Thin Slicing Content

tomato_slicesOne of the mistakes many content producers make is trying to cover too many topics in one product, article, blog post, teleseminar or other piece of content. As Tim Carter of said in his Cash Content Formula interview:

The key in [my] ebooks is, I am solving a very precise problem. In other words, if someone wants to know how to put crown molding up, I have the step by step photographs, and I have the supporting text to show you how to complete the job. That is it.

They are not interested in door trim. They are not interested in cutting the grass. They are not interested in laying a brick wall. If they are, then fine. Write a separate e book for that.

Tim gets it.

He understands the art of thin slicing content. When you thin slice your content, you focus on a very narrow topic and provide exactly what your customers need to know about that topic. You do not give them a lot of extraneous information they have to wade through to get what they need. And you do not give them a little bit on a lot of topics. You give them everything they need to know about a very narrow subject.

As an example, let’s say you are creating products about training your dog. (The products could be ebooks, videos, print books or other formats.) Instead of creating “Everything You Could Ever Want to Know About Training Your Dog,” you could create one about housebreaking your puppy, one on teaching your dog to obey basic commands, and others on controlling aggression in your dog, the proper way to walk your dog, teaching him to do tricks, dealing with separation anxiety, curbing destructive behavior, etc.

The same principle applies when writing articles and blog posts. If you try to write one blog post about training your dog…well, that is going to be one loooooong blog post. Instead, you would slice the content even thinner than in the above example. For example, each trick would be a separate post as opposed to an ebook showing how to train your dog to do several tricks.

When you find that the content you are creating is getting larger than you expected, it may be time to do some thin slicing. Choose one thing that you will explain in depth, and leave the rest to future content products.

To learn more about creating a profitable information product, see


  1. says

    Very interesting idea. Most people faulter in starting a business or working on a project by having too wide a focus.

    I like the idea of developing thin sliced information. It would also easily lend itself to creating a much wider range of products that relate to each other.

    I do think both approaches can be successful though. A general overview of a subject is good for someone who isn’t sure what area they want to be working in. A thinly sliced product is for someone with a well defined problem.

    Both can work but would be marketing differently and have a different customer.

  2. says

    I heard Cathy speak in Houston and her ideas about “thin slicing content” were a paradigm shift for me. My brain naturally gravitates to big broad topics but I am convinced that I need to learn to “thin slice.” Someone should do a teleseminar on this skill because I would guess that 90% of prospective information marketers have difficulty narrowing their content ideas to a sufficiently manageable and marketable size.

  3. Dadisi says

    I want to learn how to turn my manuscript into a ebook. Can you help me? I’ll be looking forward to hear from you. When are you coming back to Houston, Texas.

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