In the last decade, the way I learn dancing and sewing (and everything else in life) changed dramatically.
When I was interested in learning something, I used to look for a local teacher that teaches that subject.
Today I look for an online course.
I DON’T think online courses replace in-person learning.
But they definitely compliment and/or enhance in-person learning.
Tiffany Noro, the founder of the Bellydance Bundle, has worked with Sahra Saeeda to make Sahra’s years’ work on Egyptian dance history available online.
And this year, Tiffany is bringing over 15 belly dance experts together to make special belly dance knowledge and ideas available to you at a huge discount!
I’ll tell you more about the Bellydance Bundle (& a giveaway!) in a minute.
But first, let me introduce you to the lovely Tiffany and how she helped Sahra bring her audience online WITHOUT losing the in-person connection. 🙂
Taking Your Audience Online
By Tiffany Noro
Building an online business can be tricky.
But as dancers, we have an advantage: The community comes built-in.
I first met Sahra in 2010, I believe, when I first took JtE-1 and -2 in San Diego. She pretty much exploded my world, revealing an entire side to dance that I’d never considered, let alone researched. You can read more about the Journey Through Egypt program here.
Photo is of Sahra and I in 2015 in Aswan, Cairo after the graduation dance for JtE-4
After that experience, I voraciously consumed classes on folklore and culture, trying to grow this part of my practice that I hadn’t even known needed help! Reviewing my notes one day for JtE, it hit me that only having this workshop available in person was a limiting factor for not only Sahra’s growth, but in the number of people who could experience it.
So, about two years after I had first taken the course, I messaged Sahra out of the blue and asked her to lunch. I had a business proposition for her. I created a 10-page sample of Journey Through Egypt 1 as a book, built from the notes I had taken during class.
I worked so hard on that sample. It was gorgeous.
I felt compelled to expand the reach of JtE, to make more dancers aware of what was out there, and I knew that the internet was the way to do it. I watched several other niches moving online and I could see the potential for greatness there.
Sahra was, to my everlasting surprise, totally on board. While we ended up shelving the idea of a book version of JtE due to various factors, several other options became available.
We started working together to move the JtE brand online in a bigger way, updating the website, working on content, and working on the best ways to bring her audience online and get them used to seeing her there.
With the built-in community she’d already developed through authentic in-person interactions, it was a much easier transition than expected.
Sahra had been generously sharing her knowledge for years, and her audience clamored for more info! It was a win/win for everyone.
It’s been 4 awesome years so far:
- We’ve run a wildly successful Kickstarter campaign that allowed us to transfer over 300 research tapes to a digital medium which we’re FINALLY almost ready to put out there as a membership program.
- We’ve recorded JtE-1 and -2 for the creation of online intensives.
- We’ve been able to build JtE levels 3 & 4 up to higher attendance levels.
- We’ve funded far more research into the Sa’idi region in preparation for a new ebook series.
In-person workshops will never go away in our field, but online courses and digital study materials are making their way to the forefront as practice materials and supplements to those in-person interactions.
If you’re considering creating an online course or workshop, test it out in person first. Utilize the dance community in your area. This is a huge benefit when creating online content. Grab a test group and go to town. What works? What doesn’t? Incorporate that feedback to create the best content you can!
The JtE intensives, as they are today, are the result of over a decade of direct testing in the market. Sahra knows what works, what doesn’t, and what to push to other levels. That knowledge is only borne from running them for so long in person.
Our dance relies so much on community, and without that community we’d all have a much harder time of it. Reach out to your fellow dancers nearby, make friends at conferences, and create your network. When it’s time to create that course or workshop that you’ve been dreaming about, they’re going to be an invaluable resource.
There’s room in our world for both studio workshops and digital ones, and when we combine them, we’ll find that perfect combo that not only gets us the expert training we need from what’s available nearby, but what’s available worldwide.
My “day job” is in the Location Independent niche, helping people start businesses that don’t have a physical location so they can travel the world while they work. The opportunities are endless for applying these same concepts to Bellydance.
However, Bellydancers, as a whole, are a bit behind the times. Online courses are still relatively new in our field, and many dancers aren’t aware of what’s available to them. It occurred to me that I could help change that.
This October I’m bringing together The Bellydance Bundle with the help of over 15 different teachers from around the world who all have online courses and products! We’re bundling together some of their most popular products and selling them at a steep discount for 7 days. Learn about new teachers, enhance your dance practice, and let’s start a conversation about working and making a living online!
Thank you for this interesting and inspiring post, Tiffany!
As I mentioned earlier, Tiffany has teamed up with over 15 belly dance experts around the world to make a BIG bundle of online belly dance resources ($800+) at a HUGE discount. It’s called the Bellydance Bundle.
It will fill the knowledge gaps that you’ve always wanted to fill, like culture, history, costuming, and/or techniques, which your local teachers may not offer.
Check out all the Bellydance Bundle contributors here. Sahda is one of them of course. I feel so honoured to be listed among all these amazingly talented people!!! 😀
Win a FREE copy of the Bellydance Bundle!
Now the Bellydance Bundle is already an awesome deal….
But Tiffany is giving away a FREE copy of the Bellydance Bundle to 1 lucky winner!!!
As you can see here, there is over $800 worth resources included in the Bundle, including my Dina Bra from Scratch Premium Course 😀
So there’s no reason why you shouldn’t try your luck!
Thanks for reading, and keep sparkling! 🙂