In this LMScast episode, Dr. Carrie Rose shares her experience and background in online course creation and education.
Dr. Carrie Rose is a educational leadership and course development expert. She is also the author of the book “The Completed Course” and can be found on her website, of-course.us. The path that Dr. Carrie Rose has been on has sparked her interest in teaching and making a difference.
She thinks that online education may significantly improve people’s lives all around the world. Dr. Carrie Rose imagines a society in which everyone completes online courses and achieves the desired outcomes, therefore strengthening their families, their money, their emotions, and their physical and mental well-being.
She reveals that her own personal journey is what initially sparked her interest in this profession. She was severely timid and unwilling to talk due to selective mutism, which she suffered from from the age of four to ten.
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Chris Badgett: You’ve come to the right place if you’re looking to create, launch, and scale a high value online training program. I’m your guide, Chris Badgett. I’m the co-founder of LifterLMS, the most powerful learning management system for WordPress. State of the end, I’ve got something special for you. Enjoy the show.
Hello, and welcome back to another episode of L m S Cast. I’m joined by a special guest. Her name is Dr. Carrie Rose. She ha is a doctor of education, educational leadership. I think I got that right. Mm-hmm. And she’s, she’s also the author of the completed course, which you can get on Amazon and you can find her on her website, of course.
Dot us. Welcome to the show, Carrie.
Dr. Carrie Rose: Thank you so much for having me. I’m glad it worked out. Glad we could be here today.
Chris Badgett: I know we’re gonna nerd out because I can tell when I come across somebody, you know, that has spent as much time obsessing and just fashion fascinated and passionate about courses and learning and you know, helping make an impact in the world.
So I think we’re gonna have an awesome conversation here just to frame it in for the audience. What. Do you, what’s your background in courses and education that kind of made you wanna really double down, especially in the online course space and in helping people in this field?
Dr. Carrie Rose: Yeah, so I mean, part of that is my, my second house is an Aquarius.
That just means in, in, in astrology it means you, you make money by doing weird things. And so I think playing online is definitely an alternative. Sort of profession, so much so that my parents are still trying to figure it out and understand it. But you know, I, I think I do what I believe and, and I believe that at this point in time, more than any other, we have this gift through online courses to really make a difference, you know, with other people all over the world.
And you see it like right now, like who all is watching this live streamer is gonna be impacted by it. You know, they could be at anywhere, at any time. You know, picking up on this, and I just like to think of the world in terms of what if, like what if everyone took an online course, had the result that they were promised?
By buying the Iron one course, by purchasing it in the first place, what would that mean in terms of their wellbeing, financially, emotionally, mentally? What would that mean in terms of their family strength and their family unit? You know, what would that mean in terms of their health and their physical wellbeing?
Ongoing? Right. And so, so many promises are made inside of these online courses, and my focus has really been to. You know, see how we can get people to complete them. I’ve created a process built on over 500 research studies on how the human brain connects to content. And as a result, we’ve had clients get up to 96% completion rates in the industry average, or is, well, I’d say about three to 5%, but pretty abysmal.
And really what happened was, you know, my mess is my message. I witnessed something pretty traumatic when I was four. I, I blacked out and when I came to, I had something known as selective mutism, so I barely spoke for six years of my life. So just picture the shyest person you’ve ever met and then multiply that by like a thousand.
And that was me, and so, you know, from the time I was four till 10 just really just kind of a wallflower. And I had one teacher. In fifth grade, Mrs. D Taylor in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Take me from that to the highest standardized test score that school had seen in one year. And what I learned through my own personal journey is the power of impact that we can create on another human being when we care and we know the right strategies.
And so when I got into public ed, I was in public ed for about 10 years. I just became obsessed with how to be Mrs. Taylor. Like how could I do that? With everyone that came into contact with me. Like, so I got really, really obsessed with research-based strategies, like what did the data say? And unpacking that over and over and over again.
What I learned for myself is probably similar to most course creators. I learned that I could help, but I could only help on the scale of, you know, my bandwidth on the scale of how many people were in front of me at a given year. So about 25 I was capped at, right? And I was like, how can I make this? Or than 25 a year, how could I go on past that?
I decided to get my doctorate and I thought it was gonna work for the Department of Ed, either at the state or federal level. I took one trip to Tallahassee and met with House of Representatives, Senate department of Education and union reps, and literally decided that everybody seemed miserable and there was no way I was living that life.
So I was trying to figure out what to do with all of my knowledge and all of my passion and excitement for education and the difference we can make with others. And, you know, and what to do with my future, right? Because at that point I had no idea and I was like, I give up. And so I’m sitting in a world of beer one night and you know if, if, if you ever want divine intervention, just go to where craft beers are sold.
I was sitting there and in walk three internet marketers and they start talking about affiliate marketing and internet marketing, and I had never heard those words before. I was very confused by them. That was like 2012. And I didn’t understand it, and I was telling Chris before this started, I, I am not used to not understanding things.
It’s been a long time since I things or like outside of like, you know, we’re hearing things that are new. Not like I can’t learn new things. Everybody can, but just that most people talk about things that I’ve already heard before and this was something that was so far out of my world, I’m sure like, Those people that are watching, like the first time you heard about internet marketing, it was probably like what?
And that not like you didn’t know you could buy things online. But like that you could sell things online specifically. And so it opened up a whole new, a whole new gateway. A whole new access point for me to really like look into like, okay, how do I take this and change my life? And how do I take this and change the life and trajectory of my family and sitting with it, you know, these.
Gentleman gave me access to online course after online course, after online course that they had, you know, that they had created so that I could start learning online marketing. And what I found inside of these programs was that a lot of the same mistakes that were being made in public ed were being made inside of these programs.
And what I really think it comes down to is not like a lack of caring or a lack of heart. My theory is that we teach how we’ve been taught, or we teach how we’ve learn. Because I can look at an, at an online course almost every time and pick out exactly how that person best learns because it’s the way that they’re sharing the information.
And so I decided that I was going to do something about it, and that’s when I created my process. And it’s just been a whirlwind or since then. I’m just absolutely blessed by the ability to help people, you know, and it, and again, in a much more impactful way than I was when I got started.
Chris Badgett: Wow, that’s amazing.
I think everything you said there are the pieces we’re gonna talk about for the next hour. This is awesome. We’ll start kind of at the end where you were like, people often teach the way that they like to learn, I believe is the way you said it. What are the, what are the, how do we amalgamate the learning styles so that we can approach content with a broader appeal?
Dr. Carrie Rose: Yeah. So it’s interesting, right? Like, so I mean, this really comes down to differentiate instruction. And you know, when I say differentiated instruction in regular education, we look at things in terms of, you know, how do we give each person what they need at the moment that they need it. And I have some theories on how AI is gonna alter this going forward, but you know, there’s three main ways to differentiate.
You can differentiate by product, by content, or by process. And so when you look at differentiating by product, your, your students are doing that for you, meaning they’re taking whatever that you’re giving them inside of their course, and they’re applying it to their individual life, business, what have you.
Right? So the product is automatically, sorry about that, is automatically differentiating itself. You can also differentiate by content. So, oh, sorry. One moment. It’s okay. Rock in my throat. Okay. You can also differentiate by content. So let’s say that you know, they wanna learn something different. They would take a different course.
They don’t have to take that specific course. And they could take another course over here. They could learn from you and a different way, could take a course by another person, right? So they can differentiate by content and they’re gonna choose that on their own. Now, the real opportunity inside of online programs, As differentiating by process.
So how do we put enough different kinds of elements inside of these programs so that the ways that people learn is, is reached no matter, no matter what their background is, no matter what their, you know, their preferences are. And so that’s like the really interesting bridge I’ve been able to make from, you know, working with a lot of students that were.
We call them d nqs, which is, does not qualify. Meaning their IQ was too low to qualify for learning disabled. And there’s, there’s quite a few of them in public. A and a lot of them come from like low socioeconomic backgrounds or a lot of the dyslexic population ends up in that group too. Some of them, some of them go up really high iq.
But look, working with those students and really just becoming fascinated with. Why, you know, why some of them are getting some of these things and some of them are not. Right? And just like kind of split testing different research based fundamental principles.
Chris Badgett: Wow. That’s awesome. You also, you also mentioned like a lot of terms like impact and, and transformation and, and kind of being purpose driven.
Mm-hmm. You know, how do we, there’s different types of course creators, you know, like. And, and I find this interesting in your background is there was this, this other world internet marketing, which sometimes has like the whole make money online vibe. Correct. And then there’s like the education, like we’re gonna change the world.
Look at the amazing difference that one teacher can make ev like from your own story, but you’ve like mashed these together in a brilliant way. How, how do you think about. You know, not just making money online and although that’s important and great to empower entrepreneurs, but really being transformational and not just rote memorization and content.
Like how do we, how do we be more tr transformational at the instructional design phase so that from the beginning we’re really trying to facilitate that more than just handing somebody some important pieces of information.
Dr. Carrie Rose: Yeah. So first of all, nobody’s really gonna be paying for information anymore.
Yeah. Right. And so like, you know, if it wasn’t Google that killed it, it’s gonna be ai. Right. So it’s not, that’s not the thing. They don’t wanna learn that. And nobody really benefits from recall in any way. Yeah. You know, like, can I win, you know, six degrees of Kevin Bacon? Sure. Can I beat people on Jeopardy online or, or on television?
Sure. But it doesn’t actually do anything for my benefit. It doesn’t do anything for my growth to have random files in my head of things that are like absolutely useless, right? What people want is they want their world to be different, and I think. I, I really do think it is a blend of both online marketing. And education that gets us there, or, and purposeful, intentional, transformational educational programs that get us there.
I don’t think that it’s to anybody’s benefit that you don’t sell your course. I don’t think it’s to anybody’s benefit that you don’t know online marketing, and so therefore your course is just sitting on the shelf. Right and sitting on the shelf, but like you have a, you have it in there, but it’s not going out the door.
People aren’t getting access to it. You have to get them in some way. And I think that being, I I, the word authentic gets thrown around a lot. But I think it’s true. Like, I think being yourself and I think caring, like if we empower purpose-driven entrepreneurs with the tools of online marketing now we all win, right?
Because the people that care more about money than growth are going to get there no matter what. So if we empower the people that really need it with those tools of online marketing, we win. They win. Everybody wins. And I’m all about the collective, like how do we lift up all of us? But when we’re looking at, to answer your question more specifically, back to the learning design elements of it, the first thing starts with like trying to figure out where you’re going in the, you know, to begin with.
When you’re creating a course, a lot of people with a lot of big hearts and really great intentions will end up kitchen sinking their course. Yeah.
Chris Badgett: What I mean by, I love that term. I haven’t heard that before. Yeah, I love that. Oh, I totally get it. Yeah, dude,
Dr. Carrie Rose: I think I stole it from Ben and Jerry’s flavor, but so it’s like you’re gonna put everything in it because you know that it took you everything to get to the point where you are and in order for them to be where you are.
Then they need to know everything. But that’s not really how it goes. Right? Like I told you before, I could really win at Six Degrees at Kevin Bacon. I’m not kidding. I’m a walking internet movie database. I look used to work in a video store when I was in high school, and I can’t stop. I’m always making connections with movies.
But if I put that in my course on courses, that would be to everybody’s detriment. And we think in terms of like, yeah, but my knowledge is all on this one thing, right? So like let’s say your, your knowledge is all on flipping furniture. Right. So you, you know, like maybe your knowledge is all in flipping furniture and people wanna flip furniture, but really the first part they need to do is how to fix the furniture to be ready to sell, right?
So there’s one course bulk right there, and that’s what the outcome is. They don’t want everything in the kitchen sink, they want, they’re one outcome. They wanna feel like they have had a win. So part of it is really getting clear on our objectives and inside of this, you know, there’s data that suggests that.
Too much cognitive dissonance in people can’t learn and too little cognitive dissonance in people can’t learn, which is just really, really crazy. But cognitive dissonance to break it down, I like to think about it as my brain getting itchy. Mm-hmm. Right? And so like, that’s just the best way for me to describe it.
Like, ah, okay, I’m not quite with you yet. How do I get from where I am to where you are? It’s like this itchy feeling, It’s not like painful. It’s just, I don’t know, It’s in that area of inquiry. Right. And so when we’re talking about. You know too much cognitive dissonance and people can’t learn. I like to break that down in terms of what are the stair steps, like if I’m taking, if I’m going upstairs and all the steps are there, I, I don’t really have a problem.
Like, I don’t know too many people that do, but I mean, there’s some, but I can get up the stairs. I don’t wanna be able to hear him. I apologize for that. But I can get up the stairs, right? And then if my husband were, do it, no. Yeah, no problem. He could run up the stairs, but if we took like one step out. I might struggle a little bit, but I can still get up the stairs.
He can get up the stairs. Now, if we take two steps out, I’m like, honey, I need a hand. But he can get up the stairs and if we take three steps out, I’m like, ha ha. No, but he can get up the stairs. Right. And so we’re all at different levels on things and all at different abilities on things. And the, the stairs in this case are, what are the series of steps or what are the series of, of objectives that get people from what my friend Tim Erway likes to call somewhere in Suckville to somewhere in awesome town.
So in this staircase of sex build awesome town, you have individual stairs that go back to back. Are these logical and sequential and, and is this staircase something that somebody wants to buy in the first place? That’s the other thing. Like, do they want that objective? Right? And some of that goes back into customer, you know, avatar and.
You know, customer research market research prior to even creating it in the beginning. But let’s say that you’ve done all of that and you knew what your course is gonna sell. The first thing is figuring out what it’s on and what are the individual lessons and individual steps that are gonna get them there.
And I like to break those down even further. So, Let’s say we figured out what the steps are. I like to do something which is a process called creating a focus question. And what creating a focus question does when we ask it, it does two things. One, it turns on the reticular activating system, the start of the lesson, and then two, it helps to summarize it at the end of the lesson.
So it’s creating like a learning loop, right? And it’s creating a pattern which is also reducing decision fatigue in the long run in the student. Okay. And it’s giving them like, okay, I know what to expect cuz when I start this I finish it. And when I start this, I finish it. When I start this I and each one goes for each lesson.
Now I said reticular activating system. Let’s go back to that. So just to explain that, I don’t know if you’ve ever been in a situation where like you get obsessed with a car and then literally see the car everywhere. So I really love red Porsche boxers. I don’t know why I saw one at the grocery store one day and I’m like, oh my God, I want that.
And now everywhere I go, I see red Porsche boxers. It might be my neighborhood, I’m not really sure, but everywhere I go, red Porsche boxers, that is my brain saying, red Porsche boxer and finding it. That’s the reticular activating system and it works in the opposite direction as well. So if you’ve ever been in the kitchen and you’re like, oh, I can’t find the salt, and then your, your spouse or your partner comes up from behind you and can like, reach past your head, pull the salt out and put it in front of your face cuz it was right there the whole time.
The fact that you told yourself that you can’t find the salt or the salt does not exist, right? It made it so your eyeballs could literally not see the salt. So that is the reticular activating system.
Chris Badgett: So, and how do we use that in like the furniture flipping example or furniture repair as the first step?
Oh yeah, yeah.
Dr. Carrie Rose: So like, okay, so if I was gonna use that in the re furniture pair, so. In creating, let me back this up a little bit, but I’ll make the tie-in. So in creating those stair steps, I’m using focus questions to go from one step to the next. And there’s just one more missing piece on that. Those focus questions need to start with how or why, and the reason being is you’re asking ’em at the beginning of the lesson.
You’re seeing by the time you finish this lesson, you’ll be able to answer the following question, and then you ask a question with how or why. And it is because you wanna keep their brain active and engaged the whole time. So if you were to say like, who is the 16th president of the United States? At the start of the video, and then in the middle of the video you say, Abraham Lincoln.
And then, then there’s like three more minute they found Abraham Lincoln, they shut off, they’re done. So who, which, when, where, what? Those questions don’t work for a focus question because their brain can shut off almost instantaneously. As soon as they find their answer, they’re done. They thought that that was the point.
Now they’re done. Okay, so you wanna ask questions that start with how or why, why being more analytical and how being more process oriented.
Chris Badgett: Like why would somebody ever buy furniture from you as that might be a thing.
Dr. Carrie Rose: Yeah. How can you find furniture to flip? Yeah. That would be at start of a lesson.
So now we’re just looking at searching, not even, not even getting to the point of refurbishing. We’re just looking at like searching for it. Right? And I don’t know enough about furniture flipping. I could say you could like go back even further and there’s probably, well somebody watching this might be like, ah, I totally know way more about furniture flipping you.
And if I were to do this. I would break that into a whole course and here’s how I’d do it. And there might be smaller Ys and smaller house. Right, to get them there. And that’s more like becoming an expert in. Your individual area. Like, I truly believe that if you’re not an expert in it, you should either spend more time studying it or teach something else.
So that’s, that’s my thing. Mm-hmm. You know, some sort of like efficacy of our own to make sure that we’re actually the experts in the things that we’re sharing, you know? But like, I think it’s possible for everybody to have a specialization that they can share, like down to tomato canning, like, I don’t know anything about tomato canning, but I would buy that course.
You know, cause I would love to learn about tomato canning. So it did, you know, I think there’s plenty of different areas for us all to be smart in. There’s even a theory called multiple intelligences that Howard Gardner came up in the eighties and basically it’s, everybody is smart and we have different ways that we’re smart in, so like there’s potential for all of us to create online courses.
I just, for me, like my belief is you should know it, right? But if you know it, then you’re able to tell like, is this, is this objective a. Something that they will wanna buy based on your market research. And then b, is it a complete process or they need smaller processes to really get to the bigger picture?
Then you might be looking at a course or you might be looking at a course bundle, right? So
Chris Badgett: I love that. Let’s go, go back to internet marketing, the vinn diagram of internet marketing and education. And you kind of mentioned one right there, I think with the reticular activating system. And marketing is kind of like an open loop where you kind of open this loop and you’ve revisited it later.
If, if somebody’s kind of new to internet marketing as an educator, you kind of found this new discipline and fell in love with it and got passionate and married it into your operating system, if you will. Yeah. What, what are some of the. Things from marketing that can really help educators be more effective in addition to like selling their course and stuff like that.
But what, what else can we glean from market, from marketers as teachers?
Dr. Carrie Rose: Okay, let me sit with this one. I think one of the things that I love about the marketing spirit is they will try. They will try, they will test and they will tweak, and they’re used to that. And I think that there’s beauty in that.
I think there’s beauty in just seeing, Hey, you know what? I don’t know if this is gonna work, but I’m gonna test it out. I’m gonna sell this to the first, you know, 10 people that are interested in, Hey, if you’re interested in learning this from me, I’m going to teach you X, Y, Z. That’s gonna get you from A to B, and this is how it’s gonna break up.
And we’re gonna test it together. And I may not be perfect every time, but you know, I know I can get you there. Let’s go. Right? And so it’s like marketers are willing to like run up walls and fall on their faces and they literally, they are the ultimate, you know, get knocked down seven times, standup eight, you know, type of people.
So I think there’s a lot of lessons from that that a lot of us in the, the more the education side are like, oh, we’ve gotta, like, everything’s gotta be perfect. And I’m like, no, everything doesn’t have to be perfect. In fact, if you look at your iPhone, I don’t, how many iterations are we. On this thing now, like I, I don’t, I don’t know, but it’s been a lot.
It’s not like a, I have a text now. It’s not, it’s not just one. It wasn’t like they sat there in the lab trying to figure things out forever and never put something out to test. They put it out. So what I’m describing is just a beta launch, but like marketers will just go, Hey, let’s throw something up.
Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, and you know, you have to make sure it’s still for the betterment of your students. You know that they’re getting access to you. But I think that just goes back to being the expert in it, you know? And providing feedback, you know, or having opportunities for them to provide feedback to you so you know how to make it better.
And when I say this, like most beta launches are priced at a lower price point, so that you know, and you tell them, Hey, when I do this, it’s going to be a grand, but for now it’s 500. Are you interested? You know, and so you’re telling them it’s not as, Defined. It’s not as perfect as I would like it to be, but I’m still gonna get you results.
We’re gonna do this more as a coaching than a course that’s set at this point in time, but then it’s going to be recorded or you’re gonna have access to the videos or something. But it’s just like a, you are fully aligned with an integral in your announcement to them about how you’re approaching it, but it also gives you the opportunity to just run at it and try.
Because most people sit there and spin their wheels. There’s like tons of analysis paralysis, there’s tons of that, like, you know, imposter syndrome. And so many people with like brilliant minds and amazing hearts sit on their courses and sit on their programs instead of just getting it out. And I think that that’s like really the beautiful lesson we can take for marketers.
Chris Badgett: I was just scanning the table of contents of your book, the completed course, which is available on Amazon. You out there listening, go grab yourself a copy. And speaking of copy, and speaking of marketing, there’s a, a piece in part two about current best practices that influence completion. And you say, start with copy.
So what. What are you, what, what is that? Is that referring to copywriting and, and helping you flesh out your ideas or
Dr. Carrie Rose: what? Yeah, so, okay. What happens in copywriting is a lot of the times when you ask a copywriter to make a landing page for you, let’s say you don’t, you don’t know how to do it. I don’t know how to do it anyways, so I’m not expecting anybody to know how to do it.
Copywriting is an art. Yeah. But like, say you, you ask a copywriter to create a landing page for you, they’re gonna create something that that sells. But it might not be accurate. And they don’t know cuz they’re not inside your course and they don’t know cause they didn’t build your course. Right.
They’re just kind of going off of you created a something that does a something. And honestly, I have worked with two marketing teams now that I had to end relationships with because they wanted to just sell in ways that I was not comfortable with. And a lot of it was, there’s a lack of alignment between what is actually going on and what you’re saying, and we couldn’t get that back to the same page.
So here’s my advice on this. When you get to the point where you’re figuring out your objectives for the course, like you’ve done your market research, you know your customer avatar, you’ve researched other competitors, you’ve decided what your overall objective is for your course, now you’re gonna look at it and figure out those focus questions.
Now at this point, you know what your course is gonna cover, cuz those focus questions. Are your lessons. Your lessons aren’t done yet. They’re not built out. But if you’re telling them by the time you finish this, you’re gonna answer this question, you’re building the lesson based on what the question is, now your job is just to answer the question for them and then have them answer the question afterwards.
Right? So at that point in time, you know what your course is gonna be. Go ahead and rate fo copy, I call it faux copy, sloppy copy, something that’s like a. Not gonna sell your course, but it’s going to be your hand on your heart promise to what is inside of the course while you’re creating it for your students.
So two parts is gonna help with that copywriter later, but at first it’s gonna help with your intention setting. Like how do you build something that’s true to what your promise is to them? There is so much with intention. I was messaging with Alex Sharpen the other day cuz he built this momentum planner that I’m just absolutely in love with and I’m using it every morning.
And I wrote down, I noticed, I wrote down, I was gonna show up excited for this meeting, and I messed up. I messed up so hard. I was running over this, this guy, everything he said, I, he thought there was a delay in the Bluetooth cuz I was so darn excited for the meeting. And I shared that with Alex and he laughed at me because he had had a similar experience, right?
And so I’m like going, oh gosh. But intention is such a powerful tool. So you’re setting the intention with the cop, the fake copy, the faux copy about what this course is going to be and what it’s going to do for others. And then when you’re done with it, you have something to refer to. So let done with, done with the course.
Like let’s say you built the course out, right? You can look back at that faux copy and say, does the course still cover this? Yes. No, you know, If it does now that is good to go ahead and send to an actual copywriter to make it ready to sell, cuz then they know what is actually going on inside of your course.
Not just go sell something, but like, you know, is this a direct match Because you’re gonna lose people based on copy because they thought it was something else. You know, you might lose people based on copy because they purchased it twice, you know? Cause I’ve had friends that have done that because they read a different something and they got excited about it and they bought something again, which is a better quality problem for the course creator.
Not a good problem for my friend. Right. So, but you know, looking at things in terms of like, is their integrity, is their congruence because when there’s not integrity or there’s not a congruence, Your students are going to feel disappointed, they’re gonna feel lied to. As far as completion rates. I don’t know that there’s anything that would get me to run away from a course faster than feeling I was lied to, or this wasn’t provided the way that it said on the copy.
Chris Badgett: I want to, I want to kind of tap your experience for the past, present, and future in terms of like the state of the online course industry. So you mentioned like kind of getting into it in 2012. Mm-hmm. Here we are 10 years later. Mm-hmm. 2032 is coming up in another decade. What’s different today from 10 years ago?
And then where do you see us heading 10 years out? Yeah.
Dr. Carrie Rose: So I mean, 10 years ago I think information was okay to sell. So that’s a biggie. Like recall was all the thing, all the courses I was watching. Here are the five things. What five things. These five things, what? Five things? Okay. Now you know, the five things, and so five things like, but that whole, and here’s
Chris Badgett: some bonus things,
Dr. Carrie Rose: some extra things, you know, stack of things and it doesn’t work anymore, right?
And also marketing isn’t playing out the same way that it used to anymore. So in all of the higher level masterminds that I’ve been in, the, the main conversation is L T V. So lifetime value of the customer. You’re looking more in terms of that customer journey and you know. This is especially important for non kitchen sinking to go back to that lesson, but making sure that you have multiple offers to provide the same person because they’re like 60% more likely to purchase from you again if they’re already happy with something they purchased in the first place.
So you don’t have to work as hard to keep a new client. If they’re happy as you do to get a new one. And that means a lot in terms of marketing dollars. And the reason that matters is like ad costs are going up everywhere, right? That’s, that’s always the thing you hear in terms of marketing. So if you want to make sure that you have a longstanding course business and not just a one-off course product, you’re going to really need to care about your, you know, your customer attention rate and your online, online course completion rates and making sure that.
Everything you’re offering is creating independence along the path towards. You know the end goal so that A to B or Sex Build Awesome Town just became Sex Build. Awesome Town, part one, awesome town, part two, awesome town part three, right? Like moving them forward and you know, building upon their experience and building upon their knowledge and going forward with you.
You know, I looked at a potential client a while back and we didn’t end up working together cause they sold their business cuz they also sold supplements and that part of the company really took off, but they were making a hundred mil annually on their online course sales. A hundred mil annually on their online course sales.
And they had a 3.9% completion rate on average, and they had multiple courses so they weren’t getting the same level of repeat customers cuz the people that were buying it were buying it based on marketing and never finishing it, never getting the results, and not purchasing other products. But they were making a hundred.
It’s, you know, like they were making it based on the marketing, but what would they have been making as a company? They might not have sold their company if we had fixed that one part before they decided to sell. Right. And so, I mean, that’s on some larger numbers. You can kind of like do the math on that.
If they were happy, what that be? What if their completion rate was 50% and 60% of that is likely to buy? Again, what, how, what would the numbers be in the, you know, if you, if they had gone forward, but. You know, in terms of where we are right now, I think for everybody it’s gonna matter your lifetime value of your customer and really getting really clear on that.
And then as far as the future, AI is gonna shift everything, you know? And I think in a really positive way for students. I don’t think, I’m not like scared like, oh, it’s gonna replace us. I think it’s more like it’s going to add to it, you know, what happens if people have different, you know, processes that they more identify with?
Right, like when I talked before about differentiating by process, what if the computer could do that for you? What if you could just type in like your preferences for learning or take this quick assessment and then the computer just goes, okay, here, well you get your course like this and now you have kittens that run across the screen every time you, you know, finish a lesson or whatever.
Cuz you said you really like cats. Like there’s gonna be different ways that we access learning that we’re just not able to do at this moment. The more technological advances that we make, I’m excited to see for where you take it, because like, it’s gonna be on the l m s platforms to really develop the potentiality, you know, but it’s just everything’s moving so fast.
And to say that tech isn’t a part of it, tech’s a huge part of it.
Chris Badgett: Since you brought up tech, you know, whatever LMS people are using, whether it’s think if or LifterLMS or Kajabi, or Teachable or whatever. What advice do you have around people approaching the tech? And one caveat I’ll just throw out there is, as a technology provider, I see a lot of people kind of overemphasize the tech or get into the tech too soon without like the strategy or the course content fleshed out or the idea or whatever.
Like what advice if you, you have somebody and you have their full attention and they’re kind of at the beginning of the journey, would you tell them at a high level to think about how to think about technology?
Dr. Carrie Rose: Yeah. I mean, well, everything goes through the fil this filter for me. So tech communities you know how the courts are structured.
Everything goes through the instructor, the content, and the students, right? Is it gonna be a benefit to all three? So when you’re looking at text specifically, how is it used on the end of the content developer? How does it demonstrate, you know, what is needed to get the instruction across for that specific content?
And then what’s gonna dev, what’s gonna be in the best interest of that student population? So it’s really just like you’re filtering it through that lens because. You know, in any of those decisions, and I’m saying tech now, but let’s just go back to communities for a second. My, my husband was asking me earlier today if I wanted to add a community in my course, and I don’t, but it’s just because, it’s not because I don’t think they’re valuable, it’s just because I don’t wanna promise the time.
I wanna add the time later when I feel like it’s a really good move, but I don’t wanna promise it in sales at the moment until I feel like I know that I wanna do it. You know, in the meantime, I still have one child in high school and I have a another, I have a stepdaughter that’s in middle school. Do I wanna promise more time going out?
No. For me, I don’t. And so I make decisions like that when I’m making them with my clients. Like, what do you really have that you’re comfortable with? If you’re not comfortable with, heck, you’re gonna want something that’s an easier platform. You know, if you, if you wanna do certain types of question bases, then you’re gonna need to have.
An LMS platform that handles those types of questions, and not all of them do. And some of them are highly complicated to be able to answer or ask certain types of questions. And then you’re gonna look at, well, how do you need your data collected? What data do you need collected in the first place? Right?
And some platforms do certain different things with that. So you need to look at it through all three lens to really select what’s gonna be in the best interest of you, your students, and your content.
Chris Badgett: You mentioned community, and I would also just kind of add the word coaching out there. I mean, I look at something like Masterclass where mm-hmm.
You have these like great experts, but it’s like $10 a month and you get all the content. But Steve Martin’s not gonna help you with your jokes or whatever. I know, but if he did, that would be fun. But the And like you mentioned, like for your community, you got, it’s a really serious time commitment.
It shouldn’t just be a bullet point you put on to help try to sell or increase the price. But besides like the business strategy there, what do you see the role of either one-on-one coaching or feedback or group coaching, or the whole cohort based courses thing? How does, how does coaching and community add to the completion and experience?
Dr. Carrie Rose: Oh gosh. Yeah. I mean, definitely it, it definitely adds to it. There’s data that suggests that, you know, just even the personal connection or the relationship from student, student to teacher, you know, has an impact on student outcome measures. So, You know, it absolutely adds to it, especially if you’ve, if you’ve got that kind of soul that people can feel, you know, like it’s one of those things like, now if you’re, if you’re naturally grouchy, that might not be your avenue.
So just to say that too, like, no thy self divine own self be true, you know? But, If you’re able to create, you know, something where people feel warm and welcomed and they feel listened to and they feel like they’re getting really solid feedback cuz you’ve created the right, you know, kind of student self-assessments and you just go over them with them in the coaching process.
So you provide that kind of value that they’re looking for, whatever it is, based on, you know, who your avatar is, who your audience is. I, I think there’s a world of possibility for that. You know, it’s, it’s more like, I think it’s one of those things that’s like, it’s there and it’s awesome and it’s really just do you have the bandwidth for it?
And if you don’t, don’t start with that. You know, most people get into online courses so that they can buy back their time in some way, you know? And so when you add a community feature, you are adding more things that are going to take your time or you’re gonna have to hire out. But as far as the benefits to the student, oh, it’s worth it.
It’s just like, it’s depending on where you’re at. It’s not to say that it’s not worth it or it won’t do anything. I’ve done online group coaching programs before and they’re actually some of my favorite things to do because I, I love that. Like, jump into somebody’s world, pick apart what’s not working, and like put it back together and go, here, this is gonna work.
Here’s your new baby. You know? And so, you know, and to do it in the, in a cohort kind of model where you get to build that. Those relationships with those people and like have an environment where people care about each other. I love that kind of thing. And it, it is definitely based in research that that helps and supports.
And as far as their learning and their progress and their completion for me, again, it’s, it’s still back to that personal choice. You know, it’s gotta be back to like, does that work for you?
Chris Badgett: How you mentioned a tactical thing. I just wanna make sure we get across what is the difference between a self-review and like a quiz to test, like knowledge comprehension or whatever.
Like what’s the difference there? Gotcha.
Dr. Carrie Rose: Okay. Yeah. I hate quizzes preference, but No, it’s just they’re so like, do you like them? I mean, do you like to take them? And that’s like each course creator, you just sit with that. You don’t like it personally? Not really personally, no. No. Like tell me somebody that ever has.
Adults are self-selected learners, so we just don’t really, you know, Like, let’s say you’ve got your, you’ve got your customer success path and you’re looking at your lifetime value of your customer. Well, if you put in a lot of stuff in your course that people don’t like, it reduces their need to wanna finish.
But aside from that, on a technical aspect of things, they’re not nor reference. So another nor long they’re neither reliable nor valid. Meaning there’s no statistical support to say that the test that you’re giving them in an online testing process is actually real. It’s usually something that we made up.
I, I have one potential client right now that was saying that she actually did a statistical review of one of her assessments to make it norm reference to go forward with it. And I was like, bless you. Like I, I adore you for going that far. But a lot of times in these programs you’ll see things that are totally made up.
In addition to that, they’re all right there questions, which is just like, It’s again, it’s like what? Five things? These five things, these five things go right. And so it, it’s in that box of recall that nobody cares about, but it’s not anybody’s fault. It’s just that we don’t know how to ask better questions in a multiple choice capa capacity.
So for people, does it do anything for them? No. Does it annoy them? Probably. And for you, it’s a giant waste of time. If anything, I think people feel like they need to have them in there because it makes it look official. The only reason I would put a multiple choice test in something is if it’s a certification.
If there’s some like credits that have to be given because of a passing score on a test. But even then, like be very, very careful with what those questions are and make sure you’re asking more than right theirs for that. But a self-assessment is totally different and it takes the weight off of it.
There’s still data it, it takes the weight off at a student, sorry, takes the pressure off of the student. They’re just grading themselves. They’re deciding how they did on something. And there is data to support students self-assessment in terms of increasing their growth. So it’s just a chance for them to look at like whatever project they’ve done, use some sort of a rubric element or a Likert scale.
So a rubric being a. You know, to what degree did you do something on all of these five points? It’s more complicated than that, but you can Google rubric and kind of look at that up. But a Likert scale is on a scale from one to five or one to 10, you know, how much of something would you say you are, or how much of something would you say you feel, or how well do you think you did on this?
You know, some sort of a question that is like for them to go, ah, maybe I give myself an eight. Well, if you gave yourself an eight, what do you need to do to get a 10? Well, I would need to. Right. I would need to adjust this, this, that, and that. And so people are pretty honest with themselves, or I like, again, I like to play to people’s better angels, but people are pretty honest with themselves about, you know, what they did or didn’t do, to what degree they did or didn’t do it.
You know? And so when you give them the opportunity to really look at their own work, That is way better than that hoop jumping thing, right? Is it? And now it’s talking about their application of the instruction that you gave them. And this is something you can put inside your course, and you can have them bring it to, you know, their coaching sessions or their cohort sessions, right?
Or, you know, like, Hey, maybe there’s a, an idea here. Maybe it’s even so like, Hey, if you scored yourself under a 10, what are the things that you thought would improve yourself? To give yourself a 10 and now everybody can see what those answers are, you know, and the community kind of function. So there’s like different ways to use a self-assessment.
It’s gonna be a lot more powerful than, than, yeah. I don’t like jumping, I did a lot of it to get a doctorate. Nobody likes it.
Chris Badgett: Well, maybe we can land a plane around psychology. I, I’m, I’m guessing you have some thoughts around this. There’s a challenge in the course creator industry of. Failure to launch the project, whether it’s fear of failure, fear of success, imposter syndrome, there’s a lot going on.
You know, it’s, I, I know a lot of people have the dream to write a book that never happens. And I think actually in the course space, the failure rate is even higher. Cuz in, in some ways, creating an online course can be more challenging than writing a book. But, What, what do you, what advice do you have or what have you noticed in terms of psychology or mindset that the people that you know, launch and iterate have, or how would you help people get over the hump of failure to launch or imposter syndrome and all that?
Dr. Carrie Rose: Yeah, that one’s a toughie. I, you know, and it’s usually, it’s, it’s interesting cause it doesn’t matter where they’re at in their business, like In our one-on-one course, build intensives. I work with mindset more often than not before we even start with objectives because it’s, it’s scary for people. It is.
It get scary and really and truly like I. I walk a lot in faith, I believe in a higher power. I don’t, you know, my mom always said there’s one and everybody worships it and source whatever you call it differently. And my physics teacher also said, die and ask God. So, you know, some, someone said the two of them.
So whatever your spiritual practices or beliefs are, I respect that and cool. But for me it’s like I don’t believe that source, God, universe, whatever you call it, would introduce you to something or give you the opportunity if it wasn’t for you. And I always keep coming back to that. You know, I, I believe that if, if I see something, if I see somebody else doing something, it’s possible for me.
And I believe that once I figured out that it’s possible for me. Then it’s probable for me. And once I believe it’s probable, for me. It’s already done. And it’s really a lot of faith. Like I’m not a high achiever cuz I really wanna be a high achiever. I’m a high achiever cuz I have a lot of faith and I just act on it and it doesn’t make sense a lot of the time, you know, and it’s hard for people that are getting started and the course creation industry because it’s not just that, that you’re dealing with when, when you get settled into that, when you’re seeing things for the first time and you’re like, oh, I can do that, that’s possible.
I could get there. You have to deal with everybody else around you who is saying otherwise. And it’s really interesting because whoever you know, they met you whenever they met you at whatever point in your life you were in. And usually there’s a length of time between, you know, point A to point B here.
You know, and so it, it’s so wild because like I’ll see people that I knew in high school and they remember me as myself from high school or people that I knew in college and they remember me as myself from college. Well, all of your friends and family remember you from like a couple weeks ago, or whenever it was, maybe as a couple years ago before you decided that you were gonna create an online course and become an online expert.
And there’s this thing called crabs in a bucket and basically, If you’ve ever seen a bucket of crabs, if one tries to climb out the others, like grab them and pull them back in. And that’s what starts happening with your friends and family around you. So it’s almost like you have to not, not cut them out or anything, but start to tune out the noise.
You know, listen to them for what you listen to them for, and then find other people that are doing what you wanna do. And tap into that energy and that level of possibility. I was sitting with, I’ll, I’ll use this to wrap it up as an example. It’s not course, course related, but it’s the same thing. It’s possible probable done and I was sitting out last night at, at a bar, but with one of my friends that came into town and is speaking at an event and wanted to meet up with my husband and I, and so we’re out and he is introducing us to his girlfriend.
And he said, it’s because of your love that I knew that that was possible for me. And I said, that’s so wild, because it’s the same thing that happened to me when I was in my late thirties. I got divorced, I’d never been in love before, yada, yada, yada. I see one of my friends from middle school and she’s online and she’s posting her pictures of her and her husband, and I’m like, This couple is so in love.
They love each other. This is like real, real. This isn’t fake. This is absolute love, this is real love. This is pure love. Oh my God, I want that. And it was because of her that I knew it was possible. Once they knew it was possible, it was probable, probable done. I met my husband like, I don’t know, maybe 10 months after I made that discovery.
Nine, 10 months later. And at my wedding, she was my maid of honor. But it’s that you, you are constantly shining a light for others, and you need to look for people who are shining a light for you. We’re all in this together. Nothing exists in a silo, and if you’re struggling with it, just keep surrounding yourself with all the possibilities because it wouldn’t have been put forth to you if it wasn’t meant for you at this time.
Chris Badgett: Dr. Carrie Rose, she’s at of course.us. And go get her book on Amazon or wherever you can get it. It’s the completed course, the Secret to Creating Lasting Impact Raving Fans and increased Profits with online Courses. Any final words for the people, Carrie, or other ways they can connect with you or, or potentially work with you?
Dr. Carrie Rose: Yeah, so I mean, on the website you can just. Pick your path in terms of if you’re wanting to work with us further, connect with me on Instagram. I sometimes post videos on there. I, I posted a lot. There’s a lot of videos on course creation on there as well as on TikTok at Dr. Carrie Rose. And no, thank you so much for having me and for such great questions today.
Honestly, I’m like, ah, I get to use my brain. This is fun. I really appreciate it.
Chris Badgett: Awesome. Well thanks for coming, Carrie, and sharing your wisdom with us. We really appreciate it. Thank you. And that’s a wrap for this episode of LMSCast. Did you enjoy that episode? Tell your friends and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss the next episode.
And I’ve got a gift for you [email protected] slash gift. Go to lifterlms.com/gift. Keep learning. Keep taking action, and I’ll see you. In the next episode.