How to Create Your Signature Product

Tim Ferriss has his 4-Hour Work Week; Pat Flynn has his Smart Passive Income website; John Lee Dumas has his Entrepreneur On Fire podcast. Every influencer you can think of has a signature product. It’s what put them on the map and got them noticed. What’s your signature product? It will be what you’re known-for, it’s your shortcut to succeeding in monetizing your know-how. It’s easy to be distracted, to concentrate on the wrong things to grow your reputation, but the best way is to create a product that delivers huge value to your audience.

A signature product can catapult you to success

  1. A signature product is a shortcut to success. One of the best ways to gain recognition, build authority and be the go-to person in your field is to create a high-quality product that solves a pressing problem for your audience. What do you charge for that you could convert into an online course or a book?
  2. Be passionate about what you do. Loving what you do is the best motivator out there. If you are – and you should be – producing a product that you’re genuinely passionate about, you’re going to put much more energy and effort into something that does not inspires you. This will translate into creating a high-price course with greater focus on developing product features, delivering benefits and more investment into learning about customers’ needs and expectations.
  3. Learn all you can about your audience. The information that you gather whilst researching your audience is a rich source of future product ideas. Listening to, and interacting with, your audience is the first step in creating your signature product to solve their problems. The solution that you’ll be offering is going to be your signature product, and it needs to take into account the specific needs of your specific target group. If the same question appears frequently, if your audience repeatedly encounters the same problems, that’s the product idea you should run with.
  4. Know what you’re offering. When you interact with your audience, you have to have an answer to as many possible queries they might have about your product as possible (preferably even to all of them). Put yourself in their shoes by creating a customer avatar and have a think about what you would want to know about your product. Taking this point of view will help you identify any gaps in your signature product that you need to address.
  5. Map everything out. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the useful information in your head. What do you include in your product? What do you leave out? In what order do you teach a topic? Here’s an effective, proven way to plan your signature product to include all vital information and exclude any fluff.
  6. Create the product. Once you have your product mapped out, you need to stop procrastinating and start working. Of course, it is possible that as you begin, you will have more questions than answers. Don’t be discouraged or distracted by this – product development is a learning process just like any other. Instead, make a quick note of what’s missing and carry on working. Don’t stop for more “research” – that’s procrastination. Keep working. Don’t worry about editing and combing through the draft product either – there will be time for that later.
  7. Give it a title. This is a significant step. The name of your signature product is going to be the name people will remember, and an extension of your personal brand. It should be easily recognisable, memorable and a reflection of what you stand for and what you can offer. Here are some tips for writing persuasive titles/headlines.
  8. Test by offering it free. Customers love freebies. Offering a free sample to a small group of people – the first ten to sign up to the launch event, for instance – in return for a testimonial is a good way to promote your product. Make sure to gather feedback after you test the product because it is going to help you identify initial gaps in the product that you can address at a later stage.
  9. Work on developing it. No debut product is going to be perfect, and that’s fine. The features that you’re going to add at a later stage that enhance the product and/or make it more relevant for new segments of your target audience are going to be an addition to your signature product and your personal brand. They will also show the audience that you listen to them, which will help you with building trust and expanding your goodwill.

Takeaway points

  1. Creating a signature product is a major undertaking but it’s an important (and rewarding) exercise.
  2. The most important thing to take into account is the needs of your audience. Make sure your product is a response to what your audience needs, not what you think they need.
  3. Give great thought to the title of your product – it can have a huge impact on sales. Tim Ferriss came up with hundreds of titles before settling on “The 4 Hour Work Week”.

Action steps

  1. Plan to interview your target audience – make some hypotheses about what they would want, create some general and specific questions about what they’d want from you and what they like/don’t like about you.
  2. Map out your product. (See #5 above).
  3. Make a list of your personal brand’s key benefits and features and start thinking of a name for your product.

Photo credit: Jonathan Grado via / CC BY-SA 2.0

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