Today we’re going to talk about how to create online courses from scratch, allowing you to sell your experience and knowledge and all of that good stuff to help make transformations in other people’s lives, which I’m pretty excited about. I mean, right now is the time to be packaging your training and material and knowledge and all of that stuff. There has never been a better time. People are opening up to digital training, and that is exciting.

Digital training is selling so well right now. I was just telling one of our clients that we had them put together a book. Yesterday we talked about selling eBooks and creating and selling eBooks. I had him create and sell eBooks or create an eBook over the last couple of weeks. It was all just basic stuff that he has had in his repertoire for a while. We’re putting together the sales material and sales videos and upsells and all that stuff for it because that’s what you get when you’re a client of ours, which is pretty cool.

Today we were talking about creating online courses – namely how to create online courses, video courses. Basically, he has a plethora of video information, video stuff as well, so we were talking about different ways you can package it and then sell it as an upsell offer.

I wanted to go through and talk about how to create online courses and why video courses are important and how to go through and create those video courses and get the ball rolling.

For those of you who are new to me, we pick up people watching this show every single day. My name is Jason Drohn. I created a website called Done For You. We do a lot of sales funnels, marketing, we run traffic. To put it very simply, we clarify marketing messages, we build automated sales funnels, and we understand and track data, so we add stories and we make stories make sense from the data so that we can optimize and split test and all that other stuff. That is kind of the real high-level view of what we do. But what we’re going to do is dig into some of the stuff that makes what we do tick, which is digital products.

create online courses
We are going to talk about how to create online courses and setting up video courses from scratch. Video courses are the norm. They’re the standard in digital training. It used to be eBooks and it used to be audio programs. Half of those cabinets are filled up with audio programs from clients that we’ve digitized and stuff that I have bought over the years, audio programs, video programs, DVD programs.

Now everything, for the most part, is locked behind a membership login. The stuff is created digitally, it lives digitally, it is fulfilled digitally. There is no cost of fulfillment. You don’t need to worry about CDs or recording studios or anything. This mic is all you need. That’s it. They’re easy to create. You just have to know how the pieces come together.

Oftentimes they’re supplemented with PDFs and eBooks. The written stuff is a supplement to the video course. So you deliver the video and then you can give the transcript as a supplement, as a PDF that somebody can download, print out, highlight, all of that stuff.

Video also lends itself to higher product prices. It used to be just literally having a video course meant you could charge $2,000. From a perception standpoint, having an on-demand video course library was huge. Not so anymore. Now, 10 years later, you don’t have video, you’re doing something wrong. Having a video, of course, is definitely what you need to do now.

One of the major benefits:

The video has the capability of teaching people in the modality that they most like to see.

You do voice, of course, because you’re listening to it. You can do the visuals. I mean most of what we see we pick up from body language. Then you can also do textual, meaning you can get the course transcribed and now you have a text copy of what the videos are. That becomes your manual, your training manual.

There is in some niches, the training manual is the thing, it’s the gold, you know what I mean? The physical box products. I’m thinking about real estate investing. Those higher-end products, now they’re delivering their video digitally. Speaking of real estate clients. But yeah, the book is sent to them through the mail or they leave the event with the training manual in hand that they can go and highlight and stuff.

Even my wife, she’s doing a fitness certification and they still have the book, and the book isn’t required. The book is a free plus shipping offer in addition to the digital training. But she’s pretty pumped up about the books. I think a lot of your customers are going to be the same way. What you can do is you can record the course and then get the book transcribed and then you can go through and turn that into your manual, the thing that you’re going to be using to train from.

People prefer Videos

Now that broadband internet is the standard, people prefer videos as opposed to reading PowerPoints and training for them. Not to mention they’re used to watching YouTube videos and in lots of cases learning from YouTube videos. I mean, how many times in the last month have you gone to YouTube and searched for something? You’ve looked for an instructional video about X?

I was just on YouTube this morning trying to figure out how to make a bootable USB drive for my Mac. Let’s see, the last thing, repairing ceilings, because I put my foot through the wall, walking on the attic above it, or put my foot through the ceiling. All kinds of instructional stuff on YouTube. People are used to watching YouTube videos. We’re used to watching some videos for instructional material. Now that brings up an important caveat. The thing that you’re teaching should not be available… It can be available on YouTube. The complexity of your offer, one video can be there and it should paint a picture of one particular thing.

But your entire course has value in that it’s a bunch, it’s 60 videos or 30 videos or 12 videos that talk about solving that one particular problem and putting somebody through a formula or putting somebody through a process. It isn’t one video as a standalone video. It is great and it makes sense, but at the same time, it’s incomplete. It’s useful, but incomplete, which is how to create online courses. So UBI, meaning that it is useful but incomplete. It is a collection of eight videos that is useful unto themselves, but it’s only complete if they also purchase the upsell. So it’s just something to think about.

Making a Video Training

With video training you can record your screen/presentation, you can record your voice. Currently, I’m recording all three. Voice, screen, and camera using StreamYard, but you can use it with Camtasia and ScreenFlow. We’re going to talk about that software towards the end of this. But at the very minimum, you should be recording your screen. Very, very minimum. And then you can create these PowerPoint presentations or these keynote slides relatively easily.

1. Brainstorm a Topic

Doing video training’s largely the same as an ebook. First, you want to brainstorm a topic. You want to go through, figure out what you want to talk about. You want to mind map that thing and figure it out. Kind of storyboard it.

  • Where are your users now and where are they going?
  • How are they finding you?

Let’s get everybody on the same page. Like we did yesterday in the eBook. Let’s get everybody on the same page in that first chapter and do a discovery module.

Then from the discovery, where are we going next? What is the next thing? So after you standardize everything, what is the next thing they need to learn or discover from you to experience that transformation that you are helping them achieve?

2. Create a training outline or a mind map

3. Create the PowerPoint slides from that mind map

It ends up being a very linear process. Create the mind map, then you create the PowerPoint slides from that mind map, that brainstorming session. And then, once you kind of flesh out the PowerPoint slides, let them sit for a couple of days and then you record them. Very similar to this.

4. Start Recording

I mean I’m recording PowerPoint slides. Use a video camera to record those things, and then you can use a piece of software Camtasia or ScreenFlow to edit that video, edit that screen capture. Basically how it works is the software captures everything like layers. You have an audio layer, a video layer, and then another video layer. So you have audio and one video layer is your camera feed.

The other video layer is your screen feed. You can mix and match, cut, you can move some stuff around so you can drop your camera or the screen layer or whatever, wherever you want. I’ll show you a little bit of that. If I can get ScreenFlow to work without messing up my camera. But we can do that. Then you just edit up the video, you export it as an MP4 file and then you can go on from there. Then you encode it as MP4. You upload it to a server.

create online courses

Stream Your Video

There’s a couple of different places you can stream video from. Wistia is a video streaming place. We would recommend not putting your course videos on YouTube, just because they’re not protected.

They are protected in that nobody is going to look. You can make them so that they’re unpublished, meaning they’re not published, they’re not publicly viewable on YouTube, but they’re still there. If somebody has a link, they can go and find it.

1. Wistia

What we do is we use Wistia, which Wistia, the videos are locked inside Wistia, and then the only way for the video to play is if it’s embedded on a page, which makes it nice because then your videos truly are private. And then Wistia also, you can download the videos out of Wistia if you know how, but not many people do.

2. Vimeo

Vimeo has a pro account and I like Vimeo just because it’s cheaper from a per video standpoint. So Vimeo’s pro accounts, you can also do the same thing. You can upload the videos, you can do some light editing in there. And then it also protects your videos because they’re not publicly viewable on Vimeo.

It gives you some nice stats too. Those are the two places that we end up having for our video courses.

Selling Your Videos

Now in terms of selling your videos, there are lots of different ways that you can monetize your video content once it’s out.

1. Individually

So, of course, you can sell your videos individually. You can sell them for $4 and 95 cents or a dollar or $10 or $20 or $1000 if you want to not sell any. You can sell them for 1000 bucks apiece.

2. Group / Package

You can sell them as a group so they’re all fulfilled on the same webpage. And we have a little course called a funnel flow made simple for sale for $4 and 95 cents that is that that’s a collection of eight videos. We sell them for five bucks. They’re 20, 25 minutes apiece and it walks through sales funnel setups. Hugely valuable, it’s great in terms of a learning curve.

It’s great in terms of getting people actionable quickly, and it’s five bucks. I mean it’s cheaper than a cup of coffee. It makes a lot of sense there. You can sell them as collections. They’re simply fulfilled on the same webpage too. So it’s one video and then you know… It’s all the videos and then they can just pop open the video and watch the video and then close it and that’s it.

You can protect them behind a webpage or a membership site. You don’t necessarily have to. If they’re not publicly viewable and it’s five bucks and it’s a collection of videos. Does it need to be? Maybe, maybe not. You can also set it up inside of a membership site and then deliver those videos either as one chunk. So let’s say somebody spends $97, they get access to all your videos, your entire course, all at the same time. So they get modules one, two, three, four, five. Boom.

They get access to all of it at the same time. Or you can drip them out. Module one goes out, week one, module two goes out, week two, module three goes out week three. Lots of ways to set it up this way. Kajabi is a great one. Kajabi works nicely. Teachable works nicely too for two pieces of software that will help with how to create online courses on your own and you don’t mind paying for software monthly.

We like using WordPress and a membership plugin like Wishlist Member, and then having the videos fulfill from Vimeo, but Teachable and Kajabi is kind of a low… It’s software, so it’s high tech, but from an experience standpoint, you don’t need a whole lot of experience to set it up.

Those are probably the two platforms that I would default to if you’re trying to set all this up and you’re not real good with your websites, Teachable or Kajabi is to going to work out well. And they also have a video hosting baked in, so you don’t need an outside Vimeo account or a Wistia account for those. And then, of course, they’re locked behind a membership login. Lots of ways to set up the fulfillment of your course.

You’re more than welcome to set up a call with us and we’ll go through it. So, let me just drop a banner here. You can set up an action plan call and we will go through this stuff with you. Let’s see or check out my ticker,, that’s pretty cool, right?

I think I’m going to let that one ride for a little bit. Video training or you can send them a DVD through the mail. It’s a legacy option. It is what it is. You can use a service like to automate this. You upload an ISO file and they burn it and send it. It’s pretty cool. But who the hell uses DVDs anymore? From an archival standpoint, it might make sense.

Best Practices on Creating Online Courses

Now, some best practices with how to create online courses. Lengths can be whatever you prefer. It can be long videos or short videos. It doesn’t matter. Most people shorter videos, 5 to 10 minutes. I have a couple of clients who insist that their videos are two minutes to three minutes because they want short, choppy.

That way somebody can go back and watch them. I put a lot less thought into how long the video is as opposed to how much information is in the video. And I also create a lot of videos now, so I don’t necessarily think that. I think two to three-minute videos are great for social media. They’re great for all that stuff and maybe someday I’ll actually take all of this video content that I’m creating and chop it up into smaller snippets and then send it out to social media. Maybe someday, maybe not. I mean it’s whatever.

Most of our videos, when learning how to create online courses, most of our course content videos are 5 to 10 minutes. Some of them go a little bit longer. The ones that are more in-depth as in the material end up being more how-to and more structural and procedural, those typically go longer.

My dailies have been averaging 30 minutes. I think it’s an okay timeframe. It just depends on your personal preference. It depends on your audience. Prices are not set in stone for video training. Most membership sites, most video courses start at 97 bucks, while others are $1,997, so $2,000 video courses. It just depends on what kind of transformation you’re providing for your users, who your users are, what the value of your course is for them.

When determining how to create online courses There are business startup video courses that are 97 bucks and they make money through upsells. There is a bigger membership kind, of course, that is $197. There’s one launching right now, which everybody’s going crazy about. It’s a $2,000 offer, so it just depends on.

It depends probably more on how you’re going to sell it. I mean a $97 offers is all you need to sell it as a sales video. However, for a $1,997 offer, you need a webinar or you need multiple videos. You need a lot… Or even a sales call. You just need a lot more sales material to sell a $2,000 thing.

Now, let’s see. So thank you for the thumbs up. I’m getting a lot of thumbs up. I appreciate that. Paul, you’re in here too. That’s awesome. So some value adders for video training. Value maximizers if you will.

These are additional revenue opportunities that your video course can provide. Your video course should be sold as a standalone offer, of course. $97, 197, 297, 997, but then there are lots of ways that you can generate additional revenue from your video course if you choose and if they work for your business model. So your video course can stand alone. But to maximize the revenue you can augment coaching. This is called assisted coaching. We’re going to talk probably next week about coaching and setting up coaching offers and selling coaching and services and stuff.

But with how to create online courses, you can sell it as your front-end offer and then you can add coaching into it. It might be $297 per month with a coaching element, and that coaching element can be group coaching, maybe once or twice a month. Also, it can be one on one coaching once or twice a month. It just depends on how often you want to get together with your folks, you know what I mean?

If it’s once a month or once every two weeks or even once a week for something higher price. You want to be very careful about doing this augmented coaching-assisted coaching model. You want to be careful when it comes to time equals money. So what I mean is you can sell a lot of digital courses. You can sell hundreds or even thousands of copies of your digital course every month. And if there’s a coaching element, you’re always going to be linked from a time standpoint.

Maybe at that point in how to create online courses, at the front end, and then you sell coaching services as an upsell for more money. You just have to think critically about how much time you have in a week and how much you’re going to be devoting to your clients and then what impact that’s going to have on the rest of your business and the rest of your life. It’s just something to be cognizant of.

Another thing you can add that people find a lot of value in is a Facebook group or community, to encourage interaction among members. The community piece, people will continue paying for… If you upsell a $97 Facebook group or a $97 community after a video course, people will continue paying the $97 just for the community, because they get that much out of the community. So it’s a good upsell. It’s a nice upsell to sell. You can also do group coaching or one on one coaching as an upsell. So this is straight up, no assistant coaching. This is you go through the course, it’s an eight-week course or whatever, and that’s going to be $997 and then I will coach you over here.

We might talk about some of the stuff from the course, but we’re going to be coaching on something different and it’s all one on one or it’s all group. So you can think of maybe a career course and then life coaching or a business development course and then life coaching. So the business development is part of life, but then coaching is life coaching. Do you know what I mean?

Then you can also include affiliate links inside of your membership area or your video area for additional commission-based revenue. This is passive. I was just talking to a client last week, and when we used to do a lot of this kind of stuff… We still do it here and there. It’s the biggest part of the business model. It used to be you sell the front end course and then you just crush affiliate links in it and then you make money from an affiliate link standpoint.

But now, when trying to help a client with how to create online courses for their business, what we do is we end up working Done For You or coaching or consulting or whatever into the video course itself. But before we did any of that stuff, we’d sell a front-end course and then we’d… The affiliate links inside the course would be for software, would be for other products, would be for things to help the member, the buyer get the result that we were trying to get for them.

For instance, we had a course on setting up an affiliate generating website. And then we used to promote the theme, the keyword research software, a bunch of other stuff inside the membership for them and then we ended up making a bunch of money. HostGator hosting is an easy one. If you have anything business development, you can link to HostGator and they’ll pay 110 bucks or a hundred whatever per new user. Or you can link to and they’ll pay 20, 25 bucks per new free trial or whatever. So there are lots of different ways that you can generate money from the affiliate links inside your membership.

Just some general thoughts about how to create online courses, I got another call so I got to get going. But you want to make sure that your videos are as secure as possible. Use Wistia or use to host your private videos and then publish them inside your membership site or use Teachable or Kajabi because they have their video hosting. You want to make sure to keep your videos on a private server, one that you control, so if you’re going to host your videos yourself or yourself, then use Amazon S3 for that. Amazon Web Services has an S3 platform. Maybe someday we’ll go into it. Don’t trust your money-making videos with public services like YouTube or Vimeo. Vimeo standard, notice Vimeo standard.

Make sure that your audio levels are pretty consistent in all of your packages, videos. Literally, this thing doesn’t leave this tripod and the sound is the same regardless of… Well, I try to make sure that the sound is… I know where the sound should be set, let’s put it that way. Use a good microphone. This is an Audio Technica AT2020? Yeah, AT2020. It’s about a hundred bucks on Amazon. Just search for it.

If I wanted to be diligent about doing exactly what I’m telling you about, I would have an affiliate link ready for this thing, and it might even be and then I would just drop it in the comments here so you can buy it, and then everybody watching the video later could buy it from that affiliate link. That is an example of using affiliate links in a course.

You want to transcribe your video’s audio into text, and is the platform that we use for all of that stuff. And again there’s another great affiliate opportunity. I have no idea if they even have an affiliate program. But if they do, I’m sure they owe me money. And some resources. Capturing, you want video… I think we’re going to end up doing. We’re going to do a resources video for video training tomorrow because I got a ton of video shit that I am going to go through. So we’re going to talk about capturing on video, webcams, mobile phones, all of that stuff, Camtasia software. So tomorrow is going to be creating video courses, number two and we’re going to talk about all the tools and stuff, because of this slide I could talk about for half an hour.

With that, did you like it today? Did you learn anything? All right, fantastic. We’re going to do part two of this video tomorrow. It is going to be resources and cameras and stuff, and I have nothing super high tech. It’s all pretty low-tech, but it works well. We’re going to talk about that and I will see you tomorrow, all right?

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