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Episode 104: How To Create Foodie Courses With Jason Logsdon

Blog Title: Amazing Food Made Easy

Social Media:

Amazing Food Made Easy on Facebook

About: Jason Logsdon is a best selling author, public speaker and passionate home cook who loves to try new things, exploring everything from sous vide and whipping siphons to blow torches, foams, spheres and infusions. He has published 14 cookbooks which have sold more than 50,000 copies. He runs AmazingFoodMadeEasy.com, one of the largest sous vide and modernist cooking websites, Makin’ Bacon, a website dedicated to helping bloggers succeed, and is the president of the International Sous Vide Association. He has been blogging for over a decade and making his living full time as a blogger for the last 6 years.

Notes from Episode #104:

  • Fun Fact: Jason loves to do improv in NYC. It came about when he took speech classes in advance of speaking at a venue he was nervous to share at. Improv gave him the confidence and the ability to share his content well and also opened a door to something he fell in love doing that he might not have stumbled on otherwise.
  • Creating cooking courses
    • In anything you want to do for your business, it’s a good strategy to start small and simple then work your way up to bigger things.
    • Creating and offering cooking courses fall in line with what we do as food bloggers already.
    • Figuring out what to offer your audience in a cooking course is much like finding a physical problem you need to offer an answer to a question your audience asks.
    • If you don’t know what to offer, listen to your audience. They will answer the question with what they say and what they ask you.
    • This is important for your content planning overall – listen to your audience!
    • You can teach in person, you can make video courses and you can send content via email, etc. 
  • What do you do once you have a tutorial?
    • Keep it simple.
    • Create an article. How did you audience react to the article. Did you get a good reaction? Does your audience want more? If they do, then expand on that and create video or turn it into a longer series. Build on that when you have success.
    • You can have a lot of great ideas and spend a lot of time and money that no one cares about. 
    • You’ll be successful when you put the least amount of work that you can do to get something valuable out there and then grow once you get a reaction. (proof of concept)
  • Take what you have, what you offer that’s wanted and then package it in a way that someone would want to buy or is specific to a problem that a reader has. 
    • Think through the recipes and how you can group them so they answer a specific problem someone wants to take advantage of. If you have a lot of comfort food, look to see how you group them into categories and spruce them up – upscale comfort food, healthy comfort food, etc
  • How to get started:
    • Comb through your own website’s popular pages. Once you find 3-5, come up with a lead magnet related to those pages. 
    • Make a 1 page guide for each popular page you’ve identified.
    • Package it in an interesting way. Publish it to your top pages and see which lead magnet is driving more traffic, then turn that into a course. 
  • You can take a recipe from your site, turn it into a series of emails going through how to cook and prepare this type of meal. 
    • This helps you find new audience members
    • It helps to grow your email list.
  • When most people picture Cooking Courses, they picture Gordon Ramsey. But this is not who you are competing with! 
    • An email course is valuable to your audience because they don’t want MasterChef style cooking for their daily meals. They want to be taught useful, simple approaches to getting their families fed. 
    • You can provide massive value to your fans when you drill down to what’s needed and wanted. . 
  • If you find something that works well, what’s next?
    • It’s good to first fill out the entire spectrum of that topic.
    • Jason has a webpage about a product, a lead magnet related to the product, and a product you can buy too. 
    • Some of your audience will want an overview of a topic, some will want to dive in a little more and then will desire a deep dive and are willing to pay money for your expertise. 
  • Formats to deliver your topic
    • Doing several videos in general provides more value than one 30 min video for the same amount of content. 
    • Creating 5-6 minute videos are easily sent out individually. It gives you more content to expound on. People will sit through them and use what you taught into practice better. These short videos or articles are digestible for your audience and they can even hop around so they can pick and choose what they are interested in.
  • Delivery 
    • Articles are a great way to put something out there on your site.
    • Email set up with an auto responder/mailing series for people to sign up for.
    • Paid courses – Teachable is a good program you can use to sell your course. 
      • Then step back and look at a smaller journey for your audience that you can create from that big course. Take that smaller chunk of content, that’s simpler and put that in an email as a lead magnet. Use this as a way to then lead people to the big course. 
    • Remember that you are trying to build fans for your site so give them value, don’t just sell to them in every email you send out. Give them some freebies, solve a problem for them genuinely, then offer the course at the end. 
    • You can release videos from within your course to give a teaser to what you are selling. You can create articles around the videos so people are drawn in with the information. 
    • If you are new to cooking courses and this avenue of communicating to your audience, then it makes sense to release videos as teasers. This allows your audience to get comfortable with you in this line of teaching. They are used to reading your blog. Now they are seeing you want to sell them a video so introduce the idea. You want them drawn in for more information so they end up buying your course. 
  • Pricing
    • This is hard to figure out. 
    • Research and split A/B testing can help you to narrow down pricing. 
    • Jason doesn’t enjoy figuring out the price point of his courses. He tries to find a range his audience is willing to pay and will adjust in big increments until he is successful.
    • What are you trying to accomplish? This can help you decide how to price.
      • Is your goal to reach the elite of your audience who will buy something really big and you only want a few big players?
      • If you’re just getting into courses in general, then you want to get as many people as possible to buy and keep the price as low as you can without being cheap so you avoid sending the wrong signal. 
  • Some of Jason’s courses are $50 and then he’ll drop the price to $20-25.
  • Discounts – 
    • Jason offers launch discounts. 
    • He doesn’t like coupons because he doesn’t want his audience to wait around for a coupon.
    • He might try a Facebook ad.
    • Those who do a quick start course on a topic will be offered a better price for a second or more involved course because they bought something from Jason already. 
  • In person courses
    • Can be very valuable
    • People can ask more questions and interact with you more than they do online. 
    • You see people and what they struggle with and what other content you can provide to help solve those issues.
  • Virtual courses
    • People are more comfortable with virtual courses now more than ever. If you aren’t using fancy equipment or techniques that need to be seen in person, you can offer great options virtually. 
    • Offer an ingredient list and equipment list to your attendees in advance. Then get online with a zoom call and you can still interact live but you don’t have to gather together. 
    • Food blogging can be a lonely pursuit so this offers connection with your audience. You’re working with people and seeing their faces and hearing what they like and what they do. It’s socially rewarding. 
  • Food bloggers are intimidated by offering content in course. But you are smart, you are capable. Before you became a food blogger, you didn’t know anything about SEO, how to set up HTML, photography, how to use social media well and other topics. But you learned over time. Believe in yourself, and move forward.

Helpful references from the episode:

Amazing Food Made Easy

Makin’ Bacon

Makin’ Bacon on YouTube

Makin’ Bacon Podcast Episodes

Free Sous Vide Quick Start

Paid Sous Vide Made Easy

Sous Vide Ruler:

• Guide: http://www.amazingfoodmadeeasy.com/info/modernist-cooking-blog/more/sous-vide-cooking-times-by-thickness


•Downloadable: https://www.amazingfoodmadeeasy.com/info/exploring-sous-vide-email-course/more/cooking-sous-vide-thickness-ruler

• Plastic: https://www.amazingfoodmadeeasy.com/pages/sous-vide-timing-ruler

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