If you love to stream the latest films as well as the old favourites from your Amazon Prime account, you might have noticed the recent teaser for Good Omens – inspired by the book by Sir Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman – wishing every viewer a good doomsday. Indeed, the team of Amazon Prime has been working closely with Neil Gaiman for a few years now, already bringing American Gods to the screen in the past. It’s easy to understand why: Neil Gaiman is everywhere these days. His social media profiles are filled with photos of places from all around the world, where he gives speeches and takes the liberty of signing some of his books on the shelves of airport bookshops. Because Neil Gaiman is that kind of person; he likes to keep busy and leave a nice surprise for his readers.
That’s precisely because he never stops that he’s recently taken on doing a storytelling masterclass. Students have to sign in – but for £85, you can access all of Gaiman’s material and tips, making the art of writing more accessible to newcomers like you and me. In fact, even if you’ve never been tempted of publishing your stories, you’re likely to change your mind after listening to Gaiman’s soft voice. The masterclass teaser is not only inspiring for amateur writers, but it also makes you want to share your own expertise with others. Indeed, whether you’re a talented accountant who can crack down calculation or a skilful designer who creates engaging imagery, you could let the masterclass inspire you to create your teaching material. After all, if Neil Gaiman can do it, why couldn’t you?
Neil doesn’t need introducing, but you might
The most significant difference between Neil Gaiman and yourself is that one of you doesn’t need an introduction to attract students. The other one has to develop their online presence first! Introducing yourself as an expert can be difficult at first, but it isn’t an impossible task – even without an agent. The best way to ensure your future students that you know what you’re talking about is to build your online presence around your expertise. A blog can let you share tips, best practice anecdotes, and your networking agenda with your readers. Admittedly, it’s fair to say that writing a blog can take a lot of time, especially if you want to get noticed. But there are a few hacks you can use to maximise your presence. The first rule of blogging is to fully and entirely understand your audience group, meaning that you know exactly who reads your blog and how you are helping them. This lets you target your articles. Encourage your readers to come back by keeping your site user-friendly and ad-free – as much as possible – so that nothing interferes with the user experience. Additionally, by responding to current trends and events, you make your knowledge relevant to your readers.
If regular blogging feels like too much dedication, you should consider getting your name out there with an e-book. Indeed, being a published author legitimates your position as an expert. While it’s a lot of work, you can use your book to establish your identity and create a niche market you can target with your future courses.
If you’re making the experts of tomorrow, become a teacher
How much do you want to get involved in creating and teaching your courses? Indeed, you have to consider that Gaiman’s masterclass is using only recorded material, meaning that you can’t get back in touch with your instructor. However, if you’re keen on establishing a connection with your future students, you might want to brush up your teaching skills first – click here to enrol in an education-focused career. Ultimately, teachers are, by definition, experts who pass their knowledge on. If you want to offer educational consultancy courses or even offer your course as part of a university degree, you might find it useful to understand the pedagogical challenges of such a position.
Make yourself available for your students
There is no way around it. If you’re going to teach directly to a group of people, you need to make sure that you remain available for your students. You can create a dedicated mailbox for your students so that you are guaranteed not to miss any query and feedback. It’s a good idea too if you’re teaching within established premises such as a college or a business training building to apply for a personal office – decorate it to suit your tastes and make it less imposing on students by following these tips – where you can receive applicants and learners. You’ll find that students can feel more comfortable in an inviting decor that allies practical and stylish design! Besides, you’ll work better too!
You’re not sure you can stand up in front of a class
While most skills can be taught, it doesn’t mean that all experts would make good teachers. If you’re someone who gets nervous in front of a class, maybe you need to find an alternative to the stand-by-the-board teaching position. Indeed, there are plenty of online teaching materials which could serve as a source of inspiration. Indeed, using dedicated teaching platforms, you can create online courses in a friendly and navigable interface.
Additionally, selling your material online can also add a new branch to your business, as it’s an income-generating product. More importantly, for online courses, your involvement is minimal. You need to set up the course and develop the learning experience, but once you’ve created the material, you can sit back and receive your passive income from its publication.
How to promote your offer
If your course is online or targeted at businesses only, you will need to consider a promotional strategy. Indeed, for experts who act on behalf of a university to fulfil a module, the marketing activities are entrusted to the campus team. For teachers who are not part of an educational institute, you’ll need to maximise your online presence for promotion. Check your social media platforms for other course creators, for instance. Inviting them to ârticipate to your course – for one lesson – can be a smart move, as this lets you both promote your activities to a new audience group. You can also give your followers a special discount to encourage them to sign up.
Understanding why you want to help others
Understanding what you expect from your course is just as crucial as addressing your audience expectations. Indeed, you need to make sure that you fulfil your needs too, whether you want to teach to share your passion for a subject or whether you want to make a difference in people’s lives and careers. Your teaching material should be built to let you get what you want from it too. For instance, if you’re going to make a difference in someone’s career, you need to offer additional mentoring after the course.
Make sure you’re staying relevant
Last, but not least, you might be an expert at the time of the material creation, but your expertise is always questioned and challenged by your field. New experts arise, new problems appear, and the trends change. If you want your material to stay relevant, you have to remain in your field and work with it. As you do, you might have to update your lectures to features the latest market activities. Failure to do so will put your students off.
If Neil Gaiman’s masterclass inspires you to tell your own story and share your expertise with others, you have many options to make your dream come true. From becoming a dedicated and certified teacher to creating online courses, there is a solution for everyone.