Broadcast on the Internet for almost nothing, and Take the Advertising Money to the Bank

A lot of people are trying to get into this gig.   You can make a video with an inexpensive camera, or record one on your laptop and throw it up on the internet.  Well, the most popular videos seem to involve cats, people doing really stupid stuff, and women in bikinis.  But we will focus on the simple concept that if you can teach people how to do something, you can gain an audience and then a third party can throw advertising over your video.  You get a cut of the advertising.   Right about now you are saying to yourself, I am not exactly TV star material --people would pay to not see me doing stupid stuff with my cat in a bikini.  Well broadcasting just isn't that complicated anymore:

  • Your ability to teach is important, your credentials are not important.  For instance, if you can teach people a programing skill, nobody cares where or if you graduated from college.  
  • You don't need to write a book.  People need to learn specific skills in short segments.  The most popular seem to be how to videos fix things videos and cooking videos.  Think about what you know: hobbies, crafting, helping others succeed on tests, web programing, building apps for smart phones, math skills, doing repairs, bartending, dog training, fly fishing, leading a guided tour of a museum, and wine tasting, acting, music. cooking, make gift baskets, holiday decorating ...  There are even people who film plane landing and put that up on the internet.
  • Spelling does not count.  If you dread the thought of writing a college term-paper, so what.  You just have to talk.  You don't even need a written script.  In fact you probably will sound better if you are not reading from a script.
  • You don't really need fancy equipment.  Your current camera, cellphone, or computer will do fine.  If people need the info you are providing, they won't care if the video is a bit shaky.  And they will be watching in a 3x5 window, so they will not notice the video's quality.

So we will look at this in three sections (1) getting on the web and scoring and money (2) once people are excited about what you are showing them, you can get them to invest in an e-book which can cost almost nothing to publish, and (3) taking it to the next level -- teaching actual classes of people that learned about you from your internet broadcasting.

Again, people with no experience have made hundreds of thousands of dollars broadcasting on Youtube.  Kahn Academy has been supported by Bill Gates and the like.  Basically they do High School Homework.  --And you did it for Free.  There is a woman in West Virginia who talked about how she did her hair.  And there are a couple of guys who broadcast their video game play, and make a living doing it.  The list goes on and on.  According to this report, a Youtube spokesperson said that there are thousands of people around the world making a six figure income on Youtube. (link)  

You just need to have an idea that people will want to click on.  If your idea turns out to be a dud, that's okay it doesn't cost anything.

What Equipment do you need for Internet Broadcasting?

  • A room to film in, and decent lighting.
  • Video Editing Software -- imovie is free on the Mac. (Basic Instructions)
  • Screen Recording Software and/or a camera
  • tripod to avoid that shaky photo.

Broadcast For Free and take a cut of the Advertising Money

Record from your Computer Screen

There is a lot of free software out there that will help you do this.  But you already have a program that will record what's happening on a portion of your screen.  It's QuickTime by Apple.  Windows people can download it for free.   All you have to do is launch the program, and go to the File Menu.  Then go to New Screen Recording.  It allows you to devind a portion of your computer screen to be recorded.

When it's all done, you can export it into a file that you can put up on youtube.  It's that easy.

Be sure to clean up your desktop--take off the screen saver of your boyfriend and other stuff that can personally identify you.  So how do you get a decent graphic, well what most people do is they make a slideshow with a program like PowerPoint (You probably already have this if you've got MS Word.)  or google doc's free version called Presentation (Free with your google account).  And Youtube also has its own slide show creator and video editor available for free youtube.com/upload

Once you have made your slide presentation, you can edit it in a free program like imovie and add video clips, music, or re-do the voice over.

Lights Cameras Action

In terms of cameras, you don't need much.  You can get by with something like a a $59 Cannon Sure Shot Camera that can record on a chip.  Or you can $400 for a GoPro HERO3 which according to their amazon page can go for well over an hour.  Although that might be overkill since most people will be watching on a 3x5 screen.  It's important to have a tripod because things look shaky if they are hand held.  The gopro has a remote which is handy and you can choose a lower quality video format.   

Getting on the Web and Monetizing your Video

It seems like the service everyone is using is Youtube.  This service basically has the advantage of being the biggest with the most people searching.  See their Partners website.  You make money through Google's ads shown on your you tube videos, and if your videos become really popular they will show a commercial before they start.  You get 55% of the revenue and they pay for all the hardware and bandwidth fn  Since you are basically providing content for their website, they let you put videos up for free.

You have the option of featuring the youtube videos in your own websites.  As long as the ads run, you get paid.  Hosting the videos on your website gives you another avenue to make money.  You can provide more information to the viewers and provide links that pay you a commission for items featured in the video--tools, products ...

The other major video sharing service Vimeo does not seem to have a revenue sharing program.  The video game video based website--people send in videos of their play--Twitch also offers a partner's program, but it's not clear how much you can make.  And you need to have a big following on the site before you can join.

This NPR story explains how people are making big bucks teaching people how to do simple stuff.  Some are making $100,000/year.

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We found this ABC video that explains the process.  From what we understand, they are now more open to new partners than indicated in this interview.
video platform video management video solutions video player
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Although not started as a business, Kahn Acedmy many would argue one of the most successful teaching business.  It is now underwritten by Microsoft and Silicon Valley Firms, but it started out by filling a nitch need--kids who just didn't get the math concepts when they were presented in their classroom.  But the idea is simple, if you can teach people what they need, you will have a huge audience.

UDEMY.COM

Another alternative is https://www.udemy.com  This seems to be based on learning specific skills and academic topics.  They have university level classes, and regular stuff.  Programing, math skills are popular.  But we also noticed a class on magic tricks, "an introduction to hand balancing" and a verity of other topics.  But Students enroll in your on-line class and pay you.  They have all the tools you need to put your course material on line, and the minimum course length is just one hour.  Over half of the course has to be video; but it doesn't have to be a hollywood production.  They don't charge you anything to develop a course with their tools and put it on line.  You get 70% of the revenue students pay to take your course.  https://www.udemy.com/teach  

 

 

Moniterize your knowledge by publishing a book

Think of broadcasting and publishing books co-business to go along with your teaching.  You can strongly suggest to your students that they need to buy your book.  During your class, say things like, “we don’t have time to go through all this.  There is a detailed explanation in my book.”  You can also have limited number hard copies of your book printed and bound at a local printer for sale during your class, and have the e-book available on Amazon and Apple's i-bookstore.  Also you can promote your e-book through your broadcast channel.

Now days, you don’t need to have your literary agent send copies of your proposed book off to New York City publishers.  If you have MS Word and Adobe, you can self publish your book in electronic form.  Traditional publishers are loosing their relevance and control over what gets published as the printing press is becoming irrelevant.  Amazon now sells more electronic books that paper books.  And if it has not happened yet, there will be more e-books sold in this country than paper books.  The other hold publishers had in the industry, shelf space at local book stores,  is also becoming less relevant.  Books are bought on the net where there is unlimited self space.

The easiest way is to do this through the world's biggest book seller Amazon.com.  Books are readable on Amazon’s Kindle, PC’s, Tablets, and even smart phones, but most amazon books are read on Amazon's kindle reader.  https://kdp.amazon.com/self-publishing/signin This where you get started on Amazon.  The beauty of Amazon is that they handle all the details and cut you a check for a bit less than 70% of the sales price.  You don’t have to worry about a credit card processing, pay pal, issues people might have with device compatibility.  The other advantage of Amazon is it’s the biggest book seller in the world.  Say you write a book on widget collecting for profit, someone in anther part of the world might buy your book.  You can cash in on the royalty.  Barns and Noble has the same deal with Pubit.

You also want to be sure that you get your book into Apple's --bookstore.  The market is segmented.  People living in Apple's i-world with their i-macs, i-pads, i-etc... tend to shop from apples platform the i-bookstore.   Kindle owners tend to shop at Amazon.  As with Amazon, Apple takes about a 30% cut.  But they do not have a self-publishing portal, so you have to go through either LuLu or Publish on Kindle, Apple, Barns and Noble, Sony and some independent sites with SmashWord  As with LuLu, they take a small cut of your 70%.    These are the two major ways to get into the i-bookstore.

All of these services require ms word formatted content, and it is important to have a good book cover--even though it will never cover a real book.  Think of it as a marketing pamphlet for hour book--you should have a pretty picture, bullet point all the exciting stuff they can learn from the book, and recommendations.

Remember that you want to cover nitch  topics.  How to _____________  Fill in the blank with something that's not already published by a major publisher.  For instance, we noted a book called how to advertise on craigslist.  It only sold for a couple of bucks, but it's a topic a lot of people may want to find out about.

e-book pricing

If you are promoting your book with classes... you can charge a bit more for the book.  If you are aiming for the mass market, keep the price low.  A lot of these sell for less than a couple of bucks.

Another indirect way to make money form teaching is that people will assume you have a lot of expertise and hire you as a consultant.

Resources:

NPR story on the Growth of E-books.  

Good CNET Article about Self Publishing 

Locations to Teach Classes in Orange County

 Once you have an audience, you might want to teach at local colleges.  Community colleges have extension or community classes.  This allows you to connect with your students and collect a little bit of money.  

Community College Extension Classes

Community colleges help cover the cost of overhead (buildings, administration, …) by offering short one or two day classes that are not for college credit.  These are referred to as extension classes. Since they do not impact on the schools accreditation, you don’t need to have a Masters degree, just be able to demonstrate some expertise in a subject a few people in the community would find interesting.  Your local community college mails out a list of these classes about every six months.  It costs students between $40 and $150 to take a class.  We are not sure what the instructor’s cut is.

Orange Coast College Contact info:

From their website: Opportunities in Community Education!
Orange Coast College’s Community Education program is seeking new, exciting, fun and innovative courses for kids and adults. If you are a subject matter expert and would like to propose a course, please contact our office at 714-432-5993 and ask for a proposal form. Or, send us an email at commed@occ.cccd.edu.

Golden West College

Golden West College in Huntington Beach refers to extension classes as community services.  Contact community_services@gwc.cccd.edu

to inquire about teaching a class or pitch a class idea.

Santa Ana College

This school also refers to these as Community Classes.  Click here for their current catalog www.sac.edu/cms For information about teaching a class:

 

Services Program

1530 W. 17 St., #S-201

Santa Ana, CA 92706

(714) 564-6594 

The Learning Center

There was a Leaning Center in Irvine.  They had a similar concept to the learning center in NYC, but it looks like they have closed.  We don't know if they will re-open.

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