Why You Need to Be Building a Product

“It’s okay to be in the service industry, but building a product is where the money’s at.” These wise words come from a trusted advisor who was encouraging me to think deeper about building income streams.

Building Something

I can’t say that he’s wrong. In fact, if I were to calculate sales of the ebook I launched last month, I’d have a healthier bank account at this very moment. True, not everyone who downloaded the book for free would pay for the same thing. But many would and, at $9 or $10 a pop, that would be a good payday.

I’ve stressed this elsewhere, but I believe we’re at a point where people will need to build multiple revenue streams to excel. Not just survive, any desk job with a paycheck can help you do that. But really, truly, honestly excel to the point where you get to do some really cool things.

Does this frighten you? Have you seen this at work in your own life? When I sit down and look at where I have income coming in, here’s what I find:

  • Amazon affiliates
  • A salary and a stipend
  • Small contracting projects
  • The occasional speaking gig (although, these are becoming less and less frequent because of the extensive speaking we do at Monk)

I see a gaping hole in there for product. Product development is where I’m focusing a lot of my thought and energy, as it’s the key to my financial freedom. Yours too.

Here are a few ideas I’ve toyed around with:

  • Continue writing ebooks, both free and paid.
  • Develop a physical product that benefits remote/virtual workers.
  • Develop social media and productivity resources.
  • Build the ever-elusive app.

Time will tell if any of these will get past the planning stages, but I’m gearing my thinking this way. I think you should too. After all, few of us actually push ourselves to our limits. So why not give it a go?

This is all an experiment. I’d love to hear how yours is going. Let me know in the comments below and we can learn together!

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7 comments
tres johnson
tres johnson

my goal this week(post bigomaha) is to come up with 5 new projects to start. hopefully one of them will stick. this post helps me think about what i need to do. thanks man!

Brandon Robbins
Brandon Robbins

Great thoughts here. I'm thinking through this process as well. Writing pieces/guides seem to be my best thing at the moment. I'm hoping to come up with something a bit more significant. I'd love to see you release some social media/productivity resources.

Nics Cahill
Nics Cahill

What a great post Justin. I totally agree with what you are saying. Currently I am looking at two products which I would like to develop. I really do feel they are the key. Have a great one

Adam Hann
Adam Hann

Good stuff. I've been thinking about this as well. I feel like the "strengths" I bring to the table are more thinking/planning/strategic strengths so I've had a hard time thinking what product I could make. I'm sure it's there, just haven't stumbled across it yet. I'm excited you are thinking this way.

Joseph Lalonde
Joseph Lalonde

Working on it Justin! With my blog being just over 6 months old, I know I have a lot of work ahead of me. But money is slowly trickling in and it's more than I had before.

Jason Vana
Jason Vana

I'm working on developing multiple streams of revenue myself. I currently work a part-time job that, quite honestly, doesn't pay worth a crap. It's the only thing I've been able to find in the area where I live. So, to counter that, I've started doing graphic design and brand management contracts for businesses. I've started raising missions support through my college ministry. I'm looking at developing more free and paid resources to offer through Ignite and through my personal website. I'm also looking into sites like clickworkers.com where I can get paid to proofread documents for companies. I think having multiple streams of income really is a safer route, especially in today's economy where businesses are closing and people are losing their jobs. If I would have had more streams of revenue when I lost my job, I would have been in a much better state when the project shut down and I was out of a job.