There’s so much to learn and as business owners, we love to absorb as much as humanly possible.
But that’s where the pitfall happens. We consume and consume and consume. If we applied half of the actionable information that we consume, we would have zero time in the next 10 years for anything else. (And yes, that figure is statistically backed by science ;) ).
Seriously though, like myself, I would assume that you have had periods where you are reading, watching, listening to amazing and valuable information, taking notes and making countless todos for days on end.
Especially around the end of the year when all the sales and marketing kicks into overdrive we get teased with all these shiny objects that seem to be the answer to all our questions.
Financial Aspect to think about
If you haven’t already listened to A184 - How to budget as a freelancer? where you will learn that if you are buying something for $100 and you bring in 20% profit, you need to bring in $500 of revenue, not get another $100.
Let’s evaluate another thing here for a second.
Most products and apps serve a purpose, not all purposes.
Most of the marketing around these products, if you look, market to a specific audience with a specific problem.
It’s us that say “Oh I need that!” or “This has to be better than what I’m using right now.”
This goes for courses and education as well.
I want to share with you, 5 questions to ask yourself when evaluating an educational product.
Has the person/company selling the information done it in the past? Are they still doing it?
Not everyone does what they say to do. They preach things that they’ve never tried.
The business world moves fast. Sales, marketing, and client management are the fastest movers.
The specific strategies and tactics that worked last year, 5 years, and 10 years ago, especially in client services, most likely will not work today.
Sure the methodology may apply still in some capacity, but collecting leads via a popup on your homepage saying “Join for updates” worked 8 years ago, but not today.
If the person no longer does what they are teaching, then for me, they aren’t up-to-date. I want to have the best possible information and strategies that are going to keep me out in front.
Am I getting the team or the individual and are they engaged?
I’ve purchased programs before thinking that I was getting the individual, but then didn’t even once see the individual. You know, the one that actually knows the thing being taught and sold me on buying.
Don’t get me wrong, there isn’t anything wrong with working with the team. It’s just that if that’s not conveyed up front, I feel a bit duped.
My thought too is that if the teacher is the one I’m looking to sign up with that has that “thing” I want, working with someone else, I may only get 80% of the “thing”.
What is available for free?
Do the research! Read some of the other content, listen to podcasts, watch videos of the instructor. Make sure that you can see yourself hanging out with that person.
If there’s just not a fit from a personality perspective, how likely are you to learn something from them.
Think back on the teachers in school that you didn’t like at all vs those that you still remember how awesome they were.
The other side of this is does their free content deliver value? Or is everything they put out lead you to buy something?
Their teaching ability can be explored here as well. If they don’t explain the steps or answer objections in an insightful way, maybe they aren’t the best teacher.
Where does this fit in with me?
Am I buying this for the “someday list” or is it something that will help me accomplish something today?
The “someday list” is great, but my experience with buying products that go in with this is that they collect that digital dust. It also falls into that trap of point 1.
By the time I get around to it, has a year passed?
If I’m working on something today or in the very near future and the program can help me accelerate learning and get to implementation faster, then I’m more likely to buy.
Can I find out about the course from someone who’s been there?
No doubt there are all sorts of testimonials and social proof being displayed about how awesome the program is.
Find those people on Twitter, FB, wherever and ask them what they liked and didn’t like about the program. That will help you in the evaluation department. Chances are that they bought it for a different reason than you would.
After evaluating the purchase for 24 hours and it still makes sense to go ahead and buy, then do it. But if not then don’t. If it’s good and worth it, it’ll be there when you are ready to buy.
If it’s not there, then you saved yourself a lot of wasted time and money.
Running your freelance business
More episodes in this topic:
What do you do when a crisis hits?
How to start building an email list as a freelancer?
How do you manage time wearing so many hats as a freelancer?
What software tools do you use for business? What is best?
How do you prevent, manage scope creep in your projects?
Do you schedule in time for exploring or reading articles online?
What is the best way to get income fast?
What happens if you can’t define a scope of work on a call?
What do I do first thing Monday morning?
How can I focus on my business when I’ve got a ton client work?
Do I have to be concerned with GDPR?
What are the tools and services that you use and would recommend to freelancers?
How do you have time for all that you do?
What podcasting gear do I use?
Does live chat bring you in business?
How do you followup with a lead after a proposal?
Did hiring a mentor really help you with starting up your business or your career?
What is my writing process
What is the easiest way to get a remote testimonial?
How do you determine a quality prospect?
How do you step away and actually take a vacation?
Are job boards reliable?
How to decrease the sales cycle or time to close?
How would you write a cold outreach email?
How to present different services that could potentially diminish your abilities in the minds of clients?
Should I bundle projects for clients or keep projects separate per client?
What product do you use for your business that you can’t live without?
What makes you stand out from other freelancers?
Do I drop this client?
How do I set a goal?
Do you meet leads and clients face-to-face?
How do I work “ON” my business and not “IN” my business?
What is the best structure for setting a goal?
How do you do a review of your week?
What do I say when a potential client says I’m too expensive?
What is activity based selling?
How to get more clients?
How to have a productive week?
Do you use a CRM for your business?
How do you choose the technology for your clients?
What is the structure of a weekly review?
What is the structure of a monthly review?
What are lead generation techniques to get me out of the feast and famine revenue cycle?
How do I know if I should buy a course?
What’s a polite way to tell existing clients you are raising your rates? And what is a reasonable percentage to go up?
How many email follow-ups should I send to a lead?
What do I do? I’m afraid to filter the tire kickers coming into my business because they are the only leads I have.
How to take the next step from contracting resource to solo business owner?
What do you think about Gutenberg? Schmutenberg!
How do I get better at sales?
How to overcome objections in sales?
How do I respond to an RFP?
How to respond to “I don’t need strategy, can you just do…”?
If you don’t have experience, how to you prove the quality without the education/experience?
How do you handle a client that has ghosted?
What do you ask during a sales call?
How to improve your sales process as a freelancer?
How to charge more as a freelancer?
How do you push past the imposter syndrome?
How do you segment your email list?
What to say when a client insists on adding something new?
What kind of content should I promote to potential clients?
Best of Season 3 - Get out of the comfort zone
Best of Season 3 - Building Relationships
S06 E12 - Undercharging, Targeting the Wrong Audience, and What You Should Do About It with Alex McClafferty
S03 Bonus - Tom McFarlin on Blogging, Balancing Work and Family, and Building a Business that Lasts
S09 E11 - Differentiation, Reputation, and Pivoting From the Top-Down with Peep Laja
S01 E11 - Kai Davis helping freelancers get more clients with outreach