What opportunities are out there for drone pilots?

By | December 6, 2022

On Today's show we discuss all about the opportunities available for drone pilots to seek employment for growing their drone business. Our question for today, from Andy, is about the opportunities that are available in today's market for drone pilots. Andy would like to know if there are specific avenues we recommend to drone pilots.

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Timestamps:
02:50 Today's question is on opportunities for Drone Pilots
04:04 The number 1 opportunity for drone pilots in upcoming months
07:38 Hear about how Dave and John from NY identified opportunities to scale their business
09:27 Has the real estate market become saturated and how drone pilots can grab opportunities with videography and real estate photography
12:08 Utilizing specific data to upsell services to future prospects
13:10 What other untapped markets are available for Drone Pilots?
20:10 Performing cell tower inspections and getting hired for performing cell tower inspects


You're listening to the ask drone you Podcast you ask we answer your drone Questions whether you're here to turn Your passion into profit when you simply Fly for Fun we're a community of Learners and teachers who aspire to Achieve greatness we are Hey everyone welcome to another Well Useful show of ask cadroni my name is Paul my name is Rob hopefully you're Gonna get some information today that Will guide you perhaps if you're kind of Contemplating the direction that you'd Like to go With your enjoyment of drones and maybe Earning some money while enjoying those Drones and uh yeah look forward to Talking about this thankful that you are Spending a few minutes of your day with Us appreciate it every single time Definitely do appreciate it uh it also In this changing economy changing Market It shows how Um Pilots have to rely on relationships Number one but number two be Um adaptable and flexible in an effort To be able to switch track when Necessary uh to ensure they keep getting Jobs so before we get into Today's Show Which is really about current update on Uh drone job opportunities I do want to Say A lot of these opportunities do require You to be able to complete multiple

Types of deliverables things like Orthomosaics which you would get from Autonomous missions mapping missions but Also you know Smooth video and also you Know great photos but taking that to Another step further I really recommend That you check out how our video on how To be a successful drone pilot because The amount of opportunities with cinewup And fly through videos is uh and frankly Off the charts right now so why don't we Go ahead and play that question and We're going to get into some really good Information today thank you again for Joining us and today's question is Brought to you by our props program look We could have just called it droneu Enterprise but instead we wanted to Create an educational platform that Would create professional reliable Operators practicing safety We are the only education platform that Was built to service multiple pilots From any singular drone team or program And provide insights to managers to Ensure that Pilots have caught the bug Make sure that they are field ready Versus just current and be able to Deploy operational systems across a Variety of trainings to create systems Of operations Communications and Administration to ensure your drone Program's success if you are ready to Get the most in-depth chronological

Training program for your drone team or Program you've got to check out the Props flight school powered by droneu Just go to propsflightschool.com Hi Rob hi Paul this is Andy I was Wondering what are the opportunities That exist with drone Pilots right now Thank you Hey Andy good to hear from you thank you For the question I really appreciate it It's great to have you in Colorado a few Weeks ago Um nice to meet you face to face first Time for me I know you've done some Classes with him but anyways appreciate The question and your own opportunities Yeah that's uh it's interesting there Are a lot of drone opportunities I think We're starting to hear of more and more Companies that are adopting it at a Pretty large scale and that means they Need pilots and there's they're finding Difficulty with Um getting those Pilots so where are Some of those opportunities Paul that We're seeing and hearing about well it's A really good question and this question Did kind of permeate from Andy's visit Out here Andy I hope that you had fun Um we typically uh we don't spend Typically a lot of time with our members Or students outside of classes so I'm Glad that uh I'm glad that you came out Here I'm glad you had some fun I

Appreciate you asking this question as Well because you were around during some Of the conversations of of what we are Working on here and trying to provide so Number one greatest opportunity in my Opinion um looking ahead I think is Going to be this new infrastructure bill That came from Congress I'm not I think It already passed I'm not sure but with This infrastructure Bill the need for Drone Pilots to conduct inspections of Roadways Communications utilities Etc is going to be greatly driven by the Government kind of subsidizing this work To be done and so when it comes to these Types of jobs we're talking about Bridge Inspections Road inspections cell tower Inspections and as the country tries to Prepare for a Greener quote-unquote Cleaner future they're trying to create The super grid so having a lot of detail And information on power lines is going To be really really critical for the Deployment of this new super grid so When we talk about these inspections We're kind of talking about visual Inspections you know cameras being used With zoom maybe some thermal stuff but Doubtful more so so we're going to be Seeing lots of implementation of Orthomosaics maps and inspections as a Whole things like the m30t does a great Job of now those types of jobs might not Be recurring Revenue based jobs unless

You're working with like a large-scale Contractor who's already working on Bidding out these opportunities and now Is the time to get in with those Contractors so that your work will be Bid appropriately and you'll be paid Appropriately so I think that's already Opening up the door to a lot more cell Tower inspections we're seeing a lot of Cell tower inspections across a Multitude of drone jobbing sites uh you Know what is it drone Bros Skylink there's a lot that are honestly Offering these jobs and when you think About these jobs be cognizant of how Many of these jobs can you get done in a Day and I would also say if you are Looking for these types of drone jobs It's in your best and interest to make Sure that you put yourself on as many Drone jobbing companies as possible Because you'll find very quickly that Different drone dropping companies pay Different rates and you might be Surprised by the delta in rates between One drone jobbing company and another We're I mean we're seeing Deltas of like 700 difference in a singular job so you Know there are a lot of opportunities Out there and and I would also think of Working with different types of Companies like software companies like People like optelos who we know are Looking at hiring drone pilots and

Service providers all the time to get What they need completed so look outside The box Don't Be Afraid right now in This holiday time I think it's in your Best interest to make a plan write out You know where you want to put your Business as a listing on these drone Jobbing companies working on SEO for Your Regional or local based company and Then working on relationships as a whole I would say don't skimp out on On touch points on reaching out to People that you know well and just you Know wishing them a happy holiday or Sparking that conversation because in Today's day and age with such a large Amount of division and you know a large Amount of just kind of riffraff going on These personal relationships are going To be The Driver of your business and Are going to be imperative if the market Has a significant downturn so 100 you Know it makes me think of Dave and John Up in Upstate New York And Dave in particular Is just a go-getter right and they are Super busy because they have done plenty Of jobs through some of the job Boards or the job providing Services Right and they've used that as an Opportunity to learn new skills And to meet people And it has really paid off and I I just

Appreciate Dave's perspective on all That and how he'll he'll tell you don't Say to no to anything and I wouldn't Necessarily give that advice to Everybody I think that Dave can handle That yeah he's uh he's a pretty awesome Dude not that you all aren't awesome but Um my point is there's a tremendous Amount of opportunity if you get out There and do it so they've been doing Um a lot of solar stuff which Glenn has Done as well they've been doing some Inspections they actually got involved In some of the delivery testing of bvlos Stuff they've done some wind turbine Inspections they've done a lot of stuff And and they stay busy they stay really Busy So the opportunity is out there I know That we're hearing from some folks that Are looking for pilots in the AG space And this is a group that wants to Actually provide the Drone Um hopefully we'll have more information For you on that to come depending on how It goes with them but there's Opportunities like that and there's Always the traditional DSP opportunities Out there I think there's some you know There's still opportunities in real Estate I think the adoption is still out There as sort of low-hanging fruit if You want to get out there and compete in That world that actually brings up a

Really good question because the real Estate market has slowed down Significantly Um and you know as I think about it the Total volume of Real Estate jobs might Be lower but the depth of those jobs Might be higher meaning that these Realtors need more and more to garnish Attention for a particular listing yeah I might actually push back that it's That the volume is going to be lower for A couple of reasons one it's going to be Harder to sell something and so they Might have more need for your services You might be better able to sell your Value because they can't just slap the House on the MLS and it sells like that Although around here that's still kind Of happening but because I look every Day but anyways and number two is the Number of houses going on the market is Going to continue to increase and it Almost has to because it got so low Inventory got so low and that's by the Way part of what drove up real estate Prices that and all the money in the System but I think you're going to see a Lot more volume of homes or inventory of Homes on the market so the competition Is going to be higher so as it Transitions to a buyer's market sellers Are going to have to do more to sell Their house and so I think for those two Reasons you could actually perhaps

Ironic likely see more opportunity in The real estate videography space well And you know I think an important Point Too is that if a realtor wants to sell a Particular home at a given value that The perception of said value can Honestly be palpable in media meaning That like a lot of Realtors are Realizing that they can't just take IPhone pictures of their homes and Expect the perception to be high right They've got to get different types of Media Etc and this is where I think those Fly-through videos have a huge Opportunity as well I mean we're seeing Pilots just murder the game with these Fly through videos and no offense to Certain drone manufacturers but the People who are doing these jobs they are Not flying the DJI Avada they are flying True cinewipe drones and their ability To like do these One-Shot takes like What we did with Isotopes is just Absolutely incredible and they're seeing A huge uptick now so if you know this Goes to show that if you've got the Skills to do real estate but you can Also do cinewup then your price point Could literally double compared to the Competition so to Rob's point it's going To be harder to sell which might Actually be a greater opportunity for You but here's the thing Pilots you've

Got to have that system down so that When you're shooting these homes it's as Fast and efficient as it possibly can be Yeah and I would also if you're in that Space or you want to get into that space And you start to do work there keep Track of the data I mean specific data In terms of once for example your Cineworld video is released by the Realtor how long does it take to sell And and track that data because the more That data you have the more you're going To be able to sell down the road is There a way in MLS to like Auto email You once a particular listing sells Um I think if you yes okay so there's Multiple you could have like an Autonomous trigger that then yeah I mean You can use any of the services was it Zillow redfan realtor.com you can all You can do that on all of them like you Don't even need the MLS access or help From the realtor you can get all that Done in the regular Um platforms gotcha gotcha Um I think the other opportunities that Are big Um obviously are going to be you know We've talked about utilities cell tower Inspections power line inspections we've Talked a little bit about real estate Um in all honesty I think the other big Opportunities are going to be for Um certain types of jobs that maybe

Drone Pilots haven't thought about you Know we've talked about solar Inspections and how solar inspections And kind of con construction Progressions are one of the best mrr or Monthly recurring Revenue jobs that you Can go out and get but I think that There's a couple of tapped markets that I wanted to mention on this show so as Many of you know we worked with Lucid Drone Technologies they're out of North Carolina they created a drone that Actually cleans buildings because to Clean any given building let's say you Know eight to 12 stories could be Anywhere between 75 and 85 000 and with The Lucid C1 cleaning drone No one needs to go up on the sides of These buildings now that is a great Market to tap I would recommend that if You are able and ready to fly Large-scale drones I mean we're talking Big big drones although they've designed It really well so that it flies nicely Oh I couldn't agree more they've made it As convenient as possible right Um so if you are looking for that type Of industrial work which I think is only Going to increase then you might want to Reach out to Lucid drone Technologies And see if there are any opportunities Available for you but beyond that with That lucid cleaning drone let's say that If you're already in the Solar

Inspection market then you could be Cleaning solar panels I did a big deep Dive on like what is the actual Opportunity and people are paying Anywhere from 18 to 25 dollars per panel To have their solar panels cleaned I'm Talking about residential here and if You think about it it's very very easy To go out and get these jobs because all You have to do is go to the County Website look at everyone who's had Gotten a permit to install solar panels You can go to those homes and provide Like a little brochure that says you Know the average solar panels reduce Efficiency by X number of percent over X Period of time and we can clean those Panels for you and increase efficiency And even provide a report for you so That you see what your efficiency was to Start and then what it was after we Cleaned it so now you're charging them To do a solar inspection to use Raptor Maps and then you charge them to clean It so that way it's also a very easy Dollarized value sale I haven't seen Anyone do this yet by the way um this Was just something that I saw a huge Opportunity here and consulted with a Friend to help him understand that value Even talked about it with lucid and to Clean these solar panels is actually Really really easy you only need Distilled water it's practically

Purified water so Um you know you you attach your pump to Your drone fly your drone clean the Panels it does not take very long and Voila then you can run another little Thermal map with your drone and you can Showcase the deviation or Delta and uh And you can literally show your client This is the dollarized impact that I Have had on you I would even recommend Setting up packages to go clean those Panels biannually annually quarterly Whatever you believe you can sell which I do think it comes down to your ability To sell on how frequently you're going To go clean those panels so yeah it Usually does so I didn't know about well I mean it makes sense I'm just really Really curious on the efficiency Delta Between dirty and clean well think about It I mean yeah I'm just yeah curious uh What I read was something that like Within a year or two especially in high Desert areas where you have a lot of Dust dust and then rain and I mean look At your car after you clean it and then There's one little rainstorm yeah and That's a perfect example you know so if There's anything inhibiting the Sun from Getting to these panels to convert into Energy or as Trent likes to uh put it uh Foss what does he call it fossilized or I forget what he says is the term is Like fossilized carbon or or something

Like that anyway long story short is it Can get bad quickly yeah so and if They're not running at full efficiency They're going to see it in their power Bill and with raptor maps you can Literally measure that out and say hey This is how much you're losing every Single month this is what it's costing You this is what it cost me in it to Clean them and to do this in eight Months time or six months time or four Months time you've already paid for Um yeah look twenty percent of their Energy out that's just a quick Google Solar energy power Association notes That dirty solar panels can lose 20 of Their energy output yeah that's it could Even be 25 you add that up over a year That's substantial significant yep so It's very easy to create that formula For that dollarized value to sell to a Client so so are the I wonder like the Whole Tesla grid and solar stuff that They're doing they must have people out There doing this and cleaning them That's that's significant actually no no So well I know we trained a lot of the Tesla Pilots for that exact reason or Not for cleaning but for inspections and And honestly I'm not seeing this really A lot it's the older style of work and This goes into what what uh Cody Sanchez Says all over Instagram you want to buy Boring businesses and then modernize

Them and automate them you buy a Cleaning company or partner with someone For a cleaning company and then you go Out and do you know all these jobs via Drone instead of you know a person Physically doing it and you can Revolutionize that business and the Profit margins too so absolutely yeah For sure Um it makes me think too of when I took Emily out to California Labor Day Weekend driving out of Vegas to the South There is a massive I didn't know that Was out there I'm sure you've seen that Yeah yeah solar array and then it has The big tower in the middle and almost Looks dystopian kind of it totally does Yeah it's really wild so I mean I think By the way there's a lot more solar Fields out there than we realize because They're always in these obscure places That people don't go generally But they've got to be clean too Especially out there where there's just Nothing but dust yeah so really Interesting opportunity there yeah Totally interesting so Um let's see we've talked about Utilities we've talked about solar we've Talked about cleaning Um honestly Seeing more and more drone work in the Engineering space in the geospatial

Space Um I mean I know a lot of people who've Been around for a while these veteran Pilots feel like the industry has Matured and I believe it has matured but I don't think it's hit its peak and it's Nowhere close yeah so Um and so talk a little bit more about The opportunity as you see it in the Cell tower inspections maybe in a little Bit more depth I mean they are Absolutely using drones to do the Inspections the question is who are they Hiring or who are they using to do those Inspections well and we've seen you know Um we've seen it go both ways where Companies are converting their Tower Inspectors into drone pilots and we have Also seen companies go out and hire Drone Pilots to do these inspections I Mean they need it could be the same Company that does both yeah we've seen That too Um and you know on these cell towers They are literally looking for which Antennas are set up at what Azimuth to Be able to discern true coverage and Bandwidth and create an inventory of What is actually on these towers we're Seeing a couple of companies really Create amazing data products too uh to Essentially turn cell phone towers into Like Zillow where you've got an Aggregation of all these towers

And you are able to discern what real Estate is available on those Towers so Um I think it's a huge opportunity Towers pay well they're simple and if You ever need help Selling yourself a lot of these tower Inspection companies do use automated Missions but they need Pilots that can Fly these missions when automation Doesn't work which actually happens more Frequently than you would believe so Having the right skills the ability to Fly orbits and do all that fly in close Proximity it's going to have a a massive Amount of value And you know in as these companies also Get more specific in their acquisition Styles drones like the m30t with that Laser range finder make it so much Easier to get the right data because They're like hey your radius needs to be 65 feet you know you don't have to rely On GPS you turn on the Laser Rangefinder Pinpoint it at the tower now you know Exactly how far away you are yeah very Interesting but so some opportunity There for sure huge opportunity there Um you know I think though in trying to Discuss the opportunities the mrr I Think it's also important to discuss Opportunities that might be fading away In the current economic environment so For example I've already seen statistics From the National Association of

Advertisers that advertising Expenditures are down like double digits Like enormous maybe even like two or Three Um what is it called two or three Um Standard deviations uh different from Normal which is significant so if you're Doing a lot of small business uh media For the holidays and whatnot have a plan For after the holidays because I think We're gonna see this downward Regressional Trend continue with Advertising and if you're doing a lot of Heavy Advertising based work you know it May you may run into trouble and I want I would like to give you the warning Right now so that you can have time to Plan and uh and do what you need to so Frankly Speaking there's a lot of Opportunity out there and it really Comes down to your ability to create Relationships your ability to have good SEO and your willingness to uh call People and talk to them go to events and Showcase your worth so all that to be Said I'm very grateful for you guys Today don't forget to watch out to watch That video how to be a successful a Drone pilot and if you're not a drone Member we have classes on most of these Jobs uh construction progression reports Cell tower inspections and we're Actually in the middle right now of

Updating the cell tower inspections Course and adding some additional Courses as well so that said uh Appreciate all of you thank you very Much thank you for being with us Um those of you who have been with us For a little while and those of you who Have been with us for a very long time Thank you hope you guys have a great Thanksgiving and don't forget to keep Flying you know gamify your practice Have fun with it and we look forward to Seeing you in the next show as always my Name is Paul my name is Rob this is ask Droneo Foreign [Music]