In today’s episode, we have Sarah Cordiner with us and she is going to share her amazing journey from having little hope of her future to becoming the youngest university director in Australian history.
You will also get to hear the three key elements that pulled her out of a downturn in her life, expert strategies for creating and designing your online course, and how the recent pandemic has created new opportunities for togetherness around the world.
In this episode, you will hear...
… Sarah’s amazing journey from having little hope of her future to becoming the youngest university director in Australian history.
… the three key elements that pulled her out of a downturn in her life.
… expert strategies for creating and designing your online course.
… how the recent pandemic has created new opportunities for togetherness around the world.
… why Sarah says that course creation isi more about the content than the production.
… why you should begin your creation process by knowing what questions your audience are asking.
… the importance of connecting with your audience and what niche you are in.
… why Sarah says that showing your face on your online courses is the highest engaging way to deliver your content.
… finding your style in course creation and having freedom in your creative process.
… the importance of creating and investing in friendships with other course creators.
Hello, what's up everyone? Thank you for listening to the show.
Today I have a super, very special guest and a good friend of mine, Sarah Cordiner who is a qualified course creation specialist and her company is Main Training, and is just a superb woman, awesome course creator, a great educator.
And I'm super excited to have you on the show today. How's it going, Sarah?
I am so excited to be here today. There's nothing more exciting than when you're working with existing colleagues in the field. You know, Jeremy, you and I have known each other for such a long time.
You know, well over seven years plus already in the online course creation space. And I love love love that we are here together. All these times down the line still sharing each other's journeys, still celebrating each other's wins, still working together as colleagues in the field.
And what a different field it is now compared to what it was seven years ago. I mean, my gosh, could we ever imagine we were sitting here doing podcasts together and literally 10s hundreds of 1000s of students each between us, it's just mind blowing.
Yeah, it is absolutely mind blowing. We met a long time ago and come from, you know, different backgrounds, different niches, different industries, even ways of teaching. I didn't know anything about online courses and education.
You come from an educational background, and we cross paths. And this is just such a great time in the world where you can have an online business and meet people from across the world, and become friends and share this journey together.
And I've watched you grow and have just seen the explosion of your company, your brand, your business and you as a person. And it's been super exciting to watch. So I am just thrilled to have you on the podcast today.
And for anyone who doesn't know who you are, and if you're watching this show, my god you should know who Sarah Cordiner is. Everyone recommends you because you just put out such great material.
But for anyone who might not know who you are, why don't you take a moment and just tell us a little bit about your backstory, what you were doing before you got into online business. And then how did you end up where you are today?
Yeah, thank you for the intro. And for the very kind words there.
One thing I do know about online is that we can create a community. We can create a village or a city in our own industries. And it's really interesting to say, you know, people know each other's names in this field.
And anyone who's I believe, is thinking about going out to create online courses, anyone who's going out to create a brand to go out and impact people with the knowledge that they have.
I really want people to know from your or mine stories alone, Jeremy, that you have an absolutely unlimited capacity to do that, it is actually not as hard as you think to be able to make something of yourself, of your name, of your brand your business, if you're just courageous enough to go out there.
So thank you for saying that. And I just want to make sure that, you know, I did not fall out of some, you know, special magical universe to have been able to have the success I've had in my business.
In fact, you know, I actually came from a gypsy background. So for those of you who aren't familiar with that, so many people go, "Like my big fat gypsy wedding?" Pretty much.
In the background that I come from the cultural background, is that it was it's not expected for females to actually even have a job, let alone in education. From the background that I come from it's woman's job to raise children and to take care of her husband.
And I grew up very much shrouded by that mentality and that expectation. Stepping outside of expectation was very much frowned upon. However, I went on to become the first female in my entire extended family to actually receive an education, not only to receive an education, but to then go on to university and complete a degree in education.
I have since gone on to currently hold the world record for being the youngest University Director and Head of campus in Australian history and have students well over 120,000 and 168 countries running a seven figure education services company with online courses.
And I still have to say that I'm not quite sure how that happened, but it really came with determination. It came with looking inside and asking myself, "What makes me feel good? What makes my heart set on fire? You know, what are the things that I'm doing when I just feel like I want to keep doing this forever then time just disappears."
And for me, when I look back as a kid, it was always things were, I was reading, I was writing, I was translating content, I was passing on information to others, I always found ways to teach even when I was a child.
And I think when you find that thing that you love for you, whether it's the actual creation process of creating your courses, your content, whether it's the actual publishing part, you know, the the joy of putting a legacy out there.
Maybe for you, it's the actual presentation, you just love to speak, you have a natural gift to share what's in your mind and let it come out of your mouth articulately in a way that people understand and feel motivated.
Maybe you have a gift for making people feel better. Maybe you have a gift for making people just feel noticed and that they're not alone. Maybe you simply just have strategies that are straight to the point that help people get somewhere fast.
Any one of those things, if any of those things excite you, you can literally take those skills and take yourself to the moon and beyond whilst you're helping other people as well.
And I genuinely believe that just tapping into and noticing the things that make me feel good, was enough to keep my fire burning, to keep learning, to keep pushing forward. And getting where I've got to today.
Yeah, that is absolutely amazing. I mean, I got goosebumps just hearing your story. Knowing that you came from that background where, you know, you weren't empowered to go for, you know, having a job and having education to, like you said, being the first female director of that campus.
It's just absolutely amazing how far you've come and continue to grow, continue to learn more, continue to help more people. And I mean, I see it all over the internet, you know, people who talk about how much you've helped them, how much you've helped in their course creation journey.
It's super inspiring, and should be inspiring for anyone to know that, like you said, if you have a skill, a passion, something that you truly believe in, you have the capacity to make it happen. And I think you're a living testament of that. And you're only growing more only getting better. And I just can't wait to see where you go from there.
So you were an educator director, you had your background in education, which I think is a really great strong suit to have when you start teaching online courses. I did not have that I was kind of winging it and figuring it out as I went.
I felt kind of like you. I always liked teaching. I always liked helping people. But what was it like in those early days, when you decided that you wanted to bring this online and you wanted to start helping people on the online course platforms?
Yeah, I've kind of got that cheesy, but very true story where actually my breakthrough online came from an absolute breakdown. I actually moved over to Australia, so you can hear my accent. I'm actually English, British. I moved over to Australia in early 2012, with nothing but an empty suitcase and a whole load of hope.
But I had been running various teaching various education programs, and mostly personal professional development type courses, and train the trainer type programs in corporate.
So I've been going into banks and delivering this training, I'd been working with mining companies, you know, Defense Forces, writing curriculum and things like that. So I was very, very, very, it was very successful behind the scenes, but very, very silently, going about local corporates in my local city, helping people, you know, in a way that didn't really make a great deal of impact.
I liked it. It was good money. But there was something missing. For me, I kind of felt a little bit held back, I felt a little bit tied down. I had this thing that I couldn't explain that made me feel like, "Sarah," this little voice inside me, "There's something more" and I couldn't figure out what it was.
And there was this one particular day and any of you who've listened to any of my podcast interviews or anything before will will have heard this story that one day in Western Australia my business is going great. I had three offices across Perth. I had 23 full time employees working in those offices.
You know, you'd walk into the building and everyone's got the music on the coffee machines blasting someone's bought their dog in you know, it was fun. It was like it was kind of everything I dreamed of but still couldn't work out what's going wrong.
Anyway, basically most of Western Australia experienced a massive mining bust and WA Western Australia is absolutely heavily dependent on income from mining. Most of my clients are in mining.
We had a huge number of projects that we were delivering for under a fund from the federal government. All of our clients that weren't paying us to go and travel out to remote Aboriginal communities to deliver positive training and education programs all of a sudden lost their funding.
It was a complete overnight thing. It happened one Tuesday morning. And I remember getting the first call from one of my clients. And they said, "Sarah, we're really, really sorry. We've just literally come out of a big conference call with all of our bosses. We have just lost all of our funding, we cannot pay you."
And I was like, "What do you mean you can't pay me. I've got my bill that I'm about to send through." They're like, "We're really sorry. We can probably pay you a month of it. But we literally have lost all our funding. Everything is gone."
I've got trainers, 23 of them out like any of you who have any comprehension of how big Western Australia is. There are people out in Woop Woop that we say like Woop Woop means literally in the middle of nowhere, with no phone signal, no cell phones, they literally think they're sitting out there for the next two months, right?
These communities having no idea what's going on behind the scenes. So anyway, I laugh, but it was I'm just thinking, "What am I going to do? I've got these people to pay." The phone rang again, it was another client who was also funded by the same federal fund, "Sarah, we can't pay you."
The phone rang again. I literally picked up the phone and went, "I know, don't say it like, I know, I know why you're calling me." So this happened, how to handle a lot of calls come through. And by the time five o'clock came, I knew that I was in severe trouble.
I literally in one single day lost $2.7 million and 23 employees. I closed the door to my last employee, having said, "I'm so sorry, you don't have a job anymore. Your redundancy will be paid." And I sat down on the tile floor in my office, and I threw up in the wastepaper basket.
I just thought, "What am I going to do? I'm absolutely completely and utterly broke. I don't know how I'm going to pay off the leases. I've got these office leases, how am I going to pay those out? I'm going to contract for another year with these things. You know, I've got 23 desktop computers and all of the equipment. I've got coffee machines that are on a [bleep] lease. I've got staff cars. I've got like 23 redundancies to pay out."
I just was sitting there going, "And this and this and this, how am I gonna get out?" I called my accountant and I said, "What do I do?" He said, "Sarah, you have to go into administration. You have to fold."
He said big businesses can't get out of this and alone businesses that are smaller shores, right. You know, talking small 23 full time employees, right? It wsn't small, small it was a seven figure company.
But he was going, "You just can't get out of this. You can't survive this, no one can survive this." And I hung up the phone I threw up again. And I opened a bottle of wine. I did drink all of it while sobbing.
A puddle of tears on the floor and self pity literally strangling me. And I was about three o'clock in the morning. And I was still sat there just crying. And I thought, "You know what?" Little bit a little bit of red wine courage came in. And that true like defiant, entrepreneurial spirit found at the bottom of the bottom of serralves. Right?
That said to me, "You know what, Sarah, you got yourself into this. You need to get yourself out. You are 100% responsible for getting complacent." I had all this money coming in. But they were essentially all funded, albeit through different clients by the same fund. Right?
That is a massive major risk taking strategy right there. That is poor leadership on my part. I put all my eggs in one basket. And there I was, you know, sipping my martinis, driving my nice car, looking at my flash office thinking I'd made it. And it turned out, you know, my business was built on the whim of one particular fund under one particular government in one tiny state.
And I thought, "Well, dude. No wonder I'm in this situation." I called my accountant the next morning. And I said, "Look, I'm not going into administration, I got myself into this, I need to get myself out of this. Every single part of this of what's going on right now is completely and utterly my responsibility. And the result of my poor leadership, I'm going to learn from this, I'm going to pay back every single cent."
I called the tax office, put in a payment plan for the Superannuation Retirement Fund money, all the staff taxes that had to be paid. Thank you tax office, and I've got work. So I thought, "Well, what am I gonna do? I don't have a local business anymore. I no longer can depend on my local economy, I have to do something else."
So I thought I know what I'll do. I've just spent years delivering repeating the same workshops over and over and over again. I was doing leadership training, I was doing training, the trainer training, I was just all these things that are just kept on getting paid to repeat to a different client every single week.
So I thought, "Well, I'll tell you what to do. If I can't drive to my local city and work with these guys anymore, because they've all lost their money. Why don't I just record what I've been teaching face to face for all these years, and somehow find a way to take it to somebody that's not in Western Australia?"
So I did. I went out and bought a camera. And I just started recording these workshops, and I had no idea what I was doing. But I knew my content. That was lucky. But I had no idea how to look down the lens of a camera.
I got really stiff looking at a camera. Presenting in a classroom is so different, you know, you feed off the energy of the room, you bounce off of the people that are there, you change your pace, you change the way that you're delivering based on who's there and the questions they asked.
Just staring at a camera, I felt like I was genuinely staring down the barrel of a gun and I remember like I even have some videos. I mean any of you I'm going to cringe to even point you here but go back and look at some of my first YouTube videos like it, they are so embarrassing.
I keep them there to make a point, right? To make a point that nobody falls out of the womb, knowing how to present to a camera, it just doesn't happen, right? There's no such thing as when people say that to natural camera like no, I just absolutely embarrassed myself way more than you have so far right? I had to do it.
And so I've recorded these videos, I chopped them all up on a big, fat, unedited, ugly looking video. I think there was some terrible corporate webinar software I was using back then was clunkier than a phone book, right?
And I just started emailing all of these clients I've worked with in the past and said, "Hey, I know you don't have the budget to afford my daily rate anymore," because I was expensive, right? "But I've just recorded the workshops that I used to deliver to you, for 1000s of dollars a day. And actually, you can just have it for a couple of grand if you'd like. And you can just give it to all your staff."
And they were like, "What?" They were just saving an absolute fortune right here, like they've gone from paying me like a lot of money to getting a whole course for a couple of grand. So they were like, "We'll take it." And I was like, "Great."
And there's a tiny, little tiny little bit off of the debt I now have to pay off and the redundancies I've got to pay. So that went off. And I thought, "This is working" and I just literally got out a digital directory, go onto Google and type in, we were in Australia. So I typed in ASX listed businesses. That's our fortune 500 over here in Australia.
And I just literally emailed them all and said, "I've got this online course. Would you like it? It's way cheaper than paying me by the day." And loads of them took it. I was blown away.
I literally made six figures in about seven days just emailing this thing out without even, I didn't even have a sales page. I didn't even know what sales page was. I didn't have any opt-in-thingamajig. I did not even know what that was. And when it even existed.
I was just sending these guys an email and chucking them a link to this, like corporate webinar software that this thing was sat on, right. It was so bad, but people paid for it. And I thought , "Well, I feel like I'm onto something here."
So I kept recording more courses and I turfed out I think I had about 15 or 16 courses that I've been delivering to the corporate. I just chucked these things out. So basically, the money started multiplying because I kept going back to these clients that had bought something off of me.
I was like, "Hey, would you like another one?" And they were like, "Okay, no worries."And then a lot of people, particularly the business world, solopreneurs entrepreneurs, I've been speaking a lot of these business workshops. They said, "Sarah, we've seen you kind of we know what happened."
I've been quite open about what was going on. I've been very open about the fact that my business was literally facing administration. And they were like, "Hang on a minute. We've just kind of seen this turnaround." I was updating people like, "Woo hoo! I've paid off everyone's redundancies. Yes, right. Next step. I've got to pay Superannuation Retirement funds, yay." Like, tick, tick, tick.
"How are you doing this, Sarah?" I was like, "Well, I just made an online course." "How did you do it?"And for me, it came quite naturally. Because I've been used to teaching, I am a teacher trainer. I am a qualified educator. So I just kind of broke down and went well, in layman's terms, what is it that I'm doing? I created the course plan. You know, I broke down the content, I delivered it more in bits rather than deliver it conversationally in a face to face situation.
And they were like, "Oh, we can do that, too." I was like, "Yes, you can let me help you." And boom, it just went from there, really. And that's when I discovered that there were actual learning management systems out there rather than dumping this stuff on to these webinar platforms.
And I started investigating these online learning management systems. This is when I came across marketplaces. And Udemy was obviously one of the biggest marketplaces I came across.
Back then it was still very new. And there were only 30,000 users, I think, or something at the time that I joined there, I think over how many is it now? 30 million?
That's how small Udemy was. And obviously that's where I met you, Jeremy. You know, there was these tiny little groups of people like you and I that had kind of discovered that education had actually gone commercial, right?
It had gone from being this boring thing that you have to be academically qualified for, to actually in a very exciting, sexy, it's become a commercial thing thing. And there's little Facebook groups have popped up and I joined them going, "Alright, I'm just I'm just moving into this online world."
And that's where I met you, Jeremy. You know, we were there encouraging each other. "Does anyone know how to make it sound like I'm not presenting from a tin of baked beans? Right? Does anyone know how this camera thing plugs in? Does anyone know how I like chop out the bit where I made a massive mistake and the cat spot went across the screen?"
I remember those days where all of us literally got by because there were no online courses on how to do any of this. There were no instructional manuals and how to do this. There were no books on how to do this. No podcasts on how to do this. We were literally just helping each other blind.
And we made it work, didn't we? I mean look where we are now. You know, it kind of happened by accident. But along the way, accidents come I think to not only show you that you are supposed to be on a different path. Accidents also come because they're the perfect opportunity for you to learn, grow, connect, and and create something magical along the way. And I love it.
Yeah, definitely. Just amazing. A couple of things to unpack here. But first of all, you know, I completely agree with you. That was a great accident. You had special skills that you could help with, I had skills other friends of ours in these groups were chiming in and helping out.
And, you know, it's sad to see some people who are dissuaded by competition in industries. And in this particular industry, of course creation. I've never felt that from people, I've always felt a tight knit community of good friends and people willing to help out each other.
I mean, me and you are in the same space, we're both helping people learn how to create courses. Our styles are different, we're different people. But I don't see you as competition, I see you as a good friend of mine and someone that I can learn from. And hopefully, there's things that you can learn from me.
And so I feel like if people have that open mindset, in their industry, and in their business, it will go so much further than thinking of someone as competition, or "I can't do it, because this person's doing it." Because that community that you can build can be super powerful.
I want to just talk on a couple quick points here, just things that I noticed in your story that I just wanted to point out to the audience that I thought was super important. First of all, that the fact that you took responsibility, I think is super important.
The fact that all of these things were happening, you were losing this business, you were having to let people go. And at that point, it would be so easy for someone to say, to blame, "I blame the government, I blame, you know, the funding, I blame this, I blame that."
And that's what we as humans naturally want to do. We want to start pointing the fingers and saying, "This shouldn't be happening to me because of these reasons." But you didn't do that you took responsibility. You said, "This is my leadership, I got me here, I need to get me out of here."
And doing that I think is just really important for anyone and their business. Business is going to be hard, you're going to have obstacles, you're going to have roadblocks, you're gonna hit those really hard times.
Some of them are small mistakes, some of them are $2.7 million errors that happen. But regardless, you got to take the reins. And if you want to be the entrepreneur and you want to be the leader, you got to say, "I'm responsible for the things that happened in this business." That was number one.
umber two, you took action, you said, "I'm not going to sit here and wallow. Maybe I don't know how to use a camera, or I don't know how to set up a online course platform. But that's not going to stop me, I'm going to take action now. I'm going to use what I have, I'm going to go out and I'm going to just start moving forward."
And you took that action, you got the camera, you figured it out, you learned how to use it, you learned how to upload the videos, you learned how to get on the marketplaces. And you know, I commend you for that, you know.
We want to learn and yes, you need to learn, you need to hone your skills. But you can't get stuck in paralysis by analysis. You've got to take action, you got to move forward, you can sit there and take all the courses in the world. And you know, Sarah, and I hope you take all of our courses in the world.
But if you're not taking action on those courses, they're worthless, they don't mean anything, we don't want you to just watch videos. We want you to take the videos, learn from them, and then go apply that into your life or in your business. So first was responsibility. Second thing I saw was that you took action.
And number three, you started basic, you know, everyone gets so worried about the technology. And, "I've gotta have the fanciest cameras and the fanciest lighting systems and the best, you know what marketplace or what platform should I do?"
You didn't worry about that. You said, "I'm going to just start emailing people. I'm going to cold call people, I don't have a course platform, I don't have any of this and you know things but that's not going to stop me. I'm going to hop on email or hop on the phone and start reaching out to these companies start closing deals and start helping people."
And I think that's where, you know, again, people get stuck. They get so worried about the tech and they get so worried about, "Oh, I don't know what platform to choose, do I choose Thinkific or Kajabi or Clickfunnels?" You know, in the end, those are just tools and you need to take action and you need to just get started and start moving forward.
So I totally commend you on that. You know, what a great meeting Udemy, the company has been for us to get together to put our courses up there to teach people make some money help 1000s, hundreds of 1000s of students now around the world. And we both respectively done that on our own businesses.
So from there, you get your courses up, you start seeing success. Where did that journey take you after that? And if you just want to talk a little bit about, you know, how are you going about creating your courses? What do some of your course creation strategy look like? How are you picking topics moving from this point forward?
Yeah, so really, it's first of all about recognizing that it's more about the content than the production. People are not coming to assess your course or buy your course because like you have a proper like high definition eyeball, right?
They're coming to your course because it says it's going to answer a particular question they have, excuse me, everyone. See, we cough, and we have mistakes. And we trip over our words, this is what happens in the world of online course creation. I hope you keep that don't cut that out, Jeremy.
So I really want to tell people that to this day, I'm still creating courses for corporates that are paying me a huge amount of money to do so. I am creating courses from my own platform that I'm getting a lot of students coming through. And you know, that equals a lot of money over time.
And I'm telling you now, I still use like a less than $50 set of lighting. I am still using a backdrop a green screen that I got for less than $50, we do not need to spend 1000s of 1000s of dollars on superduper fancy studios, we do not need to spend 1000s of 1000s of dollars on like over the top fancy editors, people are not going to review the course and go, "This course was great because it had such a fancy twinkle at the end."
They come into your course because of what it says they're going to learn from it, and what transformation they're going to get from it. That is the one thing that you need to keep top of your mind when it comes to a course.
Again, you've mentioned Jeremy, the platform is just the tool. What people want is not what platform is it on or what colors whiz bangs wallets does it have in there, what kind of fancy twinkles have at the end. They're coming to your course, because they just want the fastest way to learn what they need to learn.
And the quickest way to get the feelings, the emotions, the lifestyle, whatever it is that they are after. So you can do this absolutely with your phone. You can do it with a cheap, fairly half decent webcam, as long as you've got a big bright window in front of your face so that people can see your face.
And it doesn't sound like you're presenting from a tin of baked beans, you can get brilliant microphones from your local electronics store, from Amazon, from ebay for less than 20 bucks that are perfectly good quality. Okay? So that's the first thing.
You need to start by knowing what questions your audience are asking. And there are tools to go out and do that we won't go into that today there are tools to actually go and find what questions people are asking, you know your industry, you know, your people, you know what questions they ask you every single day.
Start writing them down, I get myself a big Google Sheet, and I still have it. Whenever I'm scrolling Facebook groups, if I see a question that I can answer, I chuck it in my Google Sheets.
If I am, you know, reading blog posts, if I am seeing comments on threads, i Wherever I am, if I see a question I can answer, I chuck it down in my sheet. This is exactly where your course is going to start coming from. The people who is who you're going to go and serve.
So you start with all the things that you can answer, you start with all the questions, all the tips that you can give to people's questions, that becomes the core of your course content. Of course, you're then going to want to organize those into some kind of order that's going to flow sensibly and help people move from one to the other.
You can deliver it using your talking heads. You don't have to have a fancy studio, you don't have to have green screens. I say to people, the environment your students are in is the environment that you kind of want to come across as being in yourself because it's gonna be the most relatable to those people who are listening to you. Right?
So if you're teaching yoga, don't be in a posh video studio with a green backdrop. If you're doing yoga, go and be in your yoga studio, or go outside into the park and go under the tree.
If you're teaching something about parenting, please don't sit in some posh studio with a suit on and a PowerPoint. No parenting student is gonna relate to that. Of course they're not. If you're teaching parenting, please be in the kid's playroom, please set up a corner of your lounge where some of the toys are sprinkled across the floor. Let your kids be in it. For goodness sakes. You know, this is your teaching people who are in that state of being surrounded by chaos and kids and handprints on the dog.
Why not have that as part of your video, people are going to be like, "Oh my God, this person gets my life." Of course if you're teaching more corporate professional programs, having your dog and your kids around, it's probably not going to be the right thing for you. It might be that you want to be in a nice clean environment with a PowerPoint slide or doing a screen share.
So think about, "Where are my audience and then therefore, what's the best type of delivery for them?" I'm going to give you a heads up video with your face on it is the highest converting so the highest engaging way to deliver your content humans, like humans.
Wer'e tribe animals we learn best by watching the mouth when it speaks, looking into the eyeballs as we are engaging and listening to the person that's teaching us. It doesn't mean you have to do talking heads. It doesn't mean that your course is going to be bad. If you don't want to have your face on camera. That's okay.
I'm just telling you that's the highest engaging rate. You can still just do voice. If you don't want to have your face and your camera. You don't want to be the face of your brand. That's okay as well. As long as you are answering the questions that your people have you are going to be absolutely fine.
So that's what I do I turn the camera on. Usually my webcam or my mobile phone. I answer all the questions that my audience have. I put them up on a place that they can be accessed by people.
For me that's a learning management system. I find that the learning management systems out there make it really easy for us course creators to use. It makes our lives quick and simple, they're designed to be quick and simple.
And our students can simply go in, access them, pay for them, we don't have to be involved in that process. So that's it. Now in terms of once you've created the thing, as you probably know, Jeremy, that's where the real work begins.
Now, look, I do have. I do have like a 10 step process that I take people through in terms of my own system. We all have our own way of doing things. I think this is the most beautiful thing about course creation, is that it is a creative process.
So the way Jeremy creates a course isn't the same way that I create a course. The way that I create courses in the same way as one of our other colleagues in this space, create courses. And that's what should be really exciting for people.
Is you can follow a structure, you can follow guidelines, and I certainly have put my 10-step course creation system together. For people that follow me to use to use as their guidelines uses a skeleton, to use almost as the the empty branches of a tree that they can then go and decorate hang, neat, dress however they want, because you are the course creator, right?
So this is why people like myself and Jeremy, have our systems that we have found work for us. And we share those so that people can go, "Okay, I can look at this and I can take from it, what's going to work for me." And I do give that away in a in a free course creation starter kit that I know Jeremy put a link to at the end of this.
But also just remember when you're going into this thing, and you're thinking, "I don't know what I'm doing," Jeremy and I have both felt that too. "I don't know what I'm doing." It's a creative process.
So please don't put too much pressure on yourself to think there is a right or a wrong way to share what you know. Don't think that there is a right or a wrong way or a good way or a bad way to go and help people.
You just need to share what's in your heart, what's in your head and do that in the way that comes most naturally most comfortably to you. That will make you win.
I know from personal experience, interviewing dozens of people on this podcast now that everyone goes about their course creation process differently.
I've had people who were educators, people who weren't educators, people who started with live classrooms, people who went straight into online courses. We've had every industry under the sun on this podcast. And you just learn what fits your style and what fits you.
And I love that you say it's a creative process because it really is. It's a fine mix of a little bit of analytical where you're learning technology, and you're learning how to do some of these things that you have to do to get the course online.
But there's a lot of art to this. And as it being art, it's malleable, you can make it how you want it to be, you can make it fun, you can make it interesting, you can make it serious, you can add gamification to it, whatever you would like to do.
And so I'm glad that you say that, because I don't think enough people really harp on that point. And I think that it is important that as you begin creating, you're going to find your style, and your audience is going to resonate with you because of who you are. And the information that you're providing.
Some people are going to love Sarah, some people aren't going to find Sarah that great. Some people are going to love me and they're not going to find me that great.
It's so true. And that's why there's no competition. You've touched on this already. And this is so true for us because I say to people all the time people are like, "Oh my gosh, Sarah, but there's so many other people teaching what I want to teach. There's so many other courses on what I want to create a course and there's space for me." They sit there feelings open and I'm like, "Oh my goodness." Right?
Jeremy and I are a perfect example. We teach the same thing, right? Now even if Jeremy and I followed the exact same script if we were given an identical script to read, if we would dress the same, right? If I sent him a lipstick and he could put that on and we try to get the same landing pages and the same copy, we would still attract completely different people.
There is no such thing as competition here because we are different people, we are going to attract different people that we will never be competing for. Because some people you know, want to work with that style that personality.
Some people look at my videos or listen to me, "My God, you can breathe between your words like how annoying." Maybe I remind them as some nasty person that smelled funny at school, right words, who knows?
We are all completely and utterly unique. Not only we only completely and utterly unique, meaning there is no sense of competition. But people forget that over half of the world doesn't even have the internet yet. Right?
We are literally at the bottom of this bell curve. This bell curve hasn't even started bell in yet. Right? We are so at the forefront of this. People we are not saturated. We are not behind. We are the first ever generation ever, ever, ever in history to be and do online learning.
Believe me, when I say was more than 7 billion people on planet Earth, half of which who don't even have access to the internet yet, this industry has not even yet to begun. So please don't feel like you're behind. Jump in now.
We are the godfathers, the grandmothers, whatever word you want to use of this industry of this learning revolution. And we are so lucky. And if you don't trust yourself, give yourself some courage. Give yourself a pat on the back, have a little bit of gritted teeth and determination and go out there to share. Right?
You're literally just putting an opportunity in the bin because this is here for us as the first ones ever to make our mark and leave a legacy. Every single person behind us that's younger than us, they are coming after. And they're gonna be looking up to us for the lessons that we are learning as we're doing this.
And they're gonna look up to us as to how they are then going to go and create their own versions of what we're doing to. This is a magical time and it's absolutely bursting with opportunity. Please take it.
That's amazing. Very, very great stuff. Sarah, I appreciate that. Really great points. I can't say it any better. And I know that we're getting close to the time and I don't want to hold you up too long.
You've been amazing. And I just love you know, hearing you talk and talk about these different aspects of course creation and entrepreneurship and mindset and helping those out there.
And I hope that a lot of people are really listening and paying attention, because you're dropping so much value in this episode. And I really appreciate that.
One last topic that I wanted to hit on real quick, before we wrap up, is you mentioned that you were even going to go back to some live events. And you mentioned that you're kind of getting back to your roots a little bit.
So if you could just let me know and let the audience know. What does that look like now?
Yeah, since COVID started, I think we one thing we've all definitely experienced is change and pivot and adjusting and moving paths and twisting and reevaluating. Right. And this has been absolutely huge.
Interestingly, I was already completely online when the COVID hit so for me, the only thing that was impacted was my maternity leave. I had an eight day old baby when COVID came alone. So that was out the window.
Yeah, actually, but my business and most people who I know who have online businesses grew quite dramatically. So I've been quite fortunate. And obviously my thoughts, my prayers, and everything goes out to those who haven't had such a positive experience with this terrible time.
But we are in a situation now where we have come back to something that's so old. It's new again, something that's like so boring is like sexy again. I'm finding we're very fortunate where I live in Western Australia. We've managed to so far avoid significant lockdowns and restrictions with with COVID.
So what we found is that people are extremely hungry, and desperate. And I'm going to use that word intentionally for togetherness, physical togetherness. People are paying twice as much for face to face workshops now than they were two years ago.
Because we have become so fatigued and isolated with everything moving online that people are seeing face to face opportunities and are jumping on them and paying significantly.
Recently I traveled up to the city. And a friend of mine, a client of mine and actually was delivering a workshop. And I just went along to go and watch her and see how she's doing give her some tips and some feedback from the back of the room.
And she had 60 Women in this workshop. Each of those women had paid $200 each to be in that workshop. And every single one of them said, "I know I could have done this online for $10. I know I could do this exact same content in an online course for 10, 15, $20. I was happy to pay 200 bucks and travel over an hour to get here because I am desperate to just meet people network being a roomful of people be able to put up my hand and ask a question to have the teacher come over to me and show me how to do something on my own on my own phone."
And she'd made $12,000 for a day's work, you know who doesn't want that and for me I even came out of that workshop just feeling so ridiculously energized and excited by being physically surrounded by other people who were just as ambitious, excited, and you know, doing the same thing as you.
I flew in the car. I promised I drove at the speed limit. And I contacted my PA Sybil and I said, "Sybil, Sybil, Sybil. Book of flight darlin. You're coming down to Perth, we are going to book workshops."
Because I just felt so alive by it, and so did the people there, then it reminded me just how much the power of a physical presence, the how much the world needs that right now.
So although we are definitely in a place where we're strategizing to massively expand online, this is obviously like I've just said, this is just the beginning. And anyone who's not making big plans right now is just literally putting an opportunity in the bin.
We need to also see that COVID has created another opportunity for creating togetherness, creating communion, and creating space. If you can, if that's possible, to to help people in a new form of delivery format that is old, but it's definitely definitely sexy again.
That's awesome. I love that so much. I want to do that. I remember watching because you did this on I think maybe a smaller scale back in the day, because I remember a couple years ago, I don't know how long it is now.
But you were doing little workshops, weren't you having people come in and you were helping them record their course and doing things like that? And I remember you posting those online and being like, "Oh, that's so awesome. I want to do that."
Yeah, that's it. And yeah, this is the cool thing that anyone could do, no matter what your teaching is, you know, how could you bring a face to face element of that.
And so I you know, I created my course creation boot camps, where I'd hire a big mansion, I'd bring my whole film crew, all of my editing team, and people literally walk away after a week with their whole online course filmed, edited, upload onto their own online school with sales being made before they walked out the door.
You know, that's your high ticket thing. What would be your own high ticket equivalent of that? Can you create some kind of immersion program or retreat that you may do when and when because it's not if, when we will go back to you know, being allowed out of our houses again, at some point.
When that happens, what would be your equivalent of a retreat or an immersion program. The other flip side of it is another service I was offering until COVID hit was, you know, literally come to my house for a day.
And people were paying a lot of money to come to my personal home, sitting with me, we create their course plan in the day, we'd set up that online school together, they would then jump in my studio, use my equipment to film their course, and at the end of the day, I take them out for dinner, we'd have a glass of wine, or sometimes they'd stay the night. You know, we have a good old chinwag about our plans and our goals and get excited.
That was getting solidly booked out all of the time. And there is still space for that. So what would be the equivalent of that for you guys listening, you know. Every single one of us have something that we could sit down with one of our customers and give them that one on one, let's get it done, kind of experience.
You do have that. Please think that just because you're creating an online business, again, we talk about tools, vehicles, mechanisms, online, using this camera using this webcam, using this microphone using the lights that are all around me while I'm talking right now.
These are just tools to be able to share with people all of the different ways that I can help them, you know. But don't limit yourself to just one. You can create self-study online courses, you can create an online coaching program you can create one day it's done-for-you experiences or done-with-you experiences.
You can create retreats and immersion programs. You can do done-for-you services. All of these are opportunities that you can be using to help your people grow to the next step. And whilst you grow at exactly the same time.
Yeah, that's awesome. And not only that, but you're diversifying your revenue streams. And you know, if something happens that another COVID happens or online goes down, then you have the offline stuff and vice versa.
Or another funding changes.
Well, that's really cool. Well, I'm gonna start looking out for your retreats, I might have to make a trip over to Australia and go to one of these workshops. I think that'd be a lot of fun.
Sarah, it's been awesome. So awesome having you on the show. I'm so glad that you agreed to come on and share your time with us today. I know people are going to be super excited to learn more from you, find out more about you.
Where can people go online to get that 10 step process or to learn more about what you're doing today?
Yeah, thank you so much, Jeremy, for the opportunity to share and for us all to follow each other and obviously don't forget to also jump in to Jeremy's programs and giveaways, too.
I do have a free course creation starter kit that has my personal 10 step strategy for creating an online course. It's got a five day create your course outline challenge included in there for free as well.
That's at SarahCordiner.com/starterkit that's completely free of charge. If you want a little sneak peek at the way I do it, that's what you will find in there. We have full tutorial videos and downloads for you to get through.
Perfect. Well, I will make sure that I link that and every other social media platform and your website and all those links, I'll put them in the show notes. So just stay tuned to the end of the show.
And I'll have the link for that where you can go to the website and find all those links and go straight to her site, and start just devouring all this wonderful information that she has for everyone.
Sarah, thank you so much for coming on the show today. I appreciate you. I appreciate everything that you're doing. And I love our friendship and how far that we've grown together. And I only hope the most success for you in the future.
My absolute pleasure. And I can't wait for us to keep on strategizing behind the scenes and see why we take it to the next level because you know what? Our goals are just gonna keep growing.
Jeremy, thank you for having me today. And I can't wait to catch up with you again soon.
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