You have the power to share your expertise with so many people when you shift to an online course model. But to do that successfully, you need to spend time identifying (and attracting) your ideal audience.
As you consider an online business, you probably spend lots of time thinking about what you’ll share and how you’ll package it. But who you’re trying to help with your course matters! Taking the time to really hone in on your ideal audience will help you sell your course more easily—and help create results for your audience, too.
Even more important, you need to identify your ideal audience’s struggles and stresses. This is the key to effectively creating, launching, and selling your course.
How To Identify Your Ideal Audience
Identifying your ideal audience should be the foundation of your strategy in crafting a course that wows. Your target audience will (and should) shape every decision you make, from the language and graphics you use to the format and marketing of your course.
How do you actually define your ideal audience? Here are five ways to make this process seamless.
Know Who You’re Helping
The first question you should consider in identifying your ideal audience is: who are you helping? You likely already know this answer, but clarifying that answer helps you find purpose in your course.
You’ve developed expertise that’s unique to you. And sharing that expertise with the right audience is not only a way to boost your income, but to directly impact people through something you’re passionate about.
Think about who your expertise will be most important to:
- What’s the age, lifestyle, and career of that person?
- Who are they on a personal level?
- What do they already know about your course topic, and how are you going to help change their perspective?
This is also the time to identify your ideal audience’s problems. Your course will be entirely designed to solve those problems or help your audience create their own solutions. Knowing your ideal audience and their mindset is essential to finding success in shifting your expertise online.
Do Lots Of Research
Research should be a large part of identifying your ideal audience. You need to learn as much as you can about your ideal audience, especially once you understand who they are and what they need.
One way to do this is to send out a survey to your current audience, even if they don’t have anything to do with your new online business model. For an even less formal option, post polls on your social media or LinkedIn profile to gather key data.
The research process shouldn’t end once you launch your course, though. At that point, use Google Analytics to gain important insights into your course demographic. The more information you learn about your ideal audience, the better you can tailor your messaging and marketing to reflect their needs.
Here are some of the things you should consider in the research process:
- How old is your ideal audience member?
- Where do they live?
- What do they do professionally?
- Are they married or single?
- Do they have children?
- What motivates them and what are their goals?
- What’s frustrating to them about what they’re doing now?
- Why might they be hesitant to invest in a course?
- What format of education do they feel most comfortable with?
Of course, you can add your own questions to this list. But these questions are a great way to build a clear portrait of your ideal audience member.
Your competition might also have valuable insights. Check into their audience members to help you answer these questions, but remember to keep in mind what makes YOU different.
Use Your Research To Price Your Courses Appropriately
Once you’ve done your research, you can effectively price your services. Whether you only focus on your core offering or you build out pricing tiers (which I recommend), knowing who your ideal audience is allows you to price strategically.
Do competitor research and consider what your prospective students’ lives look like. From there, what will they be willing (and able) to invest in a course? How will you create and communicate true value that feels worthwhile?
The key to pricing any online course is to base it on the value of the transformation your program will spark.
Create A Representative Customer Avatar
Now that you’ve considered who you’re helping and done your research, it’s time to create a representative customer avatar. You already have all of the pieces for this ready to go, so let’s put them together into one ideal audience avatar.
Your customer avatar is basically a super-specific representation of your ideal course student. You’ll put a name and a face to all of the brainstorming and research you’ve already done.
Once you create your ideal customer avatar, you can base your online course marketing around it for better results.
Focus On Student Outcomes
Identifying your ideal audience means focusing on what they need. That means you need to ultimately make decisions based on what outcomes your students will experience upon completing your course.
When someone invests in an online course, they believe in your expertise and the results it will create. Make sure that you fully understand what your ideal audience wants and needs so that you can create strong content and position it accordingly.
You’re guiding your audience on a journey towards some ultimate transformation, and that’s where you’re able to create true value. That’s why you need to know your audience’s values inside and out.
Identifying your ideal audience is the most important thing you need to do before developing your course.
When you’re planning to shift your expertise online, it’s so important to hone in on who you’re going to serve. This lets you build a course that really resonates!