Excerpts from the ebook "How to Create Professional Hypnosis & Meditation Recordings" by Christopher Lloyd Clarke.
Is it worth your time to create a recording? Is this a project worth undertaking? Will you get a good return on investment? At this early stage these are probably the single most important questions we can address.
The short answer to these questions is “yes, yes and yes”.
There are plenty of compelling reasons to create a recording and just as many reasons why now is the best time in history to do so. So let’s dive in and explore them all.
1. Demand is strong.
We live in a world that is increasingly “media rich” and hungry for new content. Our modern culture is one that respects and appreciates people who create and contribute to our lives through the various forms of digital communication that are now available to us: YouTube videos, online articles, mp3 downloads, tv shows, podcasts and e-books being some of the most commonplace.
So when the time comes for you to release your recording, whether as a CD or as a digital download, you can expect there to be a demand for it.
This demand is not only driven by the cultural inclinations of our digital age. To some degree, this demand is driven by the fact that many people prefer to tackle their personal problems in the privacy of their own home, rather than travelling to see a counsellor or therapist in person. Whether restricted by their geographical location, financial limitations or perhaps even shyness, a certain percentage of the population would rather buy your CD than see you in person.
While I don’t have the statistics to prove it, I suspect that the demand for meditation and hypnosis recordings has also been increasing steadily over the years in unison with increases in psychological health problems such as anxiety and depression. Fortunately, in most western countries, social awareness and acceptance of these sorts of conditions has improved over time, and as a result, more and more people are encouraged to take active steps to address their psychological health.
As you can see, there are quite a few factors driving demand for self-help recordings, now more so than ever before.
2. Technology – the great (and cheap) enabler.
Today’s computers are both cheap and powerful and they enable you to create media productions (whether they be audio productions, videos or ebooks) with relative ease. I’m also happy to report that when it comes to audio recordings, a computer with even the most modest specifications will suffice.
These are some of the reasons why recording studios all over the world are going out of business. Bands are now much less reliant on recording studios to provide them with the facilities, computing power and equipment they need to record themselves. As a solo artist, you’ll need even less equipment and less computing power than a band, so should you choose to do your own recording (rather than going to a recording studio), then the computer you are using right now is almost certainly good enough to take care of all your recording needs, provided it is less than 10 years old.
3. The internet – giving you access to an entire planet of potential customers.
It’s almost so obvious that it’s not worth mentioning, but the fact is that the internet effectively reduces the gap between yourself and a billion potential customers to zero. Over the last 10 years, e-commerce has exploded. It’s never been cheaper or easier to distribute your work to the world.
4. Recordings are relatively easy and efficient to create.
Audio productions that consist of a spoken word performance mixed with a musical backing track usually take MUCH less time to create than other types of media productions, such as videos and e-books (don’t I know it!).
For example, to create a 30 minute guided meditation recording that can be sold for around $10 (£6 / €7), you will probably need to write a script that is no more than two pages long. An e-book that sells for the same price might contain 50+ pages of content. Which do you think takes more effort to produce?
Once you come to grips with the process of creating spoken word recordings, you’ll realize that they can be produced very efficiently indeed. In fact, it’s possible to put together an entire range of recorded products in a relatively short time frame. Writing scripts and recording your voice are tasks that you can take care of in your spare time, so you won’t have to put your life on hold to complete these projects.
“Return on investment” is the key concept here. You will probably find that the modest amount of time and money you will invest in creating your recordings will yield a very healthy, long term financial return that far outweighs the initial costs. With that in mind, let’s go on to explore the financial rewards and other benefits you can expect your recordings to generate.
5. Passive, ongoing income.
While audio productions might take a little bit of time and money to create from scratch, once they are finished they become an asset that will continue to reward you for years, perhaps even decades into the future.
Take a moment to really stop and think about the implications of this, and let the word “asset” crystallise in your mind. Your recordings might not seem as tangible an asset as something like a car or a piece of land or an investment property, but assets they most certainly are. Your recordings are your intellectual property and they have a very real value that can be measured just like any other asset.
In some ways, recordings are the best kind of asset of all. Unlike cars, they never depreciate and they require no maintenance. And unlike a piece of land, you can keep selling the same item over and over. In fact, if you sell your recording as a digital download (something I highly recommend – we will get into this subject in much more detail later on in this book) then you don’t even need to maintain any stock. Forget about CDs. Forget about posting anything to your customers in the mail. Put your feet up and let the internet handle everything for you. Your online store can be open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, accepting payments from your customers and delivering downloads to them automatically. You can be fast asleep while all this is happening.
Further content, including an in-depth case study in earnings are available in the ebook "How to Create Professional Hypnosis & Meditation Recordings".
6. Unexpected opportunities and publicity
Your recordings can take you places that you may not expect and they can open doors that might otherwise remain closed to you. Here are just three real world examples:
1. Linda is a life coach. She offered one of her guided meditations for free on her website. This particular meditation made its way into the hands of a radio station host who then invited Linda to a live interview to discuss the benefits of meditation. This exposed her services and her recording to a very large audience of people.
2. Derek is a hypnotherapist who created a range of more than 20 hypnosis recordings over a two year period. A large media production company came across his work online and offered to pay Derek to write hypnosis scripts for them.
3. Jocelyne is a stress management consultant who often uses guided imagery in her meditations. She was contacted by a domestic airline that wanted to make her recordings a part of their in-flight entertainment menu. She licensed her recordings to the airline in exchange for an ongoing fee, and now millions of people (mostly anxious passengers) enjoy her relaxing journeys on their headphones while flying. Jocelyne has no ongoing responsibility to the airline whatsoever. She just gets a cheque in the mail four times a year.
It’s worth mentioning that, more often than not, it is the internet that paves the way for these kinds of unexpected opportunities. The internet will take you to every corner of the globe, to billions of people and it will do so in an interactive way that allows people to see and hear your work from the comfort of their own home or office.
Good reasons to have a website of your own don’t you think? This is something to contemplate if you don’t already have one up and running.
7. Greater credibility and status as a professional in your field
It should come as no surprise to you that professionals who are published, whether in print, audio or video format, instantly gain additional credibility and status as an expert in their field. Our media hungry world is increasingly appreciative of, nay, expecting of media productions. They are the mark of a professional and they garner both loyalty and respect.
8. Improved client services
Much of what we have talked about in this chapter so far has been focussed on “what’s in it for YOU”. What are you going to gain from creating recordings? How much money will you make? How much will your professional status be elevated and how many new opportunities will open up for you?
But we should stop for a moment (a big moment) to consider the positive effect that your recordings are going to have on others and how you might use your recordings to improve the services you offer to your clients. Let me give you one example of how this can happen.
Some therapists provide each of their clients with a CD recording as part of their overall patient care package. Some include the CD in the price of their patient’s first consultation, others make it an optional extra that the patient can choose to buy. Your recording might be one to help alleviate depression or anxiety. It might be a general relaxation exercise, or perhaps a hypnosis recording to help people with sleep disorders. Whatever the case, audio recordings can be an extremely beneficial adjunct to your clients’ treatment.
The beauty of recordings such as these is that they extend the contact between you and your client long after they leave your presence. This can really help to keep your clients motivated and will help them to establish new behaviours and thought patterns even in your absence. And because your recording includes your voice, the patient benefits from a much more personal and memorable experience each time they listen to your recording than if they had purchased a generic store-bought CD that was created by someone whom they never met.
OK, we’ve talked quite a bit about why you should create an audio recording and what you and your customers stand to gain by doing so. Now it’s time to take our first step into the how. All recordings begin life as a written script, so that’s exactly where we’ll start…
The following chapter is available in the ebook "How to Create Professional Hypnosis & Meditation Recordings".