Teacher and tutor for over 10 years, Pete is an expert at helping students raise their ACT/SAT test scores through personalized one on one coaching.
Today we are helping Pete learn how to scale this knowledge and expertise by reaching more students online.
We walk through why it is important to teach consumers online just like you would in person. We’ll also cover how much Pete should be charging online for his test prep content and the strategies to find out what his target audience will be willing to pay.
You will learn
- Ways to Structure Your Online Content
- Importance of having systems
- Use your market’s feedback
- How to narrow down your target audience.
- Strategies to Determine Your Price Point
- Test Your Content Delivery on Free Platforms ie YouTube
Links and resources mentioned in today’s show
Enjoy the podcast; we hope it inspires you to explore what’s possible for your family!
Click here to leave us an iTunes review and subscribe to the show! We may read yours on the air!
Can't Miss Moments
Each week Jocelyn and I share moments that we might have missed if we had not started our online business. We hope these moments inspire you to see the possibilities and freedom online business could provide for your family.
Being able to stay home with our kids on snow days and help them work on their snow packets! Without having to worry about taking any time off of work and/or miss out on being there for our kids to help them work through their assignments.
Thank you for listening!
Thanks again for listening to the show! If you liked it, make sure you share it with your friends and family! Our goal is to help as many families as possible change their lives through online business. Help us by sharing the show!
If you have comments or questions, please be sure to leave them below in the comment section of this post. See y’all next week!
Can’t listen right now? Read the transcript below!
JOCELYN: Hey y’all! On today’s podcast, we help Pete take his test-prep business to the next level.
Welcome to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast, where life always comes before work. We’re your hosts, Shane and Jocelyn Sams. Join us, each week, as we teach you how to flip your lifestyle upside-down, by selling stuff online. Are you ready for something different? All right, let’s get started.
SHANE: What’s going on guys? Welcome back to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast, great to be back with you again this week. Super excited, we’ve got another Flip Your Life community member on today for a consulting call. We are going to go through three questions that they have about their online business and we are going to help them personally take it to the next level. Our guest today is a very active member of the Flip Your Life forums, it is Pete Stajk. Pete, welcome to the show.
PETE: Hey guys, how are you?
SHANE: And is it ‘Stayjeck’ or ‘Stayjack’? I always mispronounce your name.
PETE: Stajk, that’s fine.
SHANE: Stayjack, Stayjeck, whatever; in Kentucky we say ‘Stayjack.’ Pete Stajk is on the show today, he’s got a really interesting business where he helps people with test-prep and we are going to tell you a little bit about that here in a few seconds and we are really excited to have Pete on the show today.
JOCELYN: All right, Pete, so tell us a little bit about you, what you do online and anything else you’d like our listeners know about you.
PETE: Sure, thanks Jocelyn. So, I’ve been basically a teacher and a tutor for nearly 10 years now. I was a high school English teacher for five years until I really wanted to get into business for myself, so I decided to open up my own tutoring business which I have in New Jersey, I’m in Jersey Shore, and I've been working with students one-on-one. It’s funny, I was part of a business networking group and one of the members had mentioned Pat Flynn and that’s how I got in touch with you guys and found Flipped Lifestyle, and I just said, hey this is something I could do, you know, repetitively online. I can make videos of myself and help students raise their scores online and that’s kind of my pursuit right now. So, I am really excited to be here.
SHANE: And what kind of tests do you prep people for? Are these tests like they are taking like in their classroom or is it something else?
PETE: So this is – it’s essentially the SAT and the ACT, so for a lot of people you know, it brings bad memories because you know, just prepping for these things, it’s a really long and difficult test, but essentially it’s just for high school students trying to open doors and get into the colleges of their choice.
SHANE: So, right now you are basically doing a lot of this one-on-one stuff; you are going to the kid, you are doing one-on-one tutoring, just in a very traditional way, are you getting paid like hourly or something for that?
PETE: Yeah, basically right now, I have an office, you know, down the road from me, and I have – and I enjoy it. I love what I do and that is – kind of my passion is education. So, and this is where it has led into the online part of it.
SHANE: And really what we are trying to do here is just scale this where you can reach more kids and make more money and help more people using the online medium to kind of allow more people to use your test prep course materials or systems basically.
SHANE: All right, we are having a little bit of technical difficulties with the call Pete, so I might have to get you to repeat some things as we go along here, but let’s go ahead and jump right into your questions and see if we can get this test prep thing to the next level. So, what’s your first question for us?
PETE: So my first question for you guys is that I have one full ACT test; literally there’s 215 questions, I have 215 video explanations that accompany each question on my site so far, or that I am about to launch; would many texts make more sense? Meaning, should I break them down into smaller bits, maybe like ten questions every two weeks or something like that? It took a long time to make this first full test and that is where I am at right now.
SHANE: So, like basically, the kids come in and they take a practice question and then you have a video that kind of goes over like how they should attack that question; is that what you are saying here?
PETE: Yeah, basically you like go over the –you know, if they can't make ends meet, you know, that is where my video comes into play and you know, I’ve made keynote presentations and it’s really neat. I film myself explaining so they’ll see me, not just my voice, but they’ll actually see you know, a visual of me explaining it and then I’ll go through with an annotated keynote presentation and literally break down step-by-step, each problem. So, it’s pretty interactive for the students.
JOCELYN: What has your feedback been so far from people who have done this test? Is this something that they are doing as a whole? Like the whole 200-something questions or are they doing bits and pieces of it? Like what feedback have you received?
SHANE: How do you actually teach this to real, breathing, human beings in your business?
PETE: Right, I’m basically – I'm still at the launch point, which is kind of – it’s tough to say that because I’ve been working on it so hard but –
SHANE: No, no, no, Pete, what I was saying is, you’ve actually tutored real kids, you’ve actually taken then through ACT prep, how do you teach them? Do you make them sit down and make them do all the questions and go all over everything in one session or do you break it up?
PETE: We’ll start off slowly and basically with one-on-one, I’ll bring students through it step-by-step and then you know, we eventually get up to a point where you know, the homework or part of the tutoring process will be okay, you’ve got 25 minutes to do 20 questions, or somewhere around that and you know, go, and then we go over it, but to start, we really go question by question, bit by bit.
SHANE: That’s exactly how you should do it then. Like, lets imagine I brought you my son, and my son was a junior in high school and I said, ‘I want prep him for the ACT’ and you tell me, okay, it’ll take these many sessions with – and this is the process with each session. However you would teach it to one kid in real life is exactly how it should be structured to teach it to a hundred kids on your membership community.
SHANE: So, if you are teaching it in chunks, they you want to have like module one, and module one will be exactly like an hour with my son that you’re teaching how to do well on the ACT. Whatever you would do that first session with him, that’s module one in your membership area.
JOCELYN: And I’m not super-familiar with this niche, but just based off of my limited experience with these types of tests, it may be even beneficial to break it down by subject matter –
SHANE: Yeah, like English and math –
JOCELYN: Maybe somebody just needs help on the math, like me, because that was always my big trip up on the ACT, maybe somebody just needs help with that. So, you might even structure it that way so that people can get help with their specific areas of need.
SHANE: So, basically the point here is this: like in online business, don’t just say because it’s online, it’s different than the real world. When you are scaling something, it’s always just like you are doing it one-on-one. You are just creating systems that allow you to reach more people and always trust your market. If you have actually taught someone how to do better on the ACT one-on-one in real life, then they have told you how that’s possible. If you say to yourself, I would never sit down a kid and make them take 215 questions in a row, then you should not do that on your website either. It should work like the market wants to consume information, which is that ‘Do these five questions on the first session, we’ll see you next week.’ You see what I’m saying?
JOCELYN: And that being said, just to wrap this question, you do definitely need to verify this with your market. Don’t make a whole other test without asking questions like ‘How do you want to see this information?’
SHANE: Yeah, you could even go back and say like, go look at the kids or the parents or whoever you have worked with, and ask them – or look at the kids that did the best or the most improvement, how did you teach them and how did they respond best? If they responded best to an hour of session, five questions at a time spread over so many days, then that is how you should do it on this as well.
PETE: Okay, thank you.
SHANE: Let me ask you a question here about targeting real quick before we move on to like are you just – is this any kid who is taking the ACT that you are targeting here?
PETE: That’s a good question; you know, there are certain levels of students and I think right now I am being really generic in my approach. It’s just in terms of like somebody who wants to raise their scores or somebody who needs to get – because really, these tests are like riding a bicycle or playing a sport or a musical instrument. The more you do this, the better you get, so it’s really the volume.
SHANE: I was just thinking that maybe – you know, I’ve looked at your website and stuff and we’ve talked about it a lot in our forums, and that word you used ‘generic’ is always how I kind of felt. It was very general, like – because every kid in America is taking these tests, they are going to have to if they are going to go to college. Like in our state, in Kentucky, every high school student is required to take the ACT. So like, there’s so many millions of kids that are taking these tests. Like, I’m not sure exactly what differentiates you here besides just ‘I have practice questions’ you know?
SHANE: And I wonder if you could niche that down a little bit to say like for example, I have a nephew who is getting ready to go to college. He is desperately – he’s taken the ACT twice now and he’s desperately trying to get that score just a little higher to get a scholarship. Jocelyn, when she went, was like one or two points away from a full ride or something. So, like I wonder if we could narrow that down to say, ‘I’ll help your kid get two more points on the ACT’ or something like that.
SHANE: Now, all of a sudden, you’ve niched down to a segment of the population who really has a vested interest because they are like, how can we get those two more points to get that extra room onboard or tuition or whatever.
JOCELYN: And it seems kind of counter-intuitive to think of it that way. It’s just like we tell people all the time, if you are trying to focus your energy on everyone, you are targeting no one. So, you really need to niche down and not try to concentrate on every person in America that takes the ACT or SAT, but instead this little subset of those people.
SHANE: And even more importantly, your targeting is the subset of someone who has a symptom of a problem and they are trying to solve the problem. So, my symptom is, ‘My kid got the 25 but they need a 27.’ It’s very specific.
SHANE: I am looking online for things like, how do I get two more points on the act, how do I raise my kid’s ACT score to get a scholarship? You have a person with an actual pain point, you have a solution, you’ve got the solution to their problem, they need to prep this, they need to practice, they need to do it and then all of a sudden, bam, they get that two points, you are a hero, you got the kid you know, and 1500 bucks worth of semester, you know, or whatever. But I think that would help a lot after you figure out delivery, your targeting, if you could narrow down to that, I think this would really start opening some serious doors for you.
PETE: Okay, thanks.
SHANE: Good stuff.
JOCELYN: All right, so let’s go on to your next question.
PETE: So, my next question is basically, what should be my tutoring price-point to start?
SHANE: What do you charge hourly if you were working one-on-one with my son, if I needed you to prep him over, you know, what would you charge hourly right now, in real life?
PETE: Depending on if you sign up for a package as opposed to maybe one session, but one session would be 80 dollars an hour.
SHANE: 80 bucks an hour or something like that?
SHANE: How many sessions would I be prepping for my kid to do well? How long would it take for me to get through these 215 questions or whatever?
PETE: Well, if it was just one test, it might only take three or four sessions.
SHANE: Okay, I think you need to probably come in – we always say like if you charge hourly, I usually tell people to charge close to that because you are still offering the same service and you are going to have a membership part to this where kids can come on and ask questions to you and things like that. There’s still going to be that taking care of the customer on the back end of just the trainings, or you might have a comment section below each video whatever. So, I’m thinking probably you should start, you know, somewhere around – I would – what do you think Jocelyn, maybe like 75% of hourly rate of something like that?
JOCELYN: Yeah, I mean, you could always package it just like you do your packages that you do in person and again, this is going to be something that your market is going to have to tell you –
SHANE: You are going to have to test.
JOCELYN: So, basically I would just use a price based on your hourly rate. It might not be exactly the same because it is not exactly the same service, but I would choose something similar to that and test it out, see how people react to it if people are buying it, then that’s great. If people aren’t, maybe you change it around a little bit and see if they buy it when you change it.
SHANE: So, if it’s three times 80, that’s 160? Is that right? No, it’s 240. No wait, what is that math? 240. That’s 240 bucks. So, maybe charge –
JOCELYN: You might go like 199.
SHANE: Yeah, 199, something like that. A little bit cheaper, gives you a good starting point and then you can just test it from then on to see how much you can offer it for people. Like, a price is really hard because you are the expert in your niche, you are the one that is going to know more of what people are paying for this, so you really just have to pick something and see if someone will actually give you that amount of money.
JOCELYN: Another thing you can do is you can look at competition offers and just see what other people are offering and you know, you can increase your value or you can increase or decrease your price based on that. You definitely don’t want to come in at the very highest, you don’t want to come in at the very lowest, probably somewhere in the middle.
SHANE: Yeah, I always say that you should start your pricing in second place like say if somebody is charging 500 dollars for these videos to teach you how to do the ACT or whatever and that is the highest person you can find charging for that, well, come in at 400 because then you are still at the high end, but you are beating the person who is elite and selling that for 500. You got a little bit more competitive advantage for your pricing because you are the new kid on the block a little bit.
PETE: Okay, that sounds good.
SHANE: Yeah, pricing – for everybody listening to the podcast, pricing is something you have to just put on – you got to put the stick around and see what happens. Like, no one can ever tell you the exact price that’s perfect. It doesn’t matter if it’s 199 or 197, all that stuff is completely bunk, none of that really matters. All that matters is you put a price on it and you try. The market will 100% tell if your price is right, wrong or indifferent because they either won't buy or they will. So, just try something, whatever that price is and then raise it until people stop buying and then back up to the last price you could possibly charge. That’s a great strategy for getting your pricing right on all your products. All right?
PETE: All right.
JOCELYN: All right, so let’s move on to question number three.
PETE: So, question number three, it deals with the content, actually the delivery of the content; should I use a glass board for my videos or stick with my keynote video format for the bulk of my content?
SHANE: So when you say ‘glass board’ you mean like you put the glass board up, you write on it with dry-erase marker and you can kind of like – it’s like you are teaching on a black board, but it’s in reverse because you are filming it because you are filming it basically?
PETE: Right, you could see through me and I am literally – it looks like I’m writing in thin air, but it’s just on a glass board.
SHANE: I don’t think that really matters; I think that for kids probably that would be better than just a regular, on-the-screen presentation because the kid is going to be more interested in that and as a teacher, you know, that is what I would use in my classroom when I used to teach if I was going to do something like a video for my class. But I don’t think that’s – it all depends on how your market wants to consume the content, not necessarily what’s “right” or what you want to do.
JOCELYN: Yeah, I agree. I mean, you definitely need to take this question out there to your audience, and maybe it’s a matter of putting up some free videos on YouTube; do a few on the glass board –
SHANE: That’s a good idea.
JOCELYN: Do a few on – what is it called?
SHANE: Just like Keynote –
JOCELYN: Yeah, Keynote or PowerPoint or whatever and just test them against each other. See which ones people comment on, which ones people like –
SHANE: That’s a great idea.
JOCELYN: That’s a very simple and inexpensive way to test out pieces of content to see which one going to perform better for you.
SHANE: So, maybe take one of your better students or somebody you know really good and take someone you have trained live, show them the glass board video and show them just the PowerPoint video and say which one do you like better? Do that with a couple of people you have actually tutored and then do what Jocelyn said: take those videos, throw them up on YouTube, wait a couple of weeks and see which ones get the most hits, the most likes, the most comments and just declare a winner and move forward with your decision because this is another one of those things, this will not impact sales. It’s probably not going to impact sales because the information is the same; it might, you know, help with customer feedback, but it’s not really going to impact the overall business strategy.
SHANE: All right?
SHANE: All right, so do you have any more questions? We might have time for one more question here; we’ll give you a bonus question today, if you got anything else going on in your business.
PETE: Yeah, you know what I do? I had one other question kind of pop up, so, the other option I was going to make available, and you guys can, you know, give me your opinion here, I was thinking also adding the option of tutoring with me live, one-on-one online, is that something that I should offer on my website or should I stick with the passive end of this?
JOCELYN: Since you are already doing this in real life, if you are making enough money doing it in real life, I would recommend not trading the time for dollars if you don’t have to. Adding on the one-on-one coaching package is something that you might consider if you are just starting out in business, you don’t have any income coming in, you are not making any passive income right now that might be something you consider doing. It’s not something that I’d typically recommend. There’s a quote out there that says, “Do what you have to do until you can do what you want to do.” If you are in that situation, then I am not opposed to it, but if you don’t have to, I would not recommend it.
SHANE: Yeah, and the question I would ask you Pete is this, because remember, there are no right or wrong actions online, there’s just action. You got to take action and something will happen and then you pivot. But, what do you want? Do you want to do one-on-one calls or do you want to build a passive income business? You probably can't do both. It’s just like trying to sell to everybody; you’re either going to sell to everybody or somebody. It’s everybody or nobody. So, if you spend a lot of energy doing these tutorings, and you get five or six clients, great, you could probably get more money that way, but that is five or six hours that you are not working on your online business to build passive income.
JOCELYN: But what I can see you doing in order to do this and scale it, maybe you could have in your member area, sort of what we do in Flip Your Life, maybe you have a monthly member call where people can bring questions that they encounter on other practice tests and you could work through them with the [Inaudible 0:18:37].
SHANE: Yeah, you could do like – maybe you could somehow chart the questions that the people struggle with the most that month or something and then you get online and do it live just for an extra thing, but I think you want to build this business so you can scale your tutoring business. Well, you are doing one-on-one in real life and it’s taking a lot of time and you are reaching capacity, moving that online doesn’t solve either of those problems. You are still doing them one-on-one and you are reaching your capacity. So, let’s make the online business passive income and the tutoring can stay where it is for right now and then we can go reach more people and do the same thing. Okay?
PETE: All right, thank you so much.
SHANE: Well, Pete, thank you so much for being on the call today, great questions and I’m sure a lot of our audience is going to get a lot great value out of this call.
PETE: All right, I really appreciate it guys.
JOCELYN: Yeah, tell people where they can find you online, what’s your website?
PETE: Sure; so the website is www.satactsuccess.com.
SHANE: All right, thanks again Pete, see you in the forums buddy.
PETE: All right, thanks again.
JOCELYN: Thank you.
SHANE: All right guys, that wraps up another great consulting call, had a great conversation with Pete today about his online business, I think he’s got some low-hanging fruit there that he can go after and get this thing off. He’s already done this hard work, he’s created the product, he knows he’s got something that the market wants, he has a solution to a problem, so all he’s got to do is connect those dots, get it out there for sale and I’m sure his business is going to take off. If you would like to be on one of these consulting calls and be a guest on our podcast, get some help with your online business, we’d love to help you too. These calls are exclusively for our Flip Your Life community members so not only do you get access to all of our great content on online business and our community forums, but you can have a chance to be a guest on the show. If you’d like to join our Flip Your Life community, head on over to flippedlifestyle.com/flipyourlife; you can join monthly or annually, but please keep in mind as you sign up that annual members do get priority scheduling for the Flipped podcast. Once again, that’s flippedlifestyle.com/flipyourlife and we cannot wait to see you in the forums of the Flip Your Life community.
JOCELYN: All right, next we are going to move into the Can't-Miss Moments segment of our show and this is where we talk about something that happened this week that may not have been possible before we started working for ourselves in the online business. This week’s can't-miss moment is working on our children’s snow packets. This has been kind of a blizzard here in the state of Kentucky and our children have missed several days of school and so, because they have to do work when they missed school, and that’s a part of some kind of agreement with the state where they don’t have to make up days missed if they do what’s called the snow packet. So, we had to work on some snow packets and we had a few tears shed over the snow packets, but yesterday –
SHANE: Isaac hates the snow packets, Ana loves the snow packets.
JOCELYN: Yeah, so we sat down yesterday and because we worked for ourselves, because we do online business, we could sit there and work with them and help them figure out what was bothering them about the snow packet and just how to get it done. It was cool jus to be able to sit there and do that and not have to worry about a million other things that were going on because we were working at the job or we weren’t there to just take care of them.
SHANE: It’s pretty cool like – I know that stresses people out like sometimes there are snow days because you know, you still have to – a lot of people still have to go to work even when it snows and we were teachers and we didn’t have to do that, but we have had jobs in the past where you know, snow days, we had to go in. Jocelyn was a marketing coordinator for a manufacturing company, I was coaching football; we had to be there when I was coaching college football so we had to do those things. So a snow day could totally derail everything because you had to figure out where the kids are going to go, what you are going to do, who is going to help them with the snow packet because you are coming home tired and it was just really cool to be able to say ‘Hey, pause, we’re not going to do work this morning’, we are just going to stop and say let’s just get with the kids, let’s just hang out with them, they're here and let’s spend some quality time with them, help them get their work done and it was just a really neat opportunity to do that. Before we go, we like to close every one of our podcasts with a Bible verse. Jocelyn and I draw a lot of inspiration from the Bible and we use it to guide us as we move through life and as we grow our business. Our Bible verse today, comes from Psalm 112:5 and it says, “Good will come to those who are generous and lend freely, who conduct their affairs with justice.” Great words today on how we should be treating other people and how we should be growing our business; keep that in mind as you are getting out there, taking action and doing everything you can to flip your life. We’ll see you next time.