Ask Me Anything - Phil Ebiner, long-time instructor

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Ask Me Anything - Phil Ebiner, long-time instructor

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Hi, 

I'm Phil Ebiner. I'm a long-time Udemy instructor - been here since 2012. And I'm excited to be a part of this community. Please feel free to ask me any questions!

 

Since 2012, I've made over $1.5 million from Udemy. And I don't say that to brag, but to show you what a normal guy like me can do... someone who started like many of you without an audience, experience teaching, experience selling, email list, website... nothing.

 

It has taken a lot of hard work and time to do this, but I believe you can achieve your goals if you have the right mindset and put in the right amount of effort!

 

Screen Shot 2019-02-05 at 10.41.53 AM.png

I love Udemy, and hope to help you out on this amazing platform!

Cheers,

Phil

19 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

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Twins! Congratulations!

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Woow. That is impressive 🙂

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I teach creative skills like photography, photo editing, video editing, motion graphics. 

 

Great question about how long a course should be. I always say that they should be 'as long as it takes to teach the topic.' I wouldn't focus on just simply trying to reach a certain length of course... just focus on teaching a topic in an efficient and easy-to-digest manner. You don't want to drag on and on about a topic.  On the flip side, I've seen longer courses do better on Udemy. So adding additional topics/content, and making the course comprehensive enough to be 5+ hours is generally my rule of thumb.

 

In terms of finishing the course - do it! Just get the course done and launched!

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Wow. That's impressive. I have been procrastinating with my courses. They are written but I've not taken the first stepl to launch. What advice do you have as to making it grow once i launch the first course.

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Hey Phil, thanks for doing this. Big fan of your Online Course Masters podcast.

 

How many Q&A's do you get per day? How long do you spend managing that? How big is your TA team?

 

How many people work with you in course production (if it's more than just you)?

 

Jose

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Hey Phil! Congrats on your success on Udemy. Along with being an instructor, I'm also a student of some of your courses. I wanted to ask about your marketing. I noticed that a decent portion of your earnings come from self promotion (basing this on the screenshot you've posted).

 

What do you do to market your content? Which platforms do you use? Do you do Facebook advertising? I would love to know your strategies. Thank you for doing this AMA!

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That's all becasue of hard working and your consistency 

U Simjee

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I definitely think free courses are a great way to build your brand and student base. Not only should you put that free course on Udemy, but also on YouTube and potentially on your own website so you can use it to build your email list that you will send the paid course to when it's done. 

You'll have to pay attention to the rules on Udemy though, because you can't send free coupons to students in a free course via an announcement. This would have to be done with your own email list or on a website/YouTube channel to your own audience.

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At the end of the day, what ends up making more money is making more great courses. So while I truly believe building your brand (website, YouTube, social media) is super important for the long run, I also think if just starting out, you might want to just focus on creating as many good high quality courses as you can.

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Great question! What I've learned is that those ups and downs are just the normal trends across Udemy for all instructors. November, January, June, August... those are usually peaks. Other peaks will be when I launch a new course. 

 

As for when it's a new month, and it's going slow... I just want to ask what you are doing to improve it? Are you working on a new course? Are you building out a website? Are you growing an email list? Are you growing a YouTube channel? Are you testing out new ways to promote? 

 

What are you doing to grow?

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Thank you for being selfless and sharing with us. What do you have to say about the many sites that promote udemy free or discounted coupons? Is it worth a try? If it is, which sites are recommended?

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Hi,

Do you think using Google Ad is uesful for marketing my courses?

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Hi Phil,

You have done so well for yourself and for that I say congratulations to you.

Please am new on this platform and really don't know how to start up.

Is there a way you can help me?

 

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Hello Phil!

 

I am Pramod from India, a brand new instructor raring to go. Your story is amazing & inspiring.

 

I need your suggestions on - how to reach where you reached or better it. I give a few details about me and my class.

 

 

My class name: Stock sutra

 

What does it teach? Stock trading, currency trading, commodity trading.

 

Total class length - 3.45 Hrs

 

Total videos - 101

 

Design - Powerpoint slides and me talking in the background. The class is engaging with pictures and examples. The class is in such simple words that even a 15-year-old child in any part of the world can master stock trading and benefit from it.

 

Current status - Class is completed. Instructor verification on.

 

 

 

About me: I am from India. I have been trading stocks for the last 15 years. Also, I have many years of work experience in other fields too. I am now 60. This is my 1st class ever anywhere online. I am a passionate teacher and love teaching. I have worked for over a year on this class and invested all my money and loans from friends and family. I would like to return the loans as early as possible with handsome returns. I want to make my 2nd class on - Simple Yoga & Meditation.

 

Could you please give 5 tips to success that I should be looking to act upon.

 

Best wishes.

Pramod

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I see you haven't published a course yet. 

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Hello Phil, how can we talk in person about your offer? 

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Amazing job Phil... I'm really impressed! I hope I can make my first $1.5 🙂

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Hello,My name is Panos Hadjigeorgiou.I am a personal trainer coach,am trying to create my first video on udemy.I want your help....What video editing do you recommend to me.I thinking to make one big video about 30 minutes and then small videos for the explanations of every exercise and the to combine them together.Or is better to write them in a slite before every exercise?

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Hi Phil. Great that you make yourself accessible to everyone. I have decided to take my Udemy career more seriously . I was wondering whether to spend my time updating my 6  courses to make them more professional or maybe my time would be better spent creating new courses. I think there is a niche for graduate level maths and physics courses . 

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Hi Phil,

 

Congratulations on your Udemy success - I'm currently working my way through one of your courses and the quality is fantastic. 

 

I have a question and would greatly appreciate your input (it's slightly different). 

 

I joined Udemy back in 2014 and launched 4 courses within a couple of months. Just as these were taking off (I quickly jumped to $350/mo in revenue) I was offered my dream job, which had long been in the pipeline. I'm ashamed to admit it, but I let my Udemy business go and did very little to keep it going and support my students. 

 

Fast forward to today and those 4 courses are still live, one of which has a rating of 4.7 stars from 17 reviews and has generated thousands of dollars in passive income. That course currently ranks on the 2nd page for 'Amazon FBA'. 

 

I feel ashamed for having let my Udemy business go, but most of all, for letting my students down. Teaching is a real passion and seeing people succeed is both a pleasure and honour - and i've made a committment to myself that I'm going to recitfy this.

 

Out of the four courses, one of them has done well (considering I haven't touched it in 4.5 years), is in an area where I have had some great success and is a topic that genuinely interests me (Amazon FBA). 

 

Do you think I should build on this one course and focus on Amazon FBA type courses (baring in mind how competitive it now is) or would it be better to start a fresh in a less competitive niche?

 

Whatever I do, all of my existing students will have lifetime access to every course I publish for free.

 

Thanks in advance for your input - it's gteatly appreciated. 

 

Kind regards


Adrian Knight

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Hi Phil,

 

Your Intro is Awesome 🙂

 

I have a quick question, Can I use video from Youtube (posted by other people) in my course content as embedded videos with Link to Youtube?

 

Thanks

Vijay

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it's nice thing to  hear because it helps MI also  not to give up and also be hardworking  and patient like the years you have spent on udemy

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Good luck with your course @Prizzy-fashion . Keep up the positive attitude and I am sure you will succeed. 

LL

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Congratulations, this is amazing and inspiring

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Congratulations @PhilEbiner . 

 

Those are impressive results! 

 

Having been a long-time instructor on Udemy, have you noticed any  fluctualtions with the implementation of the new coupon and refferal system? 

 

Regards, 

 

Joyce W. Solomon (Standout Personal Branding Coach)

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Hi Phil,

You have done so well for yourself and for that I say congratulations to you.

Please am new on this platform and really don't know how to start up.

Is there a way you can help me?

 

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Hello, 
I am about to make my first course. It will be a long course covering a deep subject. 
I imagine it growing to be about 15-20 hours of material (maybe more)

I read that the udemy guidelines allow for courses as short as 30mins in length. 

Is it possible for me to release a 30minute long course (or course that is just a few hours) and gradually add more modules to it? 

Is it possible to create "blank" module (or something of that sort) so I can display the modules that are yet to be produced so the audience knows what they can expect to be rolled out in the future? 

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Hello Phil!

 

I am Pramod from India, a brand new instructor raring to go. Your story is amazing & inspiring.

 

I need your suggestions on - how to reach where you reached or better it. I give a few details about me and my class.

 

 

My class name: Stock sutra

 

What does it teach? Stock trading, currency trading, commodity trading.

 

Total class length - 3.45 Hrs

 

Total videos - 101

 

Design - Powerpoint slides and me talking in the background. The class is engaging with pictures and examples. The class is in such simple words that even a 15-year-old child in any part of the world can master stock trading and benefit from it.

 

Current status - Class is completed. Instructor verification on.

 

 

 

About me: I am from India. I have been trading stocks for the last 15 years. Also, I have many years of work experience in other fields too. I am now 60. This is my 1st class ever anywhere online. I am a passionate teacher and love teaching. I have worked for over a year on this class and invested all my money and loans from friends and family. I would like to return the loans as early as possible with handsome returns. I want to make my 2nd class on - Simple Yoga & Meditation.

 

Could you please give 5 tips to success that I should be looking to act upon.

 

Best wishes.

Pramod

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Congrats on your success!

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Hey Phil. Great post. I'm thinking about starting a Udemy course on "learning to play the drum set". Any thoughts off the top of your head??

 

Thanks for your time!

 

Dusty

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Hi dear Phil,

 

I have published my first course and I have some concerns!! Your advice, and sahring your experience means a lot to me and help me to keep my expectations reallistic.

 

I published it around three weeks ago and since that time I'm getting almost 1 student every other day, mostly from affiliate and adpro of Udemy (I did no marketing yet).

 

1- First of all, how do you think about this performance? Is it strong, week, or very normal for begining? How is the growth trend usually? I mean if I don't do any marketing, does this enrollment trend remains? goes up or down? How is it ususally? (Its like 6 days that I have no new student!!)

 

2- I know there are much to do with marketing, but I'm not sure how much I can improve current trend? One of my biggest conerns is I have no clue about " time-versus-#students". I'm spending full-time to make new courses and I'm eating from saving!! So as a questin: within next two months, if I put 2-3 more courses with potentially similar performane and do my best with marketing, can I expect to get around 100 students per month?

 

3- Almost there are no serious competetors around my courses (although they are not very high demanded like programming stuff), that's the reason I descied to give a shot full-time. But now, I'm in doubt that maybe whole this process takes time to return minimum surviving revenue (I don't know maybe 6 month- 1 year). So do you think I should get a full-time job somewhere and follow courses at the side? How was it for you at the very begining? How long did it take for you to get your 100 student/month for example? I want to regulate my expectations based on experience and reality.

 

Thank you all for giving me your opinion and experience.

Bests,

Milad

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Hi Phil

 

 

i have not started yet because I do not understand some stuff yet.

 

could you help in answering some questions 

1. Who set the price please 

2. What percentage is paid out to the instructor 

3 Are the courses outright purchase or subscription based?

 

Thank you

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The instructor sets the price, it can be a number divisible by 5 between $19.99-$199.99. 

Following is the instructor revenue

50% of organic sales

95% of sales caused by instructor promo(the student visited your referral link in last 15 days)

25% of affiliate sales

25% of ad based sales

25% for App store and Google play sales

Most courses are outright purchased by students, a small proportion is offered under "Udemy For Business" which is a subscription service for large businesses. 

 

I have 4 courses on Udemy, In the past three months they've been collectively bringing in about $750. It is possible that only one course will make you this much, but the opposite is also equally possible. 

 

Feel free to ask more questions, I'd love to help. 

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@Naeem-Malik wrote:

The instructor sets the price, it can be a number divisible by 5 between $19.99-$199.99. 

Following is the instructor revenue

50% of organic sales

95% of sales caused by instructor promo(the student visited your referral link in last 15 days)

25% of affiliate sales

25% of ad based sales

25% for App store and Google play sales

Most courses are outright purchased by students, a small proportion is offered under "Udemy For Business" which is a subscription service for large businesses. 

 

I have 4 courses on Udemy, In the past three months they've been collectively bringing in about $750. It is possible that only one course will make you this much, but the opposite is also equally possible. 

 

Feel free to ask more questions, I'd love to help. 


Hi Naeem, I have a question ,750 d for each month or three months brought 750, I am sorry if my question was intrusive, thanks in advance

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Each month ...

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Thanks naeem I wish you more success

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You're welcome. 

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I see you haven't published a course yet. 

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Yes, I am working on it, the course is about motion graphics and video editing. I have a question, please, do you think creating training courses is worth the effort ?

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