If we analyze the entire e-Learning market, two critical factors determine the success of an online course business: credibility and visibility.
It is easy to see why. While visibility lends you the attraction and interest of interested learners, credibility earns you the ‘trust’ factor, which is critical in the customer’s decision-making process.
This article will delve deeper into how you can achieve both – but before that, there is something important you should know.
Unravel What Makes You, You.
Here are three steps that will help you determine what sets you apart, and how you can leverage your Unique Selling Proposition (USP) for the success of your online course.
Step #1: Ascertain Your Area Of Expertise
The only competitive advantage that you have over competitors is your unique personality and approach.
Realistically speaking, your area of expertise should relate to something that you have been doing for a number of years, gathering a huge amount of knowledge on the nuances and niche of the subject at large, which is almost impossible for a novice to know.
When searching for online courses, the average person is looking to leverage somebody’s expertise to solve a problem. Address problems that bother people, and try to provide valuable solutions.
Step #2: Determine Your Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
The world of e-learning is a noisy place, with creators uploading content on the daily. Recognizing your USP is critical to ensure your voice gets heard among a sea of others.
It is because this differentiating factor will form the base of your marketing efforts, as visitors will be attracted by your uniqueness and follow you to your website. The hallmark of exemplary value propositions is a content creator’s ability to address and provide a valuable solution to a specific need of the audience.
From the headline on your sales page to the slogan beneath your logo – determining your unique value proposition, and summarizing it in one phrase can lend your online course an unmatchable and recognizable aura.
Step #3: Identify Why Do You Want To Create This Course
There is more to online course creation than to make profits. In essence, you are sharing knowledge gained over a lifetime with students who signs up for your course. Determining your reasoning behind it can help you place your best foot forward. As an online course creator, personal and emotional motivations have a profound impact on the quality of your course.
Once you’ve identified your WHO, WHAT, AND WHY, it’s time to start crafting an actionable plan to increase your credibility and visibility. Here are a few tips to get you started in the right direction:
How To Increase Your Visibility
Visibility is all about capturing the attention of your target audience, creating awareness and telling people you exist!
Here are some tips to increase your brand awareness and attract more people to your online course.
*Take note that gaining visibility for your online course is a continuous and conscientious effort.
Publish Helpful Content
Content creations refer to blogs, videos, and articles that entice users to gain more knowledge from you. The idea behind this strategy is to educate, not on selling your course. If you create helpful and valuable content, people will automatically be attracted to learn more about you and your online course. Creating fresh content frequently will also increase your SERP rank - increasing visibility and leading more people to your website.
A popular tactic is to extract a snippet of the entire course, a bit where you provide an exciting and valuable bit of information to the users and upload it on YouTube, for free. That small portion of the course (approximately 10% of the entire course) will develop an interest in people to flock to the main online course.
Prove Authority In Online Interactions
Online forums such as Quora, Reddit, or LinkedIn provide an excellent chance for online course creators to provide answers to questions related to your topic. Not only does this provide you with an opportunity to pitch your online course (without appearing desperate, please), it also establishes you as an authentic source of answers.
Bolster Your Online Presence and Be Active on Social Media
This is the world of live streaming, webinars, and social media interactions. As your viewership grows, so does your responsibility to maintain engagement with your audience.
You don't need to be on every channel to gain more visibility, start analyzing where your target audience is, and make sure you are active on those channels. You'll gain visibility by frequently posting helpful content and making sure they see it, through hashtags and sharing it on relevant groups.
Smaller interactions, such as replying to comments on your Facebook page and retweeting on your Twitter profile, can go a long way in improving your online visibility as people engage with you.
Read more: Make Your Online Course More Visible
How To Increase Your Credibility
Credibility consists of making people understand your value and trust you. People only wish to learn from authentic and recognized faces – from those who have demonstrated their proficiency in solving problems with the help of their vast skill set and knowledge.
However, it is not always important to hold multiple PhDs to be considered an expert. Personal experiences and personal excerpts on how you overcame adverse situations can also help position you as an expert.
In the world of online courses and e-Learning, being self-taught is actually a positive as it gives your students a relatable mentor who was once starting out, as they are. Here is how you can increase your credibility:
Flaunt Your Accolades and Accomplishments
Have you ever come across the logos of global brands on a business website? Have you observed how personal websites make a point to convey just how many awards someone has won in their industry?
That is because accomplishments and awards lend much-needed credibility to brands, people, organizations, and of course, online course creators!
- Who already trusts you? Mаkе ѕurе you haves testimonial about your work on your sales page, LinkedIn and Facebook page (hopefully with images and video).
- Show case studies and success stories of past or existing customers and show what you did for them.
- Have you been featured in a magazine, interviewed by an influencer or been on a podcast? If yes, great, use that to build trust in your sales page! If not, you should start there. Find a podcast that aligns with your online course topic and pitch yourself for an interview. This will get you connected to new people in your industry, showcase your expertise and, most importantly, give people the chance to get to know—and start trusting you.
Establish Trust With Your Clients - Tell Your Story!
Nothing highlights credibility like having a relationship that is built on trust with your clients. That is why so many people make it a point to highlight client testimonials, and how long they have been in business – because they want to inspire trust. You should follow suit.
Tell people why you created this course, what motivates you, what do you stand for. This will help you connect with your target audience and give them reasons to care. Don’t be afraid to be authentic!
Valuable And Actionable Content
When parting knowledge, your role as an online course creator dictates that you provide relevant and actionable information that they can apply and benefit. Add incentives to your content, such as free booklets or short videos that further flaunt your vast knowledge. In the end, the quality of your content will be your most significant marketing material.
Merely relying on knowledge and expertise is not enough to cut it in an industry as competitive as e-Learning. Online course creators need to leverage these tips to increase the visibility and credibility that could set their online courses up for success.