When instructor Bogdan Milanovich posted on Reddit about his Udemy course, I’m not sure if he was prepared for what happened next.
In under two days, 500 people enrolled in his course. Let’s be clear about one thing: all of these students enrolled in his course for free. However, keep reading to learn how this strategy can cause a ripple effect of paid signups for you (especially important if you have under 100 students enrolled in your course(s)).
PART I: WHY IT’S SMART TO POST A FREE CODE FOR YOUR COURSE ON REDDIT
Although all 500 students enrolled for FREE, this can cause a ripple effect of PAID student signups. Here’s why:
- Courses with more students convert at higher rates than courses with less students. Think about it, if you saw two courses on Knitting for Beginners and “Course A” had 40 students and “Course B” had 500 students, which one would you more likely enroll in? If you have the opportunity to boost your enrollment numbers, you should take it. It will help your conversion rates with other prospective students because it boosts your social proof.
- The more students you have enrolled, the more it boosts your credibility. Since Udemy is a marketplace, potential students will size you up alongside comparable courses. They will evaluate your bio, course trailer, and outline along with the number of students and positive reviews.
- The Reddit users who enrolled in the course, probably would not have heard about or paid for Bogdan’s course otherwise. If Bogdan hadn’t posted about his course on Reddit, chances are that the people who enrolled may not have ever heard of his course. He took the opportunity to market to a new community who otherwise wouldn’t have paid for his course anyway. Therefore, he was not cannibalizing paid sales or losing out on income.
- Now Bogdan can cross sell the 500 FREE students and have them become PAID students for future courses he publishes. If the students like Bogdan’s first course, then chances are they will be willing to pay for the next course(s) he publishes. Pro Tip: Make sure you have a course with high engagement and interaction (e.g. quizzes, bonus material, interaction with you) because students will be more likely to enroll in future courses.
PART II: HOW TO POST YOUR COURSE ON REDDIT (and not disrespect the community)
Now that we discussed WHY posting a FREE coupon for your course on Reddit is valuable, let’s reveal HOW to post.
Udemy instructor Jay Mutzafi gained 70+ students for his course when posting on Reddit (and we have since had many instructors get hundreds of students using this method), and he contributed to the pointers below:
- Create a coupon code with “REDDIT” in the title and include it in your post.
- Find the right subreddit to post in. Jay tried posting in two areas—the first did not get traction but the second earned him 70+ subscribers. Pay attention to how many subscribers the subreddits have. You can see on the right side how many subscribers each subreddit contains. The more, the better, but targeting niche topics can be more effective at times. Jay posted to a niche subreddit called iPhonography and didn’t get upvotes, but then he posted to a slightly larger one called iPhone which work well. Be sure to experiment, based on your topic.
- Post something with an engaging title, good description, and don’t come off salesy or spammy. Write from a place of adding something valuable to the community. Reddit is divided into subjects, and people subscribe and see the posts of the subreddits (topics) they are interested in. They upvote or downvote posts (which are links, images, text etc.). Downvoted posts disappear quickly and upvoted ones get more visibility. You cannot offer something paid on Reddit because it’s not for commercial purposes.
- SEE ALEX MOZES’ POST HERE. He attracted over 150 new students to enroll in his Microsoft Excel Pivot Tables course in a weekend.
- SEE JAY’S POST HERE:
- SEE BOGDAN’S REDDIT POST HERE:
A couple things to be aware of: Reddit is just like any active online community. Don’t be surprised or offended by any trolls. :) Remember that you are making your high quality course available for them for FREE so that anyone enthusiastic about your topic can learn.
Keep in mind: 1) Choose a relevant subreddit to post in. 2) Submit a relevant, helpful, and genuine post. The more original and helpful your post is for the community, the less likely your chances of being the victim of trolls. Here is an excellent post from instructor Alex Mozes. I encourage you to spend fifteen minutes, and get creative with your post!
Here is some of the feedback from the Reddit community in response to Jay’s post (overwhelmingly grateful and positive): “Thanks man! I’m getting an iPhone in 2 weeks, and will be making a lot of videos. Hopefully after following your course they won’t suck. :D” “Watching now. Very inspirational.” “Thanks for doing this.”
Ask Redditers to leave a course review. Let Redditers know that if they’d like to thank you for sharing their course for free, you would appreciate a course review. Course reviews of 4-5 stars are great for building credibility and boosting conversion rates on your courses as well.
Try this strategy today, and let us know in the comments below how it goes for you. If you’re still unsure about how Reddit works, you can read our What is Reddit? post.