The internet has accelerated our society towards a knowledge economy, and the thirst for learning has fueled the rise of educational entrepreneurs or ‘edupreneurs’. If you are an expert in your field, people will seek out your knowledge and spend time engaging with your content.
And if you want to leverage your expertise and monetise your knowledge, it can be invaluable to learn from those who are experts in the world of course creation.
In this episode of The Course Creators Circle Podcast, we are joined by Alethea Tuitahi and Aaron Morin, who are both course creation experts. They share with us their top course creation tips and insights to help us on our own course creation journey.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
What is the number one course creation tip that you would share with anyone in the course creation journey? Why is this so important for our people to understand and know? And why do you think this is a must-do when creating courses?
Alethea: My number one tip is to build your audience and get visible. The whole build it and they will come analogy does not work. If you don’t have an audience to sell your course to, your course launch will fail.
You can start by building a waitlist for your course by setting up a simple landing page and getting people to opt-in. Continue to build your email list with lead magnets, run ads and build your social following. The larger the better.
Marketing is a numbers game. If you base it on the industry average that 2% of people will buy from your sales page, the more people you can get to your sales page, the better your course launch and sales will be.
Aaron: I’ve had the privilege of educating thousands of people on online courses, building courses, and selling them. A lot of the tips that I tell people amount to one word, and that’s validate.
Whether you are a large company, a small company, or a first-time creator, what you want to do is validate everything as you go. Start slow and build up over time.
The best and safest way to go forward is to test everything. You want to test the product and market fit for your topic. You want to validate that there are even people out there that will buy this topic.
You also want to test your content and validate that your content works for your audience. You want to talk to them. Running a beta test with a small cohort of people that can give you feedback is incredibly important. Everything boils down to one word and that’s validate.
Now we’re looking for your second top tip. This might be another must-do or it could be just something that you think accelerates course growth or course sales or getting that knowledge out of your head so that we can empower course creators to build on these amazing tips you all have.
Alethea: My next tip is to use email marketing to enhance your student experience. The first place to start is by ensuring you have a welcome email set up to go out to your students. In this email, including how to access the course, what’s included with their course purchase, how to access any communities you may have, and the best way to get the most out of the course.
This way, your students know from the beginning exactly what they need to do. Then you can follow this up with an onboarding sequence of emails set up in your email marketing platform to continually help your students along.
If you create a course that students love and have a wonderful experience, they will then become raving fans and will do your marketing for you.
Aaron: Beyond all the practical tips that I could give you, I want to give you a tip about what happens to pretty much every course creator that I’ve ever talked to. And it is called imposter syndrome.
One of the biggest tips that I give people, especially the solopreneurs or the people out there with small teams, is to not only connect with other people in your space so that you can share how you’re feeling about this process and come to the realization that you’re not the only one feeling this way.
Believe in yourself. Understand that you have what it takes to build something that’s going to help people out there. That information being stuck in your head, getting perfected over time, and never being released isn’t helping anyone. We’re in this to help other people and create transformations.
Talking to other people will help you realize that everyone feels this way and everyone’s just winging it for the most part until they actually hit some kind of traction and have somewhat of an inkling of an idea of what they’re doing. It takes a lot of boldness and a lot of confidence to get there, so build that up into yourself as soon as possible.
What is the final tip that you think course creators should know? Maybe it’s a bonus, a must-have, or an out-of-the-box idea. What is the third tip that you want to share with our course creators?
Alethea: Plan your course curriculum by thinking about the transformation that your student will have by taking your online course. The easiest way to do this is by working backwards.
You start with the end result in mind—the transformation that your students will receive. Then you think about the main steps they need to take to get to that result. Those steps can become the modules in your course. You can fill in each module with the lessons needed to get the results they need for that particular step.
You end up with a big list of modules and lessons. It also makes it easy to see what type of lessons you’ve got in there so that you can make sure you’ve got the different learning styles covered.
Aaron: The biggest tip that I could give a course creator is to understand that your online course is the start of something or it is a part of something bigger than just the course. What you want to do is you want to look at the relationship that you’re building with your audience and understand how it evolves over time.
You want to investigate concepts like the value ladder, upsells, cross-sells, and down sells. This isn’t a one-and-done thing. You want to grab people’s attention. You want to build trust with them over time. Then you want to get them into a low-cost item, like an ebook or a template, something along those lines, and build up from there.
You want to get them all the way up to the point where you are doing one on one coaching with them, potentially, or running a mastermind or a community, which is something more exclusive.
You need to understand that online courses are part of an entire ecosystem. You need to build your list. There is a ladder that you need to build for people to climb, to help you grow your business, and to help you reach more people with your transformational education.
About our Guests
Alethea is a tech-loving online course creator, a website designer, and a lover of chai lattes who’s been building in the online space for 7+ years. Tackling all those techy headaches for her clients, Alethea takes your content and turns it into a beautiful, student-focused online course ready for you to launch into the world! If you’re a coach, consultant or service provider monetise your knowledge and amplify your impact online with the help of her boutique online course agency at CloudXS Digital.
Aaron is currently working to enable creators to sell their expertise online via learning products and communities. He is the Senior Manager responsible for the Education & Community teams at Thinkific.
[0:00] Welcome to The Course Creators Circle Podcast
[0:38] Three top tips from course creation experts
[1:18] Introducing Alethea Tuitahi
[1:41] Introducing Aaron Morin
[2:05] First course creation tip
[2:21] Alethea: Build your audience
[3:15] Aaron: Validate
[4:12] Second course creation tip
[4:30] Alethea: Use email marketing to enhance the student experience
[5:20] Aaron: Connect with other people in your space
[7:13] Final course creation tip
[7:31] Alethea: Plan your curriculum with transformation in mind
[8:34] Aaron: Your online course is the start of something
[10:13] Thank you to our guests Alethea and Aaron
[10:31] Please subscribe to The Course Creators Circle Podcast
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