Is it really possible to create an online business around painting figurines?  David Sharpe, CEO of Legendary Marketer had a chance to sit down with an online marketer who's done just that! 

If you are looking for ways to monetize a hobby or unique interest of a niche, this interview is for you.

On Tuesday’s episode of Wake Up Legendary with David Sharpe, Dave sat down with Lloyd Davies, a painting coach from South Wales, UK. He has been in the painting hobby for about 15 years and has been monetizing his hobby and turning it into a business for around three and a half years. Lloyd paints Warhammer 40,000 and Dungeons & Dragons figures, which are small pieces used in role playing board games typically painted by the person playing the games with custom game pieces. 

Lloyd started out as an affiliate marketer for a company that sold Warhammer products. He was given a product he was able to paint and from there his hobby-turned-business started to blossom; he began to create close up detailed videos of himself painting the products. These details include what to paint, what brush strokes, colors, and products to use, and a thorough description of the painting process. 

While his YouTube and Instagram accounts have gained popularity over the years, his TikTok account is just taking off at over 55,000 followers and his YouTube is currently at 65,000 followers and growing daily. From Day 1, Lloyd created content to build a business, not to just share his hobby.

Producing Content That Will Stay Evergreen

Lloyd specifically plans out his content to be Evergreen, content that will last and still be relevant several years from now. He feels as though some of the first videos he made were the best and wants to continue to create video painting tutorials. Most of the monetization of his content comes from his YouTube content but also from his affiliate links to Warhammer 40,000 painting products. At the end of each YouTube video he lets his viewer know that if they click and purchase from his affiliate link he gets a small commission that doesn't cost the viewer/buyer anything, but might be a good way to support his small business and provide value to the buyer as well.

His painting channels bring value to his life, which was something he felt was more important than doing his regular 9-5, which he is slowly transitioning out of to do his painting hobby/side business as a full time career. 

Improving Digital Skills And Adding Value To Your Content

He didn’t have the digital skills before, those were something he has developed along the way, which has added more value to his life. He invested time and energy into building his marketing skills so he could continue to grow his online business. All of his content is filmed with a Galaxy S20 FE smartphone, his video editing skills were self taught and part of the development of his business. YouTube keeps track of his videos and how well they perform, like how many people watch them and for how long. One tip he shared with David Sharpe during the interview was  he needed to shorten his content, but that the structure and style of his videos were popular for his audience. 

A highlight from the interview, Lloyd shared with David Sharpe, that his content creation and painting hobby has changed his life. Once the first commission hit his bank account, he knew it was real. Up until then it could sometimes make him feel like he was making the content for free and like it maybe wasn’t hitting the right audience but Lloyd feels it’s important to keep persevering and remember that eventually the content will hit the right audience. “This is not a habit, but a hobby that you enjoy that brings value to your life. And I do think that a lot of people underestimate the value that a particular business can contribute to their happiness versus just some number in their bank account,” David Sharpe said.

He says that his biggest reward is when someone tells him that his methods for painting Warhammer 40,000 gaming figurines work. “It’s about driving the value and everything I put out has to have value in it” Lloyd said. This means anything from explaining the painting process to explaining what happens when the paint dries, how it can sometimes look too shiny but will become more matte once dry and the brightness will dim. Lloyd adds value to his tutorial videos by explaining his painting process and gives step by step instructions to his viewer while painting an example himself. Whether that person is brand new to Warhammer painting or whether they have experience painting doesn’t matter because Lloyd’s content is for everyone. “Everything I do is always around value, (and) value proposition.”

Choosing The Content Platform That Is Right For Your Business

Sometimes this can be a time consuming hobby. Platforms fight over content and the algorithm doesn’t always push videos and content out to the right people, but there will be a lot more value added through TikTok content in the future so his content will hopefully be pushed to a larger audience. Lloyd shared some tips with David Sharpe that helped him decide that YoutTube would be the main platform that he would use for his content.

Tip #1- Lloyd said he originally chose YouTube as his main content platform because it’s the largest content site on the internet, along with the largest search engine and people typically go to YouTube to learn information such as how to do or create different things. “People go there to find out how to do things and I’m showing people how to do something so I want to post my how to do content on the biggest how to do platform in the world,” Lloyd said, That’s one of the things to really consider, going somewhere where your audience already is, because the audience is already there and I know the audience is already there because there are other similar channels producing similar types of content.” Choose a platform where you know that your audience will be looking for content from your niche there instead of chasing your audience. 

Tip #2- Take advantage of the tools already on platforms like YouTube and TikTok. YouTube does all of the hard work for you such as the technical and back end work, so all you have to do is create the video and upload it. YouTube is a content platform that will be around for years to come, you just have to have the self discipline and resilience to sit down and edit videos, even if you don’t always want to. YouTube is long form content, Lloyd tells us, and there will always be a market for long form content and tutorials. “All you need to do is create a video to put on YouTube that's probably simplifying it a little bit but certainly the heavy tech stuff is done,” Lloyd said. 

Dealing With Insecurities When Producing Content

When first starting out, you have to know why you’re creating content and what your motive is behind it. When first starting out, Lloyd had insecurities but knew that there were other channels in his niche with 350-400 or more subscribers that had just started and accounts that also had only 1-10 subscribers. Some Youtube channels started creating content before he did and can make you question yourself, but Lloyd says the most important thing to remember is that the only person that you are your only competition.It’s really really important to understand what your race is and to run your race, the only person you’re competing against is yourself,” Lloyd said. Another strategy that is helpful when you are first starting with creating your business, is the way that you ask yourself questions. He explains that when asking yourself a question, instead of asking yourself “why”, for example, “why did this happen?”, ask yourself “what is going on?”. The question of ‘why?’ can elicit an emotional response and can be accusatory even in your own self-questioning, but asking yourself ‘what’ stead will elicit a logical response.

The way Lloyd has stayed focused and has not lost or changed his vision is because he knows he is not the best content creator in the world or even in his Warhammer 40,000 niche.  He has accepted that and knows if someone does something better than him that it’s okay and will create his content in his own way because his way resonates better with his customers and followers. Every job you have there’s going to be someone already there who’s better at it than you,” Lloyd said. 

He knows his business growth will be successful because he is committed to it, and to him, that means that he'll continue to grow his business and master his painting hobby in years to come. He wants to be a content creator and enjoys sharing valuable information with other people in his niche. He enjoys helping others have more fun with their hobby along with delivering value to his customers and subscribers. 

His number one value is freedom and this is freedom and the path he has chosen to take in his career. It’s much easier for him to get out of bed in the morning and do his work now and he gets to connect with like-minded people with similar values to him each day. If you want to learn more about Lloyd and his Warhammer 40,000 painting hobby turned business, follow him @thepaintingcoach on YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram.

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