TeachStreet, the online community that helps lifelong learners find teachers and classes on almost any subject, is joining the "deals" space today, launching a new feature with both an online and (for now) a local Seattle deal.
This week's online deal: $59 for a 6 month access pass to Educator.com (normally $150). This week's local deal: $25 for a 3-class package at Arthur Murray Dance (normally $59). Share the deal with 3 friends who sign up, and yours is free.
"We should have done it a year ago," admits CEO and founder Dave Schappell. Perhaps. But the addition of deals to TeachStreet doesn't make sense simply because of the explosion of interest in the space. Instead, TeachStreet has spent the last year or so focused on building a vibrant community of teachers and learners. There are just under a half million classes listed on the site, offered by around 100,000 teachers and schools.
Unlike other sites that are focused on deals only and offer a range of discounted services - deals on spa services, restaurants, tours and the like - TeachStreet will remain focused on education. That means these deals will be targeted at quite a different consumer. Rather than pitching a service to someone who's on the look out for a deal - any deal - the addition of deals to TeachStreet will benefit those interested in lifelong learning and will serve as another marketing vehicle for the teachers on the site.
It will also add a layer of virality as well, as learners are encouraged to share the deals with friends in order to secure free classes for themselves. And in many ways, classes are more fun with other friends along.
Not all teachers are required to offer deals, of course. "We offer a suite of ways to use the site," says Schappell. That includes a number of other tools and metrics for teachers, who are able to see for example how many leads they have, how people view and click on their profiles, how many enrollments they've got, and so on.
Adding deals to classes makes sense as lessons are the sort of thing that you want to buy multiples of. And in turn, teachers are interested in deals as those who are willing to buy multiple sessions are probably more serious students.
But in the end, says, Schappell, it isn't simply a matter of promoting just the deals, and he thinks the new feature will be a boon to all the other class-providers on the site.