What lessons can #NoMakeupSelfies teach us about marketing E-Learning programmes?


Aurion character joins no make up selfie


Unless you’ve been disconnected from the news, social media or the internet for that matter, you will have noticed the recent flood of ‘no-make-up-selfies’ for cancer research.

So what does a picture of a lady without make up on have to do with marketing E-Learning you say?

Well, first and foremost, it is an initiative to raise awareness and to inform people about something.

Just because something exists, doesn’t necessarily mean that people will act on it. It doesn’t matter how great your E-Learning programme is, if you don’t make people aware that the programme exists, then learners can’t buy into it, use it and reap the benefits from completing it.

Even if you start raising awareness of your E-Learning programme early, manage to secure buy in and support from managers and staff, you need to ensure that the awareness campaign doesn’t come to a stop. It’s important to have sustained communications to remind everyone of why and when they should complete the programme and in particular promote any success stories.

What #NoMakeupSelfie campaign does, is remind us of the power of technology and of social media in particular. In only six days, a viral marvel occurred that resulted in £8 million being donated to Cancer Research. What a remarkable achievement for something so simple.

Whilst marketing and raising awareness of E-Learning may not be on par with the sensation of no-make-up-selfies, it illustrates that if you harness the tools that are available, you can help raise awareness, inform and create a positive outcome.

Important lessons:

  • Maximise the tools you have available. Ensure you promote your E-Learning programme where your learners are. Your marketing and communications team will be able to advise what the best channels to use are, but with over 1.1bn people using Facebook, it’s a good place to start.
  • Engage and encourage interaction. The #nomakeupselfie campaign demonstrates how to share effectively. If you actively engage and encourage learners to share their feedback, results and learning outcomes from the E-Learning programme it helps spread the message and raise awareness.

View our tips on marketing your E-Learning

Please let us know your comments or share with others who you think may benefit from this. Follow us on twitter @aurionlearning for our latest blog articles and updates.

3 Tips on how to slay writer’s block

Today marks World Storytelling Day, an international celebration of the traditional art of storytelling. The theme for 2014 is “Monsters and Dragons.”

Not all of us are however experienced storytellers and have been lucky enough to bestowed the gift of the gab or the penmanship of the great writers. We’d like to think that at some point or another that even those practised and well versed storytellers have contended writers block.

In keeping with the theme of World Storytelling Day, here are three tips on how to overcome a monster (ahem!) writer’s block.

3 Tips to overcome writer's block

1. Change your surroundings

It is common for writers and storytellers to have their favourite writing spot, a place of sanctuary and familiarity to focus on task at hand, whether it’s in the library, kitchen table or like the fabulous Roald Dahl, a shed! As the saying goes; a change can do you good.  Many writers find that by simply changing their surroundings, it can work wonders and get the creative juices flowing.

2. Limit distractions and disconnect

Slaying writer’s block necessitates disconnection from disruption. If you’re intention is to get a good piece of writing done and are easily distracted, you need to limit the things that divert you away from the main task at hand.

As much as it provides a source of inspiration and entertainment, the internet can a big disturbance. Turn off your phone, close Facebook, Twitter and turn off any alerts. By doing so you’ll be much more productive as you’ll leave the distractions and be well on your way to that elusive best seller!

3. Stop thinking about it and just do it!

As acclaimed write Stephen King said: “The scariest moment is always just before you start.” Sometimes the first sentence is the hardest one to write, but the best thing to go is not to think about it too much and just start writing. The good thing about modern day technology is the back button and our ability to edit. The more you get down, the easier it is to continue, and of course, edit later!

Later this year, Aurion Learning will beta release a new bespoke toolkit for creating short digital stories. The online toolkit; storee, will allow anyone to create and share stories for free using their own narrative, video clips and photos, quickly and easily.

If you are interested in taking part in storee beta, register at holder.tellmystoree.com

So why not join in on the World Storytelling Day celebrations, get creative and tell your story. For the latest storytelling updates, follow @tellmystoree on Twitter.

Five Basic Learning Principles every L&D professional needs to know

As learning and development professionals, it is our role is to ensure that everyone within our organisation knows and understands the information they require to function effectively and are able to apply it.

With so much content available to us on a daily basis, you can easily get buried under a mountain of it before we even find what we are looking for. It is very unlikely that we are able to increase the amount of hours in a day; so instead, we’ve compiled a list of five simple learning principles that remind us how to create great learning content:

Infographic displaying the five basic learning principles all L&D professionals need to know. All information contained is in the text below.

This infographic is available for download here.

1. Boredom kills.

Neurologist Judy Willis explains that all information that comes into the brain is filtered through the amygdala. It is the area of the brain responsible for deciding what memories are stored and where.

When a learner becomes bored, the amygdala becomes hyperactive and it sends all of the information it receives to the lower 80 per cent of the brain. According to Judy, this is the “animal brain, the reactive, involuntary brain”. Boredom means that important learning content isn’t remembered.

2. Repetition rocks – use it or lose it.

Most people will have experienced the sore hand and bad hand-writing that accompanies the first day back to school after a long summer break. The same issue follows learners into adulthood. Just like the muscles in our hands, neural pathways are weakened over time. This means that if learners are not using knowledge or skills gained through training, they will begin to forget it.

3. We all have an information limit.

Educational Psychologist John Sweller first coined the term “Cognitive Overload” in 1998. The idea is that we have a finite amount of working memory at our disposal to process and understand information. When a learner is presented with information, it is important that it is delivered in bite-sized chunks which he or she can reasonably process.

4. We all need a reason.

If a learner can’t make the connection between learning content and application in their everyday life, they won’t have a reason and therefore the motivation to understand the topic presented to them. As the person guiding learning and development, it is your role to communicate expectations and the motive behind learning a particular piece of knowledge or skill.

5. Primacy – If at first you don’t succeed.

The first time learners receive teaching, it creates a strong impression upon them. It’s important to present information in a logical and clear manner at the start of any training module. The foundation of learning that you set in place becomes the map students use to navigate all further information.

We know that our list is by no means extensive; there are many different factors to be taken into account when authoring great learning content. We would love to hear what principles you think are most important when creating learning content that engages learners and have worked for your organisation. Please feel free to leave a comment below with if you can think of anymore principles every L&D professional needs to know. We would love to hear your learning and particularly e-learning successes.
Please let us know your comments or share with others who you think may benefit from this. Follow us on twitter @aurionlearning for our latest blog articles and updates.