Updated: 4 days ago
This week I thought we’d continue the conversation about leveraging your expertise to make money as a dietitian creating and selling digital and physical products.
In this post we’re going to dive a little deeper into the vast ocean of what you can potentially sell that would enhance your business or accompany it well.
Chances are, if you’re reading this, you already have a “why” you’d like to create and sell something, but maybe you’re still in the “what exactly would I create and sell?” phase.
If you aren’t 100% sure what you should do, but love the idea of using your nutrition expertise in a different and creative way to gain more professional satisfaction outside of your day job, while also making some side income as an RD, this post will give you some ideas to get the creative juices flowing!
What to sell, what to sell…
Think physical, think digital, think experiential, think BIG and go for it!
Below are just a few ideas for products you could start selling as a dietitian.
As you read through this list, start to think about what topic(s) you are passionate enough about to be able to talk about it for hours.
Niche nutrition courses
Entrepreneurial and business courses
Performing Arts, Films, Movies, Videos, and Podcasts
Start a YouTube channel
Live stream on YouTube, Twitch, etc.
Produce a film and sell it via streaming services
Create an exclusive subscriber-based podcast or video content
Interactive exhibit or show
Prints of your original works
Hold a pop-up shop
Prints of your work
Digital downloads of your work
Electron Microscopy for science books
Design your own clothing item or line
Mugs and bottles
Badge reels and lanyards
Stickers and decals
Devices and Inventions
Custom printed/painted assistive devices
Design a new product and bring it to market!
Do Some Brainstorming and Research
Make a list of all your ideas, no matter how big or small. What do you want to create? Who do you want to sell it to? Fellow dietitians? Clients? Foodies? Hospitals? Potato farmers?
What’s your niche and who’s your target audience?
Do you want to crack out your old potters wheel and make handmade mugs with curse words in cutesy writing to sell on Etsy and connect with your salty, rebellious audience?
Do you want to create paintings of brains and sell them to medical professionals to put up in their offices?
Do you want to turn your punny nutrition doodles into t-shirt designs?
Do you want to design nutrition-themed textile patterns to have printed on fabric and sell it to nerdy, science-loving sewers?
Do you want to create custom stress coins to give to your anxious clients to fidget with when they need to remind themselves of your work together?
Do you want to create beautifully designed nutrition handouts for dietitians to give to their clients?
Do you want to help dietetic interns prepare for their rotation with you so you want to film scenes demonstrating scenarios they may find themselves in and how to handle them?
Below are just a few examples of Dietitians currently creating and selling their unique ideas in their respective niches.
Photography and Prints
RD Apparel, Stickers, and Art
Touring Music-Based Nutrition Education Program
Intuitive Eating Guide
Senior Health and Cookbooks
Membership Site with Courses for RDs
RD Apparel and Accessories
Nutrition Posters and RD Accessories
Digital Products Marketplace for Dietitians by Dietitians
Know of others? Drop a link below to their sites in the comments section and let’s show them some love!
What SHOULD dietitians sell?
I want to touch a little bit on the what SHOULD you sell aspect a bit.
As you can see from the list above, there are so many things! And I’m sure you, being the creative beast that you are, already have some ideas of what you’d like to create and sell, who you’d sell to, and why you want to.
I can hear the gears turning and see the steam billowing from here!
You might even have ideas that have been collecting dust in your brain for far too long.
Do any of these resonate with you?
“It would be nice to write a book
about adolescent nutrition some day…”
“I have so many dietitian-themed t-shirt ideas,
I should learn how to sketch them out in Procreate sometime…”
“Man, I really want to get back into art.
I wonder if I could sell my fruit paintings…”
“I keep repeating myself to my clients.
I really need to turn all this into a nutrition course…”
"I need to make time to do more photography.
I'd really like to create a body of work focussed on body positivity..."
“We really need better lab coats.
I should find a pattern maker to design something nicer…”
“I’d love to illustrate children’s books about nutrition…”
“I miss theatre and I have so many funny interactions with patients.
I should film my friend and I acting them out…”
So... what should you sell?
Follow Your Passions
There are so many options and it really depends on your target market, what you know they need or want and what YOU want to create and sell.
I need to pause and repeat that; what YOU want to create.
This may seem silly to say, but I, for many years, created what other people wanted me to create.
Sure it made me some money, but was I happy? Not really.
I lost enthusiasm and I got burnt out because I was only catering to the needs and wants of others and primarily listening to what the people around me thought I should be creating.
If you don’t have a passion and interest in what you’re selling, it will show through, so choose something you’ll love showing up to work on every single day.
It should be about the passion for what you’re creating first. People want to support people driven by passion. Put in the work, share your story and why you do what you do, and the sales will come.
Some things will be more challenging to monetize than others, but it’s all possible.
Clearly there are lots of options out there and it can potentially be overwhelming to choose just one.
For myself, if I stare at a blank canvas without a clear intent, I’m stifled by the possibilities. I just don’t know where to start.
Take your time brainstorming and researching and I encourage you to start with one thing. Trying to do it all can lead to burnout and not making actual progress.
Slow and steady.
Life’s too short not to make the shit you’re meant to.
Ready to join a support community of fellow creators?
Join us in our Facebook group, Artists and Creators in Dietetics.
Feel like you can’t do it all on your own and need the help of a designer? Let’s collaborate! Contact me at email@example.com
About the Author
Sara is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian, artist, writer, and video editor. She holds a Bachelor's of Science degree in Nutrition from Oregon State University. In 2021 she founded The Kerrminator LLC, which specializes in creative services for Dietitians including video editing, graphic design, and content creation.
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