From Podcast to Online Course: Why This Entrepreneur Chose Heights for his Relationship Coaching Business.
Paul Colaianni is a Behavior and Relationship Coach. He hosts two podcasts, Love and Abuse and The Overwhelmed Brain, which provides relationship advice and receives around 350,000 downloads per month.
Following the success of his podcast, Paul has now reinvented his knowledge and content into an online course with Heights Platform.
By creating an online course with Heights Platform, Paul is now able to exceptionally deliver his content in a more organized way, where he can track his students’ progress and results like never before.
Who is Paul Colaianni?
What we know about him is that he loves the little joys in life: playing guitar, being surrounded by nature, maintaining happy and stable relationships with his loved ones. Today Paul leads his two successful podcasts and lives a happy life. But his journey was not always easy.
Following a problematic childhood in New England, US, Paul had to endure several break-ups and one divorce before having an emotional awakening. He finally realized that something had to change, he had turn his life upside down. This is when Paul discovered coaching, took some courses in NLP, and learned about hypnosis. After 10 years of studying, Paul was ready to be certified as a coach.
He loves his work as a content creator, and has a great relationship with his girlfriend.
The Story Behind Paul's Success
Paul was not always a podcast and online course creator.
Up to 2013, Paul had a 9-5 job as a subcontractor working with computers and technology. After working for the same company most of his life, Paul was ready for a promotion.
His manager at the time kept promising a promotion - but that never happened.
Paul decided to confront him and asked him ‘what is the next step for me?’
The answer was: “Just keep an eye on the job board”. Just as he would say to anyone else applying for a job for the first time.
After devoting himself to the same company for years and years, Paul did not take this lightly.
This is where he decided that he had to take charge of his life. He heard people at work talking about entrepreneurs who started a blog, and a podcast, and they were making money online with passive income.
“And I realized there's a lot of business ideas here. Why don't I just create a podcast? Everyone always says, Hey, you have a radio voice. You should be on the radio. So I decided to move in that direction.”
And that is exactly what he did. He left the corporate world to become an online entrepreneur.
Once Paul decided to pursue the podcast idea, he had to choose a topic and a name.
When someone asked him the question “What do you want to name your podcast?” he answered, “I don't know, I just want to help people get out of their overwhelm”.
“So that's where the name - The Overwhelmed Brain - came from. And they liked it. And I started the show from that point on, I wanted to make it an interview show. But then it turned into a solo monologue show about all the lessons I've learned and everything I can teach people that I've learned over the years. This then developed into the business I have today: helping people get out of the overwhelm, which is the same thing that I went through, something that I can talk about.”
Today The Overwhelmed Brain receives about 30,000 downloads per new episode. He now has close to 400 episodes and over 1300 ratings on Apple Podcasts.
"Today The Overwhelmed Brain receives about 30,000 downloads per new episode."
It doesn’t happen overnight
Back when Paul worked as a subcontractor, his blog and podcasts were merely a hobby. Once he quit and was unemployed, he started putting more effort into transforming his hobby into a business.
But it wasn’t easy.
So he started to invest time and money into growing his online business.
With food, rent, and daily expenses to pay for, time was running out for Paul.
“Six months into it, you know, all this money is coming out of my account. And I realize this isn't gonna last forever. And I had the thoughts of quitting.”
Not only was Paul not making any money, but he also had no idea if anyone actually liked his podcasts. By that time, he could see that some people were listening to him, but no one really commented or gave any feedback yet.
Not surprisingly, he was feeling demotivated and had the thought of quitting and going back to his corporate job.
“I've been doing all this work in silence, with no feedback for months and months. I just kept moving forward until I thought, I just can't do this, nobody's benefiting from this”.
But then something amazing happened.
One day, Paul received an email.
The email came from someone who listened to the podcast and who suddenly donated $40 to him, as she liked Paul’s advice and actually learned a lot from him! At this point, Paul was surely not expecting any donation, and he was releasing all of his content for free.
“It was just mind-blowing to me.”
This first donation, unexpected as it was, represented a turning point for Paul as he realized that his podcast was having a positive impact on his listeners.
Shortly after this, Paul started to receive more and more messages from people thanking him for what they learned. This further incentivized Paul to continue producing content and providing value.
From this point forward, with newfound confidence, Paul decided to stop looking at his podcast only as a way to make money.
Instead, he decided to look at it as a way to provide value to his listeners and share his honest advice.
Once his mindset shifted, his audience started to appreciate and trust him more and more.
Thinking back on the start of his podcast, Paul now realizes the importance of self-confidence and believing in yourself. Similar to other creators, he suffered from the so-called “Imposter Syndrome”: believing that you are not as competent as others in your field.
“I believe the biggest challenge I faced was just not believing in myself”
- Paul Colaianni
Paul’s experience shows us that in order to succeed, you don’t have to be an absolute expert in what you are teaching: as long as you have valuable concepts that will help your students and you are able to explain them in an understandable way, with a little bit of patience, your hard work will pay off.
The Shift Towards Online Courses
After the success of his podcasts, Paul decided that it was time to bring his business to the next level. The idea of creating an online course seemed like a natural extension of spreading his knowledge.
The main reason why Paul decided to bring his content into an online course was to better organize his work and collect all of his teachings into one place. So initially he simply started to gather all his lessons into a PDF and he thought about selling it online. But there was still something missing.