How to Sell a Digital Product Before Building It

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How to Sell a Digital Product Before Building It


How to Sell a Digital Product Before You Build It

  • Start your product research.
  • Gauge the audience’s interest.
  • Promote your product.
  • Keep marketing your digital product.
  • Repeat.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published on 5/16/18 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehension.

Creating a digital course is a great way to engage with your audience and generate extra revenue.

Your small marketing team has come up with a fabulous idea that you know will also be an awesome solution for your target audience.

They’re going to be lining up to buy this digital dream of yours, and you can sit back and watch the dollars come rolling in.

Before you get too far ahead of yourself, consider this:

There is a way to confirm that your audience even wants this product before you get deep into creating the digital product.

Imagine if you created something and no one wanted it? That would be a HUGE waste of your time and money. 


It’s better to test, move a step ahead, test, and repeat.

Here is the five-step process you can follow to sell your digital product  – before you even build a single segment of it.

1. Start Your Product Research

Follow the 80-20 rule.

20% of your time should be spent on creating your digital course.

Yes, you heard that right.

The best way to sell digital goods is to get confirmation along the way.


There’s no sense spending 100 hours creating a course on leadership development if it’s really networking skills your audience needs.

Keep this in mind as you plan your course, and ask these questions:

  • What small, low-ticket products can I create to test demand?
  • What will I consider “success”?
  • Who is my target audience?
  • What is the best way to reach them?

The rest of your time, that 80%, is to be spent on promotion and marketing.

As people will gain awareness of your product, you will get some sales. This is confirmation that the audience is interested in your product.


Then, invest a little more time and take your initial test product create a larger and bigger product. Start the cycle again, and see if there’s interest.

Eventually, you will get enough confirmation that the demand is there that you can give yourself the “green light” to create a full-fledged course or membership site.

And once you do, you’ll see the sales roll on in, and your revenue increase dramatically. 

(And remember, this is recurring revenue that requires no time investment on your part because you’ve already done the hard work!)

2. Gauging The Audience’s Interest

You need to get the word out about your digital product – even while it’s in the creation stage.

Exposure will not only help you gauge demand, but it will also get your target audience excited that your course or product is on the way.


Obviously, they need to know what it’s all about – all the ways it will benefit them and the problems it will solve.

It’s also a good idea to give them a little preview of the finished product.

For example, share the introduction to the course or the first unit/lesson.

You’ll get a little breathing room to accumulate sales and to get your product finished (and build all the subsequent modules).

To gauge the audience’s interest, start with your email list.

Let them know what you’re working on and ask for their feedback. What do they think about the topic? How do they feel about the concept you have in mind? Would they buy?

Pro tip:

Send a pre-sale link to anyone that says YES to the last question.

This means that you’ll start earning revenue before the final product is out.

It’s also a great way to commit your time to actually finishing this project – people paid for it and now you need to deliver.

3. Get Your Promotion On

Once your digital product (no matter the state of “readiness” or testing you’re at) is ready for sale, it’s time to go public.

Here’s what your small marketing team’s strategy could look like:

  1. Email your subscribers an outline that explains the benefits of purchasing your product.
  2. Keep emailing. Engage your subscribers in Q&A, share case studies and provide testimonials that show your product works.
  3. Choose a few of your blog posts (relevant to your product) that have already been published and add links to your sales page.  
  4. Put a link to your sales page in your social media posts, as well. Make sure to link to the sales page everywhere  – on your website, social media covers, etc. Don’t waste an opportunity to promote your product!.
  5. Make your social media headers/covers all about your digital product during the time you’re launching.
  6. Write new blog posts that highlight the way your product solves problems and offers solutions.

4. Don’t Stop Too Soon

You need to keep up your marketing efforts longer than you think.


During this time, consistently send emails that send your subscribers to your blog posts, social media and your sales page.

Get people excited about your digital course and what they’ll gain.

5. Rinse And Repeat

Keep testing the market and audience demand, gradually growing your product. That’s how to sell a digital product and KNOW that it will sell.

Go from offering an outline to the first chapter to the second chapter to the complete course to a mastermind group to a monthly subscription membership site.

The possibilities are endless  – and so is your revenue potential.

Final Thoughts

If you wait until your digital products are completed before you launch, market and sell them, you’ve waited too long.

Go slow, spread the word, build anticipation and make sales.

When the full digital product drops, your audience will be ready to dive in – and they’ll be eager to share your solutions with their colleagues.

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Josh Coffy

Josh has an exhaustive understanding of technology and a creative marketing approach that drives client results. In his free time, Josh does CrossFit and travels with his wife.