Everyone has unique advice that they can give to other people. And when you think about it, it comes down to the fact that we all have unique experiences and skillsets that makes us, us. And so in this article, I’m going to break down why it’s important to productize ourselves and then transition to talk about how to productize yourself in three simple steps to scale your impact as well as your income.
The first thing we need to understand is why is it important to productize ourselves? The reason why is because time is the great equalizer for everybody. Therefore, when we productize ourselves, we’re able to scale ourselves as well. We no longer have that variable of time being a major component as to whether or not we’re able to present our offer and create a sale opportunity for ourselves.
By productizing ourselves, we remove the need to have to invest time every single instance that we want to present our offer and sell something. In other words, we can create something once and sell it twice. We follow the public markets. This is why cloud SAS companies have been doing so well since 2015. They’re able to build a super powerful platform and then sell it to every single fortune 500 company with it costing them a marginal difference for every success of company that they bring onto their platform.
In other words, they’re able to achieve super high margins while also having recurring revenue coming in every single year as they sell more and more usage of their online platform. So, if we think about this in a smaller sense, in the context of us as a consultant, a coach or a freelancer, we realize that productizing ourselves is the difference of introducing leverage into our business. By doing so we’re no longer going to be confined by the number of hours we have in a day, a week or a year to work on our ideas.
How do we productize ourselves?
So now that we understand why productizing is important, we need to better understand how we can productize ourselves. To begin productizing ourselves, it really boils down to three simple steps. The first step is to figure out what we’re good at. And then the next step is to figure out what other people want or need. And then the third step is to create a product that helps people get those outcomes.
We all have things that we’re good at. Maybe we’re good at creating to-do lists for example, or building recipes from ingredients that you can get at Costco or creating custom fitness plans so that whenever you’re doing an eight week fitness program, you don’t get bored. Whatever it is, you can productize a skill or service you have if you approach it from the right lens. So let’s break down the three steps I outlined step-by-step.
Step #1: Identify what we are good at.
The first step, like I mentioned is to identify what we are good at. To do so, this is going to require a level of self-reflection from yourself. So here are some questions to consider when you think about what you’re good at. You should try to answer questions like what are three things I’m good at? Or if I were to ask my friends and family, what I’m good at, what would they say?
Or if I were to think about what my manager at work thinks I’m good at what would he or she say, or I could think about, what’s a problem that I’ve had to solve for myself recently and how did I go about solving that problem? When you do this, you’re going to come up with a laundry list of ideas of potential skills or services that you’re good at.
And the important thing for you to then do is to start to bucket these into major themes. Maybe those themes will be related to personal relationships, fitness, and health, and professional pursuits. The important thing here is to really highlight your strengths. Also, don’t be afraid to think outside the box.
There are certain skills you might have that you might not necessarily think are skills, but actually are. For example, I have a knack for selling things on Facebook Marketplace really effectively. If you haven’t seen my articles on that, be sure to do so. So I might list this skill as something that I am naturally good at.
The things you list don’t have to necessarily be related to things that you only are taught in school. These out of the box ideas are typically going to be more related to soft skills or real-life skills that you might have.
Step #2: Figure out what other people want or need.
The second step to productizing yourself is to figure out what other people want or need. Once you’ve laundry list your strengths, you should rank order your different ideas. From here, you’re going to have two to three ideas that are going to be particularly unique for you. When you really focus in on these skills, you’re going to want to think about what makes these skills super valuable or what other people really want in terms of outcomes from these sorts of skills.
For example, let’s say that you’re really good at building square websites. Well from this, you might also notice that from the global situation, coffee shops are really looking for new ways to reach the customers that used to visit their shops every single day. From here, there’s probably an opportunity for you to provide some sort of productized service or skill related to building websites for coffee shop owners or taking my earlier example of being really good at coming up with recipes, you might figure out that there are a lot of families that are always trying to think about ways to mix up the different ingredients that they are buying at Costco.
So if you were to package some sort of offering related to different recipe ideas from Costco under a certain budget, that would probably be something that families would love to check out. There are two really easy ways to figure out what people really want. The first one is to ask your target ideal customer profile. And the second one is to do keyword research in the sub communities of where these people like to hang out.
For example, you can check out the Reddit, Quora, and Twitter communities for these different sub-communities to try to figure out that sort of language that people use and the questions that they are always asking about.
If you need extra help on that, be sure to check out my SEO keyword research videos on my channel. Before we head into step number three, I want to hear from you, what’s a scale or service of yours that you think others would find valuable?
Step #3: Create a product that helps get outcomes.
The third step to productizing a skill or service is to create a product that helps your ideal customer get the outcomes that they want. Now that we’ve found the intersection of something that we’re good at and something that we know people want and are willing to pay money for, we can start to think about how to position and package a product that would help them achieve those outcomes. If we were to think about that coffee shop website example, there are a few different directions we could take.
For example, we could create a set of templates of square websites that coffee shop owners would be able to plug and chug for their own coffee shop to maybe help them launch a monthly subscription service for their coffee shop. Doing so would help these coffee shop owners introduce a new revenue stream with an online store while also keeping in touch with those customers that they may not have seen due to the global situation. Or another direction we could take is we could create a DIY course of how to create a website for your coffee shop.
In this example, we’d only have to build a copy shop website once and then record the entire process from start to finish. Then we could sell this as a step-by-step guide for creating a coffee shop website with this look over my shoulder series. To market this sort of product, we could cut up certain sections from this look over my shoulder video series and post those on YouTube to get some organic traffic to our course landing page.
Taking another example we might want to pursue that meal prep idea. In that situation we’re already in luck because somebody already created this product and validated it. 5dollardinners.com has a product called 20 meals at Costco for $150 that they’ve been selling since 2014. In other words, they’ve been able to sell this multiple times over the last five years, having only invested one time to make this product. When we dig more into 5dollardinners.com, we’ll notice that the creator has positioned herself as the place to go for affordable meal prep ideas for people that are low on time.
This is a great idea because I’m sure if I were part of her target market of parents with limited time thinking about different ways to mix things up with the recipe book that this could be a great way to do so for under $10 for every single recipe pack. The important thing to note here is that rather than position yourself as a coach that teaches meal prep, she creates products that help her target market get closer to their desired outcomes. In this situation, the desired outcome is saving time in finding recipes that work in stores that we already shot that while also keeping things interesting for the family.
When you’re creating your offer, the important thing to ask yourself is whether or not you are building something that you are going to be able to build once and sell twice. You’re going to want to be really careful here in introducing things that involve human capital. Ultimately, we’re building products here and we’re not building packaged services. There’s a really important distinction that I think some service creators confused when they’re thinking about productizing themselves.
There are two things I want you to remember from this article:
- The first one is that anyone can productize themselves, whether it’s creating a YouTube video sharing something that you already know with other people or a PDF guide that teaches step-by-step how to accomplish a certain task, there is something that you are good at that you can product time.
- The second thing to keep in mind is that you need to start an end with something that you are good at. It’s really important that you stay within your circle of confidence. Don’t create a product just because you think you’re going to make a lot of money with it. That’s going to show. Instead, focus on things that you know that you are within the top 10% or top 1% and teach people how to accomplish those sorts of things.
If you found this article helpful, be sure to check out my YouTube channel to get new videos every single week. I’ll help take you from zero to self-starter as you grow your business, get more customers, and hone your business acumen. Also, feel free to share this with anybody that you think might also benefit from learning how to productize their skills or services.