Goal: Learn 6 ways to stand out in the crowd with your next information product.
Begin with the End In Mind
How do you hook your customer/student so that they are ready to take action by the end of your product? Begin with the end in mind.
Most of the eBooks and Information products I read start with the authors story. This is good to gain credibility and empathy for the author. However, what does this do for the reader? It is a sales technique but is it really an effective one?
Would a better sales technique be to paint a picture of what the person who bought the product (your customer/student) will have at the end of the eBook or Information Product? Painting a great picture that the customer/student can envision themselves in will cause them to fully participate in the entire book.
Then you can tell your story to gain empathy.
Tell a Story
How do we learn? We learn by associating what we previously have known with new information.
How do you paint a picture? Tell a story with your customer/student as the main character. Then you can tell another story about you. Maybe link the two stories together, now you are in this together, working as one toward a common goal.
Once you have painted the picture with your opening story you can continue to follow the story through the entire program teaching concepts in story form. It is much easier for the human brain to retain information this way.
Include a Workbook (That is not Fill In The Blank!)
How do you get your customer/student to take action? Include something for them to do immediately while going through your program.
A workbook is a great way to do this. It is actionable, immediate, and can be very simple. Sometimes very simple actions lead to more actions and eventually lead to the customer/student taking action on their own.
It is a matter of confidence. Many of us don’t take action because we tell ourselves a story about how we don’t know what to do. The real reason is that we are not confident in our abilities.
Taking small rewarding actions in a workbook will help your customer/student break out of their comfort box and show them that it is not so bad on the outside.
**DO NOT MAKE IT FILL IN THE BLANK** This does nothing to help your customer/student learn about the process. Instead include blank mind maps for brainstorming, guided writing, examples, partially done activities where they fill in the details, and more.
Ask Good Questions
“The trick is to find the medium questions that can be answered and that take you somewhere.” – Jerome Bruner
“To question means to lay open, to place in the open. Only a person who has questions can have real understanding” – Hans-Georg Gadamer
Begin each section or lesson with a question. But not just any question. Create a question that automatically makes your reader or listener think. And not just think, but think in a deep understanding of the topic, or in a way that sparks BIG IDEAS.
I have followed the first step in this post, but I have not asked the questions that spark BIG IDEAS. I struggle with this one. Master teachers can do this without thinking. Some of us have to be very conscious of how we ask questions. My strength is to get my students to ask their own deep understanding and big idea questions. It is an art form, but if you get good at it your customers/students success is limitless.
What would you do if you had a set of goals that you knew were impossible to fail at?
You can set goals for the lesson or the program, and you can help your customers/students to set their own goals. SMART goals are ideal (See SMART Goals Post Here) but they can also be simple. Don’t make them too complicated. When they are manageable and achievable action is not difficult to take.
How do we ensure that our customer/student takes action at the end of the book?
Some of you are getting this one right, but there is still a lot of work to do. A checklist is great, it helps set goals and get our minds right on what to do. But what about making it an action step guide.
Let me give you an example: Here is a checklist in the form of a grocery list
Buy at Krogers:
- Snap Peas
- Salad Dressing
- Pork Chops
- Lunch Meat
Now here is the same list in a Action Step form
Go to Krogers to get these groceries for the next few days:
- Buy Range Free Eggs in the Health Food Area
- Find best price on 90/10 Ground Beef
- Buy Everything for a Salad
- Roma or Cherry Tomatoes based on price and condition of fruit
- Shoe String Carrots
- Two Heads of Broccoli
- Bag of Snap Peas near the bagged salad area
- Don’t get the bagged salad it does not last very long
- Find your favorite salad dressing with no High Fructose Corn Syrup in it
- Buy one Natures Made Apple Juice and one Orange Juice
- Try a new beer this week and see how you like it
- Get a family pack of Pork Chops, preferably 4 or more in a package
- Get one pound of shaved roast beef and one pound of turkey from the deli counter
One is a checklist that anyone can follow. One is an Action Step that not only anyone can follow but includes specific things to do so that people don’t get lost in the process.
Teachers always get more out of a lesson than the students do. I know I got a lot out of writing this. I hope you were able to take something away from it also. Let me know your thoughts below in the comments section.