You think “passive income” and you might think, “Ooooh, making money while you sleep. That’s easy!” Sure, the making money while you sleep part IS easy—but everything it takes to get to that point? I’ll call it labor intensive.
Recently Ilise Benun of Marketing Mentor interviewed me for her podcast about what it’s really like to create a product and generate passive income. She wanted to know: Exactly how passive is passive income?
My 4 step digital course, the The Client Onboarding Toolkit, which walks creatives through the process of turning prospects into paying clients, from the first conversation, to contracts, invoicing and the project kickoff. I wanted to show that onboarding doesn’t have to be convoluted. It can be easy!
The process of creating and marketing the product?
Not so easy. Here’s some insight from the interview:
How did I come up with the idea?
Over the years, a lot of clients have commented that they liked my process of onboarding. That it was really easy. And this is the reason I wanted to go forward. Being able to share the process with others made it a good idea because I knew it’s something people (who were already on my list!) wanted. I was listening to my market. Unlike some products, my toolkit doesn’t replace my services. Instead, it’s a supplemental thing—business advice.
So, instead of trying to invent something out of thin air, consider:
- What are people asking for?
- What can they benefit from?
- What are their pain points?
- Will people on your list benefit from this product?
How long did it take?
It took me 3 years. I started blogging about different steps in the onboarding process so I’d have content ready and be able to formulate that into the product. It was 13 blog posts in total. Once they were all written, I put them into a Google doc and built a solid digital product.
And what about the marketing?!
Fortunately, I had a good list to market to because I’ve been building it for years. From there, marketing is about connecting the dots between your awesome product and your awesome list. I also have relationships and groups that have helped me gain exposure. But if you want your product to keep generating income, the marketing is an ongoing thing. So that’s not really passive either!
Is it worth it?
One thing I didn’t expect was the satisfaction-factor. I worked at this for a long time. It was a big goal. I made this product for myself—it wasn’t for a client. I finished it and I’m proud of it. I like to help people and I genuinely think it helps people. All of that makes me feel really good.