Smart From Scratch

How to Find a Winning Business Idea & Land Your First Customer.

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  • 40+ video lessons, showing you how to find your winning business idea and land your first customer
  • Access on mobile, and tablet friendly
  • Completely self-paced
  • Full lifetime access
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Teachable Best Price Guarantee™

If you find it cheaper anywhere else, we'll refund you the difference.

Your Outcome

You will choose your business idea and land your first customer.

Will your business idea work? Learn how to test it.

It's these questions that keep aspiring business owners up at night: "Will my idea work? Are there enough customers? How do I know there isn't a better idea out there?"

Smart From Scratch® is a hands-on, comprehensive course that enables you to develop a business idea, validate it, and determine if that idea is viable to pursue. Learn how to test whether or not there's an audience for your business idea.

All business ideas need validation, even this online course. That’s why I launched Smart from Scratch® to a select number of founding students in late 2016. The founding students helped shape the course content with their amazing feedback. Now, thanks to them, Smart From Scratch® is tested, validated, and ready to help you find your business idea!

Hi, I'm Pat Flynn. Here's why I created Smart From Scratch®

I run several successful businesses, including Smart Passive Income, Green Business Academy, and SPI Labs. Over the course of the last decade, I've conceived of and developed dozens of products and new businesses. I've both succeeded and failed, and all the while I've charted my progress to find what works and what doesn't. I've also interviewed hundreds of other business owners to learn from their stories, which you can find on The Smart Passive Income Podcast.

I've heard the same struggles from aspiring entrepreneurs time and again: "I don't know how to find a business idea," or "I don't know if my idea will work," or the biggest one, "I'm afraid I will fail."

I want you to learn from my successes and failures. I’ve poured these experiences into the Smart From Scratch® course to give you insight into the business strategies that truly work from start to finish. I'm here to help you find your idea, to figure out if it will work, and to teach you how to fail early so that it doesn't hurt as much. I'm here to help you—let's get started!

A business course without the crashing

Smart From Scratch® was designed for your success. Each and every facet of the course, from its length to action items, was carefully planned to serve that goal.

  • Course length: The course includes three distinct stages (along with an additional bonus module) to take you from idea to business. See the Course Curriculum below for a detailed course outline. How long the course takes is up to you—you can work at your own pace. Once you enroll, the course is always available to you.
  • Action items, including target audience research, network engagement, and prospect follow-up.
  • Regular opportunities to provide your honest feedback about the course.

What you will learn

Success from the ground up.

Across three distinct stages, you’ll be treated to a highly detailed rundown of what it takes to:

  • Find an idea that works for you, even if you don’t know where to start.
  • Define and refine your business idea so that you can move forward and test the best, most viable option.
  • Develop and execute a plan for reaching out to people interested in learning about your idea.
  • Create the proper channels for following up with prospects and pre-selling your product or service. My goal is to help you get your first customer!

Who it's for

Making your impact.

Smart From Scratch® was designed for students looking to make an impact in the business world but who may not have the tools to help get them there.

You are an aspirer. You yearn to make your mark on the world. Maybe you even have an idea for a business or an amazing product, but you're not sure what to do next. Or maybe you're having trouble coming up with an idea in the first place. Smart From Scratch® is the course to help you identify and validate your idea, so you can begin building a business that works.

What Students Say

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Course Curriculum

Welcome Students!

  • Welcome! Watch This Video First (5:35)
  • Course Downloads

Stage 1: Idea and Market Visibility

  • Lesson 01: Setting Expectations (1:22)
  • Lesson 02: Focusing On Real Business (3:14)
  • Lesson 03: Figuring Out Your Top Idea (17:39)
  • Lesson 04: Discovering Your Niche (17:17)
  • Lesson 05: Researching Your Customers (13:49)
  • Lesson 06: Positioning Your Business Idea (11:43)
  • Lesson 07: Reaching Out for First Reaction (8:14)
  • Lesson 08: Reflecting On Your Plan (2:32)
  • Lesson 09: What's Coming Up in Stage 2!

Stage 2: Adjust and Refine

  • Lesson 01: Creating Goals (4:00)
  • Lesson 02: Building Your Mind Map (32:11)
  • Lesson 03: Making Sense of Your Mind Map (6:28)
  • Lesson 04: Prototyping Your Idea (10:19)
  • Lesson 05: Connecting for Feedback (5:34)
  • Lesson 06: Checking Your Excitement Levels (3:07)

Stage 3: Testing

  • Lesson 01: Finding Your Direction (2:32)
  • Lesson 02: Selling Before You Build (6:53)
  • Lesson 03: Developing Your Pitch (6:57)
  • Lesson 04: Collecting Payments (9:22)
  • Lesson 05: The Fortune Is in the Follow-up (9:55)
  • Lesson 06: Maintaining Your Smart Business (5:08)
  • What's Next?

Bonus: Build Your Own Brand Course

  • Learn How to Start a Website: Why I'm Including This Bonus
  • BYOB Day 1 – Lesson 1: How to Build a Successful Brand (7:47)
  • BYOB Day 1 – Lesson 2: Picking a Brand Name (8:51)
  • BYOB Day 1 – Lesson 3: Getting Your Website Up (20:52)
  • BYOB Day 1 – Lesson 4: Setting Up Your Email Account (10:28)
  • BYOB Day 2 – Lesson 1: Picking a Theme + An Important Lesson! (5:01)
  • BYOB Day 2 – Lesson 2: Necessary Plugins (24:01)
  • BYOB Day 2 – Lesson 3: Google Analytics (5:54)
  • BYOB Day 2 – Lesson 4: Google Search Console (3:30)
  • BYOB Day 3 – Lesson 1: Your First (and Most Important) Page (18:34)
  • BYOB Day 3 – Lesson 2: Clean Up! (12:14)
  • BYOB Day 3 – Lesson 3: Navigation and More Pages (11:53)
  • BYOB Day 3 – Lesson 4: Building Your Home Page (25:13)
  • BYOB Day 4 – Lesson 1: Social Media 101 (17:20)
  • BYOB Day 4 – Lesson 2: Authority Figures & Influencers (16:45)
  • BYOB Day 5 – Lesson 1: Creating a Content Plan (23:26)
  • BYOB Day 5 – Lesson 2: Logos, Themes, & Other Website Items (15:07)
  • BYOB Day 5 – Lesson 3: How to Build Your Email List (and Why It's So Important!)
  • BYOB Day 5 – Lesson 4: You've Gotten This Far . . . (2:13)

Office Hours

  • Office Hours

Your Instructor

Pat Flynn
Founder, Smart Passive Income

Pat Flynn is a blogger, podcaster, author and course creator, best known for his website SmartPassiveIncome.com. On his blog, Pat shares what works – and what doesn't – so that you know exactly how to build a better business. Pat is also the host of the popular Smart Passive Income Podcast, a show with over 11 million downloads that has been featured in the New York Times.

Frequently asked questions

When does the course start and finish?

Smart from Scratch will reopen in Spring 2019. You can take the course at your own pace. The only deadline is your own drive to start your business!

How long will I have access to the course?

You will have lifetime access to the course.

What if I want a refund?

We are happy to issue a refund within the first 30 days.

What skills will this course teach me?

Smart From Scratch is a course that takes you from idea to real business through idea validation techniques, so the list is pretty extensive. Highlights include: figuring out your niche/interest, workshopping your business idea, engaging your community from a business perspective, pre-launch strategies, and more!

Will I launch a successful product by the end of the course?

The concept for Smart From Scratch is to really guide you to a place where you have the capacity to pre-sell your amazing product or business idea. So, although I can’t guarantee anyone’s success, that is absolutely the intended outcome!

What equipment/tools will I need to complete the course?

Access to a computer, spreadsheet software (Excel or Google Spreadsheets), an email account, and an eager and open mind!

Will I get access to the full course all at once?


What do I do if I need help?

If you need help with something related to the course, please contact pat@smartpassiveincome.com. Thanks!

Can I pay with PayPal?

Yes. On the checkout page under the "Billing Information" section, switch from the Credit Card tab to the PayPal tab. Choose your country and click "Enroll in Course" to be directed to the PayPal checkout.

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