In this episode Rob and I got together again in Chiang mai for a candid discussion of online teaching in 2017. We are going to sit down and discuss more advanced topics for online teachers on Udemy and other platforms like list building and marketing tactic for our online courses. We are going to dive into the weeds of what works and doesn’t when it comes to email marketing. We also dive into how we’re using the self hosted platform teachable and even what happened to Amazon Video direct.
If you’re a videographer looking to expand your business into the world of on-line teaching then Phil Ebiner is a great role model for that. Phil is a well-known authority in the online teaching world and is a step ahead of where the trends are. He is unique in that he has videographer and photographer knowledge, but he has not pigeoned himself into just being a videographer. He shares a lot in this podcast. We talk and share tips for filming online video courses and Phil goes into depth about online marketing. He is an inspiration and proof that you can be successful while being trustworthy, transparent, and sharing a lot as an online teacher.
I believe automated flying is a next level skills once you master the basics of manual flying. I learned these skills from a South African Aerial photographer Laurence Sebereni. I took his Udemy course Phantom Film School to learn everything I knew about automated flying with litchi and more. In episode 10 of the Greg Hung show I scheduled a skype call with him while I was in Phuket Thailand. Here are some of the highlights of the interview:
- Automated flying using the Litchi 3rd party app
- Why its a good time to buy and use Phantom 3 drone and not the Phantom 4
- 360 aerial panorama’s
- 360 video
- Virtual Reality
- Flying drones in South Africa for recreation and commercial purposes
- Good locations to fly in South Africa
- The Experience of teaching on-line on Udemy and Teachable
Please Leave a 5 star Review on itunes Big Thanks
Step 1: Click here.
Step 2: Click View in iTunes
Step 3: Click Ratings and Reviews
Step 4: Write a 5 Star Review
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.
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.
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.
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)
Shutterstock – one of the sites that earns me an income licensing my video clips on their marketplace
Passive Income Report
What is passive income?
Before I start my 1st passive income report lets explain what passive income is. In my words it is a product that you take time to produce and sell on the Internet through a platform like your blog website or Amazon. If the products are digital like an e-book or a video clip you spend time upfront to create it and once you’ve put it on-line the one product can be sold to more than one customer. Because it is digital you don’t have to worry about shipping a tangible product. Payment is automated through paypal. Your products can also reach a global audience. Imagine being at starbucks. You have a starbucks employee that may be paid $15 an hour. I may be at the same starbucks doing work on my laptop At the end of the day I will have a finished digital product that can earn me revenue while I’m doing other things for no set end date. The starbucks employee may earn $90US for their 6 hours of work. The irony is that we are both working at the same location just doing different work.
Some examples of my products
I’ve been inspired by Internet Entrepreneurs Patt Flynn and John Dumas who have posted their detailed income reports on their blogs. By doing do they have inspired me and provided lessons through their successes and failures. I’ve taken some inspiration and information from them and tried to adapt them to my niche of travel, video, sharing, and inspiration. They have taken the idea of passive income that has been popularized by Tim Ferris and successfully executed the idea with a blueprint.
Although I started this entrepreneurial journey in May 2011 I made many mistakes and spent a lot of money up until now. During my time in Taiwan I have been experimenting with different business models in an attempt to see what works.
Let’s get right to it.
Timeline January 2014 – June 2014
- I’m contacted by a company in Singapore to pay me an upfront fee of $500 US to organize my video collection and host it on their website
- I manage to organize my collection and spend several months figuring out an efficient process to thousands of my video clips on stock footage sites like Pond5.com and shutterstock.com.
It was a lot of hard work to organize the footage and catelogue it, but It was starting to see sales of $20 to 60$ US come in, which was encouragement for me to continue to go forward. This was starting to become my foundation passive income stream. While I’ve not reached the point where I can completely rely on my passive income this month I feel that I’ve built a foundation and have a path to focus on efforts on that I believe I can reach my goal of being financial independent in Taiwan in the next month or two. I was teaching English in Taiwan the past 4 months, which helped supplement my income while I was building up these income streams.
I want to make American money while I’m abroad in Taiwan learning chinese and to travel more in the heart of Asia.
I currently have 2467 video clips and 120 pending video clips pending curator approval. I have just completed a trip to Japan and expect my total clips to be around 2900 after they are approved.
October’s payout will be $ 167.50 US compared to September’s payout of $279.50 US. Payout’s are on the 15th of the following month.July 2014 $167
August 2014 $292
Sept 2014 $207 US
Total $666 US
Monthly Average $222 US
Although the number fluctuates my focus will be to get the Japan footage up there as soon as I can. My footage collection for this year has been entirely from Taiwan. I will try to be creative and film footage from within Taipei to save on costs. The good thing is that there is always something to film in Taipei. There doesn’t appear to be any particular pattern to hone in on. However, I did sell one of my first gopro driving tours in Hawaii. I have driving tours in Vancouver, New Zealand, and South Africa that have no been uploaded so this is another strategy to focus on.
if you are interested in seeing my pond5 global video library currently over 3000 video clips please click on the link below. I do get a referral commission if you purchase, but it is free to browse my video collection
In October the pay out will be $226.29 US. I have 1890 video clips and 76 waiting for review. Assuming they are all approved I will have 1996 video clips before Japan’s batch. Shutterstock has a higher rejection rates. Too bad I didn’t keep track of how many approved video clips I’ve had on-line as there has definitely been a correlation with my payout’s and the number of video clips I have on-line.July $335 US
August $ 134 US
September $239 US
Total $708 US
Monthly Average $236
Combined Monthly Average $475
October Total $393.79
Shutterstock is a slightly better performer for me. I have an efficient process for getting the video clips on-line that I put together in an on-line course on Udemy. The potential in stock footage is I can leverage the existing footage I already have and rely on the stock footage sites to market and sell the video clips. Pond5 and Shutterstock combined have performed the best. I have a collection on Motion elements and a Japanese site Pixta. I haven’t seen a single cent from these sites yet. Given that Pixta is a Japanese site I may put more video clips especially from Japan and see what results I get.
Other sites that I’ve tried, but have given up on for now are Revostock and iStockphoto. I have submitted clips and waiting for a collection at T3media to come on-line shortly. Clipcanvas is another site I have read on other websites as being a strong performer. Their site has been going through upgrades lately and I just recently received an invitation to become a contributor. I plan to get a part of my collection on there to try get a 3rd revenue stock footage stream going.
Combined Pond 5 and Shutterstock deliver $474 US
Another goal is to find a 3rd site that can deliver at least $100US. That would bring a monthly average to $600US. Not a lot by western standards, but good money in Taiwan. My goal seems realistic to me given the size of my high quality collection.
Sign up for the full PDF report and you will receive the full report including income for on-line teaching and my Amazon kindle books.
On-line Teaching and E-Kindle Books
I was contacted by some people in Vancouver who were interested in attending my SLR video workshop. The problem was that I’m living in Taiwan now. As I was currently teaching English I decided that I had the mindset to create my own course on creating travel videos using video as the platform. I put in the many hours to put together an outline and film the course. I thought this would be time well spent as there wasn’t any in depth travel video courses. So let’s start with how you can make money teaching on-line!
Where to sell your video course not Youtube
I love Youtube, but I think it is not the correct platform to sell a video course. My top video “Night in Vancouver” currently has 30,000 views and I haven’t earned anything on it. Youtube surprisingly rejected my request for monetization. Even if I did monetize based on 4kdownload’s claim of $5-7 per 1,000 views it would be $210US. If I used another site’s claim of $264 per month for 70,000 views this works out to .003 per view. Ok that’s not bad. Perhaps I should look more into sorting that out. I could also leverage to the high viewership on this video to promote my course, which I do. The point is that Youtube is not the platform to sell a course. It is difficult and requires a bit of luck in my experience to get in 5 digit viewership.
I could sell it on the Internet, but then I would have to find an audience and the logistics of delivering the video to my students. A 4 minute video lecture was 422mb for a 4minute and 20 second video lecture. I could have delivered it through my website and deliver it through E-junkie the problem was that the customer would have to download it, which would take too long. I searched the Internet for the right solution and came across Udemy.com – an online teaching platform based in San Francisco.
my top youtube video Nightlife in Vancouver with 30,000 views has earned me any revenue
What is Udemy?
- They are an on-line learning platform based in San Francisco California USA.
- They are well established with over 4,000,000 students
- They have 18,000 courses ranging teaching people how to “Use Dropbox” to “teaching photography”
- They have an app for Iphone and Google Android.
What I think of Udemy so far?
It is free to become an instructor and was fairly straightforward to create a course outline and upload my video to their platform. Their website is user friendly and provides you the guidance you need to complete your course. They do a good job of packaging your course for the web. If you’re interested you can check out my course “The Art of Travel video” here.
Students can preview your course curriculum and promotional video and decide if they want to join and pay for your course. Once they join you can interact with your students using Udemy. If Udemy sell’s the course through their efforts they keep half of the revenue. Udemy has a great system for creating coupon discounts for your course. If you sell the course through your promotional efforts you keep 100% of the income minus 3% for credit card transactions.
After creating my first course I wanted to use my momentum to create my second course on how to make money creating travel videos. They have a good community through their facebook group. The members are other teachers and people that are a part of Udemy. It is useful to get feedback on your course their and ask others questions.
It wasn’t long before I got my second course on-line.
I’ve made some sales and once of the great things is that Udemy uses a non-exclusive model so you can sell the course elsewhere. The thing to be aware of is that if your course is free on Udemy you can’t sell it on another platform like Skillfeed.
Another Platform to sell your course called Skillfeed
Skillfeed is another on-line teaching platform owned by the major stock footage firm Shutterstock. I am familiar with Shutterstock as I host and sell almost 2000 video clips on their site.
If you put in the time and effort to create in my opinion it is a no brainer to sign up for free and host your course on Skillfeed.
What is Skillfeed?
- They are an on-line learning platform. I think based in New York as they are a Shutterstock company
- They are not as established as Shuterstock with 437 instructors
- They have 43,499 video tutorials. I think they don’t list the number of courses as it is still a low number.
What I think of Skillfeed so far?
I had a few minor issues uploading my videos to Skillfeed, but once up their I went through their approval process rather quickly. Their model is different as they charge their their customers a monthly flat fee for unlimited access to courses. The way you earn revenue is by the number of minutes viewed for your courses. It was quite encourage to see the number of minutes go up day by day and currently check it daily.
I have the same two courses up there from Udemy. The great thing was that it didn’t take much more work to get the same two course up on Skillfeed. I think if you’re planning to teach a course and sell them that the best strategy would be to sell both on Udemy and Skillfeed. At the moment my Gopro course is performing much better on Skillfeed than it is on Udemy. Having your course on both platforms gives you access to a broader audience.
If you found this post useful and do decide to sign up for skillfeed I would appreciate you sign up here.
It is a referral link for me. After you sign up and create your courses you can also share your experience and ask other instructors to sign up if you believe in it.
Skillshare a 3rd teaching platform
As we speak I got contacted from someone last night on email. She said she was impressed with my photography and wanted to invite me to host my content on skillshare. Here is what I know about skillshare
- 56.8K followers Twitter
- 305,000 facebook likes
- Global website rank of 9,382 on Alexa.com compared with (945 rank of Udemy and 19,661 of skillfeed.com) mostly visited my Americans.
I’m still learning more about this site, but it looks like there is a minimum requirement of 2 classes with 300+ students to qualify to get paid. I’m wondering how if this means your first 2 courses have to be free before you apply. If this is the case it is a deterrent to leveraging your existing courses on Udemy and Skillfeed. I will share more as I learn.
If you enjoyed this post and are interested in joining Skilfeed please join using this link. It will help me with a referral income and doesn’t cost you anything.
Sign up for my newsletter and I will share a PDF that covers the following:
- What tools I used to create my video and screen captures
- Tips on creating your course
- How I created the cover’s for my course on my own
- Lessons learned: what worked and what didn’t
- My revenue for the past 2 months on these 2 platforms
- Some of the tactics that I used on Udemy to earn reviews and get my first students
- A good podcast from another resource that provides strategy and tactics on Udemy and Skillfeed