Posted by Harvey Singh | Posted in Featured Article, Instancy Authoring, Mobile Learning, Web 2.0 in Enterprise Learning | Posted on 22-04-2014-05-2008
The internet has provided us with many things, one of which is an online platform where people get ongoing learning. A successful online learning business can provide people with unlimited learning opportunities to expand their knowledge.
There are a number of steps which have been proven to work. Setting up a successful online learning business involves:
a) Creating your web presence
Because your online learning business will be run through the internet, you need to make sure that your online presence is felt. Creating your web presence involves the following:
- Create an attractive and functional learning portal. The portal created should be in line with your business, expertise or your content area. As a business, you want to make your website as attractive and as professional as possible because the same website will be used to market your services.
- Brand your learning portal. Unique branding entails incorporating relevant images, colors, logo and styles to your named portal. This helps to distinguish your portal from the others.
- Create a unique domain name for your web portal. Ideally, the domain name is the same as or a variant of the business name. This makes it easier for users to locate your business.
- First impressions do matter. Therefore, ensure that your website is as attractive as possible. Work with graphic designers and visualizers to style your web page and make it exciting.
- Subscriber growth can only be achieved if you keep your users. Create forms and subscription areas that allow people to sign up. Once visitors have shown interest by signing up, keep them informed. Newsletters are one way of keeping them alerted.
- As you build a list, create a learning eCommerce catalog. The catalog should be directed towards highlighting the value proposition of each of your learning products.
b) Publish a mobile learning App
The mobile user population has immensely grown in the recent past. People are always on their mobile phones exchanging messages and socializing. To build a successful online learning business, you need to tap into this market. This can be done by creating and publishing a mobile learning App.
The content generated should be created through modern content authoring systems which can deliver content seamlessly to all devices. This way, people can easily gain access to your materials.
Make your content easily accessible by allowing your App to be downloaded and used even when the user is offline. Other mobile technologies that can be leveraged include touch and voice based interfaces.
Push technology can come in handy when it comes to educating your learners and ensuring that there is a continuous engagement between the learner and the online learning business.
c) Create your eLearning and blended learning content
Analyze your learners or audience and content and define your learning curriculum and project implementation plan.
Because it’s not easy to create good content for your online learning business, consult an instructional designer to help define learning objectives, storyboard eLearning, audio and video scripts and help you select appropriate graphics and other useful multi-media assets.
Make your eLearning content compelling by adapting a story-telling format, taking a role-playing form or incorporating learning games and simulations. The content can also be made interesting by using videos and audio narrations. Professional voice talent can help you polish audio tracks.
Because the interaction is mostly online, come up with an interactive way of engaging your audience. Engage your audience by creating eLearning content with multimedia elements including video and synchronizing audio to graphics and animated content.
Attach supplemental documents and references to eLearning course modules to support learning objectives.
Assessments can be an important validation that learning has occurred. Therefore, take time to create assessments using different question types such as true/false, essay, single correct, multiple choices, fill-in the blanks, or drag and drop, among others. To further challenge your learners, combine simple online assessments with problem solving scenarios, and simulations with test or games that challenge their thinking and motivate them complete their assignments. Combine eLearning modules and assessments to create seamless eLearning course structures.
Create a schedule for your classroom training session(s) and allow learners to subscribe to the sessions. Set up virtual classroom training sessions where your learners can interact with each other and the experts online and synchronously. That’s just the beginning of creating a blended learning curriculum and courses.
Simply put, blended Learning can be described as a learning program where more than one delivery mode is being used with the objective of optimizing the learning outcome and cost of program delivery. In other words,
Blended Learning focuses on optimizing achievement of learning objectives by applying the “right” learning technologies to match the “right” personal learning style to transfer the “right” skills to the “right” person at the “right” time.
For example, a blending of self-paced and collaborative learning may include review of important literature on a regulatory change or new product followed by a moderated, live, online, peer-to-peer discussion of the material’s application to the learner’s job and customers.
Blending Formal and Informal Learning
Most learning in the workplace occurs in an unstructured form via meetings, hallway conversations, or e-mail. A blended program design may look to actively capture conversations and documents from unstructured learning events into knowledge repositories available on- demand, supporting the way knowledge-workers collaborate and work.
Today, employees and learners are comfortable and familiar with content aggregation systems like Facebook, Wikipedia, Quora, and Google+. An effective learning system will provide similar functionality so that workers and learners can participate in communities of knowledge that span the breadth of the business or organization.
Blended learning content can be generated in many ways. Let your instructional audience, learning objective and content analysis guide your media and learning modality selection – to help create the right blend.
It has been established that blended learning promises better learning results, compared to single modality offerings.
d) Internet marketing
The last step in creating a successful online learning business involves marketing your products. You can market your online learning business using a number of online marketing strategies. They include:
- SEO marketing – Optimizing your site for search engine ranking involves discovering and using the keywords visitors use to find content like yours; knowing the questions they are asking, and making sure your website can answer visitor questions. SEO activities help your site rank well in organic search results.
- Email marketing – this technique helps to generate leads and keep your users informed. You can send your subscribers ads, business requests or even solicit sales. All in all, email marketing helps in building trust, loyalty and brand awareness.
Social media marketing – in this particular strategy, different social media channels are used to generate traffic and create awareness. Social Media marketing uses channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Blogs. Blogs can be used as an online channel to advertise your business and leaning resources and related topics while the other three platforms can be used for posting updates. For a blog to properly relay the intended message, posts should incorporate images, text and valuable links to other blogs or webpages.
Businesses rich in knowledge can capitalize their valuable assets by offering paid training and online learning. Many businesses already own learning content in the form of slide presentations, white papers, and other resources.
Instancy provides an easy-to-use system that can both turn these information assets into online learning courses, and provide a platform to sell and deliver the material to learners all around the world.
Please visit Instancy.com to see our end-to-end platform for creating a successful online learning business, providing an innovative and compelling learning environment, and publishing a mobile learning app.