I’m now an online course fanatic.

I used to watch YouTube videos to learn whatever I needed to make my life work better — at work, at home, digitally, cosmetically — before Teachable, Udemy, Rainmaker, Thinkific, WP Courseware, Ruzuku, Pathwright, Digital Chalk and others made it so easy for experts to offer courses where I could dig into a subject and spend a few hours rather than a few minutes.

My biggest problem, though, is choosing from among all of the options.

Take my latest search for a course on time management. I started on Udemy and found pages of courses. Many of the instructors are very savvy and get my attention right away while others barely register as I scroll down the screen.

What is the difference between mediocre marketing and brilliant marketing?

The courses that stand out have these advantages:

  1. Solve a specific problem. I may be searching with a very broad topic, like time management, but the truth is that my need is pretty specific. I find that I fall down a rabbit hole every time I start going through my emails. When I see a course called “More Time Less Stress: Effective Email Management” I pounce!
  1. Target a specific group of people. As the saying goes, you can make all of the people happy some of the time and some of the people happy all of the time, but you can’t make all of the people happy all of the time. To make sure I’m going to be happy with the course, I need to make sure that those who already took it are like me. I read the reviews and see “This is the first course I’ve taken designed specifically for working mothers” and “I like rules and procedures and this course’s curriculum is perfect for those of us who like systems”, I knew I was in the right place.
  1. Attract a large following. The number of enrolled students is evidence to me that the people buying this course must find it priced well or they wouldn’t have made the purchase.
  1. Buying the course at full price – not a discount. This is a biggie to me. If everyone buys the course only when it’s marked down to some major sale price, then I hesitate. Impulse buying a course that will expect me to spend hours with the instructor, is not my style.

So now my options have been widdled down to one screen of 6 courses.

What is the brilliant message that makes the course I choose stand out from the crowd?

  1. Evidence of expertise – The instructors who stand out from the crowd offer prospective students like me a wealth of evidence that they have been helping people solve my problem successfully and have the evidence to back that up. They don’t need to have published 10 books on the subject, but they do need to prove to me that this is both their vocation and avocation, which leads to the next brilliant message.
  1. Love of the subject — I know that most successful instructors take the time to create and run courses in order to make money. The value they provide deserves compensation; I have no problem with that. However, I’m concerned if I get the sense from the message that getting me to sign up is their primary focus. Instructors who clearly love what they are teaching have always been my favorites and if I’m going to be spending hours watching their lectures, I want to enjoy my time with them.
  1. Desire to make their students successful. It’s #3Desire to make their students successful — that converts my potential interest into a “you-got-me-at-it-starts-on-Monday” buyer. There is nothing as powerful as knowing that my success at solving my problem is the primary reason that the instructor is teaching the class. 

3 Course features that proves the instructor wants me to succeed

  • It’s easy to ask questions and get answers
  • There’s a simple way to connect directly with the instructor
  • The course can be customized for me

That’s where bundling an AdviceCoach App with the course would make all the difference in the world. If I knew that I could download an app which would

— remind me about the main lessons of the course,

— make it easy to schedule the work,

— track my progress, and

— let me share my success on social media

I would sign up in a heartbeat….and pay more for the course because the App just added tremendous value and makes it much more likely that I will follow through on what I learn. [What is AdviceCoach app’s Story? http://bit.ly/2nhaE9r] The AdviceCoach app is also a great place to connect with the instructor, ask questions and learn about the upcoming courses coming on-line which will take me to the next level. I could connect with other students and share with them my tips and questions to get their input and build community with other students.

Imagine, being reminded of the steps of the course at my fingertips with an app!! Since I’m spending time and money to learn something new, I would love an app to help me act on the advice and solve my problem.

So, brilliant course creators, check out AdviceCoach.com/coursecreators and show us — your students — that you are committed to doing whatever it takes to help us succeed.