NSCAD Masthead Sm-17
Online Course

 Turn your Talent into a Business

This course is specifically designed to teach the fundamental business knowledge needed to turn creative skills and talent into a business. Students will learn how to design a business model, as well as understand the basics of marketing, including how to identify and reach potential customers both online and offline. We’ll look at different ways to price and sell products or services, touch on basic financials, and review how soft skills like networking can dramatically impact the success of your business. We’ll also touch on how to develop a brand, how to optimize a website, and ways to make the most of social media. We'll also look at how to identify risks, and avoid common business pitfalls and mistakes. This course gives you the tools you need to plan and start a successful business. 

Course Objectives:

  1. Evaluate and validate a business idea to determine the likelihood of success
  2. Create/improve a basic business model around an idea from start to finish
  3. Identify and reach new potential customers online and offline
  4. Learn marketing techniques to effectively promote a business and increase sales
  5. Evaluate and overcome common obstacles to improve online and offline sales
  6. Understand and create basic business financial information


Weekly Schedule:

Week 01: Business Ideas and Research (Classroom Session)
This week, we’ll discuss what makes a solid business idea, what kind of research to do and how to do it.

Week 02: Value Propositions and Customer Profiles (Classroom Session)
We'll start with an introduction to value propositions and get a solid understanding of why it's the foundation of any business and can be used to find new customers and effectively market a business.

Week 03: Vision and Validation
Just because an idea looks good on paper, it doesn’t mean it will be successful. This week, we’ll discuss the three crucial questions that must be answered to validate your business idea, as well as tools to help. 

Week 04: Marketing(Classroom Session)
We’ll examine how marketing is directly related to your business goals and break things down into easy-to-understand pieces. Then, we’ll look at how to ensure your message is put in front of the right people - your potential customers. 

Week 05: Branding and Your Message
This week we’ll talk about blogging and social media, as well as what makes a strong brand and how to build yours.

Week 06: Business Case Collaboration (Classroom Session)
This week, we’ll
 put our heads together in the classroom to bring everything we’ve discussed thus far together, and if time permits, we’ll examine each person’s business idea and collaborate on how to make it even better. 

Week 07: Distribution, Relationships, Activities and Risk
We'll examine your distribution channels and customer relationships, identify the key activities required to start and operate your business, as well as examine how to identify and overcome obstacles.

Week 08: Costs, Pricing and Revenue
This week we’ll look at how costs impact your prices, look at a few different approaches to pricing, and examine some of the ways you can bring revenue into your business.

Week 09: Revenue Projections and Cash Flow (Classroom Session)
This week we'll examine revenue projections and cash flow, learn how to tackle each and keep things on track, as well as review other business equations and financial terms useful to any entrepreneur. 

Week 10: Soft Skills and the Sales Process
This week we'll examine the small things you can do to streamline the buying process for customers and make yourself a more effective sales person both offline and online.

Additional Information:

Each week, there will be a presentation and a few short exercises to complete, totaling about 3 hours of work per week. New online course content will be released at 8:00 a.m each Thursday. Class #1: Business Ideas and Research, Class #2: Value Propositions and Customer Profiles, Class #4: Marketing, Class #6: Business Case Collaborations and Class #9: Revenue Projections will be classroom-based sessions. Online content will be released after the classroom sessions at 10:00 p.m. To receive feedback from the course instructor before the next class, homework tasks or emails must be submitted by midnight on the following Sunday.