Everything You Need to Know About Online Courses (And How to Become a Course Creator)

Jenna Kutcher 

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September 21, 2023



After almost a decade (wow) of creating and launching my own digital courses, I still get some of the same questions from people who are interested in creating their own digital courses over and over again. And I love it.

The landscape and industry of online learning and course creation is only expanding, getting better, and glowing brighter as we learn more specific, fine-tuned ways of teaching people the things that help make their lives, businesses, relationships, and passions that much better for them. Some online courses make massive shifts in people’s lives, and some make tiny incremental changes. Either way, digital courses are incredible because they reach deeper and wider than you and I could ever do in person!

So, if you’re feeling that spark of curiosity and have your own questions about creating a digital course swirling in your head… good! Because I’m going to share with you some of the course-centric questions that frequent my inbox, ones that I think can help you gain important clarity on what creating a course is all about and how easy it might just be for you. Let’s dive in!

Q: Isn’t creating an online course an expensive process? What if I can’t make that kind of investment?

The great news about being a course creator is that the investment is entirely up to you. You can decide how big or small you can go up front. And you might be worried that it’s one of those things that, like building a house, once you’re in it, you feel like you have to keep spending money just to get to the finish line. With a digital course, because it’s yours and you get to decide what that ‘success’ gets to look like over time, you can get creative. My advice here is to spend your money on what’s going to help you get the farthest over time.

So, if you have a limited budget up front, spend money on what you can’t get anywhere else: course launching skills. Marketing mentorship. Vision and clarity. Knowing where and how to get your audience! Otherwise, the other skills you need are so easy to get on your own, like knowing how to link a video to your course or where to get stock photos for your sales page. The PLAN, like learning how to sell a course, will be your smartest investment.

Related: The Best Tools to Build Your Own Digital Course (Free & Paid)

Q: What if there’s already an online course out there on what I’d teach?

I love this question, because it was the loudest one in my head when I was thinking about creating my own course. There’s also probably someone out there who does what you do now, too—and yet it’s possible for you to figure out how to still succeed, yes?

Inside Digital Course Academy, my mentor-turned-business-BFF Amy Porterfield’s course creation program, Amy addresses this because it can actually be used to your advantage if you know how to go about validating your idea properly. 

Put it this way: Amy and I both teach courses about email list building — each in our own distinctly effective way. If I let the fact that another course existed on the topic I wanted to teach stop me (even one created by my BFF), I’d never be where I am today. You can’t let it stop you either.

Q: How do I know if I’m the right person to create a digital course? Who is it for—and who is it NOT for?

Let me be clear: not everyone should decide to be a course creator and build an online course. Course creation probably isn’t for you if you don’t have a track record already. If you’ve never gotten results for anyone—or yourself—then take some time to work on that before teaching anything! And if you care more about a “passive income stream” than serving up life-changing results for your students, again, then creating a course probably isn’t for you. (In fact, I’m always going into my programs and enhancing them for my students.)

But do you have a vision in your head of escaping the hamster wheel of never-ending work ON your business rather than doing what you love? Do you light up while teaching and sharing your craft? Do you know you’ve got an approach or method that you just know would impact other people’s lives if they knew it, too? These are telltale signs that you’re meant to be a course creator!

Related: 4 Key Decisions to Make Before Creating Your Online Course

Q: Selling the course I create is the part that intimidates me. How do I overcome that?

While selling in general can truly feel like a part of running a business that not everyone enjoys, there are two things to keep in mind about selling a course you create. First, let me encourage you that it’s a thousand times easier to talk about a course you’re not only proud of, but one that has a goal that is easy to talk about! In the course creation process, a focus should be “How would I talk about this to someone who has never heard about it before?”

When it comes time to sell, you’re already aware of why your course is a necessary solution for your future students. It makes writing the website copy or social media posts easy. It helps erase that connotation with selling that would feel like you’re “trying to convince people to buy” — and replaces it with the motivation to simple make sure people see the course’s goals and results clearly. That’s it. Which alleviates the stress during any and all parts of where and how you want to sell.

Second, if “selling” just feels like a dirty word for you (I get it), trust that your marketing process, your effective online ads, your communication process, your strategy for talking about it on socials, and your student community are what actually sells your course. Plug in the right pieces to your process and your course will sell!

Related: Can You Really Make Money with an Online Course?

Q: Is managing a course fairly time-intensive?

One of the major perks of creating your own course is that you get to determine the kind of time it can take up in your life. I knew that one of my primary goals in launching a course was to actually step away from that time-intensive mentorship and masterminds I was doing and be able to still serve while I had more time to breathe, live my life, and start and be present with my family.

Because you can automate the way you sell your course and serve your students, most of the time you’ll need to spend will be right up front when you’re creating the course (which is likely A LOT easier than you think) and in those moments when you want to LIVE-launch your course. It looks like short, attentive sprints spread out between much longer seasons of managing and fine-tuning the course to make sure everything is running smoothly.

Overall, the goal is actually to SAVE you time, and lots of it. Investing time up front will mean a whole lot of time saved in the future, while expanding your business, reach, and your income!

Q: How do I know what the best FIRST step is if I want to create my own digital course?

I love this question the most because it tells me you have that glimmer in your eye from seeing that potential course off in the distance and you want to know the directions. You’re like, “hello, google maps, tell me what my first turn is!” With that, I’ll go back to my response to that first question: start with mentorship.

Getting a clear vision of what YOUR course is, how to sell it, who to launch it to (and where to find them) and how to piece together your specific plan — isn’t something that can be googled. Instead of finding yourself late at night trying to see if a new AI app can tell you if your course idea is the right one, you can find yourself a course creation mentor… digitally!

The BEST way to learn about online courses? Turn your questions into ACTION.

If you want to really know the world of digital courses and do more than dip your toes in, now is the perfect time. My business bestie, Amy Porterfield, is also my first course creation mentor and the best of the best when it comes to helping people at their own digital course starting lines. She’s leading her signature online Course Creation Program, Digital Course Academy, where you can learn from her and with a cohort of incredible students who, like yourself, are ready to go from step one to step done with launching their first course!

She will teach you the mindset, the strategy, AND the tech. No matter your starting line, Amy will guide you every step of the way so that nothing holds you back. And you won’t be up late at night trying to Google your way to catching up with all the digital course jargon. Amy doesn’t assume you already know that. She SHOWS you!

Here’s what’s waiting for you in Digital Course Academy!

  • 6 Implementation Modules to learn digital course creation A-Z! We’re talking about ideating, creating, outlining, recording, and uploading – step by step by step! 
  • A complete, step-by-step launch plan showing you how to launch your program and get it out into the world (and in front of the people you created it for!) 
  • The Fill-Up Formula to bring in your perfect audience so that you can help them get results for FREE while you serve them and then sell with confidence. 
  • Next-level email marketing, sales page, and social media strategies so that you can position yourself as an expert, feeling more than ready to help people get results through your online course!

Instead of letting questions become barriers, the best way to truly gain ‘everything’ you need to know about courses is to finally step up to the plate and create one of your own! And Digital Course Academy is the most strategic, least complicated, and more supported way to do it without wasting your time, energy, or money.

It’s this recommendation I drop to everyone who comes to me with course curiosity. Amy’s got the roadmap you’ve been looking for (even if you didn’t know you were looking.) Because I bet you are looking for a way to have more time, more resources, and more access to live the life you really want to?

What’s inside of your bonus suite for the Digital Course Academy? 

I love this program and believe in it so much, I’m partnering with Amy to offer an exclusive bonus. When you join Digital Course Academy, you’re not only making sure you get your step-by-step course creation AND launch plan (yep, including strategy and how-to on webinars, ads, your email list) you’re also getting a free bonus from ME (valued at $1,997). The Jenna Kutcher Digital Course Academy Bonus Experience is my support system for the program, which is:

  • My Email List Accelerator mini course (to get your list ready and stoked for a course!)
  • My Customizable Course Workbook template (you’ll use this to give to the students of YOUR course!)
  • My super simplified Evergreen Model (yep, this is my template for how I automate my course launches!)
  • My Exact 6-Figure Launch Outline (a checklist I use to make sure I’m covering all my bases every single time I launch one of my courses!)
  • My Customizable Webinar Slide Deck (these are based directly off our most successful webinar presentations!)
  • The Strategy to Sell Your Offer Effectively Bonus Course with Jenna & Amy (you get to learn from both of us!)
  • AND the Next Level List Building Mini-Course (learn from 6 world class leaders and list builders in this brand new masterclass style module!)

Learn from both of us when you join the Digital Course Academy today. 

With Digital Course Academy + your free Jenna Kutcher Bonus Experience, you’ll find yourself on the other side with not just a clear roadmap for where you and your digital course are headed — you’ll be IMPLEMENTING what you know.

You can take the knowledge you already have, impact real lives with it in ways that don’t have to be GROUNDBREAKING in order to be undeniably important, and creating a stream of income for yourself that creates the room to live and breathe you’ve been craving. Now that’s what I call “everything you need to know about a course”.

Dive into the Digital Course Academy (while the doors to the course are still open!) and start your course journey with an incredibly supportive mentor and cohort of fellow students!

Ready to see how everything about a digital course can CHANGE YOUR LIFE?

Join the Digital Course Academy  + get my Bonus Experience for FREE!

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Before you get any further... Hi! I'm Jenna Kutcher!

A small town Minnesota photographer, podcaster, educator and puppy rescuer, my happiest days are spent behind my computer screen sharing my secrets with the world. I'm glad you're here.

I’m an expert at online marketing, a nerd when it comes to the numbers, and my obsession is teaching others how to make a living doing what they love (without it taking over their life). 

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