Stop me when this sounds familiar... You launch a new course. You decide to discount it because you want to have a successful launch. You end up making some good money when the course goes live, but now it's time to remove the discount and increase the price back to normal. Sales stall out in the coming weeks and months and you're scrambling trying to get them back up. You remember that the discounted course sold when you launched, so you discount it... again. "It's just temporary," you tell yourself. "I just need some quick sales." The cycle repeats over and over again until, eventually, the course isn't selling unless it's discounted. You're on the discount rollercoaster and can't get off.
I've seen this scenario play out over and over and over again. If you've been stuck on the discount rollercoaster, this post will share some tips to help you end the ride. If you're getting ready to launch your course, you'll learn why it's important to avoid (most) discounts in the first place.
Before we get too far, let me say this: I'm not telling you to never discount your course. I actually have no problem with discounts.The key is to know that not all discounts are created equal. Let's quickly look at the different types of discounts and promotions we encourage clients to run.
When you're launching a new course, it's okay to offer a slight discount (10-15% max). We do like to set some ground rules here, though. When we're helping clients launch, the discount is only offered to an email waitlist for a temporary period of time. We want the discount to be a lead generator that also rewards your early customers.
Most of our clients offer some type of Black Friday or Cyber Monday sale. They have one sale per year and then they don't run another until the next year. Maybe you'd like to capitalize on holiday spending, or maybe your course has another time of year you can run a promotion.
Proceed with caution on this one. You may also consider offering discounts when you partner with other brands. Typically, these brands will promote your course and offer a slight discount to their audience. Just be smart about the brands you partner with and how the discount is structured.
On paper, it makes sense to discount a course. You're trying to generate some quick sales and a discount helps you do that. The problem with frequently discounting your course goes a little deeper:
You get it. No more discounting. But what do you do if you're stuck on the discount rollercoaster? How the heck do you get off? Here are a few tips.
The end goal here is to have a normal, fixed price that's higher than the discount. We need to start preparing for that by raising the perceived value of the course. We are eventually going to drop the discount, but we need to make the course feel extremely valuable in the meantime. You might consider adding...
All of these things enhance the course and make it feel more expensive.
After you've added value to the course, stop discounting it. Seriously. Make a clean break and don't allow yourself to discount it again. This is more of a mindset thing than anything else, so just remember: your course is valuable. You've added useful bonuses in tip 1 and created a product that can solve your customer's problems. You deserve to sell it at this price and your audience needs what you have to offer. Now, if that's still a struggle...
We had a client who was discounting their courses every. single. Sunday. It was literally the only day they would get any sales because their audience knew a discount was coming. It would have been incredibly challenging for them to just stop cold Turkey, and their courses had already been devalued so much, a few extra bonuses wouldn't have helped enough to make a difference. Instead, they decided to restructure their courses by combining some content, refilming a few things, and adding resources. They went from 6 courses down to 3. In the process, they were able to increase the price of all of their courses (from between $39-$79 to a consistent $139) and get off the discount rollercoaster once and for all. Of the tips on this list, this one requires the most work and planning, so be sure it's something you absolutely want to commit to. Discounting your course can be a slippery slope, and it's important to consider the consequences before you offer discounts. When you discount your course, people may see it as less valuable, and they may be less likely to purchase it at full price. If you're stuck on the discount rollercoaster, hopefully this post will help end the ride!