The number one question I receive from other teachers who want to teach online is, “Where do you get your students from?”
There are a million and one ways to get students: Most of them include starting up a website, driving traffic to your site, and then converting that traffic into trial lessons. But, if you’re new to online teaching, then there is something that you can do right now to get your first student(s). All you need is Skype, a Paypal address, and this easy method.
It took me a while to start doing this. I wanted to do the complicated things first before actually getting started. So, I built my website, advertised, did a whole lot of posting in forums and classifieds, and got a few students.
Then, after getting my schedule around half-full, I decided to contact some of my old students from Spain to see if they would like to take lessons online with me.
Three students signed up straight away. The funny thing is, I didn’t need to build a site, think about my marketing plan, or do anything else to achieve this. If you’re new to online teaching, I suggest that you do this first. The transition and learning curve will be much easier if you get something started with familiar students. And, it’s easier to move forward once the ball is rolling.
Posting on Facebook or Twitter is just hoping that someone will bite. Instead, contact each student directly and take the time to write them a nice, personal message; ask them about their English learning and their life; offer them a twenty minute free catch up on Skype so you can convince them to start taking lessons with you again.
The Newbie Approach
Don’t have any past students? How many non-English speaking friends (or contacts) do you have? Would they be interesting in talking to you online to improve their English? Offer them online lessons for a great price, and then, once you start gaining confidence and improving as a teacher, ask them to refer you to their friends.
Sometimes getting started is the hardest part. But, there is no better way to get the ball rolling by getting a student, getting paid, and taking it from there.
So, start TODAY and get teaching online. Then, come back here and let me know how it went.
Photo Credit: Marco Raaphorst
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