Have you been hesitant to build an online course because you're afraid of putting all the work to create one just to hear crickets?
This is incredibly common and I hear it all the time when helping people build their own online courses.
The truth is that ANYBODY can build an online course and slap together some videos but not everyone can build a course that sells itself over and over again.
I’ve been on both sides of the spectrum.
It took me creating over 6 online courses until I made one that sold without ever meeting the person!
It’s an incredible feeling to get a notification that someone paid you without you doing any extra work or meeting them and it never gets old - I want YOU to experience that.
What will virtually guarantee your online course will sell before you create it are 2 things…
Today, I’m going to show you how to do both of these and give you the frameworks to succeed BEFORE ever creating your first (or next) online course.
You will learn…
Let’s dive in!
Before you start building a course, we want to do some research.
Specifically, we're trying to find the biggest problems our "perfect buyers" are facing so we can solve them in the form of an online course. To best do this, we want to create an easily accessible Customer Research Document using a tool like Google Docs.
Break your document into these 3 categories:
Here's an example...
Put any and all interesting information you find into the designated category.
Eventually, you will have a huge database of information from your target audience that you can use for content ideas, copywriting, and creating online courses.
Here are some ideas to fill up your document:
Bestselling books - Look up the top 5-10 bestsellers on your course idea topic then search them on Amazon.com. Sort by "most reviewed" and pull interesting points from the reviews. Focus on the 3 and 4-star reviews as they will be less biased.
Udemy.com - Udemy is a website that sells online courses on every topic you can imagine. If people are already buying courses around your topic idea, that's a good sign! Search your course topic idea, sort by "most reviewed", and copy & paste any interesting points into your document categories.
YouTube Comments - YouTube is filled with great insights, unanswered questions, and transparent comments. Use them. Search for videos as if you were your target market. What do they want to know related to your course idea? Dig through videos with comments that have more conversations going on inside. It may take some time, but you can find some great insights here.
Online Forums - Every day, people are asking questions online and forums are a great resource for customer research. Simply type into Google [keyword] + forum and you will have a list of forums to choose from.
In-Person Conversations - Strike up some conversations with people both on and offline that fit your target market for your online course. Use your customer research template as a guide for the conversation and create a place for people to open up with you. You're not selling anything here, just getting some data. Put any and all interesting insights in your document.
Courses can take a long time to create and a great practice before ever creating your online course is to create a course outline first.
Creating an online course outline allows us to easily make changes to our course before ever shooting any of the content.
First, we want to come up with a compelling course name. Something short, catchy, and that speaks to the #1 transformation people can expect from the course.
Here are a couple of examples:
Next, write a brief description of your course.
Write a short paragraph that answers these questions:
Then, consider the price range you want to sell your course for.
Pro Tip: Create 2-3 tiers (or versions) of your course. Each tier comes with added bonuses so people think "which one should I buy?" rather than "should I buy this?"
Now, we want to come up with some intriguing names for your course content.
Focus on creating benefit-driven, eye-catching titles that speak to your prospect's pains, dreams, and objections.
For example, if you created a fitness course, you could call one of the lessons "Sustainable Fitness: Choosing The Right Exercises For Your Body Type".
Lastly, we want to answer a few questions so we can see the value in this product we're building for people.
Take some time to answer these questions:
What will people GAIN after buying and using this product?
What will people LOSE if they DON’T buy and use this product?
What makes this course legit? Why does this course work?
What makes this product unique from other options?
I hope you can see that building a course isn't just about throwing together some videos in some fancy software, wiping your hands, and calling it a day.
When you do the work before the work, you will be rewarded time and time again because you took the time to create something people cared about and that solves real problems.
When you build your first (or next) online course, start with some thorough customer research, create a solid outline, then get some feedback from people about how intriguing it is. - you just might get some early buyers.
Take what you learned here, get out there, and build your course!
I'll see you in the next one.
Download this 5-step action plan PDF to create an automated system that sells your knowledge, passions, and skills online 24/7.