Your First Digital Product

Marketing your product with pillar content with Abby Herman

March 19, 2024 Rene Morozowich / Abby Herman Season 3 Episode 8
Marketing your product with pillar content with Abby Herman
Your First Digital Product
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Your First Digital Product
Marketing your product with pillar content with Abby Herman
Mar 19, 2024 Season 3 Episode 8
Rene Morozowich / Abby Herman

We're mixing it up today and instead of talking about Abby's digital products, she came on the show to talk about all things marketing. From creating pillar content to getting in front of other people's audiences, Abby answers all of my marketing questions!

Abby Herman is a fractional marketing director, content strategist and podcast manager for service-based businesses who want to gain more visibility for their businesses with personalized content strategies and implementation. She helps business owners let go of the day-to-day frustration around their marketing so her clients can get back to doing what they love in business. Abby is the voice behind The Content Experiment Podcast, where she features guests and solo episodes to talk about business growth and mindset, content strategy, and visibility for podcasters.

Links 🔗
- xkcd 10,000 comic
- Learn how to Ask Your Audience
- Visit Abby's website,
- Connect with Abby on Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn

Share a link to this episode 👉

Continue the conversation in your inbox

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

We're mixing it up today and instead of talking about Abby's digital products, she came on the show to talk about all things marketing. From creating pillar content to getting in front of other people's audiences, Abby answers all of my marketing questions!

Abby Herman is a fractional marketing director, content strategist and podcast manager for service-based businesses who want to gain more visibility for their businesses with personalized content strategies and implementation. She helps business owners let go of the day-to-day frustration around their marketing so her clients can get back to doing what they love in business. Abby is the voice behind The Content Experiment Podcast, where she features guests and solo episodes to talk about business growth and mindset, content strategy, and visibility for podcasters.

Links 🔗
- xkcd 10,000 comic
- Learn how to Ask Your Audience
- Visit Abby's website,
- Connect with Abby on Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn

Share a link to this episode 👉

Continue the conversation in your inbox

[00:00:00] Abby: So I recommend planning your content like 90 days in advance. So 90 days from today, you're gonna sell this thing. So what are the things that your audience needs to know or be able to do in order to make a decision to buy that product? So start talking about it, start sharing about it. Don't pitch anything, don't, you know, at this point early on, it's not coming soon. 

[00:00:23] It's nothing like that. You're just sharing, nurturing, growing your email list. Hopefully you have podcasts or things and you have a list that you're continually growing and then a couple weeks ahead of time.

[00:00:34] Then that's when just really start talking about the product itself and what wins people can get from it. And that's all prior to the actual launch itself. But when you have a product. If it's, especially if it's evergreen, it's something, you know, it's constant list, list building, constant, you know, engagement, constant nurturing of your, of your audience.

[00:00:58] Rene: Hey everyone. Welcome to Your First Digital Product, a show that helps maxed out service providers create their first digital product so they can gain an additional income stream, grow their impact without increasing one on one work, and experience more time freedom. On the show, I talk to business owners who have launched digital products and dig deep into how you can create, launch, and market your first digital product. I'm your host Rene Morozowich. Let's go!

[00:01:26] Hey everybody. Today I'm here with Abby Herman.

[00:01:28] And Abby is a fractional marketing director, content strategist, and podcast manager for business owners who wanna gain visibility for their businesses with personalized content strategies and implementation. She is also the host of the Content Experiment podcast. Hey Abby, how are you?

[00:01:44] Abby: Hi. I am good. How are you?

[00:01:46] Rene: I am good, thanks.

[00:01:47] I'm so excited you're here. So just to kind of let the audience know, this will be a different kind of episode. Typically, when I have someone else on the podcast, they're talking about their digital products. And while you have digital products, [00:02:00] that's not what we're gonna talk about today. We're gonna talk about marketing those products.

[00:02:03] So I'm really excited and think that the audience will get a lot out of this. But before I dive in there and start asking you a ton of questions, do you wanna tell us a little bit about yourself?

[00:02:12] Abby: Yeah, sure. So yeah, like you said, I'm, I'm Abby Herman. My business is the Content Experiment, and as you'll find out during the interview, the reason for the business being named that, which is kind of unusual is that I think that like this whole content and marketing piece is kind of like a big experiment.

[00:02:29] Like we have to, we can't just say, this is the plan, this is what we're gonna do.

[00:02:33] And we're gonna go down this path because everything changes all of the time. And so it's really important to change along with the world, our lives, the industry, our products, the people we serve, all of that. So I'm based in Phoenix and yeah. And I've been doing this for a long time.

[00:02:53] Rene: That's awesome. Yeah, so you've probably seen a lot of those changes 

[00:02:55] Abby: Oh yeah. 

[00:02:56] Rene: come through. Yeah, and I love that because I totally agree. I don't think that there's any one, like you need to be on this social platform and you need to post this many times a month and you need to engage on 14 different accounts.

[00:03:09] Like, you know, like I don't think that there's any one list of things. And I don't think we wanna do that. And even if there was, I don't think we, everybody wants to do it the same way anyway. So that is awesome. So I love that. Yeah. Experiment. Very cool. So. I'm not sure where we wanna start because this is a different sort of episode.

[00:03:26] So I don't know if, do you just kind of wanna tell us a little bit about marketing digital products and then I can kind of like ask all of my burning questions?

[00:03:34] Abby: Sure. So I think, and this kind of relates to what you were just saying, the most important thing to remember for anyone marketing services or products, or a combination of the two, is that you do not have to be everywhere. You do not have to do all of the things. In fact, I highly recommend that you don't because you'll burn yourself out. 

[00:03:59] I like to talk [00:04:00] about it's called minimum viable content marketing, which, what are, what are, like, what's the bare minimum that I quote, unquote should or need to do in my business in order to sell products or, you know, digital products. 

[00:04:15] And so if you want, I can kind of run through what looks like. So I, and this is, you know, coming from someone who has, I mean, I've, I've been in business 10 years, full time. I've been doing this since 2007, and so I've kind of seen lots of different iterations of, you know, what marketing is. And I honestly think that the bare bones, the things that we were doing even 10 years ago can still work today as long as you kind of tweak and change it for new technology and things like that. So I believe that every business owner should have, and yes, I'm gonna say the word should, I'm gonna, should everybody, I really do believe that this is like key to getting yourself out there because if you're selling something, you need to have an audience.

[00:05:03] You to get in front of people.

[00:05:05] Rene: You have to have people to sell to. Yes.

[00:05:08] Abby: Absolutely. I think everybody needs to have some sort of I call it like pillar content, the place where they own their own content, and that's a podcast, a YouTube channel or a blog. And I think we all know how popular podcasts and YouTube channels are right now.

[00:05:23] I think blogs, I, I don't think that they are not working. I just don't think that they work for everyone. And there are ways that you can kind of combine your podcast and your blog together.

[00:05:34] So but you wanna be able to own your content. You can't rely on social media alone or at all.

[00:05:41] Rene: Mm-Hmm. Yes. 

[00:05:42] Abby: Can say at all? To sell to sell digital products. You just can't because we don't own it. In fact, I was talking to a team member just this morning about, about a client's content that she's like, I put it in there, I formatted it wasn't showing up on Facebook or Instagram correctly. [00:06:00] And she's like, and we're like, something must have changed. Like they must have changed some sort of formatting. You never know when things are gonna change.

[00:06:06] So have some content that you own. That belongs to you, that you can use to kind of share your message. That's like number one super important. And then from there, you wanna be able to grow your email list. So you have some sort of free offer that you can give to people when they find your website, when they find your podcast or your YouTube channel. When they find your social media posts, when you're a guest on somebody else's podcast or a YouTube channel or whatever. Have something that you can give away for free so that you can grow your email list, because we need to have an audience that we can get to

[00:06:42] Rene: Mm-Hmm.

[00:06:43] Abby: directly and email is one of the best ways to do that. So, you need to have some sort of email software and an opt-in for that. And then have some sort of welcome sequence when they get that initial offer. So I know a lot of digital products people have like funnels things like that, that they put people through to get them to the digital product. That's perfect. Like have something where you can introduce yourself, where you can share some content you can share, some wins that they might be able to experience right away that your new readers might be able to experience right away. Have something like that and then continue to nurture them. 

[00:07:21] So, continue to send emails, not just when you're selling not just when you're launching something, not when you're just like promoting something. Have regular emails that go out, that share your own insights, your own wins, your own story, and things that they can do, that your subscribers can do to also get their wins. So that was a lot. So just to recap the things that I think are most important in this, in minimum viable content marketing are your pillar content.

[00:07:53] So your blog, your YouTube channel, or your podcast. Some sort of opt-in. Some sort of free [00:08:00] offer, and which means you also need to have a welcome sequence from that. And a some nurturing emails that you're sending. I would say minimum every other week, weekly if you can. So that's only four things.

[00:08:14] And notice, like social media was not part of that.

[00:08:17] Rene: Yes, exactly. Taking copious notes here so I can ask all of my questions.

[00:08:22] Abby: I think social media is is, I think it's nice to be active on social media. It's nice to interact with other people's content. It's nice to you know, find customers there, but especially if you're selling a digital product, depending on the price point, that's a lot of interaction 'cause if you want to, if you're selling a kind of a, a low priced or a low price bundle of some sort of digital products, you want to grow a big list, you want to have a lot of people looking at your stuff. And it's really hard to interact with that many people. Like I primarily provide a service to clients, so at a high ticket service, so, or medium to high ticket. So like it's easier for me to engage. 

[00:09:13] When you're trying to interact with a lot of people, it's really hard. That's where email comes in. And you can also take your content that you're publishing on your podcast or your YouTube channel and repurpose it for social media posts. You know, both in video, audio form or in like, you know, graphics or even some narrative posts, things like that where you're like long form text.

[00:09:37] So you can do that and ChatGPT is really helpful in helping to create those. I wouldn't rely solely on it, but it's really helpful.

[00:09:45] But like, I don't think social media is not a strategy. It's not something that you should rely on heavily.

[00:09:50] And the other thing that I didn't mention that is super important is getting in front of other people's audiences 'cause you wanna grow your audience, so you want to get on [00:10:00] other people's podcasts. You want to, participate in some of the bundle giveaways that they, you know, that are out there. Be on summits, things like that. Get your face and your voice in front of other people as part of that marketing strategy. But like, like I said, just go back to um, my original soapbox, social social media's not the end all.

[00:10:24] You don't have to be everywhere. Figure out where your audience is and show up there. If you, you know, if, if social media is where you want to be, figure out where your audience is first and then, and then be there. So.

[00:10:37] Rene: Okay, perfect. Okay. No, it's good 'cause I have all the questions and my, I ran out of space on the page, so now it's probably good. Yeah. Okay. All right. So my first question is what, how exactly would you define pillar content? So what is something you know, that we can, and then how much is a good amount of that pillar content?

[00:10:59] Abby: Yeah, I'll start with your second question first. So the amount that you create is truly dependent on what you can do as a business owner. Like what can you commit to?

[00:11:12] Rene: Mm. Yeah.

[00:11:13] Abby: You know? I mean, I used to say, you need to have a week. You know, whatever you do, it needs to be weekly. I used to say that, but the reality is that that's not like

[00:11:22] That's, yeah, that's a lot for some people. You can hire somebody to help. You know, that's something that I do is I help support clients and things like that in creating weekly content. However, not everybody can do that.

[00:11:36] Not everybody wants to do that. 'cause even if you have a podcast, like you still have to record. Nobody, nobody's gonna do that for you.

[00:11:43] So it, it can become a lot and it can become expensive. So figure out like, what can you commit to first? And now I forgot your first question.

[00:11:53] Rene: Just kind of like, what, what would you consider the definition of pillar content like?

[00:11:58] Abby: Pillar content [00:12:00] is, well, like I said, it's, it's the content that you own. So it's, it's your you own the content that you put on your blog. So because you're writing that. You own the content that you are publishing on your podcast, even though there's a third party that's actually releasing the podcast to all the podcast apps, it's still your content and then the YouTube channel, you own the video that you're uploading there. And YouTube is a search engine, so I still consider that content that you own. On the other hand, if you're thinking of pillar content in terms of like the topics.

[00:12:32] Rene: Yeah, that's kind of where what I was thinking. I like, you know, do you mean certain topics or, yeah. 

[00:12:36] Abby: Yeah. So, so on in WordPress and I don't know if it's still called this on WordPress, but it's like cornerstone content, like big ideas. So what are, so I call these zones of genius. What are the big, like four or five areas that you um, talk about all of the time on your podcast, your blog, your YouTube channel. What are the big ideas that your audience needs to know? Like what are the big things that you believe in that you want to share? I would pick four or five and then brainstorm into like smaller topics below that. So like for you, it could be market, maybe one of them's marketing your digital product. Maybe one of them's like tools for your digital product. And of course.

[00:13:24] Rene: One of them is smaller

[00:13:26] Abby: okay.

[00:13:27] Rene: smaller products. Like your first product should be a smaller product. Like, not like you're making this too big, you're making it too hard. It's taking too long. So yeah, that's definitely one of my, my personal kind of mantras is Yeah. So ahead. Yeah. 

[00:13:42] Abby: So yeah. so then, so that would be like, let's say that that's, that's your three, maybe you have one more and you figure out all of the, what are all of the things that people need to know about smaller products? What are all the things that people need to know about marketing their digital products?

[00:13:57] What are all the things that people need to know about the different [00:14:00] tools that are out there for their digital products? And then you can, I mean, like you could have a heyday just brainstorming all of the ideas around that. I also recommend too to help find topics and help determine what your audience really needs to know is to go ask them, survey them to um, you know, try to get more information. You can use the words that they share in your marketing. It could kind of inform some of the products that you create down the road too. So there's a lot you can do with just like a, a quick survey of your audience.

[00:14:35] Rene: Yeah. And so you have to have an audience to be able to survey them. So that kind of leads into some of the other questions here. You mentioned, you know, having that free lead magnet and then doing, you know, welcome sequence or nurture sequence.

[00:14:49] Were you thinking that at the end or near the end of the welcome sequence there would be a sell for the product and or would the product exist maybe somewhere else on your website? If people already knew you, they were already interested, they could just get it there. Like, do you have any thoughts on that?

[00:15:04] Abby: Yeah. I mean, there's a lot of different ways that you could do it. You could have, like, I, I would make it a low, a low price to offer at the end of that welcome sequence, but that also means that everything else that you include in that sequence should lead up to that sale.

[00:15:20] So if you're selling like a toolkit of some sort. The emails in that welcome sequence should offer value around that toolkit before you actually go to sell 'cause you wanna prove to your audience that you can get a win for them. That what you have is of value. 

[00:15:38] So you wanna share that leading up to that. You could also direct them to other content that you have, other podcast episodes or YouTube videos or, or blogs that mention the toolkit or that talk about it in a way and, and have like a sales link there too.

[00:15:56] You could do both. Like there's a lot of different ways that you can do it. [00:16:00] I absolutely don't recommend putting any kind of sales link in the first couple of emails because nobody wants to be sold to right away.

[00:16:08] Rene: It is fast. 

[00:16:08] Abby: They want to get to know you. 

[00:16:09] Rene: Yeah. Yes, yes. You wanna warm them up a little bit. So how many emails then, do you think, like even just a regular welcome sequence, that doesn't sell something at the end. How many emails? 'cause I just kind of redid my, my welcome sequence. I'm like, I wonder how many emails I'm supposed to have. Do you have any thoughts on that?

[00:16:23] Abby: It depends. It depends on what you're selling. I have client that we're, we're kind of in the process of putting together like a year long sequence where there's, we're trying to turn some of the content more evergreen.

[00:16:36] So we're, we're just putting together this longer sequence so that the creation of the emails is not as time sensitive.

[00:16:46] It's kind of, you know, we just kind of repeat the emails for new people. But it could be like four or five.

[00:16:52] You know, that's usually right around four or five, sometimes up to seven. Again, it depends on, I have a client who has a seven seven video series that we've created. So every email in that welcome sequence, it actually ends up being eight emails because there's an extra one at the end. But, so every email has a video that goes out with like the next step of the thing that we're leading them to.

[00:17:15] Rene: Nice. I like it. I like that. And do you have any thoughts on days apart? That's another thing that kind of comes up sometimes is like, do I email them every day for seven days? 

[00:17:24] Abby: No. 

[00:17:25] Rene: Well in yeah. Some people are like, you should be emailing every day. And I'm like, no, that's not, I'm not in that camp.

[00:17:32] Yeah. Any thoughts about like, you know, should the first couple be closer together and then a little bit further out. 

[00:17:38] Abby: Yeah, you can't, it again, it depends on how long the sequence is, and it also depends on 'cause. So you have two choices. Do you want them to go through the whole email sequence, the whole welcome sequence before they start to get your regular nurture emails? Or do you want them to get the nurture emails at the same time as they're going through the welcome sequence? And so you have to [00:18:00] make a decision on that, and then make sure that the sequence doesn't land on the days that you are sending your regular nurture email. 

[00:18:09] And then, make sure that you've spread it out a little bit. So I like two to three days at the beginning, and then for a longer sequence, four to five days towards the end of the sequence. Again, it, it kind of depends what content is and how much other content you're putting out there too. So there's a of, there's a lot of, it depends.

[00:18:28] Rene: Mm-Hmm. Yeah. And that's fine. Yeah, that's perfectly fine. Okay. So you're using nurture in a in maybe a different way than I have heard it before. So I think maybe you're saying nurture in just like emails that you send weekly or, or every two weeks or, or, so. When I think, when I think of nurture, I think of a sequence that is meant to do a thing. That is meant to book a call. That is meant to sell a product. So is that, am I correct in that?

[00:18:59] Abby: Yes. Yeah. I consider nurture is you're staying in front of your audience.

[00:19:04] You nurturing them with new information. You're teaching them something, teaching them something new, and then the other sequence that you were talking about, I just kind of call that a sequence. It be a sales sequence, it could be launch sequence, something like that.

[00:19:19] But yeah, I, I look at those as two different things. If there's a, like a sales action at the end, then I would definitely call it more of a sales sequence or a, an opt-in sequence or something like that where you want them opt into a workshop or something like that. 

[00:19:35] Rene: Okay. So I was thinking of just, I have other questions in the list, but just kind of like a sidebar here. So if you have, so if you launch a product and then you have that launch sequence, like that seems to be very intuitive, right? Like, I'm launching on Thursday, the emails have been going out, and then they'll continue to go out, whatever it is, like around that time.

[00:19:54] Is that the only way to tell people about your product, [00:20:00] like what happens then next month and the month after that and a year from now? Like do people do, I dunno, relaunch series, like if it's an evergreen product, like what are some ways that, or some things that you can do, I guess instead of just like beyond just that first like launch, it's launched, like then what?

[00:20:19] Abby: Yeah. Well, so depending on how many products you have, you could include like, add it to your email footer both your email system that you use, like whether it's Active Campaign or ConvertKit or whatever. And then also in your, like, your regular email footer, like have a link there to your products. I have a client who, she has a free, like, she has a client resource directory, and we've included the, the product hasn't launched yet, but we've included a wait list at the bottom of that so people can opt in for and it's at the bottom. So every new person who joins her list will see that and, and have that, and it'll be included in some of the regular nurture emails that we send out also.

[00:21:04] Mention it in your other content, like continue to talk about it then again, like, just like you your minimum viable content marketing, show up on other people's podcasts. Like make sure you're continually working to grow your list because every time a new person joins your list. That's a new potential customer, a new potential person to buy that product.

[00:21:25] So, and again, like you mentioned, relaunches, so. If your product is, it doesn't necessarily have to be seasonal, but if it's more popular during a different, like a certain season of the year, that as an opportunity to relaunch or refresh your email sequences and things like that. So I think there's always opportunity. It's like, you know, you hear about business owners who write books. In fact, I just saw a social media post about this today. 

[00:21:54] Somebody I'm Facebook friends with who is in the, on this online business world, wrote a book a couple years ago [00:22:00] and she posted, I forgot I even wrote a book.

[00:22:02] Like, you have to keep marketing the book. You keep putting it out there because otherwise people won't know about it. So, yeah.

[00:22:10] Rene: And new people join, like you mentioned, people join your list. It's like, there was a, a comic somewhere that I saw. It's like the 10,000, like um, somebody is hearing about something. 10,000 people are hearing about something for the first time every day. If you say something on Tuesday, there is somebody who just comes into your orbit on Wednesday who didn't hear you on Tuesday.

[00:22:30] So they don't know about your thing. So I think that's another thing that might be one of my pillar content 'cause now I'm, that's in the back, back of my mind too, is like this isn't passive income. Like yes, it can be more passive than one-to-one work. Obviously one-to-one work is, is is different. But you know, you can, you still have to set up the email sequences.

[00:22:51] You still have to be a guest on the podcast. You still have to post the social media posts and continue to, you know, to mention these things. 

[00:22:58] Okay. Let's see what else I wanna ask. You mentioned bundles participating in bundles, and I was just talking about this with someone recently. So what else can you tell us about bundles? Are there some that you like or recommend? You know, are there certain products that go well with bundles and any, any thoughts that you wanna share about bundles?

[00:23:17] Abby: I think that the people who host the bundles usually have, like, they have their vision and of what they want to, the types of products they want to share. So I think it's really important to make sure. I mean, it, it doesn't take very much to participate in a bundle. You know, you fill out the form, you ha you create the graphic. You ha you already have the product.

[00:23:40] Rene: You have the product, right? Mm-Hmm.

[00:23:42] Abby: So it doesn't take very much. But where I have seen the most success is where the theme of the bundle, the product bundle is really aligned with the product itself. 

[00:23:54] I had a client who recently participated in a bundle and she saw [00:24:00] an over 10% growth in her already decent sized email list. Like the, the email list was already a good size and she saw 10% growth in that. And and it's because the person who hosted the bundle was so organized and had, I was really impressed 'cause I was on the actual marketing side of helping, you know, prepare everything and get everything loaded. And I was just really impressed with the organization. 

[00:24:25] And so we're able to take those new people who we tracked so we know exactly who those people are and we're able to turn around and we're actually gonna market something separate directly to group of people that really aligns with the product that we offered. And I'm just, I'm really excited about it. 

[00:24:44] So it's about like making sure, you know, everybody has, we've seen the bundles in Facebook groups. We've all probably gotten emails about them and contacted, been contacted about them, and it's just about finding what really resonates with you. And I would make sure if you haven't participated in a bundle before, to find somebody who you've seen them around a bit, because then they can kind of help you walk you through what that looks like and you'll have a lot more success. But definitely track the email addresses that you're getting.

[00:25:16] Rene: Okay. Yeah.

[00:25:17] Abby: So I think you asked how it works, but basically you, you contribute something for free. And, and people opt into your list in order to get that free thing. So it's usually like a, a product that's under $50 or under a hundred dollars, and you get the email list of all the people who sign up for your specific product. It's super easy to do with all the backend systems that product sellers already have.

[00:25:43] So, yeah.

[00:25:45] Rene: In your experience, has it been a product, you mentioned it's a product you already have created. Is it one that you are selling and actively marketing, or is it a product that's specifically for participating in bundles?

[00:25:57] Abby: It depends for this, this particular [00:26:00] client that I helped with this. It was a product that we were already marketing and selling and we were able to so then we offer it for free within, inside this bundle. Usually that's one of the requirements that it has to be something that you have are selling or have sold in the past.

[00:26:17] Can't be the a free opt-in that you already offer for free then there's no point opting in. So, yeah. 

[00:26:22] Rene: Right. Okay. Interesting. You mentioned needing to have more conversations with people maybe on social media to be able to sell a product versus selling a service. And that would probably go into like conversion rates, right? So you need you know, 200 visitors to your webpage to get four sales or whatever that is.

[00:26:44] So do you wanna talk at, do you have anything any thoughts on that about maybe tracking conversion rates or just, just that you also see that it takes a lot more views to a page to make a digital product sale than it does in a service business.

[00:27:01] Abby: Yeah, I mean, it, it, it definitely takes more. You need to have a bigger audience if you're sell a product, particularly the lower the, the price of the product, the more sales that you need to make. Right? Because if you have a, a 10, I'm terrible at math, but if you have a $10 product and you sell 10 of them, that's a hundred dollars. Meanwhile, maybe you have a service that's a hundred dollars. If you sell 10 of those, that's a thousand dollars. 

[00:27:28] You need to have, you know, in order to make a thousand dollars, you have to sell a hundred of those $10 products. So yeah, you definitely need a bigger a wider net in order to make the sales that you probably want to make. And, you know. This isn't a a product that I've sold. But when I think back to, I don't know, like eight or so years ago in business or maybe seven, I wanted to be Amy Porterfield.

[00:27:55] I wanted, I was listening to her podcast. I was writing a lot of [00:28:00] blogs. I was, this is pre before I started my podcast, and she has a freebie, or at least she used to to have a, a freebie for almost every single episode. So I was like trying to, trying to 

[00:28:13] Rene: Can you imagine?

[00:28:13] Abby: These, yeah, no, I was trying to create these things and at the time it was only me and my business, and I'm trying to all of these, these digital downloads and things like that. And it was chaos. It was chaos in my brain.

[00:28:26] It was chaos on my website, in my you know, in my email provider. It was total chaos. And when you think about like selling really low priced digital products and having, trying to like create a whole bunch of them. I personally, I wouldn't be able to keep track of them.

[00:28:42] Like that would be a lot for me. I know that a lot of people are really successful in doing that. I will never be that person.

[00:28:49] Rene: It's hard.

[00:28:50] Abby: Kudos to the people who are, but yeah, like think about the price of what you're offering and how many people you need to attract in order to sell that, in order to make a profit and to not be sitting at your desk working.

[00:29:03] And if you have a team who is helping, awesome. That's fantastic. Like that, that's where the gold is. But I, I personally, I think it's really difficult for, it would be really difficult for me to get to that point. So.

[00:29:17] Rene: Right. Yeah, that makes sense. Yeah. I mean, yeah, you don't have, I mean, Amy Porterfield's team, I mean like it's just a different. 

[00:29:23] Abby: Thinking about that. I was just. 

[00:29:25] Rene: Situation. 

[00:29:25] Abby: She is doing all of this. I do it too. No, I can't. 

[00:29:29] Rene: Yeah, even having, as soon as you add more than one opt-in, sometimes things go hairy. Like, I think maybe, I don't know, maybe it's like having kids, like when you have two and then you have three. I'm not sure. I only have one. 

[00:29:40] Abby: I only have one also. 

[00:29:42] Rene: Okay. So we don't know. Don't ask us. But yes, I think, you know, you have one and it's, it's the way it is and then you add two and you're like, okay, wait. Like I just, I helped a client recently. She wanted to add additional freebies. She wants to test them out seasonally, so we had to pull the y you know, they, they delivered the [00:30:00] email, the, the freebie, and then the welcome sequence was just attached to it. But I didn't wanna replicate the welcome sequence for a different freebie where she had to manage, you know, two sets. So then we created this sort of Y situation where like you get each freebie and then you're funneled into a welcome sequence.

[00:30:15] So, you know, it gets a little bit, there's some planning involved and some structural things that you, because you wanna make it easy for yourself later to go into your platform and say, okay, this is the next thing I wanna do. Instead of like, wait, what's happening here? Like, I don't know what emails are being sent and I'm not sure what's being said.

[00:30:32] Yeah, that can be, it takes some organization, I think, all of this. 

[00:30:37] Abby: For all of all of it. 

[00:30:38] Rene: Yes. Absolutely. Okay, so let's see. How do you know if the marketing is working? I mean, yes, sales,

[00:30:45] Abby: Mm-Hmm.

[00:30:46] Rene: but are there other things and how do you know if it's enough sales, I suppose, or the customer life cycle where, you know, we want somebody to meet us and then buy our product immediately, and that's not really how it works.

[00:31:01] Abby: Right, right. 

[00:31:02] Rene: Have any thoughts on any of those things?

[00:31:04] Abby: Yeah, well, I mean, to figure out how many, is it enough sales? Well, I think that that's looking at your numbers and figuring out, and, and I'm not the person to ask about this, but figuring out like, you know, what do you, what do you need to bring home? 

[00:31:18] I'm a big proponent of, of pay yourself a living wage and, know, make sure that you're paying yourself and that your finances are totally separate, personal and business.

[00:31:27] Rene: Yes.

[00:31:27] Abby: But that's a whole nother, that's a whole nother podcast episode. So, but knowing how much, how much you need to bring in is super important. 

[00:31:34] But as far as tracking, there are a lot of different ways to track and you need to determine what's the most important. I think that probably one of the more important things to track is your email list and making sure that you're continuing to grow the email list because the email list will eventually lead, lead to sales. Size is important, yes, but engagement is more important. So [00:32:00] what do your open rates look like?

[00:32:01] Are people clicking on things when they open your emails? That's super important. So looking at that on a regular basis, have some sort of, like dashboard, we use like an Excel spreadsheet.

[00:32:13] Have a dashboard set up where you're tracking going in and looking at that once a week. My assistant and I have a Wednesday date work with me Wednesday date where we sit and we do that together.

[00:32:23] So that we can take a look at what's working and what's not. And if you're not seeing the open rates that you want to see, then I would say look at your subject lines. Are they engaging? Do people wanna open them? How often are you emailing? Are you emailing every day?

[00:32:40] Stop. 

[00:32:41] Rene: Mm-Hmm. Yes. People really want you to email every day. I swear. Like all of this. They're email daily. Email daily. I'm like, oh my God. I will unsubscribe. If you email me daily, I will unsubscribe. 

[00:32:51] Abby: Yes. Yes. So yeah, don't email daily, like switch to, if you feel like you really want to email daily, switch to twice a week and try that for a little while.

[00:33:02] Try that for three months and then, and see how it works. But 'cause people don't have time. If you're emailing every day and I'm emailing every day, and three other people are, the same person's getting all those emails. It's too much.

[00:33:14] So yeah, so look at your open rates. Look at the click-through rates. If your click-through rates, and that's where people are clicking on the link to buy or clicking on the link to go to a piece of content. If those are low inside your emails, then I would look at how many links do I have in the email?

[00:33:30] Is there too many? So you don't really, you don't want a whole bunch of links because people have decision fatigue. It's like looking in your closet. Well, which T-shirt am I gonna wear today? I have 18 of 'em. So I, you know, it's it's decision to fatigue. I can only wear one shirt at a time, so the other 17 are just gonna sit there. I'm only gonna click on one thing at a time.

[00:33:53] The other links are just gonna sit there and I'm gonna forget about it because I have too many other things going on in my [00:34:00] computer screen. Look at like, you know, where is the link that you want them to click? Where is it placed in the email? Maybe you need to move it up and have a button, you know, whatever. 

[00:34:11] So those are really important things to track. And then the other thing that I think is really important to track because obviously being on somebody's podcast takes time. If you're pitching to be on podcasts, that takes time too, so what is the value of the podcasts that you're on? Are you choosing to be on the right types of podcasts? 

[00:34:31] And so the way I track that is, and, and it's different for different systems, but I use pretty links inside my, like it's a plugin for your website. It's free. I use the free version. And so when I, mention a link on a podcast. I will use a pretty link so I know which podcast episodes went to like grew my list the most. 

[00:34:56] Rene: Mm-Hmm.

[00:34:56] Abby: So that's really helpful to do. You can also do that with bundles and you can do, and that doesn't mess up like. You don't have to add an ex, you don't necessarily have to add an extra tag in your email system, you can, but you don't necessarily have to. It's, you just can see how many people have clicked on the link or typed the link into their browser or something.

[00:35:15] So super helpful. That way, you know, like the time that you spent researching podcasts or pitching a podcast or like actually being on a podcast was really VA like this particular type of podcast was really valuable. then you can go find more that are like that. 

[00:35:30] Rene: Of those. Okay. Okay. Yeah, that was my question, because you've already been on the podcast. If it didn't do well for you, then yeah. What is your action step though? Okay. Yeah. So that makes sense. Do you have more to say about podcasts? Like, I know podcast guesting is great and like how, any, any thoughts about that that you want to share about, you know, as far as getting in front of other audiences and stuff like that?

[00:35:51] Abby: Yeah, I mean, if you have a podcast, one of the best things you can do for your own pod podcast is to be on other people's podcasts because it's such a [00:36:00] natural transition. You know, some, you know, listeners are already listening, and so if I mention my podcast, The Content Experiment.

[00:36:07] Rene: Mm-Hmm. 

[00:36:08] Abby: You know, it's really easy 'cause you're already there. You're already on the app, on your phone, or yeah, just go over and subscribe and you'll get notified when, or it'll pop up on your feed the next time I release an episode. So, yeah, it's just, it's really easy. And if somebody is listening to a podcast, oftentimes that's their preferred way to receive content or consume content.

[00:36:29] And so, you know, they're a podcast listener, come listen to my podcast too. It just is a natural transition and it's just, it's easy, it's it's fun. I think it's fun you know, I mean, Yeah. I don't, I know I don't do enough of it so.

[00:36:44] Rene: It's hard. It's hard to find, I think the ones, and it's hard to, you know, there's a lot of scheduling involved. You, obviously there's time, there's time involved, but yeah, I think it's fun.

[00:36:53] Abby: Yeah. Well and also too, like, not to pat myself on the back, but but I'm going to for a minute now. I think it's just really easy to talk about your products. You know, throughout this episode I've talked a little bit about my services and some of that I've done with clients, and hopefully it hasn't sound sounded salesy.

[00:37:13] Because I truly want to like give examples, but those examples might resonate with someone. So as you're if you are a guest, even if you don't have a podcast, if you're a guest on somebody's podcast, share some of the successes that you've seen, share some of those things because that's what people want to hear, and that's what will drive them, hopefully to your website or to your products to to buy them or to get on your email list. So. 

[00:37:40] Rene: Yeah. And that's kind of like maybe your pillar content, like the things that you always want to talk about, that message that you want to share specifically about your area of expertise. Like, you know, you are into content and, but there's specific ways that you recommend that people create content or specific types of content.

[00:37:57] Like you have a framework kind of around it, you and I have [00:38:00] thoughts yeah about digital products. Like, don't start with a course. You've never done this before. Why would you start with a course? Like, I swear every episode we're talking about this. So I just think that people have thoughts about like, when you think digital product, you think course, know, and that's just one, one thing.

[00:38:15] And while courses can be really successful, they can be harder to market like you just don't know the technology. You don't know your audience quite in that way, like especially as a service provider, you've been providing a service for a long time and you're established at it and you know what you're doing, but products are different.

[00:38:31] Like it's just a different kind of ballgame. So that's why my, my start small sort of soapbox there.

[00:38:38] Abby: Yes. I love it. I totally agree.

[00:38:41] Rene: Yay. Okay, cool. Okay. So do any last things, I guess, do you wanna say before I ask you for your advice what two to three things you recommend for someone who is marketing their first product?

[00:38:52] Abby: No, I don't think so.

[00:38:53] Rene: Okay. 

[00:38:53] Abby: I think we've covered a 

[00:38:54] Rene: Okay. Yeah.

[00:38:56] Abby: a huge amount of information. I don't wanna totally overwhelm anybody.

[00:38:59] Rene: Yeah. No, it's, I know, yes. It's hard because you're like, oh, but here's everything I know. You know, you wanna share it. So, yeah, I, I totally get that. Yeah. Okay, so let's picture this person out there who has not created anything yet. They just created their product. They are maybe in, they're thinking about marketing, right?

[00:39:13] So maybe they're creating their product and hopefully they're thinking about marketing before they launch it, know? So what kind of things can they do maybe during the creation process that would support marketing at launch time and then ongoing later?

[00:39:28] Abby: Yes. Well, so I think that the very first thing to do it, if you haven't done it yet, is to talk to your audience. Survey them to figure out where are they hanging out, what type of content do they want to receive, what are their challenges around whatever you're offering, whatever, you know, type of when you're helping them with in the whole process.

[00:39:52] And I actually have, I actually have a, a tool for that, that people can download for free. So here I am putting, putting my thing [00:40:00] out there with my pretty And that's RENE, right. 

[00:40:05] Rene: Yep. RENE. Yep. Mm-Hmm. 

[00:40:06] Abby: So yeah, they can get, I, I call it Ask Your Audience so you can download that.

[00:40:11] It actually goes against what I was saying about sending an email every day. So it's five days in a row that you get with the next step 

[00:40:19] Rene: Okay.

[00:40:19] Abby: how to survey your audience. So it's homework in between, so, but it's totally free.

[00:40:24] So talk to your audience, make sure you know where they're hanging out. Well before you are ready to launch, start sharing information around whatever you're offering. So I recommend planning your content like 90 days in advance. So 90 days from today, you're gonna sell this thing. So what are the things that your audience needs to know or be able to do in order to make a decision to buy that product? So start talking about it, start sharing about it. Don't pitch anything, don't, you know, at this point early on, it's not coming soon. 

[00:41:02] It's nothing like that. You're just sharing, nurturing, growing your email list. Hopefully you have podcasts or things and you have a list that you're continually growing and then a couple weeks ahead of time.

[00:41:13] Then that's when just really start talking about the product itself and what wins people can get from it. And that's all prior to the actual launch itself. But when you have a product. If it's, especially if it's evergreen, it's something, you know, it's constant list, list building, constant, you know, engagement, constant nurturing of your, of your audience.

[00:41:37] Rene: Yeah. Don't forget you have the product.

[00:41:39] Abby: Yes.

[00:41:40] Rene: Because if you forget, other people will forget too or maybe just never know to begin with. So awesome. Yay. Okay, great. So do you have any other links or do you wanna say that link again? Tell us where we can find you online, connect with you, what platforms and so on.

[00:41:52] Abby: It's, RENE. And you can get the ask your, I call it the Ask your Audience Challenge. [00:42:00] So you'll get a series of emails that teaches you, and that actually I actually have templates that you can use for Airtable and Google Forms to build your own survey using the information that's already provided. 

[00:42:11] So yeah, it's super easy. And yeah, you can find me at thecontentexperiment. I'm on Instagram at thecontentexperiment and I'm on LinkedIn at Abby M Herman. I don't use a business page on linkedIn 'cause more, I want to be more personal. So.

[00:42:24] Rene: Yeah, it's, I never know about the business page. A personal page. It's, yeah, there's, yeah, it's definitely a thing. So. Awesome. Well, thank you so much. This has been so valuable. I've taken a ton of notes and I love to go back through the episode too and kind of like, and I'll comb out anything and kind of summarize, so that's awesome.

[00:42:38] So thank you so much for your time.

[00:42:39] Abby: Yeah. Thank you.

[00:42:40] Rene: Hey, thanks for listening. I'd love to continue the conversation in your inbox. Email SUBSCRIBE to hey at or sign up in the show notes to get bi monthly emails about how you can create, launch, and market your first digital product. Can't wait to see you there.

90 days of content
It's a different kind of episode!
A big experiment
You don't have to be everywhere or do everything
Pillar content, content that you own
Getting in front of other people's audiences
How much can you commit to?
More on pillar content
Where in your email sequence do you sell your product?
More on email sequences
What happens after your launch series?
Conversations and conversion rates
Using tracking to see if your marketing is working
Abby's advice