How To Create An Online Course: The Ultimate Guide
How to Choose the Right Topic for Your Profitable Online Course
Imagine you're a busy business owner.
Under stress, working all the time, only a few spare hours in the week.
You've figured out the best way to grow your business is to win more contracts with corporate clients. But you're not sure how. So you're looking for a training course.
Which one would you choose:
Corporate Sales Training
- OR -
Land Your First Corporate Client in 30 Days
Or imagine you're a keen golfer and you want to beat your buddies. Which course are you most likely to buy:
The Complete Guide to Golf
- OR -
Knock 5 Shots of Your Golf Game
In each case it's the latter.
Most people (especially busy people which frankly is almost all of us these days) don't buy courses for the joy of learning a subject. We buy because they'll help us get an outcome we're looking for in our business or life.
We want to achieve that outcome with as little fuss as possible.
So the key to an attractive course that will have buyers knocking on your door is to ensure your course delivers a Specific, Tangible Outcome in an Important or Urgent Area for your potential buyers. And then to make that outcome clear in the way you describe the course.
You can get a 2x, 5x or even 10x increase in course sales for essentially the same content simply by focusing it on the right outcome and area.
And we're going to find a great topic for you in three steps.
Brainstorm Ideas using Topic Triggers
Strengthen Your ideas
Evaluate and Select the Best Idea
Tips for Finding a Great Course Topic
Using Topic Triggers to Brainstorm Great Ideas for Your Course
Rather than staring at a blank sheet of paper trying to come up with great ideas for your course that will be attractive to potential buyers, you can get going fast and start with proven ideas by using these Topic Triggers.
Ask yourself each question and make notes on the topic ideas that come to mind. You won't necessarily be able to answer each one, but in total you should get a really solid list of potential topics you can then work on.
Strengthen Your Initial Ideas
You're now going to look at your initial ideas to see if you can strengthen their appeal.
If you 've got a long list of ideas, select the top 4-6 for further refining. Just go with the ones based on gut feel you think would be the most likely to succeed and the ones you’d be the most interested in pursuing. You can always come back to the others later.
Then look at each potential topic and see how you can make them:
For example, if your original idea is to do a course on presentation skills, you can strengthen it in a number of ways:
More obviously valuable:
More specific and tangible:
More different, more new, more memorable:
Evaluate Your Ideas
You're now going to evaluate the ideas you've brainstormed and then strengthened to select a "candidate" idea for your course to take through to validation.
For this, you're going to use three criteria:
Evaluate your leading topics against each of these criteria on a scale of 1 (low) to 5 (high). Use the following guidelines to help:
Value to Clients:
Uniqueness of Course:
Ease of Development:
If all the topics score below 10 in total, go back to generating more topic ideas.
If you have one or more topics that score above 10, any of them could be a successful topic for a course. Normally you would pick the highest scoring topic unless you had a strong personal preference for one. In the event of a tie, go with the topic with the greatest client value.
For your first course try to go with a topic that scores highly on Ease of Development - ideally 4 or 5. Once you're more experienced at developing courses you can work on more challenging ones.
Take your topic forward to the next module on finding your best audience.
Identifying the Best Audience for Your Online Course
Identify and evaluate the best potential audiences for your course to use as you develop and launch it:
Learn more about Identifying the Best Audience for Your Online Course