As a course instructor you may be asking ‘ok, so what can email really do for my business?’ and the answer is…a lot.
There is no doubt today that email marketing rules the online business mainstream. As research shows, email marketing matters never ceases to be relevant, and offers the best way to generate leads. Perhaps it’s enough to say that in 2018 email users were up to 3.8 billion and this number is expected to reach up to 4.3 billion by 2023.
The Complete Checklist To Selling More Online Courses
Email is a necessary tool that helps online businesses attract and nurture leads that can result to more sales.
Email sequences couldn’t be too far away from the basket, and have proven to be an essential tool for building an effective relationship with your email list members in the process of turning them from leads into paying customers…
What is an Email Sequence?
An email sequence is a number of emails scheduled to be sent in a specific timeframe where each one serves a different purpose. It is essentially a series of automated marketing emails.
Otherwise known as an ‘autoresponder’, an email sequence plays a huge role in your email marketing strategy and describes a series of emails that are sent out to your audience at a timely and methodically manner.
Email sequences have some obvious and hidden benefits attached to them.
In order to fully exploit the power of email marketing and set up an email sequence for your followers, first you need to build an email list with contacts that belong to your target audience – those people who your course is mostly relevant and a must-have product.
Once you have your email list, you are ready to learn more about what email sequence is and how it can help your online school get more sales and gain brand awareness.
Different Types of Emails and Sequences
There are many types of email sequences and the differences are found in the goal of your each email campaign.
What it includes and urges your email list members to do is directly associated with what you want to do and your business goals.
Each sequence might have a different purpose like:
Each email you send out needs to follow a specific plan of action and a goal which will potentially bring your leads one step closer to ‘closing the deal’ or in marketing terms, ‘making the sale’.
Do you want people to get to know more about what you do? Then, you can create an email that links to your site – either your course description or blog.
Do you want people to build trust in your product? You can create an email that links out to customer reviews and testimonials.
Do you want people to engage with you in a more direct way? Create an email inviting them to join a webinar or a podcast talking about your course.
Do you want to inform them about the launch of your new course? Then, create an email that tells them when and where this takes place in the form of announcement.
Do you want to welcome people and show them around your site? Create an email that allows them to explore your website and find the information they need the most.
TIP: What’s awesome about sequence emails is that you get to write them ONCE and then you choose an email marketing tool that will send them out to subscribers directly, and…your job is done!
TIP 2: Don’t forget to setup your email notifications in Learnworlds. They are also part of your email sequence welcoming new users, students, customers and customizing the whole learning experience.
Each email sequence can include multiple different kinds of emails to engage your audience in different ways, leading them to the final desired result.
To guide your way through different types of email sequences, in this article we present the most prevailing ones that you will need as a course instructor.
The ‘Welcome’ Email – an email that welcomes new members to your online community, It usually provides them with an incentive to explore your online school and purchase your courses. Also, informing email subscribers about what they expect to see in your emails and how useful is being a member of the email list – presenting the benefits.
The Question Email – this is the email that aims to entice and attract attention. It takes the form of the ‘helpful email’ and lending them a hand – letting them know that you are there for them and building on awareness.
The Newsletter Email – an encouraging email that urges subscribers to check out your blog content, your videos/webinars, read and share your school’s or industry news, learn about new features or trying out alternative solutions you provide.
The ‘Announcement’ Email – a notifying email that informs subscribers for news/updates. For example:
a) Course Launch – announcing the launch of your course (date/day) – countdown, providing a course outline and focusing on the benefits it offers.
b) Course Registration Open Call – encouraging them to take a pick in your course, linking to your course page description and offering an open call to course enrolment/pre-registration.
c) Feature Update – letting know subscribers about the launch of a new feature or access to new course material.
The ‘Offer/Bonus’ Email – a specialized targeted email that promotes an offer the email subscribers can claim within a limited-time, encouraging them to take new steps (get their coupon codes, download an ebook, join a VIP webinar etc.)
The ‘Last Chance’ Email – this is similar to abandoning cart email that is used on retail sites – ‘Claim Your Spot’ providing a ‘Last Call’ to indecisive people.
The ‘Product Review’ Email – the email that asks your email subscribers, students or community for constructive feedback and reviews on your product.
The ‘Nurture’ Email – an email that helps your subscribers get to know you better. It usually shares industry or company news and informs them on what’s going on ‘behind the scenes’.
The ‘Re-engagement’ Email – an email that is designed to ‘win back’ your subscribers and regenerate their interest in your product. It usually sends out a reminder or a warning that you are going to unsubscribe inactive users. This could also be packed with a unique offer.
The ‘Thank You’ Email – this is the email that sends out a ‘thank you’ note to subscribers for being loyal, supporting your school and taking an active role in the learning community.
These are just a few types of emails you can send out to your subscribers once you set your email marketing strategy up and running. Each one is used with a certain purpose in mind and helps to serve your business needs.
On that note, you should make sure to create emails that use the best and most appropriate visuals that go with it and match with your brand. Apart from designing good-quality photos, you need to come up with a catchy marketing copy, and choose your colours and graphics carefully.
SUMO has a great deal of email marketing examples to show, coming from businesses who have nailed it!
How to Set up Your Email Sequence
Your email sequence could be about any topic, but it should always relate to your school’s subject and online courses. Afterall, it needs to create awareness and get people interested into what you are offering.
To help you create a winning email sequence, there are a few steps you need to take into account…
1Name the sequence
Naming the sequence can give you the pointers you need to create your sequence. In a way, it sets up the context and prepares the ground for it, it keeps you focused and driven to your goal.
The name of your sequence describes what it is going to come up in the next emails, and can easily become the headline/subject line of your email.
A few examples:
a) Step-by-Step Guide on how to Get Fit in 30 days [Sports/Fitness]
b) Mastering the Science of Social Media: Your Very Own Free Toolkit [Business/Digital Marketing]
c) Best Strategies on How to Ace Your Next Job Interview [Job Search/Career Advice]
2Set up the sequence
Each autoresponder tool has different guidelines as to how you can set up your sequence, however they all follow a ‘standard route’ to it.
First, create the sequence and give it the name you have decided for it. Then finish your email draft and complete your email series. Decide when you want each email to go out to your list of subscribers – these could only be a group of subscribers or everyone. Finally, click save and you are ready to go.
3Set time to the content
Your email sequence starts as soon as each subscriber enters your email list. It’s up to you to decide how many days after the subscription you want these emails to be sent out. What’s great is that no email content is lost and each subscriber receives it on the days scheduled e.g. Day 1, Day 3, Day 5 and so on.
This means that you can create a 10 email sequence that is sent out within the duration of 30 days. Alternatively, it could be just one or two per week, or even a total of 30 emails sent out on an annual basis!
Looking at it from this scope, we see that email sequences are perfect fit for drip marketing campaigns that allow you to have control on what kind of content your subscribers get to have access to and when, with specific times and dates.
A good rule of thumb is to have more emails that are crammed together in the beginning of your sequence and spread the rest out later. Sending an email each day for two or three days in a row to a fresh lead joining your email list is great to get them hooked!
This concept is probably easier understood once you get down to the real thing and check out some email sequence examples of your own…
Email Sequence Templates for Selling Online Courses
Whether you have created an email sequence or not yet, we offer a couple of templates to help you out. The logic behind these follow the two key phases of the course launch which are:
1) educating your audience and 2) presenting your course.
In phase 1, you can send out informative material to your email list to help create an understanding around the topic and build awareness on your subject. These could be 5 to 6 nurturing or engagement emails that are sent out before the launch of your course.
Such emails go out to people who aren’t yet fully aware of what you do and need more convincing information to decide whether to buy from you or not.
If it’s 14 days (two weeks) prior to your course launch, you can send them informative pieces of content that includes blog posts, ebooks, a PDF, case studies, invitation to webinars, videos, offer group coaching, short guides or checklists.
In phase 2, you are ready to take real action…sending that owl outside the Hogwarts grounds.
Email 1: Your course teaser
Announce the launch of your online course in due date (on a specific day/time)
Tell your audience what your course will be about, who is it for, what can it help others do
Create a media accompaniment e.g. a video talking about your course. Here’s a video teaser example for an animation course.
Email 2: Your Course Description Details
Provide more details on your course – what does it include?
Give some insight into your course – the basic outline including number of classes, modules and bonus material
Focus on value proposition – what makes your course offer unique?
Include the sharing option on social media to build excitement
Email 3: Your Course Becomes Available
Inform your audience that they can register on your course
Include testimonials on your email or a link to an external page
Provide a link to your course sales page and a more detailed description
Create urgency to join your course with a specific ‘closing’ date
Email 4: Gathering Feedback
Create a survey/questionnaire and ask your students for feedback
Get a review or a quote on what was useful or not in terms of course content and administration
Email 5: FAQ Email
Study your feedback and provide answers to FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions
Tell your audience that you offer money guarantee
Give out the course duration time, accessibility details and the closing date (cart closing)
Email 6: Give out a freebie
Extend the closing date
Offer a renovated checklist for your online course (or a free 1:1 coaching session)
Encourage your existing students to bring a friend to get a discount on your next course
Email 7: Thank your audience
Say thank you to your audience for being part of your course launch
Include more testimonials from students talking about your course
Show social media posts that people have shared boasting about your course
Email 8: Your Cart is Closing (Email 1)
9am on second-to-last day: Come up with a logical argument saying that this is the best time to buy
Give reference to your freebies and your course discounts
Remind your audience that they have limited time left to buy your course
Email 9: Your Cart is Closing (Email 2)
10-11am: Mid-day reminder of the closing cart
Email 10: This is Your Last Chance (Email 3)
10pm: A reminder sent out two hours before the closure of the cart saying that it is the last chance to buy
Email 1: Making the Announcement!
Tell people when you expect to have your course ready
Include a countdown image/Gif
Email 2: What is this all about?
Introduce yourself, your school and the upcoming course
Provide an outline of what it is about and how people can benefit from it
Build excitement around your course by creating a poll on a relevant topic
Email 3: Did you know? The News-letter Email
Tell people something they are more likely to NOT know about
Provide links to your blog – if you have one or write about interesting statistics on your course subject
Present the results of your poll and showcase your content/learning material
Email 4: The Course is Live!
Inform your audience that your course is ready
Make it easy for them to enroll and link to your sales page
Remind people who is this course for and how they can benefit from it
Email 5: Newsletter Email
Remind the benefits of being part of this community
Offer a free ebook download
Email 6: Have you tried this? – FAQ
Provide explanations on how your audience can use your course
Answer commonly asked questions and further guidelines to those who have enrolled on your course
Ask them if they need help with anything related to your course
Email 7: Thanking Your People & Review Email
Show your love to your audience and send out your ‘Thank You’ note
Share relevant testimonials and social proof
Give out credits to other sites or key people sharing what they are saying about your course
Ask your audience if they are willing to share their learning experience with your course
Email 8: The Bonus 1+1 Offer
Offer a reward to your audience for their dedication to your business
Encourage people to enroll on your course and offer a mini-course for free or the next one with 10% discount
Email 9: Newsletter Email
Share an invitation to a webinar offering group consultation
Provide link to free resources – articles and industry news
Email 10: Don’t Forget – Closing Cart (Email 1)
9am: Remind subscribers for your offer or discount, telling them this is the best time to buy and should not be left out – FOMO
Email 11: Complete Your Order – Closing Cart (Email 2)
12pm: Mid-day reminder of closing cart. They still have some time left to enrol to your course
Email 12: Still Here? Your Cart is Waiting (Email 3)
1 hour before closing: this is the final warning for closing cart
Email 1: Your Course Teaser
Create a video talking about your upcoming course
Introduce yourself and what you do with your online school – what’s your purpose?
Email 2: Providing more details about your course
Tell your audience when they should expect the course to be live (specific date/time)
Provide an outline and insights to the course – what it is going to include?
Come up with a value proposition and show how you stand out from your competitors
Email 3: Appearing on Media
Show testimonials and reviews coming from different sites and mentions/credits from popular companies
Invite your audience to a live podcast where you will be appearing to talk about your course
Email 4: Newsletter Email
Link to your blog resources and offer a mini-course for free
Share industry statistics focusing on FOMO (fear of missing out)
Email 5: The Follow Up Email
Ask your audience what are their thoughts on the previous podcast
Share current reviews, social proof and testimonials from royal followers and invite more people to have their say
Remind people that your course is going to be launched soon
Email 6: The Course is Available for the Public
Announce that the course is live and ready for people who pre-registered
Call for people who might be interested
Provide a full description of your course and link to your sales page
Email 7: Newsletter Email
Offer a free checklist and a course outline to entice more people on joining your course
Provide a link to blog articles and show off customers testimonials
Email 8: Basic Guidelines & FAQ Webinar
Make it easy for people to leave their comments and reviews on your course
Ask for both positive and negative/constructive feedback
Call for a webinar that answers FAQs
Email 9: Give thanks & Offer a Gift
Show your recognition and gratitude to your loyal followers and their prompt responses
Offer a complimentary ebook to help your audience understand your course learning material
Email 10: Newsletter Email
Call for a webinar that gives out free consultation
Share the newest article of your blog and link to other industry resources
Email 11: Giving out useful resources – The Newsletter Email
Create an infographic with useful stats on a topic relating to your course
Conduct your own research and share your results on your blog
Link to your website or other business accounts e.g. YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest
Email 12: Pre-closing cart
Tell your audience that the cart is going to close on specific date
Remind them of the benefits of joining the course and the discount the get with it
Email 13: Your Head’s Up – Closing Cart (Email 1)
9pm on second-to-last day: remind people that the cart is closing and tell them that this is the best time to buy
Email 14: Are you here? – Closing Cart (Email 2)
11pm: Second warning on closing cart and that course accessibility will end
Email 15: Still interested? – Last Chance (Email 3)
3 Hours before the closing of the cart. This is the last call for joining your online course
These three email sequence templates can guide your way to creating yours. They show which are the most important emails that need to be sent to your email subscribers, preparing them for the launch of your course. Don’t be afraid to change them and make a unique sequence that will work for your audience!
As you can see, there is a variety in the use of emails (and their types) and this helps to create awareness and build excitement around the launch of your course. Thanking your audience and asking for feedback is also a necessary part of the process, which you will need to fuse into your email marketing campaign.
Now, check the following example to see how this works in real life…
Example of a 7-day Course Launch Email Sequence
The following email sequence is an example that gives you an idea of what yours should look like and how it works out. It uses the template of the 7-day course launch email sequence used in this article.
While it’s not necessary to have the same material send out for each email, you can just use it as a source of inspiration.
The following email sequence prepares a course launch email for a CV writing course created by an online instructor and career coach.
Email Subject: I have a great announcement to make.
Date: 7 May 2019
After spending years on how to write a CV effectively, you may have concluded that no amount of drafts are good to be sent out to employers or even close enough to what you have dreamed for.
But, it doesn’t have to be that way.
Searching for a job can become an exhausting process, and the burden to come up with the perfect CV to impress employers it’s painstaking. I know exactly how you feel. I have been there, and somewhere in the process I have decided to give an end to that.
Check out my video:
[Image & Link to the video]
This is why I have decided to create a career-changing course that will help you land your dream job through the write-up of an awesome CV that will stand out from the competition.
Today, I am really excited to introduce you to my new course ‘How to Write a CV That Gets the Job’ that is starting in 3 days from now, on May 9th at 12:00 noon to be exact!
So, keep an eye on your inbox to see the course opening soon!
Talk soon! 🙂
CV & Career Coach
Email Subject: I think you might like this.
Date: 8 May 2019
I get it, you are tired of not getting the attention of employers.
That’s why I keep coming back to you. Reading the blog posts I am suggesting may help you engage deeply with what is being held there and the work that is taking place of the official launch of my course on CV Writing.
What if I told you I have created an exceptional bundle of text, quizzes and activities on the subject?
Here are some tips and advice I give out on my blog to help you out and prepare you for the real thing…
[Button with Link to the blog]
I am glad to introduce to my new course ‘How to Write a CV That Gets the Job’ that will finally help you land your dream job.
In the course you will learn:
How to ‘sell’ yourself effectively on paper
How to strategically use action words and verbs on your CV
How to write a career summary and other CV sections from scratch
How to ensure there is nothing missing on your CV!
So, I have to say, I am really excited about this course! I hope you will get thrilled about it too…
Make sure to keep an eye on your inbox to see the course opening soon! And if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask me.
Email Subject: ‘How to Write a CV That Gets the Job’ is open! (Go, go, go…)
Date: 9 May 2019
Three days ago, I announced that my online course ‘How to Write a CV That Gets the Job’, and is live! Your support has been overwhelming and it’s amazing that until today over 100 people have already signed up and counting!
Here’s what a reviewer wrote about it:
“I joined the course to learn how to write a CV that would talk about my skills and work experience and discovered the secrets on how to present myself in the best light possible! I updated my CV and the next day I received an email invitation for a job interview. How awesome is that?”
Now you can see what others are talking about and what they can achieve with just a little work!
Remember, I’m offering you the chance to learn how to write a CV that will help you climb the stairs leading to the job interview room and land your dream job!
Join our community of 100+ people who are learning the same thing and get your interview invite in only a matter of days.
Be sure to claim your spot on this course while enrolment period is open – until May 14th!
Email Subject: Tell me something Emma.
Date: 10 May 2019
Thanks for being part of our community! I want to ask one last thing before you start digging in…
Without your feedback and reviews, it is impossible that I improve your learning experience.
If you dig our stuff and get value out of it, I would really appreciate if you could please provide me with some feedback here:
[link to external site]
I want to personally thank you for being one of my students. I truly LOVE my students and will always be here if you need me.
Email Subject: Emma, what are you waiting for?
Date: 11 May 2019
My course on ‘How to Write a CV That Gets a Job’ is out and about!
Are you considering joining?
[Link to course page]
So, here’s the thing. If you don’t get called for an interview within a month after writing a CV that follows the course guidelines, I will give you your money back!
That is a guarantee!
Your Top Questions Answered:
Q1: How long does this course offer last?
The course is open for you to join until May 14th and you may enrol by following this link [insert your link]!
Q2: Is it possible for someone to check my CV? I am in need for some advice.
Yes! Send your CV at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get back to you in no time!
Q3: Do I really need to enrol on ‘How to Write a CV That Gets a Job’ course?
Yes. It includes everything you need to know about CV writing that gets one step closer to where you want to go!
If you’re not yet sure about it, let me tell you this:
‘How to Write a CV That Gets a Job’ gives you the best tips, techniques and direction to succeed in your job search and make a great impression to employers.
This course will get you from jobless to employed. No matter who you are, where you live, or what you want, ‘How to Write a CV that Gets a Job’ is the master key to unlock your career potential and get you right at the top of the professional ladder.
Email Subject: I almost NEVER do this, but I’m doing it for you, Emma.
Date: 12 May 2019
I want to take a moment and thank you, Emma.
I’ve been feeling especially grateful lately for all the support I am getting from our community. There is nothing that brings me more joy than helping incredible people realize their career potential and aim higher in the professional life!
So, to show my thanks, I wanted to do something special for you:
I’m giving you 3 exclusive gifts…
Here’s how you get access:
For the next 48 hours, when you claim a spot at my online course, you will get exclusive access to these gifts:
Gift #1: A CV Checklist to find if your CV has everything it needs to make it pass the ATS – Applicant Tracking System.
Get yours today! – [Link to Checklist Download]
Gift #2: Request your free of charge 10-minute 1:1 coaching session and essential advice and tips on your CV.
Drop me an email at email@example.com and we will arrange this on a dedicated time that suits both!
Gift #3: Tell a friend and get a 15% discount off the next course!
Tell a friend about this course and get a discount for the next course that is down the line.
[Social Button Link – Recommend to a Friend]
Remember – your chance to claim your spot on ‘How to Write a CV that Gets a Job’
…to grab your value-packed CV checklist …
…to claim your free 1:1 CV consulting session…
…to get your 15% discount on the upcoming course…
…ends Sunday on May 14th at 11:59 PM ET, so claim your gifts now before you miss out…
Email Subject: Just one moment to say thank you.
Date: 13 May 2019
I have no words to thank you, Emma…
I’ve been feeling especially grateful lately for your support! There is nothing that brings me more joy than helping incredible people like you realise their full potential and advance in their professional life!
These are just a few of the kind words I received as an appraisal:
[More Examples of Testimonials]
I have to pinch myself that I get to wake up every day and do this for a living.
I am always looking to add value to your life in whatever way possible. I love the connection we have and would hate to lose it.
I look forward to continuing our journey together! I will continue working to help you create and make the most of all the opportunities that lie ahead in every aspect of life, especially in your career.
Email Subject: Last chance to claim your spot on ‘How to Write a CV That Gets a Job’.
Date: 13 May 2019, Time: 9:03
This is unbelievable.
I thought the last time I released ‘How to Write a CV That Gets a Job’ was crazy, but this is pure insanity…
I was up most of last night, drinking my favourite cherry-flavoured tea and answering emails from people about a CV class, which is part of my super exclusive, career-changing course.
I dozed off for a couple of hours and woke up early this morning to realize that it almost completely sold out! The response on the CV checklists and 1:1 coaching appointments that are on offer was impressive as well…
Click Here to See if Your Spot on ‘How to Write a CV That Gets a Job’ is Still Available!
Now is the time to get yours because…
We Are Almost Completely Sold Out!
After having 10 spots available yesterday, there are just 4 left, and from the looks of things they will be gone in a matter of hours.
Many people have asked if we can reserve them a copy since they are on holiday, or work trips, but it’s just not possible.
If you were sitting around thinking you would get your spot in the next couple of days…
It won’t be there.
Once these 4 spots are gone, they’re gone. So make sure you don’t miss out…!
If you’re sitting on the fence about this program, now is the time to act.
Email Subject: Last chance to claim your spot on ‘How to Write a CV that Gets a Job’ Course.
Date: 13 May 2019, Time: 10:45
This closes tonight!
Today is the last day to enroll in my in-depth career-changing course that has the power to get you one step closer to your dream job!
[Link to the course page]
When you enroll before midnight tonight, drop me an email and I can go over everything you need to know about the course!
Talk soon, Emma!
P.S. I did something interesting. I asked previous students of mine what they would tell someone who is thinking about joining the program.
Here is the direct quote:
‘This course about CVs is amazing. It helped me see things differently! On top of that, it got me the job at the company I always wanted!
If you want this to happen to you, I would love to help you out!
Email Subject: The offer to enrol on the ‘How to Write a CV That Gets the Job’ course ends…on midnight!
Date: 13 May 2019, Time: 22:00
We are only a couple of hours away to saying goodbye to the offer on ‘How to Write a CV that Gets the Job’ and it feels like it’s the end of an era…
Check if Your Spot on the course is Still Available!
If you want to join the course, you still have some time to do so before it’s gone!
[Link to the course page]
Talk to you soon!
With this email sent as the last in the email sequence, you close off the course launch email marketing campaign. It’s important to tell your audience that this doesn’t mean the end, and that you are going to keep in touch sharing further information, learning material and of course, online courses.
Don’t forget an email sequence is just the start of the journey! Once you build your mailing list, you need to communicate with your audience frequently and keep sending those newsletters, stories, testimonials, and business updates. This helps to stay in touch with your audience and could just include 1 or 2 emails per week.
Last tips for writing great email sequences:
Upon that very last point, we offer a couple of extra ideas to get you started…
Bonus: Email Subject Ideas for Inspiration
Email subject titles can be smart, funny, informative but they can also be off-putting and misleading sometimes. Getting them right matters as they set the tone of each email and prepares the reader of what it’s going to follow.
Also, it’s the first thing people get to see on the email and they need to be attention-grabbing to entice them to click and open the email. When you create email subject titles for email sequences, they need to be carefully chosen since these are leading the way to your course launch and serve a specific goal.
The goal is either:
…leading them this way to the decision to take the next step!
Here are a few examples of good subject lines to use:
Get some more inspiration and write catchy titles for your courses or emails.
Email subject titles and to a greater extent, email sequences are all about setting the scene, feeding the inbox of your email subscribers with useful content and information.
It’s a marketing tool that communicates well with the public and builds on engagement and interaction with your existing leads, nurturing them on becoming your potential students.
Isn’t that a great reason to start using them? Good luck with building your own email sequences, and if you need any help, you know where to find us!
The Ultimate Guide To Selling Online Courses (vol 1)
Kyriaki is a Content Creator for the LearnWorlds team with more than three years of experience in digital marketing. Graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a Guidance degree, she has equipped herself with hands-on experience in education management and career guidance.