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Creating an Action Plan

Now that you have a framework of what you are going to teach and to whom, it’s time to craft an action plan.  In this step you will:

  • Set your first year instructor goals
  • Decide how frequently you will publish courses
  • Outline the topic for each course
  • Map out an entire year’s worth of courses
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First Year Goals

What do you want to accomplish your first year in business?  As you decide upon your goals, I want you to focus on the things you can control only.

For example, you may want to make an extra $1,000 a month but that really isn’t in your control.  You can’t make people purchase your courses.

Instead I want you to focus on what you can control.  You can create 10 courses this year.  You can send a weekly announcement to your students promoting your courses.  You can put on a monthly webinar or host office hours.  These things are in your control.

So as you set your goals, focus on items that would produce value for your students and that are reasonably within your control.   If you are creating value and consistently marketing your courses, the students will come.

The goals you will create will later shape your action plan and your marketing plan.  Download this goal-setting guide to help you wrap your brain around the goals you want to set.

 

Goal Setting Guide

This guide will help you set goals that are within your control for your first year as an instructor.  You will focus on content and marketing.  Be sure to take your time with this step as your Action Plan and your Marketing Plan will be based on the goals you set now.

Download it here!

Refining Your Course Creation Goals

In order to get a really good handle on how many courses you are going to create in this first year, you need to know how much time it will take you to create a course.  This comes from experience.

However, you need a place to start.  I created a Course Development Guide to help you estimate how much time it will take you to create each course.  As you start building courses, you will want to use a time to track how long it actually takes you to do each task so that you can refine your time estimates.

Then you can sharpen your course plan and add or subtract courses.

Some of the course tasks you will need to complete for each course are:

  • Script writing
  • Slide development
  • Course graphics
  • Recording
  • Editing
  • Uploading
  • Course description
  • Marketing materials

Again, this guide will list all the typical steps.  You will want to add and delete tasks that are specific to your course development.

Download the Guide below

Outlining a Year's Worth of Topics

In the step above, you determined how many courses you plan to publish this year.  The next step is to outline what topics you will teach.  You already have a pretty good list but now we need to plug them into a calendar and make sure they flow.

You will want to consider seasonality and flow.

Seasonality

What topics will be popular based on the time of the year?  If you are teaching a topic like organization, there will be a higher demand in January and April than at other times of the year.  If you are teaching cleaning, you will find a high demand in spring.

Flow

You will also want to think about how one course will prepare students to take another course.  Planning a series of courses is a great way to build your business.  You can think in terms of beginner, intermediate and advanced levels or in terms of related courses.

For example, if you were teaching about meal planning.  You could create a course about planning healthy, quick breakfasts.  Your second course could be health brown bag lunches.  Your third course could be dinners in 30 minutes or less.  See how a student who loved one course would be interested in taking the next one?

 

To help you come up with ideas, I have created a Course Planning Guide.  This guide will take you through seasonal and series planning strategies.  I have listed high-demand topics for each month plus given you ideas how far out you should create this content so that it is ready for high season.

There is also a Part II in the guide that focuses on series creation and how to keep students involved for an entire year.  Download the guide and use it to map out your entire first year of courses.

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How will people find out about your great courses?

Now that you an Action Plan, it’s time to develop your Marketing Plan.

Read on here.