfeld, who invited me to come to my first meeting (and who has shared great ideas with me throughout the months I’ve gotten to know him better).

Let’s get back to this revenue stream, Information Products.  To get this up and running I had to bring in help.  My videos are good, but I wanted to make them better (and for a future product, I have to make them better).  So I hired a full-time video editor.  I know, however, that you don’t have to have a full-time editor, or even have video, to have products.  If you have expertise, you can create a product TODAY, and have it ready to sell TODAY.  How?  Either record an audio presentation (there are a billion ways to do that), or get the 30 day trial of GoToMeeting and spend the next 30 days recording your visual presentation – it’s as easy as that!  I’ll share some thoughts about Information Products in the framework of Marketing’s Four P’s:

Product

The difference between a product like this and a service like consulting is the scalability.  Ask anyone who consults for a living and one of their concerns is how to create revenue without putting in the hours (how do I get an hour of billing without doing an hour of work?).

That’s the beauty of a product – I can sell 1 or 1,000 or 1,000,000 and, if I have a good system, it won’t matter.  I’m sure if I get to the 1M mark, I’ll have a very different system than if I had 10 sales, but I can still scale the sales… even to a billion (in theory).

I have had to come to terms with the idea that this product can’t be crap.  As the creator of my webinars, I’m very concerned about the quality… something to lose sleep over for sure.  However, I’ve also realized that if I over-concern myself about creating the perfect product, I’ll never get it done.  Sometimes you have to just hit the “record” button and start.

Here’s a funny thing about LinkedIn for Job Seekers… many of you may know that I do not like to script things – I like a good bullet-point list to work from, and then just wing it.  But on this series I had to script, WORD FOR WORD, each of the sessions.  The one time I didn’t do that, I had to re-record until I finally did it.

Price

How much are you worth?  I can’t answer that for you.  Pricing your product is tough – that’s why there’s the Professional Pricing Society (no kidding)!  Here are three considerations on pricing my products:

  1. I am an expert, and therefore, should command a higher price. Because of my books, my speaking, and my experience in the last three years, I think I’m qualified to be an expert in this space.  Of course, having others say I’m the LinkedIn expert helps considerably :p  Too many professionals think what they do is easy, and price themselves way too low.
  2. I can’t price myself out of the market, if I want to sell a lot (or make a lot). If I charge $500 to individuals for LinkedIn for Job Seekers, how many sales do you think I’ll make?  I agree (none).
  3. Many products like this go for around $100 (which I think is too much, especially for a job seeker). I was in an internet marketing mastermind group and was asked how much my ebook sold for.  “$11.95,” I responded.  They all thought I was nuts, and that I should sell it for $80+.  There is some weird phenomenon online where people are selling their products for a lot more than I’d pay … I think it depends on WHO the prospect is – a job seeker vs a company = different pricing thoughts.

I’ve decided to price LinkedIn for Job Seekers at $59.95, which includes shipping and handling (the final product is a DVD, since the files are way too big to download)… for the next month I’ll offer it for $49.95 since it won’t be shipping until mid-March (so prepurchase it and save $10).

Promotion

Promoting my JibberJobber CEO webinars was done halfway, as I wasn’t quite sure how to really sure how I would run that side of the business.  But it’s a solid revenue stream now and with my video editor, and my DVD plans, and my marketing plan in place, I’m ready to get behind it.

I will beef up my JibberJobber CEO page, but I’ll also have other places where I’ll communicate the information (including affiliates (I’ll announce that later) and JibberJobber Partners).  I’ll also put information about my products in my newsletters (my monthly newsletter hasn’t gone out for 9 months!  It will go out as soon as we get some mail server stuff worked out), and I’ll look at some traditional advertising.

They key here, as I mentioned in my First Revenue Stream post, is that marketing and sales is a substantial, significant part of the success of this revenue stream.  I’ve seen crap products fly off the shelf, while awesome stuff just sits there.  Making sales leads to success, not making an excellent product.  Again, I’m sensitive to the quality of my product because I want to have strong reputation of having excellent stuff.

Placement

This has always been an awkward “P” for me, since most of my stuff has always been on the word wide web.  So perhaps I’m interpreting this wrong, but a lot of “placement” will be on the websites I mentioned in the Promotion section above.

I’ll also have an inventory at my office and in my laptop bag, so that I’m always ready to deliver a DVD if someone wants it.  What am I missing here?

Helpful information?  If you have an information product, have purchased one, or want to have one, what do you think makes it successful?  Share thoughts or ideas below :)

Here is a breakdown of the revenue streams I’ve shared so far:

Kristen Jacoway works with highly motivated professionals in leveraging career marketing services that utilizes the innovative methodology of the REACH 1-2-3 SuccessTM personal branding program. Her program includes a career marketing portfolio and online identity services through a highly collaborative partnership with clients. She has organized teleseminars/webinars that focuses on personal branding, job search strategies, interview skills, and resume development. JibberJobber customers can receive a 10% discount on the personal branding, job search, interview skills, and resume workshop. Enter coupon code CDCJIBBERJOBBER10 in the coupon field at checkout. Learn more at http://www.careerdesigncoach.com

10 Comments »

10 responses to “Information Products (LinkedIn for Job Seekers, etc.) Is My Ninth Revenue Stream”

  1. So books you write could be considered a sub-category of “information products”?

  2. […] If you haven’t followed my “multiple streams of income” posts, you might be interested in this one. […]

  3. Jason Alba says:

    @Sophie – great question – when I wrote my 10 revenue streams I broke out the Happy About books because of the arrangement I have with them. If I do non-Happy About books then they will fall in this ninth stream, as will a few other DVD series (in the plans right now).

    One big differentiation is that these are, for the most part, MINE, whereas those are Happy About’s (and I get a royalty).

  4. Thanks again for sharing such great information so openly.

    I read some statistics from an information marketer that stated:

    To sell a product over the internet:

    If 100 people read about it – 0 will buy.
    1,000 – 2 will buy
    10,000 – 20 will buy
    100,000 – 200 will buy
    1,000,000 – 2,0000 will buy.

    Is that your experience as well? If so, anyone selling a product primarily over the web will have a lot of upfront visibility building to do before they begin to market. It all sounds overwhelming.

  5. Jason Alba says:

    Kim, where do you get those numbers?

    I heard that .5% is successful in a “freemium” model, as I talked about last week on my user upgrade revenue stream… I’m not sure on something like a one-time sale… but those numbers don’t seem right to me.

    Of course, my experience is with a lower-priced product (my Happy About books). This is 2.5 times the price.

    Also, I have marketed those products in front of the people who are more likely to buy them… so there are two factors (price and audience) that I think have a profound impact on the conversion rate …

  6. Kim Avery says:

    Hi Jason,

    Andy O’Bryan published those numbers in his article ‘List Building for Coaches.’ He says that his averages are rough estimates based on his own experience. He does encourage increasing certain success ingredients to improve those statistics, but they still seemed a bit discouraging.

    No doubt, there are many unmeasurable variables that come into play in each unique circumstance.

    I am glad to hear that your experience is better than that.

  7. Kathy says:

    Hey, Jason,

    Thank you for sharing ways you are building diverse streams of revenue. You could keep it all to yourself, but I enjoy your generosity in sharing it with your fellow careerists and others. I am always read these posts with great interest. Lots of great ideas — and by sharing them you help others get ideas for their business or practice.

  8. Ron Jones says:

    Hi Jason,

    Did you encounter any legal issues in becoming an expert on LinkedIn? I consider myself an expert in a certain product, and I really like your ideas. Say I make a video presentation of how to use this complex product. It seems this could bring about legal concerns

    Also, since it would be a revenue source, would a business license be required?

    Thanks,
    Ron

  9. Nancy B says:

    I respond to placements of these kinds of products in Newsletters from authors and instructors. Are you thinking of expansing your ‘One Thing’ brand to the other areas (LinkedIn, Facebook, CEO)? That would seem like a great way to promote nuggets from the DVD’s and drive purchase.

  10. Douglas says:

    If you compare the revenue stream from Information Products and the revenue stream from consulting services, which one would you say to be more rewarding? I guess it depends on product, but in general.

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