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Are you full of knowledge and inspiration to share about something – from getting kids to take a nap to meditation or organizing your business finances? What's that one thing that you can talk about for-ev-er without stopping to take a break?
Instead of trying to cram all of that knowledge into 100,000 blog posts or one teeny tiny checklist, you may want to use a mini-course as your email upgrade.
What is a Mini-Course?
A mini-course is a short series of lessons (usually from 3-7 modules) that help your subscribers achieve a specific goal. They're often sent as a series of emails, although you can also host them on an educational platform like MemberVault if you would rather.
What are some examples of good mini-courses?
This is not an all-encompassing list, but here are some mini-course examples to get your creative juices flowing. Mini-courses aren't just for business-to-business! Note – I have not taken all of these courses, so this is not an endorsement of them. Just a list to help inspire you and see the wide range of options out there!
- 5 Days to a Healthy New Start
- How to Remember Japanese Vocabulary
- Graphic Design Mini-Course
- 3-Day Primer for Starting Potty Training
- Meditation for Life Mini-Course
- Creating a Digital Home Management System
- The Minimum Viable Offer Approach
How does a mini-course grow your list?
A mini-course can be the incentive for someone to join your email list – just like a printable or ebook. Usually, mini-courses have a higher perceived value than a simple printable or checklist because it's got multiple parts. You can also have a landing page JUST for your mini-course that you can share on social media.
Ok – so how do I create a mini-course?
Step 1: Define the outcome for the subscriber. The first thing you need to understand when creating your mini-course is what outcome your subscribers are looking for. You've probably already identified some of those big outcomes for your larger paid products. Think about your mini-course as the appetizer for your paid dinner party. (If you're a Costco shopper, this is those samples that they hand out in every aisle on the weekend!)
At the end of the course, they should have a taste of success – and should know, like and trust you for future training and products.
Step 2: Identify small actions to get them there. For most mini-courses, your subscriber shouldn't need to spend more than 15-20 minutes to take that day's action. Flylady has a great first step – never go to bed with a dirty kitchen sink. Most of us should be able to get that cleaned up within a few minutes. For a handwriting mini-course I took, I had practice words that I had to reach 10x each. I could always do more but there were SMALL actions that I could take to get better each day.
Step 3: Outline where they go from here. The worst thing is to finish up a course and not have a clear next step. Do you have a paid product they can move onto? Is there a simple practice they can continue? Make sure in your action plan you've got a few options for next steps for your enthusiastic course takers!
Step 4: Figure out the best delivery method. Is it easier to explain the actions and desired outcomes with a video? Written? Or some combination of both? Think about your ideal customer's learning style, how much time they have to invest, and even where they're likely to be when they're engaging with your course. I prefer written content, even if there is associated video. Sometimes I read faster than the examples or want to catch up in a quiet environment.
Step 5: Create your content! This is the fun part! Outline your scripts and record your videos, write your lessons, and take your screenshots. If your steps need any worksheets or printables, make sure you create those too.
Step 6: Set your mini-course up for delivery. If you're sending everything out in emails using automation (like in ActiveCampaign, Ontraport, or ConvertKit), then get your emails set up and your opt-in form created. If you're using a traditional learning management system or course platform (like Membervault), then you'll need to get everything uploaded and build that tech connection between your email list and the course provider.
Step 7: Promote, promote, promote. This is the fun part – getting people to TAKE your mini-course! Start with a beta of a warm audience to get their feedback. Then get that mini-course on your most popular blog posts, your social media, and your website sidebar to start getting people through the door!
Have more questions? Drop me a line. And be sure to join my newsletter list – never miss a blog post, and get access to the HeyBrandi resource library.
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