So, What’s Your Problem?

NMEU Presentation Online Courses Workshop John Colley.009

 

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When it comes down to it, we are all selfish!  Yes, I am sorry but its true.  Particularly when we are online.

What we always want to know is “What’s In It For Me?” – otherwise known by the acronym, WIFFM.

When you are planning your online course – this question has to be top and centre of your topic selection criteria. You must consider what the student is going to get out of the course.

One of the best ways to make sure you do this is to concentrate on Problems and Pain.

They say that Pain sells – if you can “cure” the pain or solve the problem, the student will buy your course.

Do not offer Prevention – that is not enough of a need for the student to want to buy, they will be much more focussed on what is causing them pain right NOW!

Focusing on Pains and Problems has another benefit for you as the instructor.  It forces you to focus on specific topics and niches within your subject area.  While students like to get value for money, with a few exceptions (mostly in the technology category), all singing and all dancing courses are not the way forward.

I know, I have tried that.

I have created general courses introducing topics of which I am still very proud, but they are not commercial.

Who wants a general introduction to Mergers and Acquisitions? 

No, I don’t see a forest of hands shooting up either.

If your course starts with a title “Introduction to…” you know you have missed the mark. 

If, on the other hand, you start “How to…” or “Six Ways to…” you are focusing on an issue and addressing a pain or a problem.

We need to be clear about the difference between “wants” and “needs”.  Often a student will “want” a solution to a problem which they have identified but they are less able to identify “needs”.

To know what you need, you must have a clear understanding of what is missing.  If you do not know what you do not know, this is difficult to do.

Step in the online course instructor.

It is your role to deliver the “needs” while also addressing the “wants”.  You sell them on the benefits of addressing what they “want” while at the same time making sure that your course delivers what they “need” as well.

If you do not do this, the student will not really solve their problem and will go away dissatisfied.

On the other hand, if you do address both “wants” and “needs”, your student will sit back at the end of the course realising that their problem has been addressed and they will realise that they have discovered new information which they did not have before.

How do you find out about “Pains” and “Problems”?  Easy.

Listen to your audience.

What are they asking you?

What questions are they posting in Facebook Groups, in Google Plus Communities and in Sub Reddits? 

Have you checked Quora out to find out what questions are being asked about your topic? 

Listen to your audience and then create the solutions they are seeking.

This series of posts is all about answering the question, “How can I be successful on Udemy?”  “How can I be successful creating online courses?”  Finding the pain point and creating an online course to address it is the way forward.

If you do this once, they will come back for more and this makes creating clusters of courses and cross selling them an easy way to get repeat business.  But we are getting ahead of ourselves.

In the next section, I will share with you how you turn this Pain/Problem -> Solution approach into Objectives.

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