Why we like MOOCs:
We think MOOCs are going to be OK. We are not bothered one bit by the swings in public and education moods around these Massive Open Online Courses. MOOCs work just fine if you know what to ask of them.
What to ask of a MOOC:
Attract some hundreds of people who care about what your organization does. Forget the claims of enrolling tens or hundreds of thousands of people--sure, you can entice them to fill out the registration form but you cannot make them come. Even if they sign in, they'll sign right back out again.
Instead, invite a few hundred to come and engage with you and with your content. Treat them like adults. Let them come when they want and do what they want. Serve them wonderful content and interact with them.
- Invite all your customers and prospects. (We'll help with the invitation, making it a lot more inviting than a sales pitch.)
- Select a MOOC platform that has great publicity in its own right so that the MOOC itself is inviting people to participate.
- We can also ramp up some social media outlets for you. We recommend the free sort so that you don't have regrets if these outlets don't perform for you.
Present some great content:
We can write it for you or build on what you already have. We recommend a short course that is genuinely helpful in some way. Your sales pitch is in the "Sponsored by" line, along with follow-up offers you can send post-MOOC.
You've heard it before: content is king. But online, you need strong presentation, too. We help with low-cost ways to produce:
- Short (short!) videos
- Interactive learning objects
- Self-scoring quizzes
- Facilitated discussions
- Badges to reward accomplishments (including certificates, credentials, and other styles)
Aiming for great numbers:
We've done MOOCs for up to 900 people, LOOCs for as few as 45, Student Commons for up to 3000, Faculty Commons for up to 125, and Board of Directors Commons for as few as 18. In all cases, the goal was engagement and that was achieved through learner-centered activity, prompt and enthusiastic facilitation, and data analytics.
- Recruit people who are good "fits" for your organization.
- Engage them in helpful activity and learning.
- Follow-up with offers that will interest them.