Course Growth

Here’s how to pre-sell online courses successfully

Several course creators on Airschool and on other platforms pre-sell online courses. Pre-selling is a great strategy you can incorporate in your...

Written by Sara Illahi Panhwer · 3 min read >
pre-sell online courses

Several course creators on Airschool and on other platforms pre-sell online courses. Pre-selling is a great strategy you can incorporate in your sales funnel to make sure your course sells even before it’s launched.

Normally, when it comes to selling online courses, the general perception is that once the course is live, sales will pour in from somewhere. I’m here to prick your bubble because it doesn’t work that way. Demand has to be created for sales to happen. For that, you must pre-sell.

But what is pre-selling?

Pre-selling, as the name goes, is a process through which a product or service is sold before it exists or has gone live. The sales generated through pre-selling are known as presales. Forbes describes a presale as “a targeted sale before your product goes live”.

Pre-sales allow you to determine if all your effort and investment like time, money, etc. is going to be worth it for your target audience.

How to pre-sell online courses? πŸ‘‡

1. Sort course objectives 🎯

One of the first and foremost steps to pre-sell online courses is sorting things. This sorting includes your course objectives and outcomes. Now, you may ask, why is it that course objectives and outcomes have to be sorted? Well, it is not just sorting; it is also summarizing that is significant.

Remember: the customer has not come to you; you have gone to the customer. Look at it like a normal sales pitch. When you go to a potential customer, you try to be as precise, creative, and as to-the-point as you can. When there is a lot of detail, the reader/viewer will leave right away.

Moreover, the final product of your course briefing has to target the targeted audience’s pain points or needs. So polish your copywriting skills and get to writing a sweet and short brief for your pre-sell campaign.

πŸ’š Read: 10 easy ways to increase your course sales

2. Create a pre-sales page πŸ“

A pre-sales page is different from the usual sales page. It is designed to specifically strike the viewer/visitor and convince them to buy the course. Use strong and catchy headline such as Investing in a skill never goes in vain; grab your seat! The call-to-action needs to be simple with no hard-selling.

One great way to use your pre-sales page is to launch a glimpse of your course, or a pilot course video for people to check out. This way they’ll be able to see how you have authority on a certain subject and come to trust you a bit more.

While your regular landing page serves as a place to connect and see other options, your pre-sales page is a much more narrowed down version of the landing page. The content is written in a way that it instills FOMO in the viewer, and they think, “I can’t miss out on this!”

3. Give them social proof πŸ’―

When you’re pre-selling, it is obvious that you will be using social media in some capacity to see how well the course is received, to increase the course hype and, of course, to collect emails.

However, no matter how many ads you put up, people tend to go for courses where they see some authority. In simpler terms, you as a course creator have to come off as the top person to know about something. How can that be possible, though? One way to show that you are an expert is to highlight your previous online courses’ reviews.

If you are a new course creator and this is your first online course, you probably won’t have the reviews. In that case, use testimonials written for you by your employers, seniors, mentors or bosses.

πŸ’š Explore: How to determine course market fit for your digital course

4. Get an email list handy πŸ“§

To pre-sell online courses, emails play a pivotal role. They have higher open and click-through rates as compared to other organic, digital mediums. So, use emails that you have with and build a list. This list could include emails of people who may have previously taken your courses or subscribed to you. It has innumerable benefits.

But what if you don’t have an email list? Well, in that case, scour through your social media and try to find at least a 100 emails of people who would be willing to hear about your course.

Send engaging newsletters, updates, even send surveys to your list to fill out. Let these people know their opinion matters. Grow from there on.

5. Take full advantage of digital media πŸ“²

If you want to reach out to a wider audience, one way to spread the word far and wide is using blogging as a marketing tool. You can start with writing on relevant topics, optimize them for search and drive traffic to you pre-sales page from the blog. If that works out, you can use paid advertisements to increase blog outreach. 

Tweet about your course idea and how you plan to approach it, ask your existing audience what they’d like to learn and how much they’d be willing to pay for your course – so you make these tweaks when you go into launch.

πŸ’š Read: How to determine the right pricing for your online course

Make free, downloadable papers and e-books for people to get by giving you their email address in exchange. Not everyone is fond of reading blog-posts, so try to incorporate videos via YouTube or TikTok – whichever is more your jam. Wherever you upload media, don’t forget to copy-paste your pre-sales page link, your free resources link and your major social media channel.

6. Don’t fret. Close the deal. 🀝

While pre-selling is a great way to market your course, it is also an experiment to see whether the course will succeed or not. Unless your pre-sales campaign results were a complete failure, don’t abandon your course.

Instead, close the pre-sales stage and open the sales stage. Keep working on it and make it better from all the feedback you receive as you pre-sell. Do you have any other ideas that we should add to this article? Let me know in the comments. πŸ’β€β™€οΈ

Start making your online course on www.airschool.com/teach today.

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Written by Sara Illahi Panhwer
Constantly striving to help course creators become a monumental part of the billion dollar ed-tech industry. Profile

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