Essentials on Selling an Online Course: Content Creator Marketing and Sales Strategies

Selling courses online: step by step

How do you sell courses online? What are the best ways that content creators can market and sell courses to make a profit?

To sell online courses, there are five main steps:

  1. Find your target audience
  2. Create the beginning and outline of your course
  3. Have the right sales mindset
  4. Promote it
  5. Complete it

The first step is critical, because without knowing who you want to reach with your course, how will you know what they need or care about?

How to do Market Research to Sell Your Courses Online

If you already have an online presence, the first place to do your market research is with your current followers.

  • What problems do they have that you can help them solve?
  • Are there questions are they always asking?
  • What would they be interested in learning more about?

The next place to look for your target market is on social media, where your audience may be spending a lot of time. Look at the hashtags and keywords that they use to find out what’s important to them.

You can also do market research by creating surveys or polls about topics related to your topic area. Another tip is to mine the comment section on important books in your area to see what people are saying, and what they are still looking for.

Have the right sales mindset.

Before you start promoting the course, you also want to make sure to have the right sales mindset. It’s normal to feel self doubt before putting something out into the world, but it’s important that your confidence in what you’re selling come through in your marketing.

Here are some sales mindset tips to help you with your course sales:

  • Visualize your potential customers, and their current situation. Where are they stuck? Now, visualize how your course will help them. What is the “after” once they finish the course?
  • Think of your own personal successes. What struggles have you overcome? Did you create the course because you were able to solve a problem for yourself no one else could help with?
  • Remember WHY you want to create and sell courses in the first place. Not the course itself, but the reason you want to create extra income for your family.
  • Go all in on your efforts, BUT also detach from the results of the course sales. Remember: it doesn’t matter if you meet the goal or not, because every action you take moves you forward whether you make money or not. Your time will come, your success will happen, change is inevitable – if you keep going no matter what.

The second step is to promote your course.

I recommend that clients start selling their courses BEFORE finishing them. So, before building the course, we are now going to start promoting it!

Isn’t that putting the cart before the horse?

No. It’s not.

A lot of people get caught up in the idea that they have to have a course 100% ready before they can sell it, but this is fundamentally wrong. You need to know who you’re trying to reach with your course and what their needs are, then create the best possible resource for them.

A great way to do that is with a beta launch. A beta launch releases the beginning of your course to a limited number of people, at a great price.

This allows you to get early feedback from your target market and make changes before you officially launch. You then create the rest of the course as your beta students progress through it, helping create the best possible product – and also market testing your course BEFORE you spend weeks creating it.

All you really need to do this is your course title, outline, first lesson or two, and your promotional graphics and copy.

Finding more buyers

The best way to do this is by targeting people who are already interested in your topic.

If you don’t already have a blog, start one and create original content related to the topics you’ll cover. Then, promote it on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

If you want to, consider doing joint venture webinars with experts who have large audiences that are related to your topic area. This is a great way to get new friends and affiliates whose followers will be interested in what you’re creating!

How to sell online courses from your own website.

The third step is to finish creating your course.

This may seem daunting, but there are many platforms that can make it easier, including Thinkific, Udemy and Teachable.

For your online course, it’s important to be thorough in your content, record high-quality videos, and write helpful accompanying text.

Avoid These Four Mistakes When Selling Your Courses Online

There are five common mistakes that content creators tend to make when marketing their online courses, and if you avoid these pitfalls, your course will be more likely to succeed.

#1: The first mistake is not using the right platform for hosting a course.

Make sure your chosen platform has all of the features you need at an affordable price.

Most platforms have different levels of service to purchase. If this is your first course, you probably don’t need all the bells and whistles of the higher level, more expensive tiers.

#2: The second mistake is not having high-quality content.

This will reflect poorly on your course and may dissuade potential students from enrolling. All your work, from your promotional graphics to your video lessons, should be as high quality as you can make them.

This DOESN’T mean that you should wait until your skills are perfect to launch a course. Your students are there for results, not flash and sparkle. If you are getting results for your students, allow yourself room to grow in your execution.

There will always be room for improvement, but you can’t improve if you never put yourself out there!

#3: Third, don’t forget to market your course!

Make sure you are targeting the right people with the right message so that they want to buy what you’re selling. If people don’t see you, they can’t buy from you.

Advertise on social media, email lists and other platforms to make sure you reach the right audience.

Be consistent about promoting each new course that comes out so that people will know when they can expect a release!

#4: Finally, don’t forget to track your results.

This will help you course correct as needed and ensure that your marketing efforts are effective.

To summarize, here are some of the most important tips on how course creators can sell more online courses:

  1. Create valuable videos that cover the topic thoroughly and engagingly
  2. Market your course to the right audience by using the best platform for hosting courses
  3. Create great promotional strategies
  4. Make sure you produce high quality videos and text
  5. Don’t forget to market after your course is released
  6. Tracking results.

If you are struggling with how to sell your courses online, I can help.

I can work with you on any stage of the content creation process so that you can sell more courses and make money through digital marketing.

Go here and join the free group, Mindful Marketing Mavens, to learn more.


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