Got an online course
Here’s how a strange little Game of Thrones spin-off series can help you have your most successful launch yet
Wondering what the heck you just watched?
It’s a video I sent to one of my friends back in July 2017 in the lead up to Game Of Thrones Season 7.
But it, and all its friends (there were 7 videos in total), became pretttyyy powerful pieces of content.
The friend I was sending them to (her name’s Emily, and as you’ll see in 2.9 seconds, she’s great for my self-esteem) started singing their praises at drinks one night--
So much so, a couple of my other friends *really* wanted to see them.
But they had NEVER watched Game Of Thrones.
I know, right? THE FOOLS!
Now, because GOT is the most glorious show on television, and half the fun of it is deconstructing every episode with whoever’s in earshot, I was convinced my non-watching friends had a *lot* to gain from tuning in.
And this felt like the perfect opportunity to use my powers of persuasion to do them a solid.
I told them they couldn’t see my strange little creations until they’d watched all of Season 1.
They pleaded with me…
They bargained with Emily…
They tried to get my fiancé to crack…
But we all held steady and, finally, they caved.
They watched all of season 1.
Then season 2.
They WhatsApped me on the regular to (spoiler alert!) process Ned Stark’s beheading and talk about what a cunning little beast Joffrey was. I also sent them my strange little videos, which, of course, were the major prize.
I’m going to pretend I didn’t see you pull that face…
In short, their lives got richer. And, so did mine, because I got to feel very proud of myself for getting them to FINALLY watch the greatest show on TV--
Something 6 years of social pressure hadn’t been able to achieve.
And I did it by employing two persuasive elements you can and should leverage in your next launch.
This strange little tale is a great example that-
While being able to access something reserved for a special few is highly appealing, that appeal is often less about the thing itself, and more about what it represents in terms of social status and belonging.
You and I are social beasts, and rely on our relationships with others for all sorts of things, from forming our identity, to maintaining (or elevating) our status, and getting cues on how to behave.
In short, the relationships we have and the groups we belong to are very powerful, meaningful things.
My GOT-resisting friends didn’t want my weird little videos for pure entertainment value. (And really, what entertainment could they offer without the context of the show itself?)
They wanted them so they could--
Be in on the joke
Join the conversation
And be part of the small sub-group of friends who got a special WhatsApp delivery every Monday morning
The fact I wouldn’t let them have all this intrinsic goodness without jumping through a hoop (and it’s important to point out this hoop was one I was almost certain would add value to their lives - it’s all about meaningful impact, amirite?) made it all the more enticing.
I’m going to borrow from the genius of Robert Cialdini here, because he says most things better than I ever could, and seems to wear a suit 96% of the time, while I spend most of my days in stretchy pants:
“Potential unavailability is a compelling feature… if it is rare or becoming rare, it’s more valuable.”
So let’s break this down.
What about YOUR offer is (a) socially enticing, and (b) rare?
Need prompts? Boo, I got you...
What exclusive group does it invite your prospect into? e.g. 6-figure entrepreneurs, ladies in control of their health, or new parents who still enjoy sexy time (these are all launches I’ve worked on, by the way… and let me assure you, that sexy time group is HIGHLY coveted)
Is it a back-stage pass into a room full of people your prospect admires (yep, in a lot of cases, you’re one of these people), or a fast track to an elevated group of peers?
Will opting in elevate your prospect’s self-esteem in some way? e.g. by allowing them to say “I’m a person worth investing in”, “I’ve just done something great for my family” or “I’m part of the cool crowd”
Are you launching a course with limited places?
Or a mastermind that can only be accessed via application?
Does your prospect need to be on your list to see the offer?
Is this the last time your program will be priced this low?
Or the only time it will be offered in this form?
I have a thousand other prompts up my sleeves, but the point is this…
Exclusivity is a multi-faceted thing, and the REAL draw card it offers is the opportunity to be part of something meaningful.
If you can work out what the specifics are for the course you’re launching, you’ll be miles ahead of 87% of the competition.
I did the maths.
And got a reliably better outcome than old mate Stannis
NAIL YOUR BONUSES
You noticed how so many online courses these days have bonus lists longer than the course content itself?
That’s because - when done well - bonuses can often be more appealing than the main event.
Sometimes this is down to exclusivity-
You can open your course or membership up to errybody who stands to benefit, but limit the number of people who get access to certain bonuses, like 1:1 coaching calls, additional group workshops, or, you know, weird little videos (HANDY TIP: these are usually most valuable to your launch as cart open bonuses)...
Sometimes this is a result of a nifty little cognitive bias called anchoring-
Which is the tendency we human folk have to be influenced by the numbers presented to us initially. So, if your prospect sees EVERYTHING included in your course, then a long list of bonuses (with their real-world prices or values laid out), and then discovers the complete package is a comparative steal, they’re more likely to buy…
But, whichever way you slice it, it’s always comes down to this:
A great bonus is one that’s aligned with your offer and helps your prospect reach their goals faster, more easily, or with greater success.
If it doesn’t fit this criteria, it doesn’t belong in your launch.
Look, I know this probably seems like weird advice when every man and their dog is stacking bonuses into their offers like they’re flipping pancakes at IHOP, but here’s the thing…
Overwhelm kills sales.
And the tipping point between adding value and drowning your prospect in tools, tactics, and ideas, is a *preettty* delicate one.
So do yourself, your next launch, and your business a favour. Go and look at your bonuses, one by one, and ask yourself this question...
“Do the benefits of this bonus align with the key promise of my offer?”
If so, give yourself a high-five and keep it in. If not, pluck it out and re-purpose it somewhere else.
Because the truth of the matter is this…
Your prospect wants the OUTCOMES your course or membership offers. They don’t care how many bits and pieces it takes to get there.
So draw them a straight line, support them in every way possible, and don’t get distracted by shiny objects in the periphery.
Including these will make your prospect less likely to buy in the first place, less likely to reach the course outcomes if they do, and less likely to recommend your course to their peers.
And you don’t want that, right?
If you found these insights useful, I’ve got something else you might like...
A collection of my best knowledge nuggets - delivered direct to your inbox over 5 days - that shows you how to make your next launch your most successful yet
Starting with the single most important aspect of a highly profitable launch (and I’ll bet you another weird GOT video it’s not what you’re thinking).
Want it? Drop your details in here.
*ooo* so exclusive
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