Here is a quick thing I wrote for another project that I’m re-publishing here covering a very simple template for quickly and easily creating a new book, product, program, course, curriculum or content of any kind that seems to resonate really well with ( my) readership.
Crash Course In…….Anything
A template for LAUNCHING with less
Think of it as teaching something to ONE person
The focus isn’t on padding the writing, or even writing a book at all, instead, just communicating one central idea with concise clarity and with walk away value for your audience.
Is your ideal audience – he or she who craves information in an area you have experience and expertise – better for having read your book, purchased your product, or consumed your course – or not?
Poetic prose may impress many and entertain some…..but solving a problem, or teaching people something they’ll remember forever is far more important.
A CRASH course template is ideal because it
- Communicates conciseness in the very title
- It tells people they are getting the KEY ideas and core competences – not flowery fluff
- It forces you to keep it simple – to strip away the superfluous, and launch it withe less. (which, as we all know to well, the focus on adding MORE, and the perpetual pursuit of perfection, is what keeps so many from every launching anything at all)
- It’s scalable, rinsable and repeatable. You can apply the same crash course concept to just about any individual idea in your niche knowledge or area of expertise – and effectively create copious amounts of content – and teach many individual ideas quickly and consistently, using this single template.
- Of course, I could run off a huge list of why you ought to consider this approach if you are trying in vain to write a book, create a course, or produce a product, but in keeping with the spirit of my own strategy, I’m just going to list the steps i’ve been using quite effectively myself, below.
A Crash Course in…….
– Use this area to Communicate the ONE big benefit you hope to offer when the book, product, or course is complete
- THIS is what it is
- THIS is who it’s for
- This is how it will help you
- This is why you need it
- This is where to begin
- This is how to start
- This is what your life looks like now
- This is what your life looks like thereafter ……
The more focused you can get to one central concept per product (be it a book a course or otherwise), the better i’ve found this process to work for ME, and the more I’ve found the audience will appreciate the value they’ve gotten from your work.
Practices, Exercises and Techniques
Specific techniques that can be tried and applied immediately based on the core concepts of the content.
For example, in my mindfulness oriented products that are using this template, a Crash Course in Compassion has 3 very specific meditation techniques used for centuries to cultivate “kindness”, with some of my own personal preferences for increasing the effectiveness of these specific practices for ME.
In my experience using this approach, This is the MOST important part to get “right”.
Everyone consuming the content, whether they like the content or not, can try and apply these exercises on day 1 to test the big promise I’m making.
If I fail to connect the concepts to actionable exercises that cash out the claims I’m making…..my credibility, and the connection i’m trying to cultivate with a community, will certainly suffer. But, no matter how SHORT the “crash course” is, – if the exercises/practices/techniques work as promised, people tend to be pretty elated they’ve connected with your content.
Q and A
This is a good area to “pad” the book with additional content if you feel the need to add more to it prior to publishing. Q and A are easy to write, accessible and easy to understand, and typically very helpful (and appreciated) by the reader. The first book I ever published on Amazon was entirely Q and A – and was the easiest to write as well.
Make a list of 7, 10 or even 20 things and address common mistakes, misconceptions, misunderstandings and frequently asked questions people have directly related to the core concepts and specific practices covered.
Talk about challenges, obstacles, and ways to overcome them as well. (easy, appreciated and inspiring to folks who need an extra ounce of reassuring before they dive in and do what you recommend)
Create some simple assignments that allow your audience to test your advice in the real world. It’s amazing how adding “homework”, and specific assignments really can add some sort of feeling of taking your content, course, product or program off the page (or pixel) and into the real world in ways that they truly appreciate.
For example – in my “crash course in compassion”, i’m asking my own audience to test the concepts i’m covering, the practices i’m preaching they try, in very specific scenarios in their own lives, to see if it leads to more happiness, better relationships and so forth, and it certainly has done in mine.
Thus far, based on the feedback I’ve gotten, out of about 25 respondents on an advance copy edition, the “homework assignments” were rated as the thing they liked the most. (which made me feel great, as it was the thing i enjoyed writing the most as well)
Other books, your community or membership site, your blog, your newsletter, your store, your Eharmony profile, your family tree on Ancestry.com or whatever else you’d like to share with the world 🙂
There you have it. LaunchiT! with Less.
A crash course in……ANYTHING.
- Core Concepts/Ideas
- Q and A
- Homework Assignments
- Additional Resources