15 Ways to Grow Your Course Business Today

hand drawing graph chart with upward line - grow course businessWant to take your learning business to new levels? Here are 15 ideas you can take action on today.

1. Improve your landing pages

Make sure your landing pages – aka your sales pages – are pulling their weight. A few small changes could convert many more site visitors to customers. For more on this, see Landing Pages 101 for Selling Online Courses.

2. Create a new (or first) lead magnet

Make sure you have high-value downloads, videos, checklists, etc. targeted to the major groups of prospective learners you are targeting. Lead magnets help you grow your e-mail list while also clearly demonstrating your authority and the value you can provide to learners. Here’s some help on lead magnet ideas.

3. Improve your SEO

Getting people to your landing pages, lead magnets, and ultimately, your courses requires helping them find you in the first place. Make sure you have the basics covered when it comes to search engine optimization. For more on this, see Using SEO to Sell Online Courses.

4. Raise – maybe even triple – your price

Pricing is a powerful tool, one that is often overlooked or used poorly. Learn to use it effectively – and read this as a starting point.

5. Improve your home base

Your “home base” is the Web site you actually own and manage – not Facebook, not Udemy – and you really have to take it seriously if you want to succeed at selling online. Check out Getting Serious About Your Home Base.

6. Write a new (or first) pillar post

I’m going to make the assumption you have a blog. (You do, right?) The benefits of having a blog are enormous. Your blog should feature multiple “long form” posts (more than 1000 words, and ideally more than 3000) that really go deep on providing useful, actionable information on topics your readers really care about. These are often referred to as pillar posts because they are like pillars that hold up your Web site and your business. 15 Platforms to Publish and Sell Online Courses would be a key example on this blog.

7. Guest post on other blogs

If you want to build an audience, you need to be seen in places that audience hangs out. Hopefully that includes your own site, but to get to people who don’t already know about you, posting on other, relevant blogs is a great idea. I’ve done that here and here, for example.

8. Get interviewed

Getting interviewed by bloggers or podcasters in your niche or related, relevant niches can be a great way to jump start your marketing efforts and reach target prospects who may not know about you yet. For additional thoughts on this, see What’s the best way to market online courses?

9. Gather and publish testimonials

Testimonials are a powerful form of “social proof.” If you don’t have any or many high quality testimonials from your customers, make it a point to start getting them today and putting them on your sales pages and other relevant parts of your site. Always get a photo (or video) and name to go with the testimonial. Here’s Michael Stelzner of Social Media Examiner talking about How to Use Testimonials in Your Marketing. (ThriveLeads, by the way, offers a great tool to manage testimonials in a WordPress site.)

10. Speak at a face-to-face Event

Find an organization likely to attract people from your audience and submit a speaking proposal. Obvious possibilities include local chambers of commerce as well as trade and professional associations that serve your field. For association contacts, see the National Trade and Professional Associations Directory (which you can probably also find at your local library).

11. Host a virtual event

This might be a single Webinar. It might be a free virtual summit in which you recruit a variety of guest experts to participate. Or, it might be a virtual conference for which you charge a fee. The first two are great for building your audience and e-mail list, the second a potential source of new revenue.

12. Recruit high quality affiliates

Affiliates market your courses in exchange for a commission when a sale is made based on their referral. Finding good affiliates requires work, but if you can get the right ones, it can be a real boost to your business. For additional thoughts, see Qualities of Good Affiliates for Selling Your Courses.

13. Outsource non-strategic activities

As much as possible, get other people to do the things that do not really contribute to the distinctive value of your course offerings. Like, for example, keeping the books, maintaining your Web site, or even doing the nitty gritty parts of developing your courses (See Where to Find Help Creating Online Courses). Figure out one thing you could outsources today and go find help on a site like Upwork.

14. Diversify your income streams

If you are creating online courses, you undoubtedly have expertise that can be leveraged in other ways. Check out these 3 Additional Income Streams for Course Entrepreneurs.

15. Improve your course quality

Last, but far from least, keep in mind that the easiest customer to get is one that you already have. Spend a little time reviewing your courses and make sure you are confident that you are really delivering the goods – i.e., creating the highest value outcomes you possibly can. See Adult Learning 101 – Delivering the Goods and The Secret to Killer Education Products? for additional thoughts.

Stay tuned for more, and share any experience you have with the above or additional ones you have to offer in the comments.

Jeff

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