Considering creating an online course? I can show you how, based on what I learned creating my own over the years, and with worldwide brands like LinkedIn Learning.
The Digital Age demands we keep up with ever-changing programs and apps. To keep current is to stay viable in business. Many of us want to share our expertise and ideas with others, and creating online course has been a very viable platform in the last few years. Here’s five steps to get to get you started!
How to Create and Online Course
1. Begin With Course Ideas
Listen for what your clients and followers ask you. That’s a sure sign you’ve got an opportunity to teach something that will fit the needs of your audience — and that it will be watched. List what you can teach, brainstorming both broad and niche topics.
2. Pick the Best Ideas and Set Goals
Not all ideas will work, so be sure to select one that will be of real value to your audience. For example, we’re sharing this blog in answer to our own following asking for insight into this area.
With your top idea chosen, hone in on your intentions. Define the end-goal for your viewers in terms of take away as well as the feeing you want them to be left with after taking your course. A goal can be something like: Help people use Adobe Express (formerly Adobe Spark) with confidence so they can create social media content on the go. Or, empower Graphic Designers and Illustrators to embrace their creative edge and promote their work with confidence.
3. Plan Your Course Content
A course needs a lot of structure and planning to be simple! Because we’re bombarded with information overload each day, it’s critical to keep each lesson — whether solo or part of a series — short and to the point. Focus on one teachable topic per video. This allows you to make your content easy to grasp. 2–5 minutes are an ideal time to keep users engaged.
A best practice we employ is to have a dedicated notebook or Google doc with the specifics of every chapter, including our scripts. Plus, a list of any graphics or video content we aim to create, and the goals for each, so we can be sure they align with the course’s end goal. This is important not just for organization, but because of how much it helps you stay focused and avoid adding unnecessary information. Remember short, sweet and insightful are key.
4. Practice and Record
Define how you are going to deliver your content. It may be through videos, downloadable sheets, written content, infographics, etc. Videos can be a most effective way to communicate content. Not only because many people are visual learners, but it is so easy for people to see exactly what you’re talking about. Plus it’s an opportunity for them to build a connection with you as a brand or individual.
If don’t feel comfortable on camera, just practice! It will get easier.
Be conscious of your delivery energy — if you don’t sound excited about what you teach, people will quickly disengage. And when recording, pretend you’re talking to a friend. Pause when you feel like you’re going to say “Um,” or “Like” — another reason to keep the content clear and simple. When I started recording videos for courses or going live online I stumbled a lot. But I kept at it and 4 years later, I’m doing courses with LinkedIn Learning. I promise the more you practice the more confident you will become.
5. Promote the Online Course
Congratulations! You did all the hard work and your course is complete. Now you want to make sure that you promote your course so that people can benefit — and leave you powerful testimonials.
Be strategic. Designate set times in your calendar were you will focus on promoting it. Create graphics in advance to use, keeping them direct, easy to read and branded. Make a video short (or a few) of what to expect from your course. Consider enticing or rewarding those who watch the lesson or course with an additional free download from your website.
Since testimonials are the most powerful way to share the value your course provides, ask a select group of people for a review (video or written) before you launch it to the public, so you can share them and pique interest!
Defining, creating, recording your online course is a lot of work! And when you’re trying to promote it, designing the assets for it can seem overwhelming. Don’t worry, we’ve got your back! Check out my course on LinkedIn Learning on Adobe Express. It will teach you the tools you need to feel confident about creating your own content for your brand. It’s a perfect support for creating the graphics you will need to promote your course.
Has this sparked more questions about creating an online course? Ask us in the comments below!