As you may remember, I ended last week feeling extremely overwhelmed. So, when today’s Product Creation Masterclass e-mail came, I opened it with some trepidation.
I wondered if I was going to finish the day in even greater overwhelm or would today’s activity somehow pull me out of the pits and back on the path toward creating my first profitable digital product?
The purpose of lesson six was to create an outline for my eBook. Not a highly-detailed outline I could begin writing from, but a conceptual – high level – outline to help me collect my thoughts and give me something I could send to my two-person chiropractor focus group for feedback.
Creating a digital product begins with an outline and today’s lesson got me there.
Step 1: Brainstorm every topic idea I could think of that might go into the book. You probably remember that during the brainstorming process, you’re not supposed to analyze the idea’s value or try to rationalize why it should or shouldn’t be included…you just write down everything that comes to mind.
Step 2: Look over all the topic ideas and divide them by how granular they are. For example, big ideas or concepts might become chapter topics and smaller, more actionable ideas might become sections within the chapter. No hard and fast rules here, but if the ideas can be broken down into a number of step-by-step directions, it’s probably a small idea.
Step 3: Group the small ideas underneath the big idea that make most sense.
While I see the value in their method, that’s just not how my brain works. Not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing, but it is a thing…
In a group setting, their way is very helpful and productive, but I find it more helpful and faster when I’m by myself to do something different.
Step 1: Make a list of the major topics I want to cover. This list became the chapter list for me.
Step 2: Go through each chapter one at a time and list out the topics I think should be covered in each chapter. Going chapter by chapter helps me think linearly rather than haphazardly. It helps me develop a sequence of topics to write about that flow and make sense.
Step 3: Review the entire outline and see if there are any holes. I try to imagine beginning to write each section and ask myself, “What am I actually going to talk about in this section?”
Step 4: Go over all the chapter and section headings and rewrite them in my target market’s language.
Step 5: Send the outline out for feedback.
Here is what I came up with. Please feel free to ask questions or give me feedback in the comments.
I started today's exercise with a feeling of dread because I felt so far behind. But as I walked down the path ConvertKit laid out, I gained momentum and encouragement.
In addition to finishing the outline, I gained a much better idea of where I'd like the project to head. As I was thinking through the project, I came up with additional ways to frame my ideas...ways I believe will be more appealing to my target market.
So - in the final assessment - I'm in a much better place than I left off last week; both mentally and from a product perspective.
If you have any questions of comments about my outline, please leave a comment below.