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Social Media Blogs by Aliza Sherman

Social Media Blogs by Aliza Sherman

Aliza Sherman is a new media entrepreneur, author, women's issues activist, and international speaker.
Sherman has received recognition for her role as an entrepreneur focused on women's issues, particularly women's role in the new media industry and their participation on the Internet.

Social Training - Online Course Tools

Social Training - Online Course Tools

Any small business can be in the position of needing to provide training or educational materials. From demo videos for customers to training tools for new staff or sales team members, training tools have gone both online and social.

Whether you are offering a course to customers and prospects about dog training because you sell pet items, or you offer online crafting tutorials because you sell art supplies, you can now leverage teaching platforms to build, manage and promote your educational assets.

Here are a few teaching platforms that might work for you to internally train employees, clients or vendors or to provide externally to the public.

Pathwright offers “step-by-step learning paths for anyone.” You can create your own “school” for others to attend with a variety of courses that you build. Or you can set up a private internal training course or set of courses. Or set up a public information sharing resource for others. If you’re looking to generate revenue from the courses you offer, Pathwright has a payment collection feature.

Ruzuku is another online course platform. Set up interactive, multimedia classes with text, images, audio and video to engage participants. You can schedule your class for specific days and times and for any interval or duration or allow people to instantly access the entire course at once.

Prezi is like PowerPoint on steroids. Build a Prezi incorporating content, images and multimedia to create engaging presentations that you can keep private or allow anyone to access. You can also share Prezi’s on Facebook, Twitter or other social networks or simply via a link in an email.

Offering online courses isn’t just uploading a few files to a website. Take the time to develop a course outline and think about the additional materials you can add to enhance learning. Try to use all available multimedia assets at your disposal including text, images and graphics, audio and video.

For more technical lessons such as software or Internet instruction, consider creating “screencasts” or videos of actions that take place on a computer screen. You can capture video on computer screens using web-based tools such as Screencaster or a software product like Camtasia.

Depending on the tool you use to create your online course, you can also add polls, quizzes, and even forums for interactions between instructors and students if the learning is more “live” or near “real-time.” Otherwise, you can upload files in a format that learners can download onto their own computers as references.

Some things to keep in mind when developing online courses include:

  1. Hardware and Software. Know the type of computers and browsers the majority of learners will be using. Tailor your courses to accommodate a wider variety. Most learning platforms will operate cross-platform and cross-browser.
  2. Skill level. Not everyone is accustomed to taking courses online. For internal teams, instruction on how to use the training tools could be in order. For external customers, partners or vendors, providing some how-to documentation or a beforehand briefing may help.
  3. Connectivity. Most learning tools that incorporate multimedia and social features might require stronger Internet connections. If you know your audience has limited Internet connectivity, go easy on the bandwidth-heavy materials.

Online education is a great way to build skills, enhance knowledge and promote your company’s products and services. Remember to market any courses that are open to the public using all of your social media.

Read other social media blogs by Aliza Sherman

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