5 ways to elevate student engagement

How many times have you signed up for an online program because you were excited, but then had the disappointing “meh” experience when you started digging in?

Perhaps the content was good, but the delivery was a bore.

Perhaps the course itself was great, but there was no support in the practical application of the knowledge.

Or perhaps the whole program was just one big, fat sales pitch, leading you into their premium offering.

Most course creators have the best of intentions.

They figure, “I’ve got this important thing to share, so I’m going to build an online course.”.

So they go out and find a course that teaches course creation.

The big problem is that most of these courses put the vast majority of the focus on how to market and sell a course. The actual process of creating the course tends to be an afterthought.

This is great if you already have a course and need to learn how to spread the word and inspire people to purchase.

But most aspiring course creators don’t know how to create engaging and transformational learning experiences.

If you are in the elearning industry, the most vital thing to focus on is crafting truly effective courses.

Without an effective and engaging course, you have nothing worthy of selling. Sure you might makes some sales, but it won’t be sustainable.

Asking the right questions is the key.

At eCourse Adventures, we tend to focus on questions like:

  • How can we make this better?
  • How can we make this way more engaging?
  • How can we inspire more people to take action?
  • Would we be motivated to do this lesson, or does it need to be improved?
  • What challenges can we come up with that will make our students want to show up and do the work?
  • How can we make this lesson a work of art?
  • How can we support people to breakthrough their resistance and fears?

We’re not making 7-figures with our biz (yet), but we do believe we’re creating our very best work.

There’s a lot of 6-figure this and that out there. And it’s a lot of BS.

The key to creating a 6 figure course isnt taking a course called “6 figure courses”.

The key to creating a 6 figure course is to create something that is truly effective and changes peoples lives.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be a big priority in our industry right now.

We’re not taking shortcuts in the name of profit.

We believe that if we keep focusing on serving our students and innovating the eLearning industry, the money will take care of itself.

The online learning industry seems ass backwards from our angle.

It’s insane that people actually buy and sell $2,000 powerpoint presentations. I guess thats just the result of tricky marketing. But it won’t last.

We don’t care how good the information is. It’s still just information.

If you’re just selling a library of videos and some PDFs, and leaving everything else up to your students, then you’ve missed the point.

Your job as a course creator is to facilitate transformation.

People aren’t buying your videos, they are buying your guidance. Your facilitation.

Once people get a taste of what a deeply transformative course can be like, things are going to change… Big time.

This is a lot of rantyness, I know.

We’ve just gotta make our point. The way things are being done is not working and people are losing faith in the online learning industry because of all the times they’ve been let down by a course or teacher.

We need to step up our game.

We need to get more creative.

We need to be better leaders.


Here are 5 ways we are increasing our student engagement

  1. We apply themes to all of our courses. Have you ever been to a themed party? They are the most fun because it creates a completely different environment, vibe and experience. Themes can do the same for your course.For example, the Great eCourse Adventure is about an epic journey up a mountain to the peak of Launch Summit. Why a mountain? Because building a captivating eCourse (or any creative endeavor) is like climbing a mountain. It can be hard, it is rewarding, at times you’ll want to give up, you may get lost along the way, but damn is it ever awesome when you get to the top! When you give your course a theme, you invite your students into a world that you created just for them. It takes them from their reality bubble into a new one, which is essential for transformation to happen.If you want to learn more about themes, check out this article and watch our Masterclass. 
  2. We gamify the whole experience, making it so people are excited to take their next step. As we’ve been learning, to do gamification properly, we must understand human motivations. It’s not about badges like most think it is.It is about understanding your student’s needs, desires, fears and motivations for going through your course. It’s about understanding where they’re likely to come up against resistance in the process you’re creating for them. It’s about making the learning/transformation journey enjoyable.We have a ton of great articles and resources on gamification at our blog, as well as in our Masterclass. Not learning and applying gamification to your course is a really dumb move. Just saying…
  3. We build our course around the community experience and vibe. Having a private group on Facebook is not enough to make people excited to stick around, share their process, ask questions and participate in your community.It is the culture that makes people never want to leave. So in order to create a ‘stay-worthy’ community experience, which will amplify your course 1000%, you need to ask yourself, “What is the culture I want to grow around my community and course? What are the kinds of people I want to be serving? What are our shared values and beliefs? What do we all stand for that we can do better together BECAUSE of my course and this community I’ve created?When you develop a culture, your community will start to take care of itself and your students will be so excited to be a part of it. People love being a part of something that’s bigger than them. For the GEA, we’re developing a culture of innovative, creative course creators who love adventure and are committed to the long-game of learning, growing, transforming their own lives and bringing forth their very best work in the digital world. Oh and did I mention, we all love to have fun!Here is a podcast we did about growing community, plus we dig into it in our Masterclass. 
  4. We show up and serve our students, rather than sitting up on our teacher pedestals. The era of the expert is coming to a close. At least in our community it is. We don’t want to be these perfect demigods who have everything figured out. We are students of life. We are students of our own work and philosophies. Because of this, our students excuse our imperfections.You know how many refunds we’ve given in the last two years? TWO! Both of them were because the people thought we were going to build their whole course for them.We are committed to being life-long learners. When we are committed to the path of learning, we create space for experimentation, making mistakes and trying things that have never been done. That’s how we built the Great eCourse Adventure. Everything we tried had never been done or proven to work. But that’s what makes it so magical and powerful. We then share our discoveries with everyone in the community and they share their’s as well. It’s beautiful and circular, rather than hierarchal.
  5. We’re constantly aiming to improve and create more value. Everyone gets into building courses because they think they just have to create the course, launch it and the money will come pouring in. That’s not how things work though deary.Once you launch, that’s the beginning. From there, you need to focus on improving the experience, listening to your students and finding innovative, creative ways to improve everything. If you commit to creating the greatest possible eCourse you can, then the excitement from your students will be the thing that draws more students to your offering.Serve those who are in front of you, rather than tirelessly trying to rope more people into your course. That’s how you get referrals. Word of mouth is and always will trump scammy sales funnels!

The bottom line is this: take your time and create courses that truly work for your students first and your bank account second.

Because if it’s not truly effective, you may be able to use gimmicky marketing to sell it, but the success wont last.

Instead, be patient, get creative and enjoy the process.

We’d love to hear your top takeaways from this article. Share down below!

And if you want our support with bringing out your very best work, then come try the Great eCourse Adventure. Your first 14-days are free and then it’s just $35/month. Give it a try, we think you’ll love it.

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