Need a little extra in your pocket? Consider creating digital products.
There’s never been a better time. With layoffs in the news, it’s time to make money where you can.
Consider joining the creator economy, and create stuff to sell.
Create small digital products, until you’re sure you have buyers
Avoid spending months creating a wonderful product that doesn’t sell. Start by creating itty bitty “taster”, or “starter” products until you’re certain of the demand.
Additionally, make it easy on yourself. Think about things you can create, that no one else can.
1. Focus on digital products YOU can create
With millions of creators selling products, emphasize your authenticity—create unique products, with your expertise, and from your point of view. Capitalize on what you have.
That may be:
- A blog you’ve spent years on. It gets little traffic, so you consider it a dud. Not so fast: you may have the seeds of dozens of products which will be fun and fast to create.
- Your day job, or a previous day job. Although you hated every minute you spent as a (fill in the blank), you learned a lot. Would others pay for your expertise as a sales associate, budget analyst, or real estate photographer?
- Expertise in parenting. Products about kids and pets sell.
If you’re a self-publishing author, you’re already creating ebooks and print books. What if you sold them from your own website, as well as in online book stores?
Make them special. Add checklists, journals, and current info to turn your nonfiction books into products.
2. Look for inexpensive, or free creation tools
You can create PDFs from Google Docs, and quality images from the free version of Canva. Minimize costs as much as possible, until you’re certain that your digital product will sell.
Buffer has an excellent list of tools, some free or with low-cost options.
3. Free promotions: yes, you can still promote for free
Focus on social media for low-cost promotions. Despite the networks promoting their advertising options, you can still promote for free. Although it costs time, it’s worth it. You’ll need to be consistent, and look for opportunities.
Creating B2B digital products? (That is, for businesses and people.) Check out LinkedIn as a social media gem you may not have considered.
When you’re using the networks, avoid cutting and pasting the same messages and captions. Each network has a subtly different tone, so aim to match the tone, while remaining authentically you.
If you’re writing promotional blog posts on your own blog, post them widely, to sites like Medium, Quora, and other well-trafficked sites which offer a blogging option.
4. Got a hit? If you’re making sales, capitalize on your success
An author, who’s a friend, self-published a novel in 2015 which did well—more than well, because she managed to create a new genre.
I assumed that she’d capitalize on her sales success, by creating a series of some kind as a follow up. Alternatively, she’d write more in her new genre.
Then I moved, and we lost touch. When I chatted with her last year, she said she’d given up self-publishing. Why didn’t she create a series?
Her response was that she hadn’t thought about it. Her little boy became ill. By the time he recovered, she’d forgotten her novel. She said: “I thought self-publishing was too much trouble.”
A success, even a small one, is a huge accomplishment. Follow up on it as soon as you can. Got a small product? Create intermediate, and advanced digital products of it.
Turn the initial product into a free lead magnet, to promote your bigger products. (Or keep it as your starter product.)
Pay attention to your numbers. Ask buyers what appealed to them, and stay in touch with them, using a mailing list.
Be original: create digital products which reflect YOU and your experience
There’s only one of you, and no one else has had your life, or your experiences. Make the most of them, and start creating today.
Creativity is essential for writers.
In this book release your creativity to unlock your imagination and build the writing career of your dreams.More info →
You're a writer. You need to make money from your words. What if you could create AND sell a nonfiction book in just a day?
This book will show you how to think outside the box, get creative — and SELL what you create. Making money from your writing can be a real challenge, especially if you're limiting yourself to trading hours for dollars. When you get paid by the hour, even if you're making $200 an hour, you're limited.More info →
Copywriter and marketing pro Angela Booth maintains a busy copywriting and ghostwriting practice. Fascinated by online marketing, she wrote one of the first business books for internet marketing, published by Allen & Unwin. She’s been an enthusiastic blogger since the late 1990s.