How to compete and succeed in today’s saturated info market (FS342)

What are the necessary steps to take to start selling online courses? Do you need to be at a certain level before you should start thinking about that at all? How do we pitch online courses at the right level and niche to maximize our reach and potential? The world of learning and the promotion of web-based resources and teaching has evolved very quickly over the last few years and as it has grown and changed, new companies have sprung up and filled spaces some of us never even knew existed. With the multitude of options out there, you might be wondering where can you content fit in and if there is even space for you? In this episode, we have a big discussion on this fertile topic, looking at pillar content, accelerator models and the big one: personalization and segmentation! Our panel of guests gives amazing perspectives on referrals, […]

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How to Improve Audience Engagement Without Writing 10 Times More Content

The answer to, “How do I get more engagement, more traffic, more search engine authority, more sales,” or more of anything else of what you want is often: “Publish more content.” But there comes a point when creating more content is a recipe for flat-out exhaustion. I had a fun conversation with copywriter and teacher Belinda Weaver last week, which you can check out on the Copyblogger FM podcast: How Copywriting Teacher Belinda Weaver Reenergized Her Email List for Massive Engagement. She had a great archive of blog posts, but they weren’t really doing much for her business or her audience. Robert Bruce, in a site review over at Rainmaker Digital Services, gave her some advice: Take that content, turn it into an ultra-engaging email sequence, and load up your autoresponder. (For more details on that, give the podcast a listen — Belinda shares lots of the details that made […]

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Passive Income & Building A “Perennial” Business (FS313)

As a business owner and soon-to-be mother of two, I’d love to share what it’s been like to design a passive income business that has supported my family and family life over the past 10 years. I still remember the week before I got married… I was working hard on a client project, and suddenly I had to put in a ton of overtime to get it launched when timelines changed and a contractor backed out. It was stressful, and I vowed that I’d find a way to make my business support my life, not the other way around. Fast forward a few years later… My husband joined the business. Now all of our income was dependent on the business. We decided to start our family, phased out all client-facing work and moved to digital products entirely. There was a slight dip in income that year, but we re-calibrated. Our […]

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Introducing AMP’d Up Podcasting—My New Advanced Podcasting Course!

Introducing my brand-new advanced podcasting course: AMP’d Up Podcasting! Too many podcasters are powered up, but falling flat. Don’t let that be you and sign up for AMP’d Up Podcasting today. Pat Flynn March 25, 2019 A couple of weeks ago, I shared some stories of SPI audience members who had taken my Power-Up Podcasting course and used what they learned to not just build a better podcast, but to use that podcast to grow and improve their business. It’s awesome to see how so many podcasters are doing life-changing things with their show, and taking their businesses to heights they probably never imagined! As much as ever, I’m a big believer in the power of podcasting. But there’s a sad lining to this story, and that’s what I want to talk about today. Too Many Podcasters Are Powered up but Falling Flat At the same time that many podcasters are […]

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15 Free Online Business Courses You Can Take From Harvard, Yale, MIT and Other Amazing Schools

15 Free Online Business Courses You Can Take From Harvard, Yale, MIT and Other Amazing Schools Offered by: Harvard University Course description: “This is CS50’s introduction to computer science for business professionals, designed for managers, product managers, founders, and decision-makers more generally. Whereas CS50 itself takes a bottom-up approach, emphasizing mastery of low-level concepts and implementation details thereof, this course takes a top-down approach, emphasizing mastery of high-level concepts and design decisions related thereto. Through lectures on computational thinking, programming languages, internet technologies, web development, technology stacks, and cloud computing, this course empowers you to make technological decisions even if not a technologist yourself. You’ll emerge from this course with a first-hand appreciation of how it all works and all the more confident in the factors that should guide your decision-making.” Enroll for free here   Read_more Related posts: Get Smarter About Business Cheaper With These 10 Free Online Courses […]

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Announcing SPI-ber Monday Deals!

It’s SPI-ber Monday! Deals last until Tuesday at 11:59 p.m. Pacific! Save on my brand new online course, Smart Podcast Player, my current courses, and the brand new SPP Sticky Player! Pat Flynn November 26, 2018 Welcome to SPI-ber Monday! A brand new course I think you’ll love! A special Smart Podcast Player deal—plus a new player for subscribers! And major discounts on all of my current courses! What occasion could possibly bring all of these awesome things together in one place? What could cause the stars to align like this? Get ready for the very first SPI-ber Monday (get it? Haha.)! As you may know if you’ve been following me for a while, you know that my passion and mission in life is to help people. I do that by showing how I’ve grown my online business, and how others can start and grow their own businesses too. SPI-ber […]

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My March 2017 Monthly Income Report

Welcome to my March 2017 Monthly Income Report. Fun fact: This is the 102nd monthly report published here on the blog. As always, I’m happy to share with you what happened during the past month, from the actions taken to the lessons learned, and, of course, the earnings report and where it all comes from. March was an extremely busy month, but also very exciting. A lot of hard work from the past six months paid off in March, and I’m stoked to talk about the results of two course launches that happened. Yes—two courses. 🙂 Am I crazy? Probably, but also very excited to be moving forward with the goals I set for myself and the business. With no more delay, let’s get right into it. Important Goings-On in March Two courses? Yes. Let’s start with the one that’s more well known, Smart From Scratch, which opened up for […]

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SPI 304: Building an Online Course From Start to Finish

Last year I built three online courses—premium courses that people paid for—as well as a fourth free course. They’ve been working like gangbusters: In 2017 I earned $1 million in revenue from online courses alone. Online courses have been an incredible experience for me, and today I’m sharing the ten steps you can take to create life-changing online courses for your audience. Why are online courses so great? Why wouldn’t you do an online course? Does it make sense to do an online course? Does it best serve your audience? Today we’re going to get into all of these questions and a whole lot more. (I hope you brought a notebook!) I hesitated about building an online course for so long because, well, I was too afraid to sell to my audience. The big realization for me? You can sell and serve at the same time. And, I realized that I […]

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The Year of Online Courses (The Results. The Good. The Not so Good.)

One of my 2017 goals was to create and launch powerful online courses. Learn what went well, what could be improved, and what my plans are for 2018. Pat Flynn December 18, 2017 Last year, when I was setting goals for 2017, I knew that a primary strategy for my business was going to be creating and launching effective and in-depth online courses for the SPI audience. One of the motivating factors for this was to significantly transform the way I generate income. You see, for the past eight or so years of running Smart Passive Income, I’ve generated the majority of my income from affiliate marketing. I wanted to change that in 2017. I needed to add some nuance and diversity into my income portfolio. I needed to add different, and significant, pockets of value. Now, I still think affiliate marketing is a fantastic way to generate income, and […]

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My July 2017 Monthly Income Report

Welcome to my July 2017 Monthly Income Report. Thanks for checking it out! Each month, I write a detailed report about my online businesses, including what I’ve been up to, the lessons I’ve learned, and, of course, the money I’ve earned online. I’ve been publishing these reports since October 2008, so make sure you check out the income reports page if you’d like to go back in time and check out the complete history. If this is your first time at Smart Passive Income (SPI), thanks for being here. SPI was built to serve others by experimenting with my own trials and errors. Sometimes the business experiments I try work well, and other times they don’t. But each time there’s a lesson involved that I can pass on to you so you can have better insight and knowledge moving forward with your own business or project. Smart Passive Income isn’t […]

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31 Tips from 31 Course Creators on How to Build and Launch a Successful Online Course

Entrepreneurs from various niches share their number one lesson learned from creating an online course. Pat Flynn August 7, 2017 This was my first year experiencing what it was like to create and sell online courses. With one public course launched (Smart From Scratch®) launched earlier in the year, and another one that just launched last month (Power-Up Podcasting®), I’m already experiencing the benefits I always heard other course creators talk about: Increased income, yes. But, more importantly, increased amounts of success stories. Truly, there’s no better way to package up information you have to solve a problem, and provide a win for your customer while also getting paid at the same time. As an advisor now to Teachable, the online platform I use to host and sell my online courses, I knew there were tons of other course creators out there—many more and different experiences than my own—who could offer […]

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SPI 254: Lessons Learned While Testing and Launching My First Online Course

Next week is the official launch of Smart from Scratch®, my very first online course, and I couldn’t be more excited. It also feels like the perfect time to look back on my previous launch experiences and explore what I’ve learned about creating, testing, launching, and maintaining a product. Before Smart from Scratch, there was Breakthrough Blogging, my first membership site. I eventually ended that project after realizing the crucial things I’d overlooked when designing and launching it. Those mistakes, however, helped me fine-tune future launches and gave me a deeper understanding of how best to serve this audience. In this episode, I want to share what I fixed about my launching strategy. You’ll hear what I’ve learned about validating product ideas, pricing a course, building community, and creating a product I can stand behind. You all have taught me so much about crafting the best resources possible. I’m thrilled to share Smart from Scratch with you […]

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How to Get the Most Out of an Online Course

Whose responsibility is it when it comes to the success rate of an online course? Put another way: if one of your students fails to see results after buying access to your online course, is it your fault, or their fault? Responsibility lies with both parties, but the fault of a failing student depends on a number of factors, which I’ll dig into here in this post. Whether you sell (or plan to sell) online courses, or you’re a student who takes online courses, increasing your success rate is a worthy target. Let’s talk about how you can do that. The Course Creator’s Responsibility All of this is on top of my mind because on Monday, February 27, my brand new online course, Smart from Scratch, will go live. It was first launched late last year to a limited number of students on a very specific segment of my email […]

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7 Lessons I Learned While Testing & Launching My First Online Course

I’ve learned seven essential and inspiring lessons while testing and launching my first online course, Smart From Scratch, on Teachable. Pat Flynn February 6, 2017 In October 2016, I opened my first online course to a limited group of founding students. You see, just as you need to validate your business idea, a concept I unpack in my book, Will It Fly?, I needed to validate the idea for my online course. After all, it was my first and I had no idea how people would respond. In early October I launched Smart From Scratch® to 100 students. Less than a day later, every spot was filled, with the waitlist growing rapidly. I was amazed by the response! From October through today, the feedback and constructive criticism I’ve received about the course has been so invaluable. At each stage, my team and I took that feedback and applied it directly […]

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SPI 251: (In the Middle) Launching a New Course with New Entrepreneur, Sarah Argenal

I’d like you to meet Sarah Argenal, the creator of Working Parent Resource. Sarah knows all about balancing raising a family with pursuing your career, and she’s in the midst of creating and launching an online course to help working parents like herself. I’ve have the pleasure of getting to know and mentor Sarah through a series of “accountability calls” as she builds her online course, and today, we’re going to check in on her progress. Sarah’s worked hard to validate, build, and promote her course. She’s grown her email list, surveyed her prospective customers, and created valuable course content—all while balancing a full-time job. In today’s call, she and I will walk through what’s working and what can still be improved. I’ll share my advice for tweaking her messaging, attracting future students, and taking her course to the next level. This episode is a rare opportunity to eavesdrop on an entrepreneur mid-process. Join Sarah and me for […]

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SPI 243: How to Create Your Life Vision Plan with Michael Hyatt

Today’s episode is all about goals: setting them, achieving them, and knowing when to change them. And who better to talk about achieving great things than Michael Hyatt? Michael’s the mastermind behind so many amazing projects, including the This Is Your Life™ Podcast, Living Forward, Platform University, and an online course called 5 Days to Your Best Year Ever. That course, which I’m taking this year, is packed with incredible lessons in goal-setting and focus. I’ve invited Michael here today to learn more about the strategy and wisdom that went into this incredible course. In this episode, you’ll hear Michael’s expert advice for pursuing the right goals in the right way. You’ll also hear about his experience validating business ideas, creating online courses, building a community around those courses, and lots more. This is one seriously value-packed episode—don’t miss it! Let’s Start 2017 Together! I’m taking Michael’s new course, 5 Days to Your Best Year Ever! I’ve already […]

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SPI 233: A Not-So-Overnight Entrepreneurial Success Story with Shayna from Espresso English

I’m back with another online business success story I know you guys are going to love. Today’s guest is Shayna Oliveira, founder of EspressoEnglish.net, and she’s brought some words of wisdom on the long and unpredictable road to entrepreneurial success. When Shayna published her first ebook back in 2012, she didn’t wake up to overnight success. In fact, six months into building her online business, she was still only seeing small, incremental growth. That didn’t stop her, however. Through hard work, persistence, and smart strategy, Shayna transformed Espresso English into her full-time source of income, allowing her to quit her day job and focus on teaching English to her devoted online audience. It’s easy to fixate on the flashy, exciting “overnight success” stories of the online business world. But it’s stories like Shayna’s—where smart, committed business owners pursue their goals in spite of daunting odds—that pack the truly valuable lessons for aspiring entrepreneurs. Enjoy! Thanks for Listening! Thanks so […]

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SPI 222: The Right Products at the Right Price Point with Ramit Sethi

Ramit Sethi is back on the show this week, and as usual, he’s brought some serious strategy with him. Today, he’s talking all about matching your digital products or services with the perfect price point for your audience. I discovered Ramit and his blog back in 2006, before I became an entrepreneur myself. He taught me valuable lessons about online business, building wealth, and designing an income. Ten years later, he continues to teach me so much! I’ve invited him on the Smart Passive Income Podcast twice before (for Episodes 92 and 170), and it’s my pleasure to have him back today. You’ll hear Ramit’s hard-won wisdom on identifying your audience’s pain points, designing the product they crave most, finding qualified customers, and guiding them through to purchase. Ramit also gets honest about pricing your products, the danger of discounts, and how often he sees entrepreneurs fail to value their products appropriately. This interview is packed full of expert […]

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SPI 219: How Meghan Telpner’s Culinary Nutrition Academy Makes You Rethink Traditional Online Courses

Meet Meghan Telpner, founder of The Academy of Culinary Nutrition, an online certification program with a jaw-dropping 97 percent success rate. Meghan’s students are clamoring to pay top dollar for her nutrition certification course, and I’ve invited her here today to find out why. Before creating her wildly successful online course, Meghan taught aspiring nutritionists out of her home, but meeting demand wasn’t easy. Transitioning to online meant she could reach a greater audience, generate more income, and enjoy more time to herself. That transition has paid off in a huge way: Not only is her course more successful than ever, but Meghan was also just ranked as one of the top 100 female entrepreneurs in Canada by PROFIT magazine! Meghan’s course requires a serious investment from its students—financially, energetically, and mentally. Today, Meghan’s going to share exactly how she attracts students willing to make that investment, how she continues to grow her course, and […]

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Strategies for Getting Course Customers to Take Action

This month we’ve been talking a lot about online courses. We’ve spoken with people who have created successful online courses and to those who have even created online course software. There’s a lot of material in the Smart Passive Income archive where we’ve talked with people who have launched and successfully profited from creating online courses too, including SPI 136: How to Build an Online Course that Sells with David Siteman Garland, and SPI 137: A Product Launch Sequence That Works—How to Create a 3-Part Video Series with Amy Porterfield. In this post, I wanted to highlight ten specific strategies to help your course customers follow through and take action on what you’re teaching. One of the biggest struggles course creators have is trying to get course customers to take action. The reason why that’s so important is common: Online course creators spend a bunch of time building the courses, […]

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