Gone are the days when you could simply promise prospects that you’re worth investing in. Instead, you have to prove it! And, there is no better way to establish your expertise and authority than by creating an online course to sell.
We invited Ian Anderson Gray to this week’s Social Media News Live to give us a crash course on creating online courses for profit!
We’ll also chat about the payout YouTube is offering podcasters willing to expand to video and explore how YouTube Shorts is measuring up to TikTok.
[00:00:00] Jeff Sieh: Welcome to Social Media News Live I’m Jeff Sieh and your not.
[00:00:04] Grace Duffy: And I’m Grace Duffy. And this is the show that keeps you up to date on the world of social media.
[00:00:10] Jeff Sieh: So you know what God are the days when you can simply promise prospects that you’re worth investing in, you have to prove it. And there’s no better way to establish your expertise and authority than by creating an online course to sell.
[00:00:24] And we’ve invited our friend, Ian Anderson, gray to the show today to talk about the new course he is launching and walk us through the steps that he took to create it. We’re also going to talk about how to vet online courses and see which one is right for you. And we’ll get you the results you want and actually teach you something.
[00:00:41] Ian, how are you doing today? My friend excited that you can be here.
[00:00:46] Ian Anderson Gray: I’m doing really well. I’m yeah. Great to hang out with you guys. It’s always a pleasure. And looking forward to chatting to you today, my courses and
[00:00:55] Jeff Sieh: Ian is a long time a friend of the show. He’s also been a guest before, but if you don’t know who Ian Anderson gray is, you really should.
[00:01:01] He is the founder of the confident live marketing academy and is the host of the confident live marketing podcast. He helps entrepreneurs to level up their impact authority and profits by using live video confidently. He is the founder of seriously social, a blog post, just focused on live video and social media tools.
[00:01:21] He’s an international speaker trainer, teacher, and consultant. He is a, has a passion for making the technobabble of live video and social media marketing, easy understand. He really does a great job with this, Ian, thank you so much.
[00:01:35] Ian Anderson Gray: It’s my pleasure. It’s funny that a buyer, cause you say international speaker, but who’s been an international speaker in the last couple of years.
[00:01:44] Jeff Sieh: You
[00:01:45] Grace Duffy: have been, you are an international speaker.
[00:01:48] Ian Anderson Gray: No, I know it just not been doing any of the traveling, but thankfully I’m going to be in Orlando this may and looking forward to seeing you Jeff there. So yeah. Yes,
[00:01:58] Jeff Sieh: I’ll be there as well. Gary Stockton says, he goes, you forgot a international man of mystery.
[00:02:05] He is a little bit of that. He’s an Austrian powers. He’s got the, the, I won’t make you say any of his lines, but anyway this is going to be a fun show, but I wanted to let you guys know that today’s show is brought to you by our friends over at Ecamm. You can find out more about them at socialmedianewslive.com/ecamm
[00:02:27] they just had a brand new release. I know Gary started than just downloaded it, but they have this, all this cool stuff. They got a virtual microphone. So you can use your mic set up and put it over onto zoom and have all your sound effects and all sorts of cool things. But so many cool features that have released in this new release.
[00:02:45] A 3.10, I believe is the release. But Ian, I know he’s an Ecamm user and I wanted to bring him up because he’s going to show off some of these cool transitions that they have done. So showcase some of those.
[00:02:58] Ian Anderson Gray: Yeah. So some of these are for the show that I have. And so you can do.
[00:03:05] And we can have that level kind of zoom effects. And then if you’re wanting a little bit of mystery in the middle of, things like that, thunder effects and by the way, I’m using my virtual, the virtual microphone now. So there’s all the sound from econ live being rooted into this. And yeah, you can do even things like tickers as well.
[00:03:25] So I don’t know whether this is going to appear on the screen. You might not be able to see this, but you can do all that kind of stuff. You might not to see
[00:03:32] Jeff Sieh: that. See if you’re dragging. Okay. So there it is. You want to work. It’s not working very cool.
[00:03:36] Ian Anderson Gray: So we’re little scrolly things as well. I don’t have something I’ve been working with are these little overlays.
[00:03:42] They’ve got different colored overlays, so I can put red on my that I can do yellow. And then on top of that, I can then say puts some text. Is this going to work? It might not work. Let me go. So you can do it. Yeah. There’s lots of cool things you can do.
[00:03:58] Jeff Sieh: They got countdown timers, and you have an intermission, one play your intermission little thing that you did that.
[00:04:01] Oh yeah.
[00:04:02] Ian Anderson Gray: Yeah. I was doing this the other day, cause I was like halfway through my show. There was a possibility I was going to get delivery. So I had, so I’ll have that.
[00:04:13] Jeff Sieh: That’s great. That’s really cool. So make sure you guys go check out. If you’re not an Ecamm user, if you use a Mac, it’s a kind of a no-brainer if you’re going live or doing zoom or anything like that it, they’ve got this new release it’s so stinking. Cool. socialmedianewslive.com/ecamm Go and check them out.
[00:04:34] All right. All right. So we talked about ETM. They’re amazing. They do awesome stuff, but we want to talk about today courses. Grace talked to us about creating online courses. Have you created a course by the way, Grace? I don’t know if you have, did you do in the black, in the blog.
[00:04:50] Grace Duffy: I know, not on the blogging days, but this is some, this is a journey that I am barking on.
[00:04:54] I will let you know that. So I, sometimes I invite people over to our show just for I need the information. I will tell you right now. I’m like, Hey Jeff, why don’t we do a show on courses? That would be like, yes, let’s do that. The topic of the hour today is creating online courses for profit.
[00:05:13] You’re not, a lot of people need to have an online course like that. Especially if you’re an entrepreneur, you are an expert in your industry, you’re a speaker or a thought leader. It is an essential part of your marketing toolbox as essential as having a website, a social media presence, a business card.
[00:05:31] Why? Because it sets up your authority within a space. Also creating an online course ranks pretty high on all of those listicles of ideas for passive income. But Ian, tell us the truth. Is there anything passive about creating an online course?
Is A Course Truly Passive Income?
[00:05:49] Ian Anderson Gray: I think there are very few things in the digital world.
[00:05:52] I think there are very few things that actually pass it. If you have to do some work and you can’t just publish it and then just wait for everyone to come and buy your courses. That might happen occasionally. And I’ll tell you a story about my experience, but over time, you’re going to have to update things you’re going to have to carry on with your marketing.
[00:06:11] So back in 2016, I read an article about how to go live to you or to Facebook live from your computer. And it was using the software called OBS studio, which was quite complicated. It was quite new. And a lot of people were finding the article really helpful, but they still struggled to actually use the software.
[00:06:31] And so I thought, oh, I’m going to have to create a course on time and knowing why, knowing me, I tend to over-complicate things and procrastinate, but we moved. We’re moving into. And that kind of gave me this, moving house like the following week. So I knew I only had one week to do this and I put these 12 short videos together, uploaded them onto my website, had a password protection, put PayPal on there.
[00:06:54] It was very mucked together. Really. And I had the experience of over the next kind of three or four months, I was getting pinged every day. It was really exciting. It was, I was getting selling about five or six of these every day and sold over a hundred in the first couple of months.
[00:07:13] And it felt like this is what passive income is, but then the sales went down and then I needed to think about my second course. And the second course basically was a year later. Didn’t do very well at all. And I probably said, 10. And I learned a lot from an experience because I think it’s down to selling a course is down to so many more things than what you think.
[00:07:42] It’s down to timing. It’s down to your expertise. It’s down to how you market the course it’s dancer, do people really see a need and do they know you? Do you have an audience? If you have all of those things in place, then it can be partly passive, but you’ll have to continue continually market it because at some point people will stop hearing about it or there’ll be another course out there.
[00:08:06] And yes I hate to say it, but there is it’s not as passive as people think is.
[00:08:13] Jeff Sieh: So we got a great question here. Somebody in one of our groups says, and then they can also lead to consulting. I remember when you, I think when you put that course out or maybe a different one, he in, and I was in your group that where you had people who had bought the course and talk about it.
[00:08:29] And there was people like Michael. And, some other big name people were like, cause they wanted to figure this out. And it can also talk a little bit about not just, yeah, it’s passive income. You’ll get some sales from the courses, but it’s also a way to upsell some of your services and or things like that.
[00:08:47] So talk about that a little bit.
A Course Is Just One Stage In A Customer Journey
[00:08:48] Ian Anderson Gray: Absolutely. And I say, this is the kind of knowing thing. I’m not one of these people that looks back with regret. I I felt went back then. I would have done things so much more differently, so yeah. People like Michael Hyatt will find the course and that would be what could have happened from that is offering consultancy and then other courses as well.
[00:09:12] So you should never just have one course you should have. What’s the next stage in the customer journey once they’ve done that course, there are people that are starting with offering free courses. Why not offer a free course? And then at the end of the. You can offer. If you want to take things to the next level, I’ve got another course, that’s going to help you there.
[00:09:30] And then another course, and then you can sell people or get people into your membership community. And you can, then that is a lot more passive in the sense that you are getting a regular monthly income, except it’s not because you have to work. You have to continually nurture these people and help them along that along the way.
[00:09:51] And that’s the way it should be, because it is about relationships. It’s about our relationship with these people. And I think the courses these days that are doing really well are the cuff hybrid courses. And I’m sure we’ll come onto this, but it’s the courses where there’s a community as well, a community aspect to.
[00:10:11] Jeff Sieh: There’s some other comments someone in one of the groups said, I switched my online courses to a membership site with many courses. It’s a great passive income. So yeah. So they were doing what had talked about. They created courses and they bundled it together and then they made a membership site to that.
[00:10:25] And yeah, there’s that customer journey that you talked about, Ian, which is it’s super important. So let’s walk through the steps. We want to walk through the steps of creating a successful course in 2022. And I think things have changed back in the day if you, and I’m not knocking.
[00:10:43] Cause I think they’re really good. Like James Wedmore and Amy Porterfield, they were on the cusp of the online course creation stuff and they have great ideas and, things that they teach that are really good. But we’re not Amy Porterfield and , James Wedmore. The things of things have changed since they first launched and they grew their following and all that stuff.
[00:11:07] So things are a little bit different here in 2022. I still think courses are awesome and a great way, like you were saying create some income. The first of all, let’s talk about the list of possible courses. The topics are endless. So how did you pick a topic or how can you tell other people to pick a topic that will capture people’s attention and, find that high demand in the market?
How To Pick A Topic For An Online Course
[00:11:34] Ian Anderson Gray: I think with my BS calls, I was just there at the right time and I had this hunch. I it was, people were obviously hungry for answers on this. So I think you need to end your industry. You should be having your finger, putting your finger on the pulse and listening to what is new? What are people struggling with here?
[00:11:53] How can I help? Or maybe I can offer a different perspective. A lot of people are talking about this, but I feel they’re talking about it in a wrong way, or I feel that I can offer something different. So that’s important. It needs to be something that people are actually interested in. And people are wanting to find out more.
[00:12:14] You’re solving a problem and you can solve it hopefully quickly and not effortlessly, but you can make it easier for these people. So I think that’s the first thing that you need to do. And the second thing is you also need to have a good long look at yourself and think what is it that’s different about me?
[00:12:31] I can offer to my audience and to the people who are going to buy my course. And my situation, but plenty of other people talking about this, but I think I was there at the right time, but also I think I was able to get, make it super simple. And so I wasn’t selling a totally like mega advanced course.
[00:12:53] I was taught the teaching, something for marketers that was fairly simple and basic. So you need to think about your audience as well. And hopefully you have grown an audience that’s really important. You need to spend time growing your audience. So that’s going to be a lot easier for you to sell it and to spread the word, but you also need to know really, you need to know your audience and you need to know what is it, what is the problem that I consult?
[00:13:17] What is the subject matter that I can solve? And you need to do that research. And one thing that I would highly recommend that you do is actually interview your audience. And I’ve been doing this recently. I just booked a 15 minute zoom call where the previous client, and I just asked her loads of questions.
[00:13:35] What are, what’s the most important thing in your life and your value wise and your business, and what, how, where, what do you want to do with your business in the next year? And what are the technical issues that you struggle with in your business? And that really helps me to know the kind of courses and the kind of products that I can create.
[00:13:53] That’s going to be perfect for her and for the rest of my audience. So don’t just do it on a whim. I don’t just do it on something that excites you. Obviously that’s important. It’s good to be excited about something, but you need to do your research as well, so that you have you’re creating something that’s going to work and.
[00:14:14] It is why one of the reasons why my second course didn’t do quite so well, I had this other second course was on Wirecast, which is a pretty expensive live video tool. And I should have had looked at done the research because why, because there’s a very expensive course, so expensive product, and it just wasn’t the demand for it.
[00:14:33] And people were wanting a much less expensive solution. So do the research. And actually what I would recommend that you do before you create the course is actually create a landing page. Do the marketing, have a product put a waiting list form on there which is actually what or done with one of my courses it’s almost complete, but it’s not quite there.
[00:14:59] You don’t have to do all that work. You make sure that you have people that are willing to part where their cash for us before you create.
[00:15:08] Jeff Sieh: Yeah. And I’m bringing up that that of course you mentioned that you have a landing page for, if you gotta go guys go to iag.me/acceleratenow
[00:15:16] And we’re gonna talk about this a little bit late in the show, but since you mentioned it, I wanted to pull that up on, on screen. It’s iag.me/acceleratenow for you guys who are wanting to get on that list right away, like without be the first one. So there you go. So I wanted to ask in, okay, you talked about finding, that, that, that sweet spot where things land, where you know, that there’s people wanting that sort of information and what you’re good at, is there a way, or is there tools, Mark Schaefer talked about, looking for seams in the market and his book the competitive advantage, what, how do you find that stuff?
[00:15:57] Do you just go out and you mentioned surveying your audience, but even broader than that, do you do keyword research? How do you know. That one, that this is a good idea. And to how do I word it in a way that people will find it and I can even interview people about it?
How Do You Find Your Audience?
[00:16:18] Ian Anderson Gray: Yeah, I think w when it comes to the wording, I think interviewing people is really important.
[00:16:21] Use the language that your audience. Be using to understand what it is. So it is about a live video tool. They may not call it a live video tool. They might, I don’t know what they call it. They either do your audience might a Wiziwig machine or something. So the case, like that’s the language that you should use, but before you get to that stage yeah.
[00:16:43] Do doing that research. Mark’s book, that’s going to cut large, call them Mark Zuckerberg and Mark Schaefer’s very different. And I’d highly recommend that there are other tools you could use. Just generally to find out what people are asking on a particular subject. There’s answer.
[00:17:00] The public.com is a great free resource. So you’d put in there And if what you’re thinking the course could be about. And then within that, you can then find out what people are actually asking. There’s buzz. Sumo is a good tool as well, that you can find out information on that, get involved in Facebook groups and other communities Reddit or whatever it is and find out what people are interested in and excited about.
[00:17:28] And of course, ask and involved with communities with your audience will look at other people, your kind of competitors and seeing what they are looking at. You need to have your finger on the pulse. It’s so easy. I think to be not it just to be too comfortable. There’s a lot of dark moments in marketing about web 3.0, and I’ll have to admit I’ve been not wanting to go down that route because it’s.
[00:17:57] It’s new and scary, but actually that’s something I should be looking at and maybe I should be creating a course about it. Because it’s new and not that many people are talking about it. So lots of things to think about there, but you just need to find out, you need to have your finger on the pulse, find out what’s happening in your industry, in those communities, and listen to them and do talk to real people.
[00:18:20] Do your research, get people on the phone or on zoom, or just chat to them and find out.
[00:18:28] Grace Duffy: So Ian, talk to us about the actual course planning process, because surely we all have a topic. We have several topics that we would love and could talk endlessly about, and it can be overwhelming sometimes to organize all of your thoughts and stay focused.
[00:18:41] So what’s the best way when you’re creating this course and structure those modules and have a course plan. Assuming of course we don’t have a week to do it because we’re moving house so that you don’t have that added pressure of the time limit. But, it’s just, sometimes it’s just like you, you get this idea you go off on all these tangents and you’re like, it’s maybe it’s just me.
[00:19:02] Maybe I just have a hard time focusing on a single topic.
How Do I Structure An Online Course?
[00:19:05] Ian Anderson Gray: No, it’s not just you. In a way that was why the moving house thing was actually really useful. Cause it was that pressure I had to, I didn’t have the. I didn’t have the opportunity if that’s the wrong word, really, to procrastinate and over complicated, I only had a week to do it.
[00:19:22] And so that’s the first thing I would say. Don’t overcomplicate it, keep it simple. Remember the first course I sold was basically 12 YouTube videos on one page on my website, password protected with a YouTube button. It was like, not exactly, it wasn’t very slick and I wasn’t happy with it. It’s sold.
[00:19:41] So don’t, over-complicate it. And I think with the structure, what I would say is keep it simple. If it’s, if I’m a big believer in video courses. So keep in, but keep the videos really short two to three minutes, four minutes at the most. And so I break it up into intersections and I, I would suggest that you maybe break it up into five lessons and then within each lesson, you.
[00:20:09] Possibly three or four little modules videos as you go through. And at the end of it give people at the end of each section, sorry, give people resources. Don’t just do the videos, make it give people like tangible things that they can download. People love. If you have a, like a a resource that people can download, like a Google sheets or like a list of things.
[00:20:36] And it doesn’t have to be complicated. I paid a lot of money for a WordPress course. Many years ago, it was about a thousand dollars and it was over. Don’t over five weeks, but he gave us these emails that, email templates. And there were basically just text files, but they were golden.
[00:20:54] They were golden pieces of information. Also think about that as well, but the planning stage Gracie, say overthinking it or, thinking about it a lot is really important. So do structure, it, do talk with other people, get, maybe get a, as we say in the UK called a beta program or beta program, or if you are interested in your product, you could either give it to them for free or give them the goals at a much cheaper price.
[00:21:26] And you’re basically there. You’re getting. And they give you advice as you structure the course as well. So it doesn’t have to be perfect. It just needs to be structured in a way that’s going to be helpful.
[00:21:40] Jeff Sieh: So
[00:21:41] Grace Duffy: yeah, that publish is better than published is better than perfect.
[00:21:46] Ian Anderson Gray: Yes. Oh my goodness. Yeah.
Published Is Better Than Perfect
[00:21:48] Ian Anderson Gray: It’s so true. It’s so true. So yeah, and my courses have never been perfect. This is the other thing, like sometimes depending on your personality, I tend to overthink things. So the first course that I did, I think this is important to say, because if you’re like me and I think Jeff, you’re a bit like this too, and Grace, your problem, we tend to overthink things.
[00:22:10] And what happens is you sell this cool. And people are loving it. Like people loved my first cost, but I was waiting for somebody to come back and say, I want my money, but this is awful. You look, you don’t look professional and that, but I was waiting for that. And it never happened because actually people just wanted the information.
[00:22:31] It doesn’t matter how I looked in my video. It didn’t matter how slick it was. They were just interested in that information. Now having said that if you are selling a more expensive course, if you’re looking into the like $500, $1,000, even $2,000 course, then I think the quality does start to matter a lot more.
[00:22:52] But even then, if you are solving somebody’s problem, if you’re, if you are solving, somebody’s real struggle in their business and making a big impact people, honestly, they don’t care about that. Don’t care about all these flashy things that are going on. So don’t over.
[00:23:10] Jeff Sieh: So you talked about it a little bit, but one of the reasons people sign up, I think for today courses is the networking community they provide, back in the day we talked about it before.
[00:23:21] It’s I think you would sell information and you could put it up. It was almost like a webinar format. People would buy it and there you go. Now there’s Facebook groups, we talked about earlier, we got volley that we can go in and talk to a chat to the people. So a lot of people like these getting in with like-minded folks with similar goals and it makes sense that, students in your course are not only looking to interact with you, but with one another.
[00:23:47] And And then what, this is one of the reasons that I haven’t done a lot of courses, because that seemed like a lot of stuff to do. So like when you’re creating your online course, how much do you involve social elements? Building, learning communities and in cohort based learning, a couple of episodes ago we had Adrian Salsbury who from Ecamm who does the training and he does a cohort based training, which if you don’t know what that is, is that you come in together and you learn together.
[00:24:15] It’s like a weekly thing. It’s you’re going to the classroom. You can watch the replay, but it’s more of everybody does it together. There’s homework. You come back and you talk about it. I’ve done that with Kim Garst for a Pinterest course that we’d done. How much community and the, you have to build on top of the stuff of just creating a course, because that’s a little overwhelming too.
The Importance Of Building Community For Online Courses
[00:24:38] Ian Anderson Gray: It is. Adrian, Adrian Salisbury has been a massive influence in there. I love I love the cohort courses that he’s done, but he don’t have to do that for all your courses. So there’s no need, there’s no need for some of the like mini courses that I sell. I’ve got about four, five mini courses that they sell for about $27.
[00:25:00] They’re just solving like one problem or a couple of problems. So there’s no need to have a community. I don’t think people would need that. My mum wetter did a course and she was actually frustrated by the cohort part of it. She just wanted to learn the stuff. And I remember seeing it was, I think there was a I was wanting to learn something about the email software that I use, that my mailing, their software.
[00:25:24] And I was just looking about deliverability. I was wanting to say what? I just need to know this one or two things. And I saw somebody course and. It was a membership and it had this and had that and this, and I thought I don’t need any of that. All I want to know is I just want like a 20 I’d even pay like 40, $50 just to find the answer to these problems.
[00:25:47] So I think you need to be careful don’t overcomplicate it, but there was definitely a space for this cohort. And of course, all the community putting a community aspect into your course. And I did that right from the start with my OBS cost full. Actually my reasons were in living in the UK. And we were in the EU at the time.
[00:26:09] There was this sort of weird law that where the tax, they were tapped you and you’d have to, I won’t go into all the details, but basically it became really complicated. I’d have to become VAT registered and all this kind of stuff if I was selling digital courses, but if I had a live element. I didn’t need to worry about any of that.
[00:26:27] So that’s why I had a group and we had a live video live shows in the, and it was giving some, a group group teaching in there. But I realized from that experience that’s, I love doing, I love meeting with real people and people as they go through a course, particularly a slightly longer course, people are more likely going to finish it if they have that accountability and that encouragement from other people.
[00:26:53] So having a cohort, because when it could something very simple, like a Facebook group or volley, you’ve mentioned volley today, Jeff, that could either get, just invite people to volley. And they could basically ask you questions for a couple of weeks as part of the cost. And they can get involved with each other and chat about things in the, in that community.
[00:27:18] So it doesn’t have to be complicated, just a Facebook group, a volley group, something like that as part of it. But as you become once you create bigger courses, more expensive courses, then you can increase the the community part of it a lot more. And you can have quizzes in there and you can have live workshops in there and do a lot more.
[00:27:43] So what I’m trying to say is start simple. If you are using the community aspect is too complicated, it’s too big. It’s too much for me. Excuse which I’ve used as well, then just, don’t worry. Don’t worry about it. Just create a Facebook group or not at all. And then as you get more experienced, you can get more and more flashy with all your community.
[00:28:07] Jeff Sieh: So I wanted to bring up a comment here from hard-boiled English says, he’s glad that we’re covering this topic. Building an online course is my central focus this year. Yeah, so I know a lot of people are interested in this subject and then I, and so I wouldn’t bring up Chuck as I want to continue this conversation just for a little bit.
[00:28:25] He goes I think community and live coaching is the new secret sauce. And I would agree. And what to Ian’s point like I have. Just a little, I taught how to make this pop-up video effect that I did. So it’s, I call it a mini course. There’s no community thing on there. It’s teaching one little thing.
[00:28:43] It’s a, you know how to do this effect. And here it is, it’s this amount of money. And it’s what your mom was like, your mom wanted you. It was just information. Go through the course. You’ll learn how to do it. But I do think more and more people, number one, they want a community. They want to learn.
[00:28:58] Even if you don’t do it, cohort work cohort where you build it up together, they do want a place where they can come and ask questions and get it answered in a reasonable amount of time. But also this community thing, they also want access to you. Like I want to ask if I buy a course from Ian, I want to ask Ian some questions like Ian, I can’t get my lower third to come up.
[00:29:20] It’s backwards. What did I do wrong? How do I fix this? And yes, it’s a little bit more intense for the trainer, but that’s what I think people want in that live coaching thing. Like Chuck was saying, are there tools, or you mentioned a Facebook group, you mentioned volley a little bit. Are there some expectations now that the, that people have when they buy a course that you’re just going to have to address?
[00:29:46] It’s just kind of basic customer service,
[00:29:49] Ian Anderson Gray: yeah. I think you have to be really clear on your sales page about what the expectations are. So for example, with one of my courses, because of the time zone issue, I say, are you, so I have a list of FAQ’s and I say, are you from L or I think it is, are your live calls, Australian timezone friendly?
[00:30:12] And I have to say, unfortunately, no, they’re not, but if you are interested and you’re from Australia, there’s a link here to let me know. And I’ll, I hope to do one in the future. So you have to have expectations like that, and you have to think, say things like. The Facebook group that you joined when the community on the Facebook group will be open for four weeks.
[00:30:36] So the cost lab will say last two weeks, and then we’ll have two weeks after that, after which I’ll be archiving it. So you just be really careful about these things, because you’ve got to think about your time. You can’t just answer people’s questions for forever and people don’t expect you to do that.
[00:30:52] So say that, but put a time limit on these things and say I won’t be able to necessarily respond straight away, I’ve, I need to sleep occasionally. So you’ll be able to get back to people within say 24 hours and things like that. And that’s what I’ve done with my course, there’s one week of the six weeks where I’m actually away.
[00:31:12] So when I’ve made it very clear that we’re not having a live call that week, but that is a week free for everyone to practice with a live video. So just be really clear about that at the end of the day, you’ve you’re creating a course. That needs to be attractive to your audience, but it also needs to work with your lifestyle and what works with you.
[00:31:33] If you have kids or if you’re going away, then you can’t be in the community 24 7. So maybe get a virtual assistant or what’s really cool is what I found with my courses. Once I got my third one, I had a couple of people who’d done it twice. And they were like super fans in a way. So they were able to come in and actually be able to moderate and be able to be part of the community, almost like a staff part of the staff team.
[00:32:02] So think about that as well. You, once you’ve done this a couple of times, you can actually get people to come in and help. And I’ve noticed a lot of people doing that, getting community members to be part of the team.
[00:32:13] Jeff Sieh: So I want to bring up this comment from Gary. He goes he says record, this is a great tip.
[00:32:19] So he says record an asynchronous video, answer to every question that comes in, then be sure to tag and categorize it. You will eventually have a nice library of prerecorded frequently asked question answers that have a lot more pop than a typical, a frequently asked questions, support article that is genius.
[00:32:35] Gary, thank you for that comment. And by the way, you can do all that stuff with, we, we’ve been talking about this a little bit. If you just joined us about this thing called volley, which allows this type of asynchronous video communication, and you can download it, after if I, if he asked a question and I said, Hey, Ian, this is how you do this in Ecamm you go here and here, and then I can download that and save it and I can send it to somebody.
[00:33:00] Yeah. Who asks the same question. And if you want to join our volley about the show, make sure you go to socialmedianewslive.com/chat. We actually take questions from there and bring them into the show. So it’s really cool.
[00:33:16] Grace Duffy: And then the two things on volume because the, that thread just rolled out this week.
[00:33:21] So that’s been really interesting. And then I real, I found out yesterday they have a follow-up feature where you can click and tag it to follow up. So as you’re getting this you’re out doing your life, whatever, and you get these questions, you can flag them and it get, puts it into a separate little inbox.
[00:33:35] And so you can go through and answer each of those in the thread too. Yeah, that’s an easy way to do that. I think using volley, but I’m sure you could do this in some other way as
[00:33:43] Jeff Sieh: well. Yeah. And so just to be how important community community is. And this is when I was doing this course with Kim Garst will, you would do it.
[00:33:52] It was cohort thing. We do at a training in the morning. We give them homework. And when we come back in the afternoon and we talk about it and, and look at their stuff and, give them some. The interesting thing was when that was done, people asked, said, Hey, we will pay to continue this on for awhile.
[00:34:09] They brought it up. We didn’t even sell anything. They said we’ll pay. We want to pay to continue having you guys review our stuff to see that we’re doing it right. And we like, okay, but when your community asks to pay to do something, that’s how important community is. So I really think that you don’t have to do it like everybody else.
[00:34:27] You don’t have to automatically create a Facebook thing, but think of a way. And like Chuck was saying that it’s the secret sauce, think of ways that you can build a community or have a community for a time around your course, because I think that makes it super attractive to other people. So
Upselling Your Courses
[00:34:42] Ian Anderson Gray: I think I think the other thing you can do is, so this is one car I’m experimenting with.
[00:34:46] I’ve got about five or six low ticket. Courses like $27. I’m going to be doing is when people buy that they’ll have, it’s like an upsell. So they’ll also have the opportunity to upgrade and the way to get the course that has the community. And at the end, once they’ve finished the course.
[00:35:06] They will also have the opportunity to upgrade. So you’ve finished the course. That’s great, but maybe you need some extra help and you want the community. So think about thinking about that. Creating some small, you could create some free courses. You can create some low price courses, but also have some courses that have that community aspects of it.
[00:35:23] And you want to help it hold your audience’s hand your customer’s hands as they go down through that journey. And they may not have the competence to invest right at the start in your higher price, a hybrid courses with the community, but over, but once. Got that trust in you, but also in themselves, then they can go down that route.
[00:35:46] And also the other thing I would just want to just briefly say is put some gamification into these things and accountability. I think those are two things that can really help. We have. I created leaderboard and badges. So people love badges. Like it’s ridiculous. Like these little, I don’t know whether you call them NFTs but there’s certainly the little images that they get that say they’ve the top computer contributors of the week, or they’ve got the highest number of points or whatever it would be.
[00:36:12] People love that. And I think that’s just a really fun bit of fun, that’s the one thing we haven’t really talked about I suppose, is make them fun and enjoyable people actually as well as wanting to learn stuff, if you want them to actually get to the end of it, they need it.
[00:36:29] Have some fun along the way. Otherwise they may struggle. Let’s face it. Sometimes learning is not easy, right?
[00:36:36] Jeff Sieh: Yeah. Cause there’s a lot of courses out there that are really boring. So if you guys can make them fun and exciting, then you’re already, 90% better than your competition.
[00:36:45] So just think about that. Okay. We’ve got our course done. It’s ready to launch. Now I know a lot of too many creators make the mistake that they can just print money now because they got this course out. And once their course is created, now they have this income stream. So we know the truth is that you really need to have a launch in an ongoing marketing strategy and a lot of people launch multi, multi times per year and upgrade their courses.
[00:37:12] What should your marketing plan for your course include Ian? What things should you do to get your course out there in front of this many eyeballs.
How Do You Market Your Online Courses?
[00:37:23] Ian Anderson Gray: If you’ve created your course, and now you’re starting to think about the marketing plan. You’ve done it the wrong way round. You need to think about it the other way around.
[00:37:30] You need to start thinking about how am I going to get this out? How am I going to be able to let people know? And so the marketing for most courses has to happen like 6, 7, 8 weeks before you launch it, because there are so many moving parts you need to think am I going to be using Facebook ads?
[00:37:49] For example, all I need to think about the copy. And I need to think about this and that. And the next thing. You also need some to think about your audience and your community and the emails that need to go out. Now. Again, I don’t want to put people off here. I don’t want to over-complicate things.
[00:38:03] What I’m saying is that you need to think about what do you need to do in order to let people know about this? And the biggest thing really has to be your products page or your sales page, whatever you want to call it. There needs to be some that needs to be. Some time spent with that. You might want to put some testimonials on that.
[00:38:24] You might want to record a video on that. Actually putting a video on your sales page will be will create a lot more trust because people want the year. And that is the one big or mission as we speak on my accelerator course page. And that’s what I’m going to be doing tomorrow because it needs that.
[00:38:45] So you need to spend that time. And then of course, you’ve got the social media marketing side of things as well, email. So there’s a lot that goes into it. And when it came to my last course that I did June last year there was, I think we had a six week, I think it would actually use the sauna and we planned it all out, had six weeks and in week.
[00:39:09] Because of course you’ve got week last week. When it actually launches, but the week before, or the couple of days before it might be when the doors close and then that week up to the doors closing, you might want to be sending an email out every day to your newsletter subscribers and telling people about it.
[00:39:30] And then of course, you’ve got the doors open before that I know I’m going backwards there, but I think it’s a helpful way of looking at it maybe a week or two before the doors closed, that when the doors open. So you need to make a big fanfare about that. Then before that you need to tease people all, they’ve got this exciting new thing that’s coming out.
[00:39:48] You can sign up for the waiting list here and maybe get people like a freebie, a thing maybe a couple of lessons, all the costs for free. So they get an idea. So there’s a lot of things that go into it. And depending on how big the course is they’re the more you’ll have to do. So for my $27 courses, I don’t do any way.
[00:40:10] What I’m talking about is cause they they’re being sold over time, but when I have so for example, the accelerator course that I’m doing, or the launch, a live course that I did last year, that only happens three or four times a year. So I have to have a, I do a big launch for that because there is a community aspect to it.
[00:40:28] And people, the actual course itself is drip fed over say two weeks or six weeks. So you do need to plan it out.
[00:40:37] Jeff Sieh: So I got a couple of questions here in first. I want to pull up this this comment from Sabrina because I think it’s really good. She goes, people need fun, especially now. And people need community, especially now.
[00:40:50] I think that is key Sabrina. And I think, and those are kind of things that I. Our evergreen. They never go away because people are always going to need fun. People are always gonna need community. So Ian, one of the things that you didn’t really talk about, and I think it’s really a thing that people I know when they create courses and especially creating for the first time, worry about is that promotion.
[00:41:13] And I, I’ve not bought a lot of courses because I’ll go to the landing page and I’m like, I still don’t know if I’m going to get value from this. And I think they, people don’t show enough under the hood of what this course is about. So how much do you show, like how much do you give away a free module from the beginning you give away your best module.
[00:41:34] How do you give that expertise out there? Where people will go, oh, Ian really knows live video. He knows what he’s talking about. And he showed me what’s inside of the course, gave me a free module. I’m going to, I’m going to spend them. How much do you give away? How much do you hide? And I think most of us tend to hide too much is what?
How Much Of Your Course Should You Give Away Free?
[00:41:53] Ian Anderson Gray: no, you need to be a lot more. This is a, it’s a difficult one. Cause you, you just worried about people stealing your stuff. But I, the course that I went on that I spent a thousand dollars on, I think I got three free modules and I looked at it and they changed so much in my business and I thought, oh my goodness, like these three modules have changed so much.
[00:42:17] What an earth can rest of the costs be I need to buy this. So I was, but also it was, I could really trust the guy anyway. So it started with, I trust this guy, number two. Wow. I’ve got these three modules, which are amazing. And then I looked back and there were these great answers to my problems.
[00:42:35] My concerns about course as well were on there. And there was a video that walked me through the back end. And so I think that’s important. That’s something that I’ve done in the past. I’ve looked further down the sales page. I put a little title that says still here, still have any more questions and have a video on there that will then basically take people behind the scenes and see what they’re actually getting.
[00:42:58] See the courses, see how it works and see the community. That might be a little bit difficult if you haven’t started the community, but you can at least talk to people about how that will work as well. So people, not everyone will want this, but some people will want to see behind the scenes as well too.
[00:43:14] And the video will work really well there. So I highly recommend doing that and it doesn’t, it doesn’t have to, you don’t have to spend much time on it. It’s just. Giving people a little tour of the backend of your course website. Really
[00:43:28] Grace Duffy: good here. He has a great question here. Jeff, I’m going to, if he can bring it up, I’ll read it.
[00:43:34] Any suggestions on partnering with, and, or leveraging existing communities or possibly other consultants that are well-established on the web, suggestion and partnering with them, getting to their communities, but building your course and selling them in those communities. Correct me if I’m wrong, Gary, but I think that’s how I’m reading it.
How To Partner With Other Influencers To Sell Your Course?
[00:43:52] Ian Anderson Gray: This is an interesting one. And I see, so you mentioned Amy Porterfield earlier, and I know that she’s sells, she’s an affiliate for Marie Forleo, is it? And so I see this happen a lot and I think it can work, but I think you have to, it can be dangerous. If it just depends on the audience.
[00:44:16] If if you know somebody another business owner and they have a community that would definitely be interested in buying your course and other, this other business owner, doesn’t really talk about what you’re talking about. Then there’s probably a good synergy that I think it’s a good, because they’re probably not going to be talking about this.
[00:44:42] So for example, it could be somebody who talks about creating email marketing, email the best email marketing campaigns, and they’re all, they have a really fantastic audience, but they don’t really talk about webinars. Maybe you can talk about webinars. And so there’s good synergy there, but I think you just need to be careful because.
[00:45:06] Why should the other person, we spending a lot of time on marketing for your business and why should you be marketing for their business? I think you just have to be really careful about that. It can work, but as I’m finding, this is no, I have great respect for Amy Porterfield, but we’re getting to the point now where it’s almost saturated, we’re talking about, I see every single email I’m getting is about the school.
[00:45:34] And I think it, it can, I think there’s a, you just gotta be careful,
[00:45:39] Jeff Sieh: I think. And I think the point of that is, is I know when people. It’s usually a 50% split of commissions. That’s the standard thing when you do somebody else’s course. And so it’s got to make sense for both of you that, so like I talked about before I did a Pinterest course with Kim Garst that made sense for both of us and, it just worked out really well.
[00:46:00] And her community and my community other Ian’s is launching this course. I have a descript course or a repurposing course that I’m going to be launching soon. He and I. If you think about technically we could be competitors, cause we both talked about live video and stuff, but we’re really not there’s enough stuff to go around.
[00:46:16] And I think the biggest thing that people who first get started in this business is there so much. And I know I was that I was so worried about competition, that it really limited me with my networking with other people. And once I got over that, then things really started opening up. And so Ian and I can partner together and work for, benefit both of our audiences because of this.
[00:46:40] And they know us and he’s been on my show, I’ve been on his show. And so there’s already trust developed. And so think of those ways where you can collaborate. Cause I’m a really big believer in that. And a lot of people are so scared and they wanna hold it. So tight, you have to have that song. What is that?
[00:46:54] Hold on loosely. I’m not going to sing it but you got to hold on loosely to it. And yeah. Gary says you have to be careful not to step on each other’s toes and that’s why it’s, there’s gotta be a relationship there. You just can’t go out on LinkedIn and go, oh, they’re in the same niche that I am.
[00:47:10] Let’s partner together. That’s not usually how it works.
[00:47:14] Ian Anderson Gray: Sorry. I totally agree with you, Jeff. I think it’s gotta be somebody that you trust. And you’ve gotta be, you go think about your audience, you’ve built up this time trusting. And if somebody else comes in, for example, it could be a webinar and you’ve partnered with somebody you’re getting 50%.
[00:47:36] You know them fairly well, but not that well. And suddenly they come in and they’re on this webinar selling to your audience and they, you suddenly realize that they’ve got these really sleazy sales tactics and you get these complaints from your audience quite rightly, because this is a completely different messaging tone.
[00:47:54] It might work really well. That kind of sleazy message a sales talk. It might work really well for that audience, but it might not work well for your audience. And so you just need to be careful. And I’ve heard I’ve spoken with a couple of different entrepreneurs who have had that experience and they’ve, so you need to do your research first.
[00:48:13] Ideally you partner with somebody you would know really well, and you’ve got that trust and you know that when you bring them onto a webinar, they’re going to be mindful of your audience and the way things work, we’re
[00:48:26] Jeff Sieh: going to ask. Oh, I
[00:48:28] Grace Duffy: was going to say the people that do it really well is actually our sponsor E cam.
[00:48:33] They do a lot of trainings. Like I just, every, it feels every couple of weeks they’re doing another training with another creator, talking about a different skillset integrating with their tool and what they’re offering, but it’s still valuable content regardless of whether or not you’re a customer or not.
[00:48:50] And you’re and so that, I thought that was a, that’s a really good way to partner and to capture an audience and also talk about yourself because I’ve seen over the past year since they’ve been sponsoring us a great number of trainings for.
[00:49:06] Jeff Sieh: Yeah, they do a lot. And by the way, I would, one of the things I know when you, people are putting out courses, what software to use, how do capture the video?
[00:49:15] What’s the best way to do that? I’m telling you Ecamm is the way that I do it because not only does it broadcast live to everywhere, it also can just record and I can have different scenes. I can have my slides set up for, my presentation and I can have stuff on, I can even have my notes up here and read it and have it.
[00:49:31] It’s just a perfect way to create presentations as well. So not only is it a great live streaming tool, but it’s also a great way. I use it to create Tik TOK, videos and stories. It does all these different formats. And so if you have a Mac I’m telling you it’s a no brainer for creating, even courses.
[00:49:47] So if you want to find out more, go to Social Media News, Live dot com forward slash econ. We really thank them for sponsoring the show and they do that. If you haven’t checked out their commuting. Their community is on fire. It’s a, one of those things you can really learn on how to create a great community cause they do it really well.
[00:50:04] So without further ado, I want to talk about, because I think there’s a lot of stuff we can learn from, and we’ve already learned a ton from Ian already with the stuff he’s this course, but I want to talk about Ian’s course and you can find out more about his courses, all the ones, like he has many courses that he talked about today and his full blown courses and he, even his landing page that has that he’s getting ready to do.
[00:50:26] If you go to dot M E for slash courses that’s Ian Anderson, gray dot M E slash courses. Go check that out because we’re going to, we’re going to dive into that really quickly because we he’s got a, he’s doing different types of courses even on his own page. Grace and you had some questions about.
[00:50:47] Grace Duffy: Talk to us about these two, because you sent me a note saying that you have two courses, a hybrid cohort core cohort, course. That’s hard to say. And then the other one is one that people can do at their own pace. So tell us about these courses and what inspired you to create them.
[00:51:02] Ian Anderson Gray: Yeah. Yeah.
Live Video Accelerator Course
[00:51:03] Ian Anderson Gray: So it was last year, so I’ve run a course called launch your life two or three times. That was a cohort course. So it was effectively w you went through some video modules over five days, and then in the second week it was all about practice and there were also every day, there were these live live webinars live masterclasses.
[00:51:28] I think you’d want to call them. And it was fantastic and the community was amazing, but the feedback that I got at the end of it was. There’s just so much to learn here. And there was a little bit of overwhelm. And so what I wanted to do is to split it into two. So I’ve got the, what I call the confident live launcher, which is very similar to that, but people can just work in their own time.
[00:51:49] So they’re going through their video modules. It is drip fed over five days, but they can do that in their own time. And there’s no community part of it. And it’s really for those people who want to pay less money, but want to do it in their own time. And that the kind of people that are doing it without the community, the accelerator though, is building on the feedback from last year.
[00:52:12] And it’s effectively a group mastermind. We’ve actually got a max of 10 people in the group because every week we have a zoom. With a mastermind group and we I will get some training in that, but I will answer people’s questions and we’ll brainstorm some ideas and answer people’s struggles that they’re struggling with as they go through launching their live show.
[00:52:35] And so that’s really what these courses are about. It’s all about the launch or is that launching a live show? The accelerator is about taking things to the next level. You’ve been going live, but struggling with some aspects of it. And so over those six weeks, you get an, a obviously take things to the next level, with the mastermind part of it, there’s a community that’s going to be on volley.
[00:52:59] There’s also going to be a Facebook group for practicing lives. And if you’ve also got the videos and some downloadable resources.
[00:53:08] Jeff Sieh: Sorry your video froze in a perfect way. There you’re back. Oh, see, you can switch cameras. Yeah. Yeah. But, so I want to just double check for this accelerator course that you’re talking about.
[00:53:24] So it’s IAG dot Emmy for slacks accelerate. Now that’s all lowercase all smashed together. The question I have, this is your community-based one. And is this one that you had mentioned, different ways to build community? When we were talking earlier, is this the one where you’re actually gonna shut it down after six weeks or how talk about in this accelerator accelerate now when, how the community aspects going to work and how, and actually, so talk about the community.
[00:53:52] And then I want to ask you about how you’re funneling.
[00:53:55] Ian Anderson Gray: Yeah, so they, the community will be in, so I’m trying something new. So what could possibly go wrong? W we’re going to try and bolt we’re using this time. The last time we were using a Facebook group and it was really successful and we will be using a Facebook group this time.
[00:54:10] But that’s basically just to practice your lives. The actual community will be involved. And the great thing about that is this, as you were saying earlier, it’s this asynchronous nature of it. You can record a video, a question in there, or audio or text, and I think it’s going to be a great way.
[00:54:27] We’re going to have a different animals in there for different. Modules of the course, as well as the people can ask questions. And then that’s great for things like at the end of it, if you’re wanting people to we call it a video testimonial, or if you’re wanting to download lots of questions, it just makes it so much easier for me.
[00:54:45] And it’s also easier for the community as well. So that will be available for the six weeks of the course and two weeks after. But then we’ll archive that and if people want to carry on, haven’t quite figured this out yet, but the goal is to then create a membership from this, which will be the competent live marketing academy.
[00:55:08] The COVID align marketing academy at the moment is really encompasses everything that I do all the various courses, but the academy eventually will be a membership committee, which people will be able to pay for. If that makes sense.
[00:55:21] Jeff Sieh: Yeah. So let’s talk really quick. We’ve got a couple minutes left is how did you build your funnels for this?
[00:55:26] How are you getting people to know about this course? And you mentioned, sometimes people build it before they don’t have it built before they launch it and then they build it as they go, which is a cohort based kind of thing. So how are you getting people into and knowing about your new.
[00:55:44] Ian Anderson Gray: So there’s a number of aspects to it. First of all, I’ve got an audience, I’ve got an email list. So it’s emailing people in the list. I’ve got campaigns for that. Also people who have bought courses before, they’re more likely to buy my these courses and especially the people who were on the launch live courses.
[00:56:04] So it’s and I’ve got a Facebook community for those people. That that’s where I’m going first, but also they’ve got contacts outside as well. There’s the Ecamm live community who have been very grateful. They the past to promote my courses and another people as well.
[00:56:22] So it’s relying on my audience primarily, but also some of the contacts that I’ve built over time as well, this time I’m not investing in Facebook ads I may do in the future, but that’s something I’m not doing at the moment. We’ll see how we get on with that. But if you’re wanting to if you want to.
[00:56:44] If you don’t have a big audience and you wanted to get other people to your course that are outside your community, then creating a campaign with fake ads creating some downloadable modules that you can get for free would be a great way then to then target them afterwards in a campaign as well.
[00:57:04] Jeff Sieh: Awesome. If you guys don’t, haven’t figured it out. You knows a lot about live video and all of our courses. So Ian, thank you so much for being here today. You guys can find out all about his, all his courses at let’s see at iag.me/courses And don’t forget about his new course that is coming up at iag.me/acceleratenow.
[00:57:24] Now that’s gonna be the one that has all the the community stuff built in it. So I follow Ian for years, known him for a long time. He always brings the good that I’m going to be signing up for this course along with thousands and thousands of people. So that’s going to be an amazing place as well.
[00:57:43] But for
[00:57:45] Ian Anderson Gray: his other, but by the way, that link, that length accelerator link there’s if you get a dodgy deal, special $500 off. So yeah if don’t just go to the court space, that’s fine. But use that link accelerate. Now, if you want to get the.
[00:58:00] Jeff Sieh: Awesome. Yeah. So this is so thank you, Chuck. Thank you guys so much for being here.
[00:58:05] I just wanna let you guys know. We are also a podcast. You can find us on all your podcast players. We would love for you guys to leave us a rating review. Ian has his confident live podcast as well, so I’m sure he would love it. If you guys would leave a rating review as well. Cause it really does help the podcast people out.
[00:58:22] Our next show is on Friday, March 25th at 11:00 AM. Eastern 10:00 AM central. You can always find us on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube and Amazon live Grace Duffy, the amazing Grace Duffy. Where can we find you? Because you are a main.
[00:58:35] Grace Duffy: I’m here every week with death, except when I’m not. I but the rest of the time I’m over at restream, I’m their video content manager.
[00:58:41] So come check us out over there. And I love doing this show. This was a great one. I was like, there were so many questions we had to edit out that I had that was just like, we’re not going to have time to get to all of that. We didn’t even get to all of them. But he, and has been a really great sport to hang out with us this morning slash afternoon.
[00:59:00] So it’s always fun to send out those notes and being like, yes, you have to come at four o’clock on Friday night to come hang
[00:59:07] Jeff Sieh: out with us. Exactly. And thank you, Gary. Thank you, Sabrina. Reedus and Dustin and everybody. Gary, who was in here earlier as well. All you guys who, and hard-boiled English, everybody who came and asked such great questions, we would not be able to do this show without you.
[00:59:22] And of course our sponsor Ecamm so make sure you guys go check them out as well. And with that, we will see you guys next time. Bye.