If you hadn’t noticed, many people are utilizing challenges and courses to grow an audience, bring in revenue, and build their brand. You can create free or paid challenges and courses, serving to explode your email list or bring in passive income. Ready to learn more about using challenges and courses for YOUR brand?
Listen to Episode 69- Utilizing Challenges and Courses
Connect with Jennifer
Utilizing Challenges and Courses for Your Brand
How Jennifer Runs Her Detox Challenges
- When people sign up, they get the content dripped out over Mailchimp autoresponders.
- The content is a mix of PDFs and video content shared or linked to in the emails.
- You can sign up evergreen and go through the detox or at one of a 3-4 times a year with a group.
- There is a Facebook group for the detox that mostly is active during the group challenges.
- Once you buy, you are in it for life and still have access to the program guide and can restart a challenge when another group challenge starts up.
Evergreen Challenges vs Group Challenges
If people want to buy and are interested, evergreen offers a chance for people to start now and not wait. But the accountability piece and the group piece of doing a challenge together has been more popular and more successful for people. People can post successes or slip-ups, which helps them and also the group as a whole.
Promoting a Challenge
- If there is a time that makes more sense (like right after Christmas for a health challenge), plan around that. Start promoting ahead of the event, but have the start date relate to that key time of year.
- Have pictures that promote on Instagram and social media that give a teaser for the content of the challenge and have links in social profiles go to the signup page.
- Ask other people to share images and posts on social media for you to help promote.
Planning a Course
Start with a targeted audience in mind
Solve the problem or pain point that you know that specific target has
Speak the language of those people so they resonate
Options to Consider When Planning a Course
How Content Will Be Consumed
Decide between dripped content (released one week at a time), evergreen content (where people can access everything and bing if they want), or live courses (where you literally set dates and show up live to teach.
What Kind of Content
You can have live videos (for the live course option), videos of you talking to the camera, or videos of you talking over slides. Or you don’t have to use video at all! I’ve taken courses that are a mix of video and audio or written content. Just know that many people EXPECT video, so if you are using another format, be up front about this.
Where Content Will Be Hosted
You have the option to build out a course yourself using membership software and course software OR hosting it somewhere else like Teachable, where you pay monthly and/or transaction fees to have someone else host your content. With both, you own your content, but when you host it yourself you have more control, which ALSO means you are responsible for the issues that arise. (Story of my life as I type this.) Even things like an affiliate program are tied into Teachable’s platform!
When you use another platform, you don’t have to worry about the tech side, but it means your things are at another place and you are dependent on that platform’s limitations. There are not great free options, so realize that you will be paying either monthly/transaction fees (with another hosted program) or paying for the course/membership software.
If you can’t decide between self-hosting and having it hosted somewhere else, don’t let this decision hold you back if you’re ready to get moving. Consider your big picture why and your current needs. If you take the time to learn all the software yourself, will you be losing out on potential revenue? Worse-case scenario, you can put things up on Teachable and move the content later if you want a membership site or something self-hosted.
When looking at software and plugins for hosting yourself, consider all the pieces you will need. For courses, you’ll need to set up and take payments, protect content, have a course interface, and a way to capture emails and communicate with the students. Those are the BASIC needs. You may also want to have the option to drip out content through the software or have it connect to your email service provider to drip content that way. Each of these pieces may be included or may be extras that cost more money. You’ll also have to consider how to run an affiliate program. Sometimes this may be included and sometimes you will need a separate plugin to handle the affiliate piece.
Using an Affiliate Program
Teachable makes this SIMPLE and people can automatically be added to the affiliate program. Your happy customers are the best salespeople for your products. You may want to consider using different language for your affiliates (but still clear under the FTC for disclosure!), but you can control how you talk to your people about being an affiliate and help train them to be better affiliates and share with their people in a way that isn’t smarmy.
Final Thoughts from Jennifer: Consider your actual passion. Where can you take less time to do something that ISN’T your passion or isn’t something that needs YOU in it, you can save more of yourself to do the things that you really love or that need you personally involved with them.