A lot of women’s wellness experts have this fascination with “taking their business online”, and in theory, an online product provides you with a pretty sweet passive income.
Once you’ve created the content, you just sell it over and over without having to reinvent the wheel.
And, the other positive is: you’re not working directly face-to-face with clients.
Is it really that simple though?
Not in my experience, no. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news there.
I was watching a thread unfold in a private Facebook group recently between an instructor who’s just recently gone back to teaching her classes after having baby, and other teachers in the group who have somewhat successful online programs.
Taking your business online does not necessarily solve the problem of bringing in extra capital, if you’re currently only just about breaking even with your face-to-face services.
In fact, if you’re making only a miniscule amount in your 1-2-1 sessions or classes – you have three options: put your prices up, search for a cheaper facility to hire, or cram more clients in to your classes and/or diary. End of.
Online takes constant attention and marketing, and if you think that by simply putting your program up on your website will make it sell – you’re delusional.
Going back to said instructor above, a lot of us in the group kindly and matter-of-factly talked her out of setting up online, mainly because it’s not the easy ride you think it is.
Anyone who’s anyone who’s set up an online offering knows this, and if you’ve done this yourself – my hat goes off to you.
She thought it would solve all of her issues with childcare fees, hall costs and getting bums on seats, until we explained the constant cycle of launching and re-launching, the fundamentals of list building, the constant churn of new information, having a presence online all the time and marketing funnels.
I don’t want to put you off here, because I’ve no doubt your stuff is good – you change and saves lives every other day, so why not get your content out there to the masses, eh?
Your first launch is generally one of your best, particularly if you’ve built up some hype about this shiny new product coming out, before launch day.
There’s a tip right there: if you’re thinking of creating an online program, work out how many weeks it’ll take you to produce, film and edit it, and every week leading up to that point, you want to be promoting it.
Suddenly announcing your program is now LIVE, isn’t going to cut it.
It’s the build up of excitement beforehand that piques people’s interest, the list building, and all of the Facebook lives, blog posts and email marketing you’ve done in the pre-launch phase that teases out content that’s going to help, ok?
The reason you don’t have an online program or any product suite to think of is because you probably lack the time to create, write, edit, market, launch, sell and maintain it.
You may also not possess the required technical skills to get your program on the online shelf too.
Am I right?
Pretty close, huh?
As Marie Forleo says: “Everything is figure-out-able”, so the technical side of things is not as hard as you think.
Put it this way: if I learnt the steps to film, edit, upload and share a video, you can too.
Selling online products isn’t easy, and if I see one more Facebook advert popping up on my feed that says “Launch Your Next Online Product Without The Stress “, I am going to scream.
You need to be prepared for technical issues, people not being able to login and access your content because they’ve typed their email address in incorrectly when they paid (yep this does happen), and what you’re going to do if someone asks for a refund.
What level of support do you want to offer to those who purchase? A Facebook group where you provide 24/7 commenting?
Aren’t you already spending enough time at your laptop already with your face-to-face clients?
It pays to think about these things.
And, you’ve got to do your numbers too. You need to know how many units of your program you need to sell to break even.
So, yes budgeting certainly comes into play here too – you’ve got to do some forecasting for sure.
The time of year you open the cart depends on sales, so think wisely. Had you even thought about this?
Everyone who’s anyone launches in September if they’re in the Northern Hemisphere, so do you really want to fight for that space, or could you fast forward or delay things so it’s a few months either side of that instead?
What happens when you launch and it doesn’t go as successfully as you’d hoped? Well, usually, you saddle up, get right back on the horse and work out why.
Was the price point too high? Did you really give enough free info away before the launch? Were you selling to a warm or cold audience? Did you really put in the work?
Are you willing to do a tonne of work for free behind-the-scenes to get your program online?
Because if you’re not, or you don’t have the time available, we’re back to delusional again here, I’m afraid.
I know this may not be exactly what you want to hear right now, but I’m hoping I’ve given you some food for thought as far as the future direction of your business.
I want you to crunch some numbers right now, ok?
So, open up a new spreadsheet, work out the price point of your new online program, then work out which classes/face-to-face services you no longer want to do, or want to scale back on.
Next calculation is to work out how much money you make currently with the face-to-face work.
Now, how many online programs will you need to sell to replace that income over one year?
It’s kind of eye-opening, huh?
I’d love to hear your numbers and your feedback, so post a comment below and let me know if getting an online program up and running is feasible for you as we go into the next half of 2018, or not.
If one of the reasons you’re NOT currently able to take your business online is because of lack of time…
…you need to learn to work more efficiently in your business.
Are you spending hours on admin every day?
Do those close to you often say: “You’re always on your phone!”?
You need some better time management skills there, by the sounds of it – and I can help!
Learning how to work more efficiently in your business is a great starting point.
And, I can help!
Check out my “Managing You HQ” program where I show you step-by-step how to improve your productivity so you can spend more time working ON your business and less time IN it.
Doors open again later this year, so click here to be the first to know when they do!