As the online learning industry continues to grow, more people are now able to make a living through teaching online. The music industry is no exception, and here we look at seven steps those interested in teaching online courses can get started building a business.
Guest post by Eduardo Yi
Online learning is a massive growing industry that’s projected to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Everywhere around the world, individuals are making a living through understanding how to teach online. If you’ve been interested in starting up a successful music business, you may have been curious about online courses.
I’ve been a part of the online teaching ecosystem from both the side of the instructor and of the software provider. This has allowed me to witness thousands of successful stories. In fact, our instructors have reached over three million students around the world and made over $50 million in sales.
If you’ve ever been curious about how this online-course business formula works, you’re in luck. Today I’ll be pulling back the curtains to show you a seven-step system that anyone can use to start up a music business online.
5 Reasons Musicians Should Build an Online Course
Over the years, we’ve noticed more and more musicians are drawn to creating courses online. And while a this online business model is considered very profitable, cash is only the tip of the iceberg. Here are five major reasons why musicians should teach online.
- Launching a course returns profits much more rapidly than starting a blog or even a YouTube channel. Online courses give you a high return on your investments while being easy to set up.
- Many people want to learn what you know. We all have our own combination of talents and knowledge that we can bring to others, whereas most people struggle to find the right topic to teach, musicians have the advantage of possessing a talent and skill that many are looking to develop.
- While traditional businesses models are tricky to scale, online courses are the perfect way to produce grow your income without needing to put in an incredible amount of work or investment. This is because online courses have low investment overheads and produce virtually no incremental cost per additional unit sold.
- Once you set up an online course, you have the chance to change and transform hundred of lives on autopilot. That means that you can help others while you’re asleep. This has drawn hundreds of talented musicians to create their own online courses.
- Owning your own course helps to build your personal brand as an authority figure inside of your market. Some online businesses spend years trying to become an authority in their industries. By having a course, you are directly demonstrating knowledge and mastery, which can immediately position you as an expert.
Now that I’ve explained more about how powerful online courses can be to create a successful business, it’s time for me to unveil our tried-and-tested roadmap to creating an successful online music education business.
7 Steps to Create a Successful Online Music Business
You can’t simply teach anything and make sustainable money through online business. It takes a little bit of patience and hard-work to set up a money machine online, but that doesn’t mean that it’s difficult to succeed as a new online instructor.
Your passion in life is music, and you probably know exactly what subject you’d like to teach. However, it’s best to create a course that’s designed for a specific type of musician.
- Are you looking to teach others how to play a specific genre?
- Are your lessons designed for experts or beginners?
- What are your students going to get after completing your course?
Answering these important questions will give you guidance towards building courses that people want to buy.
Another thing that’s important to note, is that you don’t necessarily need to teach people how to play an instrument. Production, recording, promotion, performance, and even business are all areas that musicians can teach online.
Step 2: Declare your financial aspirations
Saying that you’re going to make money selling an online course isn’t enough. Exactly how much money are you looking to make from your course? Are you hoping for $1,000 or $10,000? Do you want to earn a full-time income and dedicate entirely to the music business? Or are you looking for just an extra source of income? No matter what ambitions you have, it’s incredibly important to be specific about how much money you want rolling in.
Goal setting will help you determine just how much time, money, and effort you’ll need to put behind the creation and marketing of your online course.
Step 3: Build an Audience
The only way to get students is to put your online course in front of them. While there are countless strategies to build an audience, the best comes through giving something incredible away entirely free and using that to build an email list.
Fortunately, musicians like you have plenty of knowledge to give.
You can create an eBook, a cheat-sheet, a private community, or even a mini course. These free resources are called lead magnets, and they should give out the easy but real “magic bullet” aspects of your teachings. This will give spark a lot of excitement inside of potential students.
Step 4: Pricing your course
If you’re curious how much you should charge your students, the answer is clear. Package your course so that it is incredibly valuable, and then charge as much as you can. Tons of beginners in online business (and we’ve seen this happen a lot with musicians) feel timid by pricing their knowledge accordingly to the value they provide.
Let’s say, for example, that your students want to learn professional audio editing. If you can teach them how to do that, your course can be worth at least a few hundred dollars. If your student were to use a live instructor, the cost would be far higher than what you're charging!
Step 5: Create your school platform and build your sales page
Building your school is where the tires hit the pavement. If you’d like to succeed and teach online, you’re going to need an easy to use platform that looks authoritative. Your personal brand as a musician is your most valuable asset when it comes to marketing your online course, so you should look for a platform that can showcase your worth.
When it comes to the technical side of things, you should ensure that your course can be consumed in mobile devices and that you use a shopping cart that’s simple and customer friendly.
When the time comes to develop the sales page, you can use a simple formula:
- Start off your page with an attention-grabbing headline, and build off it with a subhead.
- It’s also highly recommended to flash a two-minute video to help you develop excitement and authority for your course as well as your brand.
- Below the video, you can dive into all the features of your course. If you’re having trouble finding features for your course, you can do some competitive research and discover what type of courses are selling!
- To include social proof in your sales page, drop in a few testimonials from previous customers or people who can speak highly of your talent as a musician!
- All that’s left is to make your life-changing course sound like a must-buy. This can be done through comparing the course price with one-on-one lessons.
Step 6: Produce your Course
You’ve got your idea, and you know what transformations you’re going to give to your students. Now all that’s left is to create the meat of your course. But how do you build a course from beginning to end?
The first step is to create an outline that takes your student from where she is currently and sparks a musical transformation. After you lay out the steps, you can create videos about each step, and package it into a course.
Creating videos is cheap, and you can even record high-quality videos from your phone and get a decent microphone off of Amazon if you’re on a tighter budget. A lot of teachers on our website use a combination of live video and slide presentations to explain the theory and importance of the subject at hand.
Step 7: Launch Your Course
Our teachers love the moment our courses go live. After a lot of fun work shooting videos and putting together a course, there are a lot of options beginners can use to successfully launch their courses. And while it’s fun to try the latest methods and tactics, we’ve found a formula that works best for online courses.
We call this the “Crazy 8 Launch Strategy” and it covers everything from education, to addressing common concerns. It’s easy to do, and members inside of our community have made five figures using this tested strategy.
The launch strategy is broken down into eight days.
- On day one, you tease your course to your email list to build some engagement and excitement.
- Day two is where you answer the question of what the course covers and who is for.
- On day three, the doors to your course open to students.
- Day four is all about answering the major questions your potential students have been asking about the course.
- On day five, you throw in an exclusive bonus until midnight.
- Day six is the day that you say thank you to your email list for buying and joining your course!
- Day seven, you release a logical argument to buy the course. It’s important to declare that you’re going to shut your doors to new students on day eight.
- On the last day of the email series, send out three emails letting your potential buyers know that you’re closing your doors!
Some instructors use “special launch pricing” instead of closing enrollment after the launch, which allows them to keep the doors open to possible students who might come later.
Online courses present a great opportunity for musicians to generate income from their passion. I know it sounds a little intimidating to create an online course, but we’ve seen people like you take their business from zero to full-time income following the steps above! You enjoy music, so why not make money doing something you love.
Eduardo Yi is the lead content marketer at Teachable, a leading e-learning platform that allows everyone, from creative individuals to established organizations, to easily create, sell, and manage their own professional online courses.