I need your help

Last week I was supposed to deliver a webinar. A webinar that didn't happen because I didn't get enough registrations to pull it off. The webinar-that-wasn't.

Here's how I went about making the plan for this webinar. I've been listening to homeschool parents I coach, reading blog post comments, and also just know from years of experience what homeschooling feels like this time of year. I know that homeschoolers struggle with motivation issues - their own and their childrens'. I know because I am a homeschooler and because I spend a lot of time communicating with homeschoolers. So I thought a motivation webinar would meet a real need.

This would have been the third group coaching webinar I've done. The other two were Homeschooling from the Heart and Learning in Love.

This webinar was more expensive ($25) because I was offering more. More written material to accompany the audio, e-mail communication, and a mini-ebook of scheduling ideas. And more means I'm giving more of my time and energy and therefore adjust my prices accordingly.

Perhaps it was too expensive? Perhaps homeschool moms don't need all that? Maybe people just wanted the audio file? Maybe it was just a bad time for lots of people?

How am I to know?

Ah... they make tools for this. They're called surveys. I've never run a survey on my blog before. This is a first.

I want to help you homeschool in joy and freedom (as I work to make this a reality in my life every day). Actually, I want to help people in general live more creative, healthy, and adventurous lives (as I work to make this a reality in my life every day). But right now I'm focusing my energies on the homeschool crowd. I want to offer coaching and teaching specifically for your needs. But I need to know that what I'm offering is meeting your needs. And the webinar-that-wasn't makes me think I'm not.

I thought I had a sense for what would benefit the homeschool community here at FIMBY but now I'm not so sure.

I'm in the midst of writing my first ecourse - for homeschoolers. I'm investing a lot in this and I want to make sure I'm hitting my mark.

Would you be so kind as to complete the following super-easy-peasy survey? And if you're reading this in a reader could you pop over to the blog today?

I would appreciate it so much. Even if you're not a homeschooler, there's a little check box for that.

I think there's something here with this homeschool support and coaching. Or so they say. I'd like to know how to best serve your needs doing work I love and helping to support my family.

Created with Survey Monkey free online surveys.


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  • Patraq

    Patraq on March 7, 2013, 12:18 p.m.

    Hey, Renee, I can't find the survey. Point me to it?

    Meanwhile, I will share that I just have a hard time doing live events, (The webinar was in real time, right?) Scheduling issues, getting all 3 kids occupied at once . . . It's a lot. So I am much more inclined to sign up for a self-paced workshop/course. I'm already interested in your e-course!

    Hope this helps. I purchased the audio from a past event, and I loved it. I just need to do it on my own time.


  • Julie

    Julie on March 7, 2013, 2:22 p.m.

    I agree with Patraq. I was very interested in the material but found it hard to commit to the day and time. My husband's schedule is always changing and our computer is located in a central location in the house so I didn't feel I would be uninterrupted by the kids. I would love self-paced sort of material. Thanks for your work, Renee! You have a great deal to offer the homeschool community..


    • renee

      renee on March 7, 2013, 2:47 p.m.

      This is fabulous feedback already. I was sort of thinking along these lines. Thank you for leaving the comment. 


  • heather

    heather on March 7, 2013, 2:58 p.m.

    hey renee! i can't view the survey either, but would chime in that a set time is a little hard to commit too. one of the things i love most about online learning is the (often) self-paced nature to it. :)


  • Tonya

    Tonya on March 7, 2013, 3:45 p.m.

    Yes, yes Renee! I have purchased one of your audio webinars - after they happened. I also can barely find a moment to speak on the phone - so being able to pace myself in the learning would be much better. Like Heather's whole food course, I enjoy looking over the material throughout the week and applying it to our family as I am able.


  • Melissa

    Melissa on March 7, 2013, 4:26 p.m.

    Hi, just a heads up that the survey option isn't showing up on an iMac. Interestingly, it looked like I could have accessed it from my Android reader.

    I'm not a homeschooler, however, like those who've already chimed in said...a real-time webinar can be challenging to attend or commit to if people are worried about things cropping up at the last minute. A product that can be downloaded at the customer's convenience might sell better. Also, if cost is an issue consider splitting out your offerings...audio, email support, and ebook so that people can pick and choose if they don't want the bundle at $25.

    Another thing that I've observed on other blogs when the bloggers attempt to start charging for specific content...backlash or low sales. My sense of it is that people are conditioned to seeing and accessing 'free' content. Not everyone is, but many are. And those that are count in your site hits but aren't necessarily your market for sales.

    As for motivation and helping people with that...there may be a broader target market...or at least the outdoor oriented but not the homeschooling base you're reaching out to from a blog that does offer more than that. If that makes any sense.

    Hope that helps as much as a survey would.


  • Julie

    Julie on March 7, 2013, 4:47 p.m.

    Renee, your blog is fabulous, and I hope these webinars take off -- you have so much to offer! Here is my 2 cents. The time issue with a set webinar is one thing. The other thing is that there is a LOT of free homeschool information on the web. A LOT. As a result, people have a difficult time paying for it. I think that is why so many mommy bloggers end up monetizing their blogs in less transparent ways -- sponsors and affiliate programs for example, or else they sell concrete things (products they make -- I am still wishing you would sell your soap) where people are more apt to pay for them. Have you considered focusing more on individualized, one-on-one coaching, at a time convenient for the coach-ee? I know you do this already, but I think that is a very good niche. Start with a low price to build the market. As a camping family, I also feel like the above poster there is something to be done with kids in the outdoors that could also be a revenue source -- there is WAY less practical inforamtion about that on the web. But I'm not really sure the best way to go about that. Good luck!


    • Alaina

      Alaina on March 9, 2013, 1:38 a.m.

      I agree with this that there is a big need for practical info on how to do outdoor things with kids. I read a lot of your articles on the other site but I am always thinking of things I wish I knew more about. It would be helpful to have more wisdom from a family who is ahead of us in that area.


  • Anonymous

    Anonymous on March 7, 2013, 5:03 p.m.

    As a response to the last comment, I would like to say that, yes, you offer a lot of free homeschool advice that I personally have read over several times but I would still purchase an online course or something of that nature. There is a ton of free advise on the internet about whole food eating but it was so helpful for me to have an online course that I committed myself to when taking Heather Bruggeman's Whole Food Kitchen class. I realize not everyone feels that way but I just wanted to encourage you to not give up on selling content.


  • Julie

    Julie on March 7, 2013, 5:24 p.m.

    Let me clarigy -- Renee, I think the information you offer is very valuable and you SHOULD be paid for it! I personally LOVE your ebook on salads and was happy to have purchased it. I just think people struggle paying for such things because they wonder if they can find it for free on the web. I wonder if you can offer something tangible along with the webinar that would entice people more, in the way people can get recipes with Heather's class. A customized written schedule/plan for each participant? Inspiring or motivational writings? Something that your kids can share? Some cross-promotion with other blogs? Just brainstorming things that would make more people willing to take the step of paying -- I'm sure once they do, they will feel certain it is worth it.


  • Ariana

    Ariana on March 7, 2013, 6:24 p.m.

    Hi Renee! Just going to comment quickly to let you know that I agree with the comments above in regards to webinar scheduling. I am currently taking Heather's WFK class and love that I can treat myself to a few moments here and there to read through her content, rather than commit a few hours all at once. I end up taking in all that I can in small snippets, processing it, then returning to the material when I am fresh and ready for more. Such a great feeling. I would LOVE to purchase this course from you but the webinar format is less appealing than online course with audio/materials to sort through at times that work for my schedule.

    Thanks for all that you offer!



  • Rana

    Rana on March 7, 2013, 7:09 p.m.

    Renee, I agree with the others also. If you set something up like Heathers WFK workshop, I am so there. I have also purchased one of your other webcast and it was great being able to listen and take notes on my time which was late at night after everyone was asleep. I could really focus on what you were sharing. I look forward to being apart of your next class.


  • Leah

    Leah on March 7, 2013, 7:12 p.m.

    Hi Renee, I was commenting on your survey and got cut off mid sentence ;) I was going to say, You have created such a phenomenal resource for people here, it is inspiring. Given my current family situation, I would be more inclined to register in a food for family/whole food seminar. Nevermind picky kids, If you tackle the topic of dealing with picky husbands, I will be your first to register!


  • Brenda Anderson

    Brenda Anderson on March 8, 2013, 3:46 a.m.

    For me it was the set time - I love what you do - but trying to commit to a time with my husbands varied schedule and an on demand nursing baby - along with all the other sweeties running around....


  • Morgan

    Morgan on March 8, 2013, 4:41 p.m.

    Hi Renee! I filled out your survey yesterday and it reminded me that I wanted to ask - have you made the transcript/recording from your Homeschooling during the preschool years available for purchase? As many commenters above noted, I wasn't able to sign up because it was a set time and wouldn't work for my current mama situation of chasing a toddler around. I would love to still access the information.


    • renee

      renee on March 8, 2013, 5:29 p.m.

      Morgan, the preschool recording is available for purchase here. Thanks for asking. Maybe I forget to mention that on the blog.


  • Jacinda

    Jacinda on March 8, 2013, 6:22 p.m.

    Sorry, I can't see the survey on my mac. I've really enjoyed all the supportive comments and agree if I were to purchase something it would be something i could listen to in my own time. I feel I don't have a need to purchase something as general as "motivation" but what i did purchase recently was "The Everyday Language Learner" package thanks to you;) This was information that was new to me, that I hadn't read on the internet already and I can listen to in my own time.


  • Lisa

    Lisa on March 9, 2013, 1:43 a.m.

    Hi I can't find survey button on my iPad. I am not into webinars. I am into ebooks that I can read at my own pace. I loved your Nurturing Creativity ebook. I have homeschooled for 13 years. I never tire of reading about homeschooling ideas. I just don't like listening to lectures....I like to learn when I want to learn what I want to learn! :)


  • Lisa

    Lisa on March 9, 2013, 1:44 a.m.

    Hi I can't find survey button on my iPad. I am not into webinars. I am into ebooks that I can read at my own pace. I loved your Nurturing Creativity ebook. I have homeschooled for 13 years. I never tire of reading about homeschooling ideas. I just don't like listening to lectures....I like to learn when I want to learn what I want to learn! :)


  • Anonymous

    Anonymous on March 9, 2013, 1:45 a.m.

    I also think overall people will be more into it if they can do it on their own time. I am just not in a spot where I can pay for something like that right now, although its totally worth it and I think you have a lot to offer. I hope you have success!


  • Anna

    Anna on March 9, 2013, 4:51 a.m.

    Renee I am not a homeschooler, but perhaps an unschooler with my three kids

    Take a look at Carla Sonheim's stuff. She runs online classes, started small and is growing it every year. People are looking for community and that's what they will pay for. $25 is not too much money. You are on to something here don't get discouraged I run classes, and lots of times I have to cancel due to low enrollment

    This is probably a bit much for a comment, but wanted to encourage while I had 5 minutes. I have lots of experience in business and teaching if you want to email me. Good luck Anna


  • Anonymous

    Anonymous on March 9, 2013, 9:29 a.m.

    Hi! I was able to surprisingly access the survey on my Android phone. Just a friendly heads up to those having trouble.


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