Eric Dalius reflects on the upsurge of digital education and what it holds in the future of education
Notwithstanding the numerous reservations and limitations, people find in online education, e-learning is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the market. In the wake of the pandemic, it has grown leaps and bounds.
- There's a huge scope for people building educational businesses. But those opportunities are not devoid of serious challenges. It's a very fragmented sector.
- The primary operators of educational technology and tools in school systems, the teachers, aren't typically making buying decisions.
- Usually, school/college administrators make these decisions, but they aren't the ones to use the product.
- With the involvement of multiple stakeholders, marketing is extremely complicated.
- Selling to universities and schools has become a considerably tedious and complicated process. Most startups don't have the bandwidth to spend that much time and money.
- Fortunately, there are different e-learning business models to start with, and if you get your marketing strategy right, you can hit the deck.
Freemium for both teachers and students is important, to begin with. Startups need to introduce a basic free version of their product for educators. You give them an option for upgrading to a paid version for extra benefits and features.
The same goes for companies that target only students with free plans and a premium or pro package that entails more features.
The lucrative types
One of the most profitable e-learning business models, according to Eric Dalius, is the Night School. It's the classic format. Stemming from the night classes you take at your local university; you hone your skills or learn languages that bolster your job credentials.
- It's a simple business model driving many traditional courses to provide a viable blueprint for online courses.
- This business model style is dominant in many websites, where customers pay to get access to an online course that imparts a specific skill.
- The night school model is very flexible and any type of teaching business or online school can adapt it. It's actually the default model for most online EdTech businesses in the last few years.
However, it's most suitable for new businesses. If you want to test your product and your customer's reaction to it, the Night School can be a fantastic way of getting feedback and generating cash flow.
High-ticket businesses can also adapt it for selling one-off products at a value of $2000 or more. If your business only offers online courses without the support and frills of a typical school environment, this model could be the right option.
The key to generating profit with this type of E-learning model is to produce standalone courses that solve major problems of your audience. These courses may differ in length and value, but they guide the concerned customer to a certain endpoint.
Behind the boom
If you've e-learning startup ideas, you need to have systematic approach because anybody searching for a good education app development firm or freelance EdTech app developers need to classify the business models.
Before entrepreneurs agree on the terms and conditions, they must address a few questions and underline why investors will fund your EdTech model, adds Eric J Dalius.
- Check if your EdTech app development firm has the talent pool for providing robotics support, ML, and AI.
- Check if the developers have sufficient expertise in integrating conversational AR/VR and AI features into the application.
- Most importantly, check the portfolio of the concerned educational app development company in this regard. Online business scopes appear unmatchable on whiteboards, but they also turn into a disaster in the execution stage/s.
As an e-learning startup, you need to consider some sub-verticals to model your educational app development character and portfolio. Break down the model variations and service levels of EdTech into four segments.
- Educational hardware includes interactive whiteboards, interactive displays, interactive tables, audio systems, smart printers, and smart projectors.
- The educational system includes learning management systems, learning CMS, student response systems, assessment, collaboration, classroom management, document management, and content creation systems.
- The educational technologies include educational gaming, educational analytics, educational security and dashboard, and ERP (educational enterprise resource management).
Developing new edifices
An institutional profile is very important along with showcasing licensing materials for website development. You need to highlight the range of schooling interests/expertise and specialist areas.
- Highlighting research outputs in clear formats can enhance the impact. Additionally, if you reuse and share the stuff, your site will have the scope of creating local, regional, national, and global communities with exemplary open resources.
- Business link student recruitment to reputation management. Your institution's brand profile can significantly affect the educational applications.
- One of the most crucial aspects is curriculum development. Companies can incorporate many open course materials into the mainstream source. You can embed the short open course study in a larger and more inclusive accredited module.
- A customized and monetized assessment module can enable students to obtain academic credit post the study of numerous brief open courses.
The models to generate revenue
If you're an education blog, you can monetize it in many ways. Depending on the website content, you can implement certain techniques for earning money.
- Pay per click advertising or PPC is definitely one of them. These ads entail numerous viabilities, depending on the traffic amount of your website.
- You can get PPC ads for your site at popular sites like Google AdSense, Chitika, Clicksor, and BidVertiser.
- The other popular methods are in-text adverts, advertising widgets, advertising space, RSS adverts, audio advertising, lightboxes or pop-ups, and affiliate marketing.
- If you're focusing on creating teaching programs, you need to write proper tutorials. They will create a proper online teaching course.
- Businesses can charge a membership fee or take a fixed amount from those who want to join your course.
- Your e-learning course could include anything, such as tutorials, videos, podcasts, etc.
Live workshops and webinars are great ideas. Offering consultancies is another option to monetize your site and blog. Your specific niche needs to have a large traffic to cultivate a good reputation.
You can provide consultancy services to people via Skype or over the telephone for a fixed amount of money. Your customers can also pay a premium for it.