In the business of adult lifelong learning, whether a prospective learner will choose to participate in an educational experience you offer and how much she is willing to pay (if anything) depends on a range of intersecting factors, but four stand out in my experience.
To what extent do I believe this experience will enhance and elevate my capabilities? What’s the evidence?
What are the potential short- and long-term career benefits – for advancement, higher pay, recognition, etc. – that align with this particular educational experience?
What is the potential for this educational experience to connect me to others who can extend and enhance my capabilities and/or to the above career potential (through placement-type services, networking, etc.)
How much “credit” will I get for this. Not just – or even mostly – in the sense of continuing education points, but rather how much will my participation in this experience be valued by those in the career and connection areas above? Does it make me perceived as more valuable? Does it help me perceive myself as more valuable?
You can, of course, score yourself loosely on these. How well do the positioning and promotion of your educational offerings address these points?
If you are honest about it, it can be a simple, eye-opening approach to how you should focus your strategy and resources for the foreseeable future. Keep in mind, though, that a smart learning business will always have its eye on all four.