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How to Create an Online Course That Sells From a Teacher’s Perspective

In this week’s episode,  I share what it’s like to create and sell a course from a teacher’s perspective. I also showcase some amazing students that recently “hit publish” on their own course or service!

Listen on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Anchor | Transcripts

Table of Contents

A Bit of Background For You

I started out teaching both preschool and kindergarten. It was so much fun and I learned a lot about how to create imaginative and interactive in-person lessons. But, what I most found intriguing was speaking with and helping educate adults. That’s why I decided to pivot in my career and began to study Instructional Design. Over my career in corporate, I’ve helped to train over 300+ employees across multiple industries including software training for a car finance company, credit, financial fundamentals, and written fundamentals for young professionals. 

I honestly found that big companies got stuck on creating training material, because even with fancy technology and software – the overall budget and timelines often were delayed due to changes in software, budget approvals, or due to unforseen complexities. This made the online training environment difficult for employees – who needed training right then and there. 

What would have been more efficient use of resources and time for mid-size or larger organizations would have been to create micro-trainings. Smaller training sessions on a specific topic with a targeted outcome to master. This gives both employees quicker success in accomplishing a task proficiently and helps the trainer and team build confidence and mastery in a topic. 

You might be thinking to yourself- but I’m a small business owner – how the heck does this even relate to me? I’ll get there I promise. 

As I first started to dive into helping small business owners, there were different challenges in creating an online course, especially for those who identify as people of color. As a mixed Filipino-Mexican woman, I found that I too struggled with creating an online course, while working full-time- and also attending to family and my Master’s program. While bigger companies with large budgets and teams – smaller business owners actually struggled to see sales, take time away from their families, and find success with applying business concepts that seemed “too abstract”.

Of the 30.7 million small business owners currently accounted for by the Small Business Administration, more than 80% of business owners currently operate their company without the aid of paid employees

Small Business Administration

Break Down the Content in Bite Size Pieces

So how do we actually create a course that reaps real results? I cover my framework and methodology for creating online course best in these articles: How to Create an Online Course and How to Plan an Online Course Launch in 2021. I think the key to creating easy to apply concepts is “Less is More”. 

 

A study led by Satterwhite (2018) shed light on edupreneur’s desire to learn and acquire technical knowledge with an emphasis on transformative learning experiences such as reflective exercises.

Satterwhite

When you create a course that filled with “way too much information”, your learner will often get too overwhelmed. In the training world, I often heard colleagues say, “It’s like drinking water from a firehose.” But the issue is that many marketer’s seem to think that Value = MORE. But in reality, this leads to inaction from your student, causing them to get confused, and leading to poor results. So skip out on trying to add 3 bonuses and tons of “extras” that don’t really need to be there just because you’re not sure if it has value. 

Instead ask yourself…

  • How can I make this lesson easy to apply?
  • What would make my student’s life easier?
  • How can I save my student time? 

Create Your Course in Stages

Ideally, you’ll want to spend the “least” amount of time on developing your product and the “majority” of time refining and marketing your product. I know I’m making my perfectionist entrepreneur friends squirm in their seat. “Wait! What about my workbook???” you might be wondering. “I don’t want to sell junk!” you might be thinking. I hear you – loud and clear.  Hear me out. The truth is that your product isn’t for you. Your product is for your customer, and it’s much better to create a minimum viable product, receive feedback, tweak it, then ask for feedback and launch it again. I cover lots of these concepts inside my course Digital Product Toolkit – which covers my process for beta selling your minimum viable product

Creating "Launch" Selling Assets

During the launch stages of your course, you’re most likely going to create graphics, social media content, email marketing sequences, and maybe a few different blog or long -form content. Here’s the truth. If you plan on selling your program for several years or for the long-term, think about ways you can optimize your marketing so that you can lean on them when you are planning on marketing your product again or “re-launching”. I actually keep a folder on Canva with all my graphics associated to products so I can tweak or re-use them when I need to. Below is an example of frequently asked questions I created with a reel I made. 

Optimize Your Content for Evergreen

I use call to actions in all of my long-form content. This means that when I’m creating content on my blog, youtube, or podcast – I tell people how to sign-up, where to find my services, and what results they should expect. Here are some easy calls-to-action you can use for your own business and marketing your course. 

  • Opt-ins for your form in your blog
  • Pin a comment on Youtube for your freebie
  • Link to your offers in a Livestream on Youtube or Facebook 

Student Showcase!

At the time of publishing this blog post, I recently ran a live workshop called The Thinkific Genius Lab, where I covered everything you need to scale your course business with Thinkific. Several of these students hit publish on their latest course and program in less than two weeks!

Make A Great Impression by Vivien

Make a great, lasting impression! Package your art prints, craft items, and luxury items like a professional and create a big impact on your customers!

All on a summers day. July Podcast Done In A Day VIP Experience

Raphie

Let’s take action and get that podcast out in the world ! Are you ready? Imagine having a path to follow, a guide to provide a way on path, a guide on that path to kick away the rocks, and move the road blocks along the way. When you reach the end of that path, you will have a completed process, a precise list action steps completed, and a minimal doable and understandable action steps “to do” list! Leave knowing what to record, and how to record. In addition, you will have launch plan and dates too!

KUDOS System

Templates, tools, and a process to get your rave reviews on record!

Grab my free Course Creator Starter Outline

Grab this free Course Creator Starter Outline so you can create high impact virtual training programs!

In Conclusion

Take a moment to celebrate your wins, small or big! Sometimes when you start to look back on where you’ve been and where you are now you’ll start to see a bigger picture of accomplishments you can help your ideal customers achieve.