10 Steps to Create and Sell Your Online Course
📖 Read time: 3 minutes and 26 seconds
Hey creator friend,
In this guide, I'll share how I built my recent video course in less than 3 weeks and for less than $100.
After reading this, you know how to get started with ideating, creating, and selling your own course.
Building digital products can seem to be difficult.
But, it hasn't to be that way.
You don’t need a million-dollar production.
Here’s the I built the LinkedIn Growth System:
Step 1: Gauge demand and validate the idea.
I noticed that my audience struggled with the same challenges and I received many similar questions.
So, I asked the people if they werre willing to pay for a solution.
Without validation, no building.
I published a few of these posts throughout that period.
Step 2: Structure the course.
I started with putting a big constraint in place.
I wanted the course to be accessible and digestible so I wanted to keep the curriculum for two hours of watching.
The promise of the course is to teach the student how to grow a powerful personal brand on LinkedIn.
There are many different aspects of this, so I decided to stick with 10 pillars, divided into three subsections.
Every pillar comes with one big video, 3 text sections, many frameworks, and real-life examples.
This is what the initial blueprint of the course looked like:
Step 3: Create a waitlist and collect emails.
It's crucial to capture early interest by having people sign up on the waitlist.
I did this by asking for their email.
Having such a waitlist gives a couple of benefits:
- You collect email subscribers
- You build a direct line of communication with potential customers
- You can create brand ambassadors by giving sign-ups additional bonuses (discounts, extra products, more access)
I created a simple landing page in Convertkit:
Step 4: Create a simple product page.
The easiest way to sell your digital product is with Gumroad.
It's one of the most trusted platforms among creators, so use this to your benefit.
Gumroad is also the platform that collects payments, combined with Stripe and PayPal (in the back-end)
The product page on Gumroad:
Step 5: Do a pre-sale.
Without payment, no building.
I made sure to collect money upfront.
You want to make sure to not be left empty-handed.
This adds a lot of accountability to the mix, as people paid you for something already.
They will do everything they can to help you build the best product.
The people who purchase a product that is in pre-order and hasn't proven itself, are potentially great brand ambassadors.
People you should keep a close tab on.
Step 6: Build the product (part 1)
Remember what I said in the beginning?
I wanted to create some digestible and accessible.
What did I do?
I created 10 slide decks in Google Presentation, covering the course materials.
Not too shabby, but there's more.
Step 7: Build the product (part 2)
Again, the course needed to be digestible.
The best way to do that?
In my opinion, short videos.
I made videos with Tella, simply narrating the slides.
As with every building phase, stuff went wrong. Just enjoy this quick blooper.
Step 8: Build the product (part 3)
Cool, I had the videos (edited and all).
I needed a place to store all the course content.
That's where Notion came into play.
It hosts the full course: video, texts, frameworks, images, screenshots, and external links.
Everything is under one umbrella.
Step 9: Do marketing (part 1)
Remember the waitlist you built in step 3?
You don't want to forget to email them.
They're on the list for a reason.
Send them frequent updates, and promos, and behind the scenes (like I'm doing here).
Just make sure to nurture your list.
I sent emails from both Gumroad and ConvertKit.
Step 10: Do marketing (part 2)
Where your email list is turn subscribers into fans and customers, you want to use your socials to attract new people into your world.
You might ask "Is it not a bad thing to market your products and services on a social platform?"
Well, if you believe that your product makes the lives of your audience better, at a fair price point, why should yoy keep it secret from them?
I use both my audiences on Twitter and LinkedIn to market the product:
- Validate the idea on Twitter, LinkedIn, and in DMs.
- Build the course overview in a simple Google Spreadsheet.
- Build a landing page for the waitlist and collect emails.
- Create a simple product page with Gumroad.
- Do a pre-sale.
- Structure the course curriculum by slidedecks in Google Presentation.
- Make videos with Tella.
- Host the full course in Notion.
- Send emails from both Gumroad and ConvertKit.
- Use your existing audiences on Twitter and LinkedIn to market the product.