A cogent and meaningful business strategy can seem quite daunting to craft (particularly if you have not done this before),so it is helpful to carve a strategy into more ‘doable’ timeframes. For example, you can focus on 3 month intervals within a 1st year strategy. When we work on our strategy for Dream See Do, we use this exact process. We also break our strategy into distinct business needs like: Product; Client Services; Marketing; Sales; and Content needs. We consistently check back on our purpose, values and audience findings. This will ensure that our strategy reflects our objectives for impact, our desire to properly serve our audience, and ultimately our goals for revenue as well.
In order to get a more practical understanding of how this process works, I am going to provide some exercises that you can practice as you create your strategy. First, you will want to Identify the Knowledge you want your learners to take in, the Skills you want them to master and the Mindset that you want them to have - or your K-S-M. Here are some activities that can help you identify your K-S-M’s.
K - CONNECT: Begin to connect with thought leaders in your field, both through their writings and then meetings/calls to discuss your goals and aspirations. When you read books and articles from other thought leaders in your field, this helps provide creative ideas, and insights into a variety of techniques and practices. Next, sharing ideas and plans directly with other thought leaders and teachers, helps you to garner feedback from reliable and wise sources. Try this out and begin to codify WHAT you want your audience to truly learn.
S - PRACTICE: You can refine the areas of Knowledge into several key Learning Objectives. These are the main learning objectives that you want to embed into your online programs. Once you have these solidified, you can start to define the work streams and skills necessary to create, disseminate and support your online programs. Consider these prompts as you do so: What are the major areas you need to focus on in order to achieve your business goals? What skills are necessary in order to accomplish these? Once you understand the skills necessary to complete the work ahead, you can create a concise strategy for each area. Some tasks you’ll take on and others you will need to delegate. The strategy can be divided into 3 month blocks.
Here's an example from one of our main workstreams that likely will resonate with you. If there is an activity that you are not comfortable performing, start to consider who you may employ (hire or barter) to help with this task:
- 1-3 months - research the types of content that our audience is consuming.
- 3-6 months - plan the content strategy using these insights, including types of content and social media channels.
- 6-9 months - begin to write content and execute the strategy. Try starting with 3 articles a month on a blog that your audience read, and 5 social posts a week with 1 main social outlet where your audience commonly engages.
- 9-12 months - begin to look at the data. See how people are responding to your articles and social posts and craft a follow-up strategy for engaging with the audience now that you have built a substantial base of content.
M - REFLECT: As you make plans for your work/business and continue to execute this strategy, check back at least every 3 months and see if your pending decisions and action items continue to match your purpose and values. You will quickly find satisfaction as your content and business grows, and remains aligned to your vision for impacting the world.
Our team can help you create and cultivate the most dynamic online learning courses, with strong engagement and outcomes! Sign up today for a free 30 minute consultation ($125 value) with our CEO Jeremy, to review your program goals and needs.