What is EDUpreneurship and why it’s killing traditional sales methods
What is Edupreneurship and How To Be an Edupreneur
Speial notice: From 11th-15th July, my best-selling book “EDUPRENEUR: How To Monestise Your Expertise and Profitably Educate Your Market” is FREE on Kindle. Note that the hard copy version is not included in the special promotion – it is only the Kindle version that is free.
Get it FREE in Amazon Kindle store Australia HERE.
Get it FREE in Amazon Kindle store US HERE.
Get it FREE in Amazon Kindle store UK HERE.
Watch my vidcast on ‘What is an Edupreneur’: HERE
EDUpreneur’s are the new Entrepreneurs – here’s why
We are in the midst of a learning revolution which is having a dramatic knock-on effect on entrepreneurs, experts and business owners – specifically, how they build an audience and sell their products and services.
Our customers are fed up with being sold to, having promises made to them and sitting through endless sales pitches.
Instead, they are hungrier than ever to know why and how things are done – and are only buying from those who provide them with the answers to their questions.
They are only following those who demonstrate their expertise by providing information and education on their topic – those who are Edupreneurs.
It’s BIG business and Edupreneurs will prosper
It’s no secret that the online learning industry is already a multi-billion dollar industry; and according to research by Global Industry Analytics, the online learning industry is set to be valued at a whooping $325 BILLION by 2025.
Moving from ‘entrepreneur’ to ‘EDUpreneur‘ is how business owners of all kinds can ride that wave to their advantage.
The Shift from Entrepreneur to EDUpreneur is Here
The business owners stubbornly sticking to old school sales and failing to educate their market, are already getting left behind and closing up shop forever as their competitors are jumping to the top of their customers Google searches and gaining fans, followers and buyers as a result.
It’s time to shift our way of thinking about obtaining and retaining business; time to shift how we provide information to markets – from self-promotion to people-development.
It’s time to shift how we sell and deliver our products and services to our customers, and shift how we nurture marketplace relationships.
We have moved from the traditional entrepreneurial methods of sales and marketing, to using the platform of education as a way to nurture everyone and everything around us, at the same time as our bottom lines.
If you are ready to shift into the new way of doing business, it’s time to become an EDUpreneur.
Goodbye traditional sales
Once upon a time, it was he who shouted loudest that made the most sales; but gone are the days of the toe-curling ‘buy my stuff’ marketing techniques. The only action this method attracts from prospective customers today is the ‘block’ button – something that every business owner and expert wants to avoid at all costs!
In recent years, we have witnessed a tidal shift into a new era of attraction marketing – and it’s called ‘Edupreneurship‘.
Edupreneurship has an increasingly large variety of definitions, but I define it as ‘profitably educating your marketplace‘ – and it’s a technique that I believe all businesses should be using in every industry if they want to survive and remain relevant to the knowledge-hungry modern day consumer.
What is Edupreneurship? What is an Edupreneur?
There are many definitions of edupreneurship out there, but this is mine:
Sarah Cordiner’s definition of ‘Edupreneurship’:
Edupreneurship is profitably educating your market.
It’s an income-generating business activity that has been strategically intertwined with education for the purposes of sustainable change at a social and economic level. (Sarah Cordiner)
Edupreneurship or being an Edupreneur can include having an education-based business, providing educational products and services; or it can be a method used to engage an audience or following in any industry, using the platform of education.
What is the difference between an entrepreneur and an EDUpreneur?
What does that mean for you?
Well, here is what most marketers and business owners forget – what clients want, is answers to their questions.
If you are answering their questions, you are the solution to their problems; and therefore the number 1 choice to provide them with products and services that you have already demonstrated that you are an expert in providing.
What are the benefits of being an Edupreneur?
Education is transformational by nature.
It is all about enabling the learner to move from one place, to another.
But ask any edupreneur or educator why they teach, and you’ll find that the money is something that always comes after ‘because it is so rewarding’.
When you start to see how much your expertise is valued by others, you too begin to value yourself in ways you never knew were possible; and that is true self-actualisation.
Here are some other reasons why becoming an edupreneur can lead to personal transformation:
- The process of discovery of the fact that you have so much to give to others provides solid reinforcement of your skills and knowledge. This increases your self-efficacy, confidence and motivation to keep learning to keep sharing and the snowball of returns in the form of business and personal transformation just keeps getting bigger.
- The research and information gathering process around being an edupreneur can be very refreshing. We often are only consciously aware of around 5% of what we know. By conducting our research phase we become re-conscious of the other 95% of information we already have. This can be a big boost on self-esteem and enthusiasm for your topic as you begin to become more certain of your expert label.
- The monumental satisfaction you will experience at the end of creating an online course, when intangible knowledge suddenly manifests into a tangible product or financial outcome – holding that workbook, learner manual or course folder; or watching the dollars roll in from your online school is such a good feeling.
- Consolidating all of your knowledge into a tangible product often shows you that you are more ‘expert’ and capable than your may have realised. Teaching can then become quite addictive. So many course creators that I have worked with came to me with a dream to just create one single course. But the motivation that they were left with after one single ‘topic download session’ showed them that there was far more to their potential than just one course; and later have gone on to create entire online academies full of courses – which later turned into best-selling books, keynote presentations and much more. Those people are completely different people to the ones that first worked with me in every single way. I have seen firsthand people, their lives and their business completely transform in front of my eyes through the process of course creation and edupreneurship.
No More Selling. Ever.
In business, why do so many professionals expect their potential customers to pay them high-end fees without first demonstrating they capability to the prospective buyers?
SHOWING people that you have the skills and knowledge that you say you do will get you far more business than any traditional marketing campaign ever could.
By sharing what you know and what you can do in an educational manner – the very act of demonstrating, giving and explaining, people are able to convince themselves that you ARE an expert through the very act of experiencing your expertise.
There is no need to promise, persuade, convince or sell anymore.
Instead, produce useful, helpful content in the form of blogs, articles, videos, live streams, online courses, short challenges, image cards, webinars, podcasts, books and eBooks and allow your education to sell you instead.
Authority Positioning & Solidifying Your Industry Credibility
By demonstrating your expertise in the form of educational content, you are proving your industry ‘street-cred’.
As soon as I had published work (Online Courses, Books, eBooks and Articles), conference organisers began approaching me to speak at their events; podcasters wanted to interview me on their podcasts; corporates wanted me to train their staff; universities and colleges wanted me to train their teachers, and clients started pouring through MY door, instead of me having to knock on theirs.
By sharing your expertise in all of these forms, you are providing upfront, undeniable evidence that you are an expert in your field. And that expert status rapidly shifts you into a position of an authority – a well known leader in your industry – when you have published that expertise consistently, over a period of time in multiple, educational formats.
Leave a Legacy
Creating courses and other expertise-sharing products, are great ways to make a difference to people in a way that ensures you’ll always be remembered for the way that you positively contributed to the world.
By documenting and sharing your strategies for achieving a certain outcome, overcoming a particular situation or giving people an insight, you leave behind valuable information about life today, and also impact on people beyond the reach of your immediate physical presence.
Contribute to the body of knowledge in your industry
By sharing your expertise with the world, you are not just helping those who learn from you, but you are also contributing to the body of knowledge within an entire industry.
In a data sharing world, everything is quickly consumed, encoded, decoded and regurgitated in some way through the filters of translation, scaffolding and synthesisation of those who consumed it. This is how evolution and innovation happen.
By simply putting your content out there, you are contributing to the evolutionary development of an industry and leaving your own little legacy in the world.
Positively change people’s lives
It goes without saying that when you help someone feel better, do better, gain a new skill, be able to think, behave or synthesise knowledge in a new way, that they are quite literally changed as a result.
It doesn’t have to be dramatic – simply be the help to others that you wish you’d had when you first started on your journey.
By sharing what you know with someone else, you are able to change who they are and what they can do, ultimately changing their lives.
Gain a global client base
There are over 4 billion internet users out there and many of them are looking for content that you currently have locked up in your head.
The very nature of the internet allows anyone, from anywhere, to access a global market.
With the right course titles and descriptions, your courses can be found without you even having to advertise them. Going online means going global. Instantly.
Earn passive income
A practice whereby you have money deposited into your bank account without emitting physical effort to enable the transaction, is true passive income. Creating your own online course is a great way to set yourself to earn a passive income.
However, you have to create your course in the first place, and ongoing marketing requires effort- but once it’s created and online, the world can find it and buy it without you having to be involved in the transaction.
Students enroll themselves, pay online and start taking the content – all without your input.
The online world enables us to automate so many traditionally time consuming activities, to the point where entire businesses (especially online courses) can now be run with the use of some smart apps, tools and software; bringing income into our bank accounts without having to be sat near our computer at all.
In a world where income is capped if you’re only exchanging time for money, it is vital to maximise your exposure and scalability – which means getting in front of larger groups, multiple platforms of exposure and going online.
Learning programs and products give you the opportunity for making a much greater and far-reaching impact to you and your target audience.
The more educational products you have out there, the more exposure you get; and this generates public awareness about your business, products and services.
Scalable business model
Creating online courses enables you to take on thousands of new students daily without you having to hire staff or significantly increase your workload or resources.
With online courses, there is no limit to how many learners could enroll on your training.
The added benefit is that more students doesn’t necessarily mean more work in the world of online learning either.
The more courses you produce, the more students you will attract, the higher your monthly income will be from one off payments and subscriptions to your online school alike.
Your customer base gets bigger, your income gets higher and your work load remains low.
Any income starts with getting ‘leads’ (potential customers).
The very nature of educating your market with blogs, books, ebooks, online courses, videos and more attracts people who are interested in your product, simply by them hitting the internet with a question that your content had the answer to.
If they are interested in the free content, then the chances are that they will be interested in the paid content too.
With this in mind you can add tracking pixels into your blogs and online schools now so that you can capture the data of your readers and watchers and directly target them in future advertising.
If you are reaching more people, you are attracting more prospective customers.
Statistically, the more prospects you have, the higher your chances are of increasing your sales.
If you have tied this in with the scalability of online learning, then your income potential is now limitless.
Not only do your online courses become new income streams in their own right, but the other products and services you have an offer can be connected to your courses in the form of upsells, earning you more business.
Relationship and rapport building
We’ve all heard the advice that to be successful, we need to make sure that our audience know, like and trust us.
By creating helpful videos, especially ‘talking head’ videos, your audience get to soak in your knowledge, develop a huge amount of gratitude and trust in you for it, and feel like they get to know you via the transmission of your personality and character in your videos.
When you’re providing education, your audience engages, interacts and communicates with you. This builds long term relationships, followers and fans; which ultimately leads to sustainable business.
Increased sales of ancillary products and services
Although you can very easily make good money from your online courses, they are not necessarily what will make you rich on their own.
How to be an Edupreneur
The key to succeeding as a well-known and well-liked edupreneur, is quite simply to be helpful on purpose.
When it comes to maximising the reach and impact of our online courses, books, workshops, consultancy, professional speaking – and other edu-products and services, the first step is knowing what our customers want.
Specifically, what questions they have.
What queries and curiosities they want answers to and information about.
As soon as you know this, you can immediately strategically position yourself as your target audience’s oracle in your topic by simply answering them all in every medium possible.
So focus on providing answers first, and your product or service second.
Whenever a customer is hovering their finger over that ‘Search’ box in Google, they are very often about to type in a ‘How to‘ question.
How do I get…’
How to make…’
How do I achieve…’
How to be…..’
How to have….’
How to do….’
How to avoid….’
How to stop….’
What are your audience’s ‘how to’ questions?
All businesses and experts in any industry ultimately provide solutions to their customers in some form or another – and that makes every single one of us an ‘educator’.
All you have to do is collect the most commonly asked questions your audience have before they buy a product or service like yours, write them all down, then answer them in the form of blogs and videos. (I show you the best ways to find real data on exactly what your audience are searching for in my online course “How To Create Profitable Online Courses”)
All of a sudden, Google is working for YOU, and your customers are discovering you without you ever having to spend a single cent on paid advertising again.
If you are answering their questions, you are the solution to their problems, and whatever you have, they are now highly likely to buy – after all, you’ve already helped them and they haven’t even ‘formally’ engaged with your business yet. (We’ve all heard of that ‘reciprocation’ concept right?!).
Secondly, by the very act of answering your target audience’s questions and educating them about your topic, you are physically demonstrating your capability and expertise right in front of their eyes, building immediate trust and credibility – the total opposite of traditional sales and marketing which merely ‘promises’ that you know your stuff.
With me so far?
The concept of Edupreneurship, coined by Sarah Cordiner, is this:
By strategically educating our marketplace on our niche topic of expertise, and being ‘helpful’ on purpose, we automatically position our brand as the expert and go-to resource when our audience have needs in this space.
You no longer have to sell to your customers – they now come to you.
How to be an Edupreneur – Just be helpful on purpose
Conduct some basic research to find out what questions your audience are asking on your topic.
I show you exactly how to get this data in my online course “How To Create Profitable Online Courses”, but here are just a couple of strategies below to get you started:
- First list down your keywords – these are words that your audience might be using to find answers about your topic (take my online course to find out how to get this data)
- Then go to forums such as Facebook, Quora and Reddit and conduct a search for those words. On Facebook, use the search function both on your main homepage AND inside of the Facebook groups that your target audience are members of
- Create a document with all of the questions you can find on your topic that you can answer and collate all your answers in your Q&A resource
- Then create multiple pieces of content answering each question – and here is my favorite methodology:
- answer the (how to) question as a livestream on Facebook
- download the livestream as an MP4 and upload it to YouTube, ensuring the title is ‘how to…’
- transcribe the MP4 and create a social media post
- take snippets of the transcription and create helpful ‘Top Tip’ image cards
- turn the transcription into a ‘how to’ blog post
- adapt the blog post into a guest blog article to put in front of other peoples audiences
Once you have done of your keyword research and forum searching, then, put all of your answers together and create an online course, or even a free mini course or mini challenge. For example, I have a FREE 5 Day ‘Create Your Course Plan’ Challenge which helps people who want to create an online course, to get their first online course outline planned out.
Once you start teaching people how to do everything that they want to learn how to do, you’ll be amazed at how (counterintuitively) you will suddenly be inundated with people asking you if you can ‘do it for them’ – ie provide a service; which of course you can set at a much higher price to your online courses.
Pricing Your Online Courses:
Ironically, I have found that the more I give (either for free publically, in my Facebook group for Edupeneurs, or inside my online courses which hold nothing back), the more the demand for my ‘done for you’ services increase, even though the free content AND courses taught them how to do everything for themselves.
This is because seeing how much goes into the processes of your services actually makes your customers appreciate your work and justifies the costs of those services – it’s rather a spectacular phenomenon and a must-use strategy for any type of business.
Once you have created as much question-answering content as you possibly can, plop them all into a social media auto-posting tool, such as Buffer.com and watch your engagement and followers rise as that content then works for you for the rest of time.
How to auto-post all of your social media content using Buffer:
Thus, goodbye to ‘selling’ – NOBODY gets annoyed with someone who is always being helpful. And, goodbye ‘block’ button – an ‘edupreneur‘ experiences plenty of likes, fans, followers and sales; and that my friends is very good for business indeed.
This in turn provides further opportunity for your business, your brand and of course, all of the people that you are helping in the process of sharing your expertise.
Learn how to turn your knowledge, expertise and hobbies into profitable online courses in my online course: “How To Create Profitable Online Courses”
If you are ready to become an Edupreneur, join the Edupreneur Academy today – and get your first 30 days for FREE!
DON’T FORGET! From 11th-15th July, my best-selling book “EDUPRENEUR: How To Monestise Your Expertise and Profitably Educate Your Market” is FREE on Kindle. Note that the hard copy version is not included in the special promotion – it is only the Kindle version that is free.
Get it FREE in Amazon Kindle store Australia HERE.
Get it FREE in Amazon Kindle store US HERE.
Get it FREE in Amazon Kindle store UK HERE.
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