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- Who: RJ Holder
- Website: urbntrader.com
- Course Topic: Stock Trading
- Interesting Stats: 3,000 Facebook group members
Who are you and what course have you created?
I am the founder and creator of URBN Trader – an online education platform that teaches people how to invest and trade stocks.
What market does your online course serve?
We are in the financial education and business education market. Our goal is to educate and empower our members to invest and start online businesses. We target minority communities but we work with everyone.
What’s the biggest benefit of taking your course?
Members are provided with high-quality content, mentorship, and community support at a reasonable price. Plus, I am available each week “live” in our Facebook group to answer questions and provide help.
How did you get into the market?
I got serious about investing when I was finishing my master’s in Business Leadership and Management. At that time, I invested $10,000 into the market and have been investing long-term since.
I decided to start URBN Trader right after moving to Atlanta, GA, and teaching 7th-grade math. This was intended to be a short-term career change as I was looking for my next business venture.
I was so frustrated and annoyed with the curriculum that I started talking about investing and business topics every day in the first 5 minutes of class. I felt that the math we were teaching was never going to be used in real life – so I decided to incorporate the basics of budgeting, investing, and starting a business to motivate the students.
The kids really enjoyed the content so I decided to put together a full course on investing and trading.
Why did you decide to create an online course in the first place?
I have taken several online courses myself in the field of investing and trading. I always found the courses to be outdated, filled with jargon, expensive, and taught poorly overall.
I’m a very good teacher if I may so say. As a former teacher, I was already using various technologies and software to lecture, grade, and keep track of student progress. I combined my teaching experience with the latest business tech and started URBN Trader to reach minority communities through a language they could understand. I knew I would be someone that many folks would relate to.
Did you have any moments of doubt before you created/launched it?
I never had any moments of doubt because I wasn’t driven by money. I was trying to help people get access to good information. It was more of a hobby than a business at first.
As the business started growing, I started developing concerns about maintaining the business and growing it. Especially, with the rise of competitors.
If so what made you turn it around and do it anyway?
I didn’t let any concerns bother me because I strongly believed I have a good product and teaching style. I knew that if people gave my course a chance they would like it. Plus, I have 5 years of teaching experience including the college level so I’m familiar with teaching adults.
Most investment coaches don’t have the professional teaching experience that I have and it shows in their courses. So I knew this would be an advantage for me.
What’s your online course like?
Recently, I have added some incredible partners to my business so the course has expanded to new topic areas. We have pre-recorded videos on long-term investing, swing trading stocks, and trading options. Plus, we have a video course on starting a successful online business from scratch.
For most of the videos, I am talking off of a PowerPoint. In other videos, I am demonstrating things on my computer.
How long did it take you to create your course?
It took me a week to write, record, edit, and upload all of my videos to Teachable. I spent roughly 3 hours a day during the week (I was working on this when I got home from teaching). And on the weekends I spent about 8 hours on Saturday and Sunday.
Because I was so used to creating lesson plans for my kids, I was able to put my course together relatively faster than most.
Tell us a little about the process of launching your course and getting your first sale(s).
After creating my course and website, I started joining Facebook groups that were related to investing and trading. I would record YouTube videos and then share them in the groups. It didn’t take long to get noticed and for people to visit my site.
I soon started my own Facebook Group that you can find here.
People from other groups started joining mine. Next, I started going “live” in my groups to introduce myself, my experience and credentials, and how investing has changed my life.
Do you have a lead magnet?I’ve tried lead magnets in the past but I find that what works best for me is a “free trial”. I let people into my membership portal so they can see what it all looks like and they can watch a small portion of the videos for free. -… Click To Tweet
Again, I strongly believe that if people see the quality of the videos and everything we offer + my teaching style that they will enjoy the course. Our results indicate that is happening is we have a high conversion rate.
What’s the traffic strategy that works best for you?
Although we have used Google ads in the past, the majority of our sales come from organic traffic. I mostly use Facebook and Youtube. The best way to drive traffic to my website is to go “live” or make YouTube videos so people can see and hear what I have to say.
I didn’t have a marketing / paid advertising budget so I had to use free platforms to drive traffic.
What online course platform are you using?
I started with Teachable but now I use Kartra.
Do you like it?
I like Kartra much better. It replaces many other platforms. All of the features I need are in one platform.
Are there any features you wish it had?
I think they could improve some of their billing and subscription management. It can be tedious to find a customer’s subscription to pause, edit, or cancel.
What made you decide to use your chosen platform over others?
I decided to use Kartra because it worked similar to Clickfunnels but has many more features. The simplicity was key for me.
What other tools do you use to run your online course business?
The platforms and software I use often change. But I mostly use Kartra, Slack, Hugo, Loom, Wondershare Filmora, and Todoist.
What books or training programs have you found useful on your journey to a successful business owner that others might find valuable too?
I haven’t read any books or taken any courses on growing a course or starting a course business. I was lucky that my next-door neighbor is a successful online business owner and the co-chair of membership for Entrepreneurs Organization. So, I learned a lot from him.
Do you have any big mistakes you’ve made along the way that you’d be willing to share?
The biggest mistake is being unorganized in the beginning. I didn’t expect sales to come as quickly as they did and I wasn’t organizing a lot of my data to find trends and opportunities.
Please share some idea of revenue.URBN Trader has made $100,000 in less than 18 months. My best month was $10,000 and on average I made $7,000 a month. - RJ Holder Click To Tweet
However, I have been in negotiations with new partners over the last 7 months so the majority of the business has been suspended during that time.
Please tell us a little about what the money you’ve earned from your course has done for you.
I stopped teaching 7th-grade math because of the success of URBN Trader and the pandemic. Luckily, I was already working on URBN Trader when the pandemic hit and closed the schools. Then the course really took off and I started doing that full-time.
I had just bought my house and had my dream wedding right before I started URBN Trader so I haven’t used my profits for anything like that.The biggest win for me is the confidence I now have. Owning an online business that’s automated and generates revenue is the biggest confidence booster in my adult life - even more than my graduate degrees. - RJ Holder Click To Tweet
To create something from scratch and make more money from it is an incredible feeling.
In addition to revenue are there any numbers you would like to share?
Here are some quick facts about URBN Trader:
- I have roughly 3,000 Facebook group members, 1,000 in the first 5 months. I did this by going “live” in other groups and sharing my YouTube videos. People then came over to my group.
- URBN Trader made $10,000 in September 2020 without using any paid advertising
- Average customer spend = $203.50.
- Subscriber lifetime value = $5,820, which is something I’m very proud of
- Dispute activity = less than 1%
What has creating your course done for you personally?
It’s given me tremendous confidence, allowed me to stop working, and presented opportunities to work with new partners. I get to expand my services and hopefully make more money.
It’s allowed me to work from anywhere. My wife is a lawyer who works from home also. So we have strengthened our relationship by traveling to different cities for a week to work from there. Eating new foods, seeing new things, and getting out of the everyday routine here at home.
I love making money from an online business because of the flexibility it gives you.
Do you have a story of a transformation from any of your clients?
I’ve worked with hundreds of members by now and so many of them say the same things: the course was so easy to follow, I teach really well, and I learned so much.
Take Natasha for example, she is one of many who developed the confidence to learn the markets and start trading. And she had success early on.
What advice do you have for people just starting out?
I encourage everyone to sell their knowledge. It’s a great first business to get into because the margins are incredible and the start-up costs are very low. I would tell people to “just get started”. You will continue to edit and change things on the way. You’ll learn as you go. Start now.