What Is an IFO and Why Do You Need One at all?
An IFO is your calling card in the digital world. It is your brochure, landing page, and opt-in all wrapped in a juicy offer that says “I am here for YOU” to your potential customers.
A good IFO will build trust, show your potential customers that you have something valuable to offer, and helps them with something they are already trying to solve.
A good IFO can create a bridge to your offer, and will be the first domino in your “pipeline or funnel”.
What an IFO Will Provide
A powerful IFO can start your “new potential customer” relationship off on the right foot! Imagine you recently decided to try a “plant-based” way of eating for a year (or a week, or forever) and you are just getting started. You google, “plant-based recipes” and you get a boat-load of options – all looking about the same – amazing folks with amazing recipes…. One of them says, “3 Steps to Getting Started as a Vegan for Busy Professionals” and you click on it FIRST! Why? Because it will answer some questions that you may not even know to ask. Because you have not a clue as to what you are really looking for, so “education” is more valuable than “here is a good recipe”!
Education is More Valuable Than “Right Answers”
When we take the time to answer someone’s real questions, about their real struggles “right now” and do not withhold anything, or make it harder to get, it builds enormous trust with your “potential new customer”. When they get that free download of all the “9 mistakes they might make”, or the “50 ingredients that are really Gluten” by a Health Coach, or “How to Find Office Space in Your Home Without Adding On” for an Interior Designer.
Why Does It Have to Be Free?
It does not “have to be” free! For some industries, FREE is actually a deterrent to folks opting in. So if you are in one of those industries – then charge a nominal amount, or a standard that is appropriate for your industry, but have it be so easy a choice that there will be no hesitation.
The FREE only reduces the barrier to opt-in – this is something you can test by putting your IFO out 2 or 3 ways in different markets.
Your IFO is the Start of Your Pipeline/Funnel
Each time you put new content on the internet, free or not, you are building your pipeline. When you first started your blog, you started a Landing Page in an Email Server (Mailchimp, aWeber, Constant Contact) and put an “opt-in box” on it. That is the official “launch” of your pipeline. The most effective next piece is your IFO.
What Can I Use as an IFO?
- You can use your Ideal Customer’s biggest problem – and create a one-sheet that gives them the basics to their problem/area of concern/answers to their questions.
- You can answer FAQ in an IFO
- You can create an infographic for something you teach and acts as a handout at the end of your programs/services/goes with your products.
- You can put together a short (think 20-30 pages) e-book about their problem that builds a bridge to your solution (think having a 30-60 minute conversation with a potential customer, What would you tell them?)
- You can create a game –
- You can invite them to talk to you directly for “free”
- You can invite them to a Free event
- You can offer them free access for 7 days
- You can gather experts and produce a “free event” that you invite folks to.
- and the newest trend — you can create a Challenge!
The options are NOT endless, but the list is long and full of viable choices.
Your IFO is a Springboard to Future Offers
Your IFO may be Free now, but can also be expanded to become a program, a book, or a podcast. You can leverage your content to build more collateral that deepens your offers and scope of work!
FOR MORE READING ON – “Growing Your Business or Growing Your List” read: Uncovering Your Subtle Self Sabotage and How to Intervene
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I started my first Creative Business when I was a single mom with four tiny children. That was 25 years ago and I started Business 101 for Creative Entrepreneurs to give back. I am so grateful for all the support did get while I was getting started, but more than anything I wished I had some business support, some mentoring or guidance. I want you to know that I get how hard, confusing, and challenging it can be to be alone and have real questions with no one to ask.
Please accept this FREE 30 Minute Creative Business Consult as my way of saying “You Can Do It!” Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t!!
What You Can Use Your Call to Accomplish:
- Ask anything you need to know!
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- You can design a Next Actions plan for building the life of your dreams!
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