Category

Getting Started

Category

You will need:

  • Your own website
  • Active social media channels
  • Existing network of followers/other professionals

Steps:

Connect everything

Make sure your social networks and website have been added to your HowNow profile. Add a link to your HowNow profile to your website and social media profiles. Let your existing network know what you’re up to as well, in case they’re up for it.

Make it pretty

People are shallow. Whenever you have to use an image, make sure it’s high quality and a good illustration of what people will actually be doing when they take one of your classes. Your website and social media platforms should also be well-designed and any pictures you use there should be of equally high quality.

Start sharing everywhere

Once you’ve got your class listed on HowNow, share it on your website and also on all of your social media profiles. Don’t forget to include a link so people know how to find you. Your network will be able to take your classes, but it will also enhance their perception of you as an expert in your field, so even if they’re not your future students it can make a good impression.

Keep sharing everywhere

once you’ve built up a bit of momentum by sharing your classes online, keep doing it. The easiest way to let people forget about you is to stop sharing your projects, so it’s definitely something to avoid. You might feel like you’re repeating yourself, but there’s so much content being shared online these days, that some people won’t have seen your first, second, or even third posts.

Promote your other projects

One of the bonuses of teaching a class through HowNow is that, for that hour, you have a captive audience. If you have other projects or products to promote, by all means feel free to do so. It’s another situation where having your website connected to your profile can work wonders. Once a student has been inspired by you, they know exactly how to find out more. They might even buy your products.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: It’s awesome that you want to join HowNow as an Expert. We can’t get enough of the variety of awesome things to learn on the platform and we’re thrilled you want to add your expertise to the platform. Once you’ve signed up you’ll be ready to list your first class and, since we want you to be as successful as possible, we’ve put together a list of things to remember as you do that:

Basic Information

The title, tagline, categories, and image are the first things that users see when they browse – make sure that they are appealing and informative.

Title

Avoid using the words ‘class’ or ‘lesson’ in your title as all the activities available on HowNow are classes. It’s better to give a specific indication of the class, for example ‘Guitar for Beginners’.

Tagline

You don’t need to use hashtags or keywords here. This is just a short line to further explain your class, like the strapline on a film poster. Try and write something that’s different to the title and indicate what they would be aiming in the lesson. For example: Learn to strum your favourite tune.

Overview

Don’t just copy and paste! It’s fine to use material from your own website. Just make sure that it’s relevant. Bear in mind that new people will be seeing your listing, not just your followers and fans who know what you offer already. Write an overview as if you’re describing your class to someone who’s never tried your activity before. Will they understand or have you used lingo which will need explaining? Don’t try to be salesy, be specific. Members are more impressed finding out exactly what they will learn rather than vague ‘this is the best guitar class’ comments.

What do you need?

This is the section to list what your students will need to have in time for your class (for example, if you’re teaching cookery, what ingredients will they have to have?). Make sure you list this clearly so that you don’t end up with a group of confused and un-prepared students.

What to expect

You’ve given a general overview about yourself and your subject, but this is where you can get into the nitty-gritty of exactly what a student can expect to learn. It’s good to be detailed here so that your students will know that this is the class they want to take.

Categories

Only select categories that are relevant. It may be tempting to select all the categories in the hopes that this will increase your chances of people finding your class, But for people who are interested in your activity, the irrelevant categories will look weird on your listing page. It’s also very unlikely to convert members who were looking for something totally different but just happen to stumble upon your class in the wrong place.

Keywords

This is where you should list relevant words. The more specific you can be, the better. It will help people who are searching for your activity to find your class.

Pricing

As there are no costs for running your classes (venue, materials for users), users will expect sessions to be cheaper than if you were running the class in a physical location. As you start out, we recommend that you make your classes affordable to help get reviews and build your reputation within the HowNow community.

Images

The first thing that our members see when they browse for activities are the photos. If they see good quality photos of people doing the activity and having fun, they’ll be more likely to book. It’s better to not include your logo, text or a marketing material, as your business name will already show in the thumbnail. Don’t worry, there will be plenty of opportunity for users to find out about you on your listing page.

Reviews

As you’re getting started, it’s really important to startgetting reviews. The best way to do this is to share the news that you’re offering online classes to your mailing list and friends. Nicely ask them to try it out and leave reviews for you!

class

A lot of your class’ success will depend on it being listed well on the site. After all, that’s where you’ll be able to give enough information to convince somebody to try it out. By following these steps you’ll be giving yourself the best possible chance of succeeding on HowNow. And if you need more tips all you have to do is ask.

Time Management is a huge factor when it comes to Getting Shit Done (capitalised because it’s important). The problem is that the world is very distracting these days, which makes it difficult to stay productive. So what do you do when the work is piling up but there’s just one too many Netflix series to be binged at the same time.

Time Management Tip No. 1

Know how you work best. Do you need everything to be dead silent to get through your ‘to do’ list, or do you need a pumping soundtrack of 80s classics in the background. We’re not here to judge. Once you’ve identified what you need to have in order to be able to work, do yourself a favour and provide it. If you need to move, move. If you need earplugs, get earplugs. It’s worth it in the end.

Time Management Tip No. 2

Set work/break times: Realistically, what we’re saying here is ‘bribe yourself’ if you know a task is going to take an hour, promise yourself you can have twenty minutes off afterwards. It’s better that than sitting and staring at your screen for three hours while you half-work and half-skive. Commit to working flat-out for a period of time, and then being lazy for a little while. Maybe there’ll even be cake. Oh yeah, and buy cake.

Time Management Tip No. 3

Be realistic about how long stuff takes: If you say a task will take half an hour, do you really mean it? Most of us underestimate the length of time it takes to do basically anything. It doesn’t mean you’re underachieving, but you need to be realistic. If you’ve got seven tasks that you estimate will take one hour each, but that you know deep down will take at least two, you don’t have one day’s work on your hands, you have two. That isn’t going to work, and it’s likely to make you panic and procrastinate, so make sure you’re giving yourself the time you actually need to the things you actually need to get done.

Time Management Tip No. 4

Don’t take on too much: In the same vein as being realistic, don’t take on too much work. People will understand if you tell them you’ve got too much on (after all, there’s a reason they’re not doing it all for themselves), but if you just don’t deliver without letting people know why you’re going to start giving a really bad impression.

Time Management Tip No. 5

Don’t struggle if it’s not working: We all have bad days. If you’ve been staring at a screen for ages and not concentrating, sometimes it’s worth stepping away for a while and coming back. Sure, if you leave the office for an hour, people might question it. But if the choice is between refreshing your screen for the rest of the day without getting through any work, or taking an hour out and then coming back and smashing it, we all know which one most people would ultimately prefer. Treat yourself.

Time Management Tip No. 6

If you’ve tried everything and you still find yourself sitting on Youtube and watching old blooper reels, get rid of the internet. There are loads of apps you can use to block time wasting websites (i.e. all of the good ones), and many even offer you the option to block all internet access for a certain length of time. If your phone is the issue, put it in another room. You’ll survive without it for a while, and when you’ve finally finished your task you can use it to let all of your friends know how awesome and productive you are.

time management 2

 

These are just a few suggestions which we hope will help you to get shit done when that’s what you need to do. For more help, check out advice from experts on HowNow. What do you do when the tasks are piling up and you need to get through them super-quickly?

So you’ve decided to become an Expert and start teaching classes through HowNow. We can’t say we blame you. It’s a great idea to earn some extra income and to build a brand for yourself. But how do you get started? The great news is that we’ve kept it simple. You just fill in a form and you’re good to go. However, there are a few super-easy tips you should know about to make sure you maximise your success on HowNow.

Success Tip 1:

Make sure the contact details on your profile are complete and keep them up-to-date. Hosts with a fully-completed profile (photo, contact number, email address) look much more organised and reliable than those with empty spaces.

Success Tip 2:

Be punctual! If you know that you are hosting a class, make sure that you are online at least 10 minutes before to ensure that you have the correct equipment, that you’re happy with your set up, and that your camera and mic are working.

Success Tip 3:

Practice makes perfect. If this is the first time that you are running an online class it’s worth practising the structure of your class with friends and family to find what best works for your activity. Run a practise session, gather their feedback and act on it.

Success Tip 4:

Pick an appropriate profile image. If you are an individual without a brand (yet) and are just hosting under your name, it’s best to use a clear, professional-looking photo of you so that our members can get an idea of who they’ll be seeing on their screen on the day of their class.

Success Tip 5:

Having positive reviews is a great way to increase your bookings. When you get started, it could be a good idea to get in touch with your existing followers and announce that this is a new service that you are offering. Give them a discount and then you can get their reviews. If you don’t have existing followers, don’t be put off. You might just have to do a bit more marketing to bring people in in the first instance.

Success Tip 6:

Make sure to fill in your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter handles on your profile so that we and our members can follow you on social media. We will also be able to tag you in any marketing features that you are in.

Success Tip 7:

Make sure that you feel comfortable using the How Now platform. It’s important to know how to manage your bookings to avoid any issues on the day of your session. We will offer demos for using the platform but it’s always good to practice before your first session.

social media

We can’t wait to see all of the awesome stuff you have to share on HowNow!

So. You’ve decided you want to make a bit of extra money, and you’ve realised that HowNow is the way to do that. You love the idea of e-meeting people from all over the world online. You want to teach, and you can’t wait to start inspiring people. However, you’re not quite sure where to start.

So what should you teach?

For some people, the answer to that question will come straight away. We’re all very happy for you and your confidence in your skills and expertise. But if you’re not sure what you should be calling yourself an ‘expert’ in, that doesn’t mean you can’t get involved.

The first thing to mention is the fact that, as long as you’re open in your class description, you don’t have to have an actual qualification in the subject you want to teach. If we’re honest, we’re way more interested in real-life experience than certificates. So what are skills or specialist subjects? Maybe you can make a cake worthy of any Bake Off. Perhaps you live in a tourist hotspots, and can teach people from other countries what life is like in your city. You might be brilliant at Photoshop. All of those are valid. Try making a list of everything you know a lot about, and everything you like to do in your spare time. You’ll probably find there’s something there.

Some skills are less tangible. Maybe you work in an office all day and are fantastic at dealing with people from all walks of life. Guess what? That’s something lots of people would like to learn. Maybe you have a lot of self-confidence. Therefore, you might be confident enough to believe you could teach other people to feel the same way. Go for it. You could be a productivity ninja with wisdom to impart. We’ll be first in line. Ultimately, as long as you can plan a lesson around your skill, we’d love to have you on board.

In conclusion…

What we’re trying to say is that, with HowNow, the world is kind of your oyster. You don’t need a fancy teaching qualification to call yourself an Expert, and you don’t even have to be practicing what you preach full time. All you need is a plan, a spare hour of an evening or weekend, and something to share.

We’ll do the rest.

SEO is a complicated beast. Google is constantly changing their parameters in order to weed out people who take shortcuts to rank higher. This means that the requirements for good SEO are always changing. However, there are a few basic things you can do to give you the best possible chance of ranking.

Have a high-quality site

Google’s definition of exactly what defines a ‘high quality site’ changes a lot. However at the very least they want to know that the people visiting your site will be satisfied with what they find. That might involve lots of additional content, or just straightforward information displayed simply. It depends on each individual business. You’ll be penalised for not making sure everything is mobile friendly. You should definitely avoid naughty things like hidden backlinks and too many forced third-party ads.

Use keywords

So you want your post to stand a chance of ranking when a user searches for a certain topic. You need to be using keywords associated with that topic (shock, horror). For example, if you were writing about baking, you need to make sure you actually use the word a lo. It’s not something that should cause much panic, since you’ll mention what you’re writing about when you write about it. Google’s bots tend to scrape the first few lines of each piece of content, so make sure you make a few references to your subject matter in the first few lines. However, you also remember to keep it sounding natural.

 Have your keyword in your URL

In much the same vein as the previous point, make sure that your keyword appears in the URL of the page. Whichever CMS you’re using, you should be able to edit your URL to make it say what you want it to. It also helps to bear in mind that once you’ve settled on a URL, it’s best not to change it, because it goes without saying that you’ll be sharing it across your thriving social media channels. Don’t have those yet? No biggie. Check out how to get started here.

Use Plugins to help you

If you’re using WordPress there are plugins that can help guide you through the process of implementing great SEO. For each post you write, plugins like Jetpack will keep track of how many times you’ve mentioned your keyword. They’ll also remind you to add in anything you’ve forgotten, like those pesky pictures. You’ll be able to update your meta description so that you can make it something attractive to your demographic, rather than simply the 160 characters that just happen to get picked up by Google’s bots.

Keep your site active

We’ve mentioned that you could benefit from having a good level of extra content on your site, and that’s one way to keep it active. If that’s not something you’re going for, you at least need to be keeping all of your information up-to-date. This allows the the powers-that-be (Google) to see that you’re still maintaining the site. If they don’t see any signs of activity they’ll question the quality of the UX, and if you’re not careful you might see your account slipping down the rankings.

seo

Like we mentioned at the beginning of this, the rules for SEO are constantly changing, which makes it difficult to stay on top of everything. The thing to bear in mind, though, is that Google are ultimately looking for high-quality sites with good information. As long as you have one of those, you’ve got off to a great start with SEO. If you’re looking for a more in-depth insight, check out HowNow to find experts who can teach you.