4 Ways The Cloud Helps Your Business And Saves You Money

The cloud helps alleviate many IT burdens and complexities that have long plagued businesses. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the ways it eliminates specific costs and meets some important needs associated with employee training.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

5 eLearning Challenges That Trip Up Restaurant Employee Training, And How To Solve Them

In this article, I delve into 5 top challenges restaurant chains encounter when considering eLearning for their employee training. I also explain the practical steps you can take to handle each issue and be on your way to successful restaurant employee training.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

4 Academic Tips To Motivate Your Employees Toward Corporate Training

Need to liven-up the corporate training experience? Sometimes all it takes are a few simple adjustments to make it fun and engaging! The world of academia has so many useful methods to get students engaged and interested in learning content—why not apply the same to corporate training?

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

4 Criteria For Testing Your Online Corporate Training

So you’ve built your corporate training courses and are ready to launch them. But before you go live, there’s still one very important step left: The testing process. This is one of the most important -and often neglected- steps to make the online corporate training experience a success.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

Corporate Training For Millennials: How To Create Bite-Sized Learning

As the methods of corporate training continues to evolve, how do you tailor content to match your employees’ on-the-go lifestyles, while still providing quality content? In this article I explain what microlearning is, who it benefits and what to include in bite-sized lessons when creating corporate training for Millennials, the new generation of employees.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

6 Essential Features In An Online Corporate Training Platform – And Why You Can’t Afford To Compromise

The platform you choose can either make or break your employees’ corporate training experience. In this article I list out key features that can help make your online corporate training program a success.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

5 Reasons To Look For Moodle Alternatives

In this article I share my experience of using Moodle and the price I paid before ultimately realizing my need for Moodle alternatives. I hope this write up encourages you not to settle with a traditional Learning Management System and its set of limitations. There is more out there.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

A Proven Model For Selling Online Courses

How To Sell Your Online Courses: A Proven Model 

For the past 10 years I have taught instructors, trainers, and small businesses how to launch online academies and sell courses. In this article, you will be given steps to generate traffic to your academy’s website, build trust with your learners, and ultimately sell courses.

Traffic | Trust | Sell

Traffic 

Maybe you already know which groups of people will benefit from your course. The question is, where are they and how do you begin a conversation?

Step 1: Contribute to an online community.

When you think about it, community and relationship is kind of like the chicken or the egg: Which came first? What we do know is that community builds upon relationship and the best way to cultivate a relationship is to have consistent interaction.

With today’s social media platforms, there are many ways to engage with others.

  • LinkedIn. 
    • Pulsehttp://linkedin.com/pulse
      Pulse provides the space for people to write, share their articles, and get likes and responses. It’s a great way to start or join in on a conversation!
    • Groups: http://linkedin.com/directory/groups
      Groups allows you to interact with specific types of professionals that share your same interests.
  • Google +. 
    • Communitieshttp://plus.google.com/communities
      All you need is a Google+ profile. Go to the communities link above, find a community that is relevant to your content, and start sharing!
  • Reddit. 
    • Subredditshttps://www.reddit.com/subreddits/
      Reddit acts like a virtual bulletin board where you can share, connect with others, and facilitate discussions that matter to you.
  • Facebook. 
  • Quora. 
    • Communityhttp://www.quora.com
      Quora is a community of people in need of answers. Choose a question on a topic you know about and submit an answer with a link to your product.
  • Growth Hackers.
    • Posthttp://growthhackers.com
      It’s a forum for growth hacking and marketing. See what’s trending or start a trend yourself!
  • Product Hunt. 
    • Posthttp://www.producthunt.com
      Tech, games, apps and more! This is the place to join in the chitter-chatter on the newest tech products out there.

Step 2: Post a video on YouTube and link to your course.

YouTube is the second largest search engine and a powerful means for product promotion. Start by uploading a short video that introduces your course or post one of your recent webinars. Remember, the key to driving traffic to your video is to include a keyword that your audience is searching for within the title. With an estimated 300 hours of video added to YouTube every minute and 4 billion video views per day, you must create a specific title and description in order for people to find it. Don’t forget to include a link to your course in the video description and tag relevant topics your audience cares about.

Step 3: Find out what learners are searching for and what your competitors are promoting.

To learn more about a product or service, a person will likely google it and view the top results. In order for your course to rank high in a search engine, you will need to use the same keywords your target audience uses.

Another way to position yourself in the market is to identify the keywords your competitors use and what they are promoting through social media.

  • Buzzsumo. 
    In buzzsumo.com’s search box, type the domain name of your competitor and find out what they are promoting. Alternatively, type in a keyword related to your course and find out what social channel most prominently promotes that content.
  • Tweetreports. 
    Tweetreports lets you find out ahead of time when specific Twitter chats will be taking place. These chats are conversations scheduled in real time to give users a chance to contribute their thoughts and resources relevant to a particular topic.

Step 4: Bundle your course with a deals website.

Everyone loves a good discount. A price cut often leads to larger purchases and helps sellers tap into large audiences that would be otherwise unreachable.

Here are a few of the top deals sites you could consider posting your course. To leverage them effectively, bundle a few items together and sell them for a discounted rate.

Step 5: Create an email signature and add a link to your course.

Like most working professionals, you probably experience the daily barrage of emails. With so many messages to sift through, it’s important to make sure the ones you send aren’t instinctively trashed before being read.

While there are many marketing tips on this, one step I highly encourage is to create an email signature. A signature adds a touch of professionalism and credibility; a point of reference for who you are and what you do. This is also an excellent opportunity to work in the link to your course!

Here is what my email signature looks like:

--
Ridvan Aliu

CEO

EDUonGo, Inc.    |  EM: ridvan@eduongo.com  |   PH: 1-800-955-8363   |   WEB: www.eduongo.com

Check out my recent article, "A Proven Model For Selling Online Courses"
--

Here are some helpful video tutorials that demonstrate how to create email signatures:

Step 6: Send an email to your current community.

If you have taught an online course before, make sure to touch base with former students by sending them a mass email announcing your new course.

Remember, these are individuals of a community you have previously engaged with. If they have benefited from your other content, they are more likely to sign up again.

Former students already know the value of your content and are more likely to pay for your next offering.

Here is an email sample you can refer to: https://goo.gl/SfVZaV

Trust 

Building trust is an essential part of generating traffic. It will keep visitors on your site long enough to read through your content. The goal is for them to subscribe to your newsfeed, register for a free course and eventually pay for the course you are selling.

Step 7: Install Google Analytics - THIS IS A MUST.

Google analytics enables you to get the data you need to make intelligent marketing and business decisions for your company.

Find out the bounce rate on your web pages; for instance, a bounce rate above 30% (which is relatively high) indicates you need to revise the content of the webpage.

I facilitate a self paced online course with materials gathered from Google Academy; it helps people understand how the platform collects, transforms, and organizes data in Analytics. You can check in out here: www.goo.gl/BKfDvP.

Step 8: Integrate Sumome - Another MUST.

Sumome provides intuitive apps to help you build trust with your audience. Below I have listed some apps I use as well as how I use them.

  • List Builder. 
    List Builder converts one time visitors into faithful readers and subscribers. As they leave your website, a window will pop up asking for their email.
  • Content Analytics.
    If you blog, you likely have no idea of how little or how much content your visitors read. With Content Analytics, however, you can see exactly where your readers stop reading.
  • Smart Bar. 
    Smart Bar sits at the top of your webpage to remind visitors to sign up for your mailing list.

Step 9: Hold weekly open hours (AKA webinars).

Set aside one or two open hours every week to talk to your website visitors. You can use Google Hangout, Skype conference, or any similar tool.

A live online event like this will facilitate more personal interaction with your visitors and strengthen the credibility of your brand.

To organize and keep track of these events, Sumome offers a dialog box feature, where participants can RSVP to your next open hours.

Sell

Once you are generating traffic and interacting with visitors, you can focus on setting a price for your course. The question is, how much do you charge?

If you already have a price in mind, ask yourself whether you would pay that much for the course. If you would, charge accordingly.

Connected with this is the final step that can help you hit a homerun.

Step 10: Build a brilliant landing page.

The look of your landing page is key in convincing visitors to register and pay for the course.

I could write another article just on the topic of the landing page. What I will highlight are a few tools that can help you create an attractive presentation page:

  • Course Video Intro.
    Spend as much time as it takes to create a quality introductory video to your course. Using something as simple as your smartphone to record yourself as well as screen recording can do the job. Here is a sample: http://goo.gl/Ci9fQS
    Personally, I like to use Camtasia from Techsmith to do screen recording and editing.
  • Course Description.
    Write a short and sweet description about your course. You don’t have to make it long if you are including a video intro.
  • Curriculum Outline.
    Users want to know what they will be paying for. Give them the curriculum outline and mention any media material you will be providing as downloadable inside the course.
  • Testimonials.
    Display testimonials of what people are saying about the course and you. It’s a way to show that others have indeed benefited.
  • Your Biography.
    Write about your passion and highlight your achievements. Write a lot. You want people to feel like they know you, which helps you to gain their trust and inclination to pay for the course.

That’s it. You have reached the end of the 10 step model to help you sell a course.

But before we bid adieu, there is one last thing you need to know. Following these steps will only yield the desired results IF you add this one essential ingredient: Repetition.

If something works, do it again and again. Repeatedly doing what works will generate more revenue. Eventually, you can hire others who can do the repeating for you. And before you know it, you are running an online school.

Speaking of online schools, I actually created a tool that helps anyone the launch their own online school. You can check it out at www.eduongo.com.

Here is a video that explains how to get started with EDUonGo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yH2DCHyGNw

I would love to hear your feedback. Please feel free to leave a comment!

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.

Can Your LMS Do This? 8 Questions You Need To Answer

Can Your LMS Do This?

Most LMSs on today’s market are not comprehensively designed to meet emerging eLearning needs. So, before you decide on using an LMS to implement your eLearning solution, ask yourself the following questions.

  1. Can the LMS provide different learning experiences for different students?
    Have you heard about Personalized Learning? Today’s students expect unique learning experiences that are tailored to them. You need a system that has the flexibility to generate diverse learning experiences. The system provides the tools to create a variety of layouts, flows, interactive activities and mobile access that are uniquely beneficial to each student group.
  2. Can teachers make changes quickly and easily?
    When suggestions for site improvement start rolling in from students, making adjustments should be quick and easy. Your system should be easy-to-use and  provide the resources you need to implement changes and site improvements quickly. It is important that most changes can be made by teachers/instructors, not just IT experts.
  3. Can the LMS integrate with 3rd parties like Google Drive or Office 365?
    Since there is no one software that meets all of our needs  yet, we need to integrate third-party applications. This is why your eLearning system needs to support third-party integration. While standards like LTI or SCORM are a good start, systems that let you integrate Google Drive and Microsoft Office have an added advantage. Also, if you want to sell courses online, it doesn't hurt to have the option of an integrated payment process.
  4. Does the system allow teachers and students to collaborate online?
    Online communication and collaboration is no longer an option in learning. It is very important that your learning system allows students to chat in real time, enable instructors to conduct live video sessions with students, and have a forum for ongoing dialogue in the class.
  5. Does the system provide data analytics?
    Effective use of data can have a huge impact on the learning outcome. Your LMS should collect and generate data reports to indicate student progress, helping you to determine ways to improve your students’ learning experience. While basic data reports are useful to a certain point, the ideal LMS should be able to generate custom reports that reveal specific data and collect the type of data you are interested in. Also, student privacy is a top priority and sufficient security and privacy should be provided for the collected data.
  6. Can the LMS be customized to follow company branding?
    Branding is important to any business and this is also true for both education and training. Your learning system can sustain your brand by allowing you to blend the same unique presentation of your materials into the look and feel of your courses. Additionally, you will have full control over your site’s functionality and administration. It should also offer white label and URL customization.
  7. Is the LMS localization ready?
    Internet has made it possible for anyone to work globally now. Many companies need to provide trainings in multiple languages. You should plan for that too.  Your system should let you localize to different markets, so that you can reach more than one region. In addition to translating text into various languages, localization allows editing to layout of texts, numbers, time formats and even color in some cases.
  8. Does the LMS have the capability to scale globally?
    If you are going to offer your course to the world, your LMS needs to have the capacity to scale to the world. Your learning system should have the capability of supporting large numbers of students and to scale globally. Students should be able to efficiently and reliably access their courses anywhere at anytime. Your learning system will achieve this through solid cloud infrastructure.

This post was first published on eLearning Industry.