Selling services gives you a lucrative income. Whether you’re a freelance artist or a creative director, your income depends on the number of clients.
But what if you found a way to boost your profit even further?
Productisation lets you take your creative skills and present it as a product.
The downside of selling services alone is that you are tied to your time. Even when you have several employees working for your business, you can only serve as many clients. This limits your opportunities and prevents you from scaling profits.
Repackaging your services as products, on the other hand, lets you serve more clients and maximise your creative business.
Learn how productisation works and how it benefits your business.
What does it mean to “productise” your service?
Productisation packages a skill, service, or software and offers it as a solution to customers.
Here’s how productisation differs from a service-oriented business.
With providing services, you:
- Perform tasks on an individual basis for the client
- Customise work based on the client’s request
- Work within a limited time frame
- Earn a fixed amount
Meanwhile, productising your services lets you:
- Sell as many ready-made items as the market will buy
- Repackage services into reproducible formats
- Provide different ways to cater to your target market
- Gain better profit margins
Freelancers are not the only ones that benefit from productisation. Even startups can scale their revenues by offering products. Since they have a wider talent pool, small businesses can produce more product variations to sell.
A successful business adapts to customers who may come from a different market. Successful productisation will help you to enter more diverse markets. It also helps your creative business gather more income using less time.
Your customers may choose products over services for a variety of reasons:
They require your services knowledge but can’t afford them or don’t need them on a regular basis.
- They prefer to use your service on their own terms and time schedule, then apply it themselves.
- They only need a portion of your service to fix a particular problem.
At the end of the day, productising your services works both ways. As a business owner, you get the most out of your profit potential. For customers, it provides them with a portion of your service without the downtime and cost it requires.
5 Ways to Productise Your Creativity + Success Stories
One easy way for creatives to productise their services is by creating information packages that they can sell on a one-time or subscription basis.
Here are some ideas and examples that will kickstart you into creating products for your audience.
If you’re on a rut on how to start turning your service into a product, books are an easy choice. Whether they are in the form of ebooks or the physical ones, books showcase your expertise in a particular field — and caters to your target market and beyond.
Unlike the do-it-for-you solutions that your business currently offers, books offer a lifetime solution — they teach customers how to fix a problem themselves.
An American branding company called Worstofall Designs makes a good example. The founders wrote a book on how to transform from a traditional branding agency to a highly productised company.
As a creative, you have the skills and experience — but how do you package them as a product? The simple answer is to teach them to others.
Paid courses and online tutorials are becoming more popular products among creative freelancers and businesses — and for good reason. They get a scalable income without the relative effort.
Unlike books, online courses get more leverage. In this digital era, not everyone has the time — and patience — to finish an entire book to get the service that they need.
Selling templates is another way to make the most of your creativity.
Graphic artists can sell their logos or icon packs on platforms like Graphicriver. Writers can earn from selling sales letter templates. Buyers will only need to fill in the blanks with pertinent information about their business — and they get instant sales copy without the high cost.
Web developers can decide to create and sell software related to their services. Whether its mobile apps or desktop software — selling software provides lucrative income.
In this fast-paced world, people need a particular service ASAP. And this can be achieved with a software that caters to their needs.
An example of this is the social media automation tool called Meet Edgar. Roeder Studios, the creator, started as a social media marketing consultancy. After a few years, the company started selling courses. More years later, it launched Meet Edgar — a software-as-a-service approach that bills its customers on a monthly to yearly basis.
In just 13 months, Roeder Studios was able to gain 3,000 paying users — which generated over US$150,000 monthly recurring revenue.
Many creatives produce a certain product and sell the licence to it. This allows them to maximise profit even more than giving customers exclusive access to a single product itself.
If you’re a budding photographer, selling stock photos makes a great business idea. Musicians and sound engineers can sell licences to their music and audio. Designers can sell licences to almost anything they create — whether that be illustrations or typefaces.
For the creative industry, the possibilities are endless.
Cartoonist Mark Anderson — who does commissioned illustrations as his main service — has productised his skill by selling individual licences to his art. Plus, Mark also sells a subscription service that allows customers to use his work for as long as the subscription allows.
Pricing your productised service can be tricky. This decision requires careful and honest analysis — that is if you don’t want to end up having little to no ROI.
If you’re still contemplating on how much to charge, consider these questions:
- What is your experience level? Is it worth upping your fees?
- What will target market pay for your productised service?
- How much do competitors charge for their productised service?
- What makes your service unique or superior enough to warrant a higher price?
Now that you know how productisation grows your creative business, the next question is — where do you start selling?
Find a good platform to launch your products. To boost your credibility even further, get your own domain name and create an ecommerce site. Consider your options and scale your business today.