How I built an Internet business without a large audience

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Greg Hung. SFU MBA  Ex IT manager from Vancouver. Aerial Video producer and Digital Nomad in Taiwan learning Mandarin

How I built an Internet business without a large audience

I studied Chinese until the end of February and then took time to work on my business. I started teaching English in Taiwan during this period to give me more time to figure it out. During this time I discovered Internet Entrepreneurs like Pat Flynn that were providing the motivation and advice that I was looking for as an Internet Entrepreneur. For me this was a huge to realize there were like-minded people that were sharing great advice that I can relate to. The problem was that they encouraged the growth of an email list or an audience. I only began to set up my site to do this last month. I took stock of my audience across platforms.

General Vancouver mail list ~ 1000

Chicvoyage travel Email list: < 50

ghung twitter 110 followers

chicvoyage twitter 67

chicvoyage youtube 136 subscribers

chicvoyage fbook 261 likes

google plus chic 11

pininterest 19 followers

I know these are low numbers, but I still managed to build an Internet business . How did I do it? I used platforms and marketplaces with a built-in audience. Pond 5 is a market place where contributors can license their video clips off the Internet. Graphic design firms or media agencies can come here to purchase video clips for their video projects. Teaching platforms like Udemy are a place for students to come to learn from independent teachers that are teaching anything from IT certifications to yoga. How did I fare on these platforms and marketplaces. Well read on…


One of many video clips I have licensed over the Internet. This one was shot at the Kruger National Park in South Africa

In July 2014 I began to have some success licensing my videos over the Internet. The industry term for this is called Stock Footage. With Stock Footage I consistently reached $500 US (622 CDN) a month. In July I also discovered teaching courses on-line in September and that also become a regular income stream contributing about $100 US (124 CDN) monthly. In Canada this may not seem like that much, but in Taiwan living costs are cheaper, and because of better public transport there is no need for a car. It was motivating to begin to earn my income off the Internet passively and I began to think there may more a lot more potential here.

In September I had 2 video courses, and released a 3rd in October. In December I released a 4th course before going to Vancouver. Writing on Amazon kindle books also became a new revenue stream as well as a outlet to write about my personal travel journey’s. I released 4 books on New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa with the Taiwan Working Holiday in the works.

How I built an Internet business in without a large audience
I began to teach courses on-line like this one

At the end of the year I spent time to film new footage in Vancouver and make upgrades to my websites with a goal of building an audience. The Chicvoyage Travel will focus on Internet entrepreneurship, travel and the Digital Nomad lifestyle in Asia from a North American perspective. Chicvoyage Productions will focus on showcasing my video portfolio, how-to tutorials, and to showcase the stock footage collection. I also did my first paid talk in Vancouver as well as some Entrepreneur interviews and realized I really enjoy doing this and would like to do more of it.

How I built an Internet business in without a large audience
my old downtown apartment in Vancouver 2011

These years of being an Entrepreneur has been a humbling journey.  I lived a good life by Vancouver standards. I had a good job, downtown apartment, and a nice car. I now live a more simpler life, but still good lifestyle in Taiwan. After returning to Vancouver it was great to see my family and old friends after my longest time away from home. However I felt I must return to Taiwan and Asia to accomplish my goals. I want to learn Mandarin Chinese and build my Internet business.

How I built an Internet business in without a large audience
My simpler convenient apartment in Taipei Taiwan

 

How I built an Internet business without a large audience
2014 milestones as a digital nomad

Summarizing 2014

Going into 2015 the plan is to scale what I’ve done on a larger scale. I realized that I scrambled and hustled to get things done at the expense of quality. I would like to put more time into fewer things in 2015 and focus on providing better quality products. Here is a snapshot of my passive Internet Income.

Lessons learned in 2014

    • I should start focusing on building my own audience on my blogs
    • Although my Chinese is not fluent conversational yet, I made a large improvement in my Mandarin Chinese in terms of speaking, reading, and typing
    • I reached a new level of confidence and independence from being able to build a new life in a new Chinese speaking country on my own
    • I discovered people I can learn from on the Internet through useful blogs and podcasts from other Entrepreneurs
    • I made an Internet business in 2014 without a large audience that has room to grow!
    • Because Internet business allows you to reach overseas customers from a lower cost country this could allow me to combine with the best of both worlds. Earning American money from a low cost environment.

Resources mentioned in this article

(some of these are referral links where I may make an affiliate fee for clicking on them. Thanks)
Pat Flynn – success Internet Entrepreneur and coaching and teaching many on the Internet
Udemy – learn from instructors on the Internet
Skillfeed – One of the 2 platforms I teach to earn an income on
Shutterstock – one of the sites that earns me an income licensing my video clips on their marketplace
Pond 5- one of the sites that earns me an income licensing my video clips on their marketplace

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