You’re ready to create your very first course, but not quite sure on how to get started with all the tech that’s out there. Where do you host it? How do you create it? How do you put it together? If those are your questions then you’re going to want to stick around. Today, I’m going to be sharing with you exactly how to create your first online course.
Deciding to build a course can be daunting, but when done the right way it’s an extremely profitable and practical addition to your coaching business. In this post on how to create your first online course, I have four simple steps to make sure that your endeavors are successful.
Step one is to make sure it will sell.
A lot of people get started, create a course, go through the entire process, do all of the work, and then launch their course. Only to realize that no one’s buying. I want to make sure that you don’t fall into that same trap. The way that I make sure that every one of my courses will sell before I actually create it, is to do what I call pre-selling.
Pre-Selling involves asking people if they actually want and need the course that you’re creating. This allows you to conduct the co-creation process with them. Usually, I do this with a survey or asking what they’d like to learn. Then I open the cart and start making sales before actually creating the course.
Step two is – get lots of attention.
When I say get lots of attention, I’m typically referring to what I call a content blitz. A content blitz is where you’re talking about nothing else but your specific topic. To accomplish this, you need to be talking about nothing else for a concentrated period of time.
A content blitz lasts anywhere from seven to 14 days of hammering this speicifc topic. I’m talking about it on Instagram, on Youtube, on Facebook, all of my social media platforms, also via email. It’s consuming everything on my platforms to get my audience warmed up and start associating me with the topic.
For example, I recently launched a YouTube Strategies Masterclass where I talk a lot more about my YouTube process.
How I create content to help me sell my course, how I get more subscribers, and how I get email subscribers as well as YouTube subscribers.
When I first started creating this course and this masterclass, the first thing that I did was pre-sold. I did that research and made sales before I even went live on day one to create the content. Then the second thing that I did was step two, which is getting lots of attention. During this time, inside of my Facebook group the only thing that I was doing was talking about YouTube.
I asked questions about what type of YouTube channels you subscribe to. When was the last time you clicked on an ad? What’s stopping you from getting started with YouTube? Everything was YouTube, YouTube, YouTube.
This helped me grab the attention of my audience and they started to expect that I would be teaching on that topic because I was hammering it so much. Then naturally, when it came time to buy, they were ready and I knew exactly how to serve them on this topic because I had been asking questions for weeks.
Step three on how to create your first online course is tech testing and ads.
Now, this is a really large step and it’s one of those steps that it’s unavoidable. You’ve got to make sure that you’ve got each of these pieces together. First thing is that you need to make sure that you have a cart where people can make a purchase. I like using a cart software called ThriveCart (partner link). This platform allows you to take payments via credit or debit card, Paypal, Google Pay, Apple Pay, etc. They also have affiliate commission programs so you can have other people in the industry help sell your course with you.
They also allow you to set a minimum or maximum number of spots for some of your courses. For example, when I sold the YouTube Strategies Masterclass, I had a maximum of 10 people that could get in at the lowest rate. Then once those 10 were gone, then the next rate came into effect. You want to make sure that people have a reason to jump in right away, especially for your first course.
You want to set some sort of urgency or scarcity.
Now that you have a cart software, you need to have a landing page or landing page software. If you’re just getting started, I recommend that you use ClickFunnels (partner link), but you can also build landing pages on WordPress. I like using Thrive Themes (partner link) to build my landing pages on WordPress. Or you can skip all of that and have only the cart software as your landing page.
Next, you need software to deliver the content. You can make it a simple email course, but email is easily forwarded from one person to the next. To protect your content you want to lock it behind a gateway or a member area. The member area that I like and the one that I use is called Thinkific (partner link). I wrote an article on how to create an online course using Thinkific. Be sure to check it out. They have a free plan and a low-cost plan so you can get started right now.
* NOTE: You want to make sure all of these pieces actually work. The last thing you want is to capture a lead and have them bail because your tech didn’t work. Go through the entire process acting as a potential client and make sure the user experience is easy and efficient.
The last part of how to create your first online course is to utilize ads. This is where many get discouraged because they start comparing their success to others online. Someone might say, “I made 70,000” or “I made six figures with a course launch”, or “I’ve made $1 million with my courses”. The thing is, they’re not telling you the whole story (or cost).
For example, recently I sold over $7,000 worth of courses, but that wasn’t all profit. Between the expense of my softwares, fees, and ads, I had about $2,800 worth of costs on my end. That doesn’t include what I need to put to the side for taxes.
Just keep in mind that most people online are bragging about what is coming through the business, not what they’re really taking home at the end of the day. When you’re first starting out the only thing you should focus on is just getting that one sale.
Now we can move into step four which is emails and launching.
Your email list and emails are super, super important and you’ve got to have a great email service provider. The email service provider that I use and recommend is called ConvertKit. (partner link)
ConvertKit handles all of my broadcast emails and nurture sequences. Whenever someone makes a purchase, I can tag them inside of my account and lists. That way. If I ever need to email to tell people, “Hey, there’s a flash sale”, or “There’s a promotion going on”, I can exclude the people who have already purchased. This makes it that much easier to segment your lists and only speak to the people who you want to specifically talk to.
Once that’s settled, it’s just time to launch.
Once you’re ready to launch your course, you already have people who said that they’re interested. You have your cart software set up, turn it on and open the doors. As your customers come in, you set a date to start recording your content, to start putting your course together. Those people come in LIVE and they get the exclusive chance to “live launch” with you. Then close the doors off and then focus on your clients inside of the course to ensure their reuslts. Once you’re done with that, it’s time to automate and sell the course over and over again in the future.
There you have it! My four steps on how to create your first online course!