If you have ever launched a course before – or honestly, even if you haven’t – you’ve probably know just how much marketing has to go into this. Marketing a course, launch is a lot of work and it can feel overwhelming and frustrating and just downright tiring. And it doesn’t have to be that way necessarily.

There’s a lot of things that go into a course launch, but there are some things that can make it a lot easier. Video, for one thing, is a really great way to market a course – or really anything! – because video is engaging and it’s just plain getting reach right now on social media. And social media is one of the big ways that we market our courses online without paying money, anyway.

So, if you want to get your course launch marketed really well, video is the way to go. But it can be time consuming and maybe you’re not comfortable on video and you just don’t feel like you have a good setup, or whatever it happens to be that’s holding you back. Maybe video doesn’t feel like it’s the way to go.

And if that’s the case, word of mouth can be a really good way to do it, but word of mouth is also hard to get going, especially if you haven’t launched your course yet. So maybe this is your first time launching this course, or you have had course launches of this before, but it hasn’t gone the way you wanted. Maybe you don’t have all the word of mouth going that you want.

So what do you do in that case? If your course hasn’t launched, then people don’t know to talk about it. And if it has launched and you haven’t gotten word of mouth going before… how you do it now? That’s probably some of the questions that you’ve asked yourself; I know I’ve asked myself that in the past.

But ways that you can actually get people talking about your course before it launches – you can even get people promoting your course before it launches, which is just kind of my blowing, let’s be honest. It’s so hard to get people to do this in the first place, much less before the course even launches, but I promise it is possible. We’ll talk about that in just a second.

Another great way to get your course launch marketing going is to create community – that can get that word of mouth going – but creating community around something that hasn’t launched yet? I mean, how do you do that? How do you get people excited and talking about it and engaging with each other and with you before your course launches? I mean, that may not seem like it makes sense.

And course launch marketing can also feel contrived. Aside from everything we’ve talked about – the video and the word of mouth and the community and all that – let’s be real: we’ve all seen course launches where just feels fake. You can tell it’s marketing, you know they just want your money, and it just feels good and gross and like something you never want to do.

So how do you get around all of these problems that come with course launch marketing? I have really, honestly, one simple solution for you that could change your entire approach to course launches. It’s virtual summits! And that may sound a little bit weird, but course launches really need all of these things – they need the community, they need excitement. They need to build trust and you need to get people that are willing to buy from you.

So, summits create opportunities to make content as well. So you’re going to have videos from you and your speakers, and you can also have content in your Facebook group that you’ll create around your summit. So you could be doing live videos. You could be doing audio if you’re not comfortable on camera. You could be having your speakers go in and do live video. And you can repurpose all of this live video to help market your summit and your course launch, because your course launch can piggyback off of your summit.

So you run a summit and then after your summit is over, you have all of these new people in your audience who are primed and ready to buy from you. They trust you they’re excited, they’re ready for something new to build on everything they’ve learned in the summit and your course is going to be the perfect way for them to do that. So it just makes sense for them to buy the course from you when they’re all done with the summit.

Summits are also a really, really great way to get other people talking about your course launch topic – maybe not necessarily your course, but the topic of your course – before it actually launches. So they may not realize it, but they are doing guerilla marketing for you. And it’s not sleazy, you’re not taking advantage of them because you are giving them value. You’re giving them value through your summit – which is totally free most of the time – and so it’s just common sense and natural for them to be talking about the summit topic, which happens to also be around your course topic. So it’s a really organic and easy way to get people talking about your course before it launches. And before you’ve actually really talked about it.

Summits also create that community. So the community can help get that word of mouth going. It gets people excited and they’re talking about your summit and they’re talking about all the things that are learning in your summit. So they’re already in an educational mindset there they’ve been learning from you and your speakers for however many days that your summit is going. Maybe you do an action day as the last day of your summit so they’re implementing everything they’ve learned and they’re starting to see results and they’re getting excited and they’re telling other people about all these results that they’re getting, and everybody’s just getting psyched up together. And they’re building their trust with you because they’ve been talking with you throughout the summit, they’ve been seeing your face everywhere and you feel like a friend by then. And people like to help support friends, but they also like to get value. So it just makes sense for them to buy the course, if they’re ready for that after the summit is over.

So summits also offer organic talking points for marketing. This is my favorite thing about using summits as part of your marketing plan, is it’s totally organic! You’re already offering something for free, so you naturally don’t feel sleazy talking about it. You’re not asking them for money; you’re just asking them to give you your email address so that they can get the summit schedule, so they can show up for it.

And that way, you can talk about it and you don’t have to feel like you’re saying, “Hey, give me money. I know you don’t really know me yet but my course is awesome and I know you’ll get a lot of value out of it. So you want to give me money, please. Money, please!” And that’s weird. Nobody likes to do that. Those are the kind of marketing tactics that we all try to avoid.

So summits give you that way that you can say, “Hey. You want to learn more about this. Come to this summit,” and then after the summit’s over, you can go, “Hey, wanna learn more about this, ’cause we’ve been talking about this for three days – five days, however long your summit is – you should jump into the course because I would love to talk to you more about this. I’ve already seen how much it’s affected your business  -or your life or whatever your summit is doing – and I would love to see you take that next step to make even more out of this.”

And it’s a natural next step for them. If you position your course right through a summit, it’s the logical place for people to go after that because they want more results. They’ve started seeing results. They feel like they’ve been learning from you and from the speakers and they trust you, so why wouldn’t they go and check out your course once it’s done?

I know summits can feel a little bit overwhelming in and of themselves though. But honestly, they’re one of the past marketing tactics, because like I said, it’s totally organic. It’s free. It builds your audience for free. You don’t have to spend a boatload on marketing because that sucks. But you can go and do this in about three months, so probably about the timeframe you’d be allotting to put together your course launch marketing plan anyway, and you can just piggyback off your summit and you can make money at the same time – which who doesn’t want that? – Because you’re going to be offering your all access pass or whatever else you happen to offer as an upsell from the summit. So the summit is free, but maybe they spend 97 bucks or 197 bucks and get access to the replays after they’ve expired, the transcripts, maybe your speakers throw in bonuses. You’re making money at the same time as you’re building the perfect audience for your course launch.

So if you want to learn more about how to build your own summit and build this buzz around your course launch before it’s even ready to launch, go ahead and sign up for the free Sell With a Summit: Course Creator Edition. We made this just for you. I teamed up with Krista from Summit in a Box and we put together an amazing summit and yes, it’s a summit about summits, but hey, that’s what we do.

So you can go ahead and sign up for free. You’ll get access to over 25 speakers who are experts in courses and summits. You’ll learn everything from the basics to advanced marketing tactics, like using chatbots and funnels and my absolute favorite one, which is custom boxes, which you can use for your summit and your course. My friend Mark Stern is… he’s blown my mind so many times with custom boxes, so that’s one that you’ll really, really want to check out. So go ahead and head over to sellwithasummit.com. Go ahead and sign up for the Course Creator Edition and I would absolutely love to see you in there. I want to see your course launch succeed and virtual summits are a killer way to do that. See you soon.

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