November 17th, 2022 Sell Online Courses

Everyone with an email inbox knows that major businesses use Black Friday to bring in new customers, sell products, and connect with an existing customer base. 

However, just because you’re a small online business owner doesn’t mean you can’t get a piece of the Black Friday pie, too.

Here are five ways to take advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday for your online course business. 

Create an irresistible offer

When most people first think of creating an irresistible offer, they automatically think about drastically discounting the price of their product or service. In reality, an irresistible offer is simply a strategic structuring of your products and/or services where the value exceeds the costs. 

Here are some ways to create an actionable offer: 

  • Bundling. Think of packaging valuable courses together at an attractive price for customers that still means high sales for you. 
  • Value adds. You could add in personal one-on-one coaching, a free session, office hours, or early access to make a high-value offer that’s more than a discount. 
  • Risk Reversal. This means that your course will provide the results promised without risk to the customer. This is mostly seen as a “money back guarantee” policy or the first lesson free. This can reduce hesitation at purchase. 
  • Segmentation. Create different offers based on purchase history. For example, existing customers don’t need a great deal on your intro courses, but may be more interested in continuing education opportunities you provide. 
  • Time limit. A timer on an offer compels people to act fast. Make your coupon window narrow with “early bird” and “last chance” incentives to create a sense of urgency. 

Start building excitement now

In the days leading up to your Black Friday sale, your messages should get your audience excited and looking forward to your special offer. You want them clearly aware that you’re coming out with a Black Friday promotion.

A great way to build buzz is with a “Pre Launch” page. This can start as a “Coming Soon” page that will be changed to a “Special Offer” page as soon as your promotion officially goes live.

When thinking of what to add to a prelaunch/landing page, consider the following: 

  • A catchy headline and clear copy: Make sure you are clearly describing your course and stating your value proposition. Be urgent and catchy, but also direct and clear, to compel sign-ups. 
  • Visual elements: add pictures, a sneak peek of your content, and if you have it, a video.
  • Clear call to action: a CTA (call to action) refers to the link button where visitors can purchase your deals. It is important that all your CTAs are clearly visible and accessible anywhere on your landing page to make it easy for your potential customers.
  • Social proof elements: if you have collected reviews from your past students, add them to your landing page to reinforce the value of your offer.
  • A place to collect email addresses: if your deal is not live yet, add a place for potential customers to add their emails and get notified about your Black Friday offer. After Black Friday, the form could be a newsletter sign-up. 
  • Refund Policy: Sentences like “Money Back Guaranteed” or “Risk-Free” will inform your customers about the refund policy and reassure even the most cautious buyers.
  • Contact Information: Provide a way for potential learners to reach out to you so you can offer them a feeling of security and improve your image as the course creator.

Create an Email Sales Series

You can’t just send one email for Black Friday and one email for Cyber Monday anymore. Driving the most sales from your emails requires a well-thought-out strategy and plan. You need to build excitement through pre-Black Friday and Cyber Monday emails. 

Here are the five emails we think you should send for Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend: 

  • Email 1 (2 weeks before Black Friday): Announce that something big is coming
  • Email 2 (a few days later): Reveal the upcoming offer
  • Email 3 (a week before Black Friday): Launch the offer with a clear, clickable coupon code
  • Email 4 (on Black Friday): Offer reminder
  • Email 5 (A few days after): Offer ending – last chance

Make your emails short and to the point with easily visible CTAs. Consider adding a countdown to your emails as well.  Make your email stand out with value-driven subject lines, rather than “Black Friday Sale” or “Our Biggest Sale.” 

Set Up Abandoned Cart Recovery

Cart abandonment is when shoppers add items to their cart but don’t complete the purchase. Following up on abandoned carts allows you to recover lost profit by sending reminder emails or follow-up messages. 

Visitors abandon their carts for several reasons: 

  • Additional fees not shown on your course landing page
  • Complicated checkout process with too many steps
  • Security concerns (is this website safe?)
  • Unclear fulfillment instructions (How soon can purchasers access the course?)
  • Technical issues or website glitches

If you’re using the WooCommerce shopping cart integration with LearnDash, then you can set up an abandoned cart strategy in minutes. You can use a plugin or email service as well to set up a trigger for abandoned cart emails.

Or, you can try to avoid cart abandonment altogether: think of auto-applying coupons, adding live chat to your website, and offering different payment options. If you create these trust elements at checkout, users will convert more often. 

Extend Your Offer to Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday is a global movement encouraging people to spread generosity through philanthropy. Giving Tuesday takes place every year on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday. You can incorporate Giving Tuesday into your Black Friday / Cyber Monday strategy by extending your original offer through end-of-day Tuesday, with a portion of your Tueaday profits going towards charity.

Craft a custom email that will go out on Giving Tuesday. This email should highlight a few things: A brief explanation of Giving Tuesday, your fundraising goal, the organization you plan to donate to, and how much of your sales will be going toward donations. Make sure to share additional ways your subscribers can support the cause even if they don’t make a purchase on your site. 

Send a special thank you email to anyone who buys your course this day. You can even include a small gift to really show your appreciation.

Build a Black Friday Sale with LearnDash 

If you’re truly ready to start selling courses, there’s no better time to get started than Black Friday. Launch with confidence and entice your learners with an unbeatable offer. 

Want to see more? Watch our webinar replay for more breakdown and tips on how to implement these Black Friday strategies.

Want to try it out first? Take the LearnDash demo for a spin before you commit.

Rachel Kolman photo

About Rachel Kolman

Rachel Kolman is a Content Specialist for StellarWP. She has over 10 years of experience writing and editing for a variety of clients and brands. With an MFA in Creative Writing, Rachel finds new ways to use language to tell a story. She is passionate about education, social change, pop culture, and video games. She lives in Seattle, WA with her husband and two cats.

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