8 Mistakes Online Instructors Make that Ruin their Career to Oblivion

Just last night, I received a phone call from my friend Jeff. He was looking for someone to talk to about his frustrations. The thing with Jeff is that he has been creating courses for the last eight months now, yet he only has a handful of enrollees. I found this to be a bit surprising since he is one of the best online instructors that I know.

Since Jeff and I go way back (we’re basically like brothers), I obliged and met with him at a coffee shop near our place for breakfast.

As Jeff and I started talking, I couldn’t help but ask him about his marketing strategy to increase awareness of his online courses.

After hearing his answer, I was mind-blown!

He said something along the lines of, “I don’t take the time to market my online courses. I know that if I just keep on making high-quality courses one after the other, people are bound to learn about them since they provide massive value.”

I cannot even begin to describe how debilitating this kind of mistake is.

It is mistakes like these that frustrate the heck out of online instructors, which ultimately leads them to quit their careers. The sad part is, that they’re not even aware that they’re doing something wrong.

That’s the kind of problem that we’re trying to remedy right now.

Table of content:

I’m going to share with you some of the most critical mistakes online instructors make. That way, if you find yourself doing any of these, then you can stop immediately and start doing the things that you should be doing to succeed. Understand these mistakes and how to overcome, if you wish to get paid to take online classes.

Let’s hop right in.

1. Waiting for inspiration to strike

Just last week, I was listening to a podcast about how writers can stay productive. While there were several quotes shared during the podcast, there was one quote from Stephen King that caught my attention.

I can’t quite remember what the quote was word per word, but it was something along the lines of, “Beginner writers wait for inspiration, while the rest of us just go to work.”

Stephen King’s quote is powerful isn’t it?

It gives us a clear picture of how even for seasoned writers, the process of writing isn’t all roses and daisies. Even for them, it requires hard work, dedication, and a solid enough backbone to be able to drag themselves to write, even if they don’t feel like it.

This is contrary to how beginner online instructors view the process of creating their online courses.

A good number of them tend to think that they should first feel inspired; otherwise, they ought not to waste their time trying to put the course together.

Now here’s the question that I’d like to ask you, “Whose ideas do you think are worth absorbing? Is it the newbie online instructors? Or is it Stephen King?”

2. Using the “Publish and Pray” approach

What is the “Publish and Pray” approach, you might ask?

It’s simple. You basically just publish your online course, then do nothing else but pray that it gets the traction that it needs. Is that enough to get paid to take online classes? Defenitely not!

Look. I’m not against people who pray. In fact, I know how important it is, and I value prayer a lot!

However, you need to realize that successful online instructors do more than just pray. They also put in the hard work to market the heck out of their online courses, to make sure that their audience knows about the existence of their course.

Considering how noisy the internet is, you can bet your family’s jewels that your online course will only get ignored if you don’t take the time to market it.

3. They price their online courses too low

I’ll admit that pricing your online course can be a bit tricky. Price your product too high, and no one will want to enroll. If you price it too low, however, your audience might think your course to be worthless. After all, why would anyone price something so low if that something is value-packed, right?

If you’re struggling with the same thing right now, here’s what I urge you to do.

You need to look at how much of your resources you’ve spent creating your online course (and yes, your time is a resource too), how your competitors are pricing their products, and how much value your online course can bring to the audience should they take action on your tips.

While there are certainly other factors that you can look into when deciding how much you’ll price your course, the points that I shared above are almost always good enough to point you in the right direction concerning how much enrolling in your online course would cost. Afterall your intention is to get paid to take online classes right? So price your online courses wisely.

4. Focusing on writing about irrelevant topics

I get it. There is certainly value in aligning your course’s modules on the things that you are passionate about, after all, if you aren’t writing about the things that you like, then there is a good chance that you’ll get burned out in no time.

We don’t want that, do we?

However, while you may be correct in writing about the things that you are passionate about, you need to realize that you are creating an online course not so YOU can learn, your online course is for your target audience — you want THEM to learn.

Since that is the case, then shouldn’t you also give emphasis on the things that they want to learn about? Isn’t it right for you to figure out where their knowledge gap is so that you can create an online course that can address it?

Friends, why don’t you do this instead? Why don’t you look for an overlap between the things that you are passionate about, and the things that your audience are wanting to learn? That way, you can be certain that there are people dying to enroll in the course that you’ve created because your target audience needs the information in your course.

5. Not choosing the right teaching platform

One other common mistake made by online instrcutors and course providers is in choosing the right online class platform for teaching. No doubt that the most popular global online learning platforms are excellent in features and usability, but are they worth your time and effort?

Picking an online training platform that is built by keeping the interests of trainers, along with providing the best learning experience for students is required. This should be considered one of the best practices for online teaching. To get paid to take online classes, you should get this right.

6. Lack of Engagement and Interactions

Online teaching and learning cannot be considered better than normal classes always. Both modes of teaching have their advantages and strengths. The main highlight of online learning platforms is that it allows both trainers and students to connect from different locations. As a trainer, you will get students from any corner of the world, which otherwise is not possible.

When completely utilizing this benefit, you should not compromise on engagement and positive interactions in your training sessions. Online classes might become boring and disengaging if the quality of content or classes is not maintained. Put extra effort to interact with the students and keep them connected to your sessions without other distractions. This is applicable both for trainer-led and self-paced online teaching courses.

7. Collecting regular student feedback

The only way you can improve the overall quality of your online classes is by collecting the feedback of the students regularly. When creating the Guruface online learning platform, we gave such features more preference as it is greatly related to the quality standards of the classes and communications. At Guruface, you get survey capabilities to collect any kind of feedback from the users.  

Doesn’t matter which online teaching platform or app you are using to conduct classes, always get feedback and make changes according to those comments.

8. Lack of preparation, updation, and improvement

Another big mistake online trainers and teachers usually make is regarding frequent updates to the process. Like in the normal teaching process, preparation, updation, and improvements to the data shared, information passed, and the way you are teaching are all critical.

As we know, the world is changing rapidly. Not just geographically, but the way people are conceiving information and how they are using the knowledge is also quickly changing. If you want to compete with the large group of trainers appearing online each day, working hard and keeping up to date with the latest standards is crucial.


Do you want to get paid to take online classes? Consider these points next time when you are trying to align best practices for online teaching. At Guruface, we want our online instructors to follow the ideal steps and become successful. We wish you good luck in your online teaching endeavors.

Trainer registration option for online instructors - Guruface

Jimmy Rodela is a contributor on websites with millions of monthly traffic like Yahoo.com, Business.com, Monster.com, Business2Community and SocialMediaToday.com. He is a trainer at www.Guruface.com that specializes in topics about earning money online and digital marketing. He is the Founder of the Guild of Bloggers. Follow him on: LinkedinTwitterFacebookRead more about me

One thought on “8 Mistakes Online Instructors Make that Ruin their Career to Oblivion

  1. Gert says:

    I want to send you an award for most helpful internet writer.

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