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A good question that comes up on many occasions, even many of my close friends who see me sitting here working away whenever I feel like it. They often ask me, ‘How can I start my own business?’ The response comes that you need an idea first for your own product. After a quick pondering look towards the sky, they turn back and reply, but I don't have my own products what can I sell?
Well, the simple answer is if you don't have your own product you're going to have a hard time selling anything, online or offline. There's so much raw promotion power that comes with having your own products. Look at it this way, without them, you can't joint venture, you can't have an army of affiliates promoting for you, you can't control the sales process and gain new knowledge through your research, you can't build up your resources for future promotion, in fact, there isn't much good to come out of not having your own product.
So make one. The longer time you spend looking around in your target market, the easier it will be to come up with ideas for your own product. I don't expect to plant this guide in front of a random person who thinks all we do is send e-mails out all day and scam people (which seems to be the usual joke when I mention to someone that I'm in online marketing) and then tell them to create a product out of the blue.
In much the same way, if this was literally your first day in the business I wouldn't expect you to be able to go out and create your own online marketing product. You need to have the knowledge first, even if you're not creating an info product. Once you've found yourself mingling with the crowd and getting down and buying products and talking to people, it's very rare that you can come out of a situation without coming up with a new idea, even out of the simplest of situations.
A good example of this is a conversation I had a couple of weeks ago with a fellow marketer. He'd just written a shed load of reports and wanted to do something a little special with them. Unfortunately he had to go through each one manually and do this by hand. We just could not find a piece of software to do this for him (Sorry, I can't tell you exactly what it is, because it sounded like that would be his next venture). But as you can see, just by living as an online marketer, it's real easy to come up with product ideas that are solutions to problems you might have.
How about revelations? I've had these too, not necessarily with online marketing, but when you're trying to figure out how to do something, and after a long while thinking, it comes to you, you try it out, and it works like a charm. That's valuable information you have there that could easily be sold. Remember that when you come to creating a product, it doesn't have to be a piece of furniture or something that costs hundreds of dollars to manufacture, it can be something as simple as information contained within your head that people will want to buy, or a piece of software, that also generally has low overheads, as you can pay someone to complete the build and then go off and sell it.
The choices really are endless, and the more ideas you come up with, the more ideas those ideas will spawn. It only takes one idea to create a five or six product venture that could last you a whole year. Whatever you do though, don't skip over this. Don't say ah well, I'll just promote other peoples stuff, because you'll find yourself in the same position this time next year going about things like that. It's all about creating products that allow you to build your resources, and starting out not creating your own, is out of the question.