Here is Part Three of my series on how to quickly and easily create an information product.
Part One showed you how to get ready to create your audio product.
Part Two detailed how to produce and package the recording.
Part Three will show you ways to sell your audio product online.
Part Four will give you ideas to market your new product, including pricing.
If you have been playing along at home, you have recorded and produced an audio program. In next week’s lesson we will talk about pricing and marketing your audio, but here we are going to talk about how to make your audio available online.
You may wish to offer your audio program as a physical product, and ship a CD to each customer. Or, you may choose to offer the audio as a downloadable file. Many product creators like the idea of downloads because there is no need to maintain inventory and orders are filled automatically with no need to trek to the post office with a bin full of envelopes.
The most important consideration, however, is what your customers expect and want. If they are uncomfortable downloading files, or want to hold a physical product in their hands, downloads will not be successful. You may also find yourself spending a lot of time providing support to customers who can not figure out how to make the download work and save the file.
On the other hand, if your customers are fairly tech-savvy they may appreciate the immediacy of a download. They get the “see it, want it, bought it, got it” experience, and have the audio minutes after buying it instead of days.
Not sure which your customers would prefer? Give them a choice. Offer both a CD and a download and let them decide. You may choose to charge more for the CD (plus shipping and handling) to cover the increased expense, but customers can choose for themselves which version they want.
Selling a CD online is much like selling any other product. You will need a way to take orders and accept payments at your web site. I recommend starting simply: Get a PayPal account. With PayPal there is no out of pocket expense until you make a sale. You may decide later to get a full merchant account, but starting with PayPal makes sense. PayPal also includes a shopping cart and buy buttons that are easy to integrate into your web site.
Google Wallet is similar to PayPal. The disadvantage, in my opinion, is that customers must have a Google account to pay. It adds one more obstacle to making the sale.
Selling downloads means that you have to be able to take orders and accept payments, and then deliver the downloadable file to the customer. If you are a techie, you probably know how to do this by setting up a password-protected area of your web site and using a script to generate passwords automatically for customers.
If you are not a techie, there are several shopping carts and other services that can do this. For a simple, free to low-cost solution, I recommend Payloadz. It integrates easily with PayPal and Google Checkout, so customers have a seamless experience and receive their download immediately after paying. PayLoadz also has an affiliate program built in, so that you can offer commissions to encourage others to market your products. Payloadz is also designed to work with eBay, so you can sell your audio program on eBay, too.
In addition to selling CDs and downloads at your web site, you may be able to sell through other sites, too. Earlier, I mentioned eBay as one possibility. I sell a CD at Amazon.com through the Amazon Advantage program. In order to participate, you must have a physical product (not a download) and the product must have an ISBN bar code on it.
If you do not want to pay for a block of ISBNs and ship CDs to Amazon, you can also offer CDs on Amazon through http://www.CreateSpace.com/. This is a “print on demand” service for books, CDs, DVDs and more. Although CreateSpace offers the option of audio downloads, the pricing structure is geared to music, and may not work for a spoken-word program.
Look for other sites that attract your target market and see if they offer products. If so, contact them and ask if they would like to make your product available to their visitors. You could do this by offering them a quantity discount (e.g., 40% off when they buy 10 or more or whatever discount schedule you wish to offer) or you could offer a dropship arrangement where they take the orders and you ship them. The seller collects the money from customers, then pays you a discounted price. They keep the difference as their commission.
Watch for the next part of this series next week, where we will talk about more ways to sell your audio programs, online and offline. Be sure to subscribe to updates (in the upper right-hand column) so you do not miss the rest of this series and other articles on creating and marketing information products, plus lots more.
Want to know more about fast and easy ways to turn what you know into cash, including a detailed plan that will allow you to create an audio product in just one day? Get my Cash Content Formula program. You will find hundreds of ways to make money with books, booklets and other printed products, ebooks, audio programs, image products, blogging, video and much, much more. You also get lots of bonuses, including monthly coaching calls.