How to organize paid content - English teaching website

9 replies
Hello there and sorry in advance as I'm a beginner here!

I am a teacher and I'm starting a blog/website about teaching English online in Spain. I'd like to provide readers with as much free content as possible, but I want to monetize my efforts at the same time. The idea is to create a niche site and over time create different products I could sell, but I need your help as I don't know how to organize the content so that I always keep something up my sleeve in terms of back-end products.

I want to provide courses for different levels, I've set up my podcasts with a proper microphone and I'm providing grammar, lexicon, exercises, etc. I also wrote a guide on how to properly study English as a second language. But my fear is...if I provide them with a lot of high quality content, how am I going to sell any back-end product later? Having grammar explained plus podcasts and exercises for downloading is already very good. And the thing is, I first need to build authority with free/hquality content plus seo and indexation so I can sell anything later, so I can't just make the site live with paid options from scratch. Also, I'm not very keen on metered content or paid suscription sites.

My ideas for back-end content so far:

- my language guide on how to learn, properly designed and expanded, as an e-book/pdf.
- all the content from the blog in PDF and designed material with additional didactic videos and audioguides.
- full programs with pdfs, videos, audio and a guide for official exams and certificates.
- coaching
- maybe an app for studying and listening to my podcasts on the phone, but I don't know how much this could be.
#content #english #organize #paid #teaching #website
  • Profile picture of the author JJPerkins
    "so I can't just make the site live with paid options from scratch"

    Why not?
    Sounds like you've got some great free training lined up already, no harm in having your paid options available as well.
    You need to keep a fair balance between your free "authority building" content, and your paid levels.
    Otherwise if your readers become too trained to expect it all free it's much harder to get them to cough up later.

    And of course when people subscribe for more (you are setting up your email list before going live, aren't you?) you need an upgrade ready to promote.
    I'd start with a low-priced lead in and then upscale from there. Let your subscribers tell you what would be most useful to them.

    If the quality and value are there people won't mind paying for it.

    Good luck with the site :-)
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8919091].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Istvan Horvath
    And the thing is, I first need to build authority with free/hquality content plus seo and indexation so I can sell anything later
    That is simply not true!
    Or you are royally mixing up two very different things: traffic generation via seo and indexation (whatever that is in your mind...) AND the authority content site.

    Actually, for this kind of site a paid membership (even better: several levels of paid membership) would make more sense than for a lot of other sites.

    From what I understood based on your OP, I'd give away free the "how-to guide" and maybe some podcasts - or fragments from full podcasts. In exchange for their email... in order to build a lead list!

    You can have a LOT of free product, just be careful of what was one of the best basic lessons I've learned in this forum:
    Give them for free the WHAT...
    Sell them the HOW...


    Don't overcomplicate it
    Signature

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8919768].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      The importance of what you are giving away and what you are selling are one in the same. If they like what they are getting for free they will only like what they are getting when they are paying. However, if the 2 are the same.... it will fall flat.

      I really don't know how this will play out with what you are doing exactly, I don't sell language. But this is what I do. I fill my site with theory, and then what I sell is specifics.

      I personally am writing a series on the theory of color in web design. The "FREE" material or blog posts in my case are all about how color affects moods and this and that. Red means anger or love yada yada. In my material I am writing that will be for sale. I write specifically how and where to use these colors.

      An example: 'Orange' the free material I go into how it is neutral positive, its not bright and sunshine yellow, and its not screaming red stop either.

      In my paid material I go into the detail of Paypal and how much money and time they must have spent to come up with the iconic 'Orange' buy it now button. Orange is identified as look here in a positive way as in red might be taken as a negative or forceful. Then I point out that these psychological studies indicate Orange to be the new color of money in our modern online society. blah blah blah

      So when I am selling something and writing publically specifically about the subject, I lay off the details. I do however, leave more than an impression there is more there if you buy my material.

      Hope that Helps!
      Signature
      Success is an ACT not an idea
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8920035].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Ofthingsmanmade
    Greetings!

    I'm also an English teacher. At least I was for the past two years. At one point, I considered doing something similar. If I were you I would create a streamlined experience moving from basic English into more advanced subject area. Offer your basic information for free and move users into a paid experience.

    Other suggestions are also good. Offering your content as subscription services would work as well.

    Also, consider other forms of monetization as well. Advertising, donations ("tips" sounds better), and maybe even pulling some of your longer PDFs and offering them on Amazon Kindle for both revenue and exposure.

    Good luck!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8920059].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author dmarseller
    Sounds Really good!

    First of all, how you are going to get traffic? Only with SEO or Ranking keywords? Social media? forums?


    Meanwhile.... Have you beheld the option to sell translations, articles ....? I'm sure you can earn enough money while you get things moving.

    One idea: Have you thought about do webinars?


    Hope your success

    Cheers!
    Diego.
    Signature


    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8920071].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Davidgarcia
      Thanks A LOT for all your feedback and encouragement, I appreciate every single post you wrote

      A couple of ideas I gathered from what I previously had in mind and what you mentioned here:

      - The flagship for email subscription will be the how-to guide for free. For sure.

      - I must make sure I set a clear line between free and paid material.

      I would appreciate it a lot if you could further explain the concept of 'sell them the how' for language teaching though (I'm sorry I don't seem to grasp the idea properly). Do you mean, for example, giving them the theory on how to use Present tenses in a podcast or post, and then keeping worksheets, more listening examples and the PDF explanation for paid subscription? In pronunciation and phonetics I see it clearly: I could tell them how important phonetics is, show them how this can boost your listening, and then offering some samples but creating a Phonetics Killer guide with recordings, etc. However, I can't see that distinction when it comes to teaching a grammar point (I lack Speaking practise and actual engagement with them face to face as it is an online teaching method).

      - Thanks for pointing out the difference between traffic and content. The thing is I'm a little bit afraid of not getting enough traffic so my original plan was to provide readers with the best content ever, but I didn't realise I would be losing my paid material (and I'm planning to get traffic from social media, yes).

      Sorry if this sounds too contradictory, I'm working as a teacher in an academy and I love my students, I want to provide readers with a lot of good free content and resources so my blog becomes something of a "hub" for English learning, thought leadership, etc and I feel good making something for people out there (especially now with the economic recession and people going crazy with the English learning rush), but at the same time I need to make a living out of this (over time) so I need to monetize it. Maybe the approach you mentioned, giving for free basic English and charging for further levels would be best.

      Thanks a lot again, seriously.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8920259].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author savidge4
        Originally Posted by Davidgarcia View Post

        Thanks A LOT for all your feedback and encouragement, I appreciate every single post you wrote

        A couple of ideas I gathered from what I previously had in mind and what you mentioned here:

        - The flagship for email subscription will be the how-to guide for free. For sure.

        - I must make sure I set a clear line between free and paid material.

        I would appreciate it a lot if you could further explain the concept of 'sell them the how' for language teaching though (I'm sorry I don't seem to grasp the idea properly). Do you mean, for example, giving them the theory on how to use Present tenses in a podcast or post, and then keeping worksheets, more listening examples and the PDF explanation for paid subscription? In pronunciation and phonetics I see it clearly: I could tell them how important phonetics is, show them how this can boost your listening, and then offering some samples but creating a Phonetics Killer guide with recordings, etc. However, I can't see that distinction when it comes to teaching a grammar point (I lack Speaking practise and actual engagement with them face to face as it is an online teaching method).

        - Thanks for pointing out the difference between traffic and content. The thing is I'm a little bit afraid of not getting enough traffic so my original plan was to provide readers with the best content ever, but I didn't realise I would be losing my paid material (and I'm planning to get traffic from social media, yes).

        Sorry if this sounds too contradictory, I'm working as a teacher in an academy and I love my students, I want to provide readers with a lot of good free content and resources so my blog becomes something of a "hub" for English learning, thought leadership, etc and I feel good making something for people out there (especially now with the economic recession and people going crazy with the English learning rush), but at the same time I need to make a living out of this (over time) so I need to monetize it. Maybe the approach you mentioned, giving for free basic English and charging for further levels would be best.

        Thanks a lot again, seriously.
        When ever I have tried to learn another language, I would get a book all of the phonetics are there, but the inflection involved is what is needed to speak semi correctly, and you need to HEAR that. You could literally write out each lesson, and have a video of each. The text version is free and the video lesson is $5 ( just throwing out a number ) or something. You could sell singularly and offer monthly memberships or something like that.

        Looking for this model, there is obviously Rosetta stone at $11 a month, and there is talkenglish.com ( which is free - I do like their reading, speaking, listening formula ) which ironically is a website in English only haha. As we all understand "The Internet" is different around the world. look to see what is offered by doing a web search, and how they monetize it.

        What makes what you have different in a way, is you can target YOUR audience, Spain. I don't know how good your "Spain" Spanish is, but you would be able to in your lessons use both languages. If your "Spain" Spanish is not overly good you could find a partner to make the videos with.

        Aside from the obvious online marketing you could also use some form of printed material to hand out or post around with your site and its services. (That's if you are "In" Spain.)

        Hope that Helps!
        Signature
        Success is an ACT not an idea
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8920601].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Davidgarcia
          Savidge4, I've got to say my Spanish is fluent as I'm a native speaker! Of course the site is written for Spaniards and their particular problems with English (which are several).

          I think I kind of got it sorted out, please let me know if you have feedback for this approach:

          - Free high quality text teaching, with master guides for high volume searches in PDF, autoresponder daily lessons, my e-book for free, and podcasts from time to time or short podcast (so they do have a podcast for each lesson, but not a long and thorough recording).

          - Paid: something like a virtual school (Lynda style) with all my videos, long recordings, teaching tools, guides for specific exams, intensive and specific courses maybe, etc (with its corresponding app which they can download).

          And it'd be a long run strategy as I need to prepare a lot of material, over time. Now I'd have to think about all the paid resources, apart from videos, I should look for learning software/tools, bultin activities, etc. Does anyone know about those? Maybe plug-ins, free software, etc.

          A MILLION THANKS to everyone, thanks for helping me put this together in my mind, I was racking my brains
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8921115].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author AdamPayne
            Hi,

            In Japan,many Japanese will pay for Skype lessons with speakers from The Philippines. Im sure this could be one way to monetize (without you having to teach).

            Weekly podcasts for members?

            Downloadable lessons for members only?

            Just some ideas....

            Adam
            Signature

            Discover the only A-Z of Video Marketing And Save money With Real Reviews Get Proper Product Reviews and for your content, check this out: Video PLR Packs

            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8945716].message }}

Trending Topics