Article #5 – What Sets This Apart

28 September, 2022

I’ve received so many messages about how much you’ve gotten from this series, and how perfect the timing is for a program like this. Thank you for the enthusiasm 🙏

The October 2022 Keystone cohort kicks off soon, and we couldn’t be more excited.

If you’re just joining, you can catch up on any articles you’ve missed here.

Before I give you the chance to apply to the upcoming cohort of the Keystone Accelerator, I want to be CRYSTAL CLEAR about who this is for (and who it’s not for).

We don’t want this to be the biggest, most famous, or flashiest marketing program out there – we want to be the best for a very specific kind of person who we know we can launch right into the stratosphere like a rocket.

You will be learning a timeless model for how to be successful at marketing educational products and services online, with a focus on positioning and messaging that speak to people’s hearts and minds in a way they can’t ignore.

Here are the major elements that differentiate Keystone from anything else out there:

1. Education-first

2. Writing-driven

3. High integrity

4. Platform-agnostic

5. Premium

Let me explain what I mean by each of these.

#1. Education-first

Our marketing approach is to help the customer make the best decision for them. And to do so involves education. This one might seem obvious, but until now, online education hasn’t been run by educators. It’s been mostly online marketers deploying ads and optimizing sales funnels, with the actual learning a distant afterthought.

This has given “online courses” a bad reputation, as people have discovered that no one cares about the experience they have or the results they’re getting. But that negative reputation is our opportunity: we can be part of redeeming it into something beautiful and trustworthy.

Education also describes our approach to marketing. We don’t jam our marketing emails full of buzzwords and tripwires – each and every email is designed first and foremost to educate and inspire. Our guiding principle is that they should walk away having learned something even if they never buy anything from us.

#2. Writing-driven

As I explained in the first article, the Keystone Accelerator is all about marketing, and marketing is all about nailing your message.

Every aspect of what we’ll be teaching circles back around to investing in the messages you write to your audience.

It’s about the warmth and trust you have with your audience, the quality of the stories you tell, and the respectfulness of allowing people to come and go seamlessly if they’re not a good fit.

#3. High integrity

Again, I hate that I have to include this as a differentiator, but integrity is at the heart of everything we do. We don’t see our businesses as a way to make a quick buck. We’re not trying to get rich and make it out just as the house burns down around us.

I am an online educator for life, and Billy works with clients that are similarly in it for the long term.

This means that we take the time to master timeless marketing principles, and stay away from gimmicks and hacks – even if they work. It means we view our prospects as peers, and treat them with the respect they deserve. It means that we invest in long-term relationships with everyone we interact with, from students to collaborators to contractors to affiliate partners to advisors.

#4. Platform-agnostic

Billy’s Five Lightbulbs framework is platform-agnostic, meaning that Billy won’t teach you strategies that only work on YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, or the next flavor of the month.

We’ve been around long enough to know that if you hitch your wagon to any single platform, you’re asking for trouble. Eventually, these platforms will go out of business, be acquired, or simply switch their priorities on you (or you might change your priorities).

You must control your own destiny, which means owning the relationship with your customer – your email list, your brand, and your content.

#5. Premium

All of the above points add up to one outcome: the education product you’ll be working on will be a premium offering.

Premium means you command high prices, and people willingly pay them. It means you don’t try to be the best at what you do – you are the only one that does what you do. It means you don’t try to compete on price and features, but on value and benefits.

Creating a premium course or membership program isn’t a matter of simply adding a zero or two to your pricing. You need each and every one of the elements included to command that price, and then to overdeliver on it. This is how you create something that no one else can copy, and that gives you a sustainable, profitable business.

In my next email, I’ll share why now is the perfect time to double down on online education.

See you soon,


P.S. Billy and I will be hosting a Zoom session about Keystone on Thursday, October 6th at 10:30am PT. If you’re interested in joining Keystone, make sure to attend.

​Click here to register to join us on Zoom.

About the Author

Meet Billy Broas, the creator of The Five Lightbulbs

Billy got into marketing in 2010, when he left his career at an engineering company to start his own business on the internet.

Since then, Billy has been the marketing brains behind some of the top online entrepreneurs and course creators. His clients include David Perell, Tiago Forte, Kimberly Snyder, and Ryan Deiss.

An introverted intellectual, and definitely not a "natural marketer," Billy saw an opportunity to create a tool for anyone who wears a marketing hat. Read more about Billy's story here.