To help build and maintain a loyal audience, digital-savvy authors have been embracing a variety of digital platforms that allow them to create courses, market their new materials, announce upcoming events, and much more. While any virtual learning platform can be a valuable tool to add to your marketing mix, it can be difficult to assess which platform is right for you and your readers.
If you’ve ever looked into the process of developing and marketing your very own online course or workshop, you may have been surprised at the sheer number of options available to authors today. To help you narrow down your choices and confidently select the perfect platform for your needs, this quick guide highlights the pros and cons of some of the most popular options trusted by other authors. Let’s get started!
1. Mighty Networks
This all-in-one platform makes it easy for creators and influencers to connect with their audience across all devices. A single Mighty Network can flourish into a dynamic, engaging community environment where members can interact with one another through polls, direct messages, blog posts, events, and much more. Additionally, creators can sell their courses, advertise upcoming events, and directly interact with members on the platform.
However, Mighty Networks falls flat when it comes to marketing tools, data analytics, and integrated feedback. Creators will be completely responsible for creating classes, sessions, or other promotional items, and they’ll lack the rich advertising tools that other platforms have to offer. Lastly, the onboarding process for Mighty Networks is rather confusing and complex.
If you have the drive to develop all of your own materials and additional marketing resources to help you effectively reach your audience, you may be interested in checking out Mighty Networks for a free 14-day trial.
Teachable is a hosted web and mobile software that emphasizes ease-of-use and unlimited features for authors. You can create videos, quizzes, courses, certificates, and a user-friendly course player to develop an amazing learning experience for your audience. Designed for creators, bloggers, and entrepreneurs, you won’t have to worry about an overly complicated set-up process, and Teachable can seamlessly connect to other third-party apps and platforms.
The downside of Teachable is that there is no community option, making it challenging for students to directly interact with each other or connect with you. Authors may require a separate Facebook group to successfully juggle all the lesson elements and keep track of each member’s progress. It’s also a 100% DIY solution, made for people who have the time to create their own courses from scratch, and the platform has very limited customization options.
To learn more, you can get started for free by creating a Teachable account.
This web-only learning platform supports all types of multimedia formats to help you build an engaging, one-of-a-kind course for your members. Other features of Thinkific include an intuitive drag-and-drop course builder, a simple website builder, advanced options for quizzes, a set of business tools, and built-in security updates. For authors and creators who want to create certification-based courses or highly informative content, Thinkific allows you to sign up for free before getting started.
However, it should be noted that this platform offers the fewest opportunities to engage with your audience on a peer-to-peer basis. There’s no community option, and Thinkific leaves the entire creation process up to the author or influencer. Furthermore, there have been performance issues with the checkout pages, and Thinkific lacks decent marketing features.
hiitide is both a platform designed for mobile and a service designed to help authors, publishers, and influencers create valuable and relevant content for readers. Unlike the other virtual learning platforms mentioned previously, hiitide is the only option that has a “done-for-you” service instead of being completely DIY. When authors sign up with hiitide, the team works diligently to create courses, market to the right audiences, offer customer support, and moderate the peer-to-peer communities for every hiitide course (aka “virtual book clubs”). Furthermore, hiitide is the only platform that exclusively caters to authors and readers who want to participate in virtual book clubs.
Currently, hiitide does not have a web application, but the engaging, ad-free mobile apps make it simple for readers to access daily lessons, connect with other members, and look into other suggested materials. hiitide is built to help authors continue writing and creating content that their audience will love while developing an evergreen course that will generate a consistent flow of sales. If you want to learn how hiitide can help you make a new 6-figure income with a done-for-you virtual book club, schedule your meeting with a representative today!