In this article I will introduce you, the business owner, to how it is possible for an bricks and mortar business, or a service business, to add value to itself by adding Digital Products to its inventory of business assets. A business can stay the same and achieve the results its always achieved, or it can look at what the wide and vast world of Digital can do to add customer engagement, customer knowledge, brand recognition and ultimately more sales. As examples I use an Air Conditioner business, and a Farrier business, to show how all businesses, micro, one man, or medium size can add digital products as assets to their business.
In this blog I’ll show you three ways that an existing, so called traditional business may be able to add to its reportoire.
- Write an eBook for you customers
- Create an online store
- Produce a Webinar
Any business can explore ways to increase its asset base and customer engagement by utilising digital products. These digital products can become valuable assets to a business. Of course, the business website is the most valuable digital asset a business can have. Central to its customer engagement strategy, a website can then interact with numerous digital products available to add more credibility in the marketplace, to speed up the buyers comfort in purchasing goods and services, and ultimately increase its total revenue and potentially increase its profit margin.
In this article we cover three additions, one very simple eBook, a more advanced strategy of an online storefront, and a very undervalued tool called a webinar.
A business eBook
Every business has a topic it can utilise to produce an eBook. An eBook could be something as simple as an overview of the industry they are in, or some information about the products they install. For example, say you are a Air Conditioner installer and repairer, you could produce a brief eBook on the different types of air conditioners available. You could provide information on how to choose between a split system and a ducted air conditioning unit. 6 to 7 pages of good solid information about what these products are great and doing.
Producing the eBook is not that hard. If you have a look at one of our business customers sites www.sharpair.com.au for example, you will see that we have already produced four articles that are information articles on air conditioners. With a little tweaking, we can pull that into one single document, being word, or powerpoint, and edit the document so it reads well in a logical order. Having that available then for potential customers to aid in their decision in wether to install a split system or a ducted system for example. By providing the knowledge, it is likely that the customer will engage with you to quote / discuss their needs for their air conditioning. This moves the business away from a price position only and moves them into a trusted advisor role.
By starting off as having your website as your hub, it is easy to then expand your business assets to now having the website, the ebook, and more customers, that in the case of the air conditioning business, then go onto service mode for 5 to 7 years before once again engaging the customer for when and if their air conditioning unit requires upgrading or replacing.
An online store
An online store can be a great way to expand your business. Take a farrier for example, how could a farrier (a person who puts shoes on horses) possibly be able to find products to sell online?
A farrier could offer the following;
- an eBook on barefoot trimming and hoof maintenance
- sell rasps
- sell hoof picks
- sell hoof lacquer (like nail polish but for horses
- nutrition for horses feet
- discount vouchers for new customer recommendations
On top of this the farrier could drop these purchases off whilst on his rounds / client visit.
By monetising other associated products and services, they can engage with their existing customer base, expand the customer base (if required), and produce more income per customer. If the eBook is received well by the market, then the farrier can actually receive true passive income from that eBook by selling to people who aren’t in his area of travel, or who only do their horses feet themselves. That way the people who the farrier was not initially engaging with may now potentially recommend and supply equipment such as rasps and picks, plus hoof lacquer and nutritional supplements for hoof growth and care.
Produce a Webinar
A webinar is a great way for a business to engage with its customer base. A webinar is a recording of a presentation including material and the presenter teaching or explaining the content. Having the presenter, preferable the subject matter expert speaking and explaining the concepts provides potential and existing customers with first hand experience dealing with you, and becoming comfortable that you know your subject.
Returning to our Air Conditioning business, expanding the eBook into a Webinar, is easily achieved, and having the information explained verbally about how they work, getting further in depth on how an inverter works for example, will provide a potential customer with comfort that you can assist them in their needs.
A webinar does take time to record, and edit. These webinars can be released onto YouTube, your own website and if deemed to be more of an educational product could also be sold via websites such as udemy for example. By expanding the initial course into more detailed ones such as Regular Maintenance Tasks” for example, customers can learn what simple tasks could be completed, how they are done, and then armed with that knowledge, still call you to maintain their system, because even though they know how to do the simple tasks, you explain to them the important activities that only a true craftsman in the industry knows what to look for and how that ultimately saves their customer money.
Summary of the three digital products for your business
In this article, I have briefly explained how it is possible for businesses that you would not expect to be able to add digital assets to their business. By having a website as your central asset, I have shown you three products, the eBook, the web store, and a webinar to any business that can be built that will add customer engagement, add value to your business and ultimately improve your profit and business valuation.
For any questions or feedback on this article please contact David at firstname.lastname@example.org. Here at Bluegum Digital we are always looking at ways we can help your business expand into the digital world creating value for your business.
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