There are a lot of factors that help us in building and maintaining our business on italki. Our responsiveness to students, our profiles and videos, our service, our attitude in class, and good content. So, what is good content? Here are some things to consider about content.
We can make it and we can buy it
We live busy lives. Not all of us are artists, designers, have photoshop skills, sing, write, and so on… or have the time to create content even though we have those skills. Luckily there are lots of people and companies out there that do make content. Some even let us customize a bit.
- Buy some class content and spruce it up with a bit of your own flair and tastes.
- Find images online and borrow from sources
- Build templates for quick easy content creation later.
It looks good
Aesthetics can be tricky and different people have different tastes, but your content should reflect you and your teaching.
- Content should be concise, clear, and reflect your uniqueness.
- It should be visually good-looking to you, colorful, and insightful.
- It should be functional, students should want to use it to study and review.
It helps students review
As teachers, we sometimes focus on the content in our lessons, but when it comes to rebooking the content we provide outside our lesson is just as important. Follow up class with various content.
- Exercises based on the materials in class
- Digital Quizzes
- Further Resources
Provide these things, but also understand that students may not use them. It is more the idea that you are providing the materials, not the use of materials that helps students rebook.
It shows student’s progress
Creating an excellent progress report template, and taking a few moments after class to fill it out and send it creates a nice sense of closure and responsibility on the part of your students. It also creates a log of progression students have made
- Try to create a template that helps rate students on: pronunciation, speaking, listening, reading, comprehension, and fluency.
- Remember to judge these appropriately for a student's level.
- Try scoring out of 5 or 10 stars for the day.
- Leave space for some quick individual comments about the content, a memorable moment in class, or an explanation about the scoring.
It is more than just in-class content
Along with our great feedback report and providing links or copies of study materials to help guide students we can create different media to be used with many of our students. This can be catered to individuals or more broadly to help more of our students at once.
- Podcasts, create your own that reflects your teaching style and captures your voice to share with your students. You can level it for easy comprehension and talk about topics interesting to you and your students.
- Newsletters & Articles, create a monthly newsletter with fun cultural activities and updates can be a great way to share and keep connected to students outside of class. This allows you to also stay in touch with students who may not have booked in a while and remind them of your classes.
- Videos, here we recommend treading lightly for two reasons. First, production values on YouTube and other platforms are high and hard to compete with, and having low production value can hurt your business. Secondly, creating videos demands a lot of time, and may not return as much in the way of bookings s other means.
It is changing
Considering everything above the last key is simple, but not easy. You need to keep creating and keep changing/updating your content to keep it fresh.
- Try creating a content plan: time what content to create and when.
- Include when you will revisit things or update things.
- Make smaller changes frequently to ‘evolve’ the content. Rather than larger re-designs infrequently.
- Seek inspiration, what are other creators doing that you can adapt and develop on your own.
There is no one answer to getting and keeping students. Everything we do can contribute to or inhibit our success. But clear, usable, and attractive content always helps us provide the best to our students and help us keep them coming back for more.