Investing in courses as a blogger is quite difficult. Sometimes you really want to invest in someone’s course or idea, but it’s not right for you at the moment. How do you decide if you really need/want to invest in a course or if you are just afraid of FOMO (fear of missing out?) Learning and doing is an important part of growing yourself as a blogger and as a person. Today on the blog I am going to discuss how to determine whether to invest in a course or not.
1. Ask Yourself: What Do You Need?
We ALL want to support our favorite bloggers, but sometimes what they offer isn't what you need. You need to assess your needs so that you can get the most out of your future investments.
- What are you lacking in your blog or business right now?
- Is there something you were already planning on working on?
- Is there something in your business that has been working well, but you want to know how to capitalize on it?
For example, I took Melyssa Griffin's Pinfinite Growth course because I was interested in Pinterest. I had about 1,000 followers on Pinterest this time last year, and I wanted to learn how to capitalize on that. I saw what Pinterest could do to my page views because I had a post that wasn't my favorite go mini-viral on Pinterest for a couple of days. I wanted to find a system that could help me keep that momentum going (but for posts I actually liked to get page views from.) Taking Melyssa Griffin's course on Pinterest has helped me grow my Pinterest to higher numbers than I ever thought possible and by default helps me bring more eyes to my blog every day.
2. Attend Free Training/Read Blog Posts
Before I invest in any course I have to attend the webinars and free trainings someone provides. If I don't like their webinar style there is a chance I won't like their teaching style. Furthermore if I feel like they spend more time pitching than providing content or if I feel like the content didn't live up to the hype around a product I will probably decide not to buy a course. I have a strict budget as a graduate student so I have to make sure the investment is sound. If they pour their heart and soul into long trainings and great workshops, chances are they are a great person to invest in. If you feel like their trainings are just a necessary step to them to pitching their products, maybe you want to look elsewhere for who you invest in.
Not every teaching style will work for everyone. You may not like a long, in-depth free training. You may feel more comfortable with a short 30 minute session and a couple of minutes of pitching in a free webinar. The purpose of attending the free training is to see how their teaching style will mesh with yours so you can understand if this is the teacher you want to invest in.
3. Analyze Your Budget
The next thing you must look at is your budget. Course investments can take up some serious $$$$. You want to make sure that you have the money to afford the course up front or through the payment plan. How long will this be a payment obligation for you?
The most recent course investment I made required a three month investment from me because I bought the course on a payment plan. Before I jumped at the chance I had to think about when my paychecks would be coming and what money I had to give up from each of those paychecks. That took a few moments to consider and plan out. You need to plan out your decisions and make sure that more than anything they make sense financially.
For college students some months are financially drier than others. Make sure you are accurately pinpointing your financial stamina before you make the decision to go all in on a course.
4. Analyze The Layout Of The Course/Value Given By The Course
In this section we are going to talk about bang for the buck value. What does this course offer you? Normally, when you are on a course landing page the course creator will let you see a preview of each module and what they entail. Read through each of the module titles to see if this is an actual course you feel would provide value for you. Ask yourself the following questions:
- How would you rate yourself in knowledge of this topic? You may already know a couple of the basics on a topic, if you feel the course would be too advanced or too slow paced for you, you might opt to pass on the course.
- How many modules are in the course? Size doesn't always matter, but if we are talking about course content and value it could potentially play a role.
- How is the course delivered? Video trumps words in perceived value. Is the teacher taking the time to create actionable videos for you to enjoy as you take the course? This is a really important thing to understand.
- How available will the course teacher be? Courses can be self-study or super integrated. Will the course teacher be readily available for you as you learn about the course topics? If so that definitely adds a layer of value since you will have so much access to them.
- How many freebies or bonuses will be available if you buy right now and what are those bonuses? Often times during launches course creators will add freebies to the course when they are selling the course. If you adore the freebies and consider them something you need to have, then I would consider buying the course.
5. Make A Decision
With all or some of these things in mind, it's time to make a decision on whether or not the course is right for you. A course that is right for me, may not be right for everyone. We all have different budgets, learning styles, needs, and wants when it comes to our blogs/businesses. You may not have to analyze or think about each and every one of the topics we talked about on this blog today. Or you may have to consider every single thing like a checklist.
One thing I will say about courses is: don't always try to get the cheapest course or the cheapest content. Bang for the buck IS NOT always synonymous with the cheapest course. It's about the results you will be able to achieve with the course so don't be afraid to invest every once and a while.
In today's world you can learn from so many people, but not all courses are worth your time and money. I hope that this post gave you some insight into how to make successful course investments for your blog or business as learning is a big part of growing you, your blog, and your business.