The demand for online courses amongst different audiences has persisted. But it has particularly increased during the existing pandemic as people are mostly restricted to home and pay attention to learning skills online. Even many industry experts have started sharing their expertise through online courses. However, to take advantage of the growing demand for online courses, you must design and make them profitable. If you are interested in sharing knowledge with millions of people, this post is a must-read for you. Designhill conducted a workshop where Jimmy Naraine has shared a step by step guide on how to create an online course. Have a look!
Online courses are today an effective medium to learn something valuable right from the luxury of sitting at home. Millions of students of all ages have been enrolled in these courses across the globe. A distinctive feature of online courses is that they have a global audience. This means that people from across the world can access these courses to learn.
You can use your expertise in a subject to start teaching interested people from across the globe. If your course is exciting and useful, many thousands of students would like to enroll themselves with you. That is surely a successful business to run for many years to come.
However, your online courses must grab your audience’s attention immediately and should impart knowledge in a stress-free manner. To help you create profitable courses, Designhill conducted a workshop on the topic – Create a Profitable Online Course – Why, When, And How. The marketplace invited online course expert Jimmy Naraine to share his experience. The workshop was conducted on 4th December 2020.
During the workshop, the attendees learned about the ways to get started with online course creation and how to leverage the courses. They also accessed the core strategies to create high-end courses within a budget.
Jimmy Naraine has taught over 200,000 people through his online courses. He has worked with global companies such as Goldman Sachs and explored 76 countries while publishing his views in leading publications such as Forbes, Entrepreneur, and Business Insider. Jimmy runs a digital agency that helps create world-class courses.
Key Attractions During The Workshop:
- What’s the best way to get started with course creation?
- How to get “unstuck” from the perpetual draft mode?
- How to leverage your courses to positively impact your professional life?
- How to create content people actually feel good paying for?
- Strategies to create a world-class course on any budget
In this post, we have shared both the recorded video of the workshop and written transcript in the form of questions and answers where Jimmy has shared all the key points to keep in mind while creating an online course.
Here Is The Video Of The Workshop With Jimmy Naraine
Read The Following Workshop Transcript On How You Should Proceed To Create A Profitable Online Course
Know Why Should You Start An Online Course
Jimmy Naraine: If you haven’t defined why you need to start an online course, it will be difficult for you to get motivated. And also, the reasons you build the course will impact the type of course that you will build. This is very important. And first of all, I want you to think about some of the benefits that you could get from building a course just think for yourself, what could be the benefits apart from making money.
Create Your Legacy
Jimmy Naraine: I want to start with a legacy. And this is a bit counterintuitive because most people focus on money. We live in this world where you have a choice to leave your legacy. If something happens to you have a choice to leave something behind you, whether it’s a book or an online course.
When you think about online courses, do not just think of them in terms of building a course to make money. But think about the legacy that you will create.
Leave A Global Impact
Secondly, it is about your global impact. It is tremendous to see how many people you can impact from all over the world. Currently, I am teaching over 200,000 students. Now, those people come from more than 190 countries, almost every single country on the planet Earth. And it’s incredible.
The moment you get your first review and testimonial from someone from across the globe, it feels amazing. And I guarantee that when you build your course, your map will look similar because you will get people from all over the world. You will have a global impact. Another thing is passive income. I have to mention this because it’s something that many people think about. And I do not blame you because it’s nice to make money online.
Scale Up Your Impact
When you teach courses online, you essentially scale your impact, rather than trading your time for money. For example, as a designer, rather than just working for someone, you exchange your time for money directly. You can create a product that makes you money while you are sleeping. Still, you can work in a regular job or business. It is so nice to have that passive income. And you can take that money and do whatever you want with it. So this is a huge benefit.
Create Branding Effect
What people do not consider is the branding effect. Think about it. Why do I speak on so many different stages? Why can I do all of those things? If you follow me on Instagram, for example, then you will see I speak on various stages. I do consult for big companies and do lots of different things.
One of the reasons is branding. I talk to people and I meet people at conferences. When they Google my name and they see me teaching so many people, this gives credibility. The trick is you can have a tool because whatever niche you are in, you build an amazing course. If somebody wants to work with you, they will Google your name, they will find that course. And you do not need hundreds of 1000s of students, you could have only 100 students.
Get Good Reviews
If you have excellent reviews and well-done videos, people will see this. They think that he or she had what it takes to build it. That’s important. So, it’s such a great credibility tool. And if you have a product you want to sell or service, it’s going to help you.
As a freelancer you want to charge higher fees, maybe now you make $10 per hour, and you want to make $50. Well, if you have an online course, a blog, a book, etc, it will help you to charge more. It is going to help you get more clients because more people will see your content. For those of you who want to speak at different stages to online events as well, it is going to help you. So, you must consider those benefits of starting your online course.
Here is this poll that says 25% of people never thought about creating a horizontal. 50% of people say they want to build a course but have no experience. Only 25% of people say they are in the process of building a course. When you look at the results of the poll, most of you haven’t done this yet.
Know What Is Holding You Back
Jimmy Naraine: I bet that there is a reason for it. It could be either fear or complexity, maybe you feel like it’s too difficult and too complicated. Maybe you feel like I do not have enough time and it must take a lot of time. Or, maybe you feel like if you build a course, some people will tell you are not good enough. You shouldn’t be doing this, and you have this imposter syndrome. Whatever it is, I want you to think about it.
Think about what is holding you back. And what is still holding you back as you think of building a course. Find out those limiting beliefs that are holding you back because self-awareness is key. And what is holding you back, it’s going to be much easier for you to take that. You can break it and release your course, this is super important.
Realize That It Is Your Fear
You have to realize this is fear. This is how you often feel. And what you realize is that very often some of those worst-case scenarios that we picture will never happen. Many of them can be prevented. Let me give you some examples to make it super clear.
Let’s say that you are afraid that your course will not be good enough. Maybe you are afraid that people look at it and say, this is not as good as it could be. Well, you can prevent it by focusing on building amazing content. And before you release it to the public, you can get a couple of people to take it first for free. They will give you feedback, then you improve and release it.
Don’t Fear Bad Reviews
If you are afraid of bad reviews, what you have to do is make sure that the course is great. But, also you recruit people from your circle, family members, friends, and business partners. You tell them to listen and that you are building this course. I am putting everything I can into it. And I would like to give you a free copy. But I would appreciate it if you could leave me really honest feedback. The five-star review would be appreciated.
If you do that, you will get some five-star reviews initially. Suddenly, that fear of your course not performing well is gone. If you are afraid that everyone will see that you are not selling a lot of copies, you do not have to worry about them because and I am going to tell you later when we talk about platforms.
If you publish the course by yourself, nobody will see how many copies you sold. If you publish it on platforms like Udemy, well, you can release some free coupons. You can get those initial students on board. What I am saying here is whatever fear you are experiencing, it doesn’t matter. This is because when you look deeper into your you realize, it is either not as scary, or you can prevent it from happening.
Now, I want to talk to you about what being an expert means. Many people have this idea that they can not teach online because they are not the biggest experts in the world. They feel if the expert was the best in the world, he or she could do it but because I am not, I probably shouldn’t be building a course.
It Is About Being Relatable
But, you need to realize that you do not have to be the best to do the course. You need to know that you just have to know more than your target audience. Also, you should have passion for what you are teaching from a certain angle that makes you different. it’s not about being the best, it’s about being relatable.
For example, if you want to lose weight, would you rather be trained by a bodybuilder? Or would you rather train with someone who managed to lose weight before? Well, probably somebody who lost weight before. This is because they can resonate with you. You resonate with them, and that they know the process. You need to understand that you do not have to be the best in the world.
No Need To Be An Expert On Everything
In the movie, Catch Me If You Can, with Leo DiCaprio, there’s a scene where he was pretending he wasn’t in high school. He was pretending to be a teacher for six months. And then at the end of the movie, the FBI agents ask him, how could you teach this for six months, you are just a student, you are not even a teacher.
He said I didn’t have to know everything. I just have to be one chapter ahead of everyone else. And that’s it, you have to be one chapter ahead. You do not have to be the best in the world, you have to be one chapter ahead. If you are afraid, there are five minutes about fear. I hope you realize all of those fears. Forget that, just keep moving forward and make your dreams a reality, build a course.
When To Build Your Online Course?
Jimmy Naraine: Now you want to know when to start building your online course. This will be super simple and super short. Most of us feel like the yellow traffic light. On the one hand, we do not feel ready to publish yet. The light is not green yet. But it is also not fully red, which is because we want to publish but we also paralyze.
Avoid Analyzing Too Much
So, you are stuck in between, maybe you started drafting some content, but never created it. You never published, you are stuck and you feel like you are doing something but you are not doing anything. Instead, I recommend that if you do this, you’ll feel the paralysis. Too much analysis always leads to paralysis.
Publish It Right Away
Instead, you should publish the course away. I am going to tell you why. And by the way, this is a $350 million billion dollar industry by 2025. This can change due to corona and this could be even bigger. And it’s up to you to jump on board. But this industry is going to grow like crazy. So I recommend that you publish the course as soon as possible. Start the process ASAP. This session should be a wake-up call for you that now is the time to get started creating your course.
Build Networking Machinery
Now the second-best time to publish the course is to start the pre-launch marketing away. Even when you do not have a course yet, you should start building the marketing machinery. You should set up your social media pages and create content that is relevant to the course you want to build. Just start gaining followers and you should connect and engage with your audience.
Make sure that you build your mailing list. You should set up the email autoresponder. Ensure that you give people something away for free to get their emails. When you publish your course, you have people who want to buy it. So, now we have those two sections covered.
How To Create An Online Course?
Get Started With Platforms
Jimmy Naraine: When it comes to creating an online course, you should start with platforms. A lot of people get very confused about different platforms. I know there are hundreds of platforms. But, I am going to make it extremely simple for you. We have marketplace platforms. And we have those other platforms that give you more control. Marketplace platforms are essentially platforms that already have students. Udemy and Skillshare are examples.
What it means is that they have an existing student base. And when you publish your course there, some of those students may end up buying your course. For example, Udemy has more than 50 million people on board. Skillshare has about a million. If you publish your course on one of those platforms, you do not need to have an audience. You do not need to have social media.
Such Platforms Will Promote Your Course
If your course is good, they will promote it and many people will see your course. Does that mean you will make a lot of money away? Maybe not. It all depends on many factors. But the point is, you will be able to get your content in front of all of those people.
There is not a big problem with those platforms but it is a problem for some people. You do not have so much control because even though you can set your own price Udemy and Kill assured they will discount your courses. You could set the price to $50. And they will still sell it for $10 to $15. And, this is how it works. It’s more like a Volume platform. Also, you cannot get direct access to email addresses. But again, you do not need to have an audience and you can just publish there.
Choose Platforms That Allow You To Control
On the flip side, you have those other platforms where you have more control. Examples are that of Thinkific, Teachable, Kajabi, and many more. They keep building new platforms. The difference is that the platforms with more control, allow you to set up your price. You make your discounts and access the email addresses of your students. Also, you can sell them whatever you want. But you cannot access any student base. Those platforms do not have a student base you can access.
It may be that you do not have a pre-existing audience, and you publish a course on Thinkific, or Teachable, or Kajabi. But you need to promote it yourself. That is not easy, but people know how to do it while some do not.
Jimmy Naraine: I want you to remember this a year from now. It’s like someone asking me which car should I buy? I could say, hey, I think you should buy a Ferrari. But maybe you cannot afford it. Maybe you have a big family. But then if I tell you to buy a big Toyota instead, for six people, you will say well, but I do not have a family, I just have a boyfriend or girlfriend, then I have a big budget.
Platforms For Audience
It all depends on your situation. If you already have an audience, a lot of traffic, email addresses, then you can produce content on Thinkific, Teachable, and Kajabi. Or, you can build your platform on your website. This is because you have an audience and people to sell to.
Platforms For No Audience
If you do not have an audience it is a no-brainer, go with Udemy Skillshare platforms. This makes it easy for yourself. You can publish, gain an audience, and you have learned from the process. And you can always later publish on other platforms. You could publish on a marketplace platform like Udemy. And then, you can build something bigger and publish it on Thinkific, for example. It’s always up to you.
Filming: It Is Easy And Affordable
Jimmy Naraine: Now, let us talk about filming. One of the biggest misconceptions people have is to fill the course you need to have a lot of money. Or, the misconception is that you need to have a lot of skills. Now the cool thing is that because this is the design field conference, I presume a lot of you have some type of technical skills. For those of you who know how to do it, and by the way, it is so easy nowadays to film and edit your stuff.
Get Free Editing Software
You can do it yourself as you just take a phone, buy a little tripod for $50 or even less. And that’s all you need. And then there’s free editing software that said you have a course you can go get some stuck music, add everything together. The only thing is it takes time. You have to do it. But if you do not have the money, do it yourself, no excuse.
Jimmy Naraine: I will tell the story of my father and brother in the slides. Because my brother and father. A few years ago, I went back to Poland. I am originally from Poland, and I brainwashed my family and I said, Listen, you should build a course a lot. My father has to be a medical doctor, then he works in it. He did a lot of things I said you should partner and you should build a course.
And they used iPhone four, one of those little iPhones, just iPhone four little microphones that are 20 to $30. me basic lamps, they film The best selling course. they could do it a few years ago, it’s possible for you Nowadays, there are those phones where you can film it. The depth of field and you have 4k and it’s crazy what you can do.
Do Value Exchange
But if you do not want to do it yourself, Well, you could do value exchange. For example, if you are a designer, you could find somebody who knows how to film and edit and you tell them to listen. If you need a logo, maybe a book cover, a basic website, etc. I will do it for you. And in exchange, you will help me to film and edit my course. If you are a coach, you can say Listen, I will give you some coaching sessions. But you will help me to film and edit. I could give you lots of examples.
Get Something In Return Using Your Skills
The point is you can use your skill and knowledge to get something in return. I said hybrid model there because you can connect both. You can, for example, film yourself and then you can outsource editing or vice versa. The main point here is that there should be no limitations. I do not care what your circumstances are. There is no excuse. There is no excuse for why you shouldn’t be able to film your course on any budget.
I share more on social media because I do not want to waste time sharing long stories. When I built my first course, I paid a movie crew and paid them I think for two hours of their time. And that was it. We started filming. At some point, they looked at me and said, we like the way you present, this makes a lot of sense. Maybe we should work together, they gave me my money back.
And we decided to work on a percentage basis. The deal was, they would film whatever I wanted to film for free. But they got a percentage of my profits. This only shows you that there are so many different things you could be doing. So by now, I hope the filming part is sorted. You get the fact that it’s super easy.
Choosing Your Topic
Choosing your topic is important. Now, in the beginning, I asked you what are your objectives and the benefits of building a course. This is important because the types of goals you have for building a course will contribute to which topic you choose.
For example, if you want to build a course primarily to brand yourself then you do not care that much about money. It may be that you are building a course that primarily focuses on showing why you aren’t the best at what you do. In case of focusing on making passive income streams, do a bit more research for market validation. You should see if your topic can sell.
I recommend you use the software, like for example, Udemy Insights. And even if you do not want to publish your content on Udemy, still use it as it’s for free. And because they have so many students, it will help you to determine what types of topics make the most money.
Competition Is Good For You
Jimmy Naraine: A lot of people ask me, what if there is a lot of competition? What should I do? And that doesn’t mean that I should produce a course if there is a lot of competition? The answer is no. If there is a lot of competition, it could be a good thing. This is because there’s a lot of demand for that topic.
You may want to make a course about being a great designer. Or, you may be designing your first logo or building a website. It may be that you want to create a yoga course. If you see a lot of competition that is a good thing. See what’s in there and ask yourself, how can you stand out? How are you different? What is your specific angle? How can you make it even better? Just be yourself and then create a course on that topic
Some people may say what if there is no competition? What if you want to build a course and there are almost no courses on the topic? And this can happen for different reasons. Maybe people do not want to learn about that topic. That could be the case. But in most cases, it’s only because nobody has produced an amazing course on that topic yet.
To give you an example, I built my first course, it’s called double your confidence and self-esteem. At that time, I tried to find different confidence courses out there. And I couldn’t find anything or maybe a couple of courses. They didn’t look very good. I didn’t have too many students. They had average ratings. And I thought to myself, is it possible that people do not want to be more confident? Now, I mean, that’s stupid. It doesn’t make any sense. Everybody wants to be more confident.
I realized an opportunity because this simply means that people want this. But nobody has created an amazing course about this topic. I produced my course. And then I produced another one. And again, I’ve been teaching over 200,000 people, and a lot of those people buy my confidence courses. People want them to become more confident.
Focus On Branding
If in doubt, focus on branding. We often get confused due to so many options. If you are confused, create a course that will help your brand. Ask yourself, what type, of course, can I produce that will build my brand. It doesn’t have to be very long. It could be just a one hour course. But build something that will help your brand. If you are in doubt and look later, you can do more and more courses.
Think Of Your Own Challenges
To figure out what type of topic you will teach is write down pain points and challenges you managed to overcome in your life. When in your life, you face a challenge that feels so difficult, but you managed to overcome it. And as you write those things down, you can start now you finish later. This will give you ideas, what types of courses you could build.
Maybe, you ended up getting accepted for all of those big-time jobs. Maybe, you nailed all those job interviews, and you realize you could build a course about getting a dream job. Or, maybe you are getting paid a lot of money to design logos. Well, you could build a course on that. Do this exercise and think about it. So now that we have that, let’s talk about the course structure.
Let’s talk about structure. How do you structure a course of your choice? Well, you have to divide your course into sections, this is important. Do not just dump 10 videos or 20 videos out there with no structure.
Take Them On A Journey
When people buy courses, they are not paying you for information. They are paying you for taking them on a journey. Information is cheap, it’s pretty much free.
People pay you to learn from you how to get from A to Z. And that’s why it is so important that you structure everything cleverly. Those idea clusters will serve as sections. Based on my experiences, I would say build between five to 10 videos in each section.
Create Promotional Video
Now promotional video, aka trailer is the most important video that you will produce in your course the most important video because the promotional video is the video people will see when they are deciding whether they want to take your course. And it never ceases to amaze me. How many people do not care about it? How can people simply say, promo video, I do not care?
It’s similar to publishing a book and not caring about the book cover. Even if a book is amazing, if its cover sucks, you cannot sell the book as nobody will pick it up. And that is why your promotional video is so important.
You need the introduction video to introduce yourself and tell them how to take the course. In this presentation today, I told you a few things about myself.
Thank You Video
And then at the end, you want to do the thankyou video. People just took your course and paid for it. You want to say thank you for taking this course.
Give Your Course Description
Then, you need a compelling description. After you create a description, you need to put yourself in the shoes of the person who will be buying your course. To write the description you want to make sure that you focus on the objectives of the person who is buying.
How To Create A Trailer?
So, now that we have that, I want to talk a little bit about the trailer part, the promotional video. I want to go a bit deeper into it. It is the video that sells your course. And this is about building profitable courses. If you want to sell more courses, you need to make an amazing trailer that will sell your course.
To create a trailer for your online course video, you must consider some fine points. You should find out some of the main ingredients to do the trailer?
Get The Hook Point
First, you need the hook point, also called the pain point. It means that when people watch your video, you need to hook them. You should make them feel like they can not stop watching your video. They should feel like they understand you and you understand them.
In my course about confidence. I start the video by saying, we have those moments when lack of confidence prevents you from taking important actions. You have to take that step but this fear, this weird feeling in your stomach is holding you back. And then if you paralyze them, and you feel so bad about yourself. Now, when I say this, I am sure you kind of resonate. Whoever you are, you say oh, I know this feeling. Now I hooked you. Now you want to listen.
Show Credibility And Vulnerability
You want to tell people why they should be listening to you and why you are credible. But at the same time, you want to add some vulnerability. And this is a big war 10 some people do not know what that means. Vulnerability means that you are showing the people the weakness and not just the strength. In this way, you are making yourself more human.
An example of it is the way I add credibility when I build my trailers. I tell people how many students I teach and how many stages I present. So, I tell people that I used to work for companies like Goldman Sachs and share those things. I was featured in Forbes entrepreneur, all of those magazines, I shared this.
But if I only share Doc, people may think that I am showing off. That is why I add vulnerability where I say but I wasn’t always this person. I grew up in Poland and have limiting beliefs. I spoke only Polish, which I was learning English by myself with a terrible accent and I had no money. When people hear that it is all a true story, and sometimes I show pictures. People are thinking, oh, so this person did a lot. But he started at 00. Wow, I can relate.
Tell About Benefits
Then, you give them your benefit. You need to tell them exactly what they are going to get. Show them benefits such as you will learn X, Y, and Z.
Give Them A Call-to-Action (CTA)
After showing your benefits, you give them the call to action. You can not just assume that people will take your course. Instead, tell them to go ahead and take this course now. You have nothing to lose, begin your transformation. Take the course now, You have to tell that thing to people.
Give Them A Money-Back Guarantee
And lastly, give people a money-back guarantee. This is important. Because this is counterintuitive. Many people think that if they provide a money-back guarantee, everybody will want their money back. It doesn’t work like that. I give a money-back guarantee for all of my courses. And one, maybe 2% of people want their money back. Most people do not want their money. Because if people are happy with your content, they are happy to pay you.
Most importantly, if you mention your money-back guarantee in the promo video, people are more likely to buy your course. This is because they feel like there is no risk. They buy your course then they love it. And they never want their money back. That’s how it works.
Pay Attention To Positioning
While making your promo video, know how to position your video. This means you need to define your customer avatar. You should also find a way to do it before you even build your content.
Know Who Is Your Customer
Before you even build content itself and you have your topic already, figure out who is buying your course. And this is important to get. It’s better to be narrow than to be broad.
For example, if you want to teach yoga, you can just say I will teach yoga to everyone in the world. If you do it, you will build something that will not be compelling to anybody. People say ah, but it is not amazing. Now, instead, you need to be very specific. Maybe you want to teach yoga to single mums. Or, maybe you want to teach yoga to busy intrapreneurs. But you have to be specific.
And when you define that customer avatar, find people in your circle who are just like that, and talk to them. Ask them if you want to learn about this topic. What are some of the questions that come up? What are your pain points? What are your challenges? Ask them all of those things and then use those questions to build your content. This is powerful.
Now that you are going to get into content creation, have your customer avatar. Then, start creating your content. And by the way, content has different ingredients. I recommend that you mix different things. You should mix knowledge, personal experiences, and case studies referencing different resources.
Give Action Steps
But action steps and tools are very important. I do not just tell you in a boring presentation, you have to do this and that. I give you something very tangible. And I tell you exactly how to do it and when to do it. And this is important, You got to tell people, this is exactly what you have to do.
Because if you just share your knowledge, then you do not have that much credibility, it’s just you. If you only share case studies and references, then it is not your course. It is just you talking about other people’s ideas. When you blend everything. That’s how you create the best selling course.
Write Down Many Topics
Jimmy Naraine: I recommend you write down the name of the topic of your online course. You should write about the subject you want to teach. Jot down every single thing that you could teach about that topic. Write down as many things as possible, then go for a walk, relax. Then, look at it, and keep writing as many things as possible. And then, write positive notes. Then write each little topic that you just created on each note.
You may end up with 20 to 25, or maybe only 15 topics but you will have a lot of those little knots. And then put everything on the floor, you stand up. You imagine that you have to give a workshop in front of a live audience. Explain something of the topic to someone and you try to rearrange them. The structure makes sense. And this is powerful.
If you just try to write down your course curriculum in a notepad, it’s going to be very difficult. You’ll keep making mistakes and everything will be confusing. If you use those little pieces of paper, you can rearrange things. Eventually, you will have the draft that you can use, though it will not be perfect. And it doesn’t have to be perfect. You can always make it better later. Do not allow perfection to kill your content. Once you have the draft outline, start building content.
Make Pajama Draft
Pajama draft is something powerful. And the way it works is once you have those content pieces turned into a section work on separate videos. You should ask yourself, what topics should I cover in every single video. Then, you create the pajama draft.
And what it means is that you take your phone, put it on a fridge or in front of you. And you can dress up in pajamas, you can wear a weird hat, you can even take off your T-shirt. You want to create the types of videos that you would never publish as you want to have some fun with them. What is going to happen is when you start filming videos without a T-shirt, or weird hat, that you want to be able to publish those videos. And this will relax you because your brain will now say, oh, this is just for fun.
And then take the notepad, your draft, and start filming from the first video till the last. Try to film every single video. If you get stuck, you just open your notepad, look at your notes, and keep going. But the point is by the end of the pajama draft, you want to have every single video filmed. I hope you will do this because this is probably the most powerful thing to do here.
When you do this, you show it to yourself that you can film the entire course from the beginning to the end. And because it is done in Pyjamas or some weird costume, you will not publish it. But it doesn’t matter. Because now when you have to be in front of a real camera, you are dressed up nicely. You have a nice background, and you will be less stressed.
Overcome The Fear Of Presentation
Now just a few things about overcoming the fear of presenting. I know as I am talking about what some of you may be thinking, now I strike that dissipate what my audience is thinking, This is something that I also recommend. Try to anticipate what your audience is thinking. Nobody knows how you feel. You may feel your heart beating fast, you may be sweating, you may be stressed, and realize that people will not know how you feel. You may feel stressed, but it doesn’t matter. When you record your videos, people will not know.
Focus On Value And Not Yourself
Also, nobody relates to perfection. If you made a perfect presentation, well, you’re not a human. It has to be imperfect. And also always focus on the value you give to people not just about yourself. You will feel more confident now. Also, sometimes people tell me oh, what if people hate my content, but this will not happen. Because people who want to see your content will see it.
Remember, if someone has taken your course, it’s because they enjoyed your landing page. They liked your trailer, it means that they like you. They saw it, they like what they see and they took your course. You do not need to worry that people will not like you.
And finally, know that cameras are your friend. Many people are scared of the camera. I have so many stories I could share how otherwise confident CEOs of big companies will tell me about their companies and what they do. The moment I turn on the camera, they crumble, they get stressed out. When you film a course, and something doesn’t work, you get stressed out, whatever happens, you can delete or edit the video. The control is yours.
Decide On The Length Of The Course
Jimmy Naraine: Finally, one point I want to make about is deciding on the length of the course. I do not know if I should build a short course or a long course. Maybe I should post it on Udemy or somewhere else, you may still be confused. I want to tell you about the strategy that will work for most of you.
Now, first of all, you may be someone who has a massive following, a lot of people on your mailing list, lots of Instagram followers and have your audience already built. Then probably this is not for you. But If you do not know what to do, start small. But start away, instead of thinking of building this 10-hour course. You will get confused. You will get stressed out, you will get past instead of trying to go big away. Of course, set big goals for the future. But for now, start and decide.
Give It Away Free
You can start with the 60 minutes course or 45 minutes course, build something small and give it away for free. Look at Designhill we are doing this. We are doing this conference. This conference is free. But Designhill is smart because they understand it’s a win-win On the one hand for you guys watching this free value. You are happy you are getting this for free. But this also builds their brand. Because everyone is like oh Designhill I like them they give away things for free.
For me, I am here and doing this for free. But also if I give value I believe in karma, the karma will come back so free doesn’t mean bad. And I believe if you are confused, build a short product for 45 to 60 minutes, make it amazing. Make it so good that people want to pay you but give it away for free. Put it on Udemy, on Skillshare but just give it away.
Put The Course On Social Media
Put it on social media as well. Try to gain some of those social media followers, put it on YouTube. Whenever you can try to collect email addresses, for example, you can do a playlist on YouTube. And in the description box, you can say, if you want more of this type of content, sign up to my email list. You collect those email addresses and build social media following. If you do that, you get clients on Udemy, get new people joining in, who normally wouldn’t even know who you are. Those people wouldn’t even know that you exist.
Eventually, when you want to publish a bigger course, you want to put it down on Thinkific, Teachable, and Kajabi. Maybe you want to sell for $200? Well, at least now you have so much more experience than now when you’re building a proper course, you know what you have to do.
Designhill: How those who are starting new can build credibility?
Figure Out Your Audience
Jimmy Naraine: I understand when you are getting started, sometimes there is nothing that you can use as a credibility factor. It can be tricky, but this is also an illusion because there is always something you can use. As you are building the content, you can enroll some better students. What it means is that you do something about positioning, and finding your target audience. You need to figure out who are those people that I want to teach.
Offer Free Courses For Testimonials
Then, find people like this in your circle. Tell them that you are building this course, I am happy to do something that they would normally charge for. But I am going to do it for you for free. I would like to give you a transformation session, or maybe a series of free sessions, we will do it for free. And I am going to help you with your challenge.
But what I expect is that you will give me a testimony. And this is one way to go about it. Because nowadays, what people care more about than just numbers is a real transformation and authenticity. You may have no numbers yet. But everything starts with zero. Well, sometimes people say to Tim Ferriss, oh, it’s easy for you to have a big podcast. And he says, well, people forget that when I started, nobody knew who I was. You have to start somewhere.
But when you manage to help a bunch of people, then they will give you some testimonials. And then you can use those stories of people that you manage to help to persuade others to join your course. This is very powerful.
Use Social Media
There is a reason I mentioned building a free course. You publish it on a platform like Udemy, then you take those videos and you publish it on social media. Sure, you may not get huge numbers at the beginning, but you will get people on board. If you do it properly, you will get people who watch your content. And then, it’s just about collecting those reviews and testimonials.
When you publish another product, you can say, by the way, this is what people say about some of my other content. And then you put those quotes and you show what people say about you. In no time you will build credibility.
See If You Already Have Credibility
Look for credibility factors in areas that you didn’t consider before. Often when I talk to people, they say, it’s easy for you. But for me, it’s difficult. I do not have what you have. I do not have any credibility. And then I ask them, well, how long you have been doing what you are doing? They say, maybe 10 years. That’s credibility. Why don’t you put it in there? A person with 10 years of experience in this field? Great.
How many clients did you serve? For example, if you’re a freelancer, how many clients did you serve on Upwork or Designhill, or any other platform, even Fiverr? And you just charge five bucks, how many kids do you have? Oh, you say a couple of 100. Can you check how many? Yeah, 450? Well, you can put it in your bio, you serve 450 clients.
What I am saying is that very often, we assume that we do not have credibility, but we do not look deep enough. We do not spend any time figuring out what credibility we have. I can guarantee you that you will figure something out. If you blend those two things, you will get results, you will build that social proof. 1:05:16
Designhill: How do we overcome the general assumption that everything should be free online?
Jimmy Naraine: I do not believe everything should be free. This is scientifically proven that when people pay for something, they appreciate it more. But I feel like a lot of people get it wrong. And they feel like well, I have a lot of knowledge. People should just pay me. But this is not how real life works. And if someone does not know you, if you haven’t proven yourself, it’s tricky to get paid. Yes, you could do it.
However, for the vast majority of people, it is going to be difficult. That is why often it makes a lot of sense to give away something for free first. When you do that, it’s almost like you people get to test drive, what you have to offer.
Give Free Is Marketing
Before the coronavirus pandemic, you used to go to the supermarket, and someone walked up to you with the tray and they say we have those new smoothies. Would you like to try and then you try and you didn’t plan to buy anything, but they’re like, wow, this is good? And then they say, by the way, we have a special offer. If you buy one and get the second one free. Guess what happens? You buy it, then you like it, then you buy some more. Now, this would never happen, if they didn’t give it to you for free.
Another example could be a restaurant. I go to a restaurant and as I sit down, I make my order, and then they bring some appetizers. When I say, oh, excuse me, just to make sure everything’s fine, we didn’t order any appetizers. And then the waiter says, what, sir, It was great talking to you. Sir, this is on the house, you do not need to pay for this. What will happen?
I am not going to pay for this but I am going to leave a big tip. I mean, that’s what was going to happen. Not only I will leave a big tip, but I will also leave an amazing review. And I will come back and recommend my friends. Yes, maybe they end up spending $5 on appetizers for me for free. But they end up making hundreds of dollars in the next few weeks because I just keep coming back.
Let People Know Your Usefulness For Them
Jimmy Naraine: I think people need to understand that. It’s not about just giving things for free or just charging. More than that it is about creating this dance in between charging and not charging. You allow people to see how good and authentic you are at what you do. That will rationalize in their heads, why they should pay you for your content.
When I do consult for companies and entrepreneurs, some people could say I charge a lot, I do charge a lot. My rates are very high. But I also deliver a lot of value. A company says we need someone like you to comment to train our team. Then, rather than just saying yes, this is the price and set a jump on the first call to try to figure out what exactly they need.
And I tried to already give them something, I am not getting paid anything. But I do not need to do it. I am trying to give them something because no one does that. And, when they see that I am giving them a lot of value, they say we want to do it with you. You solve this, we want to do it because we know that you are good at what you do. And many people say no, you shouldn’t do it.
Prepare For Long Term Results
But they do not realize that it’s always about the long game. It’s always about the long term result. Sometimes people go a bit too far given everything away for free. I think that’s going a bit too far. I need to have something that you can monetize. But because I did that, I see most people watching this do not have experience building courses. If you do not have the experience, any audience, it is hard to get started and charge a lot away. You got to try different avenues.
You could build that free course. But also at the same time, you could be developing something bigger for a free course, maybe 45 minutes long that you give away for free. But at the same time, you build an extra one hour of content. And you publish all of that as a paid course.
Now here’s what’s happening and pay attention. This is important. People who take your free course, many of them will think, wow, this is good. I want more of this, and I am willing to pay for it.
They Pay For A Valuable Content
But now they are willing to pay because they know that the content is valuable. Now, people who see your landing page for the paid course, who are not ready to pay you, they’re thinking, this course looks good. But I do not want to pay yet. I am not sure if this is good enough.
Now they see that you also have something shorter, that’s free. They decide to give this shorter course a shot, see what it’s all about. They take your shorter, free course. And they realize, wow, this person is good. Maybe I should pay for the bigger course. So, you kind of combine the best of both worlds.
So, follow these fine points to make your online course useful and interesting to your global audience. Pay heed to each strategy and revisit your course very often to make timely corrections.
But do not ignore your logo of online course business. You will also need business cards and other promotional materials that must be attractive and impressive.
To create your visual identities like a logo design, outsource its design work to Designhill, the leading marketplace. You can get dozens of new design ideas from as many talented designers from around the world.
So, get started by launching your design contest to give your online course business a new identity.
An online course is a convenient way to learn a lot about something without going out. Expert Jimmy Naraine advice to first pinpoint your audience and create a course just for that particular set of students. Then, go through the entire process of choosing the topic and know when is the best time to launch the course. Consider different platforms for these courses. Filming part of creating the courses also is important.