The Best Way to Turn an Evergreen Online Course into a Cohort-Based Course4 minute read
Cohort-based online courses are getting more and more popular. So if you are a creator, you might want to try this new way of teaching online.
Turning an evergreen online course into a cohort-based course can be an easy option to test the benefits of cohort-based learning programs, without having to create a whole new course from scratch.
In today's article, we will explain what cohort-based online courses are, their benefits and how you can turn an evergreen online course into a cohort-based course easily using Heights Platform.
All You Need to Know About Cohort-Based Courses
What Are They
Cohort-based can be defined as group-based, time-sensitive courses. This means that students don't go through the course content at their own pace, instead, they are guided through the curriculum together as a group and consume the content simultaneously.
Learn how to create a cohort-based online course: What are Cohort-Based Online Courses? + How to Create One
Wondering what differentiates cohort-based courses from evergreen courses?
In cohort-based courses, a group of students starts learning at the same time as each lesson is released on set calendar days.
Sometimes lessons in cohort-based courses are live sessions or calls held by the creator, but can also be pre-recorded lessons (as in an evergreen course) with the only difference of being released on a set calendar date and even expiring after some time.
There are many benefits to holding cohort-based online courses. This business model is a great way to boost students' completion rates and promote a feeling of community around your program. Learners can interact with each other and the creator, talk about the lessons' content, provide their feedback and become part of a community.
When is it OK to Turn an Evergreen Course into a Cohort-Based Course?
As we already established, evergreen online courses and cohort-based courses are not the same things.
Depending on your topic, what you want to achieve with your course, how much you want to interact with your students (and more factors), you should choose the online course business model that better suits your needs.
So turning an evergreen course into a cohort-based course might not always be a good idea, let's see when is it ok - and even better - to adapt the cohort-based model:
If you need higher engagement in your course
In cohort-based courses, a group of students go through the content at the same time and enroll on the same launch date. Factors like one-on-one interactions with the creator and limited-time lessons help you foster engagement among your students.
If your evergreen online course suffers from poor engagement and low completion rates, a cohort-based structure might be just what you need to make your students feel more accountable!
If you are willing to interact more with your students
Cohort-based online courses are a less "passive" way of selling online. As the creator, you always need to be on top of your students, interact with them, host live lessons and follow them in their journey. This structure might not be ideal for all creators, but if you are willing to put in the work, then cohort-based courses are for you.
If you have a mini-course to collect leads
Another popular use case for cohort-based courses is to introduce new prospects to your business by running short, engaging mini-courses or challenges. If you are already using this approach, why not turn your mini-course into a cohort-based course and create even more hype around your brand?
If you want to raise the price of your online course
As cohort-based courses offer more personal interaction with the creator, they are usually priced higher than evergreen courses. So if you are looking for a reason to justify a price increase in your program, turning your course into a cohort-based one can be a great solution.
If your topic requires some level of 1-on-1 or group learning
Some topics and niches are better suited for cohort learning. If your course students could benefit from some live training and more personalized interaction with the creator, then cohort-based courses are for you.
If your target audience will respond better to a cohort-based course
Following the needs of your target audience is always a good idea. Do some market research and try to understand how your current customers would react to a cohort-based online course. Certain customer types might respond better than others to the increased interaction.
Turn an Evergreen Online Course into a Cohort-Based Course using Heights Platform
Now to the best part: turning your existing evergreen courses into cohort-based courses is super easy with Heights Platform.
Without Heights Platform, you would have to edit each lesson manually, hide it from your students and then release it on a set day, notify your students manually and so on... to summarize, it is a huge hassle!
Fortunately, Heights Platform has a feature specifically designed to run cohort-based courses easily: Challenges.
Challenges in Heights Platform are cohort-based online courses with a start and an end date. You can set a release date for every single lesson, as well as decide on an expiration date. Students can comment live under each lesson and interact with each other as they go through the content.
Learn all about Challenges: Introducing Challenges in Heights Platform (How to Increase Engagement and Boost Online Course Sales)
You can set automated emails to be sent right after each lesson is released, so you don't have to worry about setting alarms for yourself to notify students!
After your challenge (cohort-based course) comes to the end date, you can choose whether you want to re-run the same challenge or slightly modify it for a future launch, all of this with a simple click of a button.
So let's see exactly how you can turn your Heights evergreen course into a challenge. Here is a picture of a lesson inside an evergreen course:
As you can see the course is called "Learn the Basics" and we want to move this lesson from this course into a cohort-based course that we previously created, called "7-Day Yoga Challenge".
This is super simple, watch:
We simply click "Move", select the new course we want the lesson to be, and that's it!
Heights automatically changes the attributes of the lesson to fit the new cohort-based course, so you can then go ahead and set a release date for that lesson.
Now our welcome lesson is in the challenge course. Here is where you can change the settings for the lesson (set a release date, set an expiration date, customize the automated email that will be sent to students once the lesson is available, and publish):
Once you move all your evergreen course lessons into the new challenge and customize the settings, you are ready to go and launch your cohort-based online course!Create Your Challenge Course Today