7 Tactics To Grow Your Training Business Faster, Smarter, And More Profitably

7 Tactics To Grow Your Training Business Faster, Smarter, And More Profitably
Summary: If you’re looking for ways to put your online learning products in the top spot, this article is for you.

How To Grow Your Training Business: 7 Tactics That Will Put Your Digital Training Products In The Top Spot

Here is how to grow your training business not only faster, but also smarter!

eBook Release: Get a free eBook on How To Grow Your Training Business, by Elucidat
eBook Release
Get a free eBook on How To Grow Your Training Business, by Elucidat
This free eBook explores how winning training providers are growing faster and smarter!

1. Tap Into And Target Real Needs

User needs is the ultimate sweet spot. Hit these, and you’re onto a winner. If a business leader says they want better productivity or more efficient managers, dig deeper to uncover what the real problems and blockers are that currently stand in the way. The best way to uncover problems is to ask your target audience.


  • Digital surveys, interviews, observations and polls, alongside some action-mapping techniques.

Capture Audience Needs

The first stage of the 5C Framework for successful digital learning (Capture, Conceptualize, Create, Cultivate, Commercialize) helps you to understand your audience, undertake needs analysis, and get clarity on what success looks like. This can be used from a strategic level, right through to a specific piece of learning.

Note that finding out whatever holds users back from success in their roles does not mean they should receive reams of “learning” content on the matter. See the next tip for ideas!

2. Provide Quick-Fixes (Alongside Deep Learning)

In the quick-win world we live in, we expect to find immediate answers to problems. We also don’t need to remember everything – especially for tasks that we do infrequently or that are low-risk. We can go back and revisit some previously tagged content, or just look it up. Sometimes, we just need a template – a tool or a guide to use there and then. Job done.

Of course, not all learning matters can be dealt with in this quick-fix way. Learning complex or technical skills and building longer-term capabilities and behaviors need a deeper level of engagement and commitment from learners.

Leadership training, for example, needs to bring about personal awareness of current ways of thinking and behaving, and then help individuals shift opinions, behaviors and habits into ways that help them perform at their best. Compliance training is all about challenging and changing small, daily habits into ones that don’t put employees or their companies at risk. Both need something that engages, challenges, surprises and, especially in the case of leadership, stretches us.

Chances are, in the fantastic array of content you have, you can serve both of these needs. They work splendidly together.

Performance Support Resources  Development Experiences 
  • Infographics and ‘how to’ diagrams
  • Short videos: Expert guides, dos and don’ts, top tips
  • Case studies and examples
  • 5-10 top questions to ask/ways to do X/tips about Y
  • Crowd-sourced tips; use a polling question that asks people, “What most helps you do X?” then share results, live
  • Downloadable on-the-job tools and templates
  • FAQs, which again you can crowd source via online surveys and user feedback dialogues
  • Reflective diagnostics and profiling tools
  • Simulations and practice scenarios
  • Challenges that evaluate against different scoring mechanisms
  • Social challenges: Case studies coupled with live opinion polls
  • Stories, documentaries, and exploration or research activities
  • Online discussions and debates
  • Existing videos, coupled with reflective questions
  • Online coaching
  • Group or solo activities done or uploaded online
  • Social polls on key matters

3. Keep Users Interested Beyond Seven Seconds

The average learner gives content just seven seconds to decide if it has their attention.” (Profile of a Modern Learner – Elucidat infographic)

Your audiences have high expectations when it comes to digital content: It needs to be overtly relevant, useful and/or capture their attention straight away.

A top way to gain traction with users is, of course, to provide something they need. But even within a specific digital resource, it doesn’t need to be one-size-fits-all. With the right choice of authoring tool, you can set up your content to adapt to individual needs and serve up an ultimately relevant user experience that keeps them hooked in beyond those all important seven seconds.


  • Dropping in a question or simple interaction early on, subtly filtering the next piece of content users see.
  • Converting paper-based questionnaires to digital action-plans and diagnostic tools; capture answers and user-inputted notes, and serve up personalized reports with targeted advice just for them.

4. Incentivize Users To Come Back For More, And More

Got users interested, but need them to keep them coming back for more?


  • Leaderboards, badges, certificates, peer comparisons (social polls), marketing campaigns, follow-up tips, reminders of their action-plan targets, success stories, most popular/most used resources so far.

5. Remain At The Heart Of Users’ Long-Term Learning

If you’ve followed the tips above, chances are you’re already center frame for your audience’s learning journeys. But to get the best results for your customers’ business KPIs, you need to keep driving learners forward. Get inspiration from the likes of FitBit and Duolingo.

Microlearning is on the up and up with leading online training providers. Where microlearning can have the edge over simpler resource-based approaches is by applying some structure, shape or journey to how learners use the short learning “bites.” Clustering together connected content – which learners can still work through in a non-linear fashion – and spreading it out over time means that learners (and their employees) can benefit from spaced practice. This tends to result in better, longerterm performance improvements.

Incentives, such as badges, are crucial in helping motivate learners to keep learning and improving – but it’s also important the journey is personal. If a learner completes a challenge, give them the next, harder one with related resources to help them.

From Microlearning To #BigLearning

Microlearning has taken the digital learning world by storm. But microlearning isn’t the same thing over and over again; it’s different modalities of interaction to keep people hooked and engaged in ongoing learning. For microlearning to be successful, each segment needs to be considered as part of the broader ecosystem, which the modern learner dips into at the point of need.

We call this #BigLearning.


  • Grouping content into clusters and levels, building in spaced practice and challenges that get incrementally harder.
  • Using badges to reward completion of challenges and then whole levels.
  • Adding “related topics” links to the end of each topic.
  • Being flexible and enabling learners to access content that may have belonged to another course previously.

6. Get Users Talking About Your Products (And Learning Together)

Nothing beats engagement like involvement. The most successful digital content takes on a life of its own online, and spreads organically through likes, shares, discussions, and online comments. If your portal or LMS doesn’t have these viral sharing capabilities built in, consider how else you can get learners talking about and engaging socially with the content.


  • Social polling activities, leader boards, discussion forums, virtual classroom sessions, live online coaching sessions.

Also consider how to bring learners’ or customers’ voices, tips and examples into your product. Collaborative tools enable you to let anyone create and comment on content and, of course, seek input, opinions and ratings from end-users. Could you run competitions or provide rewards for the best sales conversation video?

7. Use Data To Refine And Increase Your Success

Imagine you’re an online training provider with potential customers all around the world, and you have something your competitors don’t. You know the average time customers spend learning online, what devices they use, their engagement with different question types – and that videos with polls do better than videos without. You also know that Japan, France, the U.S., and Singapore engage with online content more than other places. Gold dust, right?

With the right choice of online authoring tool, you can have data feeds right at your fingertips that tell you all of this and more. And what does that mean? You can create products that just get better and better. More targeted, more cutting-edge, more honed to your users.


  • Cloud-based authoring tools with in-built analytics feeds, LMS partners with sound data stores.

Related articles:

1. How To Grow Your Training Business Faster: Increasing Your Speed To Market

2. 5 Common Authoring Technology Issues That Limit Your Ability To Scale

3. Going Digital: How To Grow Your Training Business

4. Free eBook: How To Grow Your Training Business Faster, Smarter, And More Profitably