As businesses and corporations look for ways to diversify their income streams, many have turned to online courses as a reliable source of revenue. But how do you market your online course and make sure it is successful? Developing an effective online course marketing strategy can be a daunting task, but it is essential if you want your courses to reach their full potential.
Here are three steps you should take in order to succeed with online course marketing
Marketing an online course can seem intimidating at first but with some strategic planning, it can be relatively easy and incredibly rewarding.
That means, our first step to success, has to focus on strategy!
Set Clear Goals
Before you even begin creating content and crafting your message, it’s important that you set clear goals for your course. What do you hope to accomplish? How many students do you want to enroll in the course? What type of revenue do you expect to generate from the course? Answering these questions will help ensure that your strategy is focused and effective.
Know Your Audience
Who are the people who will most likely sign up for your course? Are they newbie entrepreneurs looking for business advice? Are they seasoned professionals looking for more advanced skills training? Knowing who your target audience is will help ensure that your messaging resonates with them. It will also give you a better idea of where they hang out online so that you can focus your efforts on those platforms or websites where they’re likely to find out about your course.
Invest in Quality Content
The quality of the content in your online courses should be top-notch if you want people to sign up and recommend it to others. Investing in high-quality video production, compelling audio lectures, and engaging visuals will go a long way toward building trust among potential customers and encouraging them to purchase the course. It’s also important that all of this content is optimized for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) so that it can be easily found by search engines like Google and Bing when potential customers search for topics related to the courses offered by your business or corporation.
Now that we have the strategy planning unpacked let’s talk about the setup of your course.
Everything we cover in this section is vital to the success of marketing. Even the best marketing strategies can’t support a poor setup and delivery of your course.
The Winning Setup Process
Step 1: Choose Your Video Hosting Platform
The first step is to choose which platform will host your course videos. There are a variety of options, such as YouTube, Vimeo, Udemy, and more. Each platform has different features and benefits that may appeal more to certain types of courses than others.
For example, YouTube is free but doesn’t offer the same level of control over pricing and content as other platforms. LOOM, however, is a great tool at the paid level. It’s easy to embed in your course hosting platform and allows for full-screen share or screen share + instructor view. What I love about LOOM is how easy it is to include closed captions in each lesson. We’re all about being ADA Compliant in every way around here.
Consider what platform best suits your needs before committing to one option.
Step 2: Choose Your Course Hosting Platform
There are a wide variety of options available when it comes to course hosting. We love Kajabi for it’s ease of use for the user and the minimal tech info needed to maintain and grow within the platform. However, there are less expensive options for hosting your course or courses. To make the best decision for you, my suggestion is to do 2 things:
- Evaluate where you are now. This means budget, expected enrollment, and plan for growth of your course student volume. You should also consider whether or not you’ll be able to bring on a team who understands the tech, capabilities, and set-up required for a high-quality user experience or if you will be DIYing this round (we rarely recommend that).
- Evaluate where you are going. I tell every course creating client, you’ve got to go into this space thinking big. Are you going to launch more courses, do you plan to have a program or mastermind included with your course, and will you offer affiliate and partner commissions as you create more visibility and ‘thought-leader’ status in your space?
Once you can answer these questions, it will be easiest to look at the capabilities of each platform and determine what works for the now and what can support your growth long-term.
Step 3: Get Organized
The organization is key when creating a successful online course. This means having all of your materials in one place so that students can easily navigate through them without becoming overwhelmed or confused about where they should start or what they should do next. This can be done by creating an outline or flowchart of how each lesson in the course will flow into one another. Additionally, it’s important to consider how long each lesson should be so that students don’t become bored or lose interest quickly if a lesson takes too long.
Step 4: Create Engaging Content
Once you have chosen your platform and organized your materials, it’s time to create engaging content for your course! Engaging content is essential for any successful course because it helps keep students interested and engaged throughout the entire experience. Some tips for creating engaging content include using visuals such as videos, photos, diagrams, etc., adding interactive elements like quizzes or polls at the end of lessons, and telling stories that students can relate to on a personal level. Additionally, make sure that all of your content is relevant and up-to-date with current industry trends so that students feel confident learning from you!
The big question now is, what is the best approach when it comes to mapping out your marketing strategy? How are you going to share your course, captivate your audience, and convert sales? The key to success here is… do your research.
Setting up your Marketing Framework
Define Your Target Audience
The first step in any successful marketing campaign is to define who you are targeting with your message. Who is the ideal customer for your product or service? What needs do they have that you can meet? Answering these questions will help you craft a message that resonates with them and makes them more likely to buy from you.
Research Your Competitors
Take some time to research your competitors’ online courses before launching yours, so that you can understand what works—and what doesn’t—in the marketplace. This will give you valuable insights into what people are looking for in an online course, which will help you craft one that stands out from the crowd. It will also give you ideas about how to position yourself in the marketplace and differentiate yourself from other providers of similar products or services.
Set Goals for Your Campaign
Before launching your campaign, set measurable goals for yourself so that you can track its success over time. Think about what kind of return on investment (ROI) would make this campaign a success, and then design your plan accordingly. Also, think about how long it might take before the results start coming in; if it takes too long to see results, consider tweaking your plan or adjusting your goals accordingly.
Digital Marketing Strategies for Online Courses
Marketing online courses require a different approach than traditional marketing. It’s important to remember that people buying online courses are typically looking for more than just a product—they want an experience, education, and transformation. Therefore, your digital marketing strategies should focus on creating this experience and building relationships with potential customers.
Social Media Marketing
Use social media to reach your target audience, build relationships with them, and create a sense of community around your course. Share content related to the topics you cover in the course, engage with potential customers by asking questions and building conversations around relevant topics, and use visuals such as photos or videos whenever possible.
Networking on niche Twitter chats, Facebook groups, forums, and LinkedIn groups can also be a great way to get the word out about your online course.
A strong social media presence can get you tens of thousands of followers and leads in a very short amount of time, so it’s worth investing your time and energy into this strategy.
Market online courses using targeted ads on search engines and online platforms such as YouTube Ads, Google Ads or Facebook Ads to reach potential customers and drive them to your website. With the right targeting, you can get in front of the people most likely to be interested in your course and increase your conversions over time. You can leverage the power of demographics, geolocation, interests, and more to put your courses in front of the right people.
Create an email list for your course and use it to nurture potential customers. You can send emails to share helpful content, offer exclusive discounts or bonuses, promote upcoming webinars or workshops, and provide updates on new products or services you’re offering. A free email course or a free PDF can be a great way to build your list and get people interested in what you have to offer.
The perfect way to convert those emails into customers is by developing a captivating course sales page. A well-designed course sales page can help increase conversions and entice potential customers to sign up for your course.
Give your learners the details they need to make an informed decision about taking your course, such as its content and who it would benefit. To help them achieve this goal, include social proof like glowing reviews from prior students or success stories that demonstrate the value of completing your course. Finally, don’t forget a clear call-to-action that encourages potential enrollees by giving them directions on how to sign up for your program.
Promote Your Course on Your YouTube Channel
Boosting your online course business begins with letting the world know what you offer. Creating a YouTube Channel is an excellent way to achieve this goal—it will help elevate visibility, maximize exposure, and reach an extensive audience.
Jumpstart your online course launch with a captivating YouTube trailer that articulates the value you’ll be bringing to viewers. Use this video as an invitation to get people interested in the course. Make sure to highlight the main points of the course, such as its duration and the type of content it covers.
Once you’ve created the trailer, start creating tutorials or instructional videos related to your course topic and upload them regularly. This will help viewers get an idea of what type of content they would be getting if they purchase your course. Additionally, use YouTube Live Events to promote webinars and courses that are offered by your business.
Create Multiple Courses
Creating multiple courses is an effective online course marketing tactic to reach a larger audience and generate leads. Offer free mini courses related to the main course and additional content like e-books, digital downloads, or online tools. This will not only help you tap into a larger market but will also help you upsell existing customers and get repeat business.
Optimize for SEO
Online course creators looking to Sell online courses on their website and YouTube need to pay special attention to SEO. Conduct keyword research and optimize your course page and titles accordingly. This will help you rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs) and get more organic traffic to your website or YouTube channel.
Boosting your SERP ranking requires more than just utilizing keywords related to your course; creating quality content that effectively responds to customer pain points is essential. But it doesn’t stop there! Blogging with useful information and adding backlinks from relevant websites can improve visibility on search engine results pages.
Developing relationships with your customers is just as essential as promoting your courses. An outstanding way to bond with them is by producing a podcast and making it available on major platforms like iTunes, Spotify, and Stitcher. As you create content for the podcast, consider topics related to the online classes you offer and explore those ideas thoroughly when conversing with industry influencers or experts in that domain.
Having a podcast expands brand recognition and helps identify individuals who could benefit from utilizing services offered by your business!
With all the marketing strategies discussed above, you can effectively promote your online courses and generate more leads. Do remember, however, that course promotion is an ongoing process. Keep up with the latest trends in digital marketing and update existing strategies to take your marketing efforts to the next level.
Launching an online course marketing campaign requires careful planning and thoughtfulness in order to be successful; taking these three steps before beginning will help ensure that your efforts pay off in terms of increased sales and ROI. As long as you keep your target audience in mind, research the competition, and set realistic goals for yourself, there’s no reason why your online course won’t be a success! Good luck!