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Do you write from a faith-based perspective? Struggle to sell to your audience while also serving them? If so, you are in the right place. Hope Writer member, Tia McNelly, and I chat about her question: “When my blog is centered on offering spiritual encouragement, how can I monetize that? I don’t want to try to sell Jesus. But at the same time, there’s got to be something that I could offer.”
I see this question quite a bit, and not even just in the faith-based space. I’ve even seen it in the parenting space with parents questioning if they should sell parenting advice. I’ve seen it in education and fitness coaching and more.
There are two issues. One of them is imposter syndrome feeling like you’re not really the expert and that there are others more qualified. The second issue is how to provide value that people are wanting for a reasonable price knowing they will experience the results they are looking for.
People hate to be sold to, but they love to buy. Imagine going to a store and you’re walking around and you’re not really sure what you want. Even though you are a bit directionless, you don’t want someone coming up to you trying to sell to you. So there are two things to do to shift the mindset from “sales” to an “offer.”
1. Start with your people.
Lean into your audience and figure out where they are stuck. What are the tools you can share so you aren’t selling but are offering instead? You’re not selling access to the Bible. They already have that, but what you’re doing is helping your people with the speed of implementation. You’re selling a tool or a resource or a methodology that can help them implement what’s already available. Treat the faith content as a public domain that’s already available. People can go watch it somewhere else. People can go read it somewhere else. But you can break down the information for your people with your system. Remember: you’re not selling Jesus, you’re selling a system.
You have to make a mindset shift. People can get the Bible anywhere, but what they can’t get is your system, and you need to receive revenue to financially care for your family while you create systems for a living that also bring people closer to Christ.
2. Success leaves clues.
Start looking at models of other people who have sold spiritual encouragement. Look at people who have had success in that space. There are already people who are making a full-time living teaching people how to study the Bible and they’re doing it in an ethical and moral way. Study their business model. Go to their website, subscribe to their email list and look at their different income streams. From one message, there’s about 14 income streams. There are all kinds of different ways to take a message and package it up into an audiobook or a kindle book and an ebook of even a physical book. You could do an online course, membership site, paid speech, paid Webinar, consulting, coaching, and more!