Today I’m excited to share the Minimal Viable Product (MVP) method. It’ll help you quickly come up with a digital product for your business. I’ve personally used this method time and time again for my own businesses over the last 15 years and am excited to share it with you.
Your products don’t have to be complicated, and this method will help you get out of your own way and help you get a product done without having it to be perfect.
On a side note before we get started, mark your calendars because, on September 12th, we’re hosting our Brand Creators online one-day event. My team and I will be sharing all the concepts, principles, and action steps to build out your brand.
One of the sessions will teach you how to come up with a digital product, build it, and successfully launch it. But for now, let’s get right to how you can implement the MVP method to help you grow your own business.
My Experience with Creating Digital Courses
My business and life were changed when I created my first course for my photography business nearly 15 years ago. I spent time building that first course before I sold it. Luckily, I did pretty well with it, and it was a game-changer.
I spent over two months building the course and refining it before I felt comfortable releasing it. I did the same thing with a similar course a few months later and spent another few months creating it.
When it launched, I only made $3,000. It didn’t do nearly as well as I had planned. I had built a massive course that contained a large amount of information and realized that I would never do that again. Instead, I decided to move forward.
I will only sell something before I created it. I always do a beta or MVP model to start. This makes sure that there is a need in the market before creating a product.
How to Create a Minimal Viable Product
Your product doesn’t need to be perfect before you launch it in the market place. A minimal viable product needs to get out in the marketplace. Once you get a response from people in your niche and get the data, you can either improve based on feedback or do more of what’s working well.
For me, I look at everything I did last year (because it was a busy year.) I’ve realized that it’s time for me to slow down and do more of the things that help people while making things easier for me. Minimal viable products allow me to do that. I can create smaller workshops and digital products that create less work for me, which is the goal. I’m keeping my content lean but very valuable moving forward.
Analyze Your Own Business
The key is to look at our own business and see where you can add things to help lead people to your own brand with minimal effort. Some great ways to do this include blog content and building your email list with a lead magnet.
Ask yourself, are you currently doing things that you feel like need to be perfect before putting them out there for people to see? The goal is to help people solve a problem and provide an easy solution.
Are you going after your goals or the “standard goals” you think everyone else has? Take the time to define what success means to you. Are you making things complicated because you feel like that’s what everyone else is doing to get things done? You don’t have to! A minimal viable product is the way to go so you can focus on what matters most.
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“Remember, I'm here for you, I believe in you, and I'm rooting for you! Now it's time for you to take action and go rock your brand”!
Take-Aways From Todays Episode
- My Experience with Creating Digital Courses (7:15)
- How to Create a Minimal Viable Product (14:21)
- Analyze Your Own Business (20:49)
- “look at our own business and see where you can add things to help lead people to your own brand with minimal effort”.
- “Are you going after your goals or the “standard goals?” you think everyone else has? Instead, take the time to define what success means to you”.
Links From This Episode:
- Brand Creators Event: https://www.baltickets.com/
- Playbook: http://brandcreatorsbook.com
- Checklist: https://brandcreators.com/checklist
- Take Action Crew: http://takeactioncrew.com
- Coffee Talk: https://brandcreators.com/coffee
- Convert Kit: https://brandcreators.com/convertkit
00:01 Do you feel like you are going after your goals? Or are you going after? What is, I guess the standard goals? Like what is success way? Hey, Hey, what's up everyone. Welcome to the rock, your brand podcast. I'm your host, Scott. Bowker a serial entrepreneur on a mission to help you. This show is designed to teach you to inspire you, to motivate you, to take massive action and build a future proof business. So whether you're just starting out or taking your existing business to the next level, this is your home. Now, if you're ready, I'm ready. Let's rock your brand. What's up guys. Welcome back to the rock, your brand podcast. This is episode eight 75, and I'm excited to share with you this thing called the M V P method. And that is really coming up with something super easy that you could execute, that you could create a digital asset for your business.
01:06 Now, this does have to do with potentially launching a digital product, but it doesn't have to be a massive digital product. It could be just a guide or an ebook, or maybe it's going to be a workshop, or maybe it's going to be some type of small training that you could offer to your market. But what I wanted to do here is share a coffee talk session, where I went through this entire method. I also shared a bunch of different examples of how I've been able to use this time and time again. And actually I'm going to be using it here once again. And you're going to see it unfold right before your eyes. Yeah, that's right. I'm going to be doing exactly what I teach. Why not? It works right. But a lot of times people don't realize it doesn't have to be complicated.
01:58 And I want to share this episode with you because I want you to start thinking along the lines of how do I get out of my own way? How do I get out of the perfectionism trap or the procrastination, you know, you know, as well as I do, sometimes we want to make things perfect before we push go or post or live, right? So I want you guys to understand it. Doesn't have to be perfect. And that's what we call a MVP product or minimal viable product. All right. And it could also be a minimal viable post if you're creating a blog post. I have a lot of people that say, Scott, I've got this blog post just about ready to publish, but I need to make it a little better. I need to tweak it. I need to make sure all my SEO stuff is in line.
02:41 I need to make sure it's perfect. And I'm like, you know what? Something out there is better than nothing out there. Get the thing live. You can always refine it later. And that goes also very well with creating a product that you can actually offer and sell. Now, let me just say this before we get into this episode, uh, I did want to share with you that if you're listening to this before September 12th, we are doing a brand accelerator live virtual. Okay. And that is our virtual event. Now it was a live event. That's what we did in 2018, 19 before COVID. And we were going to do it again in 2020, but because of COVID, we had to cancel that event. We are postponing it until the following year, but we are doing a one day live event and this will be really all of the concepts, all of the principles, but also the action steps to build out your brand.
03:38 And one of those sessions during the day is going to be exactly this right here, how to take an idea or even come up with the idea of a digital product or a digital asset, how to build it and then how to sell it. I've never taught this before, but I'm going to be teaching it at brand accelerator, live virtual. There's going to be a whole dedicated to that. I've also got a special guest that's coming on that has done this very, very successfully and how she has taken a $10 product and turn that into thousands. Um, we're going to be sharing that at brand accelerator, live virtual as well. So if you're interested in joining us, all you need to do is head on over to a L tickets.com. Again, that's B a L tickets.com. Are you able to grab a spot over there?
04:26 We'd love to have you. You can also head over to the show notes of this episode, brand creators.com forward slash eight 75. And that'll take you over to the show notes page. I really think that you should attend this. If you are looking to build out your brand with what's working now, and we're going to be talking once again about traffic, the landscape, what has changed, what's working now, then from there, we're going to also talk about content creation. Again, what's working now. And then we're going to talk about email list building. We're going to talk about email marketing. We're going to talk about building digital products from scratch and selling them. And then we're going to talk about Facebook ads and really what's working now there. Well, all of that is going to be a full day. It's like a full day workshop on building out your brand.
05:14 So again, Bal tickets.com head on over there. If you're watching this or listening to this later, um, this will be also available there most likely with the recordings, but make sure that you attend their live because we've got a lot of cool things lined up that we're going to share. All right, guys. So with that, all being said, let's stop talking here. So you guys can listen to the M V P method, how you can apply it to your business. All right. So enjoy. All right. So let me share a little story back in the day. And I'm talking 15 years ago, I did exactly what I am teaching today exactly to a T built an email list. Okay. And at the time I built it to about a thousand okay. Thousand email subscribers over about six months, took me about six months to build that.
06:02 I built it mostly actually pretty much a hundred percent organically, no paid, right. So a hundred percent organic. And I nurtured that list. Just like I talk about here. I, I sent out, you know, helpful videos and at the time that was in the, um, in the photography world. So I was helping people with Photoshop. I was helping people, um, you know, get started in a sense of like, what does it look like to add Photoshop to your business? If you're a photographer and, and how to do simple edits, how to be creative, um, with your clients pictures. So you can charge more things like that. So I was developing in the background a course. I was like, you know what, I'm going to build a course and I'm going to sell this thing and I'm going to see how it see how it goes.
06:49 Right. So I did that and I'm a long story short, I'm going to go through the entire thing. I'll do that on maybe another coffee talk, if you guys want me to, I'll give you guys the play by play on that. That's actually what changed my, my business in my life, really? It opened my eyes to the internet marketing space and the, in the internet world, the online business world. But basically I, I spent time building that course before I sold it. Okay. Now, luckily I did pretty good with that. Okay. I did pretty good. It actually did over like $12,000 in sales in like three days. And back then that was life changing for me, even today. That's a good little launch. Right. But that was a game changer for me. I'm coming from the brick and mortar space, but I spent probably, I don't know, two months making the course and I wanted to launch it sooner, but I kept putting it off and kept putting off and kept putting it off.
07:45 I was re tweaking and refining and doing all these things. And I finally got it to market and I sold it and it did pretty good. Okay. But then I did it again and I did it in a, in another product that was in the same, in the same niche. And it was basically a marketing training for photographers. And I thought that's what they wanted. That's what they needed. And they did, but it was kind of big, right? It was, it was a lot to absorb. And so I built that product and, uh, did the same thing, probably spent a couple months building it and recorded all the modules recorded. All the videos uploaded it to at the time was like, or it was, it might've been Vimeo. I forget. Um, hosted the videos, uploaded, everything, got everything in place. Did that downloads got everything going.
08:35 And back then it was a lot harder to do it. I use like wishlist member, which was a WordPress plugin. I had to figure all that stuff out, bill, all this stuff, right. Spent months on doing this. And this is where I realized I need to do things different, but what happened was this, I launched it just as I did before on the other stuff. And it didn't do as well. So I say it didn't do as well. It probably sold, I don't know, $3,000 worth on a hundred dollar product. Right. I think it was a hundred or maybe $125 product. And it's sold like three, maybe $4,000. I forget off the top of my head. So to some people it's like, wow, that's pretty good, Scott. Well, if you do the math, it wasn't really that good because I spent hours in there and I put it off and I put it off and I put it off and I kept perfecting it.
09:23 I kept making it better. I kept doing all this stuff and I did all that work. When in reality, it's not really what the market wanted or it's what they wanted. They just didn't want all of that. Right. Because I built this massive thing, right. Maybe like a six week module modulating course. So from there on out, I was like, wait a minute. I'm not doing that again. I am not doing that again. What I'm going to do is I am going to sell something before I actually create it. And that's what I've done every single time since that launch. And we're talking, you know, over the past 10 years, right. I have never done it without doing a beta or an MVP model. Okay. So some of you that have been listeners of the podcast or follow me for years now, you've probably experienced that let's take brand creators Academy.
10:16 For example, that's like the newest one, right? Actually, no, it's not the Pinterest traffic. One was the most recent one. I did brand creators Academy. We didn't have one piece of content built or created. When I launched brand creators Academy. Now I had an audience built up. I had an email list. I had some following. Right. But then what I did is I said, you know what, I'm going to throw it out there. And if, if I can get, you know, some people that raise their hand before I build this thing right before we start building this thing, and you can be part of the founding, you know, founding members and all of this stuff, right. To help us shape this thing. Right. You can get in before anyone else and help us with this thing. And then once we opened the doors we welcomed in, I believe the first time we opened, it was like a hundred members.
11:03 And in my mind, I'm like, I want to get at least 50 members to help us shape this thing. Well, we did more than that, but in my head, I'm like, if we don't get that, that many, that means that it's probably something that people don't want and I'm not willing to spend the energy to do this. Right. So obviously it validates it before you build the product. Now on a smaller scale done this, I've done this on smaller scales too. So on a smaller scale, uh, recently we did a Pinterest traffic workshop. Okay. And I said to my daughter, I said, okay, you're, you've been doing this behind the scenes. Well, that's, I know people will probably want it. Right. We're also going to offer this inside the Academy. So we're going to give it to those guys. But I want to, I want to go ahead and give it to anyone that's not even in the Academy and just see if people would even be interested in this.
11:51 So we opened the doors and said, we're going to do this workshop. Here's everything that's going to be included in this workshop. It's only going to be for two weeks. Right. There's going to be two weeks worth of training. This is what we're going to teach. We're going to do two live calls. If you want in here's the, here's the order button, right. Nothing fancy. Right. The stuff wasn't even created yet. Right. So now, if I only got five people to say, yeah, we want to do it. I might've said, you know what? We're not going to do it. There's not enough interest. We're going to refund you your money. I'm sorry. Um, we're just not going to do the workshop now. That's what I would have did. Right. But because we got, I think we had just over 50 people go through that app for that, for that little, you know, works, which isn't even available right now.
12:35 Which, which will be soon again, we're going to offer that evergreen. So it will be available without even being in the Academy because we want other places for people to come in. Right. But that, to my point, that's another example. I did another one in the photography world after I did the one that didn't work as well. I did a beta and I said, listen, I'm going to teach this. I call it digital background secrets and where I was going to help people with digital backgrounds and incorporate them in their business. And I'm like, if I get 50 people to raise their hand and pay $75 to go through this, it's going to be over two weeks. And, um, I'll do it sold all those spots in minutes. I'm like, okay, that's what they want. And that now I'm going to build it. Right. So I like the idea of beta and MVP.
13:22 Now, the way that you can do an MVP in the, in the, uh, you know, any market, any niche is you can basically just take some blog content and then put it into a PDF and see if people will buy it for $9 and 99 cents in a, in an ebook. Right. That's exactly what you can do. Or you can here. Here's another way, even if you don't want to sell it yet, let's say that you take a blog post, which we did, by the way, inside the Academy, we take that blog post. It's already written, by the way we take it, we put it, uh, you know, we, we put it into this, uh, this tool called designer. We, we punch it through, we create a cover. Literally it's like so raw, right? Like there's not really a lot of time that went into this thing.
14:01 Other than the time it took to write the blog post, which we had at anyway, that's going to be our lead magnet. We put it up there, we drove some traffic to it. Boom. We're getting a 45% conversion rate on that guest. The market wants that maybe we should build something on the back end to try to sell them now that they, now that they went through this. Right. So I'm trying to say here, you don't have to have it perfect. In order to get it into the marketplace. The same thing goes, if you're creating blog posts right now and you're waiting until you have it. Perfect. It's not formatted. Right. You got to hit publish. Okay. Minimal buyable, post minimal viable product. Okay. It needs to get out there if you've been sitting on a blog post because you've been waiting or if you've been sitting on your lead magnet, because it's not perfect.
14:47 Get the darn thing done and get it out there. The only way that you're going to be able to see is to get it done and get it out there. And then if you see the response, the data's coming in, that this is something that I should probably do more of and do more of it. Okay. This works really well when it's a paid product. So I'm going to give you a kind of like an upcoming thing that I'm going to be doing here. And this all comes from really me looking at last year. I look at last year, everything that I did last year, right. Everything that I did was probably one of my busiest years. Okay. I'm talking, writing a book wrote this, wrote this thing, right? The take action effect put on a live event of over 200 people in a live venue.
15:31 Okay. Tons of work. Tons of planning. Right. I ran a high level, uh, inner circle mastermind, right. Uh, with, uh, with 10 entrepreneurs that were, you know, really high level. Right. I devoted time to that. Right. Um, I, um, I rolled out, uh, what was the econ business formula? We did that as a, as a course, as a training. Right. We did that. I also was part of two masterminds. Right. So all of this stuff, and there was more podcasts I'm doing Monday, Wednesday, Friday, uh, you know, I'm doing now, I'm doing coffee talks. Right. But what happened was, is after I got all done with last year and I sat down and the dust is settled and I'm like, Scott, you were busy, man. And you were a little stressed out at times. You, you need to slow down and you know what? You need to do more of creating stuff that helps people.
16:30 But also that doesn't necessarily have to be heavy. Okay. And what I mean by that is, is we can do things that are heavy and we can do things that are light. And what I mean by that is if I have to build a fallout training okay. For people. And it's, I know it's, I know what it takes to build one, right. If I need to do that, I know it's going to be a huge undertaking. And I know that if people are going to spend a thousand dollars for this training, or even $500 from his training, they're going to expect a lot from that. They're going to expect the promises a lot bigger. Right? What if, what if I just created these little, these little workshops or what if I created these, these little mini things that don't feel like, you know, they don't feel like a lot of work, but I can get them out there and I can test things quicker.
17:18 So the Pinterest traffic workshop was part of that. It was me saying, what would it take to do that? Number one, I'd have my daughter outline this stuff and then record the video. So she's doing that part. And then I just got to show up on a couple of live calls and help out with that. Right. So it didn't feel heavy at all right. We're talking about, well, we have an upcoming brand accelerator live, which you guys will hear more about here soon, but we're going to take that day. That was going to be alive day. And what we were going to do is we were going to, um, you know, we were going to do that live and now with COVID we can't. So we're going to turn that into a live virtual event, but it's going to be one day and I'm making it not where it's a typical event where you have a whole bunch of speakers come in and they come up and they, you know, they, I mean, those are valuable when you're in person.
18:05 They're really, really good, but I just want to get to kind of workshop, like I want to workshop together. Right. So we're going to basically just lay, we already did. We laid out that day, I'm going to be teaching a lot of it. Chris is going to be teaching a lot of it. And I've got a couple of guest speakers coming in. Right. And that's it, that there is going to be available for people to come in and watch it live at a certain price. And then there's going to be another price where they can watch live, or they can have the recordings. And that's it. It's light. It's done. Right. I'm going to plan out my content. I'm going to show up, I'm going to do it. I'm not, it's not going to be like super, super, like next level where you're going to have all of these, you know, all of these fancy like feeds and all this stuff that just requires more work, more stress.
18:47 Right. So I'm, I'm keeping it lean, but very, very valuable. Right. And then moving forward, you know, we have, my whole focus is on, um, you know, is on the Academy, let's be straight. Right. My whole thing is to, is to get people results before they ever want to join the Academy. Then when they join the Academy, they're just blown away and they want to stay. Right. But I also know that there's some people that just don't want all that right now. So how do I serve those people and how do I do it in a way that's light. For me, that's not heavy, right? Minimal, minimal viable products. That's how, and I'll tell you how that's going to work. It's very, very simple. Let's say, for example, I have the email marketing accelerator training that we just, we just finished up just about finished up now.
19:33 Right. And it took a lot of work over 40 plus videos in there. Right. Lotta, lotta work, but it's really valuable. Our Academy members get all that. Right. But I know that I could sell that outside of the Academy for probably 500 bucks, maybe even more. But I know that a lot of people don't want, not even all of that. And I don't want all of the, all of the required work necessarily within that right now. I want to focus all my energy on the Academy. What, what can I do though, that could serve you better. Maybe I could do with maybe a, maybe a one day workshop that we could do online and maybe I don't need to charge all that much for it. And then you get to basically get what you need. You get to have a, you know, a snack, if you will, on that topic, we can get through that one obstacle.
20:19 And then who knows maybe later on down the line, you'll want to come into the Academy, right? This way here, all I need to do is I need to teach a workshop. Like I was going to be hired by a college for two hours, make sure that you walk away with what we promise that you're going to do. Like maybe it's a workshop on just building your list. And we do that for two hours and then we have an hour of Q and a, right. So that's what I'm saying. When we're talking about minimal viable product, you have to look at your business, okay. And see where you can add things that could either potentially lead people to your brand. That, that doesn't require a lot of work, which blog content is great. Building. Your email list is great with a lead magnet, but then also, how do you now turn that into dollars?
21:04 And that's also something we're gonna be teaching inside the Academy. I may do a one day, two hour workshop on how to create your first digital product. I might do that, obviously in the Academy, we're going to go deeper. And also the Academy members get all these workshops for free. Um, but that's kind of where I'm at. And so the reason why I'm sharing this with you guys, cause I want you guys to think about your business. Does it feel heavy, right? Are there things that you're doing that you think have to be perfect? And if you do, I need you to start asking yourself why, why do I think it has to be perfect? Who's going to judge me right. Or, you know, like, Oh, so I might put something up and it might not get as much traffic if I optimized it just a little bit better.
21:47 Right. So again, the reason why I'm sharing this with you is because I want you to understand the struggle is real. All right. That's first and foremost. And I just shared with you, I mean, I'm being transparent with you guys. Like last year was a really hard year for me. It was a great year, a very, very hard. And now I'm looking at it, like, do I want to keep going down that road and constantly feeling I gotta be on social, constantly feeling like I gotta be, you know, out there in the, in the face of things when I want to. Right. I don't want to know that I have to post three times a day on Instagram in order to keep the algorithm going. I don't want that. I don't want the weight of that. Right. I don't want the weight of a, well, I need to email every single, you know, three days or it's going to look bad.
22:31 I mean, I want to do it when I want to do it, which I usually do three times a week. Um, but I don't want to think, Oh, that email isn't perfect. So I'm not going to send it this morning. I sent an email, one of my shortest emails and just said, Hey, you know, if you're struggling with perfectionism or procrastination, any of that stuff, it's true. It's real. Um, but there's a way around that. It's called the MVP and that's kind of what we're talking about here today, but that's my thought of the day. Right? Because a lot of times we overcomplicate things. We also think it has to be perfect. Okay. I'm a big believer on let's get something out there and then let's, let's shape it. Let's let's rework it let's test it right. As Chris Shaffer always says, let's test it.
23:13 All right. So guys, do you have any questions on this? Again? I kind of threw a bunch out there at you, but I really just wanted to share my own experience. Right. And kind of where I'm going. Right. Like right now I know that there's a lot of people that want to know how to build their email lists, but they might not want to invest $500 on a course and they might not want to go through a three week course. They might just be like, Scott, just give me the cliff notes version, man. And just let's get on a workshop and I'll pay you. Oh, you know, I'll pay you 50 bucks. Right. And then I can do that. And the cool thing is, is when I do this live with one, I can then turn that into an evergreen product that people can buy later.
23:52 And that'll be just something that people could, they could buy and come into the world of brand creators. That's what it's all about. It's about helping people. It's about building our community to be stronger, not bigger, stronger, right? Yes. Numbers are great. But as you, I mean, you guys probably know this by now. I'm not motivated by money. Right. If I was motivated, if I was motivated by, you know, big, fancy boats, you know, fancy cars and all that stuff, I would have to work harder, but I don't want to work hard. I want to work on the things I want to work on. And I think that's the thing. We always not always, but a lot of times we compare ourselves because we're in a certain market or a certain niche and we see these people are doing it, so we need to do it.
24:32 And I don't want to fall into that trap. And I don't think you do either. So let me, let me ask you guys a quick question. Do you feel like you are going after your goals? Where are you going after? What is the, I guess the standard goals? Like what is success, right? Do you feel like you're, you feel like things are complicated because you're making them complicated, right? Or because you think that you have to build this complex funnel in order to, because you're hearing that funnels are the thing. All right, guys. So I hope that you are now fired up because you don't have to make things complicated. And if you are falling in the trap of perfectionism or procrastination, which a lot of us are that episode will definitely, definitely help you. So make sure that you go back, listen to it again and start thinking through your business.
25:30 What is something that you could turn into a minimal viable product, whether you're going to sell it or you're going to use it as a free lead magnet or that you're just going to start posting content on your website. What is something you've been holding off on that you've just been waiting because it's not perfect. What is that one thing I want you to take that and I want you to get it. So it's a minimal viable product. Good enough. And hit post or hit publish, make it live. All right. Now, again, like I said, in the beginning, if you want to attend a full day workshop day, where we're going to be talking about this topic as well, about how to create your own digital product, then also how to sell it. There's gonna be a full session at brand accelerator, live virtual. We're going to do that exact process right in front of you.
26:17 We're going to share with you the steps to take exactly what we talked about here, but in detail and a whole bunch of other cool things. So again, if you want to attend brand accelerator, live 20, 20 virtual, it's our virtual workshop. You can just head on over to be a L tickets.com B a L tickets.com. And you'll get all the information over there. We'd love to have you all right, guys. So that's it. That's going to wrap up this episode. You can find the notes by heading over to brand creators.com forward slash eight 75 and all the show notes and goodies will be over there. All right, guys. So that's it. That's going to wrap it up as always remember, I'm here for you. I believe in you and I am rooting for you, but you have to, you have to come up, say it with me, say it loud, say it. Proud. Take action. Have an awesome, amazing day. And I'll see you right back here. Next episode. Now let's rock your brand.
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