How to increase engagement in online training

11 Outreach and Engagement Strategies for Your Remote Learners

Fostering engagement in your remote training program is essential.

If you think your program is working well, it’s still a great time to look closely at how engaged your team is with what they’re learning.

There’s always room for improvement!

Wondering how to start developing a remote training program? Start with Blended Learning Fundamentals, An E-course by Talance, Inc.

Training Engagement Is Important!

Engagement is important for online learning—especially with remote training.

If your participants aren’t really engaged with the material or program, they’re not really learning. By supercharging their connection with courses, you give them the best chance of success with training material.

Not being engaged in learning is a waste of time for everyone — and remote training can be time-consuming if you don’t manage it well.

It’s a waste for the learner, who feels like they’re taking courses only because they’re forced to.

It’s a waste for you and other stakeholders, because you’ve made a big investment in training, and you need your staff trained and equipped to do their job.

So read on for some outreach and engagement strategies you can use to connect with your learners and help them connect with the material.

Ready to start engaging your learners? Check out what we do, and then contact us for a free consultation.

11 Engagement Tips for Remote Learners

  1. Form partnerships with other programs and organizations
  2. Get learners invested in their own learning experience
  3. Remind early and often
  4. Make sign-up easy
  5. Introduce participants in person
  6. Hold an orientation
  7. Identify champions
  8. Invite groups
  9. Offer takeaways
  10. Get them involved beforehand
  11. Go beyond reminder emails

1. Form partnerships with other programs and organizations

Team up with similar or complementary programs or neighboring organizations, and ask them to co-promote the online course with you. You can often learn from them and share your strengths so learners get the best of both.

2. Get learners invested in their own learning experience

Adult learners are not the same as children learners. However, they’re too often treated the same way with education.

Kids will (mostly) do what you tell them to do. Adult learners need to see the benefit to them in learning. This helps them become invested in their own training.

So spend time expressing the benefits of your training program. It will make it more fun for everyone.

3. Remind early and often

The average person must be reminded of something 18 times before they act on it. This means you should notify participants of your new course sooner than you think and more often than you think to keep engagement high. Look for ways to promote that include your staff’s e-mail signature and newsletters. Just keep putting the message out there.

4. Make sign-up easy

Broken enrollment forms, difficult enrollment forms, multi-step enrollment forms–they’re all bad news when it comes to encouraging registration. Make it brief and easy for people to sign up. It’s also a good idea to provide a phone number in case someone needs technical assistance when signing up.

5. Introduce participants in person

Mingling in person before the course begins is a great way to introduce learners and begin forming relationships. Once they’ve made a positive connection, they’re more likely to participate in an online course. This happens naturally in a blended learning environment, but you can offer an orientation (see below) or a meet-and-greet where people can shake hands.

6. Hold an orientation

If this is the first time you’ve offered an online course, some of your potential participants might feel unsure about the format or technology. Make engagement easier by introducing them slowly. Hold a no-obligation orientation, either online via a webinar or in person, depending on your audience.

Once people see how easy it is to take a course online, they often feel more confident about enrolling.

7. Identify champions

Some staff members will feel more passionately about online learning than others. These are the ones you want to enlist in order to boost engagement. Those who have experience with remote training see the benefits and will help evangelize for you. They’ll help push your promotional efforts so you and your immediate staff aren’t the only ones.

8. Invite groups

Inviting groups is more efficient than inviting individuals. Emphasize your training is for groups of three or more, or push it to managers rather than learners. This technique also gives the groups a way to learn together and find ways to apply their knowledge to the workplace.

9. Offer takeaways

Dangling carrots are a great motivator and can help you boost engagement throughout the duration of your program. Offer a benefit of some kind that is only available upon successful completion. This might be a certificate of completion, compliance with a job, a workbook or forms, or even physical tools.

10. Get them involved beforehand

Find ways to get participants’ engagement in the training before it even begins. Increase participation early on by inviting learners to submit questions to the instructor before enrollment. Another idea is to create polls or surveys whose results will feed into course content.

11. Go beyond reminder emails

Sending reminder emails is useful and relatively easy, but sometimes it’s not enough. Depending on the size of your group, you might try other ways to remind people to enroll, including phone calls, posted notices or postcards.

Check out some other delivery trends for professional development programs.

Blended Learning Fundamentals — an E-course by Talance, Inc.

Blended learning is here to stay. But what exactly is it and how do earn buy-in from your organization and staff? This e-course covers everything you need to know about how to prepare for a blended learning project.