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Before we get started, I have a confession. It took me a LONG time to figure out what I wanted to do with my life after I left my career, started traveling the world and then well…babies. I’ve literally spent thousands of dollars on courses, training, coaches, and consultants before I landed here, at Nomad Mom Life. I want to save you from the time and money suck that can happen when you decide to be your own boss. The leap from employee to entrepreneur takes a lot of faith and a bit of preparation. I can’t help you with the faith, but here are 10 online courses to help you launch your online empire.
Skillcrush is a self-paced educational system designed for women who want to learn coding and web development skills. The courses offered through Skillcrush are not easy. I’ve taken one of the programs, and while I learned a crap load of information and now have a greater understanding of basic coding demands for my site, it was an extraordinarily challenging course. They give a TON of information. It’s almost overwhelming. You really need to be ready to work and learn when you start this program.
As online courses go, when I signed up the pricing was manageable, and I know of a few graduates who’ve gone on to launch successful online web development companies. I’m pretty happy just knowing how to maintain my website with less angst. So, I’d recommend Skillcrush to anyone looking to learn new skills or sharpen existing ones.
2. Elite Blog Academy
Elite Blog Academy is a hugely popular (almost illusive) course for anyone who wants to learn how to start AND monetize a blog. The course is only available for 5 days (join the waitlist) once a year but once you enroll, you have access to it forever. Plus, you get access to all of the course updates and access to a network of some of the most successful bloggers out there.
When you enroll, Ruth Soukup teaches you everything from blog creation through blog monetization, including defining your audience, crafting your content and messaging, strategic promotion, and monetization. Many of her graduates now earn tens of thousands of dollars in monthly income from their blogs. I hope to be one of those grads.
I’d recommend this course to anyone with an online business who wants to leverage their blog to find new clients and keep existing clients aware of your new products or services.
B-School is a beast. It’s an amazing 8-week course that mixes self-paced work with live Q&A calls. Plus, you get access to an engaging driven group of entrepreneurs.
Enrollment opens once a year, but you have access to it forever. Marie Forleo offers an 8-week self-paced course to support would-be entrepreneurs to test design, launch, and promote businesses to create a life they love while helping others to do the same. This course is for you if you want to take a business idea from conception to reality. Marie walks you through each step of business creation. By the end of the course, you will define your client, create a communications plan, develop a marketing plan, and create services or products for purchase.
Now, to get the most out of B-School, it really helps to have two things under your belt. First, you need to have an inkling about what you want to do: you need a skill or a product offering in mind. Second, you also need to have somewhat of a network or a small existing audience because the course doesn’t really teach you how to blog. So, if you’re a nomad (like me), you need to start your entrepreneurial journey with a bit more online networking know-how. It’s an amazing course, but if you don’t have an existing network or your product/service isn’t designed for entrepreneurs, you may need a supplemental course on building an online presence and blogging.
4. The Copy Cure
The Copy Cure is a self-paced course to snap you out of your writing coma. Marie Forleo teams up with copywriter extraordinaire, Laura Belgray, to spice up your writing life and help you attract clients, readers, and general buzz. Once you work through this course, writing that was once dry and lethargic will jump off the page and start twerking (at least that’s the intention behind the course). It’s a solid course. It’s not super fancy schmancy, but the content is exceptional. Plus, Laura and Marie take the puns over the top and show you how to implement their prescriptions for what ails your copy. I’m a nerd. I like word plan. Overall, it’s a great course.
5. Blog That Converts
Blog That Converts is a mix between Elite Blog Academic and B-School, but there’s only one Derek Halpbern. Derek SELLS this course. He’s got a magnetic no holds bars kind of personality. He markets his courses to men and women who want to succeed in the game of business. He’s not soft, but he’s honest. Derek wants his clients to create and grow a blogging platform that attracts their ideal clients, and he helps you to design product offerings they want to purchase. He seems to offer this course quarterly and only to subscribers. Get on his list here. Believe me, giving him your email is a good idea. He delivers. His content is solid.
Blog That Converts has uniquely helpful content that you won’t find anywhere else. Derek’s goal is to help entrepreneurs identify their ideal clients, figure out what they need, create and sell that thing, and make a lot of money. Rinse and Repeat.
He knows that’s what his audience wants. He doens’t sugarcoat it and he delivers on his promises.
The premise behind Blog that Converts is that Derek helps you create a blog and then leads you into product creation. He wants you to bypass blog monetization via ads and affiliation and move straight into product creation and promotion. His course is a great compliment to B-School because he focuses more on the blogging aspect of online business creation and promotion.
A word of warning, trying to take this course without having an end-goal in mind is a waste of money. But if you know what business you want to create and you’re willing to do the work, Blog That Converts will give you the tools to create and launch a profitable online business.
6. 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success
If you’ve ever thought about breaking into freelance writing, this course will show you how to do it in 30 days and start making money. Gina has done a really great job simplifying how to leverage the skills you already have, to start making money as a writer. Her course, 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success, isn’t rocket science, but it is a step-by-step guide to how to present your skills and experiences to snag paid and guest writing opportunities.
In this course, she covers everything. She talks about taxes, W9s, handing your finances, how to pitch for opportunities, and how to charge for what you’re worth. Working through this course, I got my first freelance writing gig. If you’re even considering freelance writing, you should take this course.
7. Become a Pinterest VA Today!
Full disclosure, I’m just starting Become A Pinterest VA Today. I’m currently in Pinterest learning mode. When I started this course, I had no intention of becoming a VA. I just wanted to manage my brand as effectively as possible on Pinterest.
You think I’m exaggerating, but no. I’m serious. So far, I’m very impressed with this course, it focuses primarily on the organization and logistics of managing a Pinterest account. The creators, Gina and Kristin, strike a careful balance between the technical side of this search engine and the logistics of managing a brand on the platform.
If you want to learn the ins and outs of Pinterest, this is not the course for you. I recommend the Blog Clarity course, PinningPerfect, but we’ll talk about that course momentarily.
The Become A Pinterest VA Today Course is for you if you want to launch a VA business. Gina and Kirstin, teach you everything you need to know about launching a VA business and helping you land your first few clients. They do such a good job that, in addition to managing my own brand on Pinterest, I’m considering taking on a few clients. It’s so much fun.
8. Blog Clarity’s Pinning Perfect
If you want to learn the ins and outs of Pinterest, Blog Clarity’s Pinning Perfect Course is totally the course for you. There are a TON ( literally hundreds) of Pinterest classes, but this one is the absolute best. One of the instructors actually has a day job that requires her to sit in Pinterest Offices and learn how Pinterest sees their platform and their recommendations for how to best use it. If that’s not insider knowledge, then I don’t know what is. If you own a business and you want to get more eyes on your content, Pinterest may be the search engine (Pinterest considers itself a discovery search engine, not a social media platform), you need to learn.
9. Stress Less and Impress (SL&I)
Leah Kalamakis offers several great programs for new freelancers. Stress Less and Impress (SL&I) outlines the tools she uses to run her freelancing business. She guides you through the tools and activities you need to effectively manage communication between you and your client from the moment a new person wants to hire you through project completion. This is a really practical program for anyone wanting to be polished, professional, and panic-free about their business so you can focus on providing the best services/products for your client (the fun stuff).
10. Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing
If you’re a blogger or own an online business, then Making Sense Of Affiliate Marketing needs to go on your bucket list. Michelle, the creator, does a superb job in this program describing (in detail) how to create an affiliate marketing plan for your blog. She goes through all of the tools and resources you’ll need. She often has discounts on the course, and she recommends free products whenever she can. Included with this program, she also manages a free Facebook group where Michelle plays an active role and answers questions for members. Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing
BONUS: Luscious Mother
Now, Luscious Mother is not actually a course. What Sarah Olin offers is nothing short of a complete lobotomy. Ok, I’m joking (but not entirely). Sarah is a coach for moms. She gets the late nights, the early mornings, the guilt, the fear, the complete joy and the absolute exhaustion of it all. She also realizes that underneath all of that mom stuff is a woman, a vibrant deliciously complex woman who wants to experience the world as the wonderfully whole person she is. If you’re ready to start living your life on YOUR terms, then Sarah will help you to set a solid foundation on which to build your new life. She’s your coach.
I know a lot of moms don’t have the money or time (sometimes both) to hire a coach, but it was the single best investment in myself and for my craft as a writer, my mommy life, and my marriage. Think lobotomy but less messy.
Ok, so in the 6 years I’ve worked as an entrepreneur, become a mom, and moved to 3 different countries, these have been the most helpful programs I’ve taken. Judge me if you want. It’s cool. We all take different paths and struggle with different demons. My demons are indecision, bouts with esteem, and a love of learning more than doing, which is a demon I’m working to excise.
Investing in yourself and in your business is a long game. You may not see immediate results but if you finish the course, your personal and professional knowledge will have expanded, and you will be a new better version of yourself.
I love courses, and I (may) have a bit of a problem. These 10, though, have been the most helpful to me. You don’t have to take them all (or any for that matter), but as you pursue professional development opportunities, these courses are worth every penny I invested, and I hope they’ll be helpful to you.