Course Online, Build brand, Buildings, E Learning, Learning Experience, Learning Management System, Learning Management System, LMS, Online Course, Udemy Marketplace, Uncategorized

Back in the day, kids wanted to be doctors, pilots, firefighters, movie stars, and sportspersons. Ask the kids of the 21st Century, and they will have answers such as ‘Vlogger’, ‘Influencer’, or ‘YouTuber’. The rise of the YouTuber as a profession has been momentous. 

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Udemy Marketplace, blog, Build brand, E Learning, Fashion, Learning Experience, Learning Management System, Persona 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 platform

Introspection 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

TL;DR

 

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. 

Self-branded platforms

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

Udemy Marketplace

 

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 

Udemy Marketplace

 

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? 

 

The verdict…

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.

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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

Types 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

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, 

and discussions. 


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.


Create your first Online Course

At FreshLMS, customization is the top priority. While hosting your course, it provides the following features which let you design every part of your course as per your preferences.

  • 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?

Create Online Course

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
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Uncategorized, E Learning, Learning Management System, Learning Management System

Some lessons are learned in college, online, and our workplaces. And then there are some that we learn when we join a new organization. These trainings are unique to that organization. They are mandatory for all employees so they can be onboarded into the organization in the right way. In this blog, we will talk about the five mandatory trainings every organization must provide to its employees. Let’s get started!


Five mandatory trainings that every organization must do


1. Employee onboarding
 

Employee onboarding


Do you know organizations that have an effective onboarding program retain
50% more new employees than organizations that don’t? Onboarding programs are meant to introduce the new employees to the culture, values, and the rules of the organization.

The objective is to ensure that the employee is aware of the organizational culture before they start working.
Onboarding is different from orientation. Unlike orientation, where only the HR is involved in welcoming the new employees, onboarding requires the leaders from different departments to introduce their role to the new employees. It is, therefore, important to structure your onboarding process in the right way. The absence of a well-structured onboarding program could lead to a high employee attrition rate.


2. Prevention of sexual harassment

sexual harassment


The Prevention of Sexual Harassment Act (POSH) is a law that safeguards women from sexual harassment at workplaces. The Government has necessitated every organization to implement this law. Training employees and creating awareness about this crucial law is important to promote safety in the workplace. It educates the employees about the steps to take in case of a mishap.


3. Compliance training:

Mandatory trainings every organizations must do 1

Every industry has to follow specific compliance rules to maintain the safety and dignity of businesses and employees. It is, therefore, mandatory for employees to undergo this training to ensure proper governance in your organization. Compliance training helps you to minimize risks and safeguard your reputation in the industry. Absence of compliance training may jeopardize the reputation of your organization and could also result in legal fines and
revenue loss of up to $14.82 million


4. Project-specific training

Project-specific training

Project-specific training is provided for projects that require skills to solve specific business problems and goals. These trainings are mandatory for projects that need specific skillset. Lack of training could lead to failure of the project and can indirectly impact your reputation.


5. Acquiring future skills

Acquiring future skills

Technology and business needs, keep changing. Today, technology like Artificial Intelligence, Big Data analytics, are dominating the board room conversations. The advent of these technologies is making employees anxious about their future in the organization. Continuous training is the only solution to this challenge. Training employees in future technologies will give them the much-required job security. It will also encourage them to stay relevant in their chosen field. 


How can FreshLMS help you in mandatory training?

Gone are those days when employees could spend a week or two in acclimatizing themselves to the organization’s culture. Today, organizations follow an agile culture. Faster go-to-market is their priority. In such a culture, spending two weeks in mandatory training would mean a loss of time and resources. 


However, these training are equally important for the long-term performance of the organization. Without these training, organizations could face many problems in terms of miscommunication, misunderstandings, lack of transparency, and even a dent to the brand’s reputation. Given the need for training and the lack of time, the only way an organization can reach a mid-point is by using a learning management system (LMS). LMS enables you to build online courses that can be assessed by your employees anytime, anywhere, without causing any hindrance to their daily tasks. 


Learning platforms like FreshLMS can help you to build a learning culture in your organization. You can create online courses in a few clicks and upload them to the LMS. You can even update the course according to the change in rules. It’s that simple! 


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
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Learning Management System, Champions, E Learning, Jobs Selecting, Learning Experience, Learning Management System, Online Course, Solopreneur, Training, Video

What you will learn:


  • What is a video-based employee training?
  • Why is it more beneficial than traditional training?
  • How can FreshLMS help you for free?

Organizations operate in a fast-paced environment. There is very little time for the employees to settle in and get used to the new work and environment. Most organizations look at it as a waste of precious man-hours and money (considering that the average training cost is around $1,041 for each employee). They consider it a mere formality and find quick ways to complete the training, which honestly can be quite catastrophic in the future. 


If you ask an HR professional, they will tell you that an ideal onboarding period should be between 90 to 100 days. However, a survey by CareerBuilder showed a very different picture. The survey of 2,300 hiring managers and HR professionals indicated that only 11% of companies have an onboarding process of more than three months. 25% said the process gets over within a day, while 26% confirmed that they spend a week or less on onboarding

 

Understandably, organizations do not have the time and resources to conduct extensive training programs, given the pressure of working in an agile environment and the focus on accelerating the go-to-market process. However, the HRs argue that an onboarding program of less than a month can impact the retention rate. It takes time for employees to get accustomed to the new culture, compliance, and duties. 

They say that having a more extended onboarding program, preferably for a full year, can improve the retention rate by 25%.

So, how can organizations implement this in a cost-effective and time-saving manner?

 

The answer lies in video-based employee training.


What is a video-based employee training? 

video-based employee training?

Video-based employee training is delivered in video format. These videos can be animation videos, interviews of leaders and employees, explainer videos, and corporate videos talking about the company. They are engaging, accessible, and can be viewed anytime by your employees. 


How online learning platforms are beneficial over traditional training?

Here are five reasons why online learning platforms score over traditional classroom training.


1. Cuts cost


Cut Costs

Do you know, on average, a company spends 40% of its training budget on travel costs? Add to it the additional expenses of training material and other logistics. You can save all those expenses by adopting video-based employee training. There is just a one-time expense of developing video-based training. Companies like Microsoft and IBM have saved $303 per person to $579 million in two years, respectively using video-based training. 


2. Aids better learning


Aids better learning

In traditional training, employees have to keep pace with others to complete the training. Sometimes they might miss out on crucial lessons in the process. With video-based training, they can learn at their own pace. They can even replay the lectures or rewind it by a few minutes to learn better. This helps them to get a better grasp on the subject matter.


3. Helps to break complicated subjects into bite-sized content

bite-sized content

According to Forrester’s research, 75% of employees prefer to watch a video rather than read an article, document, or an article. Thanks to its audio-visual capabilities, it also increases the retention by 35%. This means that if you have to train your employees on complicated and technical subjects, then you don’t have to resort to lengthy training formats.

You can break them down into bite-sized videos of 3-5 minutes so that it is easy for them to grasp it. And it need not be easy. Take CitySprint, for example. They created a fun, animated video on how employees should adhere to a checklist to ensure that the package arrives safely. The video drove the points better than a textual or in-class presentation that is easily forgettable.


4. Provide training to a broader audience 

training to a broader audience

Conducting mass-training, especially for employees across different projects, time zones, and locations, can be challenging. Video-based training removes that stress. Employees across various locations can easily access video-based training. You can provide training to 10-100 employees all at once. 


5. Easily measurable


5 Reasons Why Video-based Trainings are Perfect for Your Employees 2

Tracking the effectiveness of the training can be time-consuming. There could also be delays in measuring them as you have to consolidate the ratings from the participants and calculate the average ratings. If you include analytics in your video-based training, you can measure its effectiveness in real-time. This will provide insights on which modules have worked and which require improvement. 



How FreshLMS can help you in launching your own online learning platform?

 

FreshLMS is an easy-to-use learning management system that helps to build a culture of learning in your organization. You can build courses, create courses, introduce gamification, and track its effectiveness using the platform. FreshLMS also allows you to upload video-based training. You don’t have to worry about the storage or the security of the videos. FreshLMS takes care of it.

FreshLMS is in the beta stage. We are striving to create a world-class learning platform for organizations like yours. So, that’s why we are not charging a single penny from you.

So, what are you waiting for? Visit our website to know more and get started on creating a world-class learning experience for your employees.  


                                            Start a learning platform for your organization NOW

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