Alex Genadinik is a software engineer turned online entrepreneur extraordinaire. Alex is an author with 20 business books on Amazon and an instructor who has made multiple courses on Marketing And Networking University. Alex also has a large YouTube channel with over 2,000,000 views. He is also a business coach. He has coached over 1,000 aspiring entrepreneurs. Alex’s current interests include cryptocurrency. He is dabbling with Bitcoin investing and offers discounts on his products when people pay with Bitcoin. Alex holds a B.S in Computer Science from San Jose State University. On his free time, Alex likes playing soccer, going to theater and comedy shows and working. Yes, he works on his free time. He hustles all the time.
How to Create a Great Online Course
Most people have something great that they can teach and share with the world. But let’s face it, most people are not good teachers. Teaching online is even harder than to teach in person because to teach online you must master AV (audio visual) issues such as microphones and sound quality, lighting effects, cameras and video editing. To make matters even more difficult, presentation flaws can feel amplified on camera. And if all that is not enough, real-life students will usually endure the whole lesson before leaving, but online students can close their browser tab as soon as they get bored, and never come back to your course again. It has taken me years to get better at all these things and to be honest, I am still nowhere as good as I’d like to be in many of these.
I’ve been coaching many new online e-learning entrepreneurs through my business coaching practice. For most online instructors, creating courses is a long and difficult process.
Let me clarify. Creating courses is easy. Creating good courses is difficult. And creating great courses requires great effort. If you want to start an elearning business and sell courses from your own website, sometimes it is much easier just to license the courses via a PLR (private white label) model. Licensing the courses instead of creating them will save you weeks if not months of time, and you will be able to start your business the same day you license it. But I digress. Let’s get back to how to create great courses.
Besides all the technical and presentation aspects of the course, what makes a truly great course is that it helps the students with some kind of transformation. Before taking the course, they might not be able to accomplish something, but if after taking the course they are able to accomplish that thing, you’ve made their life better, and your course has helped your students achieve some goal. That may be the single most important part of a great course.
The goals of your students is something you should think about during the planning of your course before you’ve begun filming any of it. Your course topic must help your potential students reach some big goals. If it doesn’t, it won’t be attractive for them to seek out or buy.
You must get in the mind of your students and think about what they need and want in life, whether you can truly help them get there, and whether you can make a good course helping them achieve their goal. If the answer to all these questions is a yes, you must also consider the true market for this type of course. Is there enough demand for your course topic? If there is, it is a very positive sign.
Before creating their course, almost all instructors wonder how much money they can make. The truth is that it is very hard to tell. It depends on how the e-course comes out and how much effort you will put into marketing. Some e-learning courses on a given topic make a million dollars and some courses on that same topic make under a hundred dollars. The difference is in the quality of how the course comes out and how well you promote it.
The good news for your potential revenue is that some of your courses may be turned into books. I’ve turned 20 of my online courses into business and marketing books. If you like writing, you can just recreate your course and write out the content instead of filming it. If you don’t particularly enjoy writing, you can have freelancers transcribe your course and an editor edit the transcription and turn it into a book that you can then go sell on Amazon as a paperback or Kindle.
Once you planned out your course (and possibly an accompanying book), before creating it, you should plan where you will sell them. You have a few options. You can sell from your own website or marketplaces. Marketplaces take a portion of the revenue, but they do a huge part of the marketing for you, and bring you many new customers that you would not have had otherwise. I love selling from marketplaces, but many people want to have full control of their sales process. I’ll share one example to illustrate this dynamic. I have one long-time client who sells a grout cleaning product. He was adamant about only selling on his website for a long time, but after I convinced him to put his products on Amazon, he started earning thousands of extra dollars there each month. Of course, it isn’t all great. Amazon takes a percentage of the revenue and he can’t control many things like shipping prices. Nevertheless, my grout cleaning client probably has the best of both worlds because he is able to sell from his website and Amazon – the biggest store in the world. Another thing I’m trying to convince this client is to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment, but he is slow on that too.
Lastly, once you’ve planned out your course and its marketing, don’t fall into the common pitfall of over planning. Begin filming your course early. If you don’t like how some parts of the course come out, you can always re-film them. But getting into the habit of filming e-courses daily will give you the momentum you need to get to the finish line and launch your first course. Once you have momentum and begin seeing some success, you will make your second, third, tenth and maybe eventually even your 100th course.