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Making and selling digital products (What you need to do before you start)


There’s never been a better time to start selling digital products, and maybe you’ve been thinking about jumping in with a product of your own. In this video, we’ll talk about three things you should definitely consider doing before launching your digital product, so you can make it even better and reach more people. Let’s get into it.

Welcome to “First sale to full scale,” a 10-video series that covers the journey from making your first digital product to running a full-scale online business. If you’re thinking about making your first product, this video is a great starting point.

Ahead, we’re going to cover 3 essential steps prior to making your first digital product, finding your audience, sharing free content, and building an email list.

First, let’s talk about finding your audience

Determining who your audience is (and who they’re not) can be a challenging first step. Many first-time digital entrepreneurs have a difficult time narrowing down to a specific group. They think, “my audience can be anyone.” And it seems like it makes sense… cast a wider net, gather more fish, right?

But if you don’t define who you’re trying to reach, your audience will have trouble trusting that your content, products, or platform are a perfect fit for them. The more specific you are, the easier it is for the right people to find you.

Now that we’ve established that getting specific is a good thing, let’s answer the following questions to help us determine who we’re trying to reach.

What are you passionate about?

This is a great place to start because when it comes to sharing content or building products, the things you’re most passionate about are the things people will resonate with the most. If you’re passionate about something, the audience you want to reach will also be passionate about it.

What are your skills?

What is something you’re good at? You don’t have to be the best in the world, just better or more experienced than the people you’re trying to reach. Where your passion meets your skills, you’ll find people who are eager to learn what you know.

What is your current expertise level?

Many people think that you have to be a level 10 expert in order to teach something, but a level 10 expert is going to have a harder time relating to the struggles of a beginner than someone who is a level 3 or 4. Knowing your level of expertise can help you determine the level your audience would have to be to most benefit from what you know.

Second, share free content

Now that you know who you’re trying to reach, it’s time to attract those people by sharing valuable free content, or content marketing, which can begin even before you’ve got a product to sell. In fact, it can be one of the key ways you discover what kind of product your audience would be willing to buy.

There are many different ways to share content with your audience–blog articles, podcasts, videos, graphics, social media posts–and it’s likely that each of these methods would reach some portion of your audience. But if you’re just starting out, it’s best to start with one medium and build from there.

Choose the one you think fits best after asking these three questions:

  1. Which medium do I already know how to use?

  2. Which medium do I most enjoy using?

  3. Which medium does my audience prefer?

Once you’ve determined where and how you’re going to reach your audience, you can begin the process of growing an audience that you own. An email list is still one of the best ways to do that, so in our final step, we’re going to talk about growing an email list.

By the way, we post new videos every week designed to help creators just like you. If you’re finding the information in this video helpful, subscribe and hit the notification bell so you don’t miss any future videos. Now on to our last step.

Third, build an email list

Email allows you to build a stronger connection with your audience and makes it easier to develop, market, and sell products. A report from McKinsey & Company says that email is 40x more effective as a marketing tool than Facebook or Twitter.

So how do you get people to sign up?

First, let people know you have an email list. As a part of your content marketing, make it a point to mention your email list every once in a while.

Second, give people a reason to sign up. You can share exclusive or early access to some of your content. You can also create a free digital lead magnet that will automatically be sent to them when they sign up.

If you don’t already have a lead magnet, you can use a free tool on our website, at, and follow the steps to create something simple and valuable to offer subscribers. Once you’ve finished, we’ll email you a pdf version of your digital download.

Third, make it easy for people to sign up. It’s important for the signup process to be as simple as possible. With Podia’s email marketing tool, you can add an email list signup form to your Podia site with the click of a button.

Folks who want to subscribe only have to enter their email address and click “Sign up”.

You can even create an automation that sends a welcome email with your digital download to new subscribers.

And those are the three initial steps you’ll want to take before creating a digital product.

In the next video, we’ll go into more specific detail on growing your email list, including best practices for getting and keeping subscribers, and how to prep them for the launch of your first digital product.

If you found this video helpful and you want more content like this, subscribe and click the notification bell so you’ll be the first to know when we post a new video. Thanks for watching, and I’ll see you next time.

LINKS/RESOURCES: McKinsey & Company email marketing statistics report - Podia Digital Download Generator

About the author

Ben is a video content marketer for Podia, an all-in-one platform where online courses, digital downloads, and membership websites – alongside their creators – thrive.