Education is clearly one of the most important endeavors of humanity. How we educate children, youth, and adults is of paramount importance. In the coming Age of Intelligence the disruption of the workplace will be unprecedented. This will make lifelong learning, on-going training, and constant re-education more important than ever.
If you’ve ever considered writing a book, designing an online course — or developing any product that relates to conveying knowledge outside a classroom, there is no better time to do so than right now.
There are many reasons people shy away from writing a book or getting their online course out into the world. It’s not easy. Curating content for a course is time-consuming and rigorous. Writing a book is even more difficult. Even if you are an expert in your field, you may not have the time or inclination to sit down and write consistently and productively, for months at a time. More importantly, you may not feel you are a skilful enough writer, and your schedule may not allow for one more passion project.
All of this is “figureoutable” as marketing mogul Marie Forleo maintains. You can hire a ghostwriter or book coach, or get help with the curation of content for your online course. However, there are other pieces of the puzzle to consider — and they are the ones no one thinks about very often. Here are a few, below:
1. What is your niche market?
Who follows you on social media? Why do your clients hire you? What is your greatest strength? Who or what do you want to attract in the future (and it’s not only about the money)? What is the relationship between what you have to offer and the “pain points” you are addressing with your course or book?
2. Produce a book or online course that supports what you practice — teach or preach.
The impetus behind your book has to marry with the wisdom of your message. Make sure the book or course is a fit with your core ideas or lessons in your current work – or what you aspire to do in the future. The beautiful thing about books and online education is that they enhance your brand and convey credibility. After doing PR for over 20 years, we can tell you that the first question we are asked when pitching the media is, “ Do they have a book?” A book is a potent calling card. A course contributes to future business, passive income, and acts as an adjunct to what you currently offer in services. Both of these assets open the door to a new future that can include speaking engagements, guest column opportunities, television spots, cross-promotions/collaborations and of course, new clients. We’ve seen it happen, time and time again.
3. Create a marketing plan and follow it.
When your project is close to completion, take the time to consider when the time is right to launch it. Think about the release of your project and how it relates to events or seasons, and how these elements affect your target audience. Where will your reader or customer see what you have to offer? On Instagram, Facebook or TikTok? Maybe your particular market would be more likely to see your message in a prestigious publication or trade magazine, TV show or podcast. If you have the budget, invest in some PR and social media marketing to get the word out. If that’s not in the cards, start planning how you will promote it yourself at least six months ahead. Keep in mind that you must create synergies between your project and other platforms — and possible collaborations with others — to enhance sales. The book (or course) will not sell itself, trust me on this. You may be bitterly disappointed if you do not make a plan for marketing and distribution — but that’s the subject for another post!