The month is speeding by! Day 5 already… which means I have 25 days left to create and launch my online course 😱
Just so you know what this is all about, I’ve decided to add daily updates to the blog, in case it’s helpful for someone else who is doing a sprint course creation mission! I’m writing up a detailed outline of what I’m doing and why.
If you’re reading this and not aware of the what the Epic 30 Day Course Building Challenge is all about, check this post here first.
And, if you want to get daily updates sent to you via email not only will that fill your inbox with awesomeness from me, I’d appreciate the cheer squad 📣 Sign up below.
So this is now Day 6 that I am actually getting around to writing the update from Day 5, as I spent most of the day catching up on my actual client work - which does take priority over course creation, no matter how much fun that is!
That also means I’ve lost a big chunck of my weekend, so I’ll be having a late night tonight to catch up!
Day 6 was all about the marketing and creating a detailed strategy I have decided getting the key marketing strategies in place BEFORE the actual course creation will be the way to go.
Marketing strategy for course launch
It really is no wonder some people get a project manager to help them pull course launches together, as there are a LOT of moving parts!
Those huge launches by people like Marie Forleo and Amy Porterfield must be planned out months in advance with a whole team to do the work!
It is easy to think you could create an awesome course and have a six or seven figure launch like they do, but it just isn’t reality.
For my first course, I’ll be happy with 4 figures and if I crack $10k, I’m taking the kids on a holiday! I think that is far more realistic - especially with no course creation and launch experience behind me. Oh yeah and I’m doing this from a start point of pretty much zero audience.
I absolutely realise that without an audience to sell too, I’d be lucky to get 2 people signing up for the course, so marketing and list building MUST come first..
I don’t want to spend a heap on FB ads either - not just because I hate facebook, I don’t have enough confidence to pull off a DIY facebook ads campaign and I don’t have enough time to learn this month (though it is on my education list for the next 3 months). Plus I don’t have the budget to pay thousands for an ads manager to do it for me.
So, this is what I will be doing.
focusing on My current favourite platform. Pinterest
Until 2 months ago, I thought Pinterest was where you went to waste time looking for cool nail art, recipe ideas, inspo quotes and craft projects. I really didn’t understand just how powerful (and AWESOME) it is at driving traffic to your website. It’s really just a visual search engine.
I have spent a LOT of the last month learning pretty much everything I can about Pinterest, then experimenting like crazy and those experiments are already paying off!
I created my account just five weeks ago and already Pinterest is driving one third of my website traffic and I’ve barely even put up any pins yet.
I’ve been growing my boards, optimising everything, researching, researching and more researching. Got a little obsessive over it almost, but now, I’m SO glad I did.
(by the way, if you did want to follow me on Pinterest - that would be awesome!) 👍
This is my plan…
I’ve only experimented with promoted pins by accident so far (I was checking out the options and didn’t realise I had actually created a promoted pin until I saw one particular pin with thousands of views 😹).
The thing about promoted pins is that if someone sees your promoted pin and repins it, that pin can get further repinned long after you stop paying to promote it, which means you get extra exposure for FREE!
This is especially valuable as I intend to make this course evergreen and use all the funnels I am setting up now, after the initial launch. If someone clicks on the pin, it will still link to the landing page you set up, which is pretty cool.
They are also fairly inexpensive to promote (especially compared to Facebook/Instagram!)
My intention is to create some pins as per the strategy below and then promote them at $2 a day per pin for 10 days ($12 a day) for a total budget of $120. Hopefully that will be enough!
I will create six separate pins for each strategy, post them all and see how they go organically for a few days, then pick the three best performing pins and promote them. No point promoting a pin that is getting isn’t going well organically, as it is less likely to go well when promoted as well.
Pin Strategy 1
Create a start a business checklist as a lead magnet.
My reasearch shows these types of pins/lead magnets are super popular not just on pinterest, but generally and this will be a great free resource for my site/blog regardless of what happens with the course.
That pin will then link through to a landing page that I will create in Convert Kit (I’m also participating in the Convert Kit 30 day Landing Page challenge this month and I would be STOKED to win $5k).
Once they get the download, that will then put them on a sequence for the delivery of the checklist and I can create a little 3 email nurture series after that and invite them to my free masterclass (see below)
Pin Strategy 2
Create an evergreen webinar/masterclass on starting an online business.
This may be biting off more than I can chew, as I’ve never done a webinar before. It seems to be a lot of work to create all the slides etc for the webinar and I’m unfamiliar with the tech.
Again, like FB ads, learning this stuff is on my radar for this quarter, but not sure my brain is going to cope with this on top of the Conversion Copywriting courses I’m doing (which I think is more critical to making this lauch a success).
But if I can figure it out and not spend (waste) too much time on learning how to do it, then it would be a great idea and brilliant lead magnet.
Again, it could be used as an ever green masterclass to drive some sales in the future.
So, if I do this, my traffic strategy will be:
Figure out how to create the evergreen webinar (tech wise). Then create the content/slides. Then record it.
Then create the Convert Kit landing page and put them through a pre webinar email series and a post webinar email series (that I will need to write). Fark! It is a LOT of work now that I write it all out!
Once that is ready, use the same six pin strategy and promote the best performing three.
Whilst it is a lot of work, it can be used into the future, so it’s not like it would be just for this launch, which is good.
Pin Strategy 3
My giveaway! 🥳
I got this up and running yesterday which is exciting!
Creating an amazing competition, won’t just automatically get entries (and importantly email addresses) unless it is promoted and gets exposure. So I need to get this out there!
By the way, if you want to win $1595 worth of business coaching and strategy, I highly recommend you enter by the way, it is a pretty awesome prize! 😊
So Pinterest promoted pins is my main plan for exposure.
Again I will create six pins, see which ones perform best and promote the three best. Not sure on the budget for this, I will start at $1 per day per pin and see how many sign ups I get to see if I need to increase it.
A small issue is that because of the software/workaround, entrants don’t automatically go on the list due to the 25 words or less thing (as I have no way to say you’ll be added to the list which is against spam regulations) so instead I’ve given a strong incentive that they get extra bonus entries, as signing up to the newsletter is optional.
Hopefully that will work and I’ll get people on my list (or at least my socials) so I can encourage list sign ups on social.
Will it work? I hope so.
I will also set up a semi permanent landing page for the competition, as this one is a launch comp, so will only be open until mid May.
Then my plan is to get the licenses I need to run it properly, so I can set up a lead magnet for a straight giveaway/raffle and keep it on my site as lead magnet for subscribers without the hassle of workarounds.
This is also another tool in my weapons chest.
I was a bit cynical about Tailwind when I first started looking into Pinterest best practices, as it seems to be pretty hyped.
But I have discovered that is for good reason.
So far I have spent $15 USD on tailwind and my Pinterest account is at 40k views per month.
There is NO WAY I would have that much pinterest traffic just manual pinning (unless I was spending hours every single day).
The two things about tailwind I am digging is tailwind tribes and smart loops.
With tribes, you join a group of other pinners - generally around a shared interest (one of the tribes I joined is called Internet Marketing Super Friends). Everyone puts their pins in the group, which creates a huge resource of awesome pins to schedule (really easily). The stat I hear is that you should be pinning 80% other peoples content and 20% your own content.
Most of the tribes have rules - such as for every pin you add, you need to share two other pins. So you need to keep a ratio of 2:1 for example.
The few pins that I have added to my tribes have been reshared by other members of the tribe - so far I’ve had over 60 repins to popular boards. There is no way to expect that many repins on a brand new account otherwise. You’re relying on the pinterest algorthim to pick your pin out of the millions of pins that show up in the feed.
This way - your pin gets exposure and you give other people’s pins exposure. Awesome all round.
So since I joined up to tailwind a month ago, I’ve been pinning from my tribes like crazy! Which means I have an awesome ratio and for the next month while I am promoting my launch and course, I can just pin my own pins and not need to pin others. I built up a bit of a bank.
For example I’ve posted 6 pins in one tribe and shared 82, which means I can post another 35 more of my own pins before I need to share any others.
But! It will cost me to go unlimited. My current plan only allows for 200 tribe pins per month. I am in 17 different tribes, and already up to 80 submissions, so I only have 7 submissions per tribe left for the month, which isn’t going to be enough for my multiple pins.
I can go unlimited but that is an extra $45 per month. I think it will be worth it though and will sign up for that once my current limit is reached.
Smart Loops is another cool feature, where you can add your pins to a loop and they get auto scheduled to get reposted to your boards (and group boards if you’re a member of those). This is a HUGE timesaver and ensures your pins are circulating pinterest constantly. It is more of a long term benefit of tailwind, not so much for this launch strategy, but will be AMAZING for the evergreen funnels after the main launch.
Pin strategy 4
And just in case all that wasn’t enough, I came up with a back up pin strategy, that also works as an evergreen/ongoing resource going forward.
I have noticed that pins such as “The 10 tools you need to run your Online Business” are really popular and get lots of repins.
I have been meaning to create a resource guide for the site anyway (it is a WIP page at the moment), so I was thinking to pull finger on that and create The Ultimate Resource Guide for Running Your Online Business as a post. I’ve spent a crazy amount of time researching software tools and options over the last few years, I know the pros and cons of each etc.
This would be a pretty big post though and take a day to create (if I’m going to do it properly, as I’d like to explain why I use/recomment one tool over others), so not sure when I’ll be able to find the time to do that.
To get the all important subscribers on board, I’ve got a banner to the giveaway on the top of my site, plus I’ll see if I can also create the resource guide as a PDF download lead magnet.
Having this as a resource guide for the site anyway, so that is driving me to think its a good idea to produce it. Also, some of the products I use and recommend have affiliate programs, so I might make a little $$ out of it as well which can go to the family holiday fund ⛱️
Again, I’ll create six pins, then promote the three best performers.
Sales Page Creation
I’ve also decided to create the sales page BEFORE I create the course materials, as having a shit hot sales page is fairly critical to the success of this whole thing.
Because I’m a bit of a DIY queen, I will be doing this myself.
I need to decide if I’ll do this on squarespace - which may let me make it look better, but will require some extra tech… A checkout page (I have a lifetime access to thrive cart so can use that) plus then use Zapier to auto enroll my students to teachable.
Or just do it on teachable and use their checkout.
I was leaning to squarespace with the extra link ups, but I’ve been looking at a few course sales pages the last few days from big names in the online course industry (who are using teachable sales pages) and they can actually look pretty decent. I mean if it’s good enough for Pat Flynn right?
I need to decide where to build the sales page in the next day or so, because creation needs to be completed by April 10 - like finished and ready to go.
That way I can start sending traffic there and instead of a buy now button, I can put an “add me to the waitlist” button. I will offer an early bird bonus as an incentive to get notified, which gives me a bit of an idea of if the page is converting, and gets names on my list.
I do want to get further through my copy school modules for 10X Sales Pages and 10X launches before I do that, as I know having those courses behind me will make the copy SOOOOOOOO much better! Again, it is a matter of time and fitting it in.
Will I be better using my time to learn how to make a sales page better (and use the formulas they recommend for making a page) or spend the time on actually making it.
Lets see how that pans out! 😂
I still need to get a few things done to improve the giveaway in order to make that convert into the all important subscribers!
I realised today that the copy is not particularly compelling, so I want to rewrite (and simplify) that to make it clearer/more enticing.
Once that is done, I’ll create an appropriate graphic to make it more visually appealing.
I still need to
create a landing page on my website to host the competition
add a link to the competition to all past blog posts (and put a reminder in Asana to take them off again after the competition is finished)
create some more graphics in canva to use for social media promotion (good idea to schedule some posts to promote the competition and encourage entries)
write/create the welcome email / nurture series in Convert Kit
figure out how to stop the Gleam confirmation emails that go to customers from being super ugly and using a gross green font. Not yet worked out how to fix that - though it probably isn’t really worth spending time on - my perfectionism rearing it’s ugly head!
Day 5 numbers update
11 Email Subscribers no change
5 Landing Page Conversions no change
77 Pinterest Followers 🔼 8
61 Facebook fans no change 🔼 6 (see - my time spent in FB groups isn’t wasted 😂)
39 Instagram followers 🔽1 (sad face)
1 Twitter 🔽1 (another sad face)
2 Coffees ☕ 🔽1 (a good thing - I could sleep last night!)
That’s it! I’ll check in again tomorrow, with some detailed updates!
Please comment below if you’ve got any questions, or just want to cheer me on 🎊 I appreciate your support!
Til then, Sue x
Just a heads up
Posts on The Unicorn Assistant may contain affiliate links, but I’m a no bullshit affiliate kinda gal, as you can read about in my affiliate disclaimer.
The few $$ I make from affiliate income, costs you absolutely nothing and goes straight to our family holiday fund ✈️ so my kids and I thank you 💗