Memberium Development Advice: Sell Your Online Course BEFORE You Build It
As a Memberium Developer, I run into a lot of business owners that are starting to build their online course. I typically see them start off really excited. That get inspired and they are SO tempted to start building their online course immediately. That run with it following their gut and personal inspiration.
BIG MISTAKE. DON’T FALL INTO THAT TEMPTATION.
These are people that are expert in their field. They know their subject matter really well. They know how to solve their customer’s problem. They often time fail in a bad way. The issue is they know their material well, but they do not understand their customer’s problem intimately and the emotional state they’re in as they look for the solution to their problem.
This happens to all of us as subject matter experts. The more you know, the bigger this problem gets.
When you know your content really, really well, you built a blind spot to your customer’s personal situation. It’s been a very long time since you were a notice in your area of knowledge.
This Memberium developer calls this, “The Contamination Problem.” Our own knowledge as the expert stands contaminates us andkeeps us from seeing what we do like our customers do.
If you don’t listen to anything else I recommend, please listen to this advice. I’ve seen way too many people build these really nice courses that no one buys. Let me me go over three reasons why this selling first approach is the way to go.
Memberium Developer Insight #1 – You Have to Get What Your Customer Is “Feeling”
Step one when I coach new course builders is to get them on calls with potential customers asking them some specific questions. We want to explore their biggest challenges, concerns, and frustrations when it comes to the topic you cover. They ask these people eight questions and their responses get everything you need for building your sales pages.
The responses can be revealing. What they tell you is gold. If they said it, it’s going to be something you want in your sales messages.
We also want to ask them how much they would pay for what you sell and what course learning formats work best for them. More than once we have found that customers would pay more for the product or service than the business owners were planning to charge.
Remember this. Ask your customers what they want and use what they tell you to sell to others.
Memberium Developer Insight #2 – Look for the Diamonds You Didn’t Expect to Find
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve worked with a customer they have that what their customers want is NOTHING like what they originally wanted to offer.
This approach relies on the assumption that building a straightforward first version of your course is easy. What’s challenging is selling it. So the focus of your efforts should be on selling the course with the building of the course coming second. Once you get your course selling, you can focus on making it better. The point then is you know you have a winner so you can confidently proceed to invest in the course knowing it will sell.
Memberium Developer Insight #3 – Build Based on What You Learn Along the Way
Along with these other two reasons, I want to mention that as you teach, you will learn more and more. Don’t think of your online course as something that is finished. Think of it as a solution in motion. It will start off good enough and then get better and better.
Build your online course in waves. I recommend your first version be a group teaching on Zoom with several customers participating and asking you questions. Record those meetings. The recordings can be version two of your course. The third version can take it a step forward. You can re-record the same lessons as a presentation with a screen share video covering what you had in version one. Include answers you gave your version one student in your presentation.
If your course is selling, then your focus on improving the course in waves works well. You will know what was missing based on what people told you. You can modify presentation materials so areas the were unclear or confusing to people, based on what they actually tell you, can be improved.
This is the better way to build your online course.