If you've ever considered starting an online business or expanding your business offerings, you may have wondered about creating an online course.
And if you've looked into creating a course, no doubt you've heard about or come across Amy Porterfield.
For good reason, Amy Porterfield is the QUEEN of online courses and runs Digital Course Academy (DCA), one of the biggest online programs for creating online courses and digital businesses.
If you're wanting to find more info about Digital Course Academy to help you decide whether DCA is worth the cost, you've found the right place.
I'm a 2019 DCA alumni student and will share the good, the bad, and whether I think it's worth it.
Just a heads up
I'm a big proponent of transparency and honesty in business - so this is a 100% honest review (I'd never do anything else). And if you're thinking about DCA and want to talk to someone who has gone through the experience to get some advice about whether it's for you - I'm happy to chat on a zoom, please email sue at theunicornadvisory dot com and we can make time :)
Read more about this in my affiliate disclaimer.
I only share products and services I use and love and would recommend affiliate program or not. Any affiliate links will be noted with *
Alright! There is a lot to cover, this is a detailed review, so let's get stuck in!
If you're in any way vaguely interested in online business or creating a course so you can bring in passive income or move away from client work to an alternate way of making money, there is a pretty high chance you've heard about Amy Porterfield and Digital Course Academy.
Probably because Amy Porterfield is a freakin marketing genius!
She sure knows how to market a course and makes sure as many people as possible know about DCA.
Which is a good indication about why she is such a great person to learn from.
Amy practices what she preaches and executes everything like a consummate pro. I've been really paying attention to how she has been marketing not just right now, with the launch of DCA 2020 coming up, but for the last 3 months!
The long pre-launch runway she recommends, the regular content related to her course, it's all there in action.
Is there a lot of DCA hype? Yes!
Is that a good thing? 100%!
Seeing the evidence of her doing what she teaches, just reinforces to me why I am so glad I chose to invest in DCA last year - I'm still learning now and watching this year's launch take place and everything she is doing, with that insider info she teaches in DCA, is like taking the learnings to a whole new level.
If anything, the only negative is seeing how much work Amy and her team put into the launch, can leave you feeling like you need to do that as well in the beginning, when that kind of work needs a full team behind you (I think Amy is up to 12 full-time staff).
It is super inspiring to see what's possible (especially when you time travel on Amy Porterfield's youtube channel to 2009 - things weren't always this polished and prolific!)
One of the best parts of the DCA launch is the amazing amount of content Amy creates to help you learn the basics of creating an online course.
Even if you're not yet ready to invest in DCA, make the most of the incredible pre-launch content, which is as good as a lot of paid stuff out there in the marketplace.
Everything from the Facebook Bootcamp, the free quiz which helps you work out which type of online course you should create, the Course Creator Starter Kit, the detailed and incredibly helpful podcast episodes to the free masterclasses Amy holds during September.
I adore watching Amy in her masterclasses, she is beyond brilliant and I always feel so proud that she is not just my mentor, but that she shares all her masterclass/webinar secrets in DCA, so one day, I will be as amazing as her at webinars #goals!
This free content is epic and you should 100% make the most of it!
I'll be sharing details of all of these free resources as they get released, via email, as I found them incredibly helpful, so jump on the Unicorn Advisory email list for updates so you don't miss out on this free help.
I was one of those people who got in just at the last minute (literally 5 minutes before closing) so I missed out on getting some of the early bonuses that were offered.
In hindsight, I wish I had done some research and worked out if I wanted to enrol before the registration was open, so I could have taken advantage of getting those first-day extras.
I actually didn't think I was going to sign up for DCA as I arrogantly thought I already knew enough (and had a course partly produced). Being a marketer and having 20 years of business experience, I thought I wasn't going to learn enough for it to be worth it. I was determined to be a DIY hero - much to my own detriment (thank goodness I got over myself!)
However, despite missing the early bonuses, it was without a doubt worth it and I am SO glad told my ego to get outta here and enrolled. Business + marketing experience is only part of the picture of what you need to be successful in this industry. Building and marketing an online course is a whole different world to general marketing!
The DCA course itself was in-depth and packed with resources
There are 8 modules, the first four around creating an epic course, the second four modules focused around promoting the course - mainly using webinars as a tool with bonus training on Facebook Ads.
Module 1: Planning Your Digital Course Launch
Module 2: Validating Your Course Idea
Module 3: The Art of Outlining Your Course
Module 4: Recording Your Course Content
Module 5: Creating Your Profitable Webinar Presentation
Module 6: The Webinar Fill-up Framework
Module 7: How to Increase Your Webinar Sales
Module 8: Live Webinar Success Secrets
I also got access to the bonus of creating a workshop, which was helpful on its own - but to be honest, distracted me from DCA and if I could do-over, I would have done that workshop training after DCA.
The workshop bonus was to help people create and sell a workshop to bring some money in, but I noticed a lot of people spent a lot of time creating and promoting their workshop and only made a few hundred dollars from it. (That was my experience too - I made $450 from putting on workshop which was nice - but probably not the best use of my time - I may have had more success when my list was bigger).
There was also a bonus to teach how to turn your course evergreen, which I loved. I believe in 2020, there is also a fast-action bonus about list building which is awesome, as it is greatly needed when you first start.
Each new module was released weekly, with several implementation weeks with no new content released, just time to catch up and do the work (the weekly Q&A's with Amy and the FB group was still very active during those implementation weeks).
I must say, when I first joined DCA, I was really disappointed that all the content wasn't released straight away.
I was keen to get through everything quickly, as I wanted to get my course up and selling ASAP. Despite DCA starting in the middle of September, I was planning on launching in early October as I already had a course.
I soon realised that the drip released content was actually really helpful, as it forces you to slow down and go through things thoroughly, not just whip through it and not implement. I tend to rush through things and this forced me to pay better attention so I'm grateful for it.
The thing as well with the content being released module by module, is that everyone is going through it at the same time, so the posts in the FB group are relevant and helpful to what you're studying, rather than random, which was good.
Amy also does a Q&A every day Monday-Thursday each week for the full 12 weeks of the program and tries to keep most of the questions related to that week's content, l loved these.
Speaking of support! It is there 100% from Amy and her team. Going through DCA is an experience in itself - just to see how well a course can be delivered. Total #coursegoals!
Those Q&A sessions are super valuable - I had a few questions answered and they are fully searchable as well, so you can check past Q&A's to see if anyone has asked the same thing you want to know so you don't have to wait for an answer.
The live Q&A was one of my favourite parts of DCA and Amy really gives her all.
Amy does these as FB lives in the DCA Facebook Group. I love that you can search through all the live sessions to get answers - as there are a LOT of sessions and it can be hard to make them every day, 4 times a week for 12 weeks is a lot. The lives are kept in the FB group (which is archived after the 12 weeks is up - so you can watch, but not comment) AND they are added to the course area in Kajabi, so you can watch them any time in the future (and well after the 12 weeks is done).
The Facebook group is actually something I got FAR more value out of than I ever would have realised.
I didn't even really use FB before DCA and I decided if I was going to invest in DCA that I would make the most of all the resources - the FB group being one of them.
At first, I was like meh - a FB group is just another random bonus, but it was epic.
Not only was it incredibly helpful to get feedback on my own course and sales pages (even if it was a little hard to hear at the time) being surrounded by so many clever and inspiring people changed everything for me.
Every day people shared their wins, their highs, and lows and there is just something about going through an experience with thousands of people together!
And as an added bonus, I've made lots of great friends through DCA, both locally and internationally from that FB group.
Sometimes the group could be a little overwhelming with so many people, which is why one of my DCA besties, Yvette Mayer and I, will be running our own DCA support group this year for anyone who signs up to DCA through our affiliate link. That way you will never have to worry about your posts getting lost in the bigger group, it will be a much more intimate and personal experience with us. Click here to get more details about that.
The group does get archived after 12 weeks, at which stage you can move into Amy's alumni group for past paid students - Insiders, or go deeper with her and join the momentum monthly membership. I'm in the Insiders group, but not momentum.
One of the great things about DCA is the bonuses! Of which there are always many.
In DCA 2019 there were bonuses of the Workshop training, also how to turn your course Evergreen, and if you got in quick, there was a launch debrief AND a guide to getting a VA to help you get your course business rolling. The 2020 DCA bonuses have not yet been released, but I will update this post when they are up!
Did you know, that if you're smart about how you sign up, you can get EXTRA bonuses!
If you sign up for DCA through an affiliate, not only will you get the entire DCA experience and Amy's bonuses - you can also get additional bonuses through affiliate partners.
I've decided to become an affiliate for DCA this year, because of how much I loved the program and how much it has positively impacted my life.
I really wonder how different things would be if I hadn't made that last-minute decision to join DCA last year.
Since then, I've created a course, 2 memberships, done some incredibly valuable research with my ideal customers I hadn't gone in-depth enough with before and now support others who are using Kajabi for their platform. That is something I started doing for fun for my DCA friends and it has evolved into an amazing business!
I get to do what I freakin love for my work and DCA was the catalyst for that for sure!
Because I know how much it has helped me - I gladly share the love and want to help you potentially get the amazing, life-changing experience I had.
So to help you make the most of Digital Course Academy, I have crafted an AWESOME bonus pack, in collaboration with one of my DCA Besties Yvette Mayer, from Lit Up and Liberated. If you decide to sign up to DCA through our link. You'll get not one, but THREE coaches helping you over 12 weeks, covering you for the tech AND mindset. How awesome is that!!
Click here to get all the info about the EXTRA goodies you can get worth $1997 (for FREE) You'll get a stunning designer Kajabi page and product templates for free - the absolute pack, along with the 12 week coaching program and trello launch planner!
I think so, 100%! When I launched my course the first time, I had 2 students sign up.
Talk about depressing!
On the second launch (pre-DCA training), I welcomed 3 more.
Which was lovely, but not exactly change your life earth-shattering!
I was ready for more!
So after my second lackluster launch, I decided to become a good student and follow everything in DCA to the letter (instead of thinking I knew better... ahem!) and you know what happened?
I created my first ever webinar - using Amy's framework and loved it!
It's such a buzz selling on a webinar and knowing that you're having a positive impact on people regardless!
The first one was so scary, I thought I was going to have a heart attack! But knowing that I had literally everything I needed on hand - from the emails to the webinar framework to the lessons from Queen Amy made it possible.
Everything I needed was there and it was so reassuring. The support from Amy's community was brilliant too.
Without having her resources, I'm not sure I ever would have done a live webinar, especially not a good one!
Now I've done so many webinars I can just jump on and present without a fear in the world, knowing I have the proven outline and all the resources there. So valuable.
I made a course using Amy's framework and validation methods and sold it - with over 70 students enrolled 🙌✨
Despite everything 2020 threw at us, I still made it happen! I used all the DCA resources, all the training, templates, swipes, and help and was so very proud of myself! I got an entire program up and being sold in just two weeks!
And I've also grown a membership, currently with almost 60 members, after taking what I learned in DCA and implementing it along with doing Tribe.
Implementing, being the single most important thing 😉
Often if you buy a program and dabble around the edges and don't do the work and implement. And you then won't get great results and it can feel disappointing.
DCA is a big investment - especially when you're talking Aussie dollars
BUT if you commit to implementing, taking the lessons, and doing the work, it will be SO worth it!
If you get the amazing free bonuses from Yvette Mayer and myself as well, it's even better value.
Another reason I think DCA presents great value is lifetime access to the content AND all future updates.
Right now - the 2019 DCA material is being updated to the 2020 version.
The best part is - we got 4 months' notice, so we could go into the portal and download all the current content if we wanted to keep the old content and the new content.
I'm looking forward to the 2020 updates and going back through it all, to see what else I can learn. I've heard Amy is including beta launching - AKA selling your course before you create it so that you can learn as you go. I'm keen to hear how she recommends doing that
You don't get lifetime access to the DCA Facebook group, but you do get to join Insiders - the FB group for all Amy's alumni and it's a helpful and fun group.
So if you're considering joining the thousands of others in Digital Course Academy in 2020, I think you'll be making a great decision!
Don't forget if you enrol in DCA through my special link, you'll get an AMAZING bonus pack worth $1997 - templates, group coaching Aussie style with TWO awesome coaches, Kajabi templates and personalised reviews of your work. All that, in addition to the epicness of DCA and Amy Porterfield, will help you make progress so much faster.
And remember, if you want to chat to someone who has done DCA and get some more info about it and work out if it's right for you, please email me and we can set up a zoom so you can ask any questions or have a little backend tour of DCA.
Just to confirm, I am an affiliate of Amy Porterfield, but as someone who has a no-bullshit affiliate policy - you'll know I ONLY recommend products and programs that I would recommend whether there was an affiliate program or not. Doing DCA was such a positive step for my life and my business and I'm sharing the love (and additional bonuses) with you in the hope it will be epic for you as well!
PLUS a Unicorn Advisory partner bonus pack worth up to $500!