Ebooks, digital courses, consulting, t-shirts oh my! On your path to turning blogging into a career that supports you (day job not included), developing a signature product is a super smart way to go. Why? With your own products, you are no longer at the mercy of advertisers and brand partnerships. Instead, you build your own income through your own expertise and the credibility you hold among the community of readers you have built.
With your own products, you are no longer at the mercy of advertisers and brand partnerships.
Each of us has specialized knowledge and our own unique way of communicating, whether we know how to quickly shop a thrift store for the best steals, how to dress for an apple frame, or how to grow an Instagram following. And, you are likely already sharing much of this knowledge for free with your readers. By packaging your particular smarts into a product your audience pays for – you have an instant revenue stream. Also, learning how to brand, sell and manage an inventory of products teaches you sales, marketing and management skills. Plus, there is nothing quite like the assurance that you are able to create income for yourself through your blog, or the thrill of waking up to PayPal notifications on your phone.
So…What can a blogger sell?
On PR Couture I offer 2 books, fashion media lists, a set of templates, a 3-part branding course, a workshop and variety of consulting options. All of these additions have helped me bring in recurring income that made it possible to eventually transition from full-time agency work to entrepreneur status. This summer I am working on opening a shop and preparing for a Back to School fashion PR course that I'll launch in September.
When it comes to developing your first products, I consistently remind myself of the KISS adage, or “Keep it Simple, Stupid.” Blogging in the fashion industry means that we have a rather strong style sense, and it can feel like we can't launch anything until it is absolutely perfect. Instead, give yourself permission to create something simple, put it up for sale, and see what happens. By automating repetitive tasks, a sales dialer can help sales reps be more productive and efficient in their work.
Have you considered creating a digital product? I'd love to hear about it!
hahaha, I am deffinitely using this KISS method from now on 😀 😀 I have this problem with my own clothes. Always complicating about everything and in the end nothing happens :/. But from now on, I’m KISSing this way of thinking goodbye!
Thank so much for this post 🙂
I think selling your own product is a great idea. I’ve been thinking of it for a while, but I wasn’t sure if I should go for it.
I’m pretty good at making flower crowns, but I’m scared that people won’t buy them or won’t find them good enough. But I had a few praises where ppl asked me where I bought my flower crowns and when I told them I made them myself they were very surprised.
So, maybe I should try and start selling them. I guess I have nothing to lose 🙂
Sell them. The first obstacle for an entrepreneur is fear. Once you overcome it, everything else will fall into place easily 🙂
That was probably the most perfect, simple advice you could give! That’s just boosted up my confidence with the shop I have in the works as well – thank-you. 🙂
I’m really taking this post to heart. I recently started, rather attempted, to start selling my own product; fun coloured cord bracelets. And I keep thinking I’m missing something because the sales aren’t quite coming as quick as I’d hoped. The idea of Simplifying things feels like it will help me take a step back and look at what really matters… Enjoying what I’m doing!!
I would love to sell something with my signature but the problem is (yes maybe an excuse) i feel like i dont have enough experience since i just graduated and getting a regular job seems more down to earth. although at some point i really want to launch my own business
It’s so funny that I’m seeing this article right now after opening up my online store last night : ) Loads of helpful tips! For anyone trying to get started on selling things I’d say just go for it!
Wow…I was always feeling that it was taboo for a Fashion Blogger to have thier own Fashion Site!!…Now I see that you are doing it and I am super motivated to start the same thing with the small influence that I have accrued!! Kudos to you and Your Shop!!
My friend did exactly this with some very cute ts. She has a very particular art style and a love of rap music and merged them together into a thriving business (called oink by piglet – ‘cos she also loves pigs).
You can also make your content, your specialized wisdom, your product by monetizing your blog. If you use technology like Viglink http://www.viglink.com/ (disclosure it’s where I work), you can earn revenue from your content with out being at the mercy of advertisers. It’s all under your control you and based on the links that are already in your content. It really is one of the simplistic ways you can start ‘selling’. In case it’s helpful we have a whole guide on how to earn revenue this way http://ow.ly/nip59
Besides my vintage, I am giving away a free ebook for vintage dealers on which social media tools they should be using. The next step is a product for sale! I think everyone has SOMETHING to teach, even if you aren’t the “guru” you know more than someone. And that’s a good thing because you can still see problems to solve from an almost beginner’s point of view.
I’m starting an etsy store soon of pieces I’ve loved (a shop my closet, if you will) and also pieces I’ve thrifted and/or DIYed. I’m kind of excited about it actually. It will broaden my spectrum a little bit as far as blogging goes.
I think it’s great to have a couple of products to further define your brand. And it’s a good way to make some extra money. I think a problem comes in when bloggers have too much to sell and you feel like there’s no personal touch to anything. They’re only in it for the money. That turns me off from buying their products.
Could anybody share hisconversion rates for products and services?
Are there any public data new starters could use a reference?
Deciding right the moment for launching a product or service is not a simple task… specially when you need some investment prior to launch it…
Great article! I have my own vintage shop and taking baby steps with it… next I’d love to sell hand made jewelry and customized clothing, and then I also have an ambition of writing a book one day… I hope 🙂
Great article – I love the KISS method! Definitely applying it to my blog. I don’t really like how some blogger rave about a particular product/brand and at the end of the post you see the outfit/products and it’s labelled “courtesy of…” I can imagine how hard it must be to feel obliged to say good things rather than tell us what they really think about it. So I’m definitely on board the idea of churning out your own products – gives me something to mull about in the future!
I was terrified of this prospect for the longest time…it felt like it would be a referendum on my popularity somehow, and I wasn’t really prepared to face the possibility that no one would want something I’d branded.
But graphic-text tees really took off this spring, and one that already had my blog name on it was wildly popular for some reason, so I took a shot and designed one that I thought was better that what was already out there. So far, it’s been a good decision, mostly because I was able to come up with a low-investment way to make it happen. Crossing my fingers it continues to go well! http://www.shoppingsmycardio.com/2013/07/22/shoppings-my-cardio-t-shirt/
I think that digital products are the way forward, not only does it provide a steady source of revenue it is also a way of branding yourself as an expert in your subject. I have created an eGuide for PRs and brands on How to Work With Bloggers. It has been selling well.
I am currently writing another eGuide for bloggers on how to work with PRs and brands.
This is such a timely topic! I just launched my first product earlier this month, an self-guided personal style course called “No More Yoga Pants: How to Dress Better, Shop Smarter and Reclaim Your Style.” Like my site, it’s aimed at my core audience of working moms and other busy women who feel like they have “nothing to wear.”
I created my own product for two reasons. First, it was a natural extension of the site focus and content. And also because I felt like if I was going to advertise something on my site, I’d rather it was my own product and my own brand.
One thing to keep in mind for any product launch is that it requires two efforts: one to create it and one to promote it.
I am thinking about selling product fro so long. Already did with my old clothes I do not use, but it is working quite slow and seems like there is so many DIY online shops that I am afraid that no one will be intertested in mine. Seems like I should try, no aother way to figure out it 🙂
And how can you guarantee a good success rate by selling your items? Just advertise it through your blog?