Close
Close

5 Product Creation Mistakes Most Bloggers Make

This guest post is by Henri Junttila of WakeUpCloud.com.

Creating your own products can take you from earning a few dollars a month to a few thousand. It can be scary, but as you learn to take action, and learn from the feedback you receive, you get better and better.

There are many mistakes I see beginning product creators make. The good news is that these mistakes are very easy to avoid if you keep them in mind.

Painting the World

Copyright photocreo - Fotolia.com

Most bloggers know exactly what these mistakes are but don’t incorporate that knowledge into what they are doing.

Don’t let that be you. Take control of your life and your blogging by avoiding the most common product creation mistakes.

Mistake 1. Not asking what people want

One of the biggest mistakes I see new bloggers make when they are creating the first product is not asking their audience what they want.

This can be as simple as surveying your audience and asking them what their biggest frustrations and problems are in the area of your expertise. I also suggest you drill down from their answers to get even more specifics about what exactly it is that they want a solution to.

For example, you may discover that people want to learn how to blog, but as you drill down, you discover that what they really want is to learn how to create their own products.

You just never know until you ask.

Mistake 2. Aiming for perfection

Another big obstacle is perfection. It’s easy to believe that you need to get everything perfect in order to get your product out there and selling.

The truth of the matter? You can do a pre-launch, where you give your audience a discount and tell them that you want feedback on how you can improve your product before you release it fully.

The beauty of the Internet is that you can tweak and revise your product at any time. Don’t be afraid to get your product out there even if you don’t think it’s perfect.

Often our minds play tricks on us. It’s impossible for you to know what “perfect” means for your audience. You might as well get your product out there, and ask them.

Mistake 3. Pricing and value misperceptions

If you feel that you’re not ready to create your own products, instead, you may want to create a short and to the point report that you sell for $7.

This will give you confidence—if you’ve surveyed your audience and you’re solving a problem, people will buy, and they will be happy to do so.

After you’ve gotten a few sales, you can set up an email autoresponder that automatically asks your buyers to give you feedback on your product. Ask them to rate your product on a scale from 1 to 10. And if they answer anything below a 10, simply ask them the following: What would I have to do to make this product worthy of a 10?

This is a simple way to build on what works. As you do this with more and more products, you’ll see patterns around what people like and don’t like. But the only way to learn how to do this is by taking action and getting feedback.

Mistake 4. Failing to build anticipation

A great way to get people fired up about what you’re doing is to build anticipation. Just look at how Apple does this with each new product they launch: they tell you about what they are doing long beforehand.

You don’t have to make this a big show. You may just want to tell your audience what you’re up to and what they will be getting once you launch your product.

As you do this more frequently, you’ll notice new insights about what your audience likes and how you can make the whole process better and more effective.

Mistake 5. Trying to make the perfect launch

Last, but not least is the launch. I see a lot of people having problems launching their products, because while the content of the product may be good, they just don’t know how to go about launching it.

The truth is that you probably won’t have a perfect launch on your first try. You may not even need to get affiliates for your products right away. I personally love to focus on getting things done instead of trying to get them perfect. It helps me learn and make progress that much faster.

Creating your own products can be highly profitable and a great way to monetize your blog. And always remember: the only thing standing in your way is you.

What kinds of mistakes have you seen beginning bloggers make when they create their first products?

Henri writes at Wake Up Cloud, where you can get his free course: Find Your Passion in 5 Days or Less. And if you liked this article, you will enjoy one of his top articles: How I Made $46,305.38 in My First Full Year Online.

About Guest Blogger

This post was written by a guest contributor. Please see their details in the post above. If you'd like to guest post for ProBlogger check out our Write for ProBlogger page for details about how YOU can share your tips with our community.

Problogger.net runs on the Genesis Framework

Genesis Framework

The Genesis Framework empowers you to quickly and easily build incredible websites with WordPress. Genesis provides the secure and search-engine-optimized foundation that takes WordPress to places you never thought it could go.

Check out the incredible features and the selection of designs. It's that simple - start using Genesis now!

Comments

  1. Tarrum says:

    I think step 4 is the best and one of the most important one. You gotta tell people about what you are going to introduce, tell them a a few interesting things to get them hyped and so they can’t wait till you release it.

    Definitely helpful to some of us who once wish to launch our own product. I hope there’s gonna be a post explaining how exactly you get the thing (like an ebook) up and running so people can buy it.

    • And also…. I think every product launch needs a webinar. Even if you have to pay someone to help you with it.

      • PJ says:

        I agree. A product is not enough these days. Hosting a webinar is a great way to convince fence sitters of your product and a great way to help build the interation aka comunity.

    • Graham Lutz says:

      Hey Tarrum – check out ByBloggers.net (not my site, not an affiliate) for some of the best ebook resources.

      Does anyone have any cool techniques they have used to build anticipation among readers? Would love to hear it!

    • Still you should write your own ebook, unique ideas and something which hasn’t been published before in order to attract people’s attention. otherwise nobody will be interested to buy your product!

  2. IM Nick says:

    Another good thing about asking people what they want is that it really helps you develop your sales page, and if done correctly it can practically write your bullet points for you.

    • Graham Lutz says:

      Nick, do you ask your readers on your blog or through your email list? or another way?

      • IM Nick says:

        Usually I would ask people on my email list to either tell me what they want to see, what problems they are having, or ask them to fill out a survey.

  3. Thanks Henri for such a great article, all points are valid and important specially knowing what your audience want! A lot of people just feel entrepreneurial and wake up one day wanting to launch a product and that’s it!

    Thanks Again!
    Firas

  4. zik says:

    Yes, for point1 we need to ask them from the questionnaire or from contact form… what we need to improve or to add value…

  5. Ian says:

    Great post, I’ve been toying with the idea of releasing an ebook for years now. Would be a lot of work, but your point on aiming for perfection may be what’s holding me back. Maybe I just need to dive in, write it and release it.

  6. Thank you Henri and Darren for the timely information. It’s hard for me to say which is the most important point. I’m just starting to offer products so it may be that Mistake #1 would be the most important for me to work on.

    I will keep the rest in mind as I go forward. Thanks again for the timely points.

    Jack

  7. Thanks Henri – very timely for me, as I’m on the cusp of launching my first product. I think I’ve been through each one of these mistakes and hopefully have come out the other side!

    The process has been a learning experience, that’s for sure.

    Now to get some more excitement brewing…

  8. Daniel says:

    I think it is a great idea to sell a product from your site.

    If the site has a good rep, and a reasonably large loyal following who find value in the information(Resources) being provided, a product release should do quite well.

    What you said about building anticipation(Like a movie release) makes a lot of sense.

    Though, on the other side of the coin, if the product itself does not reach anywhere near the level of quality or value(in the eyes of your customers) as was trumpeted through some form of a mass media campaign, it could have the reverse effect.

    As for pricing, that would be a tough one to decide.

  9. Kendra says:

    Informative post and will be helpful for me as I continuing working on my ebook, especially points 1 and 3.

    Thanks, Kendra

  10. Yea u make good points. but maybe for the first product u shouldn’t try to sell it. At least at new blogs. Maybe instead make a free ebook if u sign up for newsletter etc.

  11. I have had some experience with creating my first eBook. It is more of a handbook at 37 pages but I just wanted to get it out there. It is one of a series of eBooks that I plan to launch this year.

  12. Alice says:

    This was a GREAT post! Truly the only thing holding me back is me! I think producing content that’s most relevant to your audience is the most important element. Whether you launch perfectly or not, if the content you produce is not relevant to your readers, it won’t matter. My biggest challenge is getting the needed feedback from my audience. I ask, I create surveys, I send email yet the responses have been minimal.

  13. Henri,

    I am just working on my first product and your points are helpful. Indeed I sent out an email to my list two weeks ago telling them about my product and I asked them what they want to be included in the book. The responses were amazing. In order to make people respond, I have promised them to add to a lucky draw where one winner will get my ebook for free.

    Perfection – it is a relative term and most of the times it can never happen. I wouldn’t wait for that. I would rather concentrate on completion :)

    Cheers,
    Jane.

  14. This is a great article. Sometimes new bee blogers like me, feel a little dejected when we see number of visitor not really going up. I quickly accommodated point#1 in my blog, I hope readers do come out and suggest topics for me.

  15. Archan Mehta says:

    Henri,

    As a long-time fan of your blog, Wake Up Cloud, it feels great to know that you have been featured here.
    Thank you for contributing such a terrific post. Your post really resonated with me. You are spot on here.

    I think the key word here is–empathy.

    Lack of empathy can break relationships and also result into loss of business if you are a marketer.
    You just have to be willing to step into the shoes of your clients or customers: you don’t have a choice.

    We all know of people who meet other people and only talk about themselves: that is not the way to go.
    You can’t have a dialogue with a person who is only interested in a monologue. After a while, people will find you boring and will soon try to avoid your company. Nobody likes a bore or a self-centred person.

    Similarly, if you are a marketer you have to develop the skill of listening with empathy. Listen to your target audience. What are their concerns? What are their expectations? How can you help them to identify a problem and find a solution? Ask them for feedback through surveys, interviews and questionnaires. Make it okay for them to send you a private email message if they do not feel comfortable participating in public fora. And then try to find a need and fill that need.

    Moreover, shoot for excellence, but not for perfection. Learn as you go along. Tweak constantly, for the work you do is a process, not a final destination. Develop a mindset that puts the customer first in line.

    Cheerio.

  16. Domaining says:

    Not asking what people want is the only reason of massive failure. IMO

  17. Jacqueline says:

    I’m curious, does the stereotypical sales page- you know the kind where you scroll down for like a full minute reading things like “All of this and MORE can be YOURS if you just follow the 31 EASY steps in this ebook” work well compared to more modest and visually appealing sales pages? Because personally when I see pages like that I immediately close them without reading anything, but I can’t actually recall seeing a different kind of sales page. Which means the awful looking ones are memorable. So what works best for a sales page?

  18. I would like to sell a product, but can’t think of anything. Maybe Cafe Press is the way to go – mugs, T-shirts, etc.

  19. People often say “don’t wait till it’s perfect” but obviously it’s a tricky call sometimes. You can’t put a product out there that is flawed and could actually even harm somebody’s business in some way. In my case that is particularly true as I provide a software product, and I am always a little nervous whenever I put a new version out, as if I have broken something in the update people’s sites could come crashing down and with it their earnings and their business!

    So in the case of software products beta testing is very important – finding people (usually existing customers you have a rapport with) who are willing to give the new version a go on a non-essential site of theirs and give feedback on any possible problems.

    Perhaps the same could be done with ebooks – there’s another suggestion for the list.

  20. LOL this is so true, a lot of bloggers, beginners try out to be perfect from the beginning. And worst thing is that they want fast TRAFFIC, literly to come to them on the second day.

  21. Jessa says:

    This is one fine very nice post! Thanks for sharing this facts that usually bloggers overlook. This serves as a great reminder for all “probloggers” out there and also a “treat” to all new aspiring bloggers! :-)

  22. Mistake 2. Aiming for perfection
    People always land up making this mistake because they believe that everythiing should be perfect or a certain way and you cannot always have that.

    Otherwise, great tips on mistakes that are made!

  23. Jeff says:

    Great post man…with more than a dozen information products across 4 different markets we can certainly back-up all 5 of these “mistake” categories.

    One comment regarding #1 – not only is a good to ask people what they want, it is even better (in our experience) to understand what they want from looking at 1) what they are saying on forums, blog comments, social networking sites, comments against related books on Amazon, etc…and 2) studying what they have bought in the past and what they are buying today through various sales rank capabilities at websites like Amazon.com

    People won’t always tell you what they want (sometimes they don’t really know, other times they don’t express it properly, and still other times, they just won’t tell you…so for us, we have had success simply studying a market’s behavior and what they are saying – then quickly generating products they have TOLD us they will buy.

    Cheers,

    Jeff

  24. Daniel says:

    Thanks for the post Henri. Point 2 resonates most strongly with me, it’s so easy to get bogged down trying to perfect something. You can lose whole day’s tinkering with things that probably won’t make a difference at the end of the day.

    Shifting your focus from perfection to getting things done is definitely a powerful move..

  25. Richard Ng says:

    Great sharing! All are real and pratical mistakes to avoid. Especially like the mistake 2 on the aiming for perfection! Personally view that there is no perfect product! There is always room for improvement!

    Cheers!

  26. Glynis Jolly says:

    This was impressive. I learned from all 5 points that were made. That doesn’t happen very often. I liked so much what I read that I subscribed to Henri’s blog.

  27. I think this a great advice. As I become a blogger, yes, I long road ahead of me. I do think what kind of brand I really want because I want to go out there and roar like a lion.

  28. praveen says:

    good informative post;
    when you are giving tips for improvement in skills then most thing is that you have to think like needy person not just like a helper.
    Helping person always thankful to you when you give exact what they need.

  29. Cresilda says:

    I’m one of the blogger who made some of the mistakes mentioned above. This post is an eye opener for me. Thanks for sharing this insightful article.

  30. You know, pricing based on value is often the best way to price in such a situation. I wrote an article on that which went on to be the most downloaded paper in SSRN. The intro to the same is available in my blog.