A look at the business and monetization potential of an online business which serves teachers.
I always like to look at any business niche from the standpoint of who you serve, what they need and want. This market makes itself pretty clear to me.
Who are they? Teachers (both grade school or preschool). Might even include homeschooling parents.
What’s the problem they have? Coming up with lesson plans. The time it takes to do that. Lesson support.
Preschool teachers are often much more on their own to come up with materials. Grade school teachers are often given curriculum to use, however they’re still often on their own to develop aids, lesson plans and such. In many cases, you’ll have teachers who work hard during the day, then they feel like they have to use their personal time at home in order to development materials to be used when they’re back in the classroom.
Homeschool parents have an even bigger issue because they’re totally on their own. There is quite a large market out there for homeschooling curriculums, but even when you are using one of those, there are still gaps that a homeschooling parent has to figure out on their own. And who can they turn to for help if things aren’t going as smoothly?
So, if you like kids and have experience in education, I think there’s good opportunity in this market.
Since this is a great market, there are a lot of people doing it. You will find a lot of paid ads in Google searches for companies selling materials as well as stores selling physical products for teachers to use in the classroom.
In terms of blogs, some of the ones I found are:
- Fun-A-Day. She does a great job with this blog. Looks like she has built a big email list and monetizes primarily through affiliate marketing. Pinterest is a major traffic source for her.
- PreKinders. Built a massive email list by offering free printables via the email list each week. A great strategy. Looks like her main monetization strategy is selling some of her own materials via Teachers Pay Teachers.
- Learning In Wonderland.
- Beyond The Worksheet. Specifically for math teachers. Has downloadables and a membership she only opens once per year. Nicely done.
- Preschool Plan It. Sells themed lesson plans and materials for preschool teachers. This business is doing pretty well. She has been one of my Platinum clients.
Market Gaps I See
A lot of people seem to be selling their stuff via Teachers Pay Teachers, yet according to this page they take quite a bit of the proceeds for themselves. If you’re not a paying member, you only get 55% of the proceeds and you pay 30 cents per sale on top of that. If you upgrade to their premium membership, you get 80% of proceeds and pay 15 cents per sale.
So, I think a big opportunity here if you were going to create your own materials is to sell them directly, without a middleman. Use your own selling platform or even a membership platform and sell them as digital downloads.
You could even take it the extra mile and become a publisher, allowing other teachers to publish their stuff on YOUR site and you get a cut. Essentially, compete with Teachers Pay Teachers.
I also notice that a lot of the blogs out there don’t seem to offer actual lead magnets. The size of some of the lists out there given the weak optins is really awesome. It really show the strength of the market to me. Seems you could improve upon the optin strategy by providing something really awesome for getting onto the list.
Monetization Opportunities could include:
- Selling lesson plans and support
- Business support resources for private school owners, daycares and preschools
- Affiliate marketing for stores which sell physical tools for teachers to use in the classroom
- Online support for homeschooling, perhaps even tutoring service aimed specifically at homeschooling parents
- Being a virtual assistant for teachers. Now, most teachers are on a budget so you might want to explore different pricing models to make it more economical. But, helping teachers deal with the “busy work” and giving shortcuts to it could be lucrative.
Here is a list of the top 8 classroom challenges by teachers. Help solve these problems and you could make a business around it.