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How Dan Wahlin Makes $3,000/Month on Udemy Through Social Media Authenticity

Screen Shot 2015-05-15 at 3.45.45 PMDan Wahlin, one of the most successful instructors on Udemy, is also the founder of The WahlinGroup.

He’s made a name for himself as a tech expert by offering training services on everything from JavaScript and jQuery, to HTML5, SPAs, ASP.NET, and more.

In addition, he has also created a highly successful Udemy course titled AngularJS JumpStart with Dan Wahlin.

Even though this course is priced at just $99, Dan has averaged $3,000 a month, and over $30,000 in less than one year.


How did he manage to do this? Check out his tips below to find out how you can implement the same types of strategies for success.

Harness the Power of Social Media

Dan knows that promotion is key to success, regardless of what industry you work in or what products and services you offer.

“You can have the best product in the world with the highest quality, but it won’t matter if no one knows about it. That’s one of the first things I learned when I started my own company many years ago. It’s all about getting the word out there about your product and reaching as many people as possible.”

But Dan feels that social media, combined with high quality content and products, have been a driving force in the success of his Udemy course:

“Social media is extremely key, in my opinion. It helps get the word out about your product and, if you plan it properly and remain persistent, people will ultimately end up helping you spread the word. It all goes back to quality. If you consistently release high quality material, word spreads and people want you to release more and more content.”

How to Choose the Right Social Media Channel

With so many social media sites out there, it can be tempting to put your brand on every one of them. But you can attain more success by focusing only on the social networks where your target audience spends most of its time.

“I ended up jumping into Twitter mainly because a lot of the people in my field (software developers) are on there. I’d recommend that people try out a few of the social networks and see how engaged they feel with people they’re trying to connect with. In the case of Twitter, it takes some work and persistence, but I’ve found that it’s a great way to connect with people and let them know about courses, blog posts, and more.”

Engage Your Social Media Audience With Free, High Quality Content

It isn’t enough to simply post about your Udemy course on social media; you also have to actively engage with your audience by sharing free, high quality content they’ll find valuable.

“It’s extremely important to be fully engaged in social media. If someone only tweets occasionally and all of the tweets are trying to sell a product, they probably won’t be very successful or gain many followers. You have to enjoy engaging with others and gain their trust. If you look at my tweets, you’ll see that 99% of them are offering value to others or engaging with them. Very few are trying to sell others on my courses, though I do tweet about course discounts from time to time or mention giveaways.”


Even when it comes to YouTube, it’s all about providing value.

While Dan’s videos are used to gently promote his Udemy course whenever appropriate, the focus isn’t on selling.

“While I do put up videos that tie into my courses, every video can’t be about ‘how do I make money off of this viewer?’ I’m more concerned about putting up high quality material and building up a following of people who want more content to be released.”

Dan focuses on posting content that viewers will enjoy and that will build trust in his expertise in the tech field.

Once he has viewers’ trust, he knows they’ll be more likely to enroll in his course.

“You first need to show people why they should follow you, and actively engage with them as much as possible. Once they see the value you provide, it’s much easier for them to make the decision to purchase a course on their own without you having to constantly market to them. That’s not to say that frequent marketing is bad; I just prefer to add value first and market second.”


Social Media Contests Help Spread The Word

Dan recommends enticing people to enroll in your Udemy course by giving coupon codes to a few people via a social media contest.

“Have a contest on a social media network to get people enrolled while simultaneously spreading the word about your class. I run a contest where I ask people to retweet a specific message on Twitter. Those that do get entered into the contest and can win a free copy of a course. I grab all of the RTs and then randomly select several winners. It’s a good way to get the word out about a course.”

Getting a Large Number of Followers

According to Dan, planning out your content and following through with that plan is the easy part of promoting your Udemy course on social media.

The hard part is being persistent and continuing on your path even when your followers, sales, etc. aren’t doing as well as you’d hoped.

“If I were starting from scratch, I would first get some high quality content out there on a blog or on YouTube and start to build my own brand. It’s really hard to be successful otherwise because no one knows you or your content and they don’t have any reason to trust that you know what you’re talking about. Then you need to have enough drive to keep releasing posts, videos, etc. on a consistent basis.”

Tips to Remember:

The key, though, is to post even on days when you don’t feel like it. Don’t be afraid of failing, as it’s a great teacher. And be flexible when you realize changes need to be made to your plan in order for it to work.

“If you’re looking to build up your following to some huge number overnight, it’s just not going to happen. You need to give people a reason why they should follow you, and that generally comes down to the value you offer them, as well as being persistent.”


Takeaways | 3 Ways How You Can do it Too

  1. Provide free, valuable, high quality content to followers. Your social media posts, from tweets to YouTube videos, need to contain valuable content that regularly directs followers to your Udemy course without being pushy. Provide value to create trust that leads to sales.
  2. Focus on the social media sites where your audience hangs out. Rather than creating a page on every social media network, find out where your target audience spends most of its time and actively engage with them on those outlets.
  3. Consistently engage with your followers. Answer questions, provide tips, and interact with followers daily. Use social media contests to offer discount codes to your course.