Do you have expertise in a certain area that you want to share with the world? If so, you are in luck, as there has never been a better time to teach others about what you know. The online world makes it easy to access thousands, even millions, of people who want to learn about your subject area of choice.
There are multiple ways to communicate your knowledge to others, but today we are going to examine just two in-depth. We will look firstly at how to become an author and secondly at how to become a course creator on Udemy. We will also consider the benefits of both approaches, so that you can make an informed choice.
How to Become an Author
When we talk about how to become an author, we are really considering how to become a self-published author of e-books. A digital e-book is fairly easy to create. As long as you own some form of word processing package, and a program to convert that document into pdf format, you can create a basic book. This can be sold on your own website, if you have one. If not, you will need to set up a website in order to share your knowledge with the world. This step can sometimes be difficult and more time consuming than the actual creation of the e-book.
If you want to write and sell through any of the e-reader merchants you will first need to have your book converted into a specific document type. These merchants often do not require the same format, so this can involve creating multiple versions of the book. You can either pay for someone else to do this conversion or you can do it yourself, although you might find it a fairly steep learning curve at first.
When you are writing your e-book you will need to plan out what content you want to include and how you are going to structure it. The main limitation of a text format is that you can’t offer the variety of multimedia. Instead of being able to explain to someone how to do something through audio or to show them through video, you will need to document the individual steps.
With an e-book you are also very much on your own in terms of promotion. You will need to drive traffic to your own website, where the book is being sold, and spread the word about the book’s benefits through marketing. If you are selling through one of the e-merchants then it is true that the online shopping channel should possess a built-in audience. However, you will still need to do all the initial marketing to get it onto the best seller lists, where it should start to get noticed. This often means that the monetary return on your writing can be very small.
Becoming a Course Creator on Udemy
The second way to share your knowledge is through becoming a course creator on Udemy. This has several distinct advantages over the e-book author route.
The first advantage is that you can teach through a multimedia format. You will learn how to become an author but through a much more exciting and dynamic medium. For example a large percentage of the course, usually 60% or more, is taught through video.
There is no cost involved in setting yourself up as a course instructor on Udemy. There are no initial setup fees and no ongoing costs for adding your course to the site. In addition, in these days when most smartphones and cameras can record video, the technical side should be no barrier. In fact Udemy has some great guidelines on what equipment you can use to get started.
The second advantage to Udemy, and this is a key one, is that it has a very large and active audience. At any time there are 1 million students undertaking courses and 2 million people searching the site monthly, a huge opportunity for your course to be found. In fact 96 % of the instructors on Udemy make a sale and the average earnings per instructor are $7,000.
Maybe you already have a following of people who would be willing to learn from you, perhaps you write for a blog or you share your knowledge in a forum. This can be a great advantage for you, as any students you find directly, you get to earn 100% of the revenue, minus payment fees. Any students Udemy brings to your course you earn 50% of the revenue, and there are a huge number browsing the site at any time, many looking for exactly what you teach.
Which Option Is Best For You?
We have explored how to become an author of e-books and how to become an instructor on Udemy. What you want to teach isn’t going to be a factor, as both options are available to you whatever your subject area.
How you want to teach that subject however, is going to make a difference. Do you prefer to write very detailed text based descriptions of what you want others to learn? Do you prefer to talk about what you know, and to bring the subject matter alive in a multimedia format? Your preference should influence the choice you make.
The other important element is time. Do you have the capacity to set up your own website to sell your e-books, and to drive traffic there? Alternatively do you prefer the option where people are already actively searching for educational courses?
You now know how to become an author of text based books. The next step would be to plan your course and to write it. If you prefer the Udemy option there are some great webinars on setting about planning and creating your course, head over to the webinar page.
You know what you want to teach and you are now aware of two options for getting your knowledge out into the world. If you choose the e-book option, fire up your word processing program and begin writing. If you would rather learn how to become a course instructor on Udemy there is a wealth of information waiting for you.