If you're selling to corporate clients, they worry that their people will attend, take lots of notes and even be sincere about taking action, but they will get caught up in everything else that's going on in their job. And it can be worse when you're selling to individuals, because they know how bad they can be at taking action.
One of the ways to address this issue is with an on-line course - that is, a series of e-mails sent to the participants at scheduled intervals, reinforcing the material you taught, reminding them to take action, and rebuilding the bridge between your course and their day-to-day activities.
On-line courses have benefits for your participants, your clients and you. Here's why...
They embed the learning for participants.
When they learn the material for the first time in your workshop, they might understand it in theory. But it's only when they later apply it to their life that they discover whether they really understand it. Most trainers know this, but they usually just leave it to the participants to try out the material later. Some will, but many won't - especially if it's new, daunting or risky (as many actions are!).
However, if they receive an e-mail from you, reminding them to take action, they are far more likely to do so. For those who were willing to take action, the e-mail is a timely prompt to do so. And even those who are unsure might do so anyway, because they see the on-line course as part of the training program.
They add value to your client.
Corporate clients are now expecting more value for their money, and a one-off workshop might no longer be enough. By adding an on-line course that extends the training by weeks - or even months - you increase the perceived value of your training. More importantly, you increase the real value, because you're doing more to help the participants embed the learning.
They help you boost your training fees.
By offering an on-line course as part of your workshop, you increase its value, and so you can justify increasing your fee. Some trainers have added many tens of thousands of dollars each year to their bottom line, simply by adding an on-line course to their existing workshop or seminar.
Even if you don't want to increase your fee, your on-line course becomes a value-added product that demonstrates higher value to your clients.
It can also be an optional extra you can use as a negotiating point when discussing the program with your client.
Best of all, you only have to do the work once - in setting up the on-line course - and then leave it to (inexpensive) software to deliver the course material for you.
Don't ignore the humble on-line course!
On-line courses are delivered by e-mail, which is not the most exciting technology - especially with all the fuss and hype about things like iPhone apps, video, interactive games and Facebook. Don't be distracted by all this hype. By all means, add audio, video, surveys and other stuff to make your course material more engaging. But deliver it all by e-mail, because a person's in-box is still one of the most important places in their work life.