About a year ago TeachStreet took a quite radical step and switched the freemium model into premium only for teachers. I amongst others saluted Dave Schappell and the team for this move.
Today Dave posted an update on the TeachStreet blog, announcing that the basic listing on the platform will be switched to free again. On the other hand the “Teacher Request” feature will become part of the paid services on TeachStreet.
Of course, I will try my best to get Dave for a short interview but in the meantime you can already watch his video below in which he explains the changes on TeachStreet in detail.
Now what I can read from this are two things. Number one is that TeachStreet wants to attract new teachers, probably to make sure that there are enough of them to match the rising number of students. On the other hand free listings can be a good incentive to try the service out, maybe get first bookings from students and hence convert into a paid user of the platform in order to get the premium features.
Which brings me to the second point of “Teacher Requests”. We know this concept from WizIQ already as the platform launched its “Learner Requests” back in April 2009. The idea was (and still is, if I am not mistaken) basically the same. Teachers either pay for the all inclusive premium account and get a number of requests for free or they pay for individual access to the learners.
From the teachers perspective you have to keep in mind that this is the gold standard, the silver plate you get a potential customer served on. What better potential lead there is than a student who is actively posting a request for a lesson? Rhetorical question as there is no better than that! All you need to do as a teacher is to come first and sign the deal.
As Teacher Requests have seemed to be very popular right from the launch it also means that the need of keeping the class listing “clean”, which has been one of the reasons for changing the TeachStreet platform to premium, is not a top priority anymore. If students prefer to post a request and wait for the teachers to answer instead of browsing and comparing the listings the need for tight categories is decreased.
As an incentive to go for a TeachStreet Pro membership, teachers will get unlimited enhanced listings (otherwise $3 per listing) and 10 TeachStreet Credits per month (3 needed to accept a Teacher Request).