Is Smart Passive Income a Scam? Read This Before You Buy.

Smart Passive Income is a program/website I’ve been wanting to check out more in-depth, and review for a long time to see if it’s a scam. 

It is not and Pat Flynn, the creator of this place has done a great job not just with what he teaches, but with the plethora of free material he offers throughout this program. Yet as someone who also makes an online income, would I recommend Pat’s program?

Well I have another option, one which in my personal opinion pretty much teaches everything Pat could in his program, but for way less.

In this review of Smart Passive Income, I’m going to explain what you will learn from Pat’s program and compare it to the alternative that’s helped me actually make a passive income online personally.

Quick report of Smart Passive Income:

smart passive income review screenshot

Creator: Pat Flynn.

Price: There are 5 courses overall, 2 of which are free. Here is a list of them:

  • The Will it Fly Companion Course: Free.
  • Build Your Own Brand: Free.
  • Smart from Scratch: $247.
  • Power Up Podcasting: $799.
  • 1 2 3 affiliate marketing: $697.

There’s also a few other free courses that talk about affiliate marketing, email list building and blogging, and those are free tips too.

What you learn: There’s various ways to make money online and Pat teaches you some of the most popular ways to do it through his podcast, his courses and free content. I’ll explain each one further below.

Overall Rating: 6 out of 10 stars.

Pat is legit and I certainly value his training and expertise, but the fact that his courses are divided up into sections and topics, most of which cost a lot, may make it more difficult for beginners to choose where to start and the prices involved in some of the courses are a bit high…

This is why I am recommending a program that encapsulates pretty much everything Pat teaches into 1, free to try course that’s actually made me a passive income personally (and many others):

smart passive income alternative

A review of the courses in Smart Passive Income:

If you visit Pat’s site, all the links and options to check out the courses and podcasts could be overwhelming. Where do you start if you’re a beginner?

Well Pat actually has a “start here” link which takes you to a page where he helps you understand how to build an income online through the different options available out there. Some of these options take you to free videos where he talks about making money online, some take you to his podcasts and some take you through to other programs you will have to buy.

In my personal case, if you are a beginner, I have my own simple tutorial on making money online here where you can start and learn how to generate income online.

But I’d like to clarify Pat’s site in case you are interested in checking it out and buying one or more of his programs:

There is a TON of free content provided on Pat’s site which revolves around the following topics:

1) Email marketing.

He explains the profit potential of selling stuff to people through email by first collecting the email list and then slowly working sales angles. 

2) Affiliate marketing.

He explains what this process is and how you can make money selling products you don’t own, online. He also provides a free eBook for this. By the way, affiliate marketing is my MAIN generator of a passive online income.

3) Podcasting.

He runs a podcast series and also has a paid course on starting your own podcast “empire”. 

4) Blogging.

Blogging is a big part of making money online and it’s something I do (combined with affiliate marketing), but Pat also teaches his way of doing it.

Within these topics, you get a lot of free content from Pat, which is good, but Pat is also trying to make money from this, so eventually you do have the option to buy his more comprehensive courses on these subjects and I listed the prices of those courses above.

Here is what they look like:

smart passive income courses

Who is Pat Flynn and are his courses legit?

In case you don’t know who Pat Flynn is, he’s a very successful online marketer who has built his name by making money online in many different ways and then creating his own site where he teaches the same methods. The many crosses at least $100,000 a month. 

who is patt flynn

As for whether or not his courses are legit, I’ve already said that they are.

The good news is that in Pat’s website, you can get an inside look into the titles of the lessons of each course that are provided.

There are 5 main ones:

1) Will it Fly? Free.

In this course, you learn to brainstorm business ideas and actually filter out which ones will actually “fly” as in work. There are 2 preview lessons once you start and about 9 chapters worth of content where you basically work through ideas you have.

Speaking from experience in having many ideas which have worked for me in making money and many which have not, I know that one of the keys is picking a problem subject that people have and that I can offer them a way to fix. Those generally bring in enthusiastic clients and sales for me. So there’s a little tip for you guys 🙂

2) Build Your Own Brand. Free

In this course, you learn to make a website and promote yourself. Pat runs you through the process, step-by-step and has you set up your first website.

This is also one of those areas where I can lend my own free experience in to help you decide. I’ve made websites and build my brands over the years and it’s not as difficult as you may believe.

As long as you brand your name or website in a manner which targets people who have problems (what I said in the Will it Fly Strategy part), you’ll be able to become a problem solver and build your reputation and clients. 

3) Smart From Scratch. $247.

In this course, you learn to basically take action from the idea stage you have (the Will it Fly part) and actually start building an online business. A lot of the course here (and you can see it yourself) involves picking niches, building the site, getting an email list up and running and basically reaching that first sale.

I looked through the course summaries and most of it is good in my opinion, but it is pretty expensive. The alternative course (Wealthy Affiliate) I suggest people try for free actually teaches MANY of these same concepts in a manner of 10 lessons, all of which are free to check out. Learn more about Wealthy Affiliate here.

You also learn to build an online business through the same concepts (niche marketing).

4) Power up Podcasting. $799.

This is the most expensive of all the courses in Pat’s program, and it’s the one I’m least familiar with considering I don’t really do podcasting (yet), but I have friends who do (one of them actually had Pat on his podcast once) and I get offers from that from time to time and I have a little bit of experience on how this works.

Podcasting is indeed a great way to get your voice and brand heard out there and a great way to build your online business and in this course, Pat runs you through the same blueprint he follows on things like what to buy, how to create the podcast and attract loyal customers/visitors. And if you didn’t already know, Pat also runs his own, free podcast you can check out anytime.

5) 1 2 3 Affiliate Marketing. $697.

Affiliate marketing is my strongest area of expertise in making money online and when it comes to how Pat teaches it, it’s mainly through email marketing. You learn to collect an email list through a website or blog, get leads, and pitch those leads affiliate products and programs you get commissions from, based on what I have seen on his page.

It’s definitely a doable plan but my advice isn’t to go that route. My advice is to start with the niche, grow an audience through a website, then promote to them the products and/or collect an email list and then go from there. This is a plan that actually costs less money up front and even if you screw up, the loss is not a big deal, but the email marketing route isn’t as easy as it seems. 

Either way, while I like Pat’s approach, I still think my program’s option is safer, cheaper and better for MOST beginners:

Final Rating: Smart Passive Income.

Green Flag (Legit).

6 out of 10 stars. I definitely recommend Pat’s free content to everyone, but in terms of taking action, while his program is very good, I think my option would be better for most people because it’s cheaper and what they teach is an all in one approach blueprint, and it’s not divided up into different topics and courses like Pat’s program is, all whilst being cheaper to check out and try in the process:

My final thoughts: 

I’m sure most of Pat’s listeners and/or those researching and thinking of joining his program are probably not ready to put in a lot of money. I was certainly in that spot when I started in this business but it was through my recommended program that I was able to create my own passive online income and that program basically taught me most if not everything that Pat teaches.

The differences are:

1) I started for very little and actually today that same program is free to try.

2) I had HUGE support and coaching through the process. Now I am actually a coach through that program and help others reach the same success.

3) The material I learned was almost identical to Pat’s teachings, but I believe it’s actually more comprehensive.

Now when I read what Pat teaches people, it all resonates nearly 100% with me and I know exactly how to do most of what Pat teaches, but in my case, I didn’t need to pay so much to learn it.

So overall, like I’ve said numerous times, Smart Passive Income and Pat Flynn are totally legitimate. There is nothing I find that is “scammy” about him or his program, but finance wise and content wise, my recommended program wins on both fronts and will teach you to make your own passive income online and there’s plenty of proof to show that:

Thank you for reading my review of Smart Passive Income. If there are ANY questions about this program, Pat or what I explained in this article, please ask me below folks 🙂

12 thoughts on “Is Smart Passive Income a Scam? Read This Before You Buy.”

  1. Anytime I see an offer for a program on affiliate marketing, especially for hundreds of dollars I cringe a little bit. Although Pat Flynn seems legit, his price of $697 dollars for a marketing course is not. Why spend a what could be a mortgage payment or rent on something that you can get for free to test out and still pay less if you join? I am talking about Wealthy Affiliate where the cost per month is about the same as a dinner for two night out at an average restaurant.

    Even with that being said, I think Pat’s will it fly course sounds great. I am an entrepreneur with many new ideas and I would love to have a “testing ground” to see which are viable. Thanks for cover this. I will have to visit Pat’s website.

    • Hi Julian, to be honest, I would actually advise going to Wealthy Affiliate with that question since you are clearly a member there already. I’d personally be happy to take a look at your business ideas and see how they could turn out if you made an online business through them. This would save you a lot of money and still give you accurate responses.

  2. I have to say you have done a very nice job of comparing these 2 companies. I like the way you don’t tear Pat down. He’s not a bad guy. He just doesn’t have the better product. 

    Now Wealthy Affiliate, that is the company to associate with. It is exactly as you say. And the training is perfectly set in order to teach and walk you through each step. It just amazes me how any 2 people could have done such an incredible job of setting up a company.

    • People have their own tastes and creative ways to set up a business Laura. Knowing what I know about Pat’s program and how he organized it, it reminded me a program called Internet Marketing Mastery, where Pat happened to learn his stuff from.

      I found that program to be missing a lot of important things such as a community, more images, more videos and all that and I find Pat’s site kind of reflects the stuff I saw in the that program. Again, I’m not putting Pat down, he has a legit program, but with Wealthy Affiliate, people have more chances of getting success in this business, in my personal opinion (and the fact that I’ve made money through them for years).

  3. Before entering Wealthy Affiliate, Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income was one of my choices. It is true that he is offering useful information specially if you’re “new” to the business, you can really benefit from what he teaches.

    But…there’s a “price” to pay to get all that. I found Wealthy Affiliate, and so far I’m enjoying it, and the best thing about it is, I learn new things everyday.

    I’m glad to find you in WA and you as a member for 11 years (got the info from one of your other articles). How long did it take for you to have your very first earnings?

    • Well I have some cases where money was made within a few minutes of starting a campaign, but that was in a situation where I paid for ads on Bing and got traffic right away. I did get that training from WA.

      Most people who do the training there start with getting traffic for free and that is actually a longer, but more profitable process, taking perhaps a few weeks to a few months. 

  4. Hello, 

    I have been before to this site and I have also heard his videos on YouTube. I am into personal development so his materials appeal to me. I haven’t tried his paid courses, so I can’t talk about them, but I am a premium member of Wealthy Affiliate since 2 years. I have to say that the training works and that I have made $50 this month, and I have also made $100. 

  5. Hi Vitaliy,

    I always love reading your articles. You can feel your experience and authenticity in your writing. Regarding Pat Flynn and his courses…

    I really enjoy Pat Flynn. I’m a subscriber on his YouTube channel and for awhile, I was on his email list. As you said, he gives a lot of great content for free. Like you, I’d recommend anyone who wants to start an online business to check out his blog, podcast, and Youtube videos because he has some great advice there.

    I can’t speak much on his paid programs because I haven’t purchased any of them. Since I tried the training at Wealthy Affiliate, I’ve gotten so many things to implement, and I’ve been getting returns (monetary returns) from applying the training from there. I really haven’t needed any additional training.

    Before trying Wealthy Affiliate, it always seemed like I bought a fragment of information, but none of it was enough to start an online business. WA changed that.

    I can’t say I’ve reached the million dollar sales mark (as you have), but I’m on my way. Another great review!

    • Hi Tiffany, always great to hear from you and I’m glad you enjoy my content. Since you are already growing and seeing results from Wealthy Affiliate, I’d keep focusing on that. You will find that with more success and more experience, your ideas to scale and grow will increase and this will lead you to grow your online business further.

  6. I’ve known of Pat Flynn for a long time now and I do believe he provides a fair bit of value in his free material and the fact that he is uber successful adds a lot of credibility to his words. 

    I do however agree that the price for the last 3 products are quite expensive so unless you have cash to spare or if you just want to support Pat while learning something new, I see why you aren’t overly keen on recommending it over other programs. I’ll probably pass it for now as well.

    • The question about whether or not Pat’s program is worth it is better answered if you look for alternatives and I have recommended the best one 🙂


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