How to Make Money With Online Courses and Promote it

Online courses are disrupting the way we teach and learn.

If you’re a content creator, entrepreneur, or just about anyone with a deep reservoir of knowledge, you should think about creating an online course

Wondering why?

Online courses are a great way to share your knowledge and showcase your expertise. They also generate passive income and boost your online reputation. If you get decent viewership and income stream, you can build an alternative career out of it.

Think I’m exaggerating?

Check out this fact: 

The e-learning industry has a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7% and is expected to reach $300 billion by 2025. Evidently, self-paced learning is the way forward.

I’m sure you want a share in this profitable industry. In this post, we will teach you how to create a successful online course and promote it effectively.

Let’s get started.

4 Steps for Building an Online Course That Beats the Competition

A lot goes into building and selling a successful online course. It’s not as simple as switching on your camera and giving a presentation.

Here is a quick walkthrough of the entire process:


1. Pick Your Niche

Research the niche that you want to target and decide your online course topic. 

You might be tempted to create a course about a topic that you love.

But does it have market demand? 

If you create a great online course in a niche that has no scope for online learning, your effort and investment will go to waste. 

For instance:

The plumbing and construction industries are hands-on sectors where practical knowledge counts. An online course will not get enough traction there.  

You can use social listening tools to understand what topics people are talking about. 

It’s also a good idea to pick a topic and niche where competition isn’t stiff. Digital marketing is a hot topic of discussion but it’s saturated with online course material. So, another online course will probably go unnoticed.

Market research can help you pinpoint the niche you should focus on. Check out online courses in the niche that you shortlist. If the existing content is unsatisfactory, you have an opportunity to fill that gap with your course. 

At the same time, don’t forget that you have to establish authority in your niche. You can’t hope to do that if you’re not skilled in your domain. So, try to balance your aspirations with market needs and find a bestseller topic.


metrics research on how creating an online course

2. Identify Measurable Learning Outcomes

Would a learner be willing to hand over money for a course that doesn’t have clearly-defined objectives?

Of course not.

You should clearly define and communicate your course goals to participants before they enroll. You can foster trust and transparency in this way. 

If you’re a newbie, goal setting is as important for you as it is to learners. If you set measurable and attainable goals, you won’t feel overwhelmed during content creation. You know where you are headed and you’ll feel a sense of satisfaction when your goals are met. 

The thing you need to keep in mind is to promise what you can deliver. Keep your goals specific but manageable. You don’t want to overpromise and land in disputes later on. So outline your learning outcomes smartly.


3. Create or Curate Content

Next comes the content production phase. There are many content formats suitable for delivering online courses. However, videos are the most effective delivery method. 

Why, you ask?

The human brain is hard-wired for visuals. 

Videos give a multi-dimensional experience by combining text with moving images. The impact is strong and long-lasting.

You can use Wideo to create super-effective videos. You can cut, edit, splice, and fuse clips together. Add branding elements and stunning effects to cut professional-looking videos.

Teaching through animated videos. They use gamification to make learning a foreign language a fun experience. 



Here are some types of videos you can create for your course:

Video Interviews

Short and crisp interviews with subject matter experts and thought leaders are always engaging. You can also create a mashup of excerpts from different interviews. 



 To teach technical processes, tutorial videos are the most effective. You can also use them for troubleshooting and introducing new products or features. Bite-sized tips and hacks are another great application of demos.  Note: Learn how to add subtitles to your videos, videos with subtitles perform better and are more inclusive.



Animated Videos

To get your course participants up and running, opt for interactive animated videos. There are boundless possibilities of including animation in your online course. 

Duolingo has nailed online

duolingo app

If you’re not familiar with video editing, ready-to-use templates by Wideo are your best bet. Select the templates that fit your industry and teaching objective. 

For example, if you’re creating an onboarding training course for a company, use Wideo’s Slideshow Maker. You can create delightful presentation decks and add interactivities mid-course.

If you’re building a distance education course, Wideo’s educational module is a good choice. You can break the passive learning model and engage learners in highly-charged lessons.

It’s also a good idea to do blended teaching where the presenter switches between lectures, video presentations, questionnaires, and activities. While deciding on your content format(s), consider factors like learner level and topic to be taught. 


4. Decide on the Pricing

Your course’s pricing can directly impact its saleability and your revenue. If you undercharge, you’ll be undermining your effort. If you overcharge, your course might not have many takers. 

While deciding the pricing, take into account your effort and investment. Also, compare the price you have in mind with industry benchmarks. It will also help if you know how much your competitors are charging for similar courses. 


How Can You Promote Your Online Course?

Before launching your course, it’s important to promote it aggressively.

When it comes to promotion, nothing works like email marketing. It gives an average ROI of $40 per $1 spent. Create email campaigns to promote your course among your email contacts. Add buttons in your emails so that people can launch the course from the inbox itself.


table with roi data


Cross-promote your course on all your social accounts. If you’ve got multiple accounts, social media management tools can help you juggle them. You’ll be able to track how many people engaged with your promotional posts and respond quickly to their questions.

You can also give early-bird discounts and bundle offers to attract more buyers. Teaser videos can also help you create buzz about your course. You can also collaborate with influencers in your niche to promote your course among their followers and groups. 

Continue promoting your course after the launch. Put together your course highlights in a podcast for auditory learners. Host ask-me-anything (AMA) sessions on your social accounts to get people to talk about your course.

Build a positive online presence using guest blogging services. Guest blogging helps to drive organic traffic to your website and is a must in your content marketing strategy. It allows you to expose your brand to new audiences, boost your reputation in SEO by building high-quality links from sites with lots of traffic to your own pages.



Over to You

Creating an online course can be exciting and daunting at the same time. Your journey from a budding course creator to a seasoned one can be smooth if you follow the steps I’ve outlined in this article.

Do you need me to answer any questions about online courses or marketing? Let me know in the comments. I’ll get back to you soon.

Are you ready to discover the power of video? Try Wideo and create your own videos today. 

shane barker profile

Shane Barker

Is a digital marketing consultant for 15 years with an emphasis on Influencer Marketing in the last 5 years. He is specialized in sales funnels, targeted traffic and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, Influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.

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