Social media content strategy? To promote your online course?
Do you even need it? Should you hire it out? What should you even say so you aren’t turning your social feeds into a sales pitch with every post?
The questions around using social to promote your online course are mind-boggling.
And then… there’s the very nature of social media.
It’s addictive. 😬
It can be a real time sink. Ask someone who’s experienced losing 3 hours to an Instagram scroll.
Yes. There are good reasons people dislike social media as much as they dislike spiders.
Social can feel like you’re floating in a clickbaity troll-haven, full of controversial triggers that give us our daily dose of FOMO along with its constant companion – comparisonitis.
On top of everything else, it’s another marketing strategy to master.
So, yeah, I get it – there’s A LOT to hate.
But I gotta tell you: I ❤️ love social media.
Facebook & the ‘Gram are our water coolers of choice.
For all its flaws, social media has the incredible potential to bring people together. For online course creators, specifically, social can be a powerful ingredient in launch strategy.
It connects you with your audience, grows your community and your business.
It gives you a chance to show up in front of the very people you want to serve and to do it while having fun. Looking at you, Reels.
It can, in fact, be as easy and rich as connecting with people in person.
IF you know what to say and how to say it.
Which is why I have a FULL module in Ready-to-Sell that is dedicated to using social the sleaze-free way to connect with your audience and sell your course.
Interested in mastering the sales and copywriting strategy that helps you sell more courses without the ick and the hustle? Drop details below to be a part of the next Ready-to-Sell cohort.
Promoting your online course is crucial. But it doesn’t have to be painful.
Which brings me to my 4S Formula or rather, Recipe for an overwhelm-free social media strategy to help you use social with intention and impact.
The 4S Social Media Content Strategy Recipe: Easy-peasy Ingredients to Promote Your Online Courses for Profitable, Meaningful Online Launches
Posting on social media channels becomes easy when you not only know what to post but also what content to include AND the purpose behind that post.
Help your audience know and like you
Snapshots of Your Life
Strengthen that connection
Build trust and authority
Your Offer & Pitch
Encourage your audience to take action to learn from you or work with you
Here’s how to use the 4S Recipe for outlining content to share your online course without feeling icky or sleazy
📖 Stories – Your WHY (AKA your origin story)
Your Stories posts highlight your USP in a personal way. It gives you an opportunity to share your past, your narrative, and “big picture” vision with posts that share:
- Your “This Is Us” story – What brought you here? What motivates you?
- A flashback “moment in history.”
- Bumps and lessons learned along the way.
- Who you are & what you believe (your values).
- How you stand out from the crowd.
- Sharing your vision for your business
📷 Scenes – Snapshots of your biz and life
This ingredient is the easiest to pull off because social media is made for quick, digestible snapshots 🤳🏽 of your life and business.
The purpose of a “Scenes” post is to prime interest and gets your audience excited, and bring people into your world with posts such as:
- Snapshots of your day
- Sharing a sneak-peek of your content or course
- Using images/word pictures (ie. powerful quote) to capture the moment
- Behind the scenes glimpses of your life & biz
- Sharing “Client Love” Highlights
- A day in the life vignettes (something you overheard, situational side notes that you can relate to your business or audience).
🎓 Sage – Your inner-Gandalf 🧙 emerges
With your Sage posts, you’ll share your wealth of knowledge generously so you can educate your audience, build the trust factor and solidify your expert status with posts such as:
- POV posts and Op-Ed on a related topic
- Share actionable tips and strategies for a quick win
- Walk-through a specific approach or process
- A list of what NOT to do
- Authority boosting – mini audit or teardown or “mini-lesson”
- Anything that leverages your expertise
💰 Sell – The straight goods & the proof in the pudding
Now, this is no 💪 strong-arm sell.
At this point, you have already been building interest and engagement with your audience, so you won’t need to go in all hardcore and hustle-y.
This is selling with intention, assuring your audience that they’ve come to the right place with posts such as:
- Social proof & testimonials (strengthening your credibility)
- Case Studies or Before/After post
- Webinars & Facebook lives with a Q&A
- Social media ads
- Offer updates & pertinent promos
- A straight-forward pitch – if they have been following your content, your offer & its value will be highly relevant
Creating a Social Content Plan to Promote Your Online Course
There’s no complicated Matrix to follow. ⬆➡⬇⬅
There’s no hard and fast rule because each “S” – Stories, Scenes, Sage and Sell have a common goal – build a connection and start a conversation.
All social posts should include one of the ingredients or it can be a hybrid-combination such as:
✔️ A Scene post like a “throwback snapshot” that merges with a Sage “lessons learned” post
✔️ A Stories post of a conversation you overheard that combines into a “Day in the Life” Scenes post
The fluidity between each ingredient allows for your post content to be repurposed (a huge time-saver, btw) with posts like:
✔️ Client testimonials featured in Sell posts can be repurposed into a Story post describing your unique process
✔️ A case study in a Sell post can be repurposed into a quick spotlight on something you are working on in Scenes
✔️ A snappy quote or excerpt in a Scenes post can be weaved into an actionable tip for a Sage post
Your GOAL is to build a relationship with your audience and give them the confidence to determine if they want a nudge closer into your orbit or move on elsewhere.
Mark Schaefer describes social media as a series of person-to-person “micro-interactions” or, simply put, baby steps to humanizing your brand and closing the gap between “us” and “them.”
Before we wrap up, a word:
Don’t forget to leave some whitespace in your calendar.
At Content Bistro, we follow a 90-day “Big Picture” guide, but we only plan a month in advance, so we have the flexibility to be spontaneous.
Life happens (Like World Nutella Day!), things change in your business – so make sure you have wiggle room to adjust.
And yes, love it or hate it, if you must use social media, you might as well make it easy, fun, and worth everyone’s while. Right?
Used the right way, each post is an opportunity to start and continue a conversation.
The conversation may not be perfect. It might even be a little messy.
But what’s important is to start a conversation.
Ready to start connecting with your audience to build relationships, create communities and yes, serve them your courses?
Drop those details below to roll right to the head of the line for Ready-to-Sell.