How A Failed eBook Helped Me Sell $39K In One Month

Photo Credit: Éole via Compfight cc

 

Is it a failure or an experiment?

That is the question. 

They can be one and the same but one leads to...

  • defeat
  • loss of confidence 
  • discouragement 

And one leads to...

  • excitement
  • knowledge
  • innovation

Let me ask you a simple question: Are you afraid of failure?

Of course you are - who isn't?

Failing sucks. 

What would it mean for your business & life if fear of failure wasn't a factor?

  • Would you accomplish more?
  • Would you try more things?
  • Would you be more confident?
  • Would you feel more in control?

What If I told you that you could do this by simply re-framing failure into an experiement 

Now that is quite a drastic difference isn't it?

Experimenting doesn't sound so bad does it?

Heck, now you're like a genius inventor every time you fail (cough...clear throat) I mean... experiment

Take a look at how Thomas Edison viewed failure:

My Failed eBook

When I first started my online business I had no clue what I was doing. But I wasn't afraid to try stuff. I knew that eBooks were hot so I decided to create one and start selling it. Sounded simple enough. 

This is what I came up with:

If you want it - it's yours. Just click on this link to download. If you don't...well...I understand. Nobody else did either. 

It's not that it wasn't a great eBook.

I mean look at it.

It's beautiful. 

But no one wanted it. Not one download. All that effort put into creating the ebook was wasted. 

Or was it?

Could I have said this sucks...this doesn't work...they said ebooks were the way to go...etc etc. 

Sure. 

Could I have gotten discouraged and given up. Yep. Came close. 

But you know what, I decided to re-frame the failure as an experiment and instead ask myself "what can I learn from this?"

The Importance of Listening 

You see it may have been a great ebook BUT - it's not what my audience was interested in. I tried to create something that I thought they wanted instead of something that they actually wanted. 

HUGE LESSON there. 

I hope you got that. I'll say it again. Stop creating stuff that you THINK your audience wants and find out what they ACTUALLY want (whether you agree or not) and create THAT. 

During this eBook "experiment" I learned some valuable lessons. 

  • I learned how to research my audience
  • I learned the importance of figuring out their wants, needs, desires, and fears. 
  • I learned how to listen and hear what they were saying. 

I started looking for problems that I could help solve. I read through blog comments, forums, Twitter hashtags and Facebook groups to find the conversations these people were having. 

I started searching for pain points and struggles like a miner pans for gold. 

It's amazing what you'll hear when you really start listening. 

It's through this exact process that I discovered people's struggle with the software called Scrivener. I heard the same struggle about the learning curve over and over. I knew Scrivener well and I knew I could help. Creating a Scrivener training course was by far not what I thought I would be doing when I started my online business. It was through listening and finding out what the people wanted and needed and then creating it for them that led to success. 

I went from zero sales of an eBook that I thought people wanted to $39,890 in sales (just last month alone) of a Scrivener course that they actually wanted (and needed). I don't say that to brag but to get your attention and show you what is possible. 

And remember...it all started with a failed eBook. 

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What About You?

Do you have an example of a failure that led to something great? I would love to hear it. Share away in the comments below...