So you want to create an online course. That's great! But what should it be about? This can be a tough question to answer, but don't worry - we're here to help. In this guide, we will discuss strategies that can help you decide what online course you're qualified to make. We'll also give you some tips on how to find a topic your students will love for your online course.
First, Look Inward - What Is Your Ideal Online Course?
Online course creation is not exceptionally challenging these days. Software like Hyax makes it easy to create a course and monetize it in the ways you want.
So, you probably don't need to limit yourself on the side of technology. We've got a guide on creating online courses when you're ready to take the plunge.
Rather, start thinking about what online course you'd like to make if there we no constraints.
Now, it may not be the course you ultimately create, but let your mind explore the possibilities. The only boundaries in this step of the course creation process are your experience and skills.
Think about these questions:
- What do you know well enough that you would be confident teaching it to others?
- Are there any topics that you would be excited to discuss for hours?
- Do you have any certifications, degrees, or other documentation attesting to your expertise?
These questions will help you form ideas about the course topic you're already well suited to create. That doesn't mean you have to stick to any of these, think of them as the foundation on which you'll build the rest of your strategy.
Next Look Out - What is The Most Successful Online Course You Can Create?
So you have a list of potential topics - great! The next thing you need to do is research what's already out there.
This will help you understand what courses are selling, what the demand looks like, and what type of content is resonating with students.
It will also give you an idea of how much competition there is for each topic. To get started, head over to Google and type in "online courses" + your topic. For example, "online courses cooking".
You can also try looking on sites like Udemy and Coursera to see what types of courses are being offered. Once you have a good understanding of the landscape, it's time to start thinking about how you can in with what's already available.
To make your course a success, you'll have to focus on things that people want to learn.
And the only way to really know that is to ask them. You'll need to do some market research tests and find out what your prospective students are already interested in.
It's important to not get discouraged if you find an online course curriculum similar to the one you're contemplating.
There is always a way to make your course stand out by targeting a specific market niche.
For instance, there are many courses on design, just try searching for 'graphic design course' on Google. But, try searching for 'graphic design courses for older adults'. Suddenly your competition got a whole lot smaller.
Market Research For Online Course Creators
Assuming you've made it this far, you have a general topic in mind and some idea of what the competition looks like. The next step is to do some more specific market research to determine if there's an audience for your course and what they're willing to pay for it.
There are many different ways to do this, but one effective method is with surveys. You can use tools like Survey Monkey or Google Forms to create a quick survey and send it out to your target market. This will give you valuable feedback about what people want to learn, what format they would prefer (video, text, etc.), and how much they're willing to spend on learning from you.
If you're having trouble getting respondents for your surveys about your course material, you're not alone. And, you should be prepared to invest some time and money in this regard.
The most straightforward way to get people to take your survey is to use your social media channels. But that's assuming you already have a substantial following.
If you don't already have thriving social media accounts, you could rely on ads to send traffic to your posts.
Alternatively, you could buy survey responses. There are many services you can use that provide survey responses for a fee. It's the most expensive option but also the one that will give you the fastest data.
Another great way to get information about potential students is through social media groups.
There are groups for just about everything on Facebook, LinkedIn, and other platforms. Search for relevant groups and see what people are talking about. This will give you some great insights into what people want to learn and what they consider valuable information.
Create a Hypothetical Online Course Outline
With the information you have, you should be able to form a pretty accurate framework for a course that, both, suits your abilities and could be successful.
Remember, the key is to focus on what people want to learn and what they're willing to pay for. With that in mind, create an outline for your course.
Your outline should include:
- The topics you'll cover
- How many hours of content there will be
- What type of format it will be in (video, text, audio)
- Who your target market is
- What their needs are
- How your course will solve their problem(s)
If you can answer all of these questions, then you're well on your way to creating a successful online course. Just remember to always put the needs of your students first.
Successful Online Courses Change People For the Better
Perhaps the most important question in deciding what you should create an online course about is whether or not it will make a positive impact.
Sure, you can make a profitable online course about a topic that you're not too excited about. It has happened before.
But it will be extremely challenging to go the distance and truly create a long-term online business with your course if you don't think that it matters to your students.
Selling online courses is one of the first hurdles you'll have to overcome. Eventually, you'll also have to start thinking about creating online courses that make people's lives better. Online courses that are not only profitable but are also a long-term success.
Whenever you have trouble deciding your course creation journey, ask yourself this:
How will this change my student's life for the better?
What Online Course Will You Create?
So, how do you go about creating your own online course? It’s not as daunting as it may seem.
Just start by figuring out what you’re good at, then do some research on the competition. Once you have a better idea of what kind of course you want to create, reach out to your students and ask them what they want to learn.
Finally, think about what you hope to accomplish with the course and get started!
Have you ever created an online course? What tips would you add?