House of Afrodite “Thought I Wanted To Be” Mini-Series is where I document my progress to find a side hustle that will turn into a location independent gig. DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in this post are purely my own and should in no way influence your decision to enroll in this course.
As you know, I’m on a journey to find a side hustle that will allow me to eventually leave my corporate job. If you didn’t know, feel free to read all about it here. I do have to warn you that this was not my one and only attempt to find something.
This was not the one and only time I plunked down money for a program that captured my interest. At the time.
This isn’t called a mini-series for nothing.
In this post about Writing Case Studies: How to Make a Great Living by Helping Clients Tell Their Stories, you’ll find out what I liked about this course and my results. This self-guided program will give you step-by-step formulas, strategies and frameworks and teaches you everything you need to know to get started in the world of case study writing. This program is offered by American Writers and Artists, Inc (AWAI), the world’s leading provider of copy writing training programs since 1997.
If, like me, you’re looking for a side hustle and want to know if shelling out $297 is right for you, I’ll get to that down below. But first, who the hell is Ed Gandia and why should you trust them to help you earn extra income?
MEET YOUR HOST: Ed Gandia
ED GANDIA is a sought-after B2B copywriter, author, speaker and coach. His current and past copywriting clients include Autodesk, CDC Software, Constructware, Stibo Systems, ToolWatch, Aldata System and more than a dozen other enterprise software companies.
Ed’s latest book, The Wealthy Freelancer, was named a Top 10 Small Business Book by Small Business Trends. His mom voted for the book. Five times.
Ed is also the author of a number of popular programs here at AWAI, including “Writing Case Studies: How to Make a Great Living by Helping Clients Tell Their Stories” and “How to Write White Papers that Command Top Fees.” He also runs the popular website www.InternationalFreelancersAcademy.com, where he publishes free training every month.
His insights, rants and psychobabble have been featured in Inc. magazine, CNN Radio, CBS Radio News, The Christian Science Monitor, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, DM News, AirTran Airways’ Go magazine and The Writer, among others.
Writing Case Studies: How to Make a Great Living by Helping Clients Tell Their Stories is hosted on the AWAI site. When you sign up to become a member, you have your own personal portal. There, you can access any programs you purchased, live events you have registered for, and special bonuses. Here are all the individual sections in this course:
Module 1: The Lucrative Business of Case Study Writing
Module 2: The Winning Case Study Structure
Module 3: Discovery and Planning
Module 4: The Interview Process
Module 5: Writing Your Case Study Draft
Module 6: Managing Your Case Study Projects
Module 7: How to Land Case Study Projects
Module 8: Anatomy of a Case Study
WHY I THOUGHT I WANTED TO BE A CASE STUDY WRITER
That’s why I thought I wanted to do this. The storytelling aspect of a case study. What are case studies, you ask? Well, simply put, case studies are short pieces that describe how a company or organization solved a challenge with a product or service — and what the results of solving that challenge were. It’s a “before and after” story.
As a writer, one of the many things I love to do is research. Part of that research may involve interviewing SMEs (Subject Matter Experts, in case you were wondering). I thought “I could do that.” The idea is that the client provides you with people to interview and you only have to spend about 30 minutes on the phone getting some info.
My focus was going to be nonprofits, small businesses, one-woman shops, that type of thing. I was actually excited about it because I could get creative with it. There’s a formula that case studies follow: formal and informal. I was thinking I could do the more informal style (journalistic), but put my own creative storytelling spin on it.
I took notes while I went through the program, checked out similar sites to see what they were charging, and had even considered getting additional training by taking Casey Hibbard’s courses. Like I said, I had a plan. I was playing around with names for the business, making a list of places to contact, etc.
But then I began to wonder when/how I would be able to conduct the interviews. This side hustle was supposed to bring in extra money, but it would be kinda hard to do if I didn’t have a private area to conduct the phone interviews.
My current job allows me to work from home one day a week. I figured I could conduct the interviews during my lunch hour in the privacy of my home.
WHAT I LIKED
- They offer a payment plan.
- The lifetime access to this program if I ever get a wild hair up my butt and want to go back through it.
- Customer service. They respond promptly within 24-48 hrs. And when you call, you (especially to set up that payment plan), you speak to an actual person and they’re nice.
- It’s self-guided. So, again, if I ever get a wild hair up my butt and want to go back through it, I can take as long as I want.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
- No direct access to the host of the program. If I had questions about the content, I couldn’t email Ed directly.
- There’s a Main Member Forum that I’m not too impressed with. If you post a question, you may not get a response for weeks. I think I would’ve preferred a more intimate FB group. But I understand why there’s only one main forum. When you offer a shit ton of programs, and people may purchase several of them, it would probably be harder to maintain forums for each program.
- The information hasn’t been updated in 5 years, since it was first published in 2012. But AWAI states: “All the information in our programs is relevant to the industry trends. We do update our programs information when a new trend has emerged in an industry. We notify our members via email whenever there is an update done to a program.”
Towards the end of the program, I came across another program that was planting a seed in my head: the non-client seed. This wee little seed was making me wonder if I even wanted to move forward with the whole case study thing.
THIS SIDE HUSTLE IS FOR YOU IF…
- You love to write
- You’re a people-person and are comfortable interviewing them.
- You want to help businesses tell their story
Next Week: Side Hustle Idea #5