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The Informational Product Dream
Imagine receiving the following e mail on a rainy Thursday morning –
“Hi, I downloaded your book about XXXX last week on my Kindle and I could not put it down. Can we speak today or tomorrow as I want you to come in and train 100 of our brightest young people? And I want to arrange for your book to be the set text for that course.”
That is what happened earlier this year. The people he mentioned in the note were extremely bright young professionals and the book (which has over 100 mini exercises in was used before, during and after the course.) It was an extraordinary and encouraging way to experience the power of informational products and just how directly they can impact you as an independent trainer in establishing and growing your business.
What else can a book or digital download or film do for you? Philip Kotler the marketing Guru talks of the ever increasing need for “touches” and encounters to promote trust before any commercial business can begin. He gives the example of driving past an advertising hording or billboard. You don’t buy the soap power on the Monday – it is the 15th time your drive by that something sticks. We need multiple exposures to material before it sinks in.
So products are 1. An Encounter Generation Machine.
- Credo – In the past the most expensive part of your day was talking with people who may or may not become your customers – If they don’t share your values nothing will transpire. If they have a lesser ethical standard, you will not want to work with them. If they are not bright enough to digest your material it will never work out. A product puts your stake in the ground and will attract the best and discourage the rest.
- Qualify in or Qualify out – The single most important use of products can be to qualify out people who do not have the money, signing power, need or time from what you have to offer. You are a premium independent training provider and they may be bargain basement. You offer value and they need a quick cheap fix. You want volume, they think small. It is easy to build the BANT test into any product – BANT is the criteria for commercial success. Your target must have the Budget, Authority to sign, Need and the Timing must be right.
- Speaking, Training, Coaching, Consulting & Writing – Products generate commercial opportunities all the time. When I finished my second book with my wife, she posted a picture of the cover on LinkedIn. One hour later a Germany publishing house e-mailed her to talk about commissioning a book from her and, a week later, the contract was signed. Do you begin to see the power of products?
What are these Informational Products?
An informational product is any standalone vessel carrying your wisdom that is sold or given away in the promotion of business or the development and education of your “tribe.”
Book – An e product or paper version of your main messages (electric and wood have different uses.)
Audio – We used to call them CD’s. Downloads that play on your iPad or phone and turn your train / car / plane into a university.
Film – This is the one. Technology has just got easier (more in a minute.) Now you can make digital feature length films that really hit home. Believe me, there is a truck-load of professional credibility to be acquire by becoming a “film maker.”
On-Line Course – This is the rain-maker – Well made high impact courses sold at the right price and distributed globally via modern technology can make a serious difference to your independent training business turn-over.
But isn’t it all just so technically complicated?
Not any more – When I first made podcasts in 2008 it was probably easier to send a man to the moon. Now it is about press and record, edit, add tags, captions and blurb and press to upload to your on-line shop.
In our Consultative Selling Bootcamp run in Amsterdam this summer, I had everybody write and record their first podcast – The whole exercise for the class took less than one hour!
(Do feel free to call if you wish to talk more about this exciting area of development and marketing that really can make an swift impact for the new and not so new independent trainer – +44 7540 65 9995.)
Technology is now so clever that you don’t have to be. A £100 app will do most of the work for you whether that is screen capture software to make a DVD, word recognition software to help you start writing, or a simple podcast app to get you recording, today.
For more ideas on how establish and grow your Independent Trainer Business we invite you to join us for the Independent Trainer Consultative Selling Webinar 3 – GOING FOR GROWTH, on 5th October 2016, 6PM London time, 7PM Paris time. Register now at;
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A little Marketing magic goes a long way
The word marketing can make us dizzy with its many different meanings – and no one should claim to understand them all.
For the purposes of this short and pithy post, marketing refers to the information you put out there in the web-o-sphere (technical term) to influence and inform your potential customer base of your offering, your persona and the value of your work to them.
Coffee to Sex and Marriage
BTW – this is the first rule of marketing – be as provocative as you dare to grab people’s attention – if they don’t read you, you don’t exist for them.
The phrase “coffee to sex” refers to the pathway of engagement. At each stage there is an appropriate interaction for them to expect from you or for you to offer to them. Mess that up and you end up looking foolish.
Trust based communication
Linked the pathway of engagement is the trust ladder. If I am low on your trust ladder I cannot ask you for much. If we are both high on the trust ladder we can exchange value for mutual gain – this is witnessed in the exchange of ethical and sustainable business.
“Know, Like & Trust”
The social media marketing guru, Penny Power OBE, coined the phrase and wrote a book describing how a consumer of information behaves and what they need to receive in order to become a healthy, happy and profitable customer of yours.
*Know – Here we move the unsuspecting prospect from a position of not knowing you exist to knowing that you both exist and have something to say that they need to hear. You also need to grasp the audience’s attention. Your well expressed purpose in a punchy headline will normally work a treat. (See the previous post 2. on Identity.)
*Like – Now you get the chance to express your wonderful and warm personality in print, via video and in person so that the audience can fall in like with you and see your true and authentic self. Being funny, offering wise insights, providing stories that entertain and inform – all add to the emotion of liking you.
*Trust – Trust is a real thing – ABI – Ability, Benevolence and Integrity – You top the charts when you consistently demonstrate your depth of knowledge with solutions and skills that match your promise. When you over deliver with kindness and a positive attitude you will be perceived as benevolent. And, when you keep your word, under-promise and over-deliver you will gain a tick in the integrity box as well.
The Secret of Sequencing
Putting the various marketing communications together whilst sticking to the pathway of engagement and incrementally building awareness and trust is the magic formula that will result in an enriching flow of incoming new business enquiries.
For more ideas on how to establish and grow your Independent Trainer Business we invite you to our Independent Trainer Consultative Selling BOOTCAMP – GOING FOR GROWTH, on 6th April 2019 – Basel, Switzerland. Call Matthew on +44 7540 65 9995
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