Holding a doctorate in exercise physiology, doing peer reviewed research, and coaching Olympians and pro Ironman athletes somehow wasn’t enough for Dr. Dan Plews. He also is a triathlete himself and is the 2018 Ironman Age Group World Championship Course Winner record holder with a time of 8:24:36.
As a result of his victory, combined with his advanced education in the field, he got tons of questions - especially surrounding his lower carbohydrate diet and how to apply it for long distance triathlons.
So, Dr. Plews decided to monetize his expertise with Endure IQ, adding ‘knowledge creator’ to his list of avocations. Let’s explore his journey.
This interview has been lightly edited for clarity.
Coaching quickly led to courses
Originally, Dr. Plews started out with direct coaching. He noted there was only so much he could do in one-on-one consultations.
In 2019, Endure IQ got its start. “I got so many [questions] that I said I’ll just put this into a course. Originally I thought, ‘Oh, I’ll just build a simple white course that you can put on PowerPoint’. But then, I spoke to one of my friends who said, ‘Well, if you’re going to do it, you may as well do it properly.’”
Now, there are four core courses and other mini-courses. Dr. Plews says, “Our core courses are ten modules long and about ten to fifteen hours of learning. Customers get access for a period of ten to twelve weeks and access to instructors.” The courses are accredited with affiliations including the American College of Sports Medicine, National Strength and Conditioning Association, and USA Triathlon.
Courses take off
EndureIQ did a soft launch of their course, LDT One-on-One. “We said we were going to restrict to just the first fifty people, and it sold out in three minutes,” Dr. Plews recalls.
The courses were a hit! But, the response was overwhelming. Dr. Plews quickly learned his course students were interested in keeping access to the materials and the instructor-led webinars even after finishing the course.
This presented him with the challenge of needing to provide ongoing support. He shares his thought process about this dilemma:
“I didn’t want to have the course open indefinitely because it just gave people the ability to continuously ask questions forever and ever that you’re at the beck and call for, and that’s not how education works. If you’re a university student and you take a course, you get access to the expert, your teachers for that period, but you don’t get the right to ask them questions for the rest of your life.”
Meeting customer demand and generating revenue
So, Dr. Plews discovered a way to meet customer demand while generating recurring revenue from these same course materials. His solution: a $5 per week subscription for access to the material and webinars for those who finish their course.
“I added this subscription pretty much straight away. It works well because we have a lot of returning customers,” he shares.
He keeps it at $5 per week for access to every course a student has ever done, as a loyalty perk for those who take multiple courses. Dan reported having 175 students in that education membership community during our conversation. So, he can bring in a substantial amount of revenue each week simply by opening up access to the course material and being willing to respond to questions.
Subscription revenue opens doors
Now, the subscription brings in revenue, and the revenue in turn facilitates other opportunities for his business.
Dr. Plews says, “The biggest pro to having a subscription-based business is that it allows you to do better business planning. If you can be guaranteed extra revenue, you can start to be a bit more savvy with who you're employing and where you're putting your money because there's a lot less risk. Whereas when you’re one hundred percent dependent on new sales, you never know what each month is going to bring.”
He also noted that having an active membership community has another benefit - it provides a pool of engaged people who he can survey for new courses or other relevant feedback.
But, Dan is realistic about what it takes to maintain a successful membership community. “The cons are that it’s never off,” he says, “There is quite a lot of customer service associated with a subscription model because people always have questions.”
Build your subscription business on Kajabi
At Kajabi, we’re working to build a world where everyone can create a life and business around their knowledge. Like in Dr. Plews’ experience, we’re here to support those who are looking to develop predictable, stable revenue streams so they can focus on their other business goals.
With Kajabi, you can sell your expertise online. Create online courses, establish membership sites, offer coaching programs, host a podcast, and sell other digital products. Plus, you'll get marketing tools like a website, CRM, email marketing, landing page templates, and helpful analytics to help you spread the word about your products and earn more revenue.
Fully explore what Kajabi has to offer and start building your subscription business during your free 14-day trial of Kajabi!
Check out Kajabi’s free downloadable ebook guides on launching and growing a knowledge commerce online business!
Read the 2022 State of the Creator Economy Report to get the latest data on industry trends and growth for knowledge content creators.
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