It’s hardly an exaggeration to say that creating an online course is easier than ever. Thanks to the introduction of new course platforms and user-friendly technologies, you can create a brand-new online course in less time than it takes to go through your email inbox. Okay, that’s a stretch.
Even yet, with a little know-how and the right assistance, creating an online course may be a feasible objective.
We can talk from personal experience. We’ve been there and done it before.
We made it big on Instagram a few years back when we bootstrapped a fresh profile from zero to 2.3 million followers. Our Instagram Domination course, which we created to show everyone how we accomplished it, was a big success. Since then, we’ve created a number of other courses, all of which have proven to be quite beneficial to our company.
We’re now sharing what we’ve learnt over our careers as course creators. This tutorial will walk you through the advantages of establishing an online course, the steps to get started, and useful tools and resources to help you get started.
Let’s get started.
Why Create an Online Course?
It’s critical to understand why you’re working so hard on your
Yes, according to our study and experience.
Education is undergoing radical changes right now. Although you may associate learning with a large lecture hall, chalkboards, or even children’s television such as Sesame Street and Mister Rogers, education is changing to online learning.
Global Sector Analysts estimates that the online education industry will expand from $107 billion in 2015 to $370 billion in 2026.
Online courses have already surpassed traditional schooling in every way before the COVID-19 epidemic. People are looking for online courses as a feasible alternative to traditional schooling. Even institutions and schools throughout the world are beginning to provide more online learning opportunities.
The future of education is on your desktop or mobile device, which you currently spend the majority of your day on. Online courses are, without a doubt, popular right now. And, based on its course, you’re not too late—you’re perfectly on schedule to catch the wave.
How to Create an Online Course
1. Identify the Opportunity
Launching an online class is similar to starting a business. You must first seek for the appropriate opportunity. And where do you look for the ideal opportunity? By identifying and characterizing the issue.
Identifying exactly what outcome your audience is seeking for—what problem are they attempting to solve—is crucial to producing a successful online course. Do they want to study Python to become a developer and progress their profession, or do they want to learn the most up-to-date SEO marketing strategies to increase organic traffic to their website?
Power comes from knowledge. People desire to use that capacity to learn something new and alter themselves. The purpose of your online course is to assist people in their change.
Finding the problem that your audience needs to address, on the other hand, is easier said than done. It will take some effort and investigation, but you must locate the appropriate moment before rushing out to develop something that you think would be useful to someone.
Our Instagram Domination course’s concept was swiftly verified by our community. We created a brief blog post to illustrate our progress after witnessing initial success building our account on the site.
That particular post went viral.
The article was widely circulated, and we began receiving hundreds of emails every day requesting us to elaborate. Everyone wanted to imitate the success we had achieved, so Nathan (our founder and CEO) was asked if he would undertake one-on-one sessions with them.
How to Identify Opportunities
Here are a few ways to spot opportunities:
- Send a survey: If you have an email list, send a survey to your subscribers to see what they’re struggling with or what they’d like to learn.
- Ask your social followers: Throw up a post or survey on your social media channels to see what your followers want or need.
- Visit Quora: Use forum sites like Quora, Reddit, and Stack Overflow to see what your audience is talking about. Is there a question that’s getting a lot of attention? Do you notice any themes or trends around questions? Are there any specific questions that people keep asking?
We learnt from their queries that individuals desired more than simply followers. They wanted to learn how to monetise their accounts, grow their followings, and utilize Instagram to promote their businesses. Everything we were already doing and everything we could teach in a private online course.
2. Validate Your Course Idea
It’s time to put your magnificent course concept to the test. Do a comprehensive smoke test before moving on to the next phase and planning and developing your course.
While you may have a fantastic idea, it does not guarantee that it will be translated into a fantastic course. You don’t want to waste hours of your time and effort creating something that no one wants.
Keep in mind that you’re seeking for paying clients. Consider the number of unread books on people’s desks and yearly gym subscriptions that are never utilized. Those aren’t the types of skeptics you want supporting your concept.
It’s tough to validate a concept when people are “interested,” but it’s simple to collect evidence when consumers are forced to participate.
Bring Out the Smoke Test
When you start selling your online course before it’s finished, this is known as a smoke test. This is done by creating a landing page and pushing visitors to there to check whether anyone clicks the huge “purchase now” button.
Find your possible pupils on the internet and check if they’ll enroll in your course. Send out an email blast, leave a forum remark, and share your landing page on social media.
The entire process should take no more than a few days—a few hours to build up a landing page and two or three days to get it out there. All that’s left to do now is double-check the data.
The number of visitors that clicked through and attempted to purchase your online course is what you’re searching for. Set a click-through rate goal for yourself. Congratulations on successfully validating your concept if your smoke test achieves or surpasses the desired rate. It’s time to go back if it hasn’t already.
3. Outline Your Course
The most difficult aspect of developing an online course is drafting an outline. This is where you will determine what information you will share (and what information you will not disclose) with your audience.
The internet is a vast universe of queries and responses. Unless you’re teaching something truly groundbreaking, your information is likely to exist in some form or another on the internet. People, on the other hand, are not necessarily paying for knowledge; they are paying to be transformed.
The value of your course lies in its capacity to take people from point A to point B—from where they are now to where they want to be.
Repurposing your existing content is the simplest approach to create a fantastic course plan. Attempting to produce completely fresh content from scratch can be a huge waste of time, and the effort may not be worth it.
Examine your previously published blog entries, articles, social media postings, manuals, whitepapers, and webinars. Make your best-performing content consumable in the form of an online course.
But don’t get too far into the weeds just yet. This is the outlining stage, remember. Gather the bare bones of your course’s framework and organize it in the most easily digestible style.
Divide your material into sections or modules. Your student has successfully learnt a new skill or feature of your topic after completing a module.
Your course structure should be created to enable your students advance in a natural way. They should grasp the fundamentals of how to go from novice to expert.
4. Build Your Online Course
It’s time to go to work on the course once you’ve filled in the holes in your plan. You may make your course visual, audio, or text (or a combination of all three)—just make sure it makes sense for your target audience.
Prepare the material and practice your delivery. Keep your audience involved by using interactive components such as quizzes, tasks, and to-do lists.
Along the process, test your material on friends and coworkers to make sure you’re on the correct track. You don’t want this to end out like biology class in high school.
5. Find Your First Batch of Students
When it comes to testing, you’ll want to identify your initial group of pupils as soon as feasible. This beta test group will try out your course and provide you with honest feedback so you may make any necessary changes before releasing it to the broader public.
Your initial group of students will serve as case studies, success stories, and brand ambassadors in the future. You’ll figure out what works and what doesn’t with your course through them, and they’ll give you crucial advice on how to proceed.
Any well-designed course should be geared to assisting students in their personal change. They can get knowledge for free somewhere else—they’re paying you to get them from point A to point B.
To stress-test your course, just provide it to your first-time students for free and let them one-on-one engagement with the teacher. You may, for example, publish courses and then hold a Q&A session to delve further and identify difficulty spots. Great if you addressed them in the course. If you didn’t, you’ll probably need to modify and update the course before it goes live.
6. Launch Your Online Course
It’s time to go live! But first, you must do your homework in order to set yourself up for success.
If your online course isn’t easy to discover, it won’t help you (or your students). A solid marketing strategy is required for any successful course.
Prepare your promotional content for launch day and beyond in preparation. Here’s an example of what it may look like:
- Blog post announcement
- Email blasts
- Social posts
- Digital advertisements
- Podcast interviews
- YouTube promotions
- Influencer marketing
- Affiliate programs
The list could go on and on.
Your acceptance and acceleration will be mainly determined by the initial launch period, as it is with most goods. If you do this right, you’ll be on your way to long-term success.
7. Build Your Community
Your course’s launch is only the beginning of your students’ transformation. Now is the moment to guide them on their trip.
Hosting Q&As, replying to assignments, addressing emails, and connecting with your students are all examples of this. It also entails returning to your course material on a regular basis to update and modify obsolete lessons as well as add new relevant content.
If your course is no longer relevant, it is one of the simplest ways to become obsolete. A three-year-old Instagram course won’t educate you about the most recent updates—it has to be updated periodically to stay current.
Another issue you’ll have to deal with is course completion. Course completion rates for online courses are abysmal across the board, with some as low as 4%. Some of our courses have had turnover rates as high as 60%, but finding the perfect recipe to decrease churn isn’t easy.
Keep Students Engaged
Most instructors overlook the fact that online learning is nearly fully self-contained when building a course. It’s not like school, when a teacher or parent continuously reminds you to complete your work.
The important thing is to keep your pupil engaged throughout the process.
You accomplish this by ensuring that your pupils get tangible achievements, no matter how modest. They must witness the transformation for themselves, or they will abandon the cause.
“When am I ever going to utilize imaginary numbers?” the youngster in math class questioned the teacher. That kid was undoubtedly done with math—possibly forever—if the teacher didn’t have a good response to back it up.
Worksheets, action items, and other tools and resources to keep your pupils interested. Give them something to do with the knowledge instead of just giving it to them. Here’s what we include at the conclusion of each class, for example.