Digital training has never been easier to create or had the biggest impact on generating leads.
For most, however, the hurdle to start leveraging digital training to promote your business or agency is a big and scary one: Where to start? What to say? How to position the brand?
Through my coaching at WP Elevation, RockStar Empires and WP Care Market I have created and sold hundreds of hours of digital training. Although the recipe for success involves way more than five easy steps, these will be enough to get you started, so you can repeat the process until you refine your message, your training, and your confidence.
Step 1: Create the Content
Scale back the novel floating in your head and focus on talking points. What problem do you want to help solve for your clients or customers? What one point do you want them to walk away with above all else?
Now try and distill that into a short and sweet message that you can record in 5-10 minute videos if creating pre-recorded training or a 1-hour presentation if presenting a digital webinar. Some questions I ask myself every time I go to create the content for my digital training:
- What’s the problem and what promise am I making to solve this problem?
- Why is solving this problem important now?
- What are the ways to solve this problem? (the key teaching points)
- What are the objections to solving this problem? (why people don’t take action)
- What will happen if the viewer doesn’t take action now?
- What are the action steps moving forward?
For digital agencies, the most important step to take before producing any content is to research. You need to be fully confident in your target market and key message before pressing record.
Be careful, however, to not overextend your expertise in too wide of an area that you confuse your target market on what it is you do and do well. If the fields of focus are numerous, just make the underlying message consistent, i.e. “all these videos focus on generating your business revenue” or “all these videos focus on increasing traffic.”
Step 2: Secure your recording space
Let’s bust a myth: You don’t need a fancy studio. In fact, I feel when content creators use the backdrop of their office it lends credibility to their message by showcasing them in their environment. A quality podcast microphone, high definition web camera, and nice bright lighting will be enough to capture your message.
Make sure your space is quiet, not distracting visually and that the sound is clear. Above all else, the sound is the most critical. Invest your time and money in making sure the sound is spot on.
- Blue Yeti podcasting mic or Rhode podcasting mic
- Logitech Brio webcam
- A softbox lighting kit
Step 3: Record using visuals
Avoid the continuous talking head. Cut up your training with visuals, it’s the strongest way to educate your viewers and keep them engaged. Use a simple PowerPoint or Keynote template to create slides, like you would for a large in-person presentation.
Create these slides as you create your content, then use those images to slice into your video using software such as iMovie, ScreenFlow or for the more advanced Final Cut Pro.
Step 4: Edit with your branding
The whole reason to invest your time and money into creating digital training is to solidify your brand, spread your message and establish yourself or your agency as the expert in your field. Take the time to put title cards at the beginning and end with your brand and find music from royalty-free libraries like Audio Jungle to create a mood during the intro into your training. Creating a brand strategy for your videos will also enable your training to be consistent.
Consider the following:
- A brand document about which fonts, colors, logos should be used
- A brand document about the tone/voice of your brand, script for webinars, intros, outros, and signoffs
- A designed Keynote or Powerpoint template for the teaching point slides
- A shared folder of media with royalty-free music, title cards, and intro/outro animation
Step 5: Use tools for a clear call to action
The most important point to note once you begin is to know if your digital training is working. YouTube, Vimeo, and Wistia can embed links within the video itself and prompt a call to action toward the end to see how engaged your users are to take action.
Step it up a notch if you are sharing the training publically and leverage Vimeo or YouTube’s tools to embed some links or cards to promote other pieces of content as the viewer watches the video, not just at the end. Otherwise, put links within the page that you’ve embedded your training to offer your client or customers a “next step” and track those links to see how engaged users are in downloading materials, taking a quiz for material reinforcement or redirecting to a website you mentioned.
Where to go from here
Start writing down ideas for your digital training and the ways you will leverage the calls to action in that training. After narrowing down ideas, start asking around if this is training that your audience will find valuable.
I call these “easy” steps, yet I know that none of this can feel easy the first time around. There’s a lot of failed attempts, dissatisfaction at the sound of your own voice, or frustration with tech.
If you’re hitting a self-conscious hurdle, run your first webinars for friends or small groups, don’t use video for your first training and just talk over visuals or slides, or co-present with another person, so it takes the edge off and splits the focus.
The key takeaway is to know that this is how everyone starts, so don’t give up. Just like riding a bike, you have to keep getting up to get better.