I’ve had the pleasure of working with several clients who develop and present online training. My job has been to take a look at their programs with a fresh set of eyes either before they launch, or afterwards, and present my assessment and suggestions. I truly enjoy this work as it is stimulating both in content and in intellectual challenge.
One thing I found to be consistent across these clients is the question of whether or not they were targeting the right people with the right program. Sometimes the audience was perfect, but the content missed the mark. Other times the content was solid, but they were marketing to the wrong audience.
One of my clients specialized in transitioning senior executives from the corporate world into their own consulting practices. He had developed a webinar series on where to find clients and how to build a successful business infrastructure. His marketing was directed at senior executives who were looking for a change and he had a number of people register for his training.
Yet the clients were not satisfied with the training. Why? Because, these were people who were currently employed and who did not know what to do in advance of their transition. For example, most of them were used to having support teams (like admin, IT, accounting) always available to them. When they left their positions, suddenly they had to go out and find that support fast or spend their valuable time doing it themselves. Neither was an optimal solution.
What my client did was develop an additional webinar series that suggested things to do, like lining up admin, IT and accounting contractors, before his clients left their organizations for the world of entrepreneurship. Once he made ‘what to do before you leave’ part of his training, his client satisfaction, and client retention, went up. He had the right audience and his content was right for the audience.
In addition, my client changed up his marketing to specifically target executives who had already left the corporate world, but who were experiencing difficulties running their businesses because they were not fully prepared to be the boss. He used language that hit the pain points of leaving a fully structured and staffed organization for the wild world of lean and nimble entrepreneurship. He tweaked his existing content a little and repurposed it for a different audience. Again, his client satisfaction went up as did his retention. He had hit that marketing sweet spot of delivering the right content to the right audience.
Who is your perfect audience? Have you spent the time to clearly identify who they are, what their pain points are and what you can do to help eliminate their pain?
Also, given your current client base (or the audience you’d like to develop), what is it that they actually need in terms of content? Is what you’re currently delivering (or developing), meeting that mark or are you a little off base?
This is the time when you ask for help, a fresh set of eyes. When you’ve developed your own content, often you’re too close to it to have an impartial view of its effectiveness. Find someone who is seriously competent in your field, who has strong business sense and who will tell you the truth. Then listen to what they say and decide whether or not you will make the suggested tweaks or revamps.
When you take the time to carefully and thoughtfully identify your ideal audience for your content and the ideal content for you audience, you will improve your odds of success.
Cass Mullane’s calm, comfortable approach consistently yields positive results for clients. Her business and personal coaching practice, www.ProsperCreatively.com, specializes in delivering solid left brain business skills to right brainers and creatives in a fun, visual way. She’s a best selling author, a contemporary abstract artist and creator of the Cool Stuff Jar™ Retreats.You can also visit Cass on Facebook!