How to Launch an Online Course Successfully
Are you looking to learn how to launch an online course successfully? The power in selling your online course comes down to strategy and planning, whilst avoiding common mistakes along the way.
If you’re ready to launch your new course or you’ve already launched, yet it didn’t go to plan, then read on.
Within the yoga teacher community, it’s common for teachers who are creating an online course, to have an expectation of how many sales they wish to make during their first launch.
If they don’t hit that goal, they believe their course is a failure and often give up trying again. However, what they don’t realize is that to set yourself up for long term success, you need to understand the different elements of your business, students, marketing and more, to create a successful launch strategy that works.
The power of your launch success is supported by your launch strategy planning and preparing ahead of time.
The key is not be disheartened if only one to two people buy during your first launch. These one to two sales are real students who want to learn from you. They are valuable and it’s important to honour every student. Even one student can give you feedback and testimonials to help support and grow your business.
Many years ago, during one of our first launches at Digital Yoga Academy, we made $0. Our second launch brought in $30,000 followed by $60,000. Since then we’ve had multiple 6 figure launches and are scaling to 7 figures in course sales revenue.
As you can see it’s a journey. And that journey includes making mistakes and failing along the way. Embrace these with open arms, as you learn and tweak your offer to become a profitable online yoga business.
It’s a common mistake that many yoga teachers and course creators put all of their energy into creating their course before they sell or launch it. Spending hours before they even sell it or know that it will sell.
In fact, their online course launch becomes an afterthought rather than at the forefront of their online course strategy.
We often hear yoga teachers say “I’ve finished creating my course. It’s taken me a year to create and now I need advice on how to get students to join.”
Creating the course is only half the battle. The key is to spend just as much time, planning and creating your marketing strategy, as you do in creating the course content itself. In fact, the goal is to create your launch strategy up front, before you even create your course.
If you have created a course in the past, before you think about your marketing and launch strategy, you’re not alone.
We see this time and time again. In fact, that is something we teach inside of our Profitable Yoga Teacher course. How to do your market research, plan your launch and get clear on who your audience is. Setting up the foundation for a successful course launch.
The thing is, you try to do all of this on your own, piecing together what you need to do, researching strategies and endlessly searching online. Trying to work out the right way and how to make it work. In truth this can take you hours of research and a lot of trial and error.
That’s what our students love about the Profitable Yoga Teacher course. They love the support they receive, learning from those that have successfully launched their online course. Avoiding many costly and timely mistakes along the way. We teach you how to launch the right way.
The key is not to give up. See failure or low numbers as a learning experience. Know that things going wrong is totally normal and part of the process. You just need to shift your mindset that your launch was a success, even if you only had one student enrol.
Remember that your launch strategy and marketing efforts are powerful players in the success of your online course.
Another big part of why a launch might not always go to plan, is because you don’t understand what a launch actually involves.
We see yoga teachers time and time again, launch their course by sharing a few posts on Instagram or sending an email to their email list. That’s all they do.
Often times they don’t know what a launch looks like or what’s involved. They are stabbing in the dark trying to figure it out along the way. But in doing so, they miss out on many key components to help them launch successfully and sell an online course.
That’s what our students inside of our Launch Accelerator program love about the support they receive. They experience first-hand the power of their launch strategy as we walk them through the entire launch process in real time. We go through it together, step by step.
Which means avoiding the costly mistake of putting all of your heart and soul into creating an online course, that potentially no one wants or buys.
So, what are some of the key phases to successful launching your online course? Assuming that you’ve already validated and crafted your offer.
There are three phases, the Education Phase, Pre-Launch Phase and Launch Phase. These phases make up a two to three-month periods of time. Each phase has specific steps, campaign activity and content that specifically relates to the launch phase.
Inside of the Profitable Yoga Teacher we teach you how to plan and prepare for each stage, so that your marketing and communication is ready. Missing this essential step can lead to the failure of your online course launch. So, understanding how to market and communicate to your audience is key in launching your online course successfully.
A powerful element to creating a successful online course launch, is to get support. Seek out the guidance and help from others. Learn from those that have succeeded before you. You don’t have to do this alone.
These three launch phases give you the opportunity to get to know your audience and to prepare them for what’s to come. It creates buzz and momentum around your course and offer. As you do this, you also build your audience through these launch phases.
If you’re holding back on your course right now because you don’t have a large audience and you think you need this before you can launch your course…then this will keep holding you back.
Of course, it helps to have an engaged community and clarity about knowing who you’re speaking to and targeting. But you can go through this three phase launch process and build your audience at the same time.
When we first started, we focused on amplifying our relationships with a much smaller community instead of trying to get a smaller percentage of a larger community to buy. We trained our community from day one that even though our free offers, challenges, bootcamps and summits are incredible value…
We also have a paid offer with amazing value and incredible content.
When we did that the result was a $30,000 launch. This came about after making many mistakes along the way, trying to figure it all out. From making mistakes and persevering, we were able to finally grow our community whilst moving through the launch phases at the same time.
The key is to move through each launch phase and implement the steps in each phase, to bring about the success in selling your online course. Following these steps makes it so much easier and faster to market and sell your online course.
Ask yourself what topics can you start talking about now that you will cover later in your launch? When these launch phases are rolled out and done correctly, you will see the difference in engagement and ultimately sales.
What’s often missing from a launch strategy and not done effectively is email marketing and sales sequences or automations. Not just two emails or even five. But a sequence of strategically created and timed emails that are distributed over a ten to fourteen-day launch. This includes the open and close cart phase when your community can enrol into your course.
When it comes to marketing, it takes multiple interactions or touch points with your ideal customer before they are ready and willing to buy.
There’s the rule of seven, which is one of the oldest concepts in marketing. Which means the prospective buyer needs to hear or see your marketing message at least seven times before they buy from you.
The key is repetition and visibility. You are living in a world where your ideal customer is exposed to marketing messages, all day long. Therefore, repetition with your marketing messaging is key to standing out amongst the noise.
Sending two or even five emails will not be enough to enrol students into your course. That is the power of email automations and email marketing. To get in front of your ideal client over and over again.
Remember don’t be scared to email your list often in fear that people will unsubscribe. If someone unsubscribes, they were never going to buy from you. They are making room for a new subscriber who potentially will buy from you.
People don’t open every email they receive, and they certainly don’t read them all. So, it’s essential that your online course launch strategy is not missing a strategically created and timed, automated sales email sequence.
We cover this in great depth inside our Profitable Yoga Teacher and Launch Accelerator programs to ensure that our students have the knowledge and confidence to create a powerful email sales automation.
Another component that is often missing from a launch strategy is the sales element. You’re talking to your community and addressing their objections and questions.
This might look like having sales conversation or offering discovery calls. Ultimately it means having 121 conversations with people who you consider are hot leads. Hot leads are those who have come through your launch phases and remain engaged.
This helps you to more deeply understand their pain points and objections. Part of this is to set up a tracking system where you can track this information. Helping you to fully understand what part of your launch strategy and sales funnels are working and not working.
In reality, your students have many questions and objections to enrol in your online course. Many that you may not have previously considered or addressed. You’re then able to address these objections and pain points in your sales copy, sales pages, webinars, email marketing and more.
Remember, if your sales fell flat during the launch period, it could be that you’re missing this part of the sales process. Where you have the opportunity to connect more deeply with your prospective paying students and guide them to making the right decision for themselves.
This isn’t about persuading or forcing anyone. It’s about providing a sounding board for your community to make the best decision for them.
If you’re ready to go on this journey and get the support you need…then the Launch Accelerator is for you. This is a small group of 20 people inside of our mastermind high touch program, coaching and accountability. This program is about implementing your launch strategy the right way to create a greater impact on your business.
DISCOVER THE IMPACT YOUR’E HERE TO CREATE!
At Digital Yoga Academy we are passionate about helping yoga teachers, giving them the strategies, tools and support to build successful online yoga businesses!
The Digital Yoga Academy Facebook group is a community of thousands of yoga teachers all over the world.
There are weekly live trainings with Kelly McHugh, our founder & CEO, business talks with inspiring yoga teachers, daily educational content and loads of support.
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