As a teacher, you leave all your troubles behind when you enter a classroom. For those few hours, your only troubles are your students and their education. The classroom as a physical space has been held sacred by teachers for centuries. No wonder you won’t find ready takers for online teaching amongst traditional teachers.keep reading
Udemy Marketplace, blog, Build brand, E Learning, Fashion, Learning Experience, Learning Management System, Personal Branding, Training“But, where do I begin?”
When you begin something monumental, this is always the first question. That’s exactly what we plan to answer for online teachers who are new, as well as ones who are experienced and want to start a new course. So, hop on!
You might have heard varying opinions that have left you confused about which teaching platform to choose. The most popular choice seems to be a Udemy MarketPlace, a beneficial platform for students. Is it as beneficial for teachers, too? Figure this. There are individual courses on offer for as high as $1 billion and more on self-branded platforms such as Kajabi, Teachable, FreshLMS, Thinkific, etc. The opportunities beyond Udemy Marketplace are endless. Before picking your preferred platform, let’s start by breaking down what you need.
Questions you need to ask before selecting the platformIntrospection is the beginning of any good decision, so let’s try to dive deep into your personal requirements.
- What is my objective for becoming an online teacher?
- Do I see myself pursuing online teaching in the long run?
- If yes, then how important is my personal brand to me?
- Do I want my courses to sell purely on course content, or do I want my personal credibility to add to the course value?
- Do I want a high level of customization or would I prefer things templatized?
- Do I want to make my own personalized website, or just follow a template for the time being?
- How much time and dedication can I put into my new course?
- Do I want to create my own marketing strategy for the long term or leverage the hosting platform’s reach?
- Would I like my course design, structure, registration page, landing pages, payment mechanisms, etc. to all be customized?
Based on your answers, consider the following two options.
Online teaching marketplaces
Udemy is the Amazon of online courses. You are one of the thousands of sellers using Amazon’s brand and platform to sell your services.
If your answers for most of the questions above lean towards templates, Udemy, or a similar marketplace might be a good choice. With such a platform, you get these features:
- Your course content, pricing, and marketing are influenced by the marketplace’s policy. There is a structure in place which you ought to follow.
- You can leverage the reach of the marketplace and not work too much on your personal reach.
- Udemy offers lucrative quizzing tools, mobile interface, worksheets, etc.
Platforms such as FreshLMS are customization services that work like Shopify. They put you on the front foot and offer a chance to create your own digital store, price your course freely, have a personal connection with students via email and other platforms, cross-sell your other courses, and grow your brand on exactly the path you choose for it.
Some features that FreshLMS offers are:
- Heavy on-course personalization
- Ideal user journeys (fully customized)
- Prompt quizzes and assessments
- Custom domains for every course
- Effortless payment unification
- Smart third-party integrations (for marketing and reports)
- Completely Whitelabel and re-brandable operations
- Next-gen reporting and analytics (with insights about performance, cash flow, engagement metrics, detailed sales reports, etc.)
- Support for solopreneurs and organisations
We will now pit Udemy Marketplace against the option of your own website on five crucial parameters, and then you can figure out the rest for yourself. After all, we aren’t here to decide for you, but just to empower you with information.
Course content: Udemy vs your own website
If you choose Udemy, you have to upload your course into a preset interface. You can use video, audio, text, and add subtitles. This should make the process faster. However, Udemy also has a tedious approval system where you might get stuck with tiny details.
With your own website, you decide every single step of the user journey. You can embed videos from YouTube or other streaming platforms, as opposed to Udemy where you cannot link any other website including YouTube. With FreshLMS, you can even have a custom domain for each course.
Course design: Udemy vs your own website
On Udemy, there is just one design which all courses follow. Your course content is the only thing that will set it apart. This works for some students as taking one course familiarises them with the layout and makes taking subsequent courses easier.
However, as a creator— and we mean it in the most artistic sense, (teaching is, after all, an art and not just a service) — wouldn’t you love to give it a personal touch? You could turn the way your course looks, your logo, and your brand into additional selling factors. When FreshLMS says ‘Whitelabel and Rebrandable’, it means those words in every sense.
Pricing: Udemy Marketplace vs your own website
To give a fair picture of how pricing on Udemy works, let’s look at a testimonial of a former Udemy instructor from 2019.
“Students that bought my course at the full price of $199 from my website felt cheated once they saw that they could get the same course on Udemy for under $10 – and understandably so. This misstep cost me thousands of dollars, not to mention countless hours that I had to spend responding to refund requests. Once I stopped selling my courses on Udemy, my refund rates dropped dramatically.”
Your course can end up being valued much lesser on Udemy, without you having any control over it. Even if you aren’t bearing the difference, such valuation could hurt your brand in the long run. It is always more satisfying to create your own niche, be honest about your value, and earn what you deserve.
Sales and marketing: Udemy Marketplace vs your own website
On Udemy, you end up splitting half the fees you earn with the marketplace. Plus, you compete with a lot of other courses on the same subject, using the same interface. When Udemy marketplace your course with discounts, it is basically marketing itself more than you or your course.
Most of the platforms where you can make your own website have monthly and yearly subscription models, wherein you pay them once and then make unlimited courses for unlimited students within the timespan. You can use various options like PayPal, Stripe, etc. free of charge. You are also responsible for marketing your course and conducting the analysis. You have the freedom to link your website to tools such as MailChimp, Hubspot, Zapier, etc.
Customer support: Udemy vs your own website
Udemy has a huge list of FAQs, a ticketing system, as well as a chat option. However, you cannot directly call an expert. As a teacher, you are also not allowed to respond to or moderate comments. You can’t ask for more information regarding a customer’s complaint.
If you have your own website, you also have your own communication system. You can moderate comments, decide how you respond to complaints, and use email, call, chat, or any other means to resolve them. In a world full of consumers obsessed with ‘personalization’, what could be better than putting them directly in touch with you?
We’re not going to lie, Udemy is a good place to test your course material. But when it comes to sustaining in the online teaching world, you will have to put in a little more effort. +
The day Udemy changes a feature or policy, you will be powerless. You own neither the audience nor your own offering, effectively limiting growth. With your own website, you will have limitless power and control to design, change, and update constantly.
Your website is basically your own boutique classroom minus the school’s rules.
After all, it is always the teachers who shut textbooks and make their own rules who teach the best and remain in our minds forever.
Online Course, blog, Buildings, E Learning, Learning Experience, Learning Management System, Solopreneur, Training
Congratulations! Being here means you have cleared the first step, which is being sure of wanting to teach online. Great efforts are always preceded by a strong will. Now, wear your teaching hat and get ready to kick off the exciting journey of creating your first ever online course.
Before we go further on this path, let us indulge you in some trivia. Did you know that the global online teaching market is set to touch $350 Billion by 2025? This is, mind you, a pre-2020 projection. With the online learning market exploding due to the lockdown, the figure is only set to increase. In more ways than one, it is the best time to start teaching online.
So, whether you are a corporate employee who has finally found some free time to pursue the post-retirement desire of teaching or a dance instructor who misses guiding students in physical classes and shows — you’re at the right place. The world of online teaching is not nerve-racking but might seem a little intimidating because of the overload of courses and information this year. Don’t you worry, we’re here to tell you why it doesn’t have to be so. Let’s start at the very start.
The birth of your online course
There are two pillars for this stage, inspiration, and research. You’re not even thinking about course material yet, you’re just introspecting.
- Inspiration: Teaching is an art. You’ve seen it in your favourite teachers and professors from your school/college days. There was that one history teacher who could make the World War less scary and more fun to study, that one marketing professor who made it seem like selling hotcakes is everybody’s game. You’ve also seen it in that one colleague who makes PowerPoints look like a short film or that cousin who taught you how to play the guitar better than any formal teacher.
There is one thing common between all of these people — inspiration. They are all extremely motivated people whose passion is infectious. Now, ask yourself. What is your true passion? It could be anything from a dance form to organizing Excel sheets. You will find students for everything. It doesn’t have to be something popular or trending on LinkedIn. It’s better to carve your niche where you’re more confident and less influenced by others. This niche is where your passion and your skills converge.
- Research: After inspiration comes to research. This gives a method to your madness. Although you can create your own research methodology, here are a few steps you can begin with:
- Look for existing courses and materials in your field of choice.
- Read up to expand your knowledge and expertise.
- Take an online course yourself. Use Google Search, Quora, blogs, social media, and any other relevant online tool.
- Talk to interested people you know and find on online forums.
- Find out which aspect of your passion they are most interested to learn, and how they’d like to learn it.
By this stage, you are motivated enough to get into the details. Let’s begin by determining the type of your course, which will make further steps easier.
Types of online courses
You will find a lot more types than the ones listed here, but these are the only ones you need to know. The rest are only narrower categorizations of these. We believe that it would be better for you to not fall into meticulous structures and instead find your own space, build your own structure.
- Masterclass: Masterclasses are advanced-level courses. These aren’t usually meant for beginners. They’re for people already well-versed in the field who want to gain expertise. For this, you have to be an expert yourself. These courses are best suited for creative fields.
- Coaching: Coaching courses are where you, the coach, helps an interested beginner gain knowledge of a topic and learn the ropes. These include everything from business coaching, career coaching, personality development, to yoga coaching.
- MOOC: Massive Open Online Courses are meant for unlimited participation from across the world. These are easily repeatable, fixed syllabus courses that promote student communities. They’re good for fields such as STEM, business, humanities, and technology.
- Corporate Training: In fields such as hospitality, Human Resources, and administration, employee training is crucial. In the current situation, an online course is the best way to provide corporate training. Corporate training topics range from confidence-building to personality development and communication.
- Creative Courses: Gone are the days when you couldn’t turn your hobby into your profession. Creative courses are very unique in themselves, and each needs a different approach based on the nature of the art. A dance class would require both the teacher and the student to have a spacious room. A musical instrument would be a must for a music class. For visual arts, students might need physical material such as paints, or even software, depending on the course niche. Keep these specific requirements in mind while working on your creative course.
Roadmap for creating your first online course
Now that you have probably figured out the domain of teaching, let’s get to business. What you have now is a subject, a course category, your expertise, your subject research, and your audience research. That’s plenty of material to start working on your actual course material.
1. Pick a specific topic
Based on your research of the theme and the audience, find out what marketing professionals often call ‘pain points’. These are gaps in the market, areas that no one else has touched. For example, say you want to teach the violin. You find out that there is hardly anyone teaching it exclusively to senior citizens, who need a different pace and approach from children or youngsters. Tap the pain point and introduce a specific course for them.
2. Decide the end goal of your online course
What is it that your students will take away at the end of this course? Just like you must have done with research papers in college, determine your conclusion first. Then, build towards it. Express the end goal in a sentence. For example, ‘At the end of this online course, students will know how to read and write basic sentences in French, along with some cultural knowledge about France.”
3. Make your drawing board
You’re probably imagining a wall full of ambiguous post-its, pins, colours, flow-charts, and maps, like in the movies. That’s exactly what we’re suggesting. When we say make your drawing board, we mean to make one literally. Jot your ideas down in words, sketches, tables, etc. Use coloured pens and sticky notes. Put all of it down where you can see it simultaneously. At this point, every idea is a good idea. Put it down without thinking about whether it makes sense to anyone else or not.
4. Organize your board
Now comes the tough part. Take out ideas and elements that do not fit within the goal you had decided for your online course in Step 2. With the rest, make a class-wise plan. Then, set a mini-goal for each of these classes. For example, let’s assume that you’re conducting a baking course. Here’s how the course structure would pan out:
- Lecture One: Introduction to baking
Goals: Identifying baking tools, usage of a microwave, and basic practices
- Lecture Two: Types of cakes
Goal: Understanding the difference between the basic varieties
- Lecture Three: Making a basic cake
Goal: A small cake for two
- Lecture Four: Frosting and other decorations
Goal: Adding frosting and other personalized decorations to the cake made yesterday
Decide how much time each class would roughly take, including introduction, lessons,
5. Add activities and assignments
The most engaging, creative way to achieve the goal of each class is an activity. Divide your students into groups and give them something to work on. Promote conversations and discussions amongst themselves. After the class, give them assignments as well. Make sure not to make them too heavy. A good measure to keep in mind would be that it should be something they can finish within an hour. This keeps them involved without putting too much pressure on them.
6. Put your online course together
Now that you have a clear course outline, it’s time to make the actual course. There are numerous tools available for you, starting with the basic PowerPoint (which is actually not very basic, it has unbelievable features that you could very well need a whole online course to learn), to sophisticated tools such as Photoshop. Use a combination of tools that suit you best. This is your time to make the fun presentation you can never submit to your boss.
7. Conduct a crash test
Now, you have your course. Do you immediately launch it? Of course not. It’s your first course. You need to test it. Hold a free webinar or lecture on the same topic, and carefully note down the response and feedback you receive. The webinar will also serve as a marketing tactic for your upcoming course. You can even hold a demo class with friends and relatives and take their feedback. Remember that any criticism you receive is only a chance for you to improve.
8. Add finishing touches
Based on the feedback you receive, make alterations to the course. Review each part including the assignments. After your crash test, you might realize that school students get easily distracted while reading a book without pictures, or that teenagers want to be treated as adults and would like more challenging assignments. Derive these key insights and refine your course. Even if you realize that you have to go back to the drawing board, do it. It’s okay if your course is delayed, but not if it’s short-sighted.
9. Choose the right platform
Now that the final draft of your course is ready, you need to pick a platform to run the course on. There are a plethora of platforms online, and you might get confused because each offers some advantages. It would be best to simply pick the one that lets you do what you want freely and turn every feature into an advantage.
- Heavy on-course personalization
- Ideal user journeys
- Prompt quizzes and assessments
- Custom domains for every course
- Effortless payment unification
- Smart third-party integrations
- Completely Whitelabel and re-brandable operations
- Next-gen reporting and analytics
- Support for solopreneurs and organizations
10. Sell your course
Selling your course involves three key elements. Once these are done, you’ll be ready to hit the play button.
- Pricing: You already know your audience. Now, decide how much you’d like them to pay. Don’t make the mistake of charging too little just because it’s your first course. Remember that this will also decide your reputation in the future. You can also decide a base price and then charge extra for optional add-ons such as extra lectures, curated notes, etc.
- Naming: After the price comes the actual selling. Name your course. This is the last step and not the first because now, your name will be inclusive of your online course material, your audience goals, and your USP as a teacher. The best way to name a course is to describe it as taking a student from point A to point B. i.e. ‘Learn How To Play 5 Yanni Tracks On The Violin In 5 Weeks’.
- Promotions: Start promoting it on social media and personal circles first, and then move on to niche platforms that are relevant to your audience. For example, if your audience is millennials from the US, you should probably tap into Reddit. Remember that it’s your first course. Heavy promotion might not lead to a heavy flow of inquiries and registrations. This is, however, just the beginning. These promotions are going to build your brand image for future courses.
Are you ready?
We reckon you are! There must be a lot of thoughts going through your head with most of them turning into questions such as, “Should I do this?”, “Will it be profitable?”, “Will I be good at it?”. The best part about online teaching is that you only invest time and effort. There is nothing to lose here. You will gain new knowledge for yourself, even if your financial or other goals aren’t met immediately. So, it’s time to stop thinking, and start doing it.
We’ll leave you with some inspirational words from one of the best teachers in the universe.
“Try not. Do… or do not. There is no try.”Yoda, Star Wars
Are you one of the many who has started being more active on LinkedIn, reading more blogs, taking online courses, and flaunting them since the lockdown? It’s not just you; millions of students across the world are also adapting to the e-learning way of life.
Popular EdTech companies reported more than 100% increase in new students after rolling out free and discounted classes. Numerous other EdTech platforms have been offering significant discounts on courses for students across age groups.
Due to the pandemic, at least 1.2 billion school students in 186 countries had to skip school. At least 120 million people in India alone lost their jobs due to the struggling economy. The current situation is a blessing in disguise not just for EdTech companies but for the affected groups as well. Parents do not have to invest in heavy bags, books, travel to school, etc. this year. People who have lost their jobs can capitalize on the surge in online skill up-gradation courses and strengthen their profiles. People working from home can use the travel and office time they’re saving to upgrade their skills as well.
Is it just about the lockdown, though? Or is the lockdown just a catalyst that has opened the doors to a revolution in the way we learn and teach? In the Information Age, it is the latter.
Why is Online Learning Important?
A few months ago, when the worldwide lockdown was in its initial, uncertain stages, a list of 450 online courses offered by Ivy League universities was doing the rounds on social media. These courses covered topics from computer science and business to humanities and design. A decade ago, there were no means other than making it to these universities for accessing this education. Today, any student from any country can pay a nominal amount to watch lectures from esteemed professors, interact with them via forums and live streams, and get yourself a certificate.
The sanctity of prestigious universities is no more in their exclusivity as much as it is purely in their teaching methods and resources. This, undoubtedly, is the best example of how EdTech is democratizing education globally.
With the improvement in bandwidth and data speeds, it is becoming much more comfortable and convenient to pursue education through your laptop or mobile screen.
Mothers in their maternity leave period and professionals who have taken career breaks for any other reason now have a chance to fill the gap in their CVs with new skills.
Startup owners often spend a lot on consultants for expertise in areas they are not skilled enough in. They can take up affordable certificate courses and do it all on their own.
Learning is no longer restricted just to your formal educational years. Everyone everywhere can learn almost anything, whether it is data computing or playing the ukulele.
Why is it Important to Teach Online?
You must have come across a lot of working professionals who have a strong desire to teach in their respective fields after a few years. Teaching has long been considered as more of an option that you turn to after your 40s or close to your retirement age.
With the ability to teach online today, your passion need not be postponed anymore.
You can take a few hours out of your work schedule and teach online courses that not only satisfy your heart but also your wallet. Just as anyone can learn, almost anyone can teach now.
A technical writer from India can teach English to migrant students in the UK at a cost they can afford.
It isn’t just a matter of convenience and business opportunity. There is research that illustrates that students in online classes retain 25-60% more of what has been taught, as compared to 8-10% in a physical classroom.
There is a lot of nitty-gritty of which helps both students and teachers. Just think about the physical setting. Within the four walls of a classroom in an institutional environment, some students aren’t very open with questions and interaction.
When they sit in the comfort of their homes and have the option of personally messaging their teachers, a new level of ease is possible. This also helps teachers give personal attention to students, something parents always demand.
Why the 21st Century is All About Teaching Online
The idea of a ‘personal touch’ which often discouraged people from online learning, has taken a backseat now. The level of personalization possible for both students and teachers is astounding.
- E-learning takes 40-60% less time than a traditional class and allows students to reread, skip, and fast forward through concepts.
- Students can now schedule classes at a time convenient for them.
- They can access course material whenever they want to.
- Students can interact with peers from around the world and discuss lessons.
- They can get used to innovative methods of virtual teamwork, which will also go on to help them in their professional lives.
In his book 21 Lessons for the 21st Century, historian, intellectual, and professor Yuval Noah Harari has highlighted that schools across the world are stuck in traditional, rote-learning ways.
Online learning can foster a shift from these traditions into a new age of innovation and critical thinking.
Technical Advantages of Teaching Online
Online payments have become the order of the day. A lot of schools have started accepting fees via online means. The process of online payments for EdTech platforms has made receiving and paying money quicker. Plus, traditional tuition teachers who had to haggle with parents for home tuitions can now formalize courses and charge standard fees.
A decade ago, people in developed countries were sceptical about both online learning and online payments. All of it has changed now.
Another crucial factor is internet speed. As Wi-Fi becomes the second oxygen of the global citizen, countries all over the world are working towards making the internet more accessible.
Global average internet speeds have only risen in the past few years (30% in 2017 and more than 15% in 2018). In India, faster and cheaper internet has made it possible for students in rural areas to access quality education over their mobile phones at reasonable prices.
There has simultaneously also been an upgrade in technological devices. The sheer number of smartphone brands has led to competitive rates and amazing features being available at affordable prices. With a 5G network, your mobile can now do almost anything that was only possible on your laptop. Out of about 7.8 billion people in this world, there are about 5.15 billion unique mobile phone users today.
We are at a unique crossroads in the history of humanity, where physical, logistical, technological, intellectual factors have converged and created newer ways of consuming information; modern ways of absorbing knowledge, unique ways of learning, and teaching.
Technologies to Help You Teach Online
Let’s now get to how the ideals of learning better can be achieved in practicality through online teaching methods. Technology is invariably evolving and presenting newer forms of making lessons unique. The most basic tools, such as Google Suite, Evernote, Slack, etc. can be a good start as most of us already use them for office work. Even for teachers who are not very tech-savvy, these tools are elementary to figure out on your own and master. Here’s a quick list of tools for beginners to intermediate online teachers.
- Evernote: This is an app that can help you convert notes into quick slides and can be used across mobiles and computers. You can divide and structure your notes into separate notebooks, share them with others, and even let others edit them. Evernote’s audio, picture, and handwriting features can make your content everything from attractive, cute, and appealing to professional and engaging.
- Slack: Slack is originally a communication tool for professional teams. As an online teacher, it can help you share notes, hold discussions, and even send DMs. It takes hardly a few minutes to get acquainted with its features, which are numbered but useful.
- Google Suite: Google has its own and more accessible version of Word Docs, spreadsheets, and slides, which can be made and edited collaboratively. You don’t need to buy or download Microsoft Office; you can log in to your Google Suite anytime.
- Canva: Websites such as Canva help you design pages and make your presentations look more appealing. Canva designs can, in fact, easily pass off as professional Photoshop work at times.
There are a plethora of video calling services and platforms that can be used to teach students without spending half of your lecture duration, asking each other if you are audible. You can use the tools mentioned above seamlessly on these video platforms without much hassle. Here are the best ones to begin with.
- Zoom: Zoom is probably the most popular video calling platform at the moment. You can share your screen, play videos for the class, write notes, send files, and even scribble the way teachers do on physical blackboards. You must have used it already for work meetings or personal calls. Zoom calls can quickly add up to 100 participants, so large classrooms are not a problem either.
- Google Classroom: As usual, Google has an answer for everything. Through this platform, teachers can create and manage classes, assignments, give real-time feedback, and send reports to parents. Students and parents can continuously keep track of their course progress and receive regular summaries, reviews, etc. from the teacher.
- Skype: Skype is no more just an app you use to video call relatives and friends who are far away. You can hold video lectures with up to 50 students on Skype, and even share your mobile screen if required. The only limitation of Skype, which you must’ve heard often, is that it lags at times and cannot be trusted with low internet speeds.
Recorded Classes and Live Classes
With each of the tools mentioned above, you can hold both live classes and record them for later viewing.
From a student’s perspective, recorded classes are convenient as they can view them at leisure. They can also skip and replay, which allows them to work at their own pace.
Recorded classes also usually have lower costs as compared to live courses. For a teacher, a recorded class puts more focus on delivering a regular lecture and focus on the storytelling. However, you can also hold a live class and record it for later viewing.
As a matter of fact, with a platform like FreshLMS, you, the teacher can focus entirely on your lesson. FreshLMS comes equipped with features that can help you create AND sell your course in under 60 minutes. These include:
- Heavy on-course personalization
- Ideal user journeys
- Prompt quizzes and assessments
- Custom domains for every course
- Effortless payment unification
- Smart third-party integrations
- Completely Whitelabel and re-brandable operations
- Next-gen reporting and analytics
- Support for solopreneurs and organisations
How to Pick the Right Tools to Teach Online?
To pick the right online teaching tools, you first need to list down your class goals. These would depend on the type of class, the material, age-group of students, etc.
For example, you have to teach a group of teenagers. These restless, young minds need not just storytelling but something more. Games are the right way of holding their attention.
- Gamification: For gamifying your lectures, you can use quizzing tools such as Quizziz and Quizlet. There are also other gaming tools such as Educandy, Kahoot!, and Gimkit that you can use to make multiple games for multiple classes. Games make the class fun for both students and teachers alike. Apps like Quizzes can also be used for family game nights.
- Interaction: An essential aspect of online lectures is interaction. For this specific goal, teachers can use tools like Nearpod, Google Tour Creator, etc. which help you integrate VR, give prompts, take virtual field trips, and much more. Interaction has now surpassed just personal chat and voice notes, and this is just the beginning.
- Storytelling: The most important goal of teaching in any environment is storytelling. You won’t be surprised that there are apps for this too. StoryboardThat is an app that provides graphic organizers, templates, lesson plans, themes, characters, props, GIFs, etc. If you aren’t ready for high-level tools, you can simply use a combination of Slides and Canva designs and still make your class fun, creative, interactive, and colourful at the same time.
Teach Online: Tips That You Should Know
Once you begin conducting your online classes, you will have a lot of questions. Here are some of the most common and basic ones, answered.
- Personal attention: Usually in physical classrooms, questions such as “Is this clear?” is usually met with either a reluctant “Yes” or indifferent silence. In an online class, you may not be able to watch the faces of your students and gauge their expressions. What you can do is use polling and quizzing features. You can introduce a reward system for feedback polls, which will encourage students to provide you with honest feedback. This will then help you to determine which student requires attention in which area, and address it through personal chat and conversations.
- Group activities: Zoom’s Breakout Room is the best-known tool for group assignments in online classes. Teachers can split students into groups, and all groups can work simultaneously with time limits. Another basic method that you can use is to throw open assignments for review and comments from peers. This way, students don’t just work together but also learn from each other’s positive and negative points. These activities can go a long way in building class harmony and friendships.
- Managing Technical Issues: Almost all technical issues of while teaching online have one explanation – lousy internet. The very first thing you need is a good internet connection. Of course, your students will also need one. Once you get a new internet plan, test it on video calls with friends, and test-run all your online teaching tools as well. Be prepared for everything. Have a mobile data backup plan in case your Wi-Fi fails, and encourage students to do the same. With 4G and now 5G, cellular data can support online classes as well as broadband and WiFi.
- Adapt to mobile: As we mentioned before, there is almost nothing that you cannot do on mobile. There are unique teaching apps for use on basic mobile phones and even for offline connectivity. Nowadays, a lot of budget and mid-range Android phones have excellent cameras, which aids video lectures a lot. You might find the phone screen to limiting a space, but you can overcome that too, by practising hand gestures and testing different angles for your phone. It would also be wise to invest in an excellent mobile phone rig that leaves your hands free for articulation and animation.
- Designing the coursework: If there were a course on creating an online course, new teachers would take it. There’s so much information at your disposal that you can get confused about what to use and what not to use for your syllabus. Designing a course structure begins with answering some basic questions and converting these answers into a step-by-step plan.
- Who are your students? What is their age group, qualification, likes, dislikes, etc.? Make a consumer profile-type summary of them.
- What do they already know about the subject matter that you can use as a starting point for your course?
- What could their possible goals be concerning your course?
- How much time would you require to reach these goals?
- What is the pace of learning that would suit them?
- What are other teachers in the same field doing? Can you take inspiration from existing courses offered by universities?
- Designing homework and assignments: Firstly, understand that you’ll probably spend as much time teaching as you would preparing assignments and evaluating homework. Next, be regular with assignments. Pre-decide the homework for each lecture. Integrate as much creativity as possible in assignment briefs. Ask students to sketch, draw, animate, act. Working from home requires a special kind of motivation to get out of your comfortable bed and work on a screen. Make sure your assignments are fun enough to provide that motivation, whether your students are 10-year-old kids or middle-aged professionals.
Mistakes to avoid
Whether it’s your first time or your fifth, there are bound to be some areas of improvement. Teaching is, after all, learning again and again. Here are a few common problem areas addressed.
- The pacing problem
The problem with a lot of courses, online and offline, is that they become difficult to follow because of the sheer amount of information loaded in them. Through a screen, it becomes even more difficult for a teacher to judge the mood of the class and re-pace lectures accordingly. So, if it’s your first online course, make sure that you start with a light session with fewer information points and more focus on discussion, analysis, retention. This will also give you a better idea of your student group, their mentality, their choices, and their attitudes. A few lectures in, you will know their pace and can design the remaining conferences as per that pace. How much information to put in a course is a question that you won’t solve in one class or course. A few lectures later, you will have enough practice and experience to have the right answer to that question. So keep yourself open to new insights, new revelations, and new methods all the time. It is, after all, a learning process for you too.
- Selecting a course and its content
If you are confused at the very first question, which is “What do I teach?”, you have a lot of follow-up questions to ask. However, the most important one is “What am I good at?”. Other questions like “What is in demand/trend right now?”, “What does my audience want?”, “What will pay me more?” are secondary. It is the age-old excellence-success bargain. If you’re good at something and believe in your wisdom, you will find the audience for it, and you will find success too. It is better to be an expert in something you know than to be a mediocre performer in something you’re not very good at. The world is a small place; you will find takers for anything. It doesn’t have to be coding or big data. You could even design a course on the lifecycle of arachnids and find a class full of eager students from around the world. Find your niche and excel in it.
- Market strategy
What is your go-to-market strategy? If you’re a marketing or media professional, you already know this term. You might even be teaching or learning it online. A GTM (go-to-market) strategy is just the strategy that a company uses to bring their product into the market and create value through a business plan. You don’t need this jargon. You just need to follow the three necessary steps of marketing.
- Find out what people want.
- Deliver it to them
- Tell them that you gave it to them.
In practical terms, if your area of expertise is, say, management, find out existing courses on management. Look for gaps and carve out a niche that no one else is addressing. The next step is to tackle that niche and design a course. The final step is to sell your course. Selling your course doesn’t just mean advertising it when before you start it, it also means sharing feedback when it’s over. Let the world know that your students are satisfied. It will help you get more students to sign up for your next course. All of this is a meticulous strategy that needs to be ingrained in your course plan.
- Announcing and launching a course on the same day
This would be a very rookie mistake to make. If you announce your course and commence it on the same day, you’re not giving students enough time to notice your course, think about it and then enrol. It also makes your course look like a limited period FMCG offer and gives an impression of poor planning. Instead, keep enough space between your announcement and launch. Post it on social media platforms. Give teasers and sneak peeks, which will generate excitement for your course. Take a good week and plan a strategy for each day of the week. Get your close friends and relatives to publicize your course as well. You can also use this plan to flaunt your achievements, thus proving your credibility and expertise in the course matter. The whole problem with announcing and launching on the same day is that all of this isn’t possible in a day.
- Not having a clear course structure
Your course, whether beginner, intermediate or advanced, should have a specific goal that takes the learner from point A to point B. You should be able to explain the benefit of your course in one or two sentences. For example, “This online marketing course will teach fresh graduates to use Instagram and Facebook for promotion, sales, and engagement by acquainting them with various tools offered by Facebook.” Decide your point A, and point B, and then fill the space in between with a plan breakdown. Teaching is an art, but it takes as much structure and strategy as any other job. It is, after all, the art of sharing. You cannot share effectively unless you plan your communication.
This might have been a lot of information to take in, so read it at your own pace. Treat it like a mini online course on online courses. And lastly – research, research, and research. Check out multiple online tools and platforms and test them. Decide the best combination of devices, platforms, and resources for yourself. The world of teaching online has bright prospects for you, so jump right in and start your journey!
Today, it has become a reality. Technology has changed the way you work and live. Your company has no time to waste. It has to embrace the changes and become future-ready quickly.
So, how can companies keep themselves relevant?
The answer lies in the core of your company – your employees.
Gyan Nagpal, an award-winning author, had written, “In times of rapid disruption and change, what we often realize quite painfully, is that all we have are experts on yesterday. No one is a true expert on tomorrow.”
If you want to be the change-maker in your industry or be recognized as a future-ready company, you must prepare your employees for the future.
This can happen only by practicing continuous learning.
How to Implement Continuous Learning in Your Company
There are various ways to train your employees. But the two popular methods of training are:
1. Offline training
Offline training or classroom training refers to conducting training sessions in classrooms. The advantage of offline training is that it offers a one-to-one interaction with the trainer. Participants can get their queries resolved immediately. The downside of it is the cost and coordination.
From arranging logistics to scheduling training keeping the trainer and employee’s availability requires a lot of back and forth planning. Not to forget the additional costs of travel and hospitality that you have to incur to make your trainers comfortable.
There are also chances of participants not turning up on the day of training due to unforeseen work commitments.
2. Online training
Online training can happen in various forms. It can happen in the form of a webinar or a live session with the trainer, or it can be an on-demand training uploaded on websites or the company’s intranet if it is internal training.
The downside of online training could be a bad user experience due to weak internet connectivity. Another issue could be that a self-paced format would also lead to employees procrastinating on learning and delaying the completion of the course.
However, these issues have to be solved by the employees themselves. They need to dedicate time to training.
Why Must Employee Training Happen Online?
To foster continuous learning, employee training must happen online. Here are a few reasons why we believe it must happen online.
1. Collaborate and Make Learning Fun:
Contrary to popular beliefs, online training can be collaborative in nature and can be an enjoyable experience for your employees too. Employees can ask questions and receive solutions from other community members and trainers.
You can also make learning engaging by adding social sharing buttons for participants to share their completion certificates online. An intuitive interface with quizzes and games can make learning fun for your employees.
2. Self-paced Learning:
The advantage of online training is that employees can access it anytime, anywhere. They can watch it on their mobile phone while traveling or access it on their laptop on a workday when there is less work. Learning needs time and dedication.
Given the fast-paced environment, your employees work in; they might miss out on the training. Online training solves this pain point by giving employees the benefit of learning at their own pace. They can pause and start the lesson again from where they stopped.
3. On the Go Micro-Learning:
In this world of information overload, employees may find lengthy courses overwhelming. Breaking them into a small, digestible form of micro-lessons will help employees to understand the concepts better and faster.
4. Reduce the Cost of Training:
Online courses are cost-effective because companies will no longer have to spend money on the logistics, and trainer’s expenditure. Companies have to just upload their courses on a learning management system (LMS) and provide access to all the employees.
5. Employees can Become Trainers:
With online training, even employees can become trainers. All they need to do is build a course and upload it to the LMS. With employees becoming trainers, you can create an innovative learning culture in your organization.
Wondering how to Build an Online University within Your Company?
How can FreshLms Create an Online University within Your Company?
Fresh LMS allows companies to build their universities. It’s a learning management system that gives you a platform to build multiple courses within minutes and manage them through a single platform.
With Fresh LMS, you can host videos, create quizzes, and use gamification to engage users. You can also create responsive courses for your employees, so they can access them on their mobile devices too.
Got additional resources to share with your employees? Well, you don’t have to email them the documents individually. You can upload it with your course. Fresh LMS also lets you develop a thriving community where members and trainers can interact with each other.
So, What are you waiting for?
Build your online university for free with Fresh LMS and create a continuous learning culture for your company, right away!
Online Qizzes, blog, Course Online, E Learning, Learning Management System, Online Course, Online LearningThe quiz is the most underrated marketing strategy in the current armory you have for marketing and selling your courses.
A Quiz has the potential to go viral and drive your point through a series of questions that not only intrigues the quiz taker but also instigates him to share it with his friends and teams on social channels like Facebook and LinkedIn.
Three Important Steps For Creating Online Quizzes
1. List Down the Right Quiz Ideas and their Titles:Yes, you have to look for the right quiz Ideas. The combination of the right quiz idea and the right title is the first step of making your quiz go viral.
Some Quiz Ideas for the Courses:
Quiz Idea 1 :
Let’s say, you are creating a course on “20 recipes of healthy and tasty food in your kitchen.”
Now, to market this course, the author can create some exciting quizzes like
How much do you know if the food you eat is healthy or not?
Is your daily breakfast healthy?
Quiz Idea 2:
If you are building a course on Do It Yourself Technical SEO
The quiz can be some of these.
Do I really know about Technical SEO? Let’s take this quiz and know.
Is Technical SEO Just a Hype or Reality? Let’s take this quiz and know.
And like this, every course can have at least 2 to 3 different quiz ideas and the one which goes viral can be pushed more.
2. Choose Right Online Quiz Maker
The idea and titles are a great start but then to take it to the world, and you need to make sure you choose the right online quiz maker which has the following
- Flexibility to create the way you think about it
- Ability to share the quiz once taken
- Lead Generation forms to generate more leads
- The price point, which is pocket-friendly.
If you search for them, surprisingly, we see only a few good online quiz makers and one of them is FreshLMS.
FreshLMS has the flexibility to create a quiz that can have single select, multi-select, images, text, colors, etc. It is on the cloud, so the performance reports are available for each quiz you create.
Aah one more thing !! The first Two Quizzes on FreshLMS online quiz maker is free for all.
3. Promote it on Social Media Channels, Email Campaigns
Once you have completed the first two steps, now it’s the time to shout loud and share it with the world. Do share it in your email campaigns, Social Media, Do pay campaigns of small budgets in social media and let the quiz be visible to a larger number audience.
One Live Example which will blow up your mind !!
The Foundation has fantastic courses that help individuals think in the right direction and build their own SaaS software products. Now to pull the right audience, the team has created a quiz – Do you have an Entrepreneurial Mind?
The Foundation used a quiz in its marketing strategy by pairing it with a Facebook ad campaign. This combination was able to cut their cost per lead from $6.00 to $3.80 and collected over 16,000 leads and millions in revenue. That’s quite the turnout if you ask us.
It your time to create a quiz and generate more leads as well as sell online more !! Sign up with FreshLMS and create your own Quiz
This happens once in a century.. After 1918 Spanish flu, it is now that a pandemic is declared by WHO due to corona virus or COVID 19.
Obviously many things changed very fast. We get scared when someone sneezes or coughs even once. We are not going out on the streets.
The financial markets are going south steeply.
There is panic all over. No sanitizers, toilet papers, masks in the stores.
So what do we do? We keep on watching the news and google about it and be scared or we control what is in our hands.
We suddenly now have a lot of free time to think for ourselves, our families, our health, and plan for the future properly.
We all need to start to seriously think of creating a second source of income which can help us get Financial Independence and keep afloat even when our jobs are at stake and it keeps on running even when you are asleep
“If you don’t find a way to make money while you sleep, you will work until you die.”
— Warren Buffett
One Thing You Should Start Doing Right Away !!
You are good at what you have been doing for quite some years. It could be at work or your hobby.
Forex: It could be playing guitar, investing in Real estate, Managing patients, Making fine deserts, or anything !!
Just go ahead and create a course of the hobby or the work you love to do every day !!
First Question in your Mind !!
So now you might be thinking, aah there are so many already out there, why would people buy… Ok, let’s think this for a second, the only difference between you and them is that they took one step forward earlier.
You are not late. You will find your own audience, you will learn how to market, you will learn how great you feel when someone takes the course and message you saying, it changed my way of thinking !!
Just spend one hour a day and you will be ready in 20 days – even after retakes…
Next Question Popping up in You !!
How do I sell it… I don’t know how to create a website, link to payment gateways, etc, etc…
Don’t worry, there are some wonderful online platforms like FreshLMS where you can build your online school. You just don’t need to know tech at all to create and sell courses online.
Other Question… They will be Pretty Costly !!
Nopes. We are here so that we together beat the corona virus. We are not charging anything till April 31st. After that, it’s < $ 1 a day.
Next Question… How do I Record !!
Thank God you got this question now… It is pretty easy, you have plenty of tools out there but the one I love the most is the loom. It lets you record HD clarity videos in just one click from the browser. It has a wonderful free trial version and I am sure you would love it.
So don’t think much of coronavirus… Together let’s stick and beat this virus.
Let’s start creating our own course now and gain our Financial Independence back!!
Sales as a function is a combination of soft skills and product knowledge. They bring revenue to your company. They are the face of your company. So, it is critical to ensure that they are well-trained in all aspects. It is a myth to believe that salespeople do not require any specific training. Companies invest a lot in developing products, marketing, and recruitment, but never on their sales team. However, a research study by Harvard Business Review shows that companies that invested in training their people were 9% more effective than their competitors. It can even improve sales and profits by 24%.
An ideal sales training program lasts for 90 days and could even go up to a year. However, in a fast-paced environment, dedicating three months to a year is too much of an ask.
Hence, the best way to address this by conducting sales training online. Let’s look at how online sales training could benefit your company.
8 Reasons to do Sales Training Online
1. Up-to-Date Product Demos
Your products will go through multiple updates and revisions. Your sales team cannot give a demo of a product as old as two years to your customers. But neither can they spend time getting acquainted with the changes frequently. Online sales training will give them an understanding of the product and help them stay updated.
2. On-board New Sales People Faster and Easier
As mentioned earlier, typically, it takes 90 days for a new salesperson to be onboarded. Online sales training enables the new employee to learn about the company, the products, and the sales processes, and work simultaneously. The online training also does not go on for 90+ days. So, it’s easier and faster to onboard new salespeople.
3. Reduce the Cost of Training
On average, sales training costs $954,070 for most companies. You will also incur costs on arranging the logistics and travel expenses of trainers, which could go up to $103,750. You can reduce these costs by taking your sales training online. Trainers can record the sessions from wherever they are located, and you can upload it to your learning management system (LMS) for everybody’s easy access.
4. On-the-go Micro Learning
Micro-learning is about breaking down learning content into a small, digestible format. With the attention span of humans becoming as less as a goldfish, micro-learning is the best way to ensure that the learners understand the concepts better. Micro-learning works on the 90/20/8 principle, which means people’s attention span wanes after the first 8 minutes. Considering how busy the salespeople are, learning a huge chunk of information can be overwhelming for them. With online sales training, you can break the huge chunk of information into 3-5 minutes lessons, making the learning more interesting and impactful for salespeople.
5. Learn from Successful Sales People
Scheduling training sessions with successful salespeople can be cumbersome, and you cannot do it regularly. In online sales training, you can arrange live sessions with successful salespeople or even record their training and upload it as an on-demand training lesson. This will help your team learn the best practices from the best people in the industry.
6. Learn at your Pace
Time is a major challenge for salespeople. Sometimes they have to miss in-class learning sessions when they are on the field or traveling for meetings. This can impact their learning. With online sales training, your team can assess all the lessons anytime using any device they desire. They can learn at their pace from wherever they are without impacting their work. They can even pause and resume or rewind the courses to learn better.
7. Test your Learning through Chapter / Module-level Quiz
To ensure that your salespeople have understood the concepts correctly, you can test their learning after every chapter or module through quiz and gamification. From scenario-based questions to multiple-choice questions, you can do many things if you have the right LMS platform. A chapter or module-wise quiz is the best way to gain clarity on the progress of your team members.
8. Collaborate and make Learning fun
Who said online learning is a lonely activity? You can make it as fun and engaging as classroom training. You can develop online communities for participants to share information or queries on the forum and receive support from other members. You can also integrate social sharing so participants can share their progress or announce the completion of training on social media. The idea is to make the course as engaging for the participants as possible.
How can FreshLMS help you in putting your Online Sales Training Course in place?
Once you prepare your sales training videos, it’s time to put it on a learning platform and provide access to your sales team.
FreshLMS is a cloud-based learning platform that can help you to upload and manage any kind of training online.
The Advantage of FreshLMS learning platform is, you can:
- Create courses with just a few clicks
- Host videos, create a quiz and even use gamification to engage users
- Get the status of the courses and subscriptions in one click
- Set up payments for the courses
- Integrate it with your preferred systems to export data
- Create mobile responsive courses
- Embed videos, PDFs, Word documents, and PPTs as additional resources
- Collaborate with other members and trainers via chats and comments
- And offer certification to your members on completion of the course
Start building a learning platform for your organization Now.
Personal Branding, blog, Build brand, Champions, Jobs Selecting, Learning Management System, Online Course
You have worked really hard to reach the position you are in today. You are in a senior role with more than 10 or 15 years of experience. From here on, you don’t win jobs based on your interviews. It is purely based on how your potential employers find you.
Building a Brand for yourself is vital to go to the next level in your career.
Below are some practical, attainable, and very cost-effective ways to build your brand and move to achieve the next big thing in your career.
3 Simple Ways to Build your Brand
1. Start Expressing your Thoughts and Opinions:
As you have been in the domain for more than a decade, you for sure know many things which the world around you might even think of. Start putting down your thoughts in the form of blogs. Today it is easy to create a blog. You can do it in Medium or LinkedIn Posts to start with.
Key Points to Remember:
- Don’t worry about making it look perfect. Nothing is ideal in the world. The more you write, the better it will be. It will then become like a routine.
- Use the more accessible channels like Medium, LinkedIn Posts to pen down your thoughts and publish them.
- Use Grammarly to do the necessary grammatical checks.
- Don’t worry about the number of words, super high-quality images, etc. The thoughts can be small, big. What matters is penning it down.
- Just Write as if no one matters to you.
Marketing Mavericks like Seth Godin, Neil Patel, Rand Fishkin do not write like a publisher. They write just like a normal human being. They are the best people to learn from for brand building.
2. Go To Events:
Yes. Even today, the events matter. You might have a lot of meetups happening around you in the areas which are of your interest. Join them, attend the meetups. You will meet lovely people out there. You will have a lot of exciting things to share and learn.
Key Points to Remember:
- Don’t aim to attend some big conferences way away from home from day 1.
- Start attending the meetups in and around your place. If you don’t find any meet up then it’s an excellent opportunity for you to create one and gather like-minded people.
- Once in a while, try attending online conferences and start e-meeting people.
- After some time of doing the above points and you start interacting with many people, you can surely go and attend the big ones.
Companies in the field of accounting, marketing, service, etc. do conduct big events once a year wherein all the like-minded people of that industry or domain join in and share the knowledge.
3. Build Course:
what would be more rewarding than converting your knowledge into a structured course and selling it to the world. It is a beautiful way to help a lot of people who want to learn new things. Internet is the medium that connects everyone in the world.
Courses give your brand a real booster. Everyone does not do it. Courses show your commitment to the domain you are in, the confidence you have in your domain, and your willingness to share it with a broader audience for good. These are the qualities is that every employer looks into their senior management hires too 🙂
Key Points to Remember:
- You don’t need to be an expert in technology to build and sell your courses. Just record using the platforms like Loom and upload on to FreshLMS and put the pricing. That’s it, you can then start selling your course. Everything related to Hosting, security, payment gateways, member management is taken care of by the FreshLMS platform itself.
- Don’t worry if you see a lot of courses or videos on Youtube on your domain. “Bits and Pieces” of information here and there will not give complete knowledge. Your structured course for sure can.
- Nothing is perfect. You just have to start it, and as you move on, it will become better day after day.
- A consistent parallel income will come your way. Nothing is more satisfying than converting your passion into a regular income.
You don’t have to create a course on what is HOT, you create a course on what you are an expert at, and the world has millions of people who would love to learn from you. There is no Nobel profession other than SHARING YOUR KNOWLEDGE.
So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and start building your brand.
I have immense respect for the Solopreneurs and the small businesses. They are the ones who are the backbone of the economy of any country. Sadly they are also the ones who always get overlooked. The government policies are either for unemployed or for the Fortune 500 companies.
LinkedIn, Freelancer.com, Upwork.com, Dribble, etc. are all filled with solopreneurs. It is these solopreneurs who are sharing their immense knowledge on to these platforms day in day out to search for work. This incredible content is what makes these platforms super popular and reach a valuation of Billions of Dollars.
Some of the exciting stats on Freelance statistics
In the USA, People who freelance contribute an estimated $715 billion in freelance earnings to the economy
In the UK, the flexibility offered by Britain’s freelancers is worth £21 billion to the UK economy in added value.
Solorpreneurs are not the guys who work on Technology only; they can be a painter, dancer, librarian, chef, musician, writer, sports player, or anyone you can think of.
Every solopreneur must succeed in what he or she is set out to do. It is the only way our world can be a beautiful place.
“Happiness makes you more Humane.”
Sure Shot formula of Success for every Solorpreneur or a Small Business owners.
1. Create Your Brand from Day -100.
Yes, If you are planning to do stuff on your own, then you have to start creating your personal brand. So if you think that after three months you want to begin to do something on your own, then you better start working on your branding from today.
What is a brand:
For example I want to work with a freelance content writer Vs. I want to work with Rahul, who writes terrific content.
Your prospective customers remembering your name for what you do is a huge differentiating factor between you and others.
How to create your brand:
a. Create a Course and Sell or Share:
Packaging your knowledge into a course is a great way to let people know you better. Capture your expertise in videos or documents and make it available to the world for a price or for free.
The people who take the course are your prospective buyers as they know you better and if you price the course, you can start generating a steady income too 🙂
b. Be Vocal and Be Social:
Having a strong opinion in the areas you deal with is very critical. This shows your confidence and your belief in the business areas you deal with. So on whichever social media platform or even or in discussions with your prospective leads, make sure you put your opinion in the right way.
2. Have Financial Reserve for 6 – 12 months:
If you are switching from a full-time job to freelancing then make sure you have reserve money to feed yourself, your family and invest into business for at least 6 – 12 months.
Everyone has a plan until you get punched in the face.
Be ready for everything, including a not so steady income or no income for the first few months of your solopreneurship.
3. Make your family comfortable:
Discuss in detail with your family on the pros, cons, and the rationale behind taking this big step in life. You must make your family feel secure and comfortable. You can only then concentrate 110% on the work you are going to do.
4. Just go for it:
No amount of planning can beat the experience you get while doing. So don’t let yourself get into the analysis paralysis and don’t move forward.
All the best for your incredible solopreneur journey.
Do share your thoughts and ideas so that I can also share it with the world and make every solopreneur successful.
You can create courses in just a few clicks using FreshLMS. Start building your course today.