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The last few years got you in a tizzy? How would it feel to get a fresh start and level up your business with online courses and increase your passive income?

Small business owners and entrepreneurs across thousands of niches have been busy exploring the benefits of online courses, group coaching programs, and memberships.

  • passive income
  • time freedom
  • easy to scale

Just a few of the reasons why selling online courses have become so popular (and profitable).

From yoga instructors to beauty influencers, teachers to travel bloggers, more and more people are taking their experience and turning it into passive income with online courses.

But having experience doesn’t mean you have to be an expert to bring your knowledge online!

Real Estate agents, coaches, authors, wedding planners, and even lawyers are using their experience to create passive income online!

If you’ve been thinking about creating, launching, and selling your own inline course, here are 6 steps you can start with to get your going.

Increase your passive income in 2024 with online courses

In my experience, creating an online course to increase your passive income is the only way to create a million-dollar business online as a one-person operation with little to no start-up cost.

Anywhere there is a NEED or desire to achieve a specific outcome, there is a market for an online course, you just need to know what it takes to make your course profitable.

To keep it short and sweet, the main benefit of having an online course is that you no longer have to trade time for dollars. An online business model allows you to move from working 1:1 to working with 1: many. So the same amount of time it takes you to coach 1 client you can exponentially boost your profits by teaching that same content in a group setting or self-paced course.

For example, a freelance fitness trainer can work with 8 clients a day. However, the same fitness trainer can train an unlimited amount of people by providing their own on-demand or pre-recorded workouts within an online course.

Creating an online course means packaging and presenting your unique set of skills into a teachable format and making it available to the masses.

This can include but is not limited to courses like tutorial trainings, video courses, multi-media content, a series of live stream coaching sessions, presentation-based online courses, and more.

And while it may sound a little overwhelming to organize your thoughts and produce a product people will be excited to buy, these days there are so many different tools available that make creating an online course easy to create and sell!

For example, Teachable is an inexpensive plug-and-play course creation platform that makes it easy to organize your training into modules and lessons, upload all relevant content, build out a beautiful sales page, and sell your course or program to your target audience!

How to get started?!

Are you ready to market your message and get paid to share your experience with the world? Wondering how to get started? I’ve got you…

Below I am giving you a handful of the first best steps you can follow to get you going! If you want to learn how to create your course ideas into 10K+ months, make sure to check out 5 Figure Course Creator!

#1: Come up with your course idea

There is a foolproof way to come up with your course idea.

  1. Find a topic that you are passionate about teaching people
  2. Determine if there are enough people out there who have the problem you solve
  3. Find out if these people with the problem are willing to pay for your solution

For example, my passion is teaching female entrepreneurs how to create passive income with online courses, coaching programs, and membership sites. My audience wants to learn how to turn their ideas into passive income (aka the problem). And because I’ve done the market research and know there are millions of people searching for and investing in ways to create passive income online, my coaching programs including 5 Figure Course Creator are a WIN. WIN. WIN.

Now there is a more detailed process for picking the perfect course idea, but it typically starts with a brain dump where you list up to 25 topics you’d like to teach.

From there you consider your area of expertise and begin to niche down to see how you can become even more clear on the course idea that’s best for you.

You’ll definitely want to do some market research to determine if your audience is actually interested in your course topics. Market research can include questionnaires, FB and IG polls, talking to former or current clients, and searching sites like Amazon, Udemy, and Google to see which topics your ideal student would be the most interested in.

#2: Create your course outline

Once you have your course topic on deck, the next step is to begin organizing your thoughts and outlining a framework for the content you will teach:

This is what I call your A-Z system and it is the process of taking someone who is at Point A (the person with the problem) through a transformation that allows them to end up at Point Z (where they want to be sans problem!).

When it comes to outlining your signature system here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Are your steps clear, concise, and working toward a clear outcome?
  • Are your steps actionable (meaning are you making it easy for your students to take action)?
  • Are your steps following a clear sequence and does that sequence make sense?

A typical online course will have 5-10 modules with each module containing 5-8 lessons within each module. There are many different sizes of courses and how much content you include will depend on how specific your course gets. Your focus should not be on how big or small your course is, but on how impactful it is. Remember, quality over quantity wins the day!

It’s important not to stuff soo much content into one course because it becomes overwhelming for your students to complete it. If you feel like your outline is getting a little long, you can always create a bonus or an additional course altogether to dive deeper into the concepts you teach. Don’t be afraid to take your enormous course and break it down into mini-courses if you think it will get your students results quicker. Remember it’s all about the success of your students and making sure they actually get the transformation you are promising them. Plus, you can always sell them as a bundle!

#3: Choose the right course platform

The next step is to figure out how you will package and deliver your course content.

Now when I tell you that you have options when it comes to picking a course platform, YOU HAVE OPTIONS…

Dozens of them!

I’ve tried and tested many different course creation platforms but my favorite is Teachable!

Teachable is cost-effective, professional-looking, and easy to use and you won’t be overwhelmed with a ton of tech! It’s are great platforms for newbies and vets alike. They also have a ton of resources from a Facebook group to training webinars, user support, and a robust knowledge base.

If your find that Teachable is not a good fit for you here are a few other options you can consider:

#4: Brand your course

When people are consideing your course they want to see a professional looking and pretty product. People tend to buy with their eyes first so you want your visual design and style to be tier one.

If graphic design scares you or you just don’t have the time to tackle the visuals, you can always hire a designer or a VA who can do this for you.

But, if you are anything like me and love to DIY design, you can design all of your graphics using my favorite tool of all time…Canva.

Here are just a few things you’ll need to design to pull your course together:

  • Course workbooks
  • Templates
  • Sales Page graphics
  • Presentation slides
  • Social media content
  • Product mockups

Other graphic design resources include:

  • Creative Market
  • Etsy
  • InDesign
  • Photoshop
  • Fivver

My best advice is to figure out who will be responsible for your course graphics and then plan accordingly based on budget, skill level, launch deadline, and number (type) of designs needed.

#5: Create your course content

Once you’ve gottent the logistics out of the way, now its time to create to content. Your course can be delivered using a number of different media types, but just so you know what your options are, here’s a list of different types of content to consider:

  • Text
  • Audio (Podcasts)
  • Presentation slides
  • Video content
  • Screencasts
  • Worksheets
  • Trello/AirTable boards
  • PDFs
  • Quizzes
  • Checklists

You can use any number of these types of content in your course. The key is to consider how you can best deliver your content based on your teaching style and personality. If you are comfortable in front of a camera, delivering your course live or “talking head” type videos is something that may come naturally to you, but if getting in front of a camera is not something you are strong at right now, don’t force yourself to do something that packs on added stress or puts you on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

Effective teaching comes when you are in your zone of genius, when you’re sharing comfortably and organically and not worrying about all the things you’re not good at.

Play to our strengths.

You’ll also want to consider the format that’ll work best for your particular audience:

  • Are they on the go? (if so a video series or audio series could be good, versus something they have to sit down and read)
  • Are they technically challenged?
  • Are they overwhelmed with distractions at home?
  • Do they need more hands-on support and need access to you in a Facebook group or need to be able to ask you questions during the training or can they consume a self-paced course that is self-paced.
  • Are they visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learners? Visual learners like graphs, charts, and pictures. They like “seeing” their information. If they are auditory learners, they retain information through hearing and speaking. And kinesthetic learners like to use a hands-on approach to learning. They prefer demonstrations and group work.

So all of these are things to consider when putting together your online course and being able to choose a platform or product type that caters not only to your teaching style but your audience’s learning style as well.

#6: Launch your course

Once your course is created, it’s time to share it with the world because no matter how great your course is, if no one knows it exists, then you won’t make any money.

So, your next steps are to work on your marketing message, your sales pages, and social media marketing and content plans. Launching and selling your course needs to be a strategic and well-thought-out process. You can not simply launch your course and say come get it. If you do, you will be highly disappointed.

The key to profiting from your course is to have an audience attraction and launch plan in place that allows you to build buzz around your course, attract your ideal audience and then sell to that audience by putting together an offer they can’t resist.

So to get started with your online course…

Ask yourself:

  • What am I passionate about teaching?
  • Are there people interested in what I teach (the problems I solve)
  • Will these same people be willing to invest in my solutions?
  • What course topic will I pursue?
  • What platform will I use to deliver my course content?
  • What content types will I include in my course?
  • How will I design my course graphics?
  • What will my audience attraction, content, and launch strategies be?

Learn to plan, create & scale your online course in The 5 Figure Course Creator. The step-by-step guide to creating, branding, launching, and selling your OWN wildly profitable course…(despite not having a big audience or feeling “ready”)

the 5 figure Course Creator

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