[This is a long one, but don't miss out on the huge discount offer at the end of this post. ]
Transitioning to a New Business Model
I originally ran this site as a paid monthly membership program, but my administrative and teaching duties made it very difficult to maintain a regular update schedule. So for the last year and half the site content has been freely available while I waited for my term as department chair to end and I could resume a regular content creation schedule. I've been running Google ads on the site and have tried some affiliate marketing but I've never earned more than a couple hundred dollars a month from these sources.
Well, my term as chair is over and I'm back into content creation mode. And that means taking a fresh look at the business model.
Starting this month I'm phasing into a paid course model. But I don't want to suddenly pull the plug on those site visitors who have come to expect and in some cases rely on free content.
[Let me see this new course model right away.]
So here's how the new site rollout will go.
For now, all the free content available on the site will remain free
The main advantage of the tutorial pages on this site over YouTube is that they contain complete transcripts as well as the videos. There are many users if this site for whom English is not their native language, and the transcripts are very helpful in following the content. I'd like to continue to make transcripts available for all of the videos.
I will be setting up an e-commerce storefront on the site. It will allow visitors to preview and purchase pdf transcripts of all of the tutorials.
The store will also sell discounted bundles of transcripts plus accompanying video files. These may be of particular value to teachers who want to host video files on their class webpages or institutional servers. You can use your institution's course management resources to host these files.
When the store is up and running, I'll close free access to the video tutorials on this site.
If you're currently linking to tutorial courses on this site, eventually you'll need to redirect your links to the corresponding playlists on my YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/PhilosophyFreak.
New course content will be available exclusively on the new Critical Thinker Academy course hosted on Udemy
Udemy is a video-based training platform. It has many nice features for managing video-based content, including question-and-answer forums for each video and free iPad and iPhone apps for mobile access (an Android app is in development).
This new format takes care of all the course management details and is continually being improved. It lets me focus my energy on new content creation. It also lets me charge for access to the content.
Why would anyone pay for content that is available for free?
1. New video content will be available exclusively on the paid platform
For example, I'm currently working on a set of videos on fallacies of probabilistic reasoning and the psychology of belief and judgment. I have lots of other content planned as well.
So, if you're happy with the current set of videos that's great. But if you're interested in seeing where I'm going with the Academy, you'll want to register for the paid course.
Actually, I need to qualify this. Transcripts and videos for the new content will be available in the Academy store. So you won't need to register for the paid course to get access to this content. But the paid course gives you lifetime access to all of the content currently available, and all the content that will be created in the future.
2. The podcast episodes have been edited and integrated naturally into the course content
The video podcast episodes have been organized and edited to help structure a coherent curriculum for the course. The annoying intro music and (out of date) promotional chatter is gone, so what's left is just helpful content.
3. The paid course has more interactive features that add value to the course
I'm already busy answering student questions on the Udemy course site. Other students can reply to questions. On the Udemy site you have access to a growing community of people from all over the world who think that critical thinking is important. That's a valuable resource.
Okay, tell me more about this Udemy course
CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE COMPLETE LIST OF TUTORIALS PLUS A LINK FOR A HUGE DISCOUNT ON THE REGISTRATION PRICE!
If you have questions please don't hesitate to ask in the comments below!