Something Made of Wood — The Physical Information Product

The Informaton Age, the Digital Age,…we continually get the news that everything is going the microchip route these days. For the most part, it is. Technology is always changing and it is important for the information marketer to adapt to this in order to continually succeed. But do not discard the more traditional methods of information marketing. As this article will explain, people are always going to want an information product they can hold in their hand.

Something made of wood.

I saw media mogul Sir Richard Branson on a late night Canadian talk show the other night and he stated , with the rise of digital formats and file sharing,
it is quite possible that society could see the end of CDs, records, and all other physical forms of recorded music.

Is this good or bad? Well, if you asked a teenage kid with little pocket money, he’d give you one positive answer. If you asked a high-ranking official of Sony Music, he’d give you one direct negative reply. But what is important is this: it doesn’t matter for the information marketer.

That’s right. While it is important to utilize all modern tools of the information age, it is even more important not to forget the other profitable avenues of your business. People still like the physical products, and you can provide these products to them. Often, a print version of an information product can result in
30% to 40% in profit increase.

As an information marketer here are some physical information products you can offer to your clients:

— A book: Once you accumulate a large amount of information, you should think about compiling it into book form. Break it down into chapters, provide lots of detail, and even show some examples. For example, at IMI, we have offered business start-up books with everything from “getting started” information to who to go to for help, and have even provided a back page appendix of legal documents to assist entrepreneurs.

— A special report: You can also consolidate a skills or how-to package into a special report. Reports should be only a few pages and the content should be very direct. My colleague is a writing ace with years of experience. If we get stuck with product ideas, we shoot him an e-mail. He has a backlog of small reports on product and ad copy writing skills that have proven very successful.

— A transcript: If you hold a seminar or conference, it’s understandable that not a lot of your clients will be able to attend. Why not offer a transcript? Include all the important dialogues of your session in paragraph form, with chapter breakdowns and overhead examples.

— Mailings: If you want to advertise special offers or newsletters, try sending out a special mailing to your clients. This can be very effective, with some great responses, even with the prevalence of e-mail. While my superior Michael
Lombardi has taken up the online route to promote his publications, he has not given up on his direct mail and print campaigns. They still generate a large amount of revenue for him and have had a constant client response.

I heard a graphic designer on television once say that, in the digital age, with everyone behind computer terminals all day and all over the world, they are going to want to go home and surround themselves with things made of wood. They will want to sit in a comfortable chair, at an oak table or desk, under a potted tree, and read a paper product they can hold in their hands. As an information marketer, do not forget this. See how you can integrate this philosophy into your business.

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