Chris is well-versed in what it takes to launch an online course, and has identified five different hats a course creator must be able to wear in order to launch a successful business:
- Expertise: sharp skills, able to identify opportunities.
- Community Building: able to connect and build a list.
- Content Creator: able to understand what the learning path for the modern learner looks like. Online courses are different than regular classrooms. When you design learning content, it has to be so engaging that there is no chance of your student walking away from your content.
- Technologist: able to wrap all of this in technology and market it globally.
- Marketer and business manager.
It’s also important to remember that when you’re getting started, the launch is not the finish line. It is helpful to create a non-scalable learning account to make sure that you can teach before you launch everything and invest money.
“Once you start getting real human beings in there, there needs to be an iterative process and the growth then has the potential to go exponential once you get that real feedback open. Because learning is something that happens between people. It’s not just something that the teacher creates.”
When crafting your offer construction, you can share your method and why it works, but focus mainly on the result. That is why the student is taking your course.
When you are creating your structure, remember to transcend and include. Position your platform as an online course with à la carte pricing, and then group coaching, and personal coaching options so that you can tailor to each students learning style.
On the same note, utilize a learning management system that delivers clear data and allows you to see where users are falling off or not doing well. This gives you the chance to offer personalized assistance, identify the problem, and solve it.
Behavior change and learner process structured courses have the most success because they have a clear learner map and tangible results.
“It’s easy to get sidetracked by the business side, by the tools, by your own obsession with the topic, by your own teaching ability or lack thereof, or your ability to design and use these multimedia tools. The number one thing to focus on like a laser is the student results. Because if you can facilitate that, everything else really takes care of itself.”
Obsession with Results:
Student completion rates are always under 15%. But it’s not the students’ fault, Chris says the blame lies on the design of the learning environment. If you don’t define what they’re learning, you won’t see results.
In addition, if their environment doesn’t provide community, you’re missing a critical step in learning success. Learning does not happen in a vacuum, and social learning, whether it is between the teacher and the student, or the student and fellow students, is crucial.
Chris says that instead of selling great information, you should focus on doing whatever it takes to get a result. Your assignments should teach students how to integrate actions into their reality, and not worry about making mistakes along the way because it is all part of the process.
As a marketer, you need to show the steps that lead to the finish line so that students stay motivated, and back it up by delivering consistent results.
“By making a course so good that the results happen reliably. And this is why its important to have things like the social and the coaching and the one on one the relationship so that its not just the content that carries the user to the result, and your ability to instructionally design the process.”
To keep your students engaged from the start, hook them with tangible results in lesson one, to show them immediately that they are learning what they need to reach their goals.