E is for Enrolment

Generating and maintaining enrolment momentum in your e-learning courses

As more and more corporations decide to go digital with employee training, it becomes apparent that enrolment is more than just a dirty word used by course administrators to describe the arduous process of getting people to sign up for courses.

It’s clear that the success of a course is not just dependent on how attractive you can make your course. Enrolment is, therefore, a process of learner ‘activation’ rather than merely one of learner acquisition. However you choose to introduce a course, you need to be aware that this introduction could result in either a gain or loss in enrolments, and a subsequent higher or lower course completion rate.

So how do you go about fostering a desire for learning during the enrolment process that will encourage a higher number of sign-ups, create a sense of excitement for compulsory enrolments, and generate long-term e-learning programme success? Here are a few marketing tips to help you do just that:

1. Location, location, location

Where are you advertising this course? If the answer is ‘the kitchen noticeboard on the eighth floor’, you’re not doing it right. In order to create salience, you need to have a presence. Make sure your learners can’t help but know that a course is actually happening, and you’ll be off to a good start.

2. Information delivery

It’s hard to get excited about any course described in a lengthy, eight-paragraph e-mail. Chances are, you’ll have bored your learners before they even start the course. Try using an e-flyer, a well-designed poster, or even a short video to spark learner curiosity, rather than extinguish it with too much information. It’s also a good idea to ensure that the learner is able to share their enrolment (and information about the course, where possible) with others over social media or online company platforms.

3. What’s in it for me?

It isn’t any good to tell learners that your course is superbly designed, well-crafted and endorsed by management and other learners if they have no idea what the course actually looks like. Sustain their curiosity by offering them a sneak peek of the course itself. In addition, make sure that your course is offering a solution to a specific problem or potential skill acquisition. This way, you’ll maintain a specific relevance rather than occupying a vague space in the learner’s mind where the filing cabinet labelled ‘Things I don’t know much about’ rests.

4. Call to action

Using a call to action that further tantalises a learner’s curiosity, such as ‘Want to know more?’ is less pushy than pasting capitalised phrases like ‘SIGN UP NOW’ all over your course enrolment advertisements. The power of simple, subtle suggestion cannot be overemphasised here. If a learner who is required to enrol for a course sees an aggressive call to action, it may foster resentment toward the course rather than a desire to complete it. Thus, although enrolment itself is sure to take place in this context, your course completion rates will suffer unless the learner feels actively engaged from the start.

So there you have it, cultivating curiosity and excitement amongst potential learners, whether enrolment is compulsory or not, is sure to benefit both your enrolment and course completion rates, as well as ensuring a wealth of potential sign-ups for future courses.