Every Product Is a How to Product

Hi everyone! This is more help on coming up with an idea and outlining your product. It should help alleviate your stress of thinking you have to come up with some AMAZING, awe inspiring product.

No product is mind blowing. None. Hate to break it to you, but you’re not inventing the phone or discovering electricity – you’re simply sharing good information in a thorough way.

Some you get more nuggets out of or enjoy more than others. (toe curling). Someone mentioned sometimes being disappointed in knowing 75% of the information in a book they buy, but think of it optimistically – you’re getting a 25% boost in knowledge. That’s great!

I consider products like a stepping stone – every rung on the ladder it helps me climb is a positive thing.

Quit trying to think of some dramatic twist and concentrate on being a good sharer.

Start with a How To Outline and later change your titles. Let’s look at two niche examples.

How to Relieve Stress – book title

then your chapter titles…

– How to Use Aromatherapy
– How to Eliminate Toxic People from Your Life
– How to Eat Better for Less Stress
– How to Get More Sleep
o How to turn your bedroom into a sanctuary
o How to use white noise for better sleep
* How to figure out which white noise works for you.
* How to shop for a good deal on a white noise machine

Turn that outline into a non How to Outline:

6 Ways to Destress Your Life in an Instant – book title

Then turn your chapter titles into non how to titles…

– Use Common Scents That Soothe Your Soul
– Say Goodbye to People Who Drag You Down Into Depression
– Eat to Fortify Your Body and Mind Against Stress
– Sleep More, Stress Less
o Décor and Design That Decreases the Occurrence of Insomnia
o Block Out Sleep Interruptions With a White Noise Machine

Now let’s look at a different niche – and how to create a broad how to outline and then turn it into a specific slanted outline for one target audience…

How to Make Money Ghostwriting – book title that’s for a broad, catch-all audience

– How to find out if your writing is good enough.
– How to create a portfolio if you have no clients.
– How to write a good profile.
– How to get ghostwriting clients
o How to get clients on Elance.
o How to find clients on marketing forums
* How to use a signature file to get more business
* How to approach clients with a freebie for more work deal

Now – think about the various target audiences for ghostwriting. Stay at home moms, people who need supplemental incomes, retirees, and something in the news lately – college students and grads who see ZERO job prospects. So let’s choose them to morph our how to outline into a slant just for them.

Ghostwriting for College Graduates Who Can’t Find Work – new book title

– Can you write for consumers instead of your professor?
– Replace term papers with a talent-showcasing portfolio
– Playing up your college experience with prospective clients
– Finding clients who love hiring college grads for ghostwriting jobs
o Paid and free markets for student ghostwriters
o Socialize your way to success (since they love web 2.0, we could talk about finding clients that way AND making sure they don’t have shady stuff online that might hurt them)

Forex, dog training, dating, making money, health – they all fit the how to outline model. I can’t think of one that doesn’t.

Tiff 😉

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46 Responses to “Every Product Is a How to Product”

  • This was really helpful. I was looking over my product outline and this actually helped me find some stuff I was missing.

  • Buddy T says:

    Wow, that really helped. Love the way you just pared that down into east to chew pieces, if I may use a food metaphor.

  • This was a great way for me to tweak my working outline as well. This product is going to be massive and I love the how to outline being a working outline until the end. Wow, so much easier to work with like that.

  • Thanks Tiff – this is an great exercise that can be used for product creation and blog post outlines too.

    Gonna go work on a few examples for myself 🙂

  • Alex Newell says:

    I Love this “No product is mind blowing” – I don’t know how many blog posts I’ve read where the bloggers insist that we produce “awesome content” and all will be well. Sometimes it’s “Epic content”.

    That gets us all stumped as we look at our own very good writing and reckon that it’s just not awesome or epic or some other BS hypey word.

    Really useful.

    • Tiffany says:

      Yes it gets intimidating. I get that we need to TRY and not slap up crap, but it doesn’t have to make jaws drop.

  • Is it just me, or does this video start with an upside down image??? Am I going cray cray?

  • Thanks for pointing this out Victoria…I didn’t want to ask, I thought I was going LOCO myself….not yet…not yet…

  • Pat Busch says:

    Hi Tiff,
    Thanks for all the steps you are giving before we even get started on this challenge.

    My project is about what I would have done differently in my reflexology practice, but it will be for any holistic therapy practice.

    I have my outline started and make changes as I get inspired and watch your videos again and again.

    I found 2 books I’m going to purchase & am excited about that.

  • Mary Kathan says:

    I like that way of putting your own slant to it…thanks Tiff!


  • Ashley says:

    Thanks for getting my ass into gear Tiffany I have the blog up and now I am going to create my first product only kinlde and its fiction.

    I know you have a fiction book on kindle and was wondering a few things.

    1)Where’d you get cover art done
    2)How do you promote fiction as apposed to nonfiction
    3)How do you deal with reviews that say your book is not ‘realistic enough’ or ‘unplausible’

    Has noone who reviewed it with those statements every heard of Hunger games, Harry Potter or Twilight they are all very plausabile to me 🙂

    • Tiffany says:

      Fiction is a good start Ashley!

      1.) Rich at QuickSiteStudio.com – OMG he does good, affordable work.

      2.) Wow this is a doozy – I recommend if you ever can, taking Geoff Shaw’s course. There are all sorts of things about promoting Kindle in general but I would join groups on Goodreads for starters. They have groups where you can promote your book and just being involved in groups gets yours exposed.

      3.) Normally I don’t respond to negative comments. I have – you can see mine on The Feast. If everyone hates it then maybe you need to tweak but otherwise screw the haters!

  • Wow! I am in awe…I get yet another shout out from one of my previous comments! Either I am doing commenting right or your just being to kind! 🙂

    This was a very good point and I appreciate hearing it. It’s probably something that I needed to hear hence I spurred this blog post on.

    Thanks again,


    P.S. you know you could always come to my blog and comment and maybe it will help me stir up some great content for my readers as well! 🙂

  • Love that reverse method! So clever and creative! You find some nuggets you hadn’t thought of before too! Love finding nuggets…gold nuggets..!! LOL!

  • Tasha Marie says:

    GREAT Post Tiffany! I love to come back here and see all the motivation you help us all with! It is amazing!

    Love the comment about blog rounds….I recently came out of lurking….but I am having a little difficulty keeping my head above water too! 🙂 Have not had a lot of time to go read other people’s blogs….but I am getting there.

    Thank you Tiffany for the motivation and the encouragement!

    Have an Awesome weekend everyone!

  • I’ve barely got my nose above water at the moment. Laptop I’m working on defaults to ‘Not Responding’ and takes around 90 seconds to save anything.

    Thank you for fleshing out further the outline process. I’m working on my own outline, I’m not sure if it will be an ebook or just a series of tutorials.

    Is Comment Luv not working or have you turned it off. I love seeing what other people just wrote, it encourages me to go visit.

    • Tiffany says:

      I uninstalled it with almost every other plugin until later. I was past my 25 process limit on my HG account. But everyone can still hyperlink their name to their latest blog post.

  • Ruth Clark says:

    HG disabled my plugins, too. I went back and immediately and turned Akismet on and got rid of everything I was not using. I turned CommentLuv back on and so far so good. It’s my theme that’s giving me nightmares.

    You get what you pay for and I’m going to have to change at least once more. This is a freebie.

    I am going to go with a “How to” on quilting. I taught myself several years ago and have made some beautiful creations.

    Quilting is a great way to relax, gives you a really good feeling when you have a work of art, and is useful, too. I know your sister Jeni loves to quilt. I have a bag that (I think) she made.

    Anyway, I can confidently do that and I want the guys to know up front that quilting is for men also. There are some famous personalities who quilt.

    Ricky Tims and Alex Anderson have a TV show about quilting. Ricky is a Country/Western singer. And makes gorgeous quilts. Anyway, that’s my idea.
    My latest post is: http://ruth-clark.com/5-tips-to-build-a-list/ and is about how to offer a free product when you don’t have a product to offer. Thanks for all the work you’re doing for us Tiffany.

  • Buddy says:

    Whoa! Your video went all upside down on me!

  • sam says:

    Hi Tiffany:
    Nice to hear from you. Great info in this post as always. There is no substitute for providing good quality info to your readers. Take Care,Sam

  • Sarah says:

    Hi Tiff
    long time no speak..been reading your posts but overwhelmed with back pain issues and sort of drowned a bit..However, your 90 day challenge has spurred me into action and this post has got my brain working again.Am going to re read your shiny new object syndrome book again to clear my head of those pesky distractions..and buy a BIG pack of Post-It notes to leave myself messages around the house to, STAY FOCUSED! Thinking maybe a back pain product??? That works with your How To approach and is somewhat close to my heart at present..looking forward to the challenge and WOW what an awesome group of people offering ideas, support and encouragement..you rock Tiff!

    • Tiffany says:

      Oh no Sarah I’m so sorry. Back pain is crippling. Sometimes a product on your own problem is a good way to go!

  • Richard says:

    Missed your daily input but I just knew you’d be immersed in a project.



  • Debi J says:

    Great tips as always gal! Figured you’d be nose to the grindstone for a bit to make sure everything’s wrapped up in a bow before the challenge starts. 🙂

    I’ve been going thru all my new shiny objects… and with the number I just bought, I know you’re right about the “awe-inspiring” is rare. So far I’m finding good, not as good, and hmmmm…. now I like that one! sort of products. LOL

  • Janet says:

    Great advice as usual Tiffany

    Just one question about one of the comments. When you say you were past your 25 process limit with HG – what did you mean??

    I know you mean HostGator 🙂

    • Tiffany says:

      Well I don’t even know what that means LOL! But apparently plugins have processes and so mine was overlimit.

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