How To Productize Your Service: Part 2—Backward Funnel

By Cristina Favreau | Productizing

Now that introductions are out of the way, it’s time to walk you through my simple 3-step approach to productize your service through digital content creation.

I mean, that’s what you came here for, right?

And fair warning, you’re getting an inside view of how my ADHD brain works.

Here we go!

Digital Product Funnel

First you need to understand how a digital product funnel works.

It’s a simple concept and I know I’m not teaching you anything new here. But I created a really cool graphic and wanted an excuse to show it off.

It kind of goes like this:

Digital Product Funnel

Now let’s break it down:
Digital Product Funnel: Content
Your funnel starts with quality content (blog posts, podcast, YouTube channel, live streaming broadcasts, guest articles, etc).

You publish this content free of charge, and there are no barriers to consuming this content. It’s public and available to everyone online.

Why do you produce all this content for free? It builds your KLT (Know-Like-Trust Factor), it establishes you as an expert, it showcases your knowledge.

More importantly, if your free content contains a strong call to action, it guides your audience to the next step of your funnel.

Digital Product Funnel: Opt-In
Your opt-in is still a piece of content which you offer completely free of charge. Except in this case, you ask for something in exchange—an email address.

The purpose of your opt-in is to keep building your KLT and expert status. But it does something more—it collects the email addresses of people who are interested in your thing. AND because people have voluntarily opted in, you have been given express permission to contact them in the future with more content and offers.

Digital Product Funnel: Low-Cost OfferAs subscribers get to know you and what you do better, some may be willing and ready to take the next step—parting with a bit of their hard-earned money and purchase your low-cost offer—something you’ve produced that will quickly help them achieve a goal or solve a problem.

The low-cost offer has a ‘warm and fuzzy’ factor, as it validates that people see value in what you offer, they need it and are willing to pay for it.

It also does something else—it changes the status of your audience from subscriber to client.

And the term “low-cost” really depends on your audience’s perception. You want the price point to be so low, that it almost seems ridiculous NOT to purchase.

Digital Product Funnel: Main Gig
Because your low-cost offer has helped your clients in one small ways, some will be compelled to tap into your full awesomeness and invest in your main gig.

The main gig is sometimes referred to as signature program, flagship product or core offer. They all mean the same thing.

It’s your high-ish priced product, program, service or event.

Of course, this is an over-simplified explanation of a digital product funnel but you get the idea.

And the flow illustrated here is the flow your audience ultimately goes through—not always in this exact order, but again, you get the idea.

Problem With the Funnel

The challenge I see is most online entrepreneurs are spending tons of time, energy and resources producing free content and offering amazingly awesome free opt-ins… then wonder why no one buys their main gig during a launch or promotion.

The conclusion I have come to is this: They are missing a piece of their funnel—the low-cost offer.

Another challenge comes to light when I ask them what they feel they can create as a low-cost offer. They are often unsure, or confused. Lines a blurred between free content and low priced content. They feel as thought they’ve produced as much quality content as they can without giving away the farm (aka their main gig).

Their confusion and frustration manifests itself in the form of questions, like: “How do I know what to charge for?” “How much can I charge for this low-cost thing?” “Won’t my audience feel cheated?” “Who will pay for content I’m already giving away for free?

That’s when I chime in and say: “Stop creating your digital content the way your audience sees it. Instead, use a backward funnel approach to figure it all out.

Product Funnel: The wrong way and the right way

So here’s my process!

My Three-Step Backward Funnel Approach

Step 1: Your main ‘thing’

When a client feels stuck in the digital content creation process, I get them to start at the end of the funnel—their main gig (or one of them, if they have multiple).

What’s your main gig? Is it a service? A program? An event? A digital product? A combination?

This process works for any form.

For most online business owners, figuring out their Main Gig is the easiest part of this whole process, because they already know what that is.

What’s more, they’re usually already serving clients via their main gig.

If you don’t already have your main gig figured out, you need to do that—stat!

Once your main gig is figured out, you’re ready to move on to the next step.

Step 2: Fragmentize

This is where you fragment—or split, section, chunk, splinter—your main gig into individual modules, chapters, lessons, steps, headings, etc. If you’re main gig is already fragmented, this step becomes easy for you.

If you’re unsure how to do this, think of the path your main gigs lead clients through. If you had to name milestones or check-in points, what would those be?

How many fragments did you come up with?

Choose just one, any one. If you’re unsure, choose the one your most excited about.

Could this one fragment be turned into its own, standalone product, program or service?

If yes, then you have the beginnings of your low-cost offer!

If not, choose another fragment that could be.

Get as creative as you like with this step. There’s no one “right” way to fragmentize your main gig.

However, don’t get stuck over-analyzing. If multiple fragments (or all) have low-cost offer potential,  do them ALL—eventually!

Choose just ONE to start with. When it’s done, work on the next.

Now that you have the low-cost offer part of your funnel figured out, you’re ready to move on to step three.

Step 3: Snip it into snippets

Now that you’ve decided on a low-cost offer, it’s time to snip it down into bite-size snippets. Your goal? Create an opt-in based on this snippet.

I can hear some of you say, “But Cristina, I already have an opt-in!”

That’s awesome! That’s great! That’s cool!

But it begs the question: Does your current opt-in relate to your main gig? Does it naturally lead subscribers to your low-cost offer?

If your answer is no, continue with this exercise.

If your answer is yes, continue with this exercise.

Why? Two reasons:

  1. Creating multiple opt-ins adds to your marketing collateral—and you can never have too much content!
  2. It gets you in the habit of thinking in themes—in this case, your main gig is your theme and you’re building a collection of products around this one theme

It’s not rocket science. You take the same fragmentized approach you used in step 2.

Only this time, grab little snippets from your low-cost offer to create an opt-in.

There are so many different ways you can snip it, so don’t get stuck in analysis paralysis. Think about how your audience prefers consuming content, and create an opt-in in that format.

Easy-peasy, right?

Put It Together

If you’ve followed me thus far, you should have a list that looks something like this (using my Get Clients Now! program as an example):

  1. MAIN GIG: Get Clients Now! — group program ($297)
  2. LOW-COST OFFER: How to Design a Compelling 30-Second Intro — digital guidebook ($37)
  3. OPT-IN: 12 Mistakes to Avoid in Your 30-Second Intro — email autoresponder series ($0)

What does yours look like?

Draw it on a whiteboard or print and display it some place visible, which helps keep you focused on income-generating activities.

Of course, planning it out like this is the easy part. Now you need to start creating the pieces of your funnel.

Take it one step at a time and you WILL get it done.

What matters is to start creating the pieces of your funnel (which is why I encouraged you to pick just one in each step).

I promise, nothing compares to the feeling of having a variety of products that tangibilize your service.

Creating and implementing your digital content empire allows you to provide value to multiple people at once. It allows you to experience the “multiple streams of income” thing you keep hearing about.

Offering little chunks of ‘you’ in digital form allows you to showcase the full breadth of your expertise!

There you have it! This is the exact process I’ve been using with clients for years, as well as for my own business.

My hope is that it serves you well and helps you get stuff done (in this case, your digital product funnel!).

I’m Dying to Know

What does your backward funnel look like?

Did this process make productizing your service more accessible?

Did this article help you demystify your personal productizing strategy?

How to Productize Your Service: Part 1-Introduction

By Cristina Favreau | Productizing

Coach. Lawyer. Consultant. Speaker. Copywriter. Therapist. Doula. Golf instructor. Personal chef. Seamstress.

What do all of these professions have in common? They are non-tangible services. The problem with being a service-based entrepreneur is that if you’re not “there” to perform said service, it doesn’t get done. If the job doesn’t get done, you don’t get paid, you lose clients, your business fails and you move into your parents’ basement.

The solution to avoid moving back in with Mom and Dad is coming up with a way of getting you in different places at once.

Sure you could hire staff. But the “pay per service” issue remains.

The way to create more reliable, duplicatable income is to “tangibilize” your service into packaged products—digital or physical.

This is called “productizing” your service.

How can you turn your service into a product? Let me help!

You Already Know This

If you’ve spent any amount of time researching ways to turn your service into a product, you’ve no doubt found TONS of information on the WHAT. WHAT to create?

You’ve been told to create:

  • ebooks
  • video tutorials
  • membership sites
  • self-study courses
  • audio programs
  • templates
  • resource guides
  • etc., etc., etc.

But you already know this. In fact, I’m willing to bet you have at least a handful of these half-finished projects collecting virtual dust on your hard drive right now. (Come on, admit it!)

The problem is not in CREATING the products. We’re entrepreneurs. We’re masters at creating.

So, what’s the problem?

The Real Challenge—Sell or Not Sell?

The problem, well one of the problems, I’m finding is that most of us don’t know where to draw the line between what to give away (offer as a free opt-in or lead magnet) and what to charge for.

I’ve come up with, what I think, is a very simple process to figuring out what to create, how to fit it nice and neatly in a product funnel, thus knowing EXACTLY what you should be getting paid for and what you could offer for free.

Turn It Upside Down

How do you figure out how to take all this “stuff” you want to create (or have half-created) into a product funnel, getting paid what you deserve, but still offering free giveaways to grow your list and as well as build the KLT (Know-Like-Trust) factor?

Easy. Turn your funnel on its head. It’s what I call a “backward funnel” approach.

You start from the bottom of your productized services and you work your way up.

Confused yet? Bear with me, I promise it’s worth it.

Now you’re ready for Part 2, where I walk you through my entire “backward funnel” approach.

I’m curious—Do you “productize”?

Hacking Motivation With Curation

By Cristina Favreau | Motivation

Writer’s block. Unmotivated. Uninspired. Procrastinating.

It happens to the best of us.

As an entrepreneur, it’s your responsibility to stay motivated, to keep going, to “get over” any sort of creative block. Your clients, colleagues and family expect it of you.

What can you do to get out of a slump? Prepare for the unexpected.

The Challenge

Here’s the challenge. As an entrepreneur, working alone in your home office, in your car, at a local café or anywhere else means you’re often alone.

Building and creating alone in your bubble, your island, or a vacuum. This vortex that is called entrepreneurship.

You have this “fire in your belly,” and this fire has the power to take us a long way—to get us through some rough patches.

Your ambition and drive as an entrepreneur means you’re doing a whole lot of things many others are just not willing to.

We take risks. We do things like get on Periscope and Blab. We spend hours on social media platforms, connecting with people—folks we’ve never met in person. Things like this makes you, me and fellow entrepreneurs crazy awesome!

But sometimes we lose our awesome. Sometimes we lose our mojo. Sometimes we lack the drive or motivation.

What makes this situation even more challenging is once you’re in that state of “stuckness” you start losing momentum. And that is a rabbit hole you want to avoid at all costs.

The solution? Hack your motivation by becoming a Motivational Curator.

How To Curate Motivation

You know yourself better than anyone else. You know what gets you going.

For example, if I’m stuck doing a tedious repetitive task, like data entry (anything to do with manipulating data), I turn on rockin’ music. It motivates me to get it done, it keeps me moving and it helps me forget the pain that is having to do mindless copy and pasting.

What gets you going when you’re feeling stuck? What things, that after doing them, really stoke that fire inside you?

Come up with a list of your top 5 inspirational sources.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • music
  • inspiring quotes
  • podcasts or audio books
  • client testimonials
  • tough love
  • biographies
  • exercise or dancing
  • conferences
  • your coach or mentor
  • YouTube videos
  • practicing a craft or hobby
  • mastermind, advisory board or networking group
  • affirmations
  • volunteering
  • napping
  • drawing, painting or doodling
  • movies
  • confiding in someone you trust
  • reading fiction
  • composing a song, poem or music
  • powerful images

(the top 5 on the list above are mine)

Now that you have your list, come up with a way of curating all these sources. The ideal is to collect as many, if not all, sources into one place.

My Motivation Hack System

I used to save screenshot inspirational images on my hard drive. Or copy motivational quotes in a Notepad doc.

I’ve recently come up with a better system, using Evernote. (click the thumbnail for a larger view)

I have a notebook stack, called CRISTINA’S BIZ STACK, that is just for my business stuff.

In that stack, I have a notebook called MOTIVATION CURATION.

That notebook contains notes, separated by categories.

Current categories are:

  • Quotes that motivate me
  • Music that motivates me
  • People that motivate me
  • Movies that motivate me
  • Hacking Motivation (doodle)
  • Other online sources that motivate me
  • Images that motivate me

The categories will undoubtedly evolve as I build a larger collection, but for now, it works.

The next time I see an inspiring image, read a quote that incites me to take action, watch a YouTube video that I’d like to save for future viewing or find something else that moves me to take action, I’ll just click on the Evernote Web Clipper extension in Chrome and save it to my Evernote notebook.

If I read a book (a physical book) with a passage I feel needs to be part of my collection of motivational material, I could either scan the page or take a picture of it, and insert that image in Evernote. (Ain’t that just the coolest?!)

Whenever I need a boost or if I’m feeling stuck, I just need to open Evernote and look through my collection.

Another reason I like this system, is that I can share my entire notebook by email. That means I don’t have to keep my collection to myself, I can share it to someone start or build their own.

Your Turn

Now it’s your turn to create a personalized and highly customized curated collection of your most powerful sources of motivation.

Remember, you’re responsible for your own motivation. No one can take action for you, no one can create a success plan for you.

It’s your responsibility to find what works for you, to find the what grabs you from the inside, sparks the flame and breathes new life into your entrepreneurial soul.

I encourage you to hack your motivation. Come up with a curation system that works for you. You’ll know it’s the right system when it’s the system you use consistently.

Some systems to consider:

  • Google Docs
  • word processor
  • a folder on your hard drive or DropBox
  • a Pinterest board (public or secret)
  • scrapbooking
  • doodling
  • Moleskin or other paper journal
  • voice recordings

As I come up with better ideas, I’ll add them to this list.

Don’t wait until you’re in a situation where you’re scrambling to tap back into your creativity. Don’t wait until the loss of momentum has fully set it, making it hard to get going again. Having quick access to sources of motivation that move you deeply will help you pick back up quickly.

Start preparing your collection today. You can thank me later!

Get Stuff Done: Putting a Project Management System in Place

By Cristina Favreau | Get Stuff Done , Productivity

Project Management Systems

The key to successfully running an online business is to consistently get stuff done—especially the income-generating stuff.

However, getting stuff done is a challenge when you have to keep track of so many moving pieces, like:

  • creating
  • delivering
  • engaging
  • learning
  • marketing
  • networking
  • planning
  • prospecting
  • publishing
  • reading
  • replying
  • researching
  • selling
  • serving
  • updating and upgrading
  • writing
  • … and more!

Remember the days when staying on top of everything seemed so simple—even enjoyable?

Yeah, that was then. This is now.

You’re in a different league now. You’re playing a bigger game.

You have tons of ideas—GREAT ideas!

You have something to share with the world, and people are paying attention.

They want MORE. You want to deliver.


The Other “Stuff”

I know. There’s all this stuff that needs to get done.

And this stuff gets in the way of the all the other things you want to create.

The solution? Systems, processes, workflows, standards of operations, to-do lists, procedures… WHATEVER you want to call it.

You need to put those in place.

Why? They keep you organized. And productive.

They reduce stress, overwhelm and procrastination.

The way to getting systems, processes, workflows, standards of operations, to-do lists, procedures… WHATEVER you want to call it in order is documenting and tracking all that stuff in a project management program.

Sure, notebooks, Post-It Notes and whiteboards have served you well in the past.

But, like I said before, you’re playing a bigger game. You need to step up your game.

That means getting organized and documenting every repetitive task you do.

I see you rolling your eyes and can hear you say BORING!

But seriously, it’s the only way to grow and be profitable.

And I know you know I’m right.

Where to Start

Having systems, processes, workflows, standards of operations, to-do lists, procedures… WHATEVER you want to call it in place is useless if you don’t have a tool (or tools) to help keep you on track.

There are many, MANY online project management tools to choose from, with fees ranging from free to hundreds of dollars per month (or more).

So, start by choosing a project management tool. One that fits your needs, situation and budget.

If you don’t already use a project management tool, here are some for you to consider:

This is only a small sample of the HUNDREDS of project management tools available, so do your research, ask colleagues for recommendations, try a few out.

What is the best tool? The answer is simple: The one that you’ll use!

I currently use Asana for to-do lists, and Evernote to save correspondence templates, swipe files, research, client documents and podcast interview profiles.

Now What?

Now that you’ve chosen a project management program, you will, for the next week, document all the stuff you do each day.


Open a new project or start a new folder for each new task and give it a title (i.e. New Client Intake Process).

Type out each step you take to complete each task.

Keep it simple.

For example, when working with a new client, your workflow may look something like this:

  1. Send intake questionnaire.
  2. Schedule discovery call.
  3. Send PayPal invoice.
  4. Schedule coaching call.
  5. Send follow-up email.
  6. Add contact information to newsletter list.

Of course, that’s a very basic process, and you’ll need to add more steps. But by keeping it simple, you get it done.

Getting stuff done, at it’s most basic level, is better than waiting until you can get it perfect.

You’ll obviously add more detailed steps and refine your process are you go through it again and again.

Do that for each and every repetitive tasks you do in your business.

For one, it makes it easier the next time you accomplish that task.

And second, it makes it super easy to identify which tasks you can delegate, AND it reduces training time by providing your assistant a standard of operation.

Here are some processes to document:

  • Publishing weekly blog post
  • Posting on Facebook daily
  • Scheduling podcast guests
  • Selling info products
  • Webinar post-production
  • Posting to YouTube channel
  • Securing speaking engagements
  • Monthly affiliate promotions
  • International air travel arrangements
  • Creating content upgrades

I guarantee that the time and effort you put into documenting your processes NOW will be well worth it in the future.

You can thank me later!

Taking Things One Step Further

Once you have most of your processes in place, your next step—and this is really the mecca of project management—is to automate as many tasks as possible.

I’ll tackle automating tasks in my next post.

How To BE The Solution

By Cristina Favreau | Credibility , Filling the Pipeline , Self-promotion

You’re out there everyday, telling the world how great your service is, that what you have to offer is exactly the solution they are looking for.

The best way to prove that your services are the answer to your prospect’s problems is to build your credibility as a professional and to show that you’re the expert in your field.

Here’s how to prove that you are the solution:

  • Prove that you deliver what you promise. Live by this mantra: Under-Promise, Over-Deliver.
  • Look at your marketing material with a critical eye. Would you hire yourself?
  • Add an element of tangibility to your services by sharing real success stories and testimonials.
  • Write and publish articles about your area of expertise.
  • Fill your pipeline by getting others to introduce you and refer your services.

Unbranding Technique

By Cristina Favreau | Branding

Mike Brown over at Brainzooming wrote a short article earlier this year on an alternative to defining your business brand called Have You Tried a ‘Not’ Definition?

Start by asking, “What doesn’t our brand stand for or represent?” By beginning with a “not” definition, you may subsequently be able to more readily express a succinct, targeted definition.

Because I still have branding on the brain and I struggle with nailing down the details, I thought this was a great way to flip branding over on its head.

Hope it helps you get clearer about what you don’t do too!!

The Savvy Snippet: Get Over Yourself

By Cristina Favreau | The Savvy Snippet

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.Marianne Williamson

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