My proven guide for building your first course

published29 days ago
8 min read

Oct 01, 2023

Launching your own course can revolutionize the growth of your brand [Launch OS]

Alex Hormozi often talks about “delaying the ask” for money as long as possible.

In his words - “The more you give before you ask, the more you get to ask for.”

And while I don’t think he’s wrong, I think this advice needs to be taken with a grain of salt for two reasons:

#1 - If you’re building an audience purely off of dopamine seekers, they might respond poorly when you start trying to sell them something

It’s not uncommon to hear stories of founders with thousands of followers, that hardly make any money from their following.

And while this could just be an issue with their offer or how they’re selling it - I think there’s a lot to be said for how you “train” your following.

This leads me to the more important part of why you should sell digital products sooner rather than later…

#2 - Selling something solidifies your position as the "go-to" expert in your niche

I talked about systems for brand and community growth for a while before I launched anything.

But as soon as I started releasing courses, my position as "The Systems Guy" quickly solidified in people's minds.

By releasing your own digital product, you have the opportunity to deliver something that blows people's minds.

This in return gets them hyped up and talking about you even more.

And finally, I know I mentioned two main reasons, but there’s technically a third - you make money.

My low-ticket digital courses alone bring in $30k+ per month…

Even if you don't have a massive following, your digital product could bring in a couple thousand dollars a month.

And once it’s created, all you have to do is promote it.

Since I’m such a fan of courses, and I believe they can be a real game-changer for your brand...

In today’s newsletter I wanted to share with you my blueprint for building your first digital course.

Leverage my proven process to get your next offer built and live ASAP.

Introducing: Community OS

  • Do you know what brands like Red Bull, Apple, and lululemon have in common?
  • They obsess over creating a community
  • Want to create your own die-hard community of raving fans? Then you need to check out Community OS

#1 - Decide on your course topic

I go more in-depth into how you can hone in on the perfect offer in a past newsletter you can read here - however I’ll give you a quick overview right now.

Your course should be the combination of your zone of genius and what your audience wants.

List out your strengths/experiences and your audience’s desires.

Then come up with a course that is the intersection of these two things.

If you're still uncertain what to offer, here are 3 other ways to figure it out:

  • Pay attention to what people ask you for, and then create it
  • See what topics resonate well with your audience, and create your course around those topics
  • Ask select members of your community what they'd like to learn from you

#2 - Distill your core concepts

The essence of your course is in its core concepts, those groundbreaking principles that define your niche.

Each core concept should translate into a distinct lesson, creating a structured learning journey for people who join your course.

Something I’d recommend from my own experience?

Aim for lessons that are short and highly actionable.

Rather than an hour-long lesson, instead break that up into 7-10 minute easily-digestible lessons.

If it’s your first course, put together 5-7 core lessons, each focusing on one foundational principle.

I also recommend you include an introductory lesson that introduces you and sets the stage for the course.

And make sure to include a “post-lesson” that asks for a testimonial. This is also a great place to upsell one of your other offerings if you have them.

This is a slide from the intro lesson of Content Empire OS:

#3 - Structure each lesson for maximum impact

I like to think of each lesson in the course as a stand-alone teaching.

Sure, it can tie in with the others, but as a general rule - it should be informative and actionable by itself.

Here's a potential flow for each lesson:

  • Introduction: Briefly outline what the lesson will cover
  • Context & Significance: Explain why this concept matters
  • Deep Dive: Delve into the topic, providing insights, stories, and examples
  • Practical Application: How can the student apply what they've learned? Offer exercises or real-world examples
  • Wrap-Up & Actionable Steps: Summarize the lesson and provide tasks or questions that encourage immediate application

#4 - Record your course

Now that you've mapped out your course structure, it's time to design your lessons and get the course created.

Now while you could technically just record yourself talking into a camera, visuals enhance comprehension and engagement.

The cool thing is you don’t have to spend a bunch of money to create a fancy course.

Use Google Slides for creating your course content, and design any infographics, images, or other graphics with Canva.

This is what my V1 of a course looks like:

Consistency in design across all lessons will lend a professional touch, so settle on a theme and stick to it.

After I have my base slides created, I then have them professionally designed in Figma:

Once you have your slides created, it's time to start recording.

You can use a screen recording software like Loom to record yourself teaching while you go through the slides.

Ensure you're in a quiet environment, and your voice is clear and audible (investing in a good microphone can make a world of difference).

It doesn’t have to be 100% perfect, but you may need to record the lessons a few times to get something that’s good quality.

#5 - Hosting your course

Congrats on getting your course content created.

Now we just have to get it online and finalize a few last details.

I recommend hosting your course on a platform like Kajabi or skool.

These sites have been specifically designed for hosting courses and ensure an uninterrupted, smooth experience for your audience.

Make sure to add brief descriptions to each lesson and grab a screenshot from each lesson to use as the thumbnail for the lessons.

These platforms typically come with built-in landing pages you can use, however if you want to get a bit more fancy, you can design your own website with Webflow.

Regardless of what you use as your landing page, you will want to get a custom domain for your website.

You can use whichever site gives you the best deal, I typically just use GoDaddy.

You’ll also need to set up a Stripe account to be able to take payments, and I recommend that you use Mercury or Wise for the banking needs related to your course.

Finally, it’s highly likely you’ll want to incorporate a company to operate your business under.

I’m not a lawyer so I can’t advise you specifically around this, but I will tell you I use Incfile for all my business-filing needs.

Once you have everything set up, purchase the course yourself first to make sure that everything is working as it should.

This is what Newsletter OS looks like inside skool:

#6 - Launch your course

You’ve done it.

Now all that remains is to launch your course.

If you’re “building in public” then you can tease your course over the weeks leading up to the launch.

I suggest letting a few people have earlier access (even to just the course videos before they're uploaded) so you can get a few testimonials.

I recently let members of Founder OS get early access to Newsletter OS, and got a handful of awesome testimonials that I could share over the launch.

In regards to the actual launch, there are a few things you can do to really help ensure things take off from day one.

Consider having some launch-specific offers.

Whether it’s early-bird discounts or bonuses for people who join within a certain time frame, this can help incentivize people to join.

Also don’t be afraid to promote a bit harder than usual during the initial launch period.

Only a small portion of your audience is ever seeing what you share, so if you only post about it once or twice they might totally miss it.

After the launch is over, I recommend promoting your course at least two times per week depending on your content frequency.

You can also implement a referral program to incentivize current members to invite friends who might also be a good fit.

There you have it, my proven blueprint for launching your first course.

I hope you found it helpful.

Take some time this coming week to put together plans for your own course.

Once you do - hit me up on Twitter with what you came up with. (Feel free to share a screenshot and tag me!)

Let's win together 🥇


P.S. Whenever you're ready, there are 4 ways I can help you:

#1: Ready to grow your personal brand to $5 million or more? Let's chat. >>> Click here to schedule your Founder Clarity Call with my team

#2: Have you seen my YouTube Channel? I'm putting a ton of energy into creating heaps of valuable content that I think you'll like. Come check out my latest stuff, and give me a like and subscribe.

#3: Promote your brand to over 65,000 subscribers by sponsoring this newsletter (booking into November 2023).

#4: Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn for more operating systems, marketing tips, and community-building systems.

💎 Gem of the Week 💎

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Then I HIGHLY encourage you to check out my latest video.

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Founder OS (Business Growth Tips)

I’ve built 4 successful companies and a community of over 14 million people. My mission is to help 100,000,000 founders automate their business and hit $5,000,000 profit per year. I help you grow your personal brand and business in just 3 minutes a week.

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