Marketing is a multifaceted concept. There are seemingly infinite ways for business entities to market their products and services, especially as we progress further into the 21st century.

Once, highway billboards and radio spots seemed like the perfect marketing vehicles. Then TV commercials seemed ideal for many years, as did magazine and comic book ads.

Now, there are avenues such as social media, guest blog posts, and podcast appearances. The more creative companies are, the more likely they’ll reach those in their niche who can become dedicated customers.

In this article, we’ll talk about another useful marketing tool: digital courses. By the end, you’ll understand why it’s in your best interest as a business entity to create some.

Free Digital Courses Bring You Customer Information

Many businesses want their employees to learn digitally these days, especially with the pandemic going on. They can stay safely behind their computer screens and learn new skills that can translate to their jobs. Many companies:

  • Engage instructors that they feel can teach their employees vital skills
  • Offer these digital courses as opportunities for their employees to become more well-rounded and knowledgeable

However, that’s not the model many entrepreneurs use if they want to market themselves and their products.

Rather than charging a fee, individuals will create and offer a free digital course via their website. But wait a minute, you might say. What kind of ROI can they get out of that?

When potential customers sign up for a free course, they’re required to give their name, email address, and other vital information. They might not provide the person offering the course any money yet, but they’re essentially signing up for a mailing list. A shrewd marketer will then utilize their data.

Free Courses and Sales Funnels

Another big plus when a business entity or individual offers a free online course is that when someone comes to their website to sign up for it, they’re entering that person or company’s sales funnel.

A sales funnel:

  • Is an affiliated network of options, all designed to lead to an eventual sale
  • Might include free courses, videos to watch, calls to action, an email marketing campaign, and more

With a sales funnel, you might start with a social media account. On that account, you mention a free online course that interested parties can sign up for on your website. The person then goes to the site, where they sign up for that course.

Now, you have their name, email address, and probably a little additional data about them. You can put their name on a mailing list. You can also include a CTA, or call to action, on the website.

The CTA might be to buy one of your products at a special introductory rate. Not every person who comes to your website will do it, but a small percentage of them will. That’s how you start to make a profit from your business.

Offering Digital Courses Costs You Nothing

What’s particularly nice about this business model is that you can create a digital course very quickly, either for free or for almost no financial outlay. All it takes is time: time to write the course and perhaps record some video or audio.

All you require for that is a microphone and a computer, or a smartphone. Technology allows you to make a course in a few hours if you know enough about the subject matter.

The digital course does not need to be particularly long or complicated. Think of it as you giving the customer a small taste of your wares for free. If they want more, they’ll have to pay.

Digital Courses Establish Your Credentials

The other thing that digital courses do is establish yours as an exciting new voice in your niche. What you should do is make the content as compelling as possible. You need to offer a fresh perspective or answer some questions in your course that your customers are likely to have.  

When someone sticks around and watches your free course, if it impresses them, they might buy your products. They’re also aware of you, and you’re starting to build their trust.

Brand awareness is extremely valuable. Brand loyalty is something for which you should strive more than anything else.

In this way, you can see how a digital course can be a strong part of your sales funnel and overall marketing strategy. Anyone can make one if you have an idea and a few hours to spare.