Guest Post by Therese Palmere
Living in the digital age is a blessing.
We all know it, Neil Patel knows it (that’s why he is in the image above).
Neil Patel made a killing when the internet first came out. why? Because all the information you could possibly need is just a few clicks away. If you don’t want to look up the information yourself, you can always take an online course!
Online courses have given users the freedom to choose when they want to learn, what they want to learn, and how they want to learn it.
Creating an online course is a great way to appeal to your audience because it shows users you care about the intricacies of their everyday life. They can choose to interact with your Brand at 6am before their day starts, or at 10pm after the fuss is over.
What will really make them choose your online courses over another business’, though, is its content.
Below are 4 simple strategies to significantly boost your online course sales:
Understanding Your Audience
The same way you would sit down and write out your brand’s digital marketing strategy, is how you should approach creating the content for your online courses.
Think about this as a game of chess. Understanding how the pieces move isn’t enough to win you the game. What gives you a real competitive edge is understanding the game. In this case, you need to understand your audience.
Take the time out to research the specific demographics your brand is targeting. Are they male, female or both? How old are they? Are they high school graduates? Did they go to college? After this, try to answer the following questions to gain a well-rounded understanding of their needs:
- What kind of learners are they – Visual, auditory, or kinesthetic?
- When are they free? What times in the day can your users sit down to take your online course?
- What online courses have they taken and liked? What online courses have they taken and disliked? What did they like and dislike about these courses?
- What kinds of practice questions can you give them that apply to their current lives?
These questions will help your business build a profile for your target audience, and will give your team an understanding of how to structure your online course. Catering to the specific needs of your users will set you apart from other options. Actually familiarize yourself with your users and get on their level! They will be thankful you took the time out to understand what they need, and so will your bottom line.
Castle Your King
Let’s get back to the game, shall we?
In chess, castling is a strategic move a player makes by protecting their king from every angle. Three pawns protect the king from the front and a rook stays at its side. These pieces are all representative of how your team can protect your content and drive more sales for your online course.
1. The First Pawn: Social Media
The first pawn protecting your king is social media. Once you’ve curated content for your online course and have finalized its structure, social media will help generate buzz for its release date. Neil Patel, entrepreneur and co-founder of Crazy Egg, fully believes in the power of using social media to drive sales for your online course. Here is one of my favorite quotes by him:
“Through the implementation of a strong social media strategy, it’s possible to reach your growth goals sooner than you ever thought possible. Tap into those networks and start promoting”.
You want to get your audience excited about your content. Release samples from the course or film a small demonstration on how to navigate through the material. For example, colleges like Liberty University will regularly give students samples on courses they can take throughout the semester. Give them some behind the scenes footage of what the office looked like during the process or give behind the scenes advice on how it all happened, like YouTuber Brandon Lucero. Make your users feel special.
After all, the course is for them!
2. The Second Pawn: Influencers
The second pawn protecting your king is influencer marketing. We all know the power of interpersonal communication – influencers just make it happen on a larger scale! Reach out to thought leaders in your industry and ask them to give their honest reviews of your content.
Influencer marketing delivers 11x ROI compared to that of traditional digital marketing strategies. Having an influencer speak about your course will show that your brand is reliable, credible, and a worthwhile investment. Brands like Simple Skincare regularly collaborate with YouTubers to promote their products, so why not do it for your online course? Show your users other people believe in what you’ve created and that your brand is trustworthy!
3. The Third Pawn: Email Marketing
The last pawn protecting your king is email marketing. You probably already have a loyal following of subscribers and email sign ups. This hub of users is invaluable. Digital entrepreneur and marketing blogger Jeff Bullas notes that email lists are important because
“You own it and can use it to reach prospects and customers at any time.”
Send an update to your people and reward users who have been with you from the very beginning by offering them 15-30% off their purchase! Maybe offer a free trial to show that you appreciate their loyalty.
However, give them a time frame! Show your audience these rewards won’t last forever and that they need to take action now.
Once the launch beings, remind your audience they only have a certain amount of time to purchase your online course before the deal ends. According to MarketingLand,
“One of the most effective urgency-inducers in sales is the takeaway. When you threaten to take an offer away, people are more likely to act in a hurry.”
4. The Rook: The Logistics
The rook represents the straight and narrow. In other words, being honest with your audience.
Your team has curated amazing content, marketed on all the main platforms, and received wonderful reviews from industry leaders. You’re known as a trustworthy brand until a user goes through the course and is unsatisfied with the content. All the hard work your team has put in these past months has just vanished in the blink of an eye.
This can be easily avoided by being honest. Tell you users exactly what they’re getting out of the course. Don’t promise them a Google Analytics certification when you know they won’t be getting one. Sales speaker, Marc Wayshak, says honesty throws prospective clients off guard and makes them more susceptible to your messages. It’s not enough to just seem trustworthy, your brand needs to actually be trustworthy if you want to continue increasing your sales.
Curating your content is just as important as protecting it. Sure, content is king, but no king can survive without an army. You want to properly arm your team with the tools they need to succeed. Following these tips with help your business drive more sales for your online courses. Let’s take a look at them one more time:
- Understanding your audience is just as important as creating relevant and useful content. You want to show your users you did your research and know how to best service them.
- Protect your hard work by utilizing different marketing tactics to show users your new product.
- Use social media to show your audience they are included every step of the way.
- Collaborate with industry leaders to build your street credibility.
- Give your loyal followers rewards and give off a sense of urgency.
- Be honest with what your users will gain from taking your online course.
Now go forth and win the game!
Therese Palmere specializes in social media marketing and is a content writer for Aumcore, a Digital Marketing Agency based in New York City. She covers everything from tips on how to create a content marketing plan to the latest industry topics.