5 Common Mistakes Of Online Course Creators And How To Overcome Them

5 Common Mistakes Of Online Course Creators And How To Overcome Them
Summary: We live in the age of knowledge work and information-based economy. Skills and knowledge are just as marketable today as any physical goods – probably more so. The good thing about it is that there are hardly any people out there who don’t have some knowledge that would be valuable for others.

Mistakes Of Online Course Creators: Ways To Overcome Those

The knowledge that can be taught for profit. Online courses make it easier than ever and are an excellent source of passive income, but only if done correctly. Unfortunately, many first-timers make mistakes and fail, which deters them from trying again; in this article, we will cover some of the mistakes of online course creators so that you don’t have to learn from your own experience how bad they can be.

1. Selling Before Having A Finished Product

Some course creators suggest that you should start selling your course not just before you’ve finished it, but even before you've started creating it. It can help you get more sales, gather momentum, and maintain the urgency in your work, but usually, it is a poor idea. Firstly, course creation is creative work, and creative projects very rarely turn out exactly the same as you’ve envisioned the, to begin with. You can come to a conclusion mid-work that there is a much more exciting direction you can try out. You can find out that you are incapable of producing enough useful content for a full course on your chosen topic. Dozens of things can go wrong, and your buyers won’t be amused if they end up getting a course that is different from what they’ve been promised.

So make it your rule to create first, sell later.

2. Not Paying Attention To Your Audience

Online courses are time-consuming and costly to produce. If you create a course nobody is interested in, you’ve wasted your time and money. Yet you will be amazed at how many course creators make courses simply because they thought they had a wonderful idea, without pausing to consider if there is an audience for it.

Thus, before you start working, find a topic your audience wants to know more about. Reader surveys are an excellent way of doing it: simply ask your direct audience questions about what they would like to hear and in what form. This will help you know them better and find a surefire topic.

3. Putting Too Much Into A Single Course

If you take a look at most of the existing courses on reputable online study resources, you will see that the absolute majority of them are dedicated to narrow topics. They don’t try to teach you everything there is to know about a particular field of knowledge, they decide upon their purpose and don’t steer away from it. If you don’t do the same, you risk two things: firstly, to write a course that will cover everything but will be inch-deep (i.e., won’t mention anything that your students won’t be able to find in public sources); and secondly, to cause information overload in your students. They will finish your course feeling overwhelmed rather than excited about the new knowledge (link).

So choose your topic wisely. Don’t steer away from it. Avoid including anything that is not essential. Leave some space for further courses.

4. Dividing Your Course Into Huge Chunks

Modern online courses are all about bite-sized content. We live in the age of mobile devices and ever-shrinking attention spans, which means that 40-minute long videos detailing the theory just don’t cut it anymore. Many people don’t have dedicated long periods of time for learning – they take their courses over short periods, during 5-10 minute-long breaks (when commuting, going for a walk, standing in line, etc.). Thus, you should divide your course into bite-sized segments that can be consumed on the go.

5. Requiring Too Much Commitment

Most people either cannot afford to commit 10 weeks to gain a new skill (because they have too many other responsibilities) or are in too much of a hurry to do so. They prefer micro-courses that offer an absolute minimum of theory and maximum of practice. Offer them a fast way of mastering useful skills without delving too much into non-essential stuff. You can always create a more in-depth course for those who want more.

We hope that these tips will be enough for you to avoid many of the common first-time mistakes and make your successful first step into the world of online course creation!