Monetize Your Book with a Course: Interview with Dr. Lucas Marino

If you’ve got a book, you need a course to go with it. Here’s my interview with the man who can help you do that, Dr. Lucas Marino, author of Monetize Your Book with a Course.

When you write a book, you’re making promises to your readers.

This will be worth your time. This will help you solve a problem. This will teach you to…

Even when your book delivers on those promises–even when that transformation is life-changing–you still only make a small portion of that $15 the person paid for your book.

But what if you had a course to go with your book? Well, then your book could show people that you are able to help them. The book becomes the calling card for the course, and you teach the same things for more money. If you’ve ever wondered how to do that, Dr. Lucas Marino’s How to Monetize Your Book with a Course is for you.

Write the book, and you’ve done the hardest part.

You’ve already done the hard work of research, organizing your information, and creating the content in written form. Even though the format of your course is different, the content remains roughly the same. Even better, you can hone it to meet the specific needs of your right fit client.

Once you’ve done the book, a course can be the next logical step for that ideal client. That’s great for you, because the course will naturally cost more than the book. And, once you’ve done the production work, most of the course fees belong to you.

Lucas says one mistake authors make creating a course is they sink too much into production costs before the course is proven. You don’t have to go all out. You can create a course with your smartphone camera, some lights, and a good microphone. If you keep production simple, you’re free to iterate as you find out what works for your clients.

They’re buying an outcome, the potential to reach an outcome. They’re not buying your course, they’re buying that opportunity.

Just like the people who buy your book, the people who buy your course are buying it to get an outcome. They have a problem, and your book (and your course) can help them solve their problem. You don’t have to (and shouldn’t) give them anything they don’t need to solve that problem. That’s another mistake course creators make.

Lucas says, “The worst thing you can do is overwhelm the learner with complexity, and actually make it harder for them to achieve results. Because they’ll leave dissatisfied. They won’t refer your course to people, and they’ll never achieve the outcome that you set to give them.”

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Courses don’t all follow the same format.

There are many ways to deliver a course. Lucas says audio is quickly becoming the go-to format for many, because we live such busy lives. “If you have a book and you have a popular audio book, you could create an audio course which has a lot of downloadable, or printable content accompanied by audio files that take them through the whole deal.”

If you don’t want to be on video, you can create an audio-only course or a course that uses animation or slideshows with narration. People learn in different ways, and you can create courses in different ways. Lucas can guide you through the process.

Would you rather watch the video version of this interview?

Monetize, but measure success by your client’s wins.

Of course, you want your course to be profitable. But Lucas says focusing on the money first can actually hurt you. It’s the same with your course as it is with your book–your first job is to serve your clients. Decide what your students need to be able to do after taking your course, and make everything in your course support that transformation.

“Success is people enjoy the course, they consume it, they share it with other people. The financial benefits of that is a byproduct of that experience.”

Hopefully, with your book, you identified your ideal reader. That person now becomes your ideal student. If you’re a coach or a consultant, you have a built-in audience. Your course takes a place in your product pyramid along with your book and your other products and services. Everything, at every level of that pyramid, serves your client. everything is about helping them get that transformation they’re after.

As your students succeed, so will you.


Lucas Marino, D.Eng, PMP, is an author and entrepreneur. He is the founder of Marino Training, EAST Partnership, and co-founder of the Empire Builder’s Masterclass. Lucas helps entrepreneurs and authors launch and sustain online training products. He is a Thinkific Expert, host of the Conversations for Course Creators podcast, and author of MONETIZE YOUR BOOK WITH A COURSE. A military engineer by experience, he spent 21-years as a naval engineer and training manager in the United States Coast Guard.

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