Want to share your skills and knowledge with the world?
What about leveraging courses to build a profitable and fulfilling business?
In this episode, I discuss course creation with two Mirasee team members.
Lizzie Merritt, Education Team Programs Manager and Diane Holmes, Evangelist, explain how entrepreneurs and coaches can become great teachers and create courses that students will pay for.
Let’s start your next course.
Benefits of creating courses
Courses are a great business tool. You can leverage them to start a business or to grow an existing business.
Teaching courses allows you to share your passion and build a company that gives you fulfillment.
It is also rewarding to know that you are helping your students.
Baking cakes and delivering excellent courses
When you bake a cake for the first time, don’t spend too much time thinking about the color of the icing.
Make sure that you have the ingredients you need to bake a cake. To ensure that you will delight people with a tasty cake, ask them first what sort of cake they want.
Just as you don’t want to spend hours in your kitchen preparing the wrong cake, ask your future students how you can help them.
Talking with your audience will save you time and spare you the pain of baking a cake that no one wants to eat.
The icing on the cake? You will create a great course that will wow your students.
Learn from your test run
This is an iterative process: the first version of your course will probably need improvements. The next version may need minor tweaking as well. And so on.
The way to do this is to pilot your course.
Be transparent with your students: let them know that this is a pilot, a test run.
Then ask them to provide you with feedback so that you know where they need help and what confuses them. This way, you can continually adjust the course to meet the needs of your students.The main key in creating successful courses is to stay connected with your students.Click To Tweet
Focus on the experience
What intimidates beginning course creators is usually the technical aspect of course delivery.
So for your first course, keep the technology part as simple as possible.
For example, meet people in your living room if you provide local courses, or talk to people on Skype.
Make things as simple as possible so that you can get a feel of how it is to share your knowledge and help your students make a transformation in their life.Share your expertise and ask your students what they want: it's a conversation.Click To Tweet
A counterintuitive concept that works
The mentality of a teacher is to be prepared for a course. Have the syllabus, the homework and all the modules ready.
The idea of piloting a course and finding out what people want during the program is counterintuitive. You might think it gives the impression that the teacher is not prepared and doesn’t care about the outcome that he or she provides.
Au contraire! (On the contrary!)
To give your students a great outcome, be flexible enough to find out what works and what doesn’t work so that you can improve your course content accordingly.
Paid versus Free
You may be tempted to offer your course for free, but having paying students is essential for the success of your business.
After all, the only way to know if your course concept and content are valid is to offer a paid pilot and see if it attracts paying customers.
Although you may see yourself primarily as a teacher, you need to marry your teaching skills with smart business strategies so that your teaching becomes part of your business success.
Dealing with stress
Not preparing the entire course in advance can add stress to course creators as they have to create the lessons while they teach their courses.
However, stress is part of the entrepreneur’s life.
The stress related to piloting your courses isn’t as stressful as having your business fail.
If you are a solo-preneur, creating a pilot with the participation of your students creates accountability.
Knowing that your students have paid for your course will motivate you to get your work done.
The zone of proximal development
You have a zone where everything is easy and not challenging. In other zones, things are impossible because they are too advanced.
In between, there is a zone where there are things you aren’t able to do right now but could do with some help: it’s the zone of proximal development.
Being an entrepreneur is about trying new things.
You know your content and skills. Mirasee’s coaches help you formulate and move forward on your courses.Always learn and stretch.Click To Tweet
Can we all become great teachers?
As a business owner, you have skills and expertise.
Anybody can share the knowledge they have gained across their life time, pass it alone and create their legacy.
Teaching as a profession is a skill that can be taught. It takes a long time to get excellent at it.
Chances are that people interested in creating courses are naturally leaning toward being great learners themselves. They enjoy being a teacher and have probably done it unofficially by helping others out.
It is up to you to see what you need to strengthen to become an excellent teacher.
When you care about learning, you have enough of the right skills to jump onboard and help others.
Creating efficient group teaching
The fewer the students are, the more attention the teacher can provide to increase the transformation of his or her students.
You could start with a small group to give all your attention to each student.
Once you run your course and know where people get stuck and what provides them with a transformation, you know what to do to help a larger group.
Start out small and adapt your course overtime to provide the same transformation to more people with less time spent individually with each student.
To follow through a course, students need to be self-motivated learners. It is possible to increase their engagement with the course or with other students.
Teachers can help their students engage with the course by:
- Doing live in person or remote presentations and give assignments
- Mixing up the medium used to deliver the lessons
- Mixing up a live conversation with video clips that illustrate a lesson
The price of a course has also an impact on the engagement. If you paid a certain amount of money for a course, you will more likely show up to every single class to get your money worth.
Whereas if you receive a free PDF document, you might save and forget it in a repository.The price of a course does affect the perception of its value.Click To Tweet
As for increasing the engagement of a student in a group setting, it comes down to why they should engage. People are all in if the engagement contributes to the outcome they look for.
Promising a big outcome does not increase the engagement but the motivation to purchase the course.
Get rich quick promises
We are wired to fast results with less amount of work.
Beware of sales pages promising 6-figure results fast. Reality sets in after the hype of purchasing a shiny course. It will probably take at least a year to reach such numbers.
As a teacher selling your courses, be passionate about telling people what you care about.
Match what you do with your values.
You want your students to stay onboard with you for the long term. If your students love what you do, they will be your next products.
Building up to a 6-figure income takes a long time and work. Make sure that you do fun work.
Grow your business little by little to be better equipped to handle a large amount of students.
Start with 5 students if you can’t handle the workload of providing great results and support to 30 students.Success has a price if you are not prepared.Click To Tweet
Working with Mirasee
The team at Mirasee lives the values they share with the world.
Their signature course, Course Builders Laboratory, is different from other programs teaching course building thanks to their piloting method.
You test your course and make money along the way.
Mirasee also offers valuable support to their students as they are paired with a coach.
The support of the coach allows students to customize their course and get exactly what they need.
Ready to create your next course?
- What is the topic of your course?
- What problem does it solve?
- Who is it for?
- Have people shown interest in what you plan to teach?
It’s time to share your knowledge with the world!
- Build Online Courses That Sell
- Teach and Grow Rich Book
- Email Diane and Lizzie: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Julia Child: Mastering the Art of French Cooking
- Connect with Thuy on Facebook
- Follow Thuy on Twitter
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