The startup, backed by Andreessen Horowitz and focused on audio learning, has been known to switch business models.
When the company started last year, it calculated users per class. Starting today, we’re moving entirely to a subscription model, with listeners paying $ 50 per year or $ 9.99 per month for unrestricted access to the Knowable library.
“This brings us closer to our mission of daily, actionable learning,” said Co-Founder and CEO Warren Shaeffer. In other words, the subscription encourages people to treat learning from Knowable as an ongoing habit rather than a once in a lifetime experience.
After all, he said, Knowable is already seeing a cross-purchase rate of 24% when students sign up for new courses. In this way, the company can also learn about other formats, e.g. B. shorter lessons. And it̵
But why should you focus on audio at all? Shaeffer said that he and co-founder Alex Benzer “both saw firsthand that a great teacher can change a person’s life,” but at the same time they didn’t have time to spend hours watching videos.
“Everyone [online learning company] Today is very focused on the idea that you have to stare at a screen to study in a structured way, ”said Shaeffer.
They also saw a lot of people listening to podcasts when they want to learn new things. The couple created Knowable with the idea that while out for a walk you could easily spend that time on what Benzer calls “nutritious” content rather than a “low-calorie podcast about real crime.”
“Warren and I personally look forward to helping people spend less time doing fearful doomscrolling and more time finding optimism and confidence through self-directed learning,” he said.
Courses include Alexis Ohanian on entrepreneurship, Mark Bittman on good food, and various public speaking experts.
Shaeffer says there are now 100 hours of educational content in the Knowable library – about half of that is Knowable originals created by the company’s producers (Knowable’s content team is currently headed by former This American Life producer Amy O’Leary), the other half comes from a new, curated marketplace where anyone can apply to sell a course.
Shaeffer added that the content is “audio first, not just audio”. Yes, you will mostly hear the lessons, but there is additional material like quizzes and workbooks.
“We think audio is a great catalyst for inspiration,” he said. As a result, Knowable has focused on “soft skills” in categories such as professional development, self-improvement and health.
But he also suggested that it was a “fallacy” to believe that audio cannot teach more specific hard skills: “If you want to become a programmer, let’s imagine a course where someone can get an overview of the You can learn and it becomes a launch pad for a deeper dive. “