An Inside Look at Running a Multi 7-Figure Course w/ Mark Webster & Gael Breton from Authority Hacker
Throughout this video, you’ll get the inside story of how they did it and an inside look at how they run their course.
They share some valuable lessons they’ve learned along the way and some key insights that you can use to grow your own course or membership program.
If you’d like to learn more about affiliate marketing from Mark and Gael, you can check out their free, in-depth training on their homepage here…
How Authority Hacker Started
In 2015 Mark and Gael launched Authority Hacker after selling their marketing agency they had built up to a 30+ person company. Throughout their time running that agency, they had been internally documenting their process they followed whenever they started a new affiliate website for themselves. They took all of their standard operating procedures (SOP’s) and systems they’d documented, then turned that into the first version of their course called “The Authority Site System”.
At the time that was sold as a $29 product that consisted of about 5 videos.
Today that course, and their other main program, ‘Authority Hacker Pro’ generates a multiple seven figures a year. It’s now helped train over 7,000 students how to create their own affiliate authority sites and has grown into a massive library of valuable content.
What You’ll Learn Throughout This Video…
Mark and Gael share some of the main ingredients that helped contribute to their success with their course. You’ll also get an inside look at how their course evolved to where it is today.
They mentioned the “quality of their courses content and the value it delivers” as one of their main growth drivers since they started. The other big piece is the enthusiasm of their community. They’ve built their audience up significantly over the years in their niche, the affiliate marketing space. Which is tied back to the huge amount of value they deliver through the content that they consistently deliver to their audience.
The other interesting take away is they run their course more like a membership instead of a one off course.
When a customer buys one of their courses, they get access to lifetime updates to that course. Mark and Gael make a ton of updates consistently to both courses. It’s a big part of what they attribute to the success of their program. This helps build up a lot of long term goodwill with their customers that ends up paying them back in lots of other ways.
The other important thing here is Mark and Gael really care about their members and what they have to teach. They’ve devoted almost everything to help their students be successful. This is a big part of what separates them from most other course creators and what makes their course so great. They share their candid opinion on what it’s really like running a course at this size.
Discover the most important lessons they’ve learned along the way and find out about the sales strategy that’s worked best for generating new sales for their course.
Mark and Gael run their course with Memberium for ActiveCampaign, ActiveCampaign as their CRM (obviously), LearnDash, Elementor and Astra as their theme. In this video, you’ll get an inside look at how their course and WordPress site is structured on the inside (14:10).
Elementor allows them to design their site the way they want with its drag and drop builder. LearnDash controls the learning management aspect of their site. Memberium for ActiveCampaign controls the membership part and access to their site that’s delivered automatically with ActiveCampaign.
Most of the things they talk about can apply to anyone using ActiveCampaign, Infusionsoft or really any marketing CRM platform or any membership platform. Mark and Gael share their experience of switching from Ontraport to ActiveCampaign and their opinion on using “all-in-one” type of platforms in their business.
Other Valuable Lessons You Can Apply to Your Course or Membership…
Course Pricing Models
In 2015 they started out with 5 videos sold as a one time fee for $29. They switched their courses pricing a bunch of times. Over time going back and forth from different subscription offers to different one time prices. They finally found their sweet spot with where they’re at today. They figured out their average customer lifetime value, then multiplied it by two. Which is about $2k to access their higher level course.
Course Update Changelog
This was a cool idea we’ve never seen before. Mark and Gael are constantly making small updates to the course that their students have access to for life. To keep track of these and inform their members, they’ve included a detailed changelog letting their students know what new updates they’ve made to specific sections of their program.
What it takes to grow a course over the long term
Learn about the evolution of the Authority Hacker brand and discover how it grew from just a $29 product with five videos, to a multi seven-figure business per year.
Running a course like a membership with an insane amount of value included
Once someone buys their course, they get access to it, and all the future updates they make to that course, for life. Find out the surprising effect this had on their business and allowed them to grow really fast.
Switching from MemberMouse and “All-in-One” Software Solutions
See why Gael and Mark weren’t happy with MemberMouse as their membership plugin and why they don’t like using “All-in-One” software solutions for their business.
A Surprising Way to Reduce Their Refund Rate
In an analysis of everyone who’s refunded their course, they found 90% of those customers hadn’t joined their premium Facebook group they offer with their course. If someone did join, it significantly reduces the chance they’ll ask for a refund.
This gave Mark and Gael something specific to work on improving in their courses onboarding. They also came up with a unique way to better welcome their new members with a personal touch that simultaneously encouraged them to join their Facebook group. Find out what they did and what effect it had on reducing their refund rate in the full video (24:40).
Their Best Online Course Sales Strategy
Gael breaks down one of their best strategies for generating new sales with their course. It starts with people searching for relevant keywords related to their course on Google. Through these pages, they offer an in depth, free training that’s about two hours long. This presentation is ran as an automated evergreen webinar. This delivers a ton of value to anyone interested in learning more about what they have to teach and sets a strong first impression.
Then they offer a limited time discount (ran in an evergreen way using ActiveCampaign) on their lower level course. If someone doesn’t take that offer, they get offered a payment plan offer with the discount. All of these emails are delivered automatically through ActiveCampaign after that person opts in. That discount expires after a certain amount of time (also automated through ActiveCampaign).
If that person doesn’t buy up until that point, they continue to get longer term updates from being on Mark and Gael’s email list. Over time they build up more trust with people like this who end up converting later down the line.
Biggest Online Course Mistakes
Mark shares some of the biggest mistakes they’ve made in starting their program. He thinks one of the early ones is underpricing their program. To their surprise, every time they’ve raised their price, their conversion rates haven’t gone down.
Online Course Customer Service Advice
Mark and Gael share some quick tips on how to run an efficient customer service department when you own an automated online course. They use HelpScout for their support ticket system. “What gets measured, gets improved.” They talk about how they’ve improved their customer support team over time and how it’s evolved. They also share some quick tips on hiring good people for your company.
Other Video Highlights
- How Mark and Gael get feedback from their customers and approach improving their courses content over time.
- Including clear goals or action steps with each individual lesson has helped their students get better results and outcomes from their program.
- How they found out where certain members were getting stuck in their course shortly after starting using LearnDash and what they did to get them unstuck.
- Hear about Gael and Mark’s strategy for keeping their members engaged with their course.
- See how Gael uses Memberium autologin links to allow people who purchase their course to automatically log in right after submitting their ThriveCart order form. They also use auto login links when they email all of their members with updates.