As we continue to look at how your particular skills can earn you money, we also remind you to keep thinking in terms of larger numbers. Your mindset is more important than you realize.
Did you miss the first post “How to Earn $1 Million?”
Earlier this week we discussed the most important attribute in earning your first $1 million dollars: changing your mindset.
Instead of thinking about the immediate goal of having to earn $10, $100 or even $1000, you need to shift your focus and start asking yourself how you can earn $100,000 or even $1 million.
We also covered a homework assignment that had you identify and categorize your skills.
If you have done this, you are ready to continue with this week’s lesson.
Identify the Skill(s) You Want to Focus on
The single hardest part of the entire process is deciding which skills to focus on. By now, I expect that you have a list of your various skills and abilities and you need to niche down to find the one or two things that you can really grind on and work with.
How? It’s simple.
If you did the homework assignment, you should have your categorized list in front of you. This is where it all begins.
There are a few steps to take that will help you know where your bread and butter are. The rest of this blog will cover those steps.
Step 1: Is Your Skill Viable
I will assume you have some idea where you want to go from here, but I beg you to take these next steps seriously.
You may be a master woodworker (as in last week’s example), but it could turn out that your penchant for baking cookies is where you will find the most income.
The first step is to do some research and find out which of your skills are the most viable. It is time to go to the internet and do some snooping around.
For this step, I will use the skill of drawing as an example. You, on the other hand, will use each of your skills on your list, in turn, as you follow along.
We need to find out which of your skills has the most reach. You may think that having a unique ability is the most lucrative, but you would be wrong.
If, for example, you are a one in a million and you can carve life-like statues out of apple cores, that’s awesome.
However, it will be difficult to find 2,000 to 5,000 people willing to pay you $300+ to learn how.
You want to find out which of your skills are being purchased to learn already, and there are some quick and dirty resources to do just that.
First, head to Udemy and do a search for your skill. I put in “drawing” in the search box. We aren’t signing up for courses here. Instead, we want to look at the courses that are already available.
What you will focus on is the number of total courses (in my example there are 3,170 drawing related courses).
Then, you want to look at the search results list and focus on the reviews, number of students and the prices. See the image below for a guide.
As you can see, drawing is a popular topic. Each course has well over 2,000 students that left reviews.
You can also click on each course and see how many students are in the classes, but the review numbers should give us enough information for our purposes.
Drawing is popular and people are already spending money to learn how to draw.
Repeat this search for each of the skills you have listed. Be specific as you can, as niche-down skills are easier to use and target later.
Pencil Drawing, for example, or Drawing With Water Colors, are more focused than just “Drawing.”
Write down the average number of courses available for each of your skills as well as the average number of students per course. Then, it’s time to move to step 2.
Step 2: Narrow Your Selection
This may be more difficult than it appears. You need to look over your skill list and find where you want to focus the most.
Picking the skills that are already the most viable from step 1 is a good start but you have a few things to think about first.
Just because one of your skills has a shit ton more courses or active students than the rest, doesn’t mean it will be the best choice for you. You have to think about the big picture here, think about the future.
Our end goal will be to piece together a package that we can sell.
If you can’t see yourself being devoted enough to write about, explore, research and experiment with this skill every day, for several hours a day, skip it.
Likewise, if you see a skill that you absolutely love to talk about, are willing to take from a simple hobby or activity and really bear down with it without growing bored down the road, you may be on to something.
I had you categorize your skills as well. The more skills you have that are viable as well as similar, the larger your package and end products can be. This means you can charge more and will have to sell less of to get to our magic number.
For this step, I want you to pick three or four of your skills that meet the following criteria:
- Has a large number of Udemy courses, as well as a large number of students per course. 20,000 or more is perfect, though we can work with lower numbers like 2,000 or 5,000.
- Is a skill you are excited to work with for the next 9 to 18 months (or more). Remember, this is a daily, high-intensity focus that will take a lot of determination and dedication. If you can’t bake several batches of cookies every day, maybe you shouldn’t focus on baking.
- Is a skill that has two to five other skills in the same category that you are also excited about.
- You must be able to instantly come up with 25 or more ideas about this skill. For the drawing example, we could have: basic drawing, shading, lines, stencils, types of pencils, grip, paper weight, cross-hatch shading, dot shading, composite vs. charcoal, and on and on…
Now that you have two to five skills that meet this criterion, it is time to move to step 3.
Step 3: Do People Want to Learn These Skills?
The goal of this step is to identify which of our skills are actively being learned. The Udemy step is a great way to identify if the skills are viable, but we want to have a large audience that is eager and willing to learn these skills.
Groups are a great captive audience and if you are going to sell, you need to hang out where your customers are. Now that you have narrowed your list down, it is time to find out which ones have the largest active audience.
The easiest way to to do a Facebook Group search.
Head to Facebook, click on the search box and type in your skill, then show the group results. You will get something like the following picture:
When you do your search you want to see how many groups there are.
However, the important thing to note is the number of members as well as the number of posts per day. The larger the numbers the better.
In the above example, there are a ton of groups for drawing. Some groups have over 100,000 members and with the “20+ posts per day,” they are also highly active.
This is where our customers are going to be. If your skills have high numbers like these, you are on the right path.
Once you have run these searches (you can also do the same thing on LinkedIn Groups as well!), you will have a better idea of which skills are the most viable. It is time to move to step four.
Step 4: Can You Do It? Your Skills Say Yes!
The final step here is to seriously sit down and think about the skills you have narrowed down.
Is this something you can do, daily, for a couple of years? There will be days when you won’t want to do anything. There will be days when it all seems pointless.
You will have to fight through these days and end up with a product people want, but also one you are extremely proud of.
Regardless of what people may try to tell (or sell) you, there isn’t a magic formula for making a million dollars.
It takes hard work and a lot of it. So run this through your head as you sit there and stare at your final list:
“If you work four hours per day, seven days a week for two years and at the end will get a check for $1 million, would you do it?“
Of course, the lure of a million bucks is highly encouraging, but you have to be brutally honest with yourself here.
Continue to go over your list, and lower your monetary gain each time. Would you work that hard for $100,000? for $50,000? Would you do two solid years worth of work on this if in the end it only helped one person?
The lower you can go and still remain excited about, the better off you are. Burn out is going to happen. Frustration is going to happen.
However, if the ends justify the means, you will succeed. It’s work. A lot of work and a lot of hard work. But you can retire in two years if you do the work now.
Find that skill set that excites you, is viable, is easy to produce daily and has a lot of eager people willing to learn from you.
Once you do that, you have the skill to focus on and start creating your package.