18 critical things you need before you create your online course

Love to create your own online course? Here are 18 critical things you need first – from online course expert Sarah Cordiner.

Online course creators dedicate their lives to helping others grow and progress in their chosen areas of expertise. But, to create truly engaging, transformational and profitable online courses, it’s important that online course creators realize that they too have a little professional development to do if they want to stay on top of their game.

The online learning industry is now a billion-dollar industry worldwide and according to Forbes magazine, it’s actually set to double over the coming years.

This means that if you’re not tapping into this market, you are missing out not only on a considerable pay packet, a fantastic opportunity to expose your business and your credibility to your market but also on the opportunity to make a positive impact to those you reach.

Creating a course can build your authority AND your income

Creating online courses is by far the most effective way of marketing your business and to get your audience to pay you AND to thank you for it in the process.

As a specialist curriculum developer (aka course creator), my clients often come to me asking: “We want to create profitable courses. How do you do it?”

The people asking this question are the people who have realised that sharing their knowledge and expertise is the most profitable form of marketing, authority building and lead generating activity a business can be doing right now.

Turning your knowledge and your information services into profitable products that cannot only help you get your message out there, get more exposed of your business and yourself and create yourself the position as an authority within your industry but also importantly to create a passive income for yourself in the meantime.

What if you’re not a natural ‘educator’?

It’s important to know that you don’t have to be a training provider or have training as your primary products and services to really benefit from the online learning marketplace.

It doesn’t matter whether you sell lawnmowers, consulting services or build websites for a living. So long as you have some expertise in your own area of specialisation, you can be growing your business profitably using the platform of education. All you need is an idea!

But, before you start teaching others what you know, first you may have a little learning to do yourself.

Although you are an expert in your own field of expertise, remember that curriculum design is a qualified profession in it’s own right, and therefore you should make sure that you have taken the time to learn the fundamentals before you dive in and waste your precious time making course creation mistakes.

18 critical things you need before you create your online course

Here are 18 critical things you need to add to your own professional development list and learn before you start creating your online course:

  1. How to choose the right online learning platform – the differences between the major platforms, their various pros and cons and what the essential features are of a good online course platform.
  2. A clear idea of the audience you’re creating your course for.
  3. Knowledge of the different types of information and educational products you can create.
  4. How to determine if your course idea will be profitable.
  5. The fundamental principles of adult learning so that you can ensure your course is engaging and transformational for the adult learner.
  6. How to ensure your course meets different learning styles, modes and preferences so that everyone enjoys your course.
  7. What your online or offline course sales funnel will look like.
  8. How to ‘package’ your educational products and services from a pricing point of view, to offer greater value and make more sales by having a wider range of options.
  9. How to price your courses.
  10. How to design courses that transform your students lives.
  11. What the essential pre-assessment and research steps are before you start developing your course.
  12. Where and how to conduct your market research to ensure you build the perfect course.
  13. How to structure, organise and lay out your course framework.
  14. How to create compelling and magnetic learning outcomes that reflect the true value of your course and attract all your perfect students.
  15. The steps for creating and ordering the perfect course content that will have the greatest positive impact on your students learning experience.
  16. What equipment, filming gear and editing software you need to create professional looking online courses yourself.
  17. Teaching, training and presentation delivery skills.
  18. How to market, promote and sell your online courses.

Yep, it’s a LOT to take in! That’s why it’s good to get help to get started. After all, you may be an expert in your subject, but you’re not yet an expert at creating brilliant, sellable online courses.

After 10 years of being in this industry, and being post-graduate qualified in teacher training and curriculum design, Sarah Cordiner has created a suite of online courses tailored specifically for online course creators that include ALL of the above essential learning criteria and more.

Photo by Nick Morrison