How To Pick A Topic
If you are stuck in picking a topic, don’t worry. Many of us get stuck at this step. If you think you need to be the “Guru” of a topic to create a course about it, you are wrong. You need to know more than the person who the course is intended for. So expect to do your homework in order to provide value to your customers. Always focus on creating the BEST course you can, providing the highest quality content possible.
Here are some ways to find topics:
reddit: If you have read this blog before you know the power of reddit and how useful it can be for finding ideas and validating them. While going through the site, think of a general topic, lets say golf. So in the search bar I would type in Golf.
As you can see, there are 33,000+ people who subscribe to this “sub-reddit”. You think this would be a good topic to look into? I think so!
You can also see there is a need for people to progress their skills. So now that we have a general topic, we need to niche down and get more focused. Off the top of my head, we could teach people how to improve their swing, how to put better, how to improve stance/form etc…. The more specific the better. When people are searching for an answer, they are searching for something very specific and want a specific answer.
Google Keyword Planner: If we are not happy with the results above we can then turn to Google’s keyword tool. If you are not familiar with this tool, it allows you to peak into Google’s keywords for creating an advertising campaign. You are able to see the price of the keywords, the amount of searches per month and a long list of potential keywords to target for growing your course revenue.
After doing a bit of searching for keywords related to the golf topic, I came across a few problems people are actively searching for. As you can see, people want tips for their swing and putting. We now have two possible ideas for niche courses that people are searching for.
Validating Your Ideas
Before you spend all your time to create your amazing new course, you want to validate it. This ensures you are not wasting your time and that you have an audience waiting for your product to launch. The goal of validating your course is to get as many pre-sales as possible.
Gumroad: I have used Gumroad multiple time to not only process pre-sales and create landing pages without a website but to continue to generate sales after my launch. Once you have created your account and added your Paypal address in the settings so you can get paid, you need to add your pre-sale product.
Before you publish your product, create a nice image to help entice people using Canva.com as your cover image. Brush up on your copy writing skills over at CopyBlogger.com and write a sales page that is short, to the point and lets people know how you will solve their problem.
Now that you are ready to accept pre-sales, you need to find potential customers.
Remember reddit? Lets go back to the Golf sub-reddit and draft a little post. For this example I want to use my friend Eugene’s successful validation post for his Alibaba Crash Course. Notice how he simply asked a question. “Would you guys be interested? Yes=Up Vote No=Down Vote”. If the response was a no, then he would have moved onto something else. Luckily it was a huge success and he sold 800 copies of his course.
As he notices key questions people have about the idea, he does an EDIT on the main post to answer them. Once his idea was looking good, he made the move and created a landing page for people to sign up. Which they did!
Once he was done validating and pre-selling his idea, it was time to create the course.
Creating Your Course
Here comes the fun part; actually creating your course. You have a few options when it comes to turning your idea to a real product.
Video: This is my favorite method of creating a course. Some times writing simply does not capture everything you want to teach. By using software like Camtasia you are able to screen record slide shows and other requirements of your course as you talk over the video explaining everything. Then use something like iMovie to put all of the videos together into your featured film.
Ebook: If you are not comfortable or simply do not wish to create a video course, your next option is to create the traditional ebook. While creating your course you will want to write it out like you would a book. Each chapter explains a different aspect of the topic and a detailed teaching of it.
The Hybrid: If you really want to provide the best quality product consider creating videos and pdf files that further break down your teachings. You can create work sheets to help accompany your videos and give actionable steps for your customers to take.
Things to include:
1. Resource List
2. work sheets
3. broken down steps to take
4. Transcripts of videos
Marketing Your Launched Course
Landing Pages: Once you have launched your product you will still need to set up shop for future sales. Creating a landing page is easy with Unbounce. Use one of their templates and connect either Gumroad or Shoutly (This will be the best option) for payment processing and delivering your product.
Traffic: Traffic is the lifeblood of your sales. No traffic, no sales. You can achieve traffic through a number of ways:
– Guest Blogging
I would advise you to try each one of these traffic generation methods as each is very useful. The more keywords you rank for in Google with SEO the more free traffic you get, the more guest posts you do, the more hooks you put out for people to find your site and paid…. well you pay!
Udemy: Udemy is an online course marketplace which will allow you to upload your course and tap into thousands of potential customers. Run promotions and gain traction for a huge increase in revenue of your course.
Affiliates: This is something I have recently been testing. You can easily triple your traffic by finding affiliates to promote your product. I have been using Shoutly (Affiliate Link But Is Free To Use) to create affiliate campaigns and drive a ton of traffic to my landing page. The best thing about Shoutly is they have created their own marketplace similar to Udemy but for people who are looking to promote your courses. Once accepted into the marketplace, you will have hundreds of people looking at your course who are looking for something to promote for a commission. I give anywhere from 50-75% of sales to my affiliates. Hey, its free traffic and sales!
Tell Me What You Think In The Comments: I had a blast writing this post and want to know your thoughts. Did you enjoy this post or have any questions about creating and promoting courses? Post in the comments below!