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- Who: Joyce Tsang
- Website: joycetsangcontentmarketing.com
- Course Topic: Marketing
- Interesting Stats: Revenue per mentee is at an average of USD $1,264
Who are you and what course have you created?
I am a content marketer and founder based in Hong Kong.
I’ve created three courses:
i) Inbound Marketing Crash Course: Online, on-demand
ii) Mentorship for Slashers: Video call, 3-month program (1 x 1 hour session/ week)
iii) Upskill Training: Video call, 3-month program (1 x 1.5 hour session/ week)
What market does your online course serve?
i) Target: Entrepreneurs interested in learning about Inbound Marketing
Access easy-to-understand and step-by-step materials in this course on-demand! Improve your content, increase brand awareness, and result in effective marketing for your brand. Start to create engaging pieces of content and justify your marketing efforts by attaining new content understanding, so you can build your own content strategy, social media strategy, and apply digital marketing tactics.
ii) Target: For individuals who want to start a side business or considering the slashing lifestyle
Explore your full potential and learn this lifelong skill. Establish your personal branding, build your community, and discover your ability, simply by learning how to tell your own story. The 3-Month program covers:
- Set up – Learn how to strategically build your online presence as a personal brand with content
- Content execution – Know what content to create and justify your effort
- Refine and improve – Ensure growth and longevity with a framework to easily follow through
- Content marketer mentality – Learn how to assess, analyze, and make decisions for your brand’s content with confidence
iii) Target: For marketers, content creators, copywriters, entrepreneurs, or anyone who wants to learn content marketing skills that they can deploy at their job/ business the next day!
Perhaps you’re a copywriter, a social media manager, or an in-house marketing executive. Or you’re an entrepreneur, unable to afford to hire a full-time employee to take care of your marketing duties yet. Either way, you’re someone who’s been trying to take on clients while being responsible for a brand’s marketing. And you feel stuck.
This is the course for you if you are looking for practical skills that you can learn, develop, and use on the job the next day. In the 3-month training, I will help you:
- Match your existing skill(s) with one content marketing tactic every month;
- Upsell your current services/ gain a better competitive edge in the industry;
- Teach you new practical skills so you can explore your full potential and be inspired every day!
What’s the biggest benefit of taking your course?
i) Course Mission: Effective distance learning for you to learn from home and work from home.
Learn. Grow. Assess.
It is not that easy to create great content, let alone drive new customers with content.
While many companies, small businesses, in particular, are quick to jump to social media channels to market themselves, I am here to tell you to hold your horses.
Online presence is vital to building a successful business nowadays. But the type of content each company should produce to earn such a presence is very different.
You often see “gurus” talking about building user-generated content with hashtags and influencers through influencer marketing, implementing email marketing to grow email lists with subscribers, or blogging to drive traffic from search engines. But have you ever stopped to question how each piece of content drives your business objectives? Or what metric signifies success?
Creating a social media marketing strategy is a starting point. It is not enough as a marketing strategy for sustainable growth. You can produce all the content and use all the marketing tools you want, but you will not get very far without understanding your target audiences beyond their demographics.
The key to success is to implement inbound marketing through creating your content strategy. It is time for you to truly understand what works for your audiences instead of relying on a marketing agency. It is time for you to take a step back from just thinking about executions. Most importantly, it is time for you to invest in effective tactics for marketing in our highly competitive digital landscape.
“Without a comprehensive inbound marketing framework and strategy, you are just wasting your time and your money.”
– Joyce Tsang
ii) Course Mission: Learn to tell your own story without the risk of doing it all by yourself!
The world will improve no matter what, and it will not wait for you. While you might easily spend hundreds of dollars on weekend leisure classes making crafts or baking cake, why wouldn’t you invest in a skill that is proven beneficial for your personal and professional life?
Recruiters are looking for skills, and customers are looking for proof, and neither of them is satisfied with just a CV. No one will know about your talent or abilities unless you learn to showcase them professionally.
iii) Course Mission: Gain new skills, extend your career, and earn a new way out!
I have worked on both the agency and the client side, fulfilling social media, content creation, and other digital marketing duties for brands. What I’ve learned is (which most of you should already know), that you are often left alone and just expected to know what to do. Unless you have a strong, knowledgeable, and friendly mentor who is also the direct head of your department, open to teaching you their expertise – which is very rare.
You’re juggling mundane tasks with no space to learn and asked to justify metrics when all you’ve been doing are executions. No one has bothered or realized that you need strategic training to provide insights and prove yourself highly valuable.
I didn’t have that mentor figure throughout my career. So I had to learn it the hard way – by changing jobs every year and starting fresh in order to acquire new skills. It was tough, but I made it a priority. I know I stood no chance for managerial roles if my CV did not have more skills to show. No one was going to serve me promotions on a silver platter. I am the only one invested in my career.
As a result? My monthly salary jumped around 15% every year. But I wouldn’t advise everyone to do what I did. I only had to do that because I didn’t have a person to teach me. So that’s why I’m here now, hoping to be that person for you.
How did you get into the market?
i) Inbound Marketing Crash Course
This started as an experiment because I have never written an online course before. I wanted to use this project to help me:
- Understand what it takes to create a course (any starting costs, amount of research, effort)
- Become familiar with the tools I can use on my website builder, which is wix.com
- Understand the time that it takes me
- Create a wide range of content that I can adapt for other users across my social media platforms in the future (video, downloadables, infographics)
- How an online course fits into the bigger scope of my content and sales funnel
I decided to focus on Inbound Marketing because that was one of the most searched for keywords related to content marketing (which is my expertise) according to SEO reports and Google insights.
ii) Mentorship for Slashers
This idea was born from discussions I’ve had with my PR representative. We were looking for ways to pitch my name to the local Hong Kong media. Many media who cover business news were more interested in tech and NFTs at the time, so it was hard to get them to pay attention to content marketing. We had to figure out something that was more personal, and we arrived at the idea of slashers. Being a slasher myself, it felt right and I was confident I can offer valuable insights.
We hosted a workshop on this first to test the waters, and attendees showed interest in receiving personal help. Hence, the Mentorship for Slashers program was born. Not to mention, we decided to double down on Slashers because there is an obvious potential to rank with this keyword. Other agencies or service providers were not interested in selling services to this segment as they have less disposable income than entrepreneurs or SMBs.
iii) Upskill Training
The structure of this training was born from one lead inquiry. She wanted to work with me but my services didn’t quite fit with what she was looking for. She is a full-time copywriter looking to learn content marketing skills to build her own agency next year. After I came up with the structure for her, I realize it’s a great foundation for corporate training too. So I’m treating this training as the first step to acquiring individuals, then, moving up and pitching the program to corporations.
As I built the informational web page for this training on my website, I also realize I share many commonalities with this lead. I was also struggling to find someone to train me with skills that allowed me to push my career further in my full-time job. I gravitated toward her inquiry because I want to fill that void for others that were empty for me.
Why did you decide to create an online course in the first place?
I was just starting my business and I listed out all the things I can do. My mission is to educate those with an entrepreneurial mindset about content marketing so they can explore their full potential and leave a mark in this world with content. So it was natural for me to invest in educational materials, and an online course seemed like the first, inevitable step.
Did you have any moments of doubt before you created/launched it?
I didn’t struggle to find course ideas or when I was putting them together. I believe it’s because I clearly know I’m not creating them for the sake of it. Every piece of content I create has a business reason supporting it and is justified by research.
Now, that doesn’t mean I think my courses are perfect. But when I’ve decided to do something, I push through and don’t stop until it is completed.I motivate and build trust in my own courses by taking a lot of other courses online. I refine my courses based on what I find good and steer away from things I thought were bad. - Joyce Tsang Click To Tweet
What’s your online course like?
The Inbound Marketing Crash Course, it’s 4 x web pages and each come with:
- 1) Video Lecture – Easily digest with audio!
- 2) Written Script – Copy and paste materials for reference.
- 3) Graphics – Understand strategic concepts at a glance.
- 4) Tips PDF – Organized and easy to understand.
- 5) Downloadables – Checklists, templates, cheat sheets, and more!
- 6) 30-min Q&A session – Every student is entitled!
As for the Mentorship for Slasher, each mentee has their own Google drive, with lecture slides and worksheets.
The Upskill Training also comes with a Google drive for each trainee, with lecture slides and case study references.
How long did it take you to create your course?
For the Inbound Marketing Crash Course, it took me around 2 weeks. It took me the longest to shoot the videos. The process I took was:
- Confirming the subject of the course
- Coming up with the goal of the course
- Identifying the topics that are needed for an individual to go from not knowing Inbound Marketing to being able to have all-rounded knowledge so they can start and do it on their own
- Deep diving into these topics and identifying the sections I need to include in each topic
- Started writing each topic into lessons
- Started to assemble the information that was on executing the lesson’s topic into a Tips PDF
- Imagining myself as the student and creating a downloadable per lesson that assisted their navigation and understanding of the new learnings
- Created graphics that supplement the writing
- Shot the lesson video based on the text I’ve written
- Uploading them onto the web page and setting out the format and layout
As for the Mentorship for Slashers and Upskill Training program, I really just went back to my own processes of being a Slasher and a Marketer and broke down the stages of work I do myself.
I know it shouldn’t sound as easy as it looks, but I think it’s because I have teaching experience (Part-Time Lecturer at HKU Space), and the lectures I have to create for those courses every week are 3-hours long. Those teaching materials are much denser and have specific requirements to meet. So the training and practice I have there have made online courses/ training programs much easier for me to comprehend and build.
All in all, my way of process for everything is always to start from top to bottom. I always diagnose the situation first, do the research, find enough justification for me to proceed, then strategize and break down the idea into elements, which are then executed. I think this image (though is about marketing), is a great visualization of how I create my courses.
Tell us a little about the process of launching your course and getting your first sale(s).
The Inbound Marketing Crash Course was live on the website, and then I did a series of announcements to CTA about the course:
- Generic announcement post about the new course across my social media channels (Linkedin, Facebook, Instagram)
- The graphics in each lesson were adapted into lesson teasers and posted on my social media channels
- The video in each lesson was trimmed into teasers and posted on my social media channels
- Key points from each lesson were used as social copies, and posted on my social media channels
- I outreached to different websites that listed recommended courses to list my course as well
- Then I sent EDM to my audience list with snippets from each lesson
- I used the course as a follow-up/ nurturing tactic/ trigger to new leads in my follow-up emails with them
As for the Mentorship for Slashers and Upskill Training, I had people interested before I officially launched the course. So apart from deploying similar tactics as above, I also had testimonials from them to leverage on.
Do you have a lead magnet?
I do have a lead magnet, but it’s not specifically for funneling leads into my courses. My ebook is a lead magnet into the world of Joyce Tsang’s Content Marketing overall. After the individual downloads the ebook, it triggers a series of follow-up emails, which actually CTA to a 30-minute diagnosis session. There, I can better understand the needs and suggest what service of mine best suits them. If it is one of the courses, I’d suggest it there.
What’s the traffic strategy that works best for you?
Apart from spreading my website links across social media platforms, I believe the most important thing is to optimize the website itself. I only started the website and the business in November 2020, and I am ranking on the first page for a range of keywords including Joyce Tsang, Content Marketing HK, Content Marketer HK, Content Marketing Slashers, and second page for Marketing Crash Course.
Now, I’m starting to actively build backlinks to my website.
What online course platform are you using?
None of the online course platforms actually. I’ve looked into many of them but I don’t see how appearing there can help me build my owned channel digital presence, which is my priority. I think such consideration will only arise when my online presence is so strong that I become a name these platforms want to feature and include.
What made you decide to use your chosen platform over others?
I use wix.com because I value the ability to update my website in real-time. I am constantly optimizing and improving my website, based on new SEO insights, offerings, or market trends. Wix allows me to move visual things around drastically and update text very easily. They also have strong technical SEO tool support in the backend.
What other tools do you use to run your online course business?
- Nutshell as my CRM system to log my leads and mentee progress
- ContentCal as my CMS to schedule out posts
- Calendly to help leads book their 30-minute diagnosis session
- Google Meets to schedule sessions ahead
- Canva to create my graphics
- Keynote to create downloadables and decks
- Mix captions to add subtitles to my videos
What books or training programs have you found useful on your journey to a successful business owner that others might find valuable too?
My #1 recommendation is Company of One by Paul Jarvis. It’s just everything a solopreneur needs to keep themselves on track and not compare themselves with big/ unicorn startups. It’s not bigger the better. One person can do a lot of amazing work too.
Do you have any big mistakes you’ve made along the way that you’d be willing to share?
Since I’ve been in the content creation industry for 8 years prior to starting the business, I think I made most of my mistakes when I was still full-time. I didn’t question the why behind my content enough, or voiced my authentic self then. So when I started my own business, I made sure I did both and helped others to do the same. It’s rooted in the DNA of Joyce Tsang’s Content Marketing. If you want to know why you’re doing something, and want to express your true self, I’m the content marketer you should speak to.
I guess the biggest mistake I made in the business, which has nothing to do with courses, is how tricky creating a client contract is. People can turn 180 degrees when they become a paying clients. They can completely forget what they signed up for and bail. All that’s left to protect you is your contract.
Please share some idea of revenue.
The revenue per mentee is at an average of USD $1,264. I’m at 4 mentees this month.
Please tell us a little about what the money you’ve earned from your course has done for you.
I don’t view the revenue from courses as an indication of financial success. Rather, it proves that there is value in what I offer. The feeling of having a total stranger trust in you and call you a mentor is very fulfilling.
On the business side of things, the more my courses grow, the less I need to focus on providing client services. I can shift things around and not be stressed when no big retainer clients come in.
In addition to revenue are there any numbers you would like to share?
I guess there are some numbers I can credit to my courses:
- My Inbound Marketing Crash Course credits 2.5% of my website traffic
- My Inbound Marketing Crash Course drives 2.47 pages/ session, which is the most on my website
- Mentorship for Slasher webpage achieved a whooping 7:55 minutes of average session duration on my website
What has creating your course done for you personally?
The courses have done so much for me in terms of personal and qualitative achievement.
- Differentiates me from local competitors immediately – not just as a service provider, but as a mentor/ industry thought leader/ inspiring individual
- Showcases my ability to educate others – which was a reason why HKU Space hired me as a part-time lecturer
- Builds my portfolio – which was influential to Marketing 2.0 Conference awarding me with the Outstanding Leadership Award in March 2022, Dubai
- Another way to connect with others – is I am seen as more than just a content marketer. People find that inspiring when I attend networking events and are more open to inviting me as guest speakers at their events
Do you have a story of a transformation from any of your clients?
My first mentee is a hairstylist who is planning for her retirement. I never expected to attract people from her demographics. Looking to promote an online program as an affiliate to earn some extra income during her golden years, she has established her branding and content pillars with me in just 4 lessons.
I was so happy when I saw the assets she gathered in lesson 3 after we went through and finalized her brand key message and content pillars in lessons 1 and 2. They are so authentic, unique, and systematic. Though she entered the program without knowing much about marketing, I have distilled complex ideas into simple frameworks so she can plug and play.
What advice do you have for people just starting out?Do your research, become a student first, and don’t rush it. - Joyce Tsang Click To Tweet
Creating a course is not about boosting your abilities or your credentials. It’s about helping others and providing unique value. It should be predominantly about achieving a sense of accomplishment in assisting others better reach their goals – not about earning money. There are so many courses out there and I think the only way to succeed is to know the pain points of your target audience and answer them specifically.Give people things they understand and can use immediately. - Joyce Tsang Click To Tweet
If what you’re offering can be found online in free resources, why do you bother? Think like a student and be critical about what you want to offer.