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- Who: Lauren da Silva
- Website: laurendasilva.org
- Course Topic: Entrepreneurship
- Interesting Stats: Earned $4K after first launch week
Who are you and what course have you created?
I am a life coach for women who are in the early stages or “fourth trimester” of their entrepreneurship journey.
The course I created is called “The Upward Spiral”, and it’s basically a fourth-trimester survival guide for female entrepreneurs who are experiencing “failure to launch” because they’re feeling overwhelmed, unsure, and paralyzed by fear as they begin their entrepreneurship adventures.
What market does your online course serve?
Heart-Centered female entrepreneurs in the early stages or “fourth trimester” of first-time entrepreneurship adventures. Most of my clients are also second-generation trauma survivors and mothers. In addition to making their mark on the world in terms of entrepreneurship ventures, are also navigating their own healing, personal development, and re-learning or re-parenting so that they can create a new family legacy for their children.
What’s the biggest benefit of taking your course?
It equips my clients with the tools they need to navigate big emotions and unhelpful emotional & relationship patterns that are stalling or derailing their entrepreneurship success. It also empowers them to use these same tools in every season of entrepreneurship growth, no matter how far from their comfort zone their adventure takes them.
How did you get into the market?
As a social worker with a decade of experience in pastoral ministry, and a personal obsession with personal development, particularly in the area of boundaries and internal locus of control, I started out as a bit of a generalist helping women struggling to understand and establish healthy boundaries. I even wrote a book on the subject!
After the book was released, I noticed that the women gravitating towards me, my work, and my coaching practice were all entrepreneurs feeling stuck at the start line of their own ventures and were seeking help overcoming overwhelming emotions like fear, were very anxious about how their relationships would be affected by their success, and were burning themselves out trying to “make it”.
I basically just saw a need for tools and the space to work through these kinds of experiences and created the course that I knew would empower help them to move forward.
Why did you decide to create an online course in the first place?
As I mentioned earlier, I started my coaching practice with a book, a small pre-recorded 5-day workshop (so an online course), and 1:1 coaching.
I soon realized that this approach would cap my ability to grow/scale and the more creative part of me was feeling bored and stifled (when you’re booked back-to-back all day, days get monotonous). 1:1 coaching, while personalized is also restrictive in that there is only so much material you can cover in a session or over a period of time, and because my approach is so intuitive, the ground I would cover with clients was restricted to wherever they were at in that moment in time. 1:1 coaching is also not as accessible to as many people due to the level of investment required.
A comprehensive online course experience was a strategic move because it would:
- Cover all the material my clients would need to not only succeed in the challenges they are experiencing right now but in the future as well.
- Scratch the itch I had to create something
- Be more accessible to them because they could consume the content when it is convenient for them and is more cost-effective.
- Free me up from a time perspective
- Scale and grow my business sustainably, and exponentially.
Did you have any moments of doubt before you created/launched it?
Yes! Oh gosh. In fact, I experienced my own “fourth-trimester” jitters and overwhelm in the three or so days following me making the decision to create it. Self-doubt, fear, anxiety, analysis-paralysis- you name it, I experienced everything my clients do 🙂
I consider it a blessing because I got to experience what the incredible women who take my course are experiencing and I believe having those moments so close to the development of the program made it even better than it would have been.Also, I believe that some fear is really good for us, it indicates a departure from our comfort zone and into a growth zone and so as uncomfortable as the physical experience was, I tried to lean into It so that I could move through… Click To Tweet
I guess what I am trying to say is that it’s NORMAL…
If so what made you turn it around and do it anyway?
I knew it was what people needed. In fact, because that experience is exactly what the course is for, experiencing it for myself only convinced me that I was on the right track.Having the tools you need to correctly identify what you’re experiencing, and move through it can mean the difference between being stuck in paralysis for days, or months, if not years. - Lauren da Silva Click To Tweet
In the beta-testing phase, some of my clients had been feeling stuck in emotional quicksand for over a year. It is debilitating. I kept moving because I knew it would help women, their families, and ultimately, their clients.
What’s your online course like?
My course consists mostly of live video (10-15mins per video) with some slides sprinkled in here and there. Where it is useful I also include downloadable worksheets that people can use to further process the content. I also have an online discussion forum and a more intimate community where clients can interact with and support one another in real-time. Monthly group coaching (or reunion) sessions are also included in my program so that my clients have my ongoing support.
How long did it take you to create your course?
It took me about 4 hours to formulate the lesson plan and I spent 1-2 mornings a week for 10 weeks during the beta phase of my course to do content/lesson prep and film the lessons. I also meet with the beta students in weekly group coaching sessions during that time.
I do it this way so that even though I have my lesson and content plan, I can be responsive to the needs of my ideal client/students and their feedback does shape the flavor of the overall experience.
My virtual assistant helps me load the videos into the class portal once they’re filmed.
Tell us a little about the process of launching your course and getting your first sale(s).
Because my course was created in response to a need and demand I noticed, and because I have an existing client base, as well as a community of warm to hot leads that I have been nurturing continuously, my launch was fairly easy.
I announced the program in my lead group via a live video and shared why I created it, who it was for.
I had 10 or so women raise their hands immediately.
From there I continued to show up in service and build relationships inside my lead group, sharing testimonials of past clients, beta testers and previewing content from the course, and hosting free mini-trainings in my lead group like, “how to survive the rollercoaster of your fourth trimester”.
I also made sure I continued to invite people to my lead group, and participate in a number of local networking opportunities in my community.
I am learning that it takes consistency of focused effort and clear communication to be effective 🙂
Do you have a lead magnet?
Yes, I have a quiz (which helps people identify which of the three categories of fourth-trimester symptoms are most derailing to their business success), which then invites them to a free mini-training and my lead group.
I believe that lead magnets are great opportunities to earn trust and get people on your list, but my free Facebook group has probably been most effective in terms of nurturing trust and building a community. It probably also plays more to my strengths.
What’s the traffic strategy that works best for you?
I use a content & organic marketing strategy. I have never used a paid ad. So far, I believe it is working out very well, although I think I do have room for improvement in this area, and mastering organic traffic & lead generation is the next phase of my own professional development and what I am investing into next.
What online course platform are you using?
I use a platform called AttractWell. I do like it very much. It is very cost-effective and includes a CRM, blog, easy to customize, and very flexible website pages, a blog, lead magnets, Landing pages, and of course, the online course platform.
Do you like it?
I do. What matters most to me is, first of all, ease of use and then cost-effectiveness.
Are there any features you wish it had?
I wish It had a quiz integration, and that I could embed videos directly from Loom 🙂
What made you decide to use your chosen platform over others?
It came highly recommended to me and it is very easy to use, change and it’s very cost-effective. I love that it’s fully and easily customizable too. Drag and drop is where it’s at 🙂
What other tools do you use to run your online course business?
Here are the tools I use:
- Loom: to record my videos
- Vimeo: so that I can imbed them into my course platform.
- I also have a small webcam and microphone that was a small investment but has allowed me to create great quality content.
- I use re-stream so that I can nurture my leads, audience, and community regularly.
- Stripe & PayPal: To take payments
- involve.me for my lead magnet quiz
- Facebook: for my lead group/free community.
- Acuity: to schedule clarity calls, testimonial recordings, and 1:1’s when I do them 🙂
- Cinchshare: to help manage my social media scheduling.
What books or training programs have you found useful on your journey to a successful business owner that others might find valuable too?
The Home-Based Revolution by Martha Krejci is what and who got me started 🙂
She is a business strategist, SEO genius, and the queen of organic marketing. I can’t recommend her work, or her program enough.
I also do love to read and the following are also in my top 4 🙂
- Napoleon Hill (Think & Grow Rich, How to Own Your Own Mind)
- As a Man Thinketh by James Allen
- Start with Why & The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek
- The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks
Do you have any big mistakes you’ve made along the way that you’d be willing to share?
My biggest mistake was that I was so terrified of making mistakes that I didn’t take enough risks or do enough experimentation. The second was that I was not consistent enough in social media posting about what I do out of fear that I would be “overloading” my audience.
The third was that I also created too many offerings initially – this divided my audience’s attention and confused them about what I did and what was right for them.
Please share some idea of revenue.
At the end of my first launch week, I had my first $4k Friday 🙂
My favorite thing about my system is waking up to three-figure nights – making a thousand dollars while I was sleeping 🙂
Please tell us a little about what the money you’ve earned from your course has done for you.
My team has grown to include me and a VA from my home country of South Africa and I love that I am able to bless her in US currency from here.
My income has paid off debt and is about to pay for a home renovation – we’re adding a master suite and upstairs to our small 3bed, 1 bathroom Texas ranch-style home which is getting a little too small for our 5 person family 🙂
In addition to revenue are there any numbers you would like to share?
My growth is slow and steady. In the past year, I have grown an engaged and close-knit lead group to 500 people, I have grown my personal following to nearly 2000. My personal definition of success isn’t just having large followers – I am growing an engaged & genuine online community.
What has creating your course done for you personally?
Oh gosh – the confidence 🙂 but honestly, it’s helped me get my groove back. I started this journey off the back end of a really difficult immigration experience, a battle with anxiety and depression, and really, having given up on basically all of my dreams and feeling like a total failure.
Now, I feel like I am living with purpose, that my life is just overflowing with possibilities and opportunities and I am privileged to be in a position where I can share them with others.
Do you have a story of a transformation from any of your clients?
Jessica’s story is very typical of a lot of my clients. I absolutely love taking them from a place where they don’t believe that they can actually live their dreams, to believing whole-heartedly in themselves.
Most of my clients are already REAL survivors of so much life difficulty. Watching them translate or use their existing courage and resilience into entrepreneurship inspires me every single day.
Here is Jessica’s story in her own words:
“… As Lauren says, I feel like I am in an UPWARD spiral! I’m living and working in my zone of genius. I see life in a new way. I needed this class for more reasons than I count and for more than entrepreneurial reasons! I’m so thankful for Lauren’s courses and leadership in heart-centered wellness.”
What advice do you have for people just starting out?
That fear, failure, and imposter syndrome are normal and probably a sign that you’re on the right track. That when it comes to mentors – the more the merrier 🙂 and that you’ll need a crew of people who are on a similar journey to you, who can cheer you on and remind you why you’re doing what you’re doing when you have days that you want to give up 🙂