Imagine if there was no difference in the quality of products you purchased.
You wouldn’t have the fun of buying clothes at a discount store or from a couture designer…There would be no difference in purchasing a Craigslist used car or a brand new luxury Lexus…And you’d get the same experience vacationing at a cheap hostel or a five-star resort.Fortunately, every product or service you use exists on a quality spectrum. You can decide whether you want something high-end, low-end, or mid-range. And that allows the marketplace to hold even more products – like yours!Whether you’ve already launched or are just thinking about launching, it’s important to identify where your product falls and where you WANT it to fall on the spectrum.Do you want your product to be like McDonalds……appealing to a mass audience while selling many products of low quality on the cheap?Do you want your product to be a fancy steakhouse……guaranteeing a quality experience at a premium price for a niche market?Or maybe your product is somewhere in the middle……providing a perfectly adequate experience at a reasonable cost?It’s important to note that we’re not saying that being upscale or downscale is right or wrong. After all, McDonalds is a billion dollar corporation that started out selling cheap burgers. Our point is, there’s a demand for products and services at all points on the spectrum. But it’s vitally important for you to understand your own goals for your product, and what your target market expects from you.We know you’re capable of “steakhouse quality” and pulling in steakhouse revenue. Even if it’s just something to aim for – why not aim high?Let’s talk about the three main factors that set a steakhouse product apart from a McDonalds product, and how you can adapt them to your online course.
Imported Kobe beef will outmatch a Big Mac every time. (Although sometimes a Big Mac hits the spot.) Excellence is the buzzword here – offering an undeniably top-notch product will never fail you.Here’s how to upgrade your product content to Kobe levels of quality:
- Include valuable multimedia offerings like video, audio, or infographics.
- Add interactive learning tools like worksheets or checklists.
- Continually optimize your content based on data you pull from customer feedback surveys and email open rates.
No one would accuse McDonalds of having fantastic ambience.A steakhouse, on the other hand, makes you feel like it’s a special occasion and that you’re a valued customer. The service is impeccable, the decor is luxurious, even the bathrooms are nice. And it’s probably situated in a beautiful building in a more upscale neighborhood.Ambiance and quality are two separate things. Ambiance is the combination of small details that make people think – “Wow, a lot of care has been put into this!”How do you upgrade your product’s ambience?
- Ensure your customer service and overall experience is seamless. Customers should feel at all times that they’re in good hands, whether they’re browsing your website, purchasing your product, or watching a course video.
- Upgrade your “window dressing.” Have all your visual assets looked at by a professional designer. That includes your website, emails, and product content.
- Take care with every detail. Even something as small as automatically updating the copyright at the bottom of your website to reflect the current year can add a sense of freshness and attention to detail.
Whether you like it or not, what restaurant you go to sends a message to the rest of the world about your status.How do you ensure that your product is conveying the right “status” message?
- Be exclusive.
Don’t assume everyone is interested in your product – be selective and target those who will be truly interested.
Turning away customers (for appropriate reasons, of course) also aids in exclusivity. By indicating your product is “only for top performers” or “only for people ready to start their own business,” you’ve made everyone reading your website want to be a part of your restricted club.
- Understand what your customers value.
Above all, you’ve got to know your audience and what THEY believe conveys status. A Fortune 500 CEO and a twentysomething start-up founder will look for different “status symbols” in a product. Deliver appropriately!
- Set smart prices.
Even if you’ve created a world-class product, if you charge one dollar for it, people will view it with skepticism. You’d never buy a steak off a dollar menu, would you? Don’t be afraid to charge a premium price for your premium product, even if it might limit your potential number of customers.
We love marketer Amy Hoy’s take on the value of smart pricing:“Be like Apple: with 4% of the mobile phone market, they have nearly 50% of all profits.”
And it’s true – although Apple has a smaller customer base than some other brands, they’re willing to pay for the status (and excellence) of an Apple product.
The key to all of this?
- Know who your target market is.
- Understand what they want out of your product.
- And provide them with the quality of experience they want.
One more thing!
Don’t worry that there are other products on the market that share your desired spot on the spectrum.There is always room for one more in the marketplace – including you.Otherwise, would there be over 30,000 McDonalds restaurants around the world…and thousands of other burger joints, chain restaurants, and steakhouses also doing business?Is your product at a McDonalds or steakhouse level right now? Which one do you want to become, and what’s one step you need to take to get there?