2. What should your course be called?

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The Robora · What should my course be called? (m1, t2)

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When I wanted to launch a course with a PR focus, I started off calling it ‘DIY PR’. I wanted to make it clear that I was teaching people how to do their own PR, rather than hiring an agency to do it. But I later changed the name to ‘how to secure your own press coverage’.

I needed people to read the header and understand exactly what they’d be learning. Both titles worked, but the second one worked better. I then had a conversation with one of the women who’d taken my course and she said the ‘DIY PR’ name had sold it to her. So I added it back in.

Next, I launched a course called ‘Making the leap from employment to self-employment’. This title was too wordy, too long and people had to think about it rather than instantly understanding what they’d learn from doing the course.

I change the name to ‘Become your own Boss‘ and it started to sell. It’s shorter, snappier and clearer.

You need to be thinking about SEO – search engine optimisation. This is a big topic but the gist of it is that good SEO gets you to the top of Google searches. So you want someone to type your course title into Google and for your course to be the first one they come across.

This happens when…

  1. The title is spot-on.
  2. People are clicking through to your course; this makes it rise in the Google ranks.
  3. People are linking to your course – on their own website or social media channels.

Top tip

To work out what people will type into Google, to find a course in your niche, start typing some ‘key words’ into Google search yourself. For instance, for my PR course, I could type: PR, DIY PR, press coverage, get press coverage.

As you type, Google presents the most commonly searched questions and ideas relating to these words. This will probably give you some ideas about what to name your course.

When you feel you’ve found a good course name, something that people might type into Google, see what website pages feature at the top of that Google search. You want to replace them in the top spot, so how can you make yours a little more niche, or just better?

Avoid metaphors

People are often tempted to incorporate metaphor or a play on words but while this might sound nice or funny, it’s not what people will search for. For instance, I could have named my PR course: Say My Name (as it’s about getting your name and brand out there) but no one will type that into Google if they’re looking for a course teaching them how to get press coverage.

So be explicit.

The name might sound boring but what’s more boring is finding a fancy name and then selling no spaces on your course because a) no one understands what it’s about from the title and b) they can’t find it when they search online. You will sell more spaces if people immediately understand what they’ll learn from your course.

Make sure you have the key words in there; that is – the words that immediately spring to mind when thinking about this subject….

Some examples:

  • How to become a freelance journalist
  • Using your iPhone to make a feature-length documentary
  • Baking the perfect cheese soufflé
  • A foolproof technique for home manicures
  • How to build a garden studio for £5000
  • GDPR: What you need to know about storing people’s information
  • Using Facebook ads to sell your online course

A tip: if you’re getting stuck on names – ask around. People often love having some input and you’ll also be doing some subtle PR; getting word around the place that you’ll soon be launching an online course on that topic.