If I had it my way, **every text in the world would fall into one of the following two categories**:\n\n* literature;\n* lists.\n\nThe first type helps you immerse yourself in what’s been written and enjoy the text. The second, however, provides structure that helps you better absorb information and make informed decisions.\n\n_Here is a new article is about creating your first academy, fitting nicely into a list of seven steps. : )_\n\nAcademies are most useful if you **educate visitors before they’ve even become your customers**. We have written a simple algorithm composed of seven steps to facilitate the creation of academies with this task in mind.\n\n1. **Choose a target audience for the course.** This could be your entire audience or some segment of it. Maybe marketing specialists, agencies, athletes, hotels, banks — it depends on who your target is.\n2. **Find this target audience’s problem or a question you can help them solve.** For example, “How can I always have information about my clients readily available?” (for CRM), or “How can I lower employee turnover rates?” (for human resources management).\n3. [**Create content**](https://artplusmarketing.com/tagged/content-creation) **that answers this question or presents a solution to this problem.** Often, part of this content already exists (on your company’s blog, in your Help Center, or in whitepapers). For the first course, 8–10 lessons should be enough, each of which can consist of one page of content (text, images, screenshots, or videos).\n4. **Put together a course from the resulting content.** Consider what you would like to get out of your learners as a result. What target action will you prompt learners with the end of the course? (sale, demo request, call, registration).\n5. **Show the course to your current visitors and customers.** Tell them about the launch of a free course on a topic that’s important to them (a link in the footer of your site, an email, social media posts).\n6. **Use the course to find new clients.** Visit sites where your target audience spends time, find their questions, and give them answers, adding a link to your course. Inviting people to a course is far simpler than inviting them to a blog or whitepaper. A course is understood to be more valuable.\n7. **Process new leads.** Put together a process for entering information about learners for your sales and customer success teams. It will be important for them to know how many courses a learner has gone through in the academy, which materials they have learned, and at what point they stopped their education. **Your sales specialists will be able to sell better, and your customer success team will make customers happier** : )\n\n!(https://hackernoon.com/hn-images/1*GGt2dKmv_k5mQehZu-BvXg.png)\n\nIn seven steps, you have created a course that will attract leads.\n\n**But what else will you get out of an academy?**\n\n* **Learners see you as an expert** in the industry, and, consequently, trust you more.\n* You get data on each of your learners (and **you can better understand their needs**).\n* You get data on course content (and **you can better understand what information is interesting to your target audience** and, on the other hand, what information doesn’t draw them in).\n* If you reward learners with certificates for completing courses (one of the features of an academy), then afterwards learners will be able to share them on social media. **You will get good PR and organic traffic out of this**.\n* You can get to know your audience better with the help of the quiz feature. You can ask learners questions while they are in the process of completing a course. For example, you could ask, “**Which of the problems mentioned earlier have you encountered in the past?**” or “**Which products have you used in the past?**”\n* You get **a new tool for lead generation**. Moreover, this tool works with all channels of traffic (emails, socials, [Facebook](https://hackernoon.com/tagged/facebook) ads, [Google](https://hackernoon.com/tagged/google) ads, guerilla marketing, etc.). In fact, learners themselves are far more likely to leave their email address before starting a course, because **they are not treated like leads** (as is the case if you ask them to enter their email before downloading a whitepaper), **they are treated like learners**.\n\nOnce you successfully launch your first course, it’s **easy to scale your academy**. All you have to do is choose a new audience or a new question to answer, and you will be able to easily create a new course. And, as a result, you will again be able to attract potential customers.