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So you’ve left things a little bit late for Christmas this year. It’s totally fine. It happens to the best of us. But the thing is, every time you turn on the TV or look at your phone you’re confronted by images of perfectly-planned, efficiently-schedule Christmases, and you can start to feel like you’re the only person in the world who’s slightly messed up. That is never true. People are busy, and loads of people are knocking Christmas out of the park at the last-minute. There’s no reason why you can’t be one of them.

Last-minute Christmas gift ideas:

Personalised mug

This tutorial from Designer Trapped in a Lawyer’s Body is specifically for a (super-cool) dotted pattern. However once you have a sharpie and a hot oven at the ready you can create pretty much anything. If you’re in a real last-minute panic and using mugs from home, though, don’t forget to make sure they’re plain and available for use.

Personalised tea-towel

There’s a bit of a theme developing here. But guess what? If you’re doing everything last-minute, personalised gifts are a great way to look super-thoughtful regardless of how much planning time you actually had. All you need is some fabric and some fabric paint or pens, as Lana Red Studio demonstrates perfectly. In fact, you could always expand this and create t shirts or cushion covers too. The possibilities are endless.

‘Night in’ set

This post from Smashed Peas and Carrots is actually for an ice cream sundae kit, but why stop there? Add a DVD , or some bubble bath (let’s be honest – we’ve all got unused bubble baths from Christmases past) and you have the makings of the perfect night in.

Other last-minute Christmas things

Cards

These great DIY cards from Pinjacolada are super-easy to make if you forgot to buy any. The great thing about making cards instead of picking up the last pack they had available in Paperchase is that (again) you look incredibly thoughtful. Plus, these cards just look great anyway.

Decorations

This post from DIY Enthusiasts has loads of fantastic ideas for how to create great Christmas decorations and centrepieces. They might not be specifically designed to be created at the last-minute but there are a whole bunch of ideas you can pull off with items you probably already have at home. You’ll look like a domestic goddess in no time.

So there you have it. Unfortunately there’s no way (that we know of at HowNow HQ) to fast-track the cooking of a turkey. However, pretty much everything else Christmassy can definitely be accomplished last-minute. And if all else fails, sprinkle a bit of glitter around and give everybody an extra glass of wine. They’ll never even notice the difference.

Merry Christmas!

Christmas is nearly upon us. It’s great to be able to spend a whole day with your nearest and dearest, but when the turkey’s all gone and the conversation’s started to die down in favour of you being given the third degree by your great aunt, you might find you need a quick distraction. Any game in this selection is the perfect way to make that happen. However, you probably won’t want to play Cards Against Humanity with your great aunt. Unless she’s awesome.

Heads Up

It’s a much more high-tech version of a classic game that involved sticking post its on peoples’ heads, but this time it’s in the form of an app. There are expansion packs being added all the time, so you’ll never run out of rounds to play. You’ll get a chance to see exactly how bad your nearest and dearest are at everything from accents to singing, so it has everything you could possibly need in an icebreaker.

Jackbox Party Pack

If you liked Blankety Blank or Call My Bluff, you’ll love Fibbage. If you like Pictionary, you’ll love Drawful. The Jackbox Party Pack is a high-tech take on classic games which involves everybody participating using their phone. You’ll need a central screen so it’s a great option for families where turning the TV off is not an option.

Speak Out

It’s this year’s hottest game, and it’s been sold out everywhere for weeks. The basic premise is that everybody takes it turns to have their mouths held open with dentist equipment. They then have to repeat phrases to the other players. Tey obviously sound ridiculous, there will presumably be a bit of drooling going on, and it’s going to be really funny.

Dobble

The most frustrating (in a good way) card game you will ever play. It’s a bit like a cross between snap and Where’s Wally. There are eight symbols on each card, and there’s always one that matches. Lay your cards in a pile like in a game of ‘snap’, and the first one with none left wins. If you manage to avoid tantrums while playing this on Christmas day you’re a better person than anyone on Team HowNow on a Friday afternoon.

The Tin Foil Game

An underrated classic, this game tests the artistic abilities of your family and friends. Pull the name of an object out of a hat and then sculpt that object using one sheet of tin foil. Think it sounds easy? It’s definitely not. There’s a reason all of the Romans chose to make sculptures out of marble.

Linkee

Another game causing controversy in the halls of HowNow HQ. Linkee involves answering questions, and finding the connections between the answers in order to win cards. The first team to pick up enough cards to spell out ‘Linkee’ wins. It’s part Trivial Pursuit, part a massively dumbed-down version of Only Connect.

Cards Against Humanity

The perfect card game for terrible people (ie. all of us). It’s rude, it’s gross, and it give everybody a chance to show themselves at their worst. Points are scored for being funniest, which means nobody can ever agree on who should win, lending an air of unexpected jeopardy to proceedings, which is always a bonus.

Pie Face

It was the super-popular board game for Christmas 2015, which means by now it’s probably just about back in stock again. It’s like Buckaroo, but with fewer horses, more whipped cream, and a bigger cleanup operation. More to the point, it’s a family friendly game, so it is nowhere near as sexual as it just sounded in our description.

Charades

Officially one of the biggest causes of family arguments in the past decade. That’s not technically a fact, but it does seem to cause a lot of conflict. It’s a great way to find out who in your family has never seen even the most mainstream of movies, who can’t understand basic instructions to be quiet and, more importantly, who’s had way to much of the Christmas punch to be rolling around on the floor reenacting The Matrix.

So what game will you be playing on Christmas Day or any of the lazy days following it?

The festive season is here again and everywhere you turn, people are buying stuff to get them into the Christmas spirit. We’re talking decorations, gifts, and all of the things you never knew you needed. But what if you want your Christmas to be more individual? That’s where craft projects come in. Luckily for you, we’ve scoured the internet and come up with some of the best simple festive crafts to make your Christmas stand out from the crowd.

Paperback Christmas Trees

Book purists, look away now. This festive craft project involves a fair amount of destruction. However, if the book is boring (because, let’s be honest, some of them are) and you’re never going to read it again, why not turn it into something pretty that’ll brighten up the room during the most wonderful time of the year? It’s also an excellent replacement if your flat is too small for a Christmas tree. And let’s face it, whose isn’t? Find the full tutorial here.

Wooden Sled Ornament

This is a great festive project to try with the kids. It’s also a great festive project to try if you spent the entire summer eating Twisters like there was no tomorrow and you need a way of hiding the evidence. It requires very little in the way of materials and will ensure that your tree looks unique rather than having the same old baubles as everyone else. Find the full tutorial here.

DIY Mason Jar Snowglobe

If you need a unique gift for that annoying person in your life who always gets you something really thoughtful and/or handmade, this might be it. Of course, we love that person. They’re a great person. But they’re difficult to buy for. So how about making one of these instead? They can display it proudly, and you could even make a personalised scene that’s relevant to their interests. Find the full tutorial here.

DIY Peppermint Candy Bowl

DO you love giving people sweets for Christmas but constantly find yourself wondering how you can make the process more unique, and also slightly more sticky? This is the festive project for you. It’ll take a little bit of effort, but so does anything good. And you know it will totally be worth it when your friends see your handiwork and think you’re a genius. Find the full tutorial here.

Wine Cork Reindeer

We all drink wine. There’s no hiding it, so we might as well embrace it. If you’re the fancy sort who buys wine with corks (or live in America where corks are still a thing) it’s worth hanging on to them so that you can have a go at making these super-cute critters. It’s also a good cover for when your kids ask you why you’ve been drinking so much. “I’ve been collecting art supplies for you, Timmy, god.” Find the full tutorial here.

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Which Christmas craft projects can’t you wait to try this year?

 

It’s officially getting festive, which means only one thing. The Christmas music is back on the iPod, cinnamon and ginger are everything, and if it isn’t covered in fairy lights and tinsel we don’t want to know about it. Actually, that might be slightly more than one thing. But, look. We just really like Christmas, OK? And while we get ready to mull everything in sight, here are a few bloggers we’ve come across who have created Christmas recipes that are off the charts:

  1. Spoon Fork Bacon

    We all remember that episode of Friends with the turkey sandwich, right? If not, here’s a memory jogger. It only seemed natural that somebody somewhere should have created the turkey sandwich with a moist maker in real life. And, lo and behold, here it is, just in time to make all of our Boxing Day dreams come true. Find the full recipe here.

  2. The Baker Mama

    Sausages wrapped in bacon are a staple of any self-respecting Christmas dinner. They’re never exactly bad, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to take them up a notch. That’s exactly what’s happened in this version with a maple pumpkin spice glaze. Yes. You read that right. Pumpkin spice not just for lattes. Find the full recipe here.

  3. Drizzle & Dip

    Mince pies are an absolute bloody classic. There’s no two ways about it. But does that mean they should be untouchable? Absolutely not. Just because something’s traditional it doesn’t mean it should be immune to being updated. Drizzle and Dip’s apple and mince pie crumble bars are a new twist on an old classic. Find the full recipe here.

  4. The View From Great Island

    Mulled wine is the best Christmas drink out there, but it’s a pain in the arse to make from scratch. It involves a lot of time spent slaving over the hob while everybody around you has fun. However, with this recipe you can just through everything in a slow cooker and have done with it. GeniusFind the full recipe here.

  5. Spend With Pennies

    OK, maybe jalapeno poppers aren’t the most festive of foods, but we love them with a passion. If we were going to throw a party they would be the first thing we served. This jalapeno popper dip keeps all of the flavour but requires a lot less valuable Christmas party time spent getting covered in chilli juice, and that can only be a good thing. Find the full recipe here.

  6. Daisies & Pie

    As far as we’re concerned,the perfect Christmas activity involves a ridiculous onesie, a sofa, and a stack of Christmas movies. Hot chocolate compliments that perfectly. But instead of another night spent with a mug of disappointing instant stuff, this peanut butter hot chocolate is the stuff that dreams are made of. Find the full recipe here.

  7. If You Give a Blonde a Kitchen

    Cookies abound at Christmas time. Whether you have a load of leftovers you want to do something with, or whether you want to dish out some cute homemade gifts, these sugar cookie truffles are a great way to get the maximum amount of sugary, Christmas fun in the smallest possible space. Find the full recipe here.

Christmas Have we missed anybody else who has awesome Christmas recipes to share? Let us know so that we can keep making amazing goodies to wow everybody at the office.

 

We’re all familiar with the concept of bloggers. They’re often called ‘influencers’ these days, and they lead spotless, minimalist, neatly-curated lives. Or, at least, that’s what it looks like on the surface. There’s nothing better than sitting down and reading through all of the new stuff in your Bloglovin’ feed, but sometimes it can leave you feeling cold as you read about one aesthetically-perfect life after another. Luckily, there are other bloggers out there. They keep it real. They give a glimpse into their actual lives the way they actually are. And, most importantly, they write about what they want to write about, rather than just covering the next trending topic. Our very own Nicola shares her favourite ‘keeping it real’ bloggers. Are you ready? It’s girl crush time.

1.The Daily Tay

Taylor Wolfe lives in Chicago with the best dog ever. Her blog is funny and gives an insight into the lives of people just makin’ it work in one of the best cities in the world. She writes about animals and life as a freelancer, as well as whatever happens to be on her mind on any given day. Her Snapchat is also one of the only ones I properly follow. Oh, and there’s also the t-shirts. She’s just great in pretty much any medium.

2. The Bloggess

Not only does Jenny Lawson run a hilarious blog, but she’s also written two books, which have spent an absurdly long time in the Hew York Times best seller list (this is not absurd at all. They are both great.). She writes about dealing with mental illness, so-bad-it’s-great taxidermy, and her small menagerie of brilliantly-named animals, among other things. Whether she’s making me laugh or cry, she’s always on my ‘to read’ list.

3. Superlatively Rude

You might recognise Laura Jane Williams’ name from her recent book, ‘Becoming: Sex, Second Chances, and Figuring Out Who the Hell I Am‘. Or her Grazia column. She first gained my admiration with Superlatively Rude’s tagline, which is “Because none of us is fucking up like we think they we are, is what I’m trying to say”. That basically sums everything up really, doesn’t it? She’s getting shit done and she’s taking us along for the ride.

4. Girl Stole London

Around four weeks ago, Lauren Mahon was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her Instagram was always great anyway, but now she’s giving us all a glimpse as she navigates her treatment. She gives an insight into the bad days just as much as the good, which isn’t something you always see, and she’s absolutely kicking butt while she does it.

5. Roots and Refuge

If you’ve ever fantasised about jacking it all in, moving to the countryside, and growing your own, then Jessica Sowards is living the dream. And, as with anything, its a little bit rougher around the edges than Tom and Barbara from The Good Life always implied it would be. With Roots and Refuge, you get a warts-and-all insight into the modern homesteading lifestyle and everything that come with it. Plus, there’s loads of animal posts, and those are always fun.

6. Deliciously Stella

Bella Younger’s Instagram account is the antidote to all of the clean eating, fitspiration bloggers out there. Not that photos of avocado on toast aren’t great but, y’know, there’s more to life. Deliciously Stella raises a laugh through a heavy use of both sweets and puns, which are two of my favourite things. She also did an awesome show at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, so you should keep an eye out for that in case it comes to town.

7. Humans of New York

It doesn’t get much realer than actual stories from the lives of everyday people. At Humans of New York, it’s members of the general public, rather than bloggers, that take centre stage. They post a picture of a random person every day, who then shares something about their life. Sometimes it’s uplifting, sometimes it’s tragic, sometimes it just makes you realise that you’re a garbage human being in comparison. But it’s always interesting.

…But HOW.

So. Real talk. Who is your favourite blogger? I’m always looking for great people to follow. And yes, I really am using this company blog post for my own personal gain. Because I am a professional like that.

 

It’s great to start the day with an early morning yoga class. At least, it’s great if you’re a morning person. It might be traumatic having to get up, but we soldier on. Sometimes we might even find a little bit of relaxation in the process. Of course, being based in London, that generally lasts all of seven seconds. But those seven seconds? Amazing. Here are some of the thoughts we’ve definitely had during early morning yoga. Please tell us we’re not the only ones.

  1. This is too early.
  2. I hope I don’t fall asleep if we have to lie on the mat.
  3. If I do, what if I snore?
  4. I can’t believe people do this every day.
  5. Man, I wish I looked like that person.
  6. Do I have to take my socks off?
  7. Do people seriously do this every day?
  8. No. I am an empowered, confident person who does not have these thoughts.
  9. I really do wish I looked like them, though.
  10. Ooh, they’ve got their own yoga mat. I bet they’re, like, a pro.
  11. Are they going to play this music the whole way through? This isn’t-
  12. Oh, actually, this is quite relaxing.
  13. Oh my god, I can’t even touch my toes.
  14. Can I Instagram this? People should know I did this.
  15. I bet that person’s t-shirt never rides up.
  16. Stop staring at that person’s arse.
  17. Wait. What was that? I wasn’t listening.
  18. I don’t have a practise. Should I tell them I don’t have a practise? What’s a practise?
  19. Wait, my leg’s supposed to go where?
  20. Don’t fart, don’t fart, don’t fart.
  21. Don’t giggle, don’t giggle, don’t giggle.
  22. Man, this is actually pretty hard.
  23. I am a warrior in my warrior pose and my warrior name is Beyonce Pad Thai. I should probably get my own warrior name and stop stealing Mindy Lahiri’s.
  24. Why do people need hot yoga when normal yoga makes me sweat this much?
  25. Am I thinking too much?
  26. How does everybody just know what this stuff means?
  27. I wonder if the candles have ever set anything on fire.
  28. Seriously, don’t fart, don’t fart, don’t fart.
  29. I wish I’d eaten something before I got here.
  30. Seriously. Did anyone else just hear my stomach rumbling?
  31. I should definitely book my yoga retreat when I get home. I wonder if they’ll let me have three months off, or if I should just quit. How much would it cost to get to the Andes?
  32. Was I always this tall?
  33. *Mental Facebook status drafting*
  34. *Mental ‘I’m so relaxed and cultured’ tweet planning*
  35. I am now officially relaxed. I am calm and centred. Woe betide the first motherfucker who ruins it.

Don’t forget…

If the group class experience isn’t for you, you can book individual sessions with awesome yoga experts through HowNow. The beauty of that is that you don’t even have to leave the house – just put your mat on the floor next to your bed and roll onto it when it’s time to get going!

Facebook ads are a great way to promote your HowNow classes. If you have a Facebook page you have everything you need to set up adverts and make sure as many people as possible see what you can do. Here’s a step-by-step guide to setting up a campaign:

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Visit your ‘Adverts Manager’ account on Facebook. If you have a Facebook page for your company, you’ll see this in the menu on the left-hand side of your Newsfeed. If you don’t yet have a Facebook page set up, you’ll need to do that first. Click on the green ‘create advert’ button in the top right-hand corner.

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Pick what you want your ad to achieve. There’s a load of options to choose from, but to promote your HowNow class specifically, you might want to try selecting ‘send people to your website’.

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Give your campaign a name to help you track its success and click ‘continue’.

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Now you’ll create your audience. You can target your add to people in, or even just visiting, specific locations if that’s what you want to do. However, do keep in mind that because your class is online it can be taken from anywhere.

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You can also choose the ages, gender, and language of the people you want to reach.

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After that, it gets interesting. You can choose people depending on their specific interests. If it’s possible to ‘like’ something on Facebook, it’s possible to target an ad to reach fans of that subject. If you’re a yoga or guitar teacher, that’s a good place to start. If you’re teaching business, you could target people who like The Apprentice. This is where a good knowledge of your demographic comes into play. You can save your audiences to use again, or create a new one each time if you’re feeling experimental.screenshot-129

Using the ‘Connections’ drop-down menu you can then choose if you want to target just the people who like your page or people who’ve never heard of you.

Step 5

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Once you’ve got your audience it’s time to decide on a budget. This can be per day or for the lifetime of the ad so make sure you’ve checked this over before you let your ad go live. You could spend as little as a fiver or as much as you like, really. It’s totally up to you. Facebook will never charge more than the budget you set, so there’s no need to worry about it going rogue.

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Decide what you want Facebook to charge you for. This can be either link clicks or impressions. When you get to this part of the Advert Manager it’s wise to work with Facebook’s recommendations if you’re not familiar with the process. As you get more comfortable you can play around more.

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Choose your image. If you have a high quality image, that’s great.

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If not, Facebook also have a library of stock images you can use. Beware of images with too much text. Facebook used to ban any images with more than 20% text. That’s not the case any more but they do warn that ads that have images with too much text will be shared less.

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If you’re advertising your class, the ‘website URL’ box is the place to share your class link. That way, when people click on your ad they’ll be taken straight there. After that you’ll fill in a headline and the text for your ad. Your headline and text character limits will vary depending on the kind of ad you’re producing.

After that, you’ll have the option to preview your ads, and then once you’ve confirmed you’ll be away! It’s great fun to see what kind of results you can get for different kinds of ads.

The other kind of Facebook ad that’s super-easy to create and doesn’t even require you to spend time in the Advert Manager is a promoted post. If you’ve created a post and think more people should be able to see it, this is the option for you. Facebook’s algorithms work in such a way that this is basically the only way to guarantee that your content gets the attention it deserves.

Promoted Posts:screenshot-142

Find the post you want to boost and click the ‘Boost post’ button.You’ll choose and audience and a budget just like you did when setting up a full Facebook ad.

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While your boosted post is still being promoted, and after your campaign has finished, you’ll be able to see exactly how many people you reached. When you view your results you’ll see more details about exactly who engaged and how, which can be vital information to use when planning future ads and deciding who should be in your audiences.

So there you have it! Promoted posts on Facebook are great to advertise your classes, and you can create campaigns to suit any budget. We can’t wait to see what you come up with!

There’s a whole host of social media accounts and blogs dedicated to healthy lifestyles, whether that be fitness, nutrition, or a combination of the two. With so many out there, who should you be following? We recommend some of these people:

Jessamyn Stanley

Jessamyn Stanley is awesome. She started documenting her yoga journey on Instagram in order to check her alignment, and has quickly become an inspiration to women everywhere. She now teaches all over the world, and is also a body positivity advocate. Jessamyn encourages people to think ‘how does this feel?’ instead of ‘how does this look?’ while practising yoga.

Chocolate Covered Katie

You know how desserts are the best? Well, Chocolate Covered Katie does. She has loads of recipes for all kinds of sweet treats. The best, though, is that they’ve all been given a healthy twist. Sugar and syrup are replaced by healthy alternatives, and everything is still bloody delicious.

Minimalist Baker

Dana Shultz shares recipes for healthy food which is usually plant-based of gluten-free. So far, so standard. However, the best part about The Minimalist Baker is that she really does mean ‘minimalist’. Every recipe uses 10 ingredients or less, 1 bowl, or less than 30 minutes of your time, so you can make nutritious food without a lot of faff.

Fit Bottomed Girls

Erin Whitehead and Jenipher Walters have a website with everything from recipes to awesome playlists to get you fired up. Their Instagram is funny and full of motivation. They also have a podcast. There’s even an Anti-diet book. Basically, whatever you’re looking for in terms of motivation, you’ll find it thanks to Fit Bottomed Girls.

Deliciously Ella

You’ve probably seen her own brand of healthy energy balls in the shops. If not, you might have seen one of her three healthy eating cookbooks. Or perhaps you’ve seen the deli she’s been able to open in London because of her huge following. There’s no denying that Deliciously Ella is everywhere, and she’s great at what she does.

Fully Raw Kristina

If you like your healthy food looking bright and cheery, there’s nobody better than Kristina Carillo-Bucaran. Her Instagram feed and Youtube channel are super-bright and some of her recipes are super-tasty. She even has her own organic co-op, if you happen to be based around Texas.

Kayla Itsines

Kayla Itsines has a following of 10,000,000 women, and she has that for a very good reason. Users who are signed up to take part in her various programs are given targeted exercises to incorporate into theirworkouts, as well as a selection of recipes to cook every day. It’s like having someone hold your hand and guide you.

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If any of these guys have inspired you, don’t forget that you can find personalised advice on healthy eating and fitness from our awesome HowNow experts. Happy health-ing!

Once you’ve decided to teach classes on HowNow, and you’ve planned what your lessons will be like, it’s time to post your class listing. This is what students will see when they make their bookings, so a great listing is crucial. Luckily, we put together a guide for how to complete each section.

Title and description

class listing

The first thing you’ll need to come up with for your class listing is a title and a one-line description. These appear on the browse pages so they need to be compelling to attract users to click. Try to avoid having a one-word class title, or using the words ‘one-to-one’, ‘group’, or anything like ‘class’ or ‘lesson’. Students will already know that it’s a class by the fact that it’s on HowNow, and you’ll use your tags to let them know if it’s one-to-one or for groups. Try to make your one-line description long enough to fill the space available – so about 100 characters.

Header image or video

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You have the choice between adding a video introduction to your class or adding a header image. These appear within the class listing itself. If you add a video, make sure you introduce yourself and what students will learn in the class. However, avoid going into so much detail that people no longer feel the need to make a booking. If you decide to add an image instead, make sure it’s a high quality one. Avoid images with a white background, and images which are actually a lot of text. If you want to use a logo, the place to do that is as your profile picture rather than as a header image.

Overview

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This is the section where you can give users an idea of what your class offers without going into specifics. This overview needs to apply to people who are visiting your class listing to book their tenth session just as much as it applies to total beginners, so keep it general and use lots of keywords because those will help your SEO. You might choose to give a bit of information about your teaching technique, or what a student will gain from a series of sessions with you.

What you need

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The next section you’ll come to when writing your class listing is ‘what you need’. This lets the student know what they’ll need to have access to before they take your session. You need to give them the best possible opportunity to get prepared before the day, so list everything. You might have a long list or a very short one. It may be that you don’t require your students to have anything. All of these are fine, just make sure you’re transparent in your listing.

Pricing, keywords, etc.

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This part of your class listing will actually appear at the top of the page next to your header. This is where you can let people know what levels you can teach, what languages you teach in, and how much you charge. You should also add keywords, but definitely avoid using words like ‘lessons’, ‘classes’ and ‘online’. Everything on the site is an online class so these won’t help you to stand out. Make sure your keywords refer to the content of the class.

What to expect

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Make sure that your class listing lets people know what to expect in your sessions. If you are teaching both one-to-one and group classes, try to let people know what the differences between the formats will be. Once you’ve done that people will be able to decide which type of class they’ll be happier taking part in and a comfortable student is a goof student.

Availability

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It’s vital that you connect your Google calendar to HowNow. This is the easiest way for you to let us know when you’re available. A great class listing will give potential students a lot of time options. By having as much free time in your calendar as possible you maximise your chances of getting bookings.

Ultimately, your HowNow class listing is the place to sell yourself. Don’t be afraid to brag, but don’t forget that you also need to appeal to total beginners who might not know what you’re talking about. That’ll soon change after your first session, though.

Musical instruments are often something we quit while we were at school. After all, we thought we were cool back then. What we didn’t realise is that musical instruments, which were once the bane of our lives, would seem cool again one day. Plus, there’s great benefits to learning them. But which one should you pick up if you want to start learning now?

Guitar

The guitar is probably one of the most common musical instruments adults decide to learn. After all, who hasn’t had a fantasy about taking the stage at a rock gig at one point in their life? The great thing about learning to play the guitar is that you don’t necessarily need to learn to read music to go along with your new skill. It’s a bonus, but not necessary, which makes guitar seem more accessible to complete newbies.

Ukulele

As musical instruments go, this one is one of the most beginner-friendly. Take a guitar, subtract two strings, make it smaller, and imbue it with the ability to create mental images of Hawaii and you basically have a ukulele. It has the same benefits as a guitar in that it’s relatively easy to learn and doesn’t need the ability to read music. It’s also a lot more portable. However, you will probably find yourself talking about George Formby more than you expected.

Piano/Keyboard

We’re willing to bet that this is one of the musical instruments most commonly given up while people were still at school. It is, after all, quite big and generally requires the ability to read music. Luckily keyboards, at least, have come a long way since then. They’re now very portable in many cases. They’ll even guide you through playing a simple song using light-up keys. You could be the next Elton John before you know it.

Drums

Do you love a good rhythm? Do you hate your neighbours? The drums are the musical instruments for you. They come in various forms, from the full-on kit to individual ones like the tabla. You’ll be surprised by just how many different sounds you can get out of one piece of kit. As will your neighbours. This is not the instrument for those living very close to other people, unfortunately.

Flute

If you can make a sound by blowing across the top of an empty bottle, you already have the basics of playing the flute down. It looks like a complicated object, but it’s really easy once you get the hang of it. It’s another instrument that will need you to learn how to read music, but that doesn’t have to be an obstacle – a great teacher will be able to get you started with that too.

musical instruments

So, what musical instruments do you fancy having a go at? Don’t forget to keep an eye on HowNow for a chance to take great music classes with experts all over the globe.