You must’ve heard a term “product launch” and wondered, how it actually works. Therefore, let’s review two course launch strategies that will help you to launch your online course or any e-online product with a blast!
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Both of these course launch strategies can be used in various situations, whether you’re launching an e-course, product or just want to give out a special offer. But my focus here will be on course launching for new online entrepreneurs.
Both of these course launch strategies can also be adjusted to your specific needs and preferences but the samples in this lesson are provided from some of the most-used and proven to be successful course launch strategies.
Disclaimer: This blog post includes affiliate links.
Course launch strategies for new online entrepreneurs
STRATEGY #1 Email marketing launch
This, quite possibly, is one of the all-time-popular course launch strategies.
Basically, it means a dedicated email marketing funnel that informs people about your launch and makes them want your product.
STEP #1: Build an email list
To make this course launch strategy successful, you need a list to launch for.
The baseline is as follows: by providing free offers that meet your specific audience needs, you build a mailing list that’ll be interested in your bigger and more expensive offer.
When building a mailing list, keep in mind:
- Give out a free offer that is RELEVANT to your bigger offer. It can be a lesson from your course, bonus material, related Worksheet, etc.
- Give for free A LOT. To gain trust and prove your knowledge. But keep it reasonable! A free e-book or 4-lesson course can be enough but 1-page checklist might not always cut it.
- Don’t mind if people come and go. You want only interested and dedicated people on your list.
- Focus on building a mailing list no matter your initial launch strategy. Having a profitable email list can go a long way!
STEP #2: Create email funnel
This is where the fun starts!
Usually, it’s said that the most successful course launch strategies should consist of around 6 emails sent out within a week or more emails – sent out within a longer period of time.
I suggest sticking with 6-7 emails for your first launch so you don’t overdo it and can improve from there.
Here’s what your mailing list should consist of:
- EMAIL #1 Introduction to your upcoming product – build the tension! Let people know how amazing product is coming up.
- EMAIL #2 How this product can change your reader’s life – how can it improve whatever it’s supposed to improve! Include reviews from your Beta testers or initial students, if possible.
- EMAIL #3 Prove your experience with additional tips related to your topic. Share your knowledge and show how much useful information you can give in this course.
- EMAIL #4 Share your story – how did you get where you are and how the strategies you’re sharing have helped you along the way? GET REAL!
- EMAIL #5 LAUNCH!! Give your folks an initial discount or bonus offers. Give them a reason to make the sale NOW.
- EMAIL #6 Will this work for you? Get rid of any doubt your readers might have and answer the question whom it will work for the best!
- EMAIL #7 Last call!! Within a day or two, you can send out a reminder about the offer. In the ideal option, you could also include some reviews.
Although most likely, the product can be purchased after the last call, you can either evoke the discount code, increase the price or eliminate the bonuses. That way, you can use these bonuses later for some special promo events and keep people on the edge to buy NOW.
The sequence of the emails can change based on your preferences. Following one exact pattern won’t be as successful if you don’t keep in mind your audience.
Also, you can easily adjust this sequence and add an email that might be more relevant to your topic or eliminate the one that’ll do you no good. If you want to learn more about specific email funnels and figure out the best way for you and your audience – join mailing lists of those who are successful in your field and evaluate what they’re doing!
This sequence is one of the most bulletproof course launch strategies you’ll see around A LOT.
STRATEGY #2: Make a Webinar
You must’ve noticed that Webinars are going all over the place big time. And it’s a no surprise!
A Webinar is an amazing way to show your expertise and get people to trust you. Once you’re out there – speaking with your audience, being seen and heard – you get more fans. People hook on personalities.
Even if you think you don’t have the best speaking skills, you’re not good in front of a camera or overall you’re just not that into getting in front of people – this also is one of the best and most popular course launch strategies and can be very valuable for your business.
The trick is simple: not always your webinar has to be perfect to get sales. All you need to do is to show up and let your folks now – they can trust you, you’re real!
It’s easy to hide on the other side of the screen, write emails and blog posts, promote through social media, without really reaching out to your audience. I get it! But if you’re up for taking a risk or maybe this just really is something that’d work for you even better than creating, make sure to give it a try!
I can promise one thing – you won’t get any fewer sales because you’ve done a webinar… 🙂
Okay… So HOW to make a webinar happen?!
STEP #1: Decide on the Webinar’s topic
Well, obviously, before making any further steps, you should decide what are you going to talk about.
The topic should be:
- relevant to your online course. It can be either a part of one lesson, something one should do BEFORE your course is taken (for example, “How to create a website?” before you sell course “Blog post promo”)
- focused and actionable. If you create a Webinar on a very wide topic with no action plan – people will get no useful results out of it.
At the end of the Webinar, offer a special course offer for attendees!
STEP #2: Decide where your Webinar will happen
Oh, there definitely are way too many options to choose from… But let me tell you this – your webinar can, just as well, be a Facebook Live!
Here’s how it works. You need to gather people’s email addresses to know who’s interested in your webinar. It can be done in two ways:
- by using an opt-in form from your email marketing service, just like you’d do with any free opt-in you’re sharing OR
- by using dedicated Webinar creation services opt-in/sales page, which would request using an additional service
If you choose the first option: you get all email addresses but any further job has to get done manually. This is a great option if you’re on a tight budget. You should create an email sequence which reminds about the upcoming webinar:
EMAIL #1: Thank You for signup – your seat is registered
EMAIL #2: Reminder a few days before
EMAIL #3: Reminder an hour or two before – with access info
Therefore, if you decide to create a webinar on your Facebook page, you can just send out an email informing people on what time they can catch you going live on Facebook. Easy as that! You can just as well use Youtube or any other Live Streaming option.
If you choose the second option: you can sign up for any Webinar platform and they already have the whole system ready for you. Platforms like that usually:
- host a webinar
- offer a platform where you can create a Sales page
- lets you set up a reminder emails or any further email sequence
But! This is an additional expense and might not always be worth it if you’re just giving it a try. Yes, dedicated Webinar service could be easier to use and with a better setup necessary for the Webinar hosting. But it’s absolutely possible to host a webinar without using any of these.
Here are some of the Webinar platforms you can use:
This one of course launch strategies would work the best if you’re ready to invest in a quality system. But it’s not a must-have to make it happen.
STEP #3: Create a Webinar Sales page
Next up: you need to promote your Webinar to get some signups! And the most effective way, first of all, is to create a Sales page.
Once again, you can get this done in several various ways:
- MailerLite or any similar email marketing service gives you an option to create a landing page where you can add all the necessary information. Once the person signs up, you can trigger an email sequence with all the relevant info.
- ClickFunnels is the next level option. You can create stunning Sales pages either from their templates or from ground zero. Besides that, you can also create a full email sequence and even finalize it with a Webinar at the end – making it all automated. ClickFunnels also give an option to connect with various Webinar software, for example, WebinarJam. Basically, ClickFunnels can assure you the full experience but you’ll definitely have to pay more for that!
- You can also use your own website and create a sales page there or choose any third-party Sales page service, for example, LeadPages.
But what to include in a Sales page?!
I could write a whole book to answer this question… but let’s keep this simple.
Basically, all Webinar Sales pages include the following:
- Headline focusing on what a person will get from this webinar
- Time & date of the event
- An introductory video with the speaker explaining the point of the webinar or at least a photo of the main speaker and some basic info
- More descriptive information – most likely, checkpoints – on the topics that’ll be covered and main problems that’ll get solved within this Webinar
STEP #4: Promote
To get signups, you need to promote! Here are just a few ideas to work with:
- Facebook ads
- Blog posts about the webinar
- Guest blog posts
- Being a guest on other webinars
Other promo ideas after the course launch…
While I’m sure that one way or another these strategies might work for you, I’m more than happy to provide some other ideas to work with.
So what to do when your course is live and you’re ready to make some sales but feel a bit… stuck?!
Write guest posts
By writing a blog post relevant to your course topic you can establish your authority, reach out to a new audience and add a link to your course!
Guest posts are great not only to promote your course but also to establish better SEO rates. The more high-quality backlinks you have to your website – the better for your search engine results. A backlink is any link on another website leading back to your page.
When searching for quest post options, make sure to find people in a niche relevant to yours so their audience would be interested in your offer. But… where to search?! Well, you can either research blogs relevant to yours and pitch them through an email or, even better, join Facebook groups and pitch people there! Find out more about how to use these groups in Social Media Marketing lesson.
Use Pinterest & Tailwind
I’m repeating myself with this advice but Pinterest really can be THAT important to your success!
Create vertically long graphics to promote on Pinterest that lead both to your course sales page and a blog post about the course (as in, one graphic will lead to the Sales page, another one – to the blog post). The more various graphics you create – the more people you can reach. Then share it all on relevant group boards!
Tailwind is a Pinterest scheduling tool. But not only! It also has a thing called Tribes where you can join, just as it is with Pinterest group boards, and promote to a way bigger audience than you have yourself. Once I got started on Tailwind – my sales grew like crazy!
Make videos: either live or recorded
Even if you don’t have a huge audience, video making can improve your audience’s engagement. Just like I’ve mentioned when talking about Webinars – seeing you build trust. And your videos don’t need to be perfect!