Another webinar that I found very informative was Justin Wise’s webinar, called “How to Easily Turn Your Book Into an Online Course for Additional Revenue.” In this blog post I’ll share what I learned from that webinar.
Justin started by talking about how his first book came out of a desire to show people how to use digital marketing – he worked at a church and no one was explaining how to use digital marketing to connect with people outside their organization. It took him 18 months to write his first book, but people love it.
The purpose in creating the book was to create a “calling card,” because when you get into a niche that no one is talking about like Justin was at that time, that is key. After that book came out, he started getting invitations to speak, which is why he created the online course. Since he can’t duplicate himself, the online course allowed him to bring information to a lot of people. He also said that a book has a very short lifespan – you’re going to sell about 90% of the copies in the first six months. He started building the online course about six months after he launched his book. He wanted to do it right, so he started building the course in August, did the pre-launch in November, and then did the official launch in February.
He also talked about the process of building an online course. He said every chapter of a book could be a module in the course – each module would have videos and audios, anything that you can think of that would help convey the information you want to convey in your course. In addition, you want to provide resources that are going to go along with each lesson, such as PDFs with the main points you want people to remember from that lesson. You can make your online course by putting videos on YouTube or Vimeo and sending emails through Mailchimp, but the best way to do it is through a completely automated system. The system he uses is Infusionsoft – it provides an order form where people can sign up and sends them the course material on a regular basis. However it’s very expensive and very difficult to figure out – if you have a smaller budget (like I do) you can get started on a smaller scale by hosting your content on a WordPress site. His recommendation for someone creating an online course for the first time was to have a three-part mini-course. Break up the material into three distinct areas, do a three-part training on that content, run the course through Gotowebinar, and see what the demand is. He also suggested checking out Clickfunnels – you can use it free for 30 days to register people for your online course. Once you see who’s registered through Clickfunnels, you can use gotowebinar to create videos and upload them to YouTube or Vimeo. He also suggested figuring out a way to offer replays after the live sessions are done.
The sales process he suggested using is, if you have a book in existence, go back to your mailing list and send an email to them asking them what they would like to see included. His suggestions for driving traffic and increasing sales of the course were to recruit people who know, love and trust you to help you promote the course, and also add a sidebar that says “Buy the Book on Amazon.” His final parting tip for this webinar was to start now, even if you look horrible on camera and have no idea what you would do a course on. If you want to find out more about him you can check out his website, http://justinwise.net/