How long until an R portfolio makes money?

October 26, 2016

(This article was first published on R –, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

A reader just asked me a fascinating question:

Could you give a rough estimate of how much time you had to invest until your portfolio started to show a nice return of investment?

To answer this question we’ll need to subtract a start date from an end date. However, these dates are a bit tricky to pick.

The Start Date

There are two possible start dates.

The first date is 2/14. That’s when I published my first package on CRAN. It makes sense to use this date because it’s a key point on my journey of building an R Portfolio. The problem with this date is that I had a full time job at the time, and wasn’t thinking about monetizing my R projects at all.

The second date is 3/15. That’s when I left my full time job and created my own website. At this point I wasn’t sure if it would be possible to make money directly from an R portfolio, but I was interested in finding out.

The End Date

This date is much easier to pinpoint. 12/15 stands out because it’s when I successfully launched my first online course. An important point is that the course was self-published. It’s hard to overstate the impact that launching that course had.

The Short Answer

So the answer to your question is either 1 year and 10 months or 9 months, depending on which start date you want to use.

The Long Answer

I did not know that selling a course would have such a big impact. Whichever start date you use, I didn’t have this as my goal at the time. I was moving forward in fits and starts, but not towards this destination. I just didn’t know better.

If you’re just starting out with trying to monetize your R Portfolio, I recommend that you set self-publishing an information product as a goal. It can be a book or a course. Learn from my experience!

Self-publishing is a skill, just like anything else. Here are two books that helped me learn how to do it:

And if you’d like me to help you with launching your first book or course, join my membership site.

The post How long until an R portfolio makes money? appeared first on

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