course name that sells


3 steps you need to follow to come up with an irresistible name for your online course

course name that sells

When Giving Your Course a Name it is very important to give the best of your efforts because it will determine to a large extent where that cause will attract prospective students or not.

Everyone judges books by their covers.

It’s not right…but we can’t help it. It’s just human nature.

That’s why you need your online course to have a cover that draws people in…and in the world of online courses, your book cover is your course name or course title.

In this guide, I’ll teach you the exact 3 steps you need to follow to come up with an irresistible name for your online course.

You Can Follow Along With These Steps By Using This Course-Naming Worksheet:

Get the worksheet

Note: These steps assume that you already know the topic of your online course and that you have validated demand (i.e., you know what content you want to cover). If you haven’t decided on a topic yet, I recommend that you check out this post on how to find your niche.

Step 1: Identifying Your Target Audience When Giving Your Course a Name

The most common mistake people make when starting an online business is that they don’t have a clear idea of who their potential customers are.

When you know exactly who your target audience is, you can do things like:

  • Identify their pain points
  • Figure out where to find them (in terms of marketing channels)
  • Use the right language to attract them

All of these are critical to coming up with a good name for your course.

I’ll teach how you can easily identify your target audience.

Start with a broad demographic segment.

We’ll begin by describing your audience using very general demographic information.

Here are some questions you can ask yourself (you don’t really need to answer all of them or have highly accurate data about any of these, just answer based on your experience):

  • Is your audience mostly located in a specific country?
  • What language does your audience speak?
  • Are they mostly male, female, or evenly represented?
  • What’s their level of education?
  • What age-range are most of them in?

Note that the points above describe my audience in very broad strokes—that’s ok! Next, we’ll start to narrow down.

Identify Sub-Segments

Once you have a very general idea of who you want to target, you’ll start to notice that there are several clearly defined groups of people with similar characteristics within what you just described.

Right now, you should make a list of who these people are and pick the one you think would benefit the most from your course.

Introduce psychographics 

Finally, we’ll get into the specifics of how this group of people behaves and why (that’s what psychographics are).

Try to answer these questions about your target audience:

  • What are their goals?
  • What are they interested in?
  •  Next is  What do they fear?
  • What are their challenges?
  • What do they believe in?
  • From which culture are they?

It’s easy to make the mistake of answering these questions within the boundaries of the topic of your course. Instead, you should try to find deeper, more general answers that relate to them as individuals—we’ll get to the course later.

Putting It All Together

Now that you’ve gone 3 levels deep into identifying a target audience for your course, it’s time to summarize your work.

You don’t need to write every descriptor you came up with, just try to describe your target audience in a sentence or two.

Step 2: Crafting a Transformation  When Giving Your Course a Name

The previous step is super important but I’ll be honest: it is sort of boring.

This is where the fun begins.

At Smart Infopreneur Academy, we believe transformations are a great way to communicate the value of an online course.

Under this step, I’ll show you how to:

Which one of these phrases do you find more inspiring/exciting/attractive?

  1. Learn leatherwork
  2. Turn old leather bag into beautiful and functional pieces of art

The first might be great phrasing for a leatherwork-tool operations manual, but I doubt if it will get many customers as an online course.

The second one, on the other hand, takes the reader on a journey with a clearly defined beginning and end…a transformation.

Remember why people take courses in the first place—they want to change something about their lives. By the end of your course, your students will know something they didn’t know before.

The reason I like this framework is that it covers transformations across a broad spectrum—from functional to emotional.

To fill this matrix, you should answer these questions:

  1. What does a prospective student have before taking your course? What will they have after they finish it?
  2. How does a prospective student feel before taking your course? How will they feel after they finish it?
  3. Who are they before taking your course? Who will they be after finishing it?

Most people only go as far as answering the “have” questions, but a truly powerful transformation will also communicate who your customers will “be” after taking the course.

This information is invaluable when it comes to writing a truly compelling copy.

If you’ve gotten this far, you only have one more step to go.

Step 3: Writing an Exciting, Specific, and Benefit-Driven Name – When Giving Your Course a Name

Now that we have all the ingredients for a great name, all we need to do is put everything together.

There are three rules to writing a great course name:

  1. It should be benefit-driven
  2. The name should be specific
  3. It should convey emotion

Writing a benefit-driven name

Let’s start with the most important one: your course name should be benefit-driven. This is where your transformations come into play.

You just need to summarize those transformations into a single, short sentence.

I recommend that you use a healthy combination of “have”, “feel”, and “is” transformations to write your name:

  • If you rely too much on the “have” transformation, your name will lack the emotional elements that inspire people to act.
  • If you go to the other side of the spectrum and write a name that is entirely about the “is” transformation, people might be confused about what your product actually is.


For my course, I have decided to go with:

EBook Publishing Mastery: A Guide to Becoming a New York Times Bestseller 

The first half of the title clearly communicates what this course is about, while the second half introduces the emotional element of my transformation.

It’s important that you keep your course name relatively short so it’s easy to remember, but you can always add more detail with a subheading or course description

Adding Specificity 

Second, you should focus on being specific.

I recommend that you add specificity to your course name by adding a quantifiable element to your benefit. These are some things you might consider:

  • Can you quantify the outcome of your transformation? How many times better is the outcome than the initial state?
  • Then how long will it take the student to achieve the transformation? How much time are you saving them?
  • How many steps will it take a student to complete the transformation?

Important: Notice how none of the bullet points above mention anything about the length of your course. Avoid including claims like “12 hours of content” or “45 lectures” which don’t relate directly to the transformation or benefit of your course.


How to Build a Profitable and Fully Automated Digital Products Business (in 60 Days or Less)

People pay for convenience.

Conveying Emotion 

Finally, to evoke an emotional response, I recommend that you include power words in your course name.

Power words can be used to trigger emotion, excitement, or curiosity.

Here are some examples of power words I like to use for different situations:

  • Firstly, the power words to elicit curiosity: secret, surprising, inspiring, unexpected, shocking.
  • Secondly, the power words to evoke speed: hack, tricks, tips, and kick-start.
  • Thirdly, the power words to communicate comprehensiveness: complete, ultimate, comprehensive, detailed, and entire.

Are you ready to get started?

You just need to follow these three simple steps to write your own irresistible course name:

  1. Identify your target audience
  2. Craft a transformation
  3. Write an exciting, specific, and benefit-driven course name

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