Based in Austin, Texas, Laura Fox-Wallis is a creative entrepreneur teaching the niche art of silk painting through her Rooted Expressions Studio. After building up her online teaching skills from her classroom educator experience during the pandemic, she decided to claim a piece of the creator economy pie for herself.
She prepared for her business launch by studying marketing and experiencing online courses first-hand. Then, on January 5, 2022, she joined the Kajabi Idea to Income challenge. Just 10 days later, she made her first sale. Straight to business, right?
Though she’s only been on the platform for about five months as of this publication, we’re bringing you her story so you can see what the early journey looks like for a new knowledge creator.
What inspired you to get into knowledge commerce?
I had been a high school art teacher for the past 16 years. The pandemic forced me to learn online teaching, which then forced me to creative problem solve and think about what my students need to learn in any environment. A cross-country move due to my husband's job allowed me the opportunity to stop teaching and open my own studio. I am an artist, but I am also an educator. I have a passion to share my artistic knowledge so that others can learn the joy of creating. This in combination with my new online teaching skills helped me decide to take the plunge into creating online courses.
What problems do you help your clients solve?
I am a silk painter, a medium that is not as popular as others. My courses introduce this medium (one that is fun and easy to get beautiful results) to people from all over the world. My students are often overwhelmed by the lack of information out there and the long list of supplies for silk painting. I have combined all of this information into different courses covering different silk painting techniques.
What did you do first in Kajabi?
I signed up for the Idea to Income Challenge and worked through the online course Kajabi provided. It was helpful, and I was able to build my first mini course from there.
When did you launch your first digital product?
My first digital mini-course launched on January 15th, 2022, and my second course on March 5th, 2022. I am planning to launch a new course every four to six weeks this year, sharing my artistic knowledge of silk painting and other media.
What did you do in the past to set yourself up for success to make your initial sales so soon after signing up for Kajabi?
I took other online business courses from other artists that covered things like marketing, websites, email lists, product launches, etc. This helped me prepare and market my courses to my audience.
What other factors impacted your success?
Teaching silk painting is a niche in itself. This medium isn’t mainstream per se, so marketing to the right people is important. I belong to several international silk painting guilds which help me connect to interested artists.
What’s been the most successful marketing method for you?
Facebook has been my best promoter so far, posting in online groups has not only helped me sell classes but it has also helped significantly grow my email list.
What milestones or accomplishments have you reached on Kajabi?
Selling my first course was really exciting, but I think being able to reach students on an international level has been the most exciting. I have students from Ireland, Australia, and India. These are all places I would not have been able to teach in-person, or at least without significant expense and travel. I love that I can get people excited about learning silk painting from my own studio and connect with others around the world through creating.
What advice would you give to another knowledge entrepreneur who is in the beginning of their journey?
Know your audience! Who would buy this course and why? That helps you market to the right people. Also, have a plan. Break down the course by modules, then lessons, then your script. Be detailed! It is a lot of work up front but it will help you because all your decisions are already made. There will be less time used during filming and editing, and your copy writes itself.
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