Blog Post

4 Ways to Increase Learner Acquisition

Dr. Anderson Campbell
April 16, 2024
4 Ways to Increase Learner Acquisition blog thumbnail

Looking to attract more learners to your online academy?

Then it should be simple for people to access your learning management system (LMS)—meaning as little friction as possible.

Here are some ways to think about removing friction in the signup process:

1. Set Up Single Sign-On (SSO)

It takes more time and resources upfront, but this is easily the best experience you can provide for customers and employees accessing your LMS.

Not only does it improve the experience, but it makes it easier to tie activity records to the right contact in your CRM.

2. Limit the Number of Form Fields

We tend to ask for too much information upfront—and end up missing out on new learners in the process.

Ask yourself: What information do you need to collect when the learner initially registers?

This is typically first name, last name, email address, and possibly the company name.

The key here is: Fewer fields = less friction.

If your online academy is part of your marketing efforts, and your team is concerned about GDPR or CCPA for email opt-ins, you might also include an opt-in checkbox.

3. Capture Additional Information with Progressive Profiling

Marketing teams have long been employing the power of progressive profiling. That is, capturing new information about users over time.

You can do this in a number of ways:

Ask questions during onboarding.

After your learner registers for your LMS, consider asking them a series of questions—and let them know it’s to personalize their learning experience.

Learners can always opt out of providing this information, but many will answer the questions as part of onboarding. Where they may not have been willing to answer questions in the form, most learners are familiar with the post-opt-in onboarding experience.

Collect more information in the learner profile.

You don’t have to ask for everything upfront. The learner profile can be a great way to encourage learners to share more about themselves. 

How do you get learners to complete their profile? Gamification can be a great strategy! Look at how LinkedIn does this:

Shannon Howard, our Director of Customer & Content Marketing, shared another example from her previous role as the Growth Product Manager for a learning product. "We wanted to find a way to get more learners to complete their profile. We dedicated to run an experiment to see if adding a visual for profile completion would motivate people to add more information. It did! Some people just like to see that circle at 100%, what can I say?"

Here’s one more example (from Partnerships Experience Academy) of how you can drive learners to complete their profile:

Ask questions in courses and content.

As learners progress through your content, you can collect more information there as well, perhaps as part of adaptive learning paths. In the flow of learning, you can capture additional information and write it over to the learner’s profile. 

4. Sync Data Across Platforms

It should go without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway: Make sure you’ve got bidirectional syncs set up across platforms. This includes your LMS, CRM, marketing automation platform (MAP), customer success platform, etc. 

Why are these syncs important? Let’s count the ways.

Data syncing allows you to personalize the customer experience. 

If you’re collecting information about a customer in one place, why wouldn’t that data be accessible for other purposes? For example, to personalize learning or segment communications.

Your LMS data is a treasure trove of first-party data.

The second reason is: The information you collect in your LMS has value for other teams. Your marketing team is hungry for first-party customer data—and you can collect that in your LMS as part of the learning experience! 

Education activity can inform customer health and lead scoring.

The educational activities your customers and prospects participate in can inform conversations for customer success and/or sales.

Most customer education programs are positioned to support customer retention and satisfaction. If that’s the case, then it’s safe to assume that customers who engage in instructor-led training, certifications, or on-demand learning are more likely to renew. That’s helpful for customer success teams to know. 

If you’re using customer education as part of your marketing strategy, engagement with learning can factor into lead score. Going back to Shannon's experience in the Growth PM role, she shared, "We included course completions and certifications as part of our lead scoring efforts—and tracked learning activity in Salesforce to inform sales conversations." Close partnership with your marketing and RevOps teams can inform these decisions and their execution.

Streamline Learner Acquisition With Intellum

From flexible gating options to SSO, the Intellum Platform was purpose-built for a great learner experience. In fact, it’s a big reason why Partnerships Experience Academy chose Intellum.

Want to see what Intellum can do for you? Meet with our team to find out.

About the Author

Dr. Anderson Campbell Speaker Headshot
Dr. Anderson Campbell
Sr. Product Marketing Manager
Anderson weaves years of academic teaching and learning experience into his current role at Intellum, where he blends his extensive background in higher education with innovative product marketing strategies for corporate education tools. As a former professor and a holder of a Doctorate in Leadership, Anderson’s approach to product marketing is deeply informed by his passion for education and commitment to help others grow into the best version of themselves.