The idea of opening an “e-school” has been high on my list of to-do items for a while. I’ve always wanted to offer a platform that was affordable for users and informative when it came to marketing. We all know marketing can be a bit… time consuming, especially when you’re first starting out. So why haven’t I done it yet? Well, frankly, the time it takes to build a successful online course offering can be a bit intimidating, however I’m undergoing the challenge right now and wanted to help spread a little light on the process to hopefully make it a bit easier for you.
Step 1: Start Building Your Content
Here’s a quick exercise: Right now, jot down 20 ideas. These ideas can be different topics you want to discuss, fun activities you might offer, who your audience is, etc. Twenty may seem like a large number, but you might find that you end up getting in to a groove and go even further.
The biggest challenge I’ve found has been finding the time to actually sit down and start knocking out the content. It’s important to set aside time every day to jot down ideas, start writing the content, or just brainstorm with friends and family the information they may like if they were your student.
Step 2: Putting The Content Together
Once you have the content, the next thing to think about is how do you want to share this content? Will it be in the form of videos, quizzes, articles, etc.? Will you offer Live Phone Call sessions for your students? Will you offer any rewards or certificates for successfully completing your course?
This is the time where you should be fine tuning your course offerings. Putting the final touches on videos, going through a final review of written content, triple checking that quizzes are correct. One good idea here is to go through your course from start to finish – set it up how you envision and then knock it out. Take notes on how long it takes you to complete from start to finish. Another option is to have a friend or family member run through the course. You can even sit beside them as they run through the course and ask them to bounce feedback off of you.
Tip: Not sure how to create your own images to use in these online courses? Stock photos and videos often provide a quick and easy way to get your point across and look professional. Need vectors or stock photos to build your course content or even grow your business? Get 100 downloads for $49 now with Depositphotos.
Step 3: Build Your Online Courses
Content is now ready – fantastic! Next on the list is how to display this content? Where do we want to make this information accessible? What platforms should we use to share this content? There are tons of offerings out there, such as Udemy or Coursera, however these platforms require you to place your content on their site and they may take a hefty cut.
Another option is to host the courses on your own website, which you can build using a product called Invanto. This is the route we’re going.
Invanto is a very intriguing platform offering both a way to build a school as well as offer rewards for successfully completing courses, and right now over on AppSumo you can snag their entire suite for $49 (a lifetime deal).
Yes: AppSumo/Invanto/DepositPhotos are affiliate links, which means we receive a commission if you make a purchase using this link, however we are in LOVE with their offerings and have purchased the Invanto suite and DepositPhotos deal ourselves. We only share links we feel provide excellent value and have tested ourselves!
Step 4: Marketing For Your Online Courses
Now we have our school ready to go, it’s time to start advertising it! What ways should you advertise your course offerings?
- Social Media: Advertising to a relevant audience, making sure to target those interested in the information you’re offering.
- Cross Promote: Working with other bloggers is a great way to push your content further, and usually you can find this for free if you cross promote them on your website. It’s also a great way to have a reliable link out there for the long haul.
- Offer Affiliate Program: As students complete your course, you can offer an affiliate program if they share your offerings and provide you with new students. Word-of-mouth travels further than you may think.
- Provide Content For Free: Offering a free trial or a free video so they can see the quality of information they’ll be receiving is a great way to build your list and encourage users to want to keep going.
- Influencers: There are tons of opportunities out there for influencer marketing out there. This may not be our #1 suggested option, but I have heard users find this successful.
Let us know: How do you plan to advertise your course offerings?