Law #1: Validate your idea
The better you validate your idea, the more success you'll see. You need to be certain that there's a viable market for your program and that people are willing to pay for it.
Law #2: People pay for results not information
The reason why people are willing to pay premium prices for online courses is because they want to expedite the process of getting from where they are to where they want to be.
After all, time is money!
So what your customers are paying for when they purchase your program isn't an encyclopedia of information. They're paying for a step-by-step game plan that's going to get them to the desired result.
Therefore, when you're creating your online course, your focus needs to be on these three things:
- What actions do my customers need to take in order to achieve that desired result?
- What do they need to know in order to take those actions?
- What other tools, resources, or support can I give them to help expedite the process or make it easier to take that action?
The reason why online courses are so much more valuable than a book or webinar is because instead of just teaching information and having your customers consume passively, you're giving them an implementation plan, or strategic framework to follow that will help them get to that desired result much sooner than they would be able to on their own.
Law #3: Outline before anything else
The right structure can make or break you. Do yourself a huge favor and put in the work up front to create a complete outline before you begin to create any content.
Law #4: The mindset of just in time learning.
If you try to figure out the answers to everything before you actually start taking action, you're never going to finish. I completely understand the value of having clarity on the big picture, but trying to figure out the intricate details of how you're going to connect your payment processor to your membership site before you even have your content created is just a form of procrastination.
On top of that, technology is changing so rapidly that there's a high probability that information is going to be completely outdated by the time you're actually ready to put it to use.
Learn what you need to to take the next step forward and leave the rest for when the time comes. Trust me, you'll figure it out when you get there!
Law #5: Set a deadline and make a plan.
Parkinson's law holds so true here: "Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion"
If you don't have a deadline, the work will drag on for eternity. Therefore, it's critical that you set a launch date, make a plan, and work the plan.
Law #6: Get support
The only shortcut to success in any area of your life is by learning from people that already know what you want to know. This is why I've had mentors since day one of starting my businesss.
Don't sell yourself short by setting yourself up for failure and trying to learn everything on your own.
Law #7: Content first, design later support
Under no circumstances should you ever, ever, ever try to create your content and simultaneously try to make it look pretty. This is a recipe for disaster.
Instead, you need to create the ugly version first.
Meaning, when you're creating your worksheets or your lessons slides, first create them in a google doc with one color (black) and one font. Then, when the content is finished, you can spend the time designing them and making them look exactly how you want them to look.
Law #8: build your tribe
The philosophy of "If I build it, they will come." will not serve you well here. Growing your audience and strengthening your relationship with them will always be an extremely important part of business. Go ahead and start now.
Law #9: form strategic partnerships
We are always stronger together than we are on our own, so start thinking about other people or businesses that are already serving your target audience. How you can come together to provide more value and help cross promote each other's programs, products or services?
Law #10: implement a complete strategy
The difference between the course theaters that are making millions of dollars every time they launch and the ones that are struggling to make just a few sales is that the first are going about this with a complete strategy in mind. There's a business model behind that online course.