We’ve all heard of an entrepreneur. An individual who is considered an entrepreneur is one who has taken on the task of launching a new product, service, and/or business based upon a concept developed by that person. As the number of small businesses explodes in the 21st century, the term entrepreneur has become part of our common language. How many of you have heard of an infopreneur?
As we speak with other SEOs, webmasters, and affiliate marketers, we have found that few people are familiar with the term infopreneur. What does it mean and what does an individual in this field do?
Defining the Term “Infopreneur”
The term “infopreneur” is a combination of information entrepreneur. Business Dictionary defines an infopreneur as a “business person who collects information from several sources and combines it into novel ways to serve the readers’ needs.” The term is actually a registered trademark that belongs to author H. Skip Weitzen, whose book “Infopreneur” introduced the world to the term. Weitzen himself defines the term as “a person who gathers, organizes, and disseminates information as a business venture as a valued-added service.”
What Does it Really Mean?
Just as an entrepreneur is an individual professional who takes a product or service and monetizes it to create a source of income, an infopreneur is an individual who monetizes information on the Internet for the purpose of generating personal income. With this definition in mind, what are the basic duties or responsibilities of an individual who wants to monetize information?
First and foremost, you need to be able to add value through words. Conducting just one Google search will show you that the Internet contains a seemingly endless flow of data. However, raw data has no value on its own. The information gathered and thoughts formed based upon that data offers value. Words take confusing and sometimes ambiguous numbers and transform them into understandable information that people are willing to pay for.
Additionally, you can often get paid multiple times for doing one job. Just as an author writes a book one time and receives royalties over the course of months or years as millions of copies are sold, so too can an infopreneur generate residual income. The idea is to disseminate data into content that is digestible by readers willing to pay for quality information based upon solid facts.
Identifying Marketable Information
Starting a successful business as an infopreneur requires the ability to identify information that is marketable. It is one thing to take raw data and turn it into valuable information for consumer use, but it is another thing to turn data into information people are actually looking for. The information you create needs to offer a solution to a problem for your audience. Additionally, it has to be presented in a manner that people find valuable enough to pay for it.
As you look at the data and try to create a crystal-clear image of the target market that would be interested, you need to consider the following factors:
- Age group
- Social status (college-age or established professionals)
- Line of work
- Family background
- Locality (only if you plan to pinpoint a specific geographic area)
- Potential problems, dreams, or goals
The better you are at narrowing down your market, the greater your potential for profit becomes. If the best content you can create is broad and provides little in the way of deep insight, start over and narrow your target down more. Broad information won’t appeal to people in a manner that makes them want to pay for it.
Selecting a Topic
Next, you cannot simply work with whatever data you feel like. The more familiar you are with the data you’re working with and the industry it applies to, the better equipped you are to generate valuable information based upon data. The more valuable your information is, the more likely it is that people will pay for it.
When you’re looking at data sets in applicable fields, keep your work experience, favorite hobbies, and employment background experience. Regardless of your background experience within a certain field, you’ll need to be able to study that field further and master the subject. It’s also critical to keep yourself up to date and take action to apply what you learn to your information sets. Also, keep the following points in mind:
- Don’t underestimate your knowledge
- People seek out answers from those who have overcome a similar struggle
- Create a product for your target audience, not yourself
- Structure information so it is easy to understand
- Give you work a personal feeling. Speak from a position of experience
- Use your studies and knowledge to fill in the gaps in the data for people
- Empower your readers to take action
- If you don’t know it, don’t write it. Fake content is easy to spot and damages your credibility
Turning Knowledge and Data into Information Products
There is not a common form that your content must take in order to be successful as an infopreneur. If you put together all of your information in the same format, every time, readers are going to lose interest. Generating content should always be dependent upon the type of data you are processing and the audience you aim to attract with that information.
Information can be generated in formats ranging from webinars and blog posts to e-books, audio CDs and online instructional videos. How do you monetize these forms of information? Again, the answer depends upon the type of information. Consider these examples:
- If you develop an e-book, you can upload it as a PDF and allow people to purchase the book. E-books are a flexible format because readers can download them on desktop computers, Kindles, iPads, Samsung Galaxy Tabs, and a variety of other mobile devices.
- Webinars: Presenting information on a website in the form of a webinar allows you to charge people a monthly subscriber fee to access the content.
Infopreneurs use data, personal knowledge, and creativity to generate information that is easily consumed by readers. All it takes is a little insight into your target audience, and you can quickly turn raw data into valuable information.