Maria Reitan had a problem of the desirable variety: She had experience in a specific area that proved to be valuable to others. Specifically, she’d made a dramatic career transition, leaving the world of broadcast news after 15 years and successfully transitioning to public relations at the powerhouse agency of Carmichael Lynch.
Not surprisingly, given the myriad changes facing the news industry today, other long-time news workers wondered how she not only survived, but thrived by making such an enormous change. Thus, Jump Team Coaching was born, a consulting service to guide other former newspeople into leaving their newsrooms and finding different—and fulfilling—careers outside of news.
Looking for a Different Scale
Initially, Reitan guided people personally through coaching sessions to help them understand how their news background could translate to a new corporate career. But then she wondered if much of her coaching could be done via prerecorded videos, along with online-only courses that interested journalists could register for and take at their own pace with either occasional personal coaching from Reitan or, eventually, none at all. That’s when she reached out to Solberg Creative for help in identifying possibilities to take the business from real-life/real-time to the video model.
Solberg Creative’s Creative Director and Designer, Kerry Solberg, and Marketing Strategist and Project Manager, Carrie Stolar, went immediately to work identifying which websites are providing educational platforms that Reitan could use to launch her own courses. Preferably it needed to be a platform that was easy to use, both for Reitan and prospective students, and it needed to be something she could brand with Jump Team Coaching’s branding and logo.
Different Platforms for Different Needs
What Solberg and Stolar found was that while there were many websites out there doing this type of work, some had more benefits than others. Some sites were also geared to specific types of users that didn’t necessarily match what Jump Team Coaching needed. After investigation, they made a recommendation for a site called Thinkific, on which Reitan could place her courses as stand-alone education without personal time for each student. Solberg was able to brand the Thinkific pages to match the Jump Team Coaching website and connect it to the site so users wouldn’t notice they were leaving Jump Teacm Coaching for Thinkific. Finally, the Solberg team worked with Reitan’s website developer to make design and content updates to her site to better support the new course model. (For more information on some of the different platforms available, check out our blog post about education sites.) Reitan gave the go-ahead, and the Solberg Creative team worked with Reitan’s developer to design the Jump Team Coaching page on Thinkific, incorporating user testing and bringing in Content Marketer Amy Rea to review all text for copy editing and make sure the copy was clean and readable.
Of course, a successful project benefits from people invested on both sides. “Maria was great to work with!” said Solberg. “She knew exactly what she wanted, and had ideas for the program’s future needs. That helped us recommend a platform that would work for her both now and later, once the project has had time to mature and gain interest in the market.”
Reitan was thrilled to be able to launch this project. She noted that she appreciated how independently Solberg worked and how well they worked with the web developer. “You were good at troubleshooting and offering up solutions for me to choose from,” she told Solberg Creative, adding that if the venture is successful enough, she’ll return to have them add more modules to the courses.