product development

A Great Idea, and a Great Product = Half the Job

Our clients are often surprised at the amount of work that goes into marketing and selling a product or service. They are also caught off guard by other aspects of business preparation.

To sell a product that you manufacture, you must not only manufacture a great product, you must package it, prepare marketing materials, document your business policies and procedures, and make sure that your purchase process workflow (offline or on) works smoothly.

With a service, sometimes the documentation process is even more involved, because there are generally more variables.

If you self-publish a book, you may feel that when you have the book written, that you are close to finished. But that was also only half the work. You still need to format it, create a cover, put it into a standard book format, have it edited and reviewed for errors, and put it into the published format. Following that, you still have to set up a sales venue, and promote the book in an effective way, which also involves prepping good marketing materials.

Some clients come to us wanting an affiliate program, feeling that they just need to obtain the appropriate tracking software and it is done. If that were true, everybody would have an affiliate program. To have an effective one, you have to think about how your program will operate, document your policies and procedures, configure the affiliate software to work the way you need it to (this is a fairly big job in itself and involves some forethought), and then create your affiliate support pages – program overview, program details, and affiliate resource page.

Anything worth doing, that is going to get you something worthwhile in return, takes work. If it is going to get you something big, then it takes a lot of work. Anyone who tells you otherwise is either misinformed, ignorant, or dishonest.

People who do not realize the amount of work going into a project usually do not have a clear vision of what they want to accomplish. It stands to reason that if you are aware of what you want to accomplish in selling something, that you will consider HOW you want to sell it. And if you want other people to sell it for you, that you will be willing to give them good information about selling it, create good policies to make paying them sustainable, and that you will be willing to set up a good framework to support those sales.

Those who are not willing to INVEST the necessary work, are not really serious about operating a business. This may sound harsh, but it gets even harsher. They do not want a business, they want to gamble. Because only gambling even pretends to offer something for nothing, and only gamblers get taken in by it. Because we know that with gambling, everybody loses except the “house”, and the occasional RARE winner. With a business gamble, you aren’t going to win.

Most of our clients, when presented with a large amount of work to achieve a goal, do one of two things:

  1. They revise their goals to something more attainable in the short term.
  2. They look at the work, figure out how to prioritize it to make it achievable, and they tackle it one step at a time.

Most of our clients do NOT totally bail, because when they get to the point of working with us, they’ve already committed to owning a business. They’ve already faced similar circumstances where a project seemed overwhelming and so much bigger than they’d thought, and they’ve worked their way through that. So they have a history of hard work and some success under their belt, even if the success is merely overcoming the initial discouragement.

To succeed, we have to think ahead, and be willing to lay the proper groundwork, and then to tackle additional hurdles as they come. Giving up at the outset guarantees failure. Determination, planning, documentation, and hard work, on the other hand, can come together into something purely amazing.

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