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AP 0406: I Have Courses. How Do I Build My Audience?

AP 0406: I Have Courses. How Do I Build My Audience?

By Pat Flynn on

AskPat 406 Episode Transcript

Pat: What’s up, everybody? Pat here. Welcome to Episode 406 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today. As always, I’m always here to help you by answering your online business questions, five days a week. We have a great, great question today actually from Tanner. Not to say that all the other questions aren’t great, but this is actually a really great question.

But before we get to that, I do want to thank today’s sponsor. First up is Lynda.com, L-Y-N-D-A dot com. A site that I’ve used myself several times to learn a bunch of different new software that I’ve been using. Also, how to use my DSLR camera. Also, I know that my assistant Mindy uses it and has been a subscriber for a very long time.

There are over 3,000 on demand video courses to help you strengthen your business technology and creative skills. Everything from, you know, productivity, to growth hacking fundamentals, to income tax fundamentals, security features for your iPhone and iPad. I mean, everything is there. You can check out all of the on demand videos are there to check out for free for ten days if you go to Lynda.com/AskPat. Again, that’s Lynda.com/AskPat. Check it out.

All right, here’s today’s question from Tanner.

Tanner: Hey Pat. Love everything you do man. Keep it going. Quick question for today regarding courses. I have multiple courses already developed and actually live. I’ve used Udemy to do that and I’ve had some success but not as much as I feel like I can get with these courses. I’ve spent a lot of time and effort. There in the web and mobile development areas and so I kinda want to start to do some of these private launches, you know, through my own site and things like that. I can get all of that set up.

My question is since I don’t know an audience yet or an email list, would your suggestion—and it might be pretty obvious—would your suggestion be to go ahead and make that site and then try and build up my email list. I’d like to be able to do this as quickly as possible just because the courses are made. I just need to be able to get that private launch. I want to do kind of the open and closed launch over, you know, probably over a span of a week. Just wondering what your thoughts would be on that. Have a great day, Pat. Love everything you do man.

Pat: Hey Tanner. What’s up? Thank you so much for this question. There’s a lot here, actually. I’m really encouraged to know that you have courses already. You know, a lot of people, including myself, kind of go the other way around where we start to build an audience first and maybe we’ve been building it for years and we’re too afraid to put a course out or you’re not exactly sure what people in your audience are looking for. You’re kind of going the reverse route and that’s kind of cool that you’ve used Udemy to validate these courses to get some sort of customers under you already. I think that’s a big benefit to you.

What the one thing I would do is make sure perhaps follow up with your existing customers, if possible, through Udemy, to figure out what else they want and perhaps discover what else is missing and really get to the pain points. That’s one of the struggles with using these other courses. You know, course market places out there, Udemy. It’s hard to get really into the heads of your customers because they have such a great marketing engine, that a lot of times you’re just getting customers automatically because of the emails they send out and if this person bought this course they see, well, people have also bought this course. You know how Amazon does that.

I think Udemy does that as well. So I would really try to explore and get into the heads of your audience. Know exactly who they are. Because when you use these marketing tactics that I’m going to talk about in just a second, it’s going to help you so much better. It’s going to be a lot harder, in terms of the marketing, because you can’t just put it up and you know, If you build it, they won’t come. It’s not a field of dreams out there. You have to build it and promote and I think that’s where the email list comes in as well. I think building email is just great.

Now, do you need a website to build that audience? Not necessarily. Not in the way I think you were mentioning. For example, you don’t need to build a website to start to write blog content, and do a podcast, and do videos to try and build an audience. I mean, that stuff could help, but you know, that’s the right I took. That’s the route that a lot of other people have taken to build that audience and then discover what that audience wants. But you already have something that is proven and there is customers, you said. So now, it’s a matter of you know, how to build that email list of those kinds of people.

So the trick is, one, well where do those people hang out? You want to discover what other sites and people out there are already targeting that audience and this will give you an opportunity to create JV partnerships and relationships with those people. You know, where you can perhaps give them a commission for getting in front of their audience. Or you can do an email blast off of their already existing email lists and those sorts of things. So those types of relationships are very, very common. That would be a very quick and easy way for you to get in front of an audience who you can’t get in front of right now.

Another thing you can do is these webinars. Webinars are an amazing way to build your email list and sell at the same time. So you’d be able to do kind of two for one, so yes, you get some “low hanging fruit from selling off of a webinar” and we’ll talk how to drive traffic to those webinars in just a second. But, when people register for a webinar, whether they buy or not, they’re going to be on your email list because for something like go-to webinar, they’re going to have to register and then they get notified days before the webinar comes out. Even if they don’t attend, you have their email and you can put them into a funnel where they follow up. So, webinars are a great way to go about it.

Well, how do you get people into these webinars? Again, you can’t just build it and hope it will come. There’s going to be a little bit of work behind it as well. Now, the number one way I know to grow your webinar list, is to, or to bring people and traffic into your webinar, which like I said, therefore, builds your list at the same time, of again, targeting users for the products and the courses you are selling.

Facebook ads is the number one way to do it and Amy Porterfield would agree with me, I’m sure. She’s used Facebook and Facebook ads to grow her email list through Facebook. She says Facebook is the number one way to grow your email list because you can get very targeted with those types of people. Whether you give away something on that webinar or you sell something on webinar, it doesn’t matter. But driving people into a registration process to go into something like a webinar or a free giveaway or a lead magnet of some kind is really going to help you build your list. With Facebook, you can get really targeted with who it is you are going to show those ads to. There’s something called “graph search” which allows you to find people who like certain kinds of pages, for example, on Facebook. You can target your ads for people who like certain pages. So if you find a personality or a website out there that a lot of people in your space follow, you can target those ads to people who like that page or who follow that person or you know, who are in those kinds of groups as well. Again, it makes it so easy for you to bring those people into your email list into that webinar funnel and then if they purchase, great. If not, they’re in your email list and you can put them down in another funnel as well. Again, it’s that whole thing of building your list.

Now, to go along with what I said back earlier, your JV partnerships or these affiliate commissions that you’re going to be potentially working with, with other people who have that existing audience, maybe instead of selling directly to their audience, you’re offering something for free, like a webinar or a Q&A. Maybe, you have some expertise that this person who has influence doesn’t have. It would be a win for everybody because you’d be able to provide information to their audience that they couldn’t do themselves. They would be getting a commission from sales. They’d be promoting for you so you kind of just be jumping ahead in terms of that trust because you have somebody who they trust already recommending you and that can help with in terms of growth of your email list and then the sales funnel as well.

You can also do Q&As. Q&As are a great way to go, especially if there are a lot of people in this space who are kind of trying to figure their way and weave their way in and out of it. Q&As are great. They make you look like an expert. They build authority. People can register to either get access to you or maybe they don’t. Maybe it’s something like a Periscope that you do where you are answering questions and then people can, at the end of it, subscribe to your list by getting something for free so maybe you’re teaching something and then at the end you say “hey, if you want to get my quick setup guide, 10 quick tips to help you achieve whatever, you go to this website and you download it there. It’s for free.” Of course, they’ll have to leave their email address and then they get put into that funnel. Again, where you then sell them whatever that it is that you are selling.
Now, I have some great audio files or excuse me podcasts which are audio files. I don’t know why it said audio files but I have some podcasts that I’ve done in the past. I think Episode 159 has to deal with autoresponders so that’s going to show you kind of the progression of what happens when people enter the autoresponder and how many emails they might need to purchase. And again, they might not purchase that first email. They might not purchase that fourteenth email. They might not purchase that thirtieth email. But they’re there and they’re going to help you out. If anything, you can get feedback and learn more about who their audience is through that interaction that you have. Ask them to reply and share what it is that they need help with. That can help you figure out what to create more courses about or eventually when you start to create content what you can create content about. That can help you as well.

Now, do you need a website of any kind? Yes. You need some sort of sales page, obviously, that you can sell whatever it is that you are promoting. There’s a lot of great templates on something like Lead Pages. If you use Lead Pages, AskPat.com/LeadPages is the affiliate link for those of you who listening. Lead Pages is great because you can literally, in a manner of minutes, create those pages that you need. A sales page, a webinar registration page, thank you pages, and you literally don’t even need to set up a domain. You can just have it all hosted on Lead Pages.

Now of course, if you’re going to be selling a product, you’d want to have that domain or something related to that domain or product registered there because people are going to be doing their research and finding it. The sales page is really important as well because you want to start keep track of conversions and tracking and that sort of thing. You want to have as much control over that as possible. Yes, you’re going to need pages and something set up to collect payments and delivery of all those sorts of things. I mean, if you want to do this privately, you’re going to have to create some sort of back end where people can login and get access to it and those types of things and there’s a lot of different solutions out there of you that can help you do that as well. WP Wishlist, WP Courseware, Zippy Courses by Derek Halpern is a great one to help you easily create these courses to get it to a point where you can make sales. People get there unique login and passwords to then login to get access to all that stuff. Again, Zippy Courses is great for that as well. Askpat.com/ZippyCourses, if you want to check that out. Yes, that is an affiliate link as well.

Just a couple of more resources to share with you as well, Tanner. I know this isn’t like a step-by-step answer for you but hopefully this gives you a lot of guidance in terms of what you can do next and what you’re looking for.

Amy Porterfield. I already mentioned her name. AmyPorterfield.com. She is the Facebook ads queen. You can check her out. Rick Mulready is another guy whose great. He is the art of paid traffic podcast so a lot of free resources there as well. Derek Halpern is a great resource too. He does these stop start, open-closed promotions too. I follow Derek not only because he’s a friend but because he does his marketing of his products very well. I also follow Ramit Sethi for the same reason. He does his marketing and his emails extremely well. Time tested, mother-approved, kind of stuff. Well, maybe not mother-approved but you know what I mean by that. Go ahead and check that out. But, yes Amy Porterfield also does those open-close launches too. Michael Hyatt, same thing. So those are some great resources you can check out and get inspiration from.

Tanner, I hope this has been helpful and we’ve provided a lot of resources here. I say “we” because I’m doing this live on Periscope so I just feel like there’s a lot of people in this room with me helping you out.

Again, this is Episode 406. If any of you have anything that you’d like to add and help Tanner out with, go ahead and go to Twitter and use the hashtag #AskPat406 Again, that’s #Askpat406, and we can continue this conversation off of this episode as well.

Tanner, thank you so much for the question. I appreciate it. We’re going to send you an AskPat t-shirt for having your question featured here on the show.

For those of you listening, if you have a question you’d like to potentially be featured on the show, just head over to AskPat.com and you can ask right there on that page.

All right, thank you so much. I appreciate you and I look forward to serving you in the next episode of AskPat. As always, I’d like to end with a quote. Today’s quote is from Marilyn vos Savant. She says, “Success is achieved by developing our strengths, not by eliminating our weaknesses.” Cheers. Thanks so much. I’ll see you tomorrow on the next episode of AskPat. Bye.

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