Case Study

Music Teacher to full-time thriving online guitar educator

Ángel Candelaria

Based in San Antonio, Texas

Membership model

Online courses and membership with monthly, quarterly, & annual payment options

Integrations

ThriveCart, MailerLite, LearnDash, and Zapier.

Membership sites

The membership sites

Cursos de Guitarra Pro

Ángel Candelaria is a career music teacher for Spanish-speaking students. He launched his first online education company, Cursos de Guitarra Pro, in May 2018, to train guitar students for music ministry.

Músico Knowmada


His second membership site, Músico Knowmada, was built for musicians who want to learn how to teach guitar and need coaching to develop an online teaching platform for themselves.

Escritor Knowmada

His wife, Yaritza Coruyo, is an author who also has a membership site called Escritor Knowmada, which is dedicated to helping writers get published.

From teacher, to side hustle, to entrepreneur

Before starting a full-time online business, Ángel was a regular music teacher in Puerto Rico. He spent 12 years teaching at a public elementary school, followed by 5 years at a specialized music school.

Throughout his teaching career, Ángel always wanted to innovate more than the curricula allowed. “When you work for others, sometimes you get your hands tied,” he said.

Ángel eventually launched a side hustle in 2012 to teach music lessons on his own terms — using his own methods. He launched ebooks on Amazon, started an online blog, and even created a YouTube channel dedicated to teaching guitar.

Ángel began to learn a lot about online marketing through online communities like La Tribo, which offered forums for conversation, courses, and a DIY marketing program. Ángel became a recognized voice and moderator within that online community, eventually even traveling to live events they hosted in Spain.

Meeting the team behind La Tribo made him realize launching an online business might be possible for him as well. That same year, after returning to Puerto Rico from the conference, Hurricane Maria made landfall and devastated Puerto Rico. Fortunately, Ángel and his family were safe. But the storm really got him thinking about what he wanted to do in his life.

That was another big turning point. Life is short. How much time do we really have? I decided I couldn’t keep letting time pass by without doing anything — that’s when we moved to Florida and I quit my job as a guitar teacher.

– Ángel

Ángel started his online business in Florida with the help of a business mentor he’d met at the conference.

To get his guitar education business off the ground, Ángel decided to create a membership website to help him engage with students and provide better control over the music content he was sharing.

The challenge

BYOP (payment provider)

At first, Ángel used a different membership plugin to get his membership site off the ground. But he quickly bumped into a few challenges, most notably around payments.

As an avid ThriveCart user, he found that he had to create complex work-arounds to integrate with his plugin, MemberPress. Even for a guy who is really comfortable with tech like Ángel, these patches just weren’t cutting it — meaning he had to spend a lot of manual time keeping his payments and member changes up to date.

The ThriveCart integration was awful with the other membership plugin. I had to connect through a third plugin called Application Passwords, authorize the integration — it was a mess. It gave me so many problems.

– Ángel

Enter WishList Member

Gaining more control through integrations

WishList Member has a plugin for everything you can think of and offers flexibility and freedom.

– Ángel

Then Ángel discovered WishList Member. After learning more about what they offered, he switched membership sites in February 2020.

“The main thing that made me switch was customer service. The other membership sites seemed a little bit unresponsive. They gave partial replies or said ‘that has nothing to do with our plugin, you have to contact ThriveCart.’ With WishList Member, Ángel experienced immediate support. “Their support has been awesome so far. Tracy is so approachable. He’s not the CEO who hides behind the chair. I like that about him.”

I think my favorite thing about WishList Member right now is its balance of features. It offers a lot of features but is super simple to handle. WishList Member also has a lot of integrations and they’re very active in development. For me that’s very important

– Ángel

WishList Member provided Ángel more control over his membership sites, allowing him to integrate seamlessly to tools like ThriveCart and LearnDash to build a better membership experience for himself and his students.

“I feel like I’m covered for now and a long future to come. I would recommend WishList Member to others using WordPress for their membership site.”

Today, Ángel and his wife Yaritza run their growing membership sites from sunny San Antonio, Texas.

To learn more about WishList Member, check out: