The Entrepreneur Forum | Financial Freedom | Starting a Business | Motivation | Money | Success

Welcome to the only entrepreneur forum dedicated to building life-changing wealth.

Build a Fastlane business. Earn real financial freedom. Join free.

Join over 90,000 entrepreneurs who have rejected the paradigm of mediocrity and said "NO!" to underpaid jobs, ascetic frugality, and suffocating savings rituals— learn how to build a Fastlane business that pays both freedom and lifestyle affluence.

Free registration at the forum removes this block.

Has anyone launched a paid community? or cohort?

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
I've been a tech freelancer for 18+ years...

and I feel like I should capitalize on my experience and knowledge (as I am so tired of doing the client work!)

Originally, I thought about creating a few courses to teach freelancers how to get clients (specifically developers).

But the more I research on the subject, the more I come to conclusion that selling digital products trend is going away.
(Yes there is still money there, I've made few hundred dollars selling a simple beginner's course, but course completion was low and it's not recurring.)

Communities and education platforms are the next big thing - as I see more and more creators gravitate towards community-based business model (especially post pandemic).

Anyone have experience in this field?

I want to niche down on tech freelancers (developers, programmers, web design), because, I feel that's the area I have the most experience selling and sourcing clients myself.

Should I launch cohort groups (like quarterly), for ex: "Your first client in 90 days?" or "How to do cold cold outreach?"

How do you market it for launch?

And most importantly how to deal with "empty room" effect?


Whether it's paid or free, how do I get people to come back, engage and participate in it?

Should I just go with Discord channel first and then move them to platform community?

I am stuck in client work and I cannot produce community content every day, I am afraid if I don't go above and beyond, i'll lose members.

Thank you.

P.S.
I've grown very jaded with freelancing and in a way "hate it" because, it's trading time for money. I understand that many would be thrilled to have clients, do client work and trade their time for money, I feel like it's not the best way to make money. I don't think it's relevant but every time I hear someone say,

"I want to freelance" I can't help myself to say: "It's a job without any guarantees, and you'll trade your time for money"
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Kung Fu Steve

Legendary Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
285%
Jul 8, 2008
2,751
7,835
Road Warrior
I've been a tech freelancer for 18+ years...

and I feel like I should capitalize on my experience and knowledge (as I am so tired of doing the client work!)

Originally, I thought about creating a few courses to teach freelancers how to get clients (specifically developers).

But the more I research on the subject, the more I come to conclusion that selling digital products trend is going away.
(Yes there is still money there, I've made few hundred dollars selling a simple beginner's course, but course completion was low and it's not recurring.)

Communities and education platforms are the next big thing - as I see more and more creators gravitate towards community-based business model (especially post pandemic).

In Exponential Organizations, there's the characteristic of "community" -- but I'm not sure it's along the same lines as you're thinking.

When you say community and education platform what are you talking about? An actual software to host a community on like Skool or Facebook? A membership site? Udemy?

And when you talk about creators... who are you talking about?

Specifics help!


Anyone have experience in this field?

I want to niche down on tech freelancers (developers, programmers, web design), because, I feel that's the area I have the most experience selling and sourcing clients myself.

Should I launch cohort groups (like quarterly), for ex: "Your first client in 90 days?" or "How to do cold cold outreach?"

Maybe it makes sense to ask people what they want... and then give it to them?

Do YOU have experience getting your first client in 90 days (or helping lots of people doing that)?
Are YOU an expert at cold outreach?

Have you got outsized results with your efforts with a strategy you can share?

How do you market it for launch?

And most importantly how to deal with "empty room" effect?

"Building an audience" is hard.
Using someone else's audience is easier.

Whether it's paid or free, how do I get people to come back, engage and participate in it?

Should I just go with Discord channel first and then move them to platform community?

It sounds like you're JUST starting to research an idea after seeing a Facebook ad from Alex Hormozi telling you to sign up for Skool or Dean Grasiozi telling you that, you, too, can make money from your perceived expertise.

I'm teasing, of course.

BUT you've got a LONG ways to go here.

Don't start with you, your wants, your desires -- start with your customers. Ask THEM what they want. Give it to them. Maybe a membership IS the way to go... maybe it's not!

You've sold some courses -- maybe that's a way better idea than trying to run a community (which you're not committed to because you just said:

I am stuck in client work and I cannot produce community content every day, I am afraid if I don't go above and beyond, i'll lose members.



P.S.
I've grown very jaded with freelancing and in a way "hate it" because, it's trading time for money. I understand that many would be thrilled to have clients, do client work and trade their time for money, I feel like it's not the best way to make money. I don't think it's relevant but every time I hear someone say,

"I want to freelance" I can't help myself to say: "It's a job without any guarantees, and you'll trade your time for money"

Question:

If you're not sold on the idea of freelancing... why do you think teaching others to freelance would go well?

"I hate this. It's stupid. It's trading time for money. But yeah, you can do it. It's a dumb idea, though. And you're stupid if you do it."

You might never SAY those words out loud but everyone will feel it.

Sounds like you've got a lot of soul searching to do.
 

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
You might never SAY those words out loud but everyone will feel it.

I've freelanced for too long and I feel like I need to move to the next chapter. I don't think it's bad idea for others, plenty of money to be made.

the soul searching I need is probably to allow beginners pick this path, because, to them it's best choice (Where I was 20 years ago).

It sounds like you're JUST starting to research an idea after seeing a Facebook ad from Alex Hormozi telling you to sign up for Skool or Dean Grasiozi telling you that, you, too, can make money from your perceived expertise.

haha, yeah Skool hype is out of control. I don't like the platform, though. With all respect to Sam Owens, I think it's overhyped.

I've looked at Karta, Circle, MightNetworks, Kajabi and few other smaller players. The idea of community has been brewing in my mind for past 2 years, because, there isn't much in the Tech Freelancing space that helps developers get clients or get contract work.

Some creators that are bullish on communities: Pat Flynn, Dan Koe, Al Abdaal, Ship30For30, etc - they all started with affiliate marketing and courses but eventually built communities.

Maybe it makes sense to ask people what they want... and then give it to them?

They do want that. Every freelancer I talk to struggles with finding clients and selling, especially, technical contractors.

To expand more on why I want community over courses:

It's better than building mailing list, as members are more engaged and upselling is easier.
It's ongoing steady revenue (MRR) rather than doing constant launches of new courses/product.
The networking effect is important, opportunities arise from meeting other professionals.

I want to completely stop client work and community is one of the income streams that could allow me to do that.
 

Kung Fu Steve

Legendary Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
285%
Jul 8, 2008
2,751
7,835
Road Warrior
I've freelanced for too long and I feel like I need to move to the next chapter. I don't think it's bad idea for others, plenty of money to be made.

the soul searching I need is probably to allow beginners pick this path, because, to them it's best choice (Where I was 20 years ago).

And be at peace, excited for them, and helpful along their journey.

But it is always tough to sell something you don't want to do yourself.

Can be done.

haha, yeah Skool hype is out of control. I don't like the platform, though. With all respect to Sam Owens, I think it's overhyped.

I've looked at Karta, Circle, MightNetworks, Kajabi and few other smaller players. The idea of community has been brewing in my mind for past 2 years, because, there isn't much in the Tech Freelancing space that helps developers get clients or get contract work.

Some creators that are bullish on communities: Pat Flynn, Dan Koe, Al Abdaal, Ship30For30, etc - they all started with affiliate marketing and courses but eventually built communities.

I have a Skool account for my Path.
I've had some conversations with Sam. Nice guy. He's overhyped himself on this. We disagree on a lot.
But note: The Path is not how I make my day-to-day living.
It's a community I enjoy teaching and hanging out with them.
A lot of folks in my little coaching group have received crazy results.
Some have even become clients over the years.

But Skool? At the end of the day -- it's just another website/membership builder.

It's not unique. It's not special. And you should NOT try to build a BUSINESS off someone else's platform.

You could easily create your own on WordPress.

With all the "creators" you'll notice they sell the dream more than they provide the value.

And it sounds like you're a little bought in... hook, line, and sinker :p

There's nothing wrong with building a community, teaching, charging for it -- but don't base your whole idea on "hey here's a cool platform -- I could turn this into a money making opportunity!"

... it should be more of "I'd teach this stuff in community college if I had to -- but here's HOW people want to be taught"


They do want that. Every freelancer I talk to struggles with finding clients and selling, especially, technical contractors.
How about picking 3-4 to help them for free for a case study?

See how you like it.

THEN decide.


It's better than building mailing list, as members are more engaged and upselling is easier.
It's ongoing steady revenue (MRR) rather than doing constant launches of new courses/product.
The networking effect is important, opportunities arise from meeting other professionals.

This won't translate well but you saying these 3 things tells me you're so far off the mark, it's insane.

This is the copy from those guys' sales pitches. It's good, they're right, it's a great idea.

But the difference between an entrepreneur and a wantrepreneur is that YOU came up with the idea... those 3 sentences tell me you were SOLD on the idea of creating this business in this manner... based on what you want (not what your customers want).

And look, there's nothing wrong with want those things but it's putting the cart before the horse.

I guarantee you there's not a single customer who would ever say "gee, if only I can be on this guy's mailing list so I'm upsold easier." or "I can't wait to have another monthly recurring payment coming out of my bank account!"

Focus on the customer, what THEY want, what THEY need. How THEY want to interact.


I want to completely stop client work and community is one of the income streams that could allow me to do that.

Don't hold your breath.

Income streams is yet another buzz word.

P.S. Do you realize how hard it is for people to make their first dollar teaching/coaching something? You've already done that so congrat-u-freaking-lations!

People actively said "wow, yeah, I'd buy this thing from this guy!"

And you turned around and said "nah, I'd rather not give it to you. Good luck, though!"

P.P.S. You probably can't tell my jovial tone writing this but I do find it amusing and it'd be cool to see you build a business and get out of the freelance stuff. I know how you feel!
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Paydette

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
142%
Feb 14, 2021
73
104
selling digital products trend is going away.

Absolutely not. Even selling bad digital products is not going away be a solid 70% of the population are always chasing solutions but never willing to put in the work. Something like 80% of course purchases are never even opened properly. Less than 5% fully complete a course. These people will be chasing that purchase high forever.

Communities and education platforms are the next big thing
They certainly are a new tool for the toolbelt.

I want to niche down on tech freelancers
Solid niche.

Should I launch cohort groups (like quarterly), for ex: "Your first client in 90 days?" or "How to do cold cold outreach?
Depends if you want to go for a cross industry problem or really niche down. There are many options.

How do you market it for launch?
This is why digital products will never die out. People have their own skill-sets but will never be able to do everything by themselves.

It depends on your balance of money vs time.

+Money/-Time = hire out offer build out and ads

+Money/+Time = build out your offer and run ads

-Money/+Time = you're going to be consuming digital products to learn how to organically market and build an offer or partner with an agency for profit sharing.

-Money/-Time = keep freelancing.

I've grown very jaded with freelancing and in a way "hate it" because, it's trading time for money.
Come to mama!

This sentiment is becoming ubiquitous.

To disconnect your earning from timezones, you need to productize your knowledge.

There are many ways to do this:

1: obviously, sell your knowledge

2: Change your business model. Checkout DesignJoy, a one person graphic design firm that makes $1M a year.

3: change your clientele. Start working for people with real money.

4: become a fractional -whatever. The company gets you for part of the month....often comes with performance bonuses depending on the role.

5: my growing favorite: build and release infrastructures (this is productizing your knowledge on steroids).

Youve decided to embark on a great journey. Yay!!
 

MJ DeMarco

I followed the science; all I found was money.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Rat-Race Escape!
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
448%
Jul 23, 2007
38,453
172,287
Utah
And most importantly how to deal with "empty room" effect?

It's because they start with a big social media following and redirect.

It's the #1 play in the influencer monetization playbook.
 

Paydette

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
142%
Feb 14, 2021
73
104
And most importantly how to deal with "empty room" effect?

Whether it's paid or free, how do I get people to come back, engage and participate in it?
Depending where you build your community, engagement isn't that big of an issue.

Most course owners, for example on Facebook, just use the groups as a place for course participants to sort of figure things out together (I don't like that approach)

The better ones post once or twice a week...basically setting the agenda of what participants should do that week and have a q/a session.

I am stuck in client work and I cannot produce community content every day, I am afraid if I don't go above and beyond, i'll lose members.
no need to depending how you set yourself up initially.

haha, yeah Skool hype is out of control. I don't like the platform, though. With all respect to Sam Owens, I think it's overhyped.
I like skool only bc it contains people better than FB groups. Also, you don't have to worry about reach...there's no throttling your posts.
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
There's nothing wrong with building a community, teaching, charging for it -- but don't base your whole idea on "hey here's a cool platform -- I could turn this into a money making opportunity!"

I always assumed that teaching what you know is the next logical step after doing it for a while. Hence courses/community idea came around.

Platform provides an easier start, but eventually, I'd move it over to my own platform (i.e. WP, or custom built). It wasn't the platform nor specific person that sold me on community idea. It was opposite, I wanted to community (not just a discord channel) that can host courses, live meetings, events, etc. and I started seeking the platform.

I ran OhioLair on XOOP platform (a community of pickup artists, in 2003-07) while I was student at OSU, we had 200+ members across midwest, I kind of get the gist of community. It was "Free" and I lived of donation.

But the difference between an entrepreneur and a wantrepreneur is that YOU came up with the idea... those 3 sentences tell me you were SOLD on the idea of creating this business in this manner... based on what you want (not what your customers want).

I get the "What's in it for them?" part. I teach it in my freelancing course (currently on Gumroad). It sounded me-centric because I was answering why I want community. But absolutely, for members it's support, networking, ability to ask me questions, have me review their website/pitch/approach, content that helps them become better freelancers and me inviting guests to events that can help them too.

Good portion of the community will focus on prospecting and selling, which is where most tech freelancers struggle.

P.P.S. You probably can't tell my jovial tone writing this but I do find it amusing and it'd be cool to see you build a business and get out of the freelance stuff. I know how you feel!
I like it, I like people being straightforward. Thank you for being direct.
 

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
Thank you for your reply!

A lot of good perspective!
These people will be chasing that purchase high forever.
I am still having hard time wrapping my head around this. I've bought a lot of courses. Completed 90% of them... I thought this was typical until I started researching and watching my own audience.

I sold to ~80 people a $30 dollar course on Gumroad and after reaching out to every single one of them, majority haven't even started it...

That's just mind blowing to me. Why buy? But You're right. It's just a habit for them - to seek next "magic pill".

+Money/-Time = hire out offer build out and ads
My client work earns me decent living, I can buy ads. But as I mentioned before, content and value that'd be interesting for the members is where I struggle. I can't outsource writing what I am an expert on, ...

I need to give more thought on this... I can probably hire a ghost writer or PA/VA.

2: Change your business model. Checkout DesignJoy, a one person graphic design firm that makes $1M a year.

I've researched Brett and he worked a lot, had a "mental breakdown" and had to severely cut number of clients he takes. (also raised his prices).

But he chooses to be solo, I guess.

His designs are templated and not overly customized. I had hard time fitting backend development into that. I might need to re-evaluate that approach or what I sell. Because, today, I build custom software (APIs) that are so different from one another.

5: my growing favorite: build and release infrastructures (this is productizing your knowledge on steroids).

My ultimate goal is B2B SaaS. I can build it, I can hire people to build it BUT i don't have the capital yet to pull it off (nor time with client work).

Unless you mean something else...?
 

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
It's because they start with a big social media following and redirect.
Thank you, MJ.

Having a big following would help. I am actively building my Twitter following. As you said playbook is the same, build an audience => monetize with value.

I am exploring option to deplatform that audience, and community is one of many ways. I am also building a list.
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
This was my original plan (what I can commit time and money for).

I am very realistic about what I CAN and CANNOT do.

While I have some cash to throw at advertising, I wanted to test the concept first with small audience I already have on twitter (~3600 followers, most are devs, freelancers and indie founders that freelance on the side).
  1. create a simple community on MightyNetworks
  2. add my free course ("how to get your first client as absolute beginner")
  3. move my paid course ("how to get contract work") there from Gumroad - it has sold ~80+ copies before, without me even advertising it.
  4. post 20 short articles on the subject of freelancing in the community (I have half of the drafts already, hand written over years of freelancing, just needs editing)
  5. run ads to the free course
  6. post 1 long form per week
  7. hold office hours 1-2 hours per week (in different timezones) answering questions
  8. engage with posts, answer questions, reply

once I reach engagement and member count where I feel community is active enough, I'll close free membership and charge $<TBD> per quarter.

Paid members will get access to paid course, exclusive office hours and some advanced section of the community.
Free members can purchase course independently.

I believe #2, #4, #6, #7 are good value proposition for members to get small wins and have enough engagement.

The value for FREE members (now) the "how to" content on:
- getting first clients
- creating portfolio
- prospecting
- basic selling
- cold outreach
- access to me in group calls

The value for Premium members (later) courses/content/cohorts on:
- getting bigger clients
- securing longer contracts
- negotiating higher prices
- hiring other freelancers (building a team).
- access to me in small groups or 1-on-1 consulting (Paid? Discount?)

My goal isn't to replace my client work income with community revenue immediately.

If it takes a year, I am OK with that.

My goal is to start building something that can scale as I work on it, while diminishing my client workload as time goes by.

once I start charging money for membership, I plan to run cohorts (5-10 people at a time) to get ONE specific result.
 
Last edited:

StrikingViper69

Shredding scales and making sales
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
168%
Dec 3, 2018
1,591
2,677
UK
Did you say that you’ve sold some courses?

This community thing is, at the moment, a nice idea, that you’re intending to build via social media. There are a lot of “ifs” in your plan.

Why not focus on selling more of the course and building something around that? You know it sells. Maybe you can get it going harder with ads, or use that as a gateway for your community?
 

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
Why not focus on selling more of the course and building something around that? You know it sells. Maybe you can get it going harder with ads, or use that as a gateway for your community?
Indeed.

I am moving the courses from Gumroad to Community.

So if they buy a course, they automatically become a free member of the community with access to course.

Good point on ads.

I didn't want to be just selling courses, I felt like customers are "hanging" without support. Hence community would provide a place for them to ask questions and interact with other freelancers.

So you're correct: course would be a gateway into community.
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Andy Black

Help people. Get paid. Help more people.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
369%
May 20, 2014
18,901
69,752
Ireland
I always assumed that teaching what you know is the next logical step after doing it for a while. Hence courses/community idea came around.
We're sold that teaching others is the next logical step for skilled people - aka have a skill, make money with the skill, teach others the skill.

Nothing wrong with teaching a man to fish, but remember the DIY market is very different from the DFY market. If you're good at getting and serving DFY clients it doesn't mean you're good at getting and serving DIY clients.

Anyway...

I think the world's gone mad for community. Personally, I have NO interest in running a community where I'm the expert and have to answer everyone's questions and give them more time than I do my DFY clients. I'd rather have a newsletter that is one-to-many communication rather than a community that is many-to-many and I have to monitor and act on bad advice, spam, arguments, etc.

Yep, I could have some limiting beliefs about communities, but I don't think they're the golden ticket others tout.

Speaking of limiting beliefs ... I think you've a few about courses.

I've a small course membership that I sell for $25/mth. I haven't updated the lessons in years but send email newsletters occasionally. Some people have been paying members since the beginning.

I did have a complimentary Facebook group when I started it, and did weekly "office hours" that I recorded and dropped into the courses area. I shut that down when I realised people came with the same problem week after week - because they didn't follow the lessons in the course.

My suggestion is to post your tips and content to social media platforms. Find out what resonates, build an "open" community in your comments, and get people onto a newsletter. Send newsletters that direct people back to your social media posts and build a flywheel.

Consider coregistration via Sparkloop or Beehiiv's inbuilt system. This is where you could get paid when signups to your newsletter signup to other newsletters and satisfy some engagement criteria.

Then take it from there.

Maybe a private paid community gets asked for many times by your audience? Maybe they prefer a paid newsletter and interacting on your social media profile? Who knows yet?

Private paid communities *can* be hard work to grow and manage and it doesn't sound like your reasons for doing it are quite right. I'd only do it if it's something I couldn't NOT do.
 

Andy Black

Help people. Get paid. Help more people.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
369%
May 20, 2014
18,901
69,752
Ireland
I've been a tech freelancer for 18+ years...

and I feel like I should capitalize on my experience and knowledge (as I am so tired of doing the client work!)
Back to this ^^^.

Why don't you use your skills to build something that gets you paid monthly?

Can you serve the same clients but slightly differently?
 

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
I've a small course membership that I sell for $25/mth. I haven't updated the lessons in years but send email newsletters occasionally. Some people have been paying members since the beginning.

I am interesting to hear more about this.. It's a course that they take, what do they pay monthly for? newsletter?
Or is this an ongoing course you add a lesson every month? What's the business model here?

Why don't you use your skills to build something that gets you paid monthly?
I've specialized in building bespoke backend systems for various types of clients. Hard to productize. Almost every single client came to me because, they didn't like (couldn't use) an existing product. For ex: platforms for Sports Betting Fantasy Pools, malware analytics system, ERP built specifically for client's needs and specs, Kickstarter backer eComm funnel to sell/upsell existing backers.

Basically, I don't have two clients with alike projects. In my younger days, I used to built 5-page basic websites (for landscapers, lawyers, construction companies, etc)...

but those aren't as profitable anymore.

Is there money in Paid Newsletters or is it yet-another-business model platforms like Substack pushes?

I don't even read free newsletters I subscribe, yet pay for one. I don't know many people that run those, personally, so my experience might be limited...

The Fastlane Forum is community as well. We are all members of it and engage here. But I see what you mean with "intercepting" bad advice.

We're sold that teaching others is the next logical step for skilled people - aka have a skill, make money with the skill, teach others the skill.
^ this. My skill that I sell is technical. I am programmer. But the skill I want to teach is getting clients (sales, self marketing, prospecting, etc). I never wanted to build courses around coding or teach others how to code.
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Andy Black

Help people. Get paid. Help more people.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
369%
May 20, 2014
18,901
69,752
Ireland
It's a course that they take, what do they pay monthly for? newsletter?
Or is this an ongoing course you add a lesson every month? What's the business model here?
As mentioned, I've not updated the lessons in years. People pay to have access to the library of lessons and SOPs, and for the sporadic email updates. I occasionally get replies to my emails and answer those questions in another newsletter.

I've specialized in building bespoke backend systems for various types of clients. Hard to productize.
What would make it easy to productise? Or what product or productised service can you offer?

Basically, I don't have two clients with alike projects.
Cool. The hurdle you've just identified could be turned into a stepping stone.

I used to built 5-page basic websites (for landscapers, lawyers, construction companies, etc)...

but those aren't as profitable anymore.
Aren't they?

I suspect it's your business model.

I bet there's someone out there running a business knocking out 5-page lawyer websites and has a portfolio of them paying $XXX/mth for the site, plus $X,XXX/mth more for content and other lead gen services.

Is there money in Paid Newsletters or is it yet-another-business model platforms like Substack pushes?
There's money in everything. It's down to implementation.

Market Beat is a paid newsletter that does millions in revenue a year.

I don't even read free newsletters I subscribe, yet pay for one. I don't know many people that run those, personally, so my experience might be limited...
What free newsletters would you read? What if there was someone explaining how frustrated freelancers could move from changing time-for-money to building assets they own? If the subject matter was right, then how would it have to be written for you to read it? (AKA... put yourself in the shoes of your potential target market and think what your preferences are.)

My skill that I sell is technical. I am programmer. But the skill I want to teach is getting clients (sales, self marketing, prospecting, etc). I never wanted to build courses around coding or teach others how to code.


From everything you've said, I suspect you're not fully leveraging your current skills, knowledge, and experience. Could someone else with your technical programmer abilities have build a business with semi-passive MRR that exceeds your current monthly freelancer earnings?

This might help too. Turn those BUTs in your mind into ANDs.
 

Andy Black

Help people. Get paid. Help more people.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
369%
May 20, 2014
18,901
69,752
Ireland
I've just remembered this:


FYI: I was an IT contractor for 10 years, and have been a Google Ads "freelancer" (with a small team) for a further 15 years. I have consulting clients. I have clients that still pay me for work done years ago (we send weekly reports and they never respond). I've a few people buying courses. And I'm building my own stuff.
 

Paydette

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
142%
Feb 14, 2021
73
104
I bet there's someone out there running a business knocking out 5-page lawyer websites and has a portfolio of them paying $XXX/mth for the site, plus $X,XXX/mth more for content and other lead gen services.
My first agency still does this. Something like 50 templates...super optimized and beautiful. Change colors and a few sections here and there.

Optimized to get people contacting the business.
From everything you've said, I suspect you're not fully leveraging your current skills, knowledge, and experience
THIS IS SOLID ADVICE, OP.

Entrepreneurship is different from having a skill. I see problems needing solving EVERYWHERE. You just see limitations.

Change your attitude.

"Everyone has a website....but they aren't happy with them... bc they don't convert well...and they all look alike" all problems needing solutions.

Everyone has a website = can I offer something other than a website

They aren't happy with the conversion rates = what can I do to improve that?

They all look alike = can I create something unique.

Have you head of GHL? Good enough software...ugly websites. There's a great opportunity there.
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
Aren't they?

I suspect it's your business model.

I bet there's someone out there running a business knocking out 5-page lawyer websites and has a portfolio of them paying $XXX/mth for the site, plus $X,XXX/mth more for content and other lead gen services.
Good question. It was, because, I didn't have enough leads in pipeline, so I switched to longer contracts (it obviously takes months to build a full scale CRM, compared to productized website).

I was young(er) and didn't want to "chase" clients. Retrospectively, with skills I have now, I can re-visit that business again.

I never gave that business model a thought once I left it for custom soft development.

Back then I'd get $3-5k per site, but those large scale dev projects would be $50-100k and would last for months (+ ongoing maintenance rates).

I do need to re-evaluate that as potential avenue.

Also Imposter Syndrome especially in consulting.

People pay to have access to the library of lessons and SOPs, and for the sporadic email updates.
I didn't think people would pay for it monthly, ... I thought most want to buy and keep the course (downloadable). Hmm...

Thank you for the links. I will read them.

A lot of fresh takes on this thread I did not think about or considered.
 

MichaelKove

Contributor
Read Fastlane!
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
137%
Feb 19, 2019
30
41
Szczecin, PL
Entrepreneurship is different from having a skill. I see problems needing solving EVERYWHERE. You just see limitations.

Change your attitude.
Funny how it can be difficult to notice it from inside until someone points it out.

I would sit down and make a list of different business ideas (with my skillset) and play devil's advocate with them... "this wont work because,....", "this is probably bad idea... ", "this wont scale,..." "this would get stressful...."

It's refreshing to have someone remind that attitude blocks a lot of opportunity.
 

Paydette

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
142%
Feb 14, 2021
73
104
It's refreshing to have someone remind that attitude blocks a lot of opportunity.

This is the right attitude to have. Self-reflection and not taking it personally.
Always think of yourself as a problem solver and you'll become exactly that.
 
Dislike ads? Remove them and support the forum: Subscribe to Fastlane Insiders.

Andy Black

Help people. Get paid. Help more people.
Staff member
FASTLANE INSIDER
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
Read Fastlane!
Speedway Pass
User Power
Value/Post Ratio
369%
May 20, 2014
18,901
69,752
Ireland
I would sit down and make a list of different business ideas (with my skillset) and play devil's advocate with them... "this wont work because,....", "this is probably bad idea... ", "this wont scale,..." "this would get stressful...."
I cover this in the two threads I linked to.

Maybe check the first couple of rows of links in my signature too.
 

Post New Topic

Please SEARCH before posting.
Please select the BEST category.

Post new topic

Guest post submissions offered HERE.

New Topics

Fastlane Insiders

View the forum AD FREE.
Private, unindexed content
Detailed process/execution threads
Ideas needing execution, more!

Join Fastlane Insiders.

Top