AskPat 355 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 355 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today.
All right, here's today's question from David.
David: Hi, Pat. This is David. So, I'm ready to launch my first info product, and I'm super stoked about it. I've incorporated everything I've learned from you over the years, which is a lot. And I can't wait to see it released on those who need it. But here's the thing. At the moment, it consists of a lot of Word and PowerPoint documents and some audio files. Yeah, it's super valuable content, but it's not quite what you might call a product. So based on your experience with Green Exam Academy and FoodTruckr, how do you recommend I package all this up in a way that is professional, self-contained, and easy to consume on various devices? So, perhaps it should be one long PDF, or separate PDF's, or maybe a zipped folder structure. I don't know, and I wanted to ask the expert before I went and launched this. Thanks for your time, and thanks to your team as well who support you and just make sure that all this amazing content gets to us every week and every day. Take care.
Pat Flynn: Hey, David. What's up? Thank you so much for the question today. I really appreciate the kind words, and I'll pass on the kind words that you mentioned about my team to the team. They always appreciate hearing things like that, so, thank you for that, David. And also congratulations to you on your upcoming product. It sounds like it's going to be great. I don't know what it's about or who it's for, but that's the first thing I want to talk about with you actually, and that is who exactly is in your audience and how would they prefer absorbing this content. That's going to give you a great start in terms of direction for how to package this product. And you know, they might not know exactly what's possible, but you might be able to have certain conversations with people in your audience if there are any that are accessible. Perhaps people on your email address. People who have left you comments on the blog. People who have asked you questions before. Maybe even people on a list that you have in preparation for this or in anticipation of this particular product, if you've set that up already. Sort of like a wait list. Whatever the case may be, find people in your audience and seriously just ask them what would they prefer.
I found out a lot of things about the food truck industry, for example, by speaking specifically to people who owned food trucks. For instance, they're in a truck 16 hours a day and it's very difficult for them to find time to read, which is why with all of our products and with the blog content itself, we turn a lot of that into audio content. We have a podcast. All of the books that we've come out within the products, they come out with also an audio version as well. So that was just some insight based on conversations with people in our target audience, and I suggest you do the same thing.
Now, you could mention, well, you have this information you want to share, and you can offer them different options and these are the options I'm going to also offer for you to share, and also you know think about a little bit before putting this together, if you haven't already. And you know the cool thing about this, even before I get into the different kinds of ways to package your product, is that (a) as long as the information in your product, no matter how that product turns out, is valuable. As long as that information is valuable, people are going to get a lot of value out of it. And they're going to thank you for it no matter how it's delivered. And (b) you can make improvements over time. The thing is, I've seen a lot of people go through this process. They try to find the best way to provide that information, and then they don't ever provide that information because they're too worried about how to provide that information. And when you are stuck in that sort of perfection mindset, what happens is you don't ever launch it, and you're doing the worst thing possible, which is never giving your audience the opportunity to take in that content in some way, shape, or form.
So, David, I know you're probably thinking about wanting to make this the best way possible, but you've got to launch and just ship and then you can make it better over time. And that's what I was going to say is, you know, no matter how you come out with this, you can make changes and improve over time. You can get feedback directly from your audience on what they like and keep that, or what they'd like to be changed or what could be improved. And you can add those things in later or update what's in there already.
So, there are ways to obviously make this incredible. You could, for example, create a video course. So actually having yourself on camera, or maybe you're talking over these PowerPoint slides that you have and doing a screen capture, which is obviously a lot easier to do than getting some high-end equipment and recording yourself. But I mean, you can go all out. You can spend, and a lot of people do spend, thousands of dollars creating incredibly high quality content. But again, you don't have to do that. You don't have to do that right up front, especially if the information, like you said, is completely valuable and will be absolutely helpful to your audience. So you don't need to do that, but I'm just saying, that's an option. That's on one side of the spectrum.
On the other side of the spectrum, you could take out the videos completely. You could take out even the audios and just have a PDF file, which is just all the content that you have in one PDF. That's sort of on the other end of the spectrum. And that's something that, for example, would be put into a zip file and then delivered upon purchase through perhaps gumroad.com. gumroad.com, or something like that, that would automatically deliver that digital product to them after purchase. And that could be fine too. That's how GreenExamAcademy.com become successful with its ebook, which was essentially just a PDF file, until I came out with the audio version, which people did enjoy. They loved hearing the book, and that was something that was also included in a digital download in one complete zip file. And then they unloaded that zip file and it had all the different MP3s in there. Plus, that had the ebook in it as well, if they happened to purchase the double package with the ebook and the audio book.
Now, like I said, if you're going to do video and things like that, and you know, you might want to experiment with that. Although maybe you could do a soft launch or a pre-launch with the PDF only and then come out with a version that everybody who'd already purchased it would love to get. Or maybe even have them pay extra for just the video content or not. Or maybe it's just a great value add, or something that gives you another excuse to launch it, you know, sort of in a second wave or second phase with the video content, if you wanted to get things out sooner than later, which is often suggested. With the video content, if you wanted to deliver that, the best way to do that is to get a hold of a membership plugin or a membership-type platform, which allows you to create a course where people can sign in to get access to a place where there are video files, typically in modules, and then lessons in those modules with videos, which could include those worksheets or the PDF files of the slides, the audio files, and anything like that.
Now, a lot of times, people assume that when you have a membership site, you also have to have a community. Now you do have the option of enabling comments and putting a forum in there and maybe linking to a Facebook group, if you'd like to take it off of the site, but you don't have to do that. There are amazing products out there that deliver the value that they promise that do not have a community in them, which is a little bit easier for you as the content provider, as the owner of the product, because you don't have to go in there and make sure the community is active. I've had a course before that did have a forum that died because it was just very difficult to keep that going. And if it's simply a standalone product with a very clear solution to a very clear specific problem, it doesn't necessarily need a community.
Now, there is a huge benefit of having a community, obviously, if you are getting people to pay a recurring fee. That's a great reason that people will want to stay in, is because they make those connections in there. They're getting a lot of value beyond the content that you're just providing in your courses and lessons and modules. They're getting a lot of value from the communication, and the friendships, and the connections, and the networks that they're building within your product. But again, that's not necessary. And that's something that could also be added over time.
But with what you said, you said you had a Word document, it's probably almost like a book, some PowerPoint presentations, and some audio. It almost sounds like you could either turn those things into a single PDF file or multiple PDF files, if you feel it will be easier to consume that way. And again, that's up to you and also what your audience likes. And additionally, with the audio files, that's something that you could perhaps give people a download link for. You could host that link on something like Dropbox, for example, or you can give people access to it through stuff like Gumroad. You can put all those in one single zip file, or you can have people even download the PDF and have a link to the zip file, or, excuse me, the link to the audio file within that PDF. You could do it that way as well. Or if you wanted to make it a little bit higher value, easier to consume, and just higher perceived value, you can put it behind a login and password situation using a membership site or course-type tool.
Now, to finish off, here are the types of tools that you could use to accomplish that. Probably the easiest one to use that most people use on a WordPress site is called WP WishList; stands for WordPress WishList. And that is a membership site plugin where you can simply put a number of different pages on your site with this content on it in a password protected area. So people have to login in order to gain access to those pages. The one by Derek Halpern, which is coming up and a lot of people are saying great things about, is called Zippy Courses. You can look that up, and the cool thing about that is over time you'll be able to make multiple courses and people can just simply use the same login that they used for the first one in all of the other subsequential courses that you come out with down the road, which is really awesome. And then there's also another one called WP Courseware, which is another great one that I've heard a lot of great things about too, which is also a WordPress plugin.
So those are some options for you, David. I wish you the best of luck, and hopefully this gives you a little bit of direction. But again, I wouldn't spend too much time trying to find the perfect way to deliver this. I would obviously talk to your audience a little bit to see what they would like or what they would prefer. I would also explore the idea, if you are up to it, of using the slide PowerPoints that you have and also a screen recording over them to provide a little bit more value. That gives you some video without you having to set up a huge video setup and getting your face on camera, if you're afraid to do that. And also, putting things behind a membership site, if possible. But again, you can ship with a minimum viable product. You can improve over time. And you're going to still provide a lot of value to your audience, especially if that content is gold, like you said that it is, which I'm sure it is, and it's great, and you need to get it in the hands and the eyes and the ears of your audience as soon as possible.
So, wishing you the best of luck, David. Thank you so much. I really appreciate it. An AskPat t-shirt will be sent your way for having your question featured here on the show. Thank you so much. For those of you who have a question that you'd like potentially featured here on the show, just head on over to AskPat.com and you can ask right there on that page using the widget from Speakpipe.com.
Thank you all so much. I appreciate it, and I'll see you and can't wait to serve you in tomorrow's episode of AskPat. To finish it off, of course, here's a quote from Jeff Bezos. He says, “If you never want to be criticized, for goodness sake, don't do anything.” Love that quote. Cheers, take care, and I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat. Bye.