Friday, February 26, 2021

Why I Did a Beta Launch of “Pricing Right” — and What You Can Learn From It for Launching Your Own Course

I’ve been using the Teachable platform for my Resume Writer’s University courses for over a year now. Up until my most recent course, I’d always created the course first, and then launched it.

But one of the strategies recommended by Teachable in their trainings is to do a beta launch of a course, building the course as you go along. Because “Pricing Right” is a multiple-lesson course at a higher price point than my previous courses, I decided to use the beta launch strategy for this course.

A beta launch is often suggested for course creators to help you improve your course and get to know your customers because you’re collaborating with your audience as you’re creating it. If you are thinking about how to do your first — or next course — I wanted to share my experience. 

Here are some advantages of doing a beta launch for your course:
  • To Build Awareness: You can build awareness and buzz around your course launch by announcing the beta launch of your course. This is especially true if you offer the course at a discount to get testers for the course. I offered the “Pricing Right” course to Bronze members of at a discount in exchange for their feedback and a testimonial, if they would recommend the course.
  • To Get a Competitive Edge: Getting feedback and interaction with your audience helps shape the content so that customers get more out of it. I had participants fill out a short survey after each lesson. Because I “dripped” the content (releasing new lessons each Tuesday and Friday), I was able to incorporate in suggestions from the surveys as I created the course content. This made the course even more valuable for current and future participants.
  • To Ease Launch Anxiety. Having feedback from beta testers helps you fix any issues that came up when your beta testers were going through your course. With “Pricing Right,” for example, I got feedback from a couple of participants that the information on the slides was useful, and they wanted access to the slide deck. So I went back and included that with each lesson. That made the course more valuable too. And this kind of feedback gives you more confidence in the course itself, helping you feel free to tell people more confidently what transformation it offers them. (Hearing on the survey each week the “biggest takeaway” they got from the lesson was both helpful and inspiring!)
  • To Gather Testimonials. As I mentioned before, the discount for Bronze members was in exchange for their feedback, including a testimonial, if they were comfortable offering one. Several participants offered them up quickly, allowing me to add them to the course sales page before the official course launch.

  • To Help People Who Can’t Afford It. While this was not my main objective, there were a couple of members of my audience who expressed interest in the course — and who are great brand ambassadors. The discount for Bronze members was more than 70% off the final course price, so they were able to take the course at a super-affordable price point.
  • To Get Feedback on This Course — and Future Courses. By getting feedback as I developed the course, I was able to adjust the course curriculum as the feedback came in. The feedback I got from beta testers was invaluable for the development of not just this course, but my next one! I got not only ideas for this course, but for future ones, because people were honest about what they need and want.

I’m grateful to the Bronze members who were part of the beta launch who took the surveys after each lesson. (I gave them a specific deadline for each lesson survey, and did a drawing for a $10 Amazon gift card for each survey, plus a $10 Amazon gift card if they filled out all nine lesson surveys by a specific deadline. About 20% of the beta launchers met the deadline to complete all nine surveys, and I mailed out those gift cards earlier this week.)

I definitely recommend charging beta testers for access to your digital product or course. Those who don’t have any investment in the product aren’t as likely to follow through with the feedback you need. If you charge for your beta launch, you’ll bring in some income while perfecting the product, which is a win-win for the people who agree to participate in the beta launch.

I did have a couple of folks who signed up for the beta launch but then had “life happen” and they weren’t able to follow through with participating in the lessons as they were launched and providing real-time feedback. That’s okay too. They still have access to the course, even though they weren’t able to help me shape the content.

If you’re interested in “Pricing Right,” you can check it out here:

And remember, Bronze members of get special pricing (and sometimes, early access!) to courses on Resume Writer’s University. Bronze members, get your special pricing here.

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