Daphne Gomez is a former teacher turned entrepreneur. After dealing with extreme stress from being a teacher, she now helps other educators leave the classroom and find less stressful roles with her company called Teacher Career Coach.
Helping teachers leave the classroom is a hard topic to cover, one that most people don’t want to discuss in public. Which I’m sure makes it even harder to build an audience online.
Yet, Daphne’s grown her email list to over 100k in just over 3 years.
Let’s dive in and take a look at how she’s been able to grow this so quickly.
How Daphne Makes Money
I think you’ll be surprised at how much Daphne and the Teacher Career Coach brand are able to bring into the business while selling to one of the most underpaid professions out there: teachers.
Daphne has a flagship course appropriately called the Teacher Career Coach Course.
The course sells for $179, or 3 payments of $49.
I don’t have data on how many courses she sells, but the next way she makes money is pretty mind-boggling.
One of the big ways Daphne gets people onto her list is through a quiz that helps teachers figure out what their next career move might look like.
On the results page, after someone takes the quiz, there is an option to buy a full report with 40+ job ideas and lots more information for $9.
Daphne has a job board on Teacher Career Coach as well. Her audience can search for jobs there, but the companies actually posting them have to pay to list jobs.
The prices are either $99 or $119 for a 30-day listing.
The Teacher Career Coach podcast has sponsors throughout the episodes. I have no data on the income she makes from these, but they are an additional source of revenue.
Affiliate marketing is another way Daphne makes money through Teacher Career Coach.
She has publicly said that she is extremely selective with these programs though because she wants to ensure it’s a perfect fit.
The Growth Timeline
Daphne started this business in late 2019, while she was still working at her day job.
She ran it on the side until the end of 2021, and that’s when the business seemed to have just exploded.
Daphne’s Instagram account and her email list have grown together, fast.
It’s clear that these two work really well together. Daphne also has a podcast that she started in October 2020, and a LinkedIn account that she’s been more heavily reliant on since she left her job in 2021.
The Growth Levers of Daphne Gomez
1. Search and SEO. Daphne found a big gap between the content teachers were looking for and what was online. She set out to build a comprehensive content catalog that brings in the highest converting people to her website.
2. Becoming a Master of Instagram. No, Instagram isn’t dead. And the way Daphne flips the script on what content is typically shared on IG is brilliant.
3. The Hyper-Focused Funnel. Everything leads to the newsletter. But it doesn’t stop there. Daphne sends those raving fans right back to the top of the funnel to spread the word.
4. The 6-Figure Quiz. Daphne set up a pretty simple quiz as a lead magnet that brings in over six figures per year. Not only that, it converts around 24% of people into paying customers.
Many of the other deep dives I’ve done have focused at least partly on Twitter as a way to grow the email list.
Daphne barely has a following there, which is one of the reasons I was so interested in her story.
1. Search and SEO
When she started the blog in 2019, she knew there were tons of searches that she had done that came up with no results.
So, she knew there was a big gap between the content that teachers were looking for and what was out there. Even searches like “jobs for teachers” were coming up with few good results.
Daphne wanted to start creating content that would help her audience answer those questions.
Daphne learned quickly that SEO was an important lever when she found out that it was one of the highest converting traffic sources into sales for her course.
Creating a Content Catalog
Instead of trying to spend a ton of time and learn SEO, Daphne hired someone to tell her the relevant topics and keywords that would be the easiest for her to rank for.
Once she had that list, she got to work.
There are now hundreds of articles on the site, all helpful topics that a teacher might be searching for if they’re considering leaving the classroom.
Daphne said she now gets around 1,500-2,000 clicks from Google every day.
Because Daphne knows the industry so well and lived through these experiences, she’s able to figure out what other pieces of content will resonate with her audience.
She also creates new content based on questions people ask.
If someone says, “Well I’m a special education teacher, I’m not sure if this would work for me.”
You better believe that Daphne has created a guide on the top jobs for special education teachers.
Turning Podcast Episodes into Full Guides
She didn’t just create the best guides and then stop building content.
Daphne has been improving the site over time and revamping some of the content she’s already created, like her podcast episodes.
Daphne launched the Teacher Career Coach podcast in October 2020.
Like most podcasters, she would post an episode player on the page, add a few paragraphs of text, and that was about it.
Here is what the article for episode 24 of her podcast looked like in April of 2021:
It was okay, but these types of podcast summary pages rarely rank in Google for any good keywords.
Daphne realized that she had a big missed opportunity in terms of these pieces of content working for her on multiple fronts.
In May of 2022, she started revamping these pages to not only make them more valuable for her readers but also add some juicy content that Google might want to show in search results.
Here is what that page looks like now:
That screenshot is about a third of the page, I couldn’t fit it all in one. You can see the full page here.
It’s over 5,000 words long, has so much more valuable information, and would actually be an article that someone could get value from even if they didn’t listen to the podcast episode.
The results? That page now ranks for more keywords and brings in more search traffic every month.
Those stats are for that single page for the episode.
Here’s one showing the entire website:
I’m not suggesting that’s the only thing that caused this huge spike in traffic and ranking keywords, but it seems to have helped 🙂
Features on Major News Outlets
A side benefit of building such a robust database of helpful content is that when you rank highly, people start to notice. Including journalists.
Journalists are people too, they also use Google to find information for their stories.
They might go to Google and search for:
- Part-time jobs for teachers
- Quitting teaching
- Jobs for former teachers
- Teachers leaving the classroom
And they’d find Teacher Career Coach because she ranks in the top 3 for these terms.
Some of the massive backlinks Daphne has been able to get include:
- Wall Street Journal
These are big sites, with a lot of readers. While I’m not certain these came simply from her ranking in Google, I’m sure it didn’t hurt.
2. Becoming a Master of Instagram
First off, Instagram is not dead – you’re just doing it wrong.
Daphne’s grown her account to over 110k followers, with over 70k of those getting added in the last year.
It’s just fascinating to see the growth there and learn how a master at the Instagram platform grows it.
Here are a few of the really smart things she’s done to grow there:
A lot of creators using Instagram post mostly their own content.
- Reposting tweets
- Images or graphics about their content
Daphne took a different approach, which I freaking love.
Instead of just blabbing on about her ideas and her story, she puts her community at the center of the content.
And she’s been doing it since the beginning of her account.
Here’s a screenshot of the early days of her IG, around December 2019.
Here is one of those posts to give you an idea of what I’m talking about.
She quotes the person, uses their picture as the post, and even tags their Instagram account.
Using her customers’ own words is genius.
Not only do people get to see that a real person was able to do this, but that real person is also using language that resonates with them.
And it’s led to people being excited to share their own journeys and tag her Instagram account because they could get featured.
The account now has over 111,000 followers, which she’s grown from around 40k in about 14 months.
Asking People to Share
This might be a subtle thing, but it’s not to be overlooked.
Not only does Daphne post really great content that resonates with her audience, but she’s asking them to share too.
It’s as simple as adding a line at the end of the caption to say “if you know another teacher who is struggling, share this with them so they know they can find help here.”
Putting that trigger into their minds over and over seems to be working.
Since her content is about people saying they want to leave their job, they’re not exactly going to share it like they would a cool quote or a cool picture.
But if you ask people to share, the chances are they’re more likely to think: “Oh yea, I know Brenda is having a hard time too – let me send her this.”
Driving Followers Into Her Ecosystem
As I mentioned above, Daphne has built a huge content library.
This makes it super simple for her to help people by just dropping a link to helpful content she’s already created.
Since she’s posting success stories of former teachers, the comments on those posts are things like:
- “How can I get started”
- “I don’t even know what job I’d do that isn’t teaching”
And naturally, Daphne has a ton of content that she can share as a comment.
Here’s an example:
Not only does this help that one person, but the other people who have seen that content are also able to use that information.
Whether it’s a podcast episode about that topic, an article, or even her “which career is right for me” quiz, Daphne always has something useful to drive them to.
And if she doesn’t, but starts hearing the same question multiple times, she can create a new piece of content around that to keep people in her ecosystem.
3. The Hyper-Focused Funnel
Everything I’ve shown you up to this point is impressive on its own.
But here is where it starts to get really interesting.
Here is a graphic I put together of how I see Daphne’s assets and funnel at this point.
She has the top level of the funnel which is around discovery. Her website and articles get traffic from these places.
The second tier is all about her owned assets – podcast episodes she’s recorded, articles on her website for people to read, and also her quiz – which I’ll get to next, don’t skip that!
But everything gets funneled into the newsletter at some point or another.
And just like Harry Dry does with Marketing Examples, the newsletter also sends people back to those other platforms.
Sending people in a loop like this keeps them within your ecosystem.
While the main goal is to get people on the newsletter, your job isn’t done when they get there.
Those people trust you enough to let you into their inbox, you should encourage them to like, comment, and share on other platforms and get more people into the ecosystem.
As the other platforms grow, eventually some of those people end up on the newsletter too. And the cycle continues.
But how can you convert those people from the discovery platforms over to your newsletter?
4. The 6-Figure Quiz
Daphne has built a super compelling, golden bridge for people to take from her discovery platforms and website over to her newsletter.
Enter: the career quiz.
I’ve heard of other people using quizzes to get people on their email list – but Daphne’s implementation of it just seems so natural with her brand.
Her audience is burnt out, frustrated, and ready for something new – but they don’t quite know what that is yet.
All they think they know how to do is teach.
Here comes Daphne as the hero with this free quiz that helps you figure out what your next career path might be.
The quiz is a simple 9 questions long, and at the end, you get asked for your name and email to see the results.
Based on your answers to the questions, there are 6 career paths you might see.
Here were my results:
That page lists out a good bit of other information about why this is a good fit, as well as a few ideas for careers that fit with these results.
Then you’re presented with an offer to get the full career transition guide.
This is a 40-page PDF that has checklists, career ideas and opportunities, and a whole host of information about the transition from teacher to other careers.
If you remember from before, this is the $9 guide I was talking about earlier.
So let’s dig in and see why so many people seem to be snatching up this offer.
After that top results piece, there are a few main components to this page:
1. “Here’s What That Means”
This section helps give them an idea of what they can use their skills for and gives them a push of confidence that they can make this transition.
Daphne is overcoming some objections around being scared, or not knowing how to transfer the skills they have into a new role. Because she’s giving them a category of new roles, she’s able to really hone in on those skills.
2. Example Careers
These are super-tailored career ideas that someone can use to get a grasp of what a new job might look like for them.
3. “Why is it difficult to transition from teaching?”
Again, Daphne is overcoming some of the main concerns people have about leaving.
She explains how the guide will help, and even says something like “I’ve dropped the price to just $9 because I don’t want you to have any excuses to talk yourself out of this.”
She compares the price of the guide to the cost of a latte and a pastry.
4. You don’t have to do this alone.
She gives a brief overview of her story and how she’s done this exact thing before – this adds credibility.
She includes social proof by saying “over 20,000 like-minded educators” have gotten this guide.
5. She includes an image of everything included, as well as a bulleted list. This list details everything and makes it obvious that this is a no-brainer to get.
6. Testimonials – Daphne has a testimonial of someone who had gotten the guide and loved it.
7. Daphne’s story. She then includes a few paragraphs about her journey and how she’s helped people in the same position.
At the end of the page, you are presented a form to enter your credit card and buy the $9 guide.
Yes, a 40-page PDF might not appeal to you, but teachers seem to love this.
Daphne’s Advice Around Quizzes
Daphne made it clear in an interview that you shouldn’t go too far into the weeds on building a ton of things.
While you might have 9-10 questions, only 2-3 of them really change the path and the answer they should get.
For example, she asks people what their timeline for leaving the classroom looks like.
If someone is looking to leave their job tomorrow, that’s going to give them a different result than if they are just kicking the tires.
The rest of the quiz is helping you learn about your audience and allows them to reflect on their experiences.
Daphne uses a tool called Interact to build this, or you can use something like Right Message which has a lot more functionality.
Building a 6-figure income stream on the back of a quiz sounds pretty great to me.
And let’s not forget, that this $9 opt-in eventually leads to her selling her $179 course as well.
How You Can Use These Growth Levers
Daphne has built a full ecosystem of content that helps her audience.
1. Build a Content Library
Daphne has put together a large library of content that she can reference at any given moment. And that ranks in search engines when people type those questions into Google.
This wasn’t done overnight, but she’s been able to create the best content around those topics, which builds authority and gets people to share with others.
Ideas for content you can create and build a library of content:
- Questions you get repeatedly
- Topics and content you’re seeing asked elsewhere
- Stories about what you’ve struggled with in the past
These strategic pieces of valuable content are things she can reference on Instagram, the podcast, interviews she does, and even personal emails.
Remember: this doesn’t have to be perfect from day 1.
You can iterate and add more content later on, kind of like how Daphne did with the podcast episodes.
2. Put Your Community First
Building a robust Instagram community is still possible, I think we’ve seen that. Instead of posting about yourself all of the time, try highlighting people in your community.
This is probably great news for introverts like me who don’t like being the center of attention. Daphne said her content on IG is around 5% her, and 95% the students and success stories.
You might not have success stories you can leverage on Instagram just yet.
But maybe you can call out people who have had success in the same industry. These can be inspirational for your audience, and you’re making that person feel good, which may lead them to share the content.
Over time, you’ll start to get emails from people who you’ve helped, and you can share those.
Use Instagram as a way to get people into your funnel and ecosystem.
As you build out content, you can share those where relevant when people ask questions in the comments.
3. Engineer a Content Funnel
Engineer? Funnel? I know that sounds hard, but it can be pretty simple.
Pick 1-2 discovery platforms you’re going to focus on, and after researching Daphne, it might make sense to choose Instagram as one. 🙂
Find clever ways to drive people from that top discovery piece, down to the next level.
This can be through:
- Commenting with a piece of content they can use
- Sharing a clip of your podcast episode and telling people where to find it
- Using the link in bio in a smart way
Funnel into the Newsletter
Once they’re on your website or listening to your podcast, make sure that you are driving them into your newsletter.
After all, that’s the only channel you own, where you can easily reach people again.
There should be multiple places you’re asking people to join:
- At the beginning and end of articles
- In the sidebar
- Add a popup that shows if someone’s been on the site for 30+ seconds
Get creative with it.
Don’t Stop Once They’re on Your Email List
Everything comes full circle.
And you want to make sure you’re not just stopping the promotion when you get them on the newsletter – those subscribers are now your raving fans, so you should be sending them to other platforms to spread the word.
4. Build a Quiz
One way to make it really enticing to get people on your email list is with a quiz.
Think about the most common question you get. Most of the time the answer to that question is going to be “it depends.”
Is there a way to reverse engineer a quiz that will drive people to the right answer for them?
As long as you have some kind of information that’s valuable and a question people ask regularly, this can be really useful.
This quiz can be really useful in driving people into your email list, and then you can send them right back to the discovery channels and the cycle continues.