9 Best Email Ideas to Promote Your Online Courses

Have you created an online course? Looking for promoting ideas?

Start considering email marketing. Although it sounds like a boomer marketing medium, the statistics say otherwise. According to statistics, 77% of marketers have seen a significant rise in customer engagement in the past year.

Using email to promote your online course will be not only the perfect product launch option but also the best way to increase engagement with your future students. 

This article includes 9 ideas on how to promote online courses using email. Read until the end to ace email marketing. 

I. Segmenting Your Audience for Better Targeting

Segmentation in marketing is nothing but categorizing your audience/prospects into various categories depending on their needs and interests. 

This tactic helps you to create different email campaigns for better targeting. The most popular segmentation strategy is segmenting on the basis of demographics: 

  • Age group
  • Income 
  • Education
  • Social background 

Ethnicity and religion might not be relevant when selling online courses. Instead, the level of education and income group is the most important segmenting strategy for you.

If your audience base is from all around the globe, don’t forget to segment your email list accordingly. 

In case you have existing students, you can segment your target customer base on the basis of engagement and other metrics. 

II. Crafting Attention-Grabbing Subject Lines

The primary step to a successful email marketing campaign is the subject line. The one line with only a handful of words will decide the fate of your email. 

According to statistics, more than 69% of recipients report an email just after reading the subject line without opening it at all. 

This is why it’s crucial to craft catchy subject lines for cold emails.

Tips to Craft the Best Subject Line

Here’s a list of things that you must keep in mind while writing a subject sentence. 

  • Make it as short as possible
  • Don’t use spammy words, such as money, dollars, 100% guarantee, etc.
  • Try to intrigue the recipient 
  • Personalize it using relevant information
  • Make it informative

Subject Line Examples


In case you are confused which subject line to choose, try A/B testing using a cold emailing tool like Smartlead. 

III. Writing Persuasive Email Copy

So, you have written an impressive subject line. Now, what?

Now, it’s time to focus on the email body. The subject line will drive the audience towards the email body, and now it’s the content that will convince them to take action.

An email copy must be persuasive enough without being sales-y to push the recipient toward CTA. 

Tips for Crafting Compelling Email Copy

Here are some tips to craft the best email copy to sell online courses.

  • Keep the email body within 60 to 80 words
  • Use an intriguing opening line
  • Always keep the body text-based
  • Try to create urgency
  • Create a sense of scarcity
  • Provide social proof
  • Don’t use more than 1 link
  • Don’t use spammy words
  • Don’t add unnecessary sentences
  • Don’t pressurize/guilt-trip the recipient to take action

Email Copy Samples

Creating email copies is undoubtedly a very challenging job. You can either use ChatGPT to create one or simply pick one from the templates below. 


IV. Highlighting the Benefits of Your Online Course

The first email message that you will send to your potential student is a cold email. And, it’s more likely that you will get no response. 

Keep following up after healthy intervals to convert the potential customer into a loyal one. It will take minimum 5 to 10 follow-ups to make them click on the CTA. 

Be patient and keep following up. 

But, how? What to write in follow up emails?

After sending the first email, gradually make a shift in the email content. Try to emphasize the benefits of your course. 

In the follow-up emails, talk about how your course has benefitted other people. If possible, take names of industry experts/professionals who have taken your course and given positive feedback. 

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V. Creating Engaging Email Content

Engagement metrics are the lifeline of email marketing campaigns. If you manage to engage actively, even with a small number of people, it means you have created your audience base. 

When it comes to hooking people via emails, storytelling plays a huge role. You need to talk about your journey, how you learned the skills that you are selling, and how certain students found your course life-changing. 

Besides storytelling, you can add the below things to increase interactivity with the prospects. 

  • Polls
  • Surveys
  • Games
  • Videos

The goal is to provide something for them to act upon—and it’s not buying your product. Customer engagement goes on even after the student has bought your course. 

VI. Offering Discounts and Incentives

Did you know about 93% of shoppers use coupon/discount codes every year?

It means anybody who’s buying a product/service/course is hoping for a coupon or discount. So, if you haven’t tried this tactic yet, it’s time that you do. 

Check out the below email example.


Types of Discounts and Incentives You Can Offer

There are many ways marketers offer incentives and discounts in email marketing. Here’s a list of those that are suitable for selling online courses:

  • Percentage selling
  • Early payment discount
  • Additional material on early payment
  • Seasonal discounts like Easter discounts, Christmas discounts, etc.
  • Referral discounts

VII. Leveraging Social Proof in Your Emails

You might have created the best course in Udemy, but how do the prospects know? You might claim that the course is great, but why should the prospects believe you?  

This is where social proof plays a very important role. In any kind of business, social proofs are vital to a successful campaign. 

How to provide social proof?

  1. Testimonials of existing students
  2. Paying influencers to provide a testimonial

If you already have an audience base, then great! Ask any one of them to create a video testimonial speaking about the benefits of taking the course. 

In case you are selling a new course, try influencer marketing. For instance, if you are selling a marketing course, ask a popular marketer on LinkedIn to talk about your course. 

Later, when you are sending cold emails to sell the online course, attach the testimonial to convince the recipients. 

VIII. Using Video in Your Emails

Did you know click-through rates show 300% increase if the email has a video?

With the advent of TikTok and Insta reels, we all know the magical relationship between customers’ attention and video content. But, only a few marketing professionals are aware of the importance of videos in email campaigns. 

In one sentence, a good, value-adding, relevant video can skyrocket your sales. 

All you need to do is cut the most interesting clips from your course using a video editing app and use them in the emails. Sometimes, you should have video testimonials as well.

Either way, videos can do wonders. So, keep this point in mind while selling your course via email. 

IX. Nurturing Your Email List

Email marketing is a great medium to sell online courses, but it takes some time. Unlike selling products, selling a course needs nurturing your email list. 

Nurturing an email list is all about developing a trustworthy, long-lasting relationship between you and your audience. It does take time, but once you nurture the list, there’s no looking back. 

The best method of nurturing an email list is running newsletters or sending them regular emails. The email content should revolve around the skill you are selling in the course. It also helps if the emails include activities for the audience.


As I have said before, email marketing is a fruitful option for selling online courses. I have successfully created an audience by selling my Udemy course via emails; you can too. 

Just keep the email ideas in mind, and you are good to get started. Don’t forget to create a lead list of your own. Get in touch with us today for further support regarding your online courses.

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