Course Addict Asserts Massive Availability Of Online Learning “Never Enough!”
I’m a self-confessed course junkie.
(You know this, I know.)
Learning new stuff is just the BEST fun.
Plus of course you get to pimp your skillset with plump throw-pillows of marketable expertise — AND I’m told it keeps your synapses totally ripped.
So no wonder I can’t help myself.
Over the past decade or so, I’ve devoured courses in Acting, Fitness training, Creative writing, Motorcycle riding, French, Spanish, English as a World Language, Making felt, Glass jewelry, InDesign, Voice Over …
Not to mention endless hours of copywriting and business strategy training :) #loveit
But as any true addict knows, you always want more.
Happily for me, I’m spoiled for choice.
You can learn literally ANYTHING online these days.
Take a skim through this tiny slice of the almost limitless list you might choose from to stuff your course-junkie stocking this year:
- Advanced Knitting Techniques: 40 Ways to Cast On & Bind Off
- Deep Dive into the Psychology of Persuasion and Influence
- Google Analytics for Shopify: A Complete Step-by-Step Guide
- The Science of Beer!
- Curanderismo: Traditional Healing Using Mexican Plants
- Filming Outdoor Scene Transitions: Creative Techniques on a Budget
- Miniature Cat Portraits — in Watercolor (my, that IS specific)
. . .
Seriously, the range of super-focused skills and knowledge to scoop up out there is breathtaking.
I am the archetypal glutton-kid in the ultimate sweet shop. #binge
So does this smorgasbord of courses mean there’s no room for your idea?
The massive range on offer actually shows just how much demand there is.
Sure, there are hundreds of amazing courses out there, on everything from crocheting egg-cozies to the art of mindful hot tub maintenance …
But no one’s idea, or style, or framework is EXACTLY like yours.
And there will be plenty of potential learners out there who want it EXACTLY like yours.
You just need to find them — your minimum viable audience — and serve them better than anyone else could.
Here’s how to do that.
1 First ask, what is the change you want to make?
What true need to you see that you want to help people meet?
There’s no need to over-burden yourself at this point — you don’t have to aim to “revolutionize the American breakfast and banish sugar-poison cereals from every household!”
It can be a small and specific change to start.
“I want to help more families cook a healthy breakfast together.”
And once you’ve figured out how to help people make that change as well as you can, then you can scale up.
2 Next, who do you want to help change?
You can’t change everyone. You can’t be exactly what everyone wants.
And you don’t need to.
You just need to figure out what’s the smallest number of people you can serve brilliantly, and it still be worthwhile.
This is your minimum viable audience.
So who are the people you want to help? What do they have in common?
What makes them different from other people?
Identify your people based on what they believe, want, dream of — the stories they tell themselves, their worldview …
rather than what they look like, what they earn, or where they live.
Focusing on psychographics more than demographics will give you a far more tangible and relatable grasp of your ideal student.
So understanding that your people believe in eating healthily and sustainably, and see themselves as valuing family time together, helps you serve them much better than simply knowing their postal code and the square footage of their home.
3 What promise are you making?
When you offer anything to your audience, you’re making a promise.
Copyhackers’ Copy School says it can make marketers and copywriters “the most profitable people in the room.” That’s a promise about status.
A while ago, FedEx stated that it was the only choice “when it absolutely, positively has to get there overnight,” an overt promise about reliability, service and — yes — status again.
What can you promise to your students? It can be implicit — you don’t have to shout about it — but you need to be clear what your promise is.
And then keep it.
Here’s a little template, based on something from the Mighty Seth Godin, to help you get your head round your promise.
“My course is for people who believe _____________ , and want _____________ .
If you engage with my course, I promise it will help you get _____________ .”
4 Make it for them — and only them
Once you’re clear on who it’s for, and what you’re promising, you can tailor your course to do the job.
It doesn’t matter what others think — people other than those you want to serve. It doesn’t matter if they don’t get what you’re doing.
Because it’s not for them.
You made it for your audience — who trust and connect with you, because you empathize with and understand their dreams.
They may be tiny in number to start with, but as you perfect your product for them — and them alone — more like them will find you.
5 Join the narrative in their head
Knowing exactly who you’re serving also means that, in your marketing, you’re talking to the right people about your offering in the right way.
Like a screenwriter, you flesh out their character — you understand their circumstances, empathize with their worldview.
And once you do that, you can make assumptions about how they will respond in particular situations.
About what will fire them up, and what they’ll reject.
What they’ll be drawn to, what they’d eat their own hands to avoid.
You can tune into their own narrative — the stories they’re telling themselves — and work there to bring about the change you want to happen.
Have no doubt, there IS an audience waiting for you — an audience that needs exactly what you’ve got to offer.
This is why there’s so much variety out there — there’s an audience for everyone.
Thousands of minimum viable audiences.
All dying to give those synapses a decent work out.
If you’re a course creator or coach looking for help connecting with your minimum viable audience, drop me a line at email@example.com.
I’m a conversion copywriter — THAT’S WHAT I DO! 😃
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