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It’s all in the packaging….almost

When I talk to my students about putting together their portfolios, I talk of course about including an appropriate functional (rather than chronological) resume, testimonials, business cards, and work samples. All assembled in a spiffy looking folder of some sort. I regret to say that almost as important as the quality of the words you cobble together – is how good they look as a package. It sounds absurd I know. But as in most things in life – first impressions count.Putting together a good looking portfolio is a bit of an art form itself, and perhaps worthy of commentary another day.

But lest you think I am exaggerating on this matter – let me tell you a little story that is illustrative.

Last year I attended a workshop given by a very well known Internet marketer of information products. He talked about all the material he gave away for free and noted of course how much is given away these days on the internet.

So how did he decide what he gave away for free and what he sold? It didn’t seem to matter that much.

In the electronic universe it’s all basically electrons anyway. But wrap those electrons up with an offer of extra free stuff, add an audio file or two, perhaps a hard copy CD along with some very good copy about the value on the whole bundle and there you have it – a package with a price tag. Perceived value is everything.

Don’t get me wrong – the content has to be very good too. He produces great content and of course, if he didn’t, all the pretty packaging in the world wouldn’t help him very long. But the first sell definitely comes – in part – from the packaging. You best give that some thought as you consider how you are marketing yourself.