Do you buy blogging courses but never actually finish them? Maybe sometimes you don’t even start them… Here’s how to make sure you actually DO the blogging courses you buy (and get your money’s worth!)
Hands up if you have ever bought a blogging course and not actually finished it… (or even started it!)
I’m pretty sure you have your hand right now.
And it’s not surprising if you have. There are so many great blogging courses out there: courses on how to start a blog, how to grow your blog, how to take better photographs, how to get insane traffic from Pinterest, how to rock your insta, how to get sponsored work, how to explode your email list.
You name an aspect of blogging, and I am pretty confident that there’s a course out there on it!
And those courses are so often launched with a nice shiny discount that makes you feel you just have to buy it because this is the only chance you’ll get to snag it at the shiny discount price.
The trouble is, of course, that all those brilliant exciting courses that promise so much can all too easily end up languishing on your computer somewhere not actually getting done.
And that nice shiny discount price just represents a whole lot of wasted money if you don’t actually do the course!
I’m not saying don’t buy blogging courses – far from it. I am a huge blogging course fan and I believe that blogging courses can make a massive difference to your blog… and especially your blogging income…
But only if you actually do them!
Here’s how to make sure you actually DO the blogging courses you buy (and get your money’s worth!)
Why do blogging courses at all?
Before I dive into how to make sure you actually do the blogging courses you’ve bought, let’s look quickly at why bother with blogging courses at all…
After all isn’t practically EVERYTHING available on the internet for free these days?
Well, yes and no. Free advice is time consuming AND it will only get you so far.
Yes, you can find all sorts of free advice on the internet but it takes huge amounts of time to trawl through all the free advice to find the nuggets that you really need.
A well written blogging course is a fast track to the outcome that you want. Typically, it has taken the course creator years to figure out the best way of doing the thing they teach… but they are offering all those years’ worth of accumulated knowledge to you in a just a few short weeks of study.
Yes you could get there eventually if you put in years’ worth of trial and error like the course creator did… or you could get the fast track and get to where you want to be MUCH faster. In fact, money-wise it’s usually far smarter to take the course (and earn the course fees back – and then some – with the power of your new knowledge) than spend years trying to figure it out yourself.
But also, free advice will only get you so far. Why? Well firstly, while most bloggers and online entrepreneurs do give away plenty of free advice on their subject, their free advice is usually only the basic principles – the tip of the iceberg. To get the really in-depth stuff, the secret tricks of the trade and the stuff that will actually move your blog forward, you need to invest in their course.
Courses also come with tons of extras that you just can’t get for free: group coaching, private Facebook groups, workbooks, checklists, cheatsheets, swipe copy etc.
And then there’s the issue of sorting the good info out from the bad. With courses you have testimonials which tell you if the course actually delivers on its promises. With free info, you have much less to go on… which is why so often with free information it’s about trial and error… and often a lot of error.
Blogging courses are amazing things that can really take you and your blog to the next level and do wonders for your bank balance, but only if you actually do them… and do them properly!
OK, so hopefully you are sold on the benefits of taking blogging courses, but how do you make sure you actually do the courses you’ve already paid for and get the benefit?
Maybe you are not the kind of person who buys courses and then doesn’t get round to actually doing them. Maybe instead you are the sort of person who has a list of courses you want to do, and you’ll buy them when you are ready to start them… it’s just you never quite get round buying and starting them. This process will help you too! Just use that list of courses you plan to do in the future instead as you go through these steps.
How to make sure you actually DO the blogging courses you buy (and get your money’s worth!)
Step 1: Find all the courses you’ve bought
The first step is to find all those blogging courses you’ve bought over the years (and any free ones you’ve enrolled in) and put them all in one place, so they are easy to find again.
I have a folder on my computer called ‘courses’ and that’s subdivided into each course I’ve ever bought… all the bits and pieces for each course goes into its own folder so it’s easy to find.
I have also got a bookmarks folder in my internet browser for ‘courses’ which is again subdivided into each course. When I buy a course, I bookmark it to that folder so I can easily find it when I am ready to do it, or if I want to refer back to it.
Step 2: Decide which courses are actually worth doing
Time for some cold hard truth. Some of those courses you’ve bought / downloaded / enrolled in are probably not worth doing.
Go through each course you’ve bought and try to figure out what the outcome is and how badly you need / want that outcome.
For example, let’s take a course on ‘How to grow your Twitter following’ – the outcome here would be more Twitter followers… but how much do you need more Twitter followers? Will having more Twitter followers actually truly enhance your blogging and improve your bank balance? Or is it just a vanity metric and actually your time might be better spent elsewhere?
Now take for example an SEO course (like SEO Jumpstart) – the outcome here is more blog traffic from Google, which means you would qualify for Mediavine and start earning money from your blog. Will earning (more) money from your blog be a good thing? I think most bloggers would say yes!
Focus on trying to complete the courses that will actually benefit your blog and your bottom line and quietly say ‘buh bye’ to the courses that just aren’t going to be worth your time.
Step 3: Order the remaining courses
The next step is to decide on the order in which you plan to do the remaining courses.
One thing’s for sure, you can’t do 17 courses all at once! Flitting between multiple different courses is a sure-fire way to ensure you end up benefiting from NONE of them.
You need to focus on one course at a time if you want to see the benefits.
So, take a look at the courses you have left.
Which of those courses do you believe will have the greatest impact on your blog… and especially your bottom line?
(Psst – that’s actually a good way to pick courses going forward – before you buy a course always ask yourself ‘How much of an effect will this have on my bottom line?’)
As a general rule I would always focus on the courses which will have the biggest effect on my bottom line first.
Though there are a couple of other considerations…
- If the course will have a big effect on your productivity, that might be worth doing first as it will free up more time for you to do the other courses.
- With some courses it might make sense to do them in a particular order… for example it makes sense to do the course on email marketing first, before you do the course on creating your first product (since you’ll need a decent sized email list before you can have a successful product launch!)
Step 4: Decide when you will do the first course
Now I want you to totally forget about all the other courses and just focus on the one course you have decided to do next.
One of the reasons why we don’t do the courses we’ve bought is the overwhelm of ‘all these courses’. Reducing that overwhelm by just focusing on one course will make you much more likely to get on and actually do it.
Now you need to decide WHEN you will do that course.
Because there will never be time unless you MAKE time.
There are 3 main ways of making time to do a blogging course.
1. Blitz it
The first and arguably the easiest way to do a blogging course is to blitz it. Treat your online blogging course as you would a course you actually attend in person. Block off several days in your schedule and during those days work solidly on it until it’s done.
This is obviously the fastest way to complete a course, but it does require an enormous amount of discipline to do nothing else until the course is finished. That said, if you want to be certain that you will finish the course AND if you want to get the results as fast as possible, this is definitely the route to take.
2. Do a little bit each day
At the opposite end of the spectrum is the ‘little and often’ approach. Make an appointment with yourself at a set time each day to do a set amount of the blogging course you are currently focusing on – for example, 30 minutes a day from 10.30 to 11am.
Try to schedule your ‘course time’ fairly early in the day. In my experience anything left to the end of the day just doesn’t get done!
And be disciplined – set an alarm or a reminder on your phone. When the alarm goes off. Stop what you are doing and spend 30 minutes on the course. At the end of the 30 minutes, stop, and go back to what you were doing before. By following this approach, you will make good progress every day and it will soon become part of your routine (hopefully a part that you really look forward to every day!)
3. Scheduled Blocks
This final approach is like a cross between the first two. Treat this course like an in-person course you do once a week or twice a week. For example, you might decide to treat Fridays as your ‘blogging course day’.
You would do all the rest of your blogging work Monday to Thursday and then do nothing but the course on Fridays.
Alternatively, you could plan to do the course for 3 hours on a Tuesday afternoon and 4 hours on a Saturday morning – or whatever suits your schedule. Again, this will require discipline, but for a shorter amount of time than the ‘blitz it’ option.
Whichever of these approaches you choose, stick to it as strongly as you would an important appointment. Don’t allow yourself to make excuses and exceptions. After all, if the course outcome is something you really want (and if it is not then you have chosen the wrong course!), it will be more than worth it when you see the results.
In fact, the most likely thing that will happen is that you will mentally kick yourself for not doing it months ago.
One of the most common comments I get from students on my SEO Jumpstart course is ‘I wish I’d done this sooner!’
Step 5: Put it in your diary!
Don’t just pick one of the options above and then treat it as a vague intention… otherwise that course still won’t get done!
Actually block out the time when you plan to do the course in your diary.
This small, but important step will make a huge difference to the likelihood of you actually doing – and completing – the course you bought.
So go on… do it now!
Step 6: Actually get your money’s worth
But there’s one more important consideration when doing blogging courses and that is to DO THE WORK! It’s of absolutely no use whatsoever to just simply read the course and/or watch the videos.
If you actually want to get your money’s worth, you need to roll up your sleeves and get stuck in, doing all the action steps and putting the advice into practice on your blog and/or social media channels etc.
So after each unit, stop and ask yourself ‘what do I need to do to put this into practice?’ and don’t let yourself even start the next unit until you have done the necessary action steps.
In fact, a well written course will have action steps built in so you will know exactly what you need to do before you move on to the next lesson.
Step 7: Rinse and repeat
Follow the steps above to complete the first course on your hitlist.
But don’t just stop there.
Repeat the steps above until you have completed all the courses you have bought, but never actually finished (or perhaps never even started in some cases!).
Step 8: Apply these steps to new courses too
Once you’ve worked through your blogging course backlog, you can then apply these steps to new courses you want to do in the future too.
Write a list of courses you are interested in doing, use the principles in step 2 to decide if each course on your list is actually worth doing.
Apply the principles in step 3 to decide which course to do first and then apply the principles in steps 4-6 to ensure you actually do each course and get the results!
Try not to buy new courses until you are actually ready to do them.
However, I know that sometimes the lure of the shiny special offer price is all too tempting. And actually it makes good business sense to take advantage of the shiny special offer price while it’s available… so long as you make a firm commitment in your diary as to when you will actually do it!
Over to you…
I’d love to hear from you if this post has helped you!
How many unfinished courses do you have sitting on your computer right now? What plans have you made to actually get them done?
Or perhaps you have another tip for actually getting blogging courses done and getting the benefits from them?
Let me know in the comments below!
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