Can You Grow and Scale Your Drone Business with a DJI Mavic Air 2?
We are hey everyone and welcome to another interesting episode of ask drone. You, you know were grateful that to have you here. As always, we like to help you build confidence and gain skills to pay the bills thats. What drone? U is all about, but uh weve got an interesting question today regarding kind of commercially viable drones, but specific to the mavic air 2, which is very interesting. Considering we just had our pre podcast walk and met a listener out on flying out at the field. Hop up and uh its funny because he literally brought this issue up before we heard this question for today and uh very interesting. The deviation uh between uh opinions on this one so yeah it is yeah perspective and and thats thats, fine theres. Never one right answer! Right, you know so true that um, but anyway, todays show is brought to you by the drone you community, thank you to everyone who has been a part of the drone you membership and the community as a whole friendly reminder to check out the new classes. Remember last year we launched that solar inspection class weve got the commercial roof inspection class. Now you know, weve got a whole new set of dont crash courses, and the operations course was updated as well, and weve got some big stuff on the horizon, but im not going to talk about it because uh, i might be speaking a little too soon.
So good morning guys, my name is gary. I live in new york im a new drum pilot im, a part 107 certified, i own a dji mavic air 2 and i recently started looking for jobs and for psychic to practice. With my drone, i noticed that my drone, the dji mavic air 2 doesnt qualify for almost all the job out there. Today they are looking for more advanced runs and i wonder if you guys think i should be getting a new drone or maybe looking into different fields to practice with my drone. Thank you guys for the great information you guys provide to us im, a new pilot, so any advice, any tips will be helpful. Thank you guys. Thank you gary. I love getting calls from new pilots such as yourself, and you just come on its kind of raw help me. This is what im dealing with and if theres any way we can help you. We absolutely will, but it is interesting, like you said, pre question the just how the perspective changes uh, the persons, the pilots perspective, changes the outlook on the drone theyre using because we have two like bipolar perspectives well and lets elaborate on that. What did you hear from uh bob? That was really his name uh out on the field today when he was kind of talking, because he even said you know, ive watched a lot of your shows and i feel like i disagree with you on something he didnt illustrate exactly what that was when i Asked him, but i think it was you know what kind of drone you really need so yeah.
So i think what he was getting at is that he said so hes an older gentleman, a retired gentleman, and he was just sitting there flying in the park having having a good time flying his drone. He did say he just passed his part 107 and interestingly, he did it with uh youtube videos which i thought was pretty cool and he uh. He said that hes gotten a couple of jobs, people that want him to do stuff for them, and he said i wasnt even looking for that, but its kind of cool, because i can fly my drone and then i can do some jobs and i can pay For this drone – and we were asking about how he could use if he thought the mavic air 2 was a good option for it. He said yeah. I think anything that im being asked to do. I have no problems doing this using this drone 4.. One thing to point out with him is that hes uh hes a commercial photographer or was, and so he understands sensors and how all of that works, and so he knows what he can get out of this particular sensor. And so i think he was more comfortable with that yeah, and i mean you know kind of to uh to rebuke that or refute that. Excuse me, i said: well, you know rob when you start getting a lot of jobs and you start getting the heavier hitting jobs.
You dont have all that time to do a significant amount of editing when you can just adjust the aperture and get just the right shot. Throw your stuff in lightroom. Have these preset formulas maybe do a few adjustments, but when you really become successful, you really have to focus on scalability, which is making efficient systems to service multiple clients to be able to enjoy the creative freedom that you have, while still uh. You know getting the job done and i think you know bob was saying his intention wasnt to really use it too much other than to pay off the vehicle, whereas this caller is in a very different position where hes looking for more technical based jobs. These are recurring revenue, jobs and hes being told you know that little toy is not going to do it. You know yeah its interesting that you bring up when you become successful and so a little bit more background about what paul just said is that bob out on the field said that he uh he didnt mind that it didnt have some of the flexibility in the Settings and so forth because he said he can use a raw photo and do a lot with it and so pauls saying yeah. But you cant do that at scale, because theres, just not enough time in the day and so defining success is probably very different for paul i mean for bob sorry than it is for gary in new york, so thats a really interesting thing to keep to consider Here and not only that, but i think we have to consider that these people are on two different parts of the timeline.
As far as becoming a commercial pilot, where hes the caller seems to be more advanced and he wants to be anyways yeah and is – is taking the necessary precautions and steps to get there, whereas bob is a more uh, i would say laws. I fair, if that i think, is a good way to explain it having fun with it. He even called it a toy and he knew exactly what he was doing when he said that yeah 100, 100 yeah and uh it just its just really interesting, uh rob because again one of the hardest lessons that i have learned in being in business with you And this is not uh. This is nothing about you, but its scalability, because we all have this idea. When we get into business that oh, we just need more jobs, we just need more jobs. We just need more jobs, thats. How were going to get more money and were going to make more money in the drone world? Thats, not the case thats, not really the case you youve got to be thinking about how to scale the systems to reduce the time of onboarding. Clients reduce the time of serving the clients after the job and then reduce the time of keeping those clients engaged in hopes of building recurring revenue, meaning getting more jobs. And i think you know, and glenn talked about this in his interview and hes, like the biggest problem that i think drone pilots have getting into this.
Is they do not think about how hard the hustle is in getting jobs and why its so important to focus on jobs that are recurring revenue, meaning youre, youre, inspecting solar panels once a month, youre doing cell tower inspections once a month, youre doing commercial roof inspections? Every time theres a hail storm, you know and thats become pretty predictable at this point, and so you know that said, i think you have two completely different mindsets here. You got the laissez faire and then you got the guy whos, like hey im, building a business with this thing and im serious about it and im learning that maybe this aircraft doesnt have what i need to be able to do these jobs, and i think he Is foreshadowing the potential uh struggle that he may face in the hustle and hustling is hard its not for any for its, not for everyone. In fact, i was just thinking last night about how much i used to question myself in selling uh affleck. I used to work for affleck and uh. You know it was when my regional manager was like paul people buy insurance every single day of the year because they want to protect themselves its a hedge against. You know something its a life yeah its a fear based decision, its an easy sell. You dont need to be questioning yourself. You just need to explain why this is useful when it will be useful and manage expectations, and i won every single aflac sales award that you could win in the first three months of being an affleck salesperson, and so so what youre saying is that he should Go become an aflac salesperson.
Honestly, i asked one of my old seems like a great training group. I asked my old regional manager if he would do a sales class for us, but you know we just did that sales class virtually and uh ive got some students asking for one more bonus session which im gon na finally get on the calendar. Michael im, sorry its taken so long, but that said i mean like there is: there is autonomous sales like building systems for your business, to do as much as you can, but then theres, the in person sales when youre, actually talking to someone and youre closing a Deal and thats what aflac does so well? Is they teach you how to take objections and turn them into objectives right? Because, honestly, when someone has an objection, its just because they have a further clarifying question to better understand, whats going on to make a more educated decision – and that is actually a positive thing right, not a negative thing, so you really have to kind of change. Your mindset to be successful at the hustle, but then again when youre going after these scalable recurring revenue jobs, it becomes a lot easier to hustle. Well. The last thing you want to garys question is to go through that hustle work your tail off and get to the end of the road where you have an opportunity and then oops you dont have the right equipment yeah, because that totally changes your algorithm as to Whether thats a good job for you in terms of how much investment is it going to take right and then can you keep doing that and so yeah i mean, i think, youre going about it right in terms of thinking this through.
I do kind of wonder so he asked the question: should i just buy a new drone? Well, and so you know when we were talking about this in pre show. I was like well without really understanding the types of jobs that hes going after its really hard to answer this question, and i think the best answer is to give him kind of a tiered approach, because you know were working right now on a power line. Inspection class were working on a couple. Other inspection based classes dont want to give that away for the competitors, but that said, what were realizing is there really is a uh tiers of different drones to solve different problems, and with that said, you know uh we are seeing and im. I love this rob. I i just wrote the article about how the mavic 2 enterprise dual advanced. You know takes literally the cost of going into business for solar inspections down by two thirds yeah. You know, and that drone has a zoomable camera its. You know 48 megapixels its, not a huge sensor, but i will say we ran some mapping testing missions for the dont crash course. On that drone and im stunned at the quality. I mean really stunned at the quality. It does not for whatever reason, pix and a few other programs dont like the obliques out of that camera, but the double grids, work, phenomenally well, um and all that to be said.
I think that if we were to say heres, the first tier of drone that you can probably get the most out of this is again specific to kind of inspection work right if it werent inspection work. If it was more like mapping and kind of creative id be like look, go buy a phantom, you know done deal, but i think were looking at something more than just a phantom here. So my first tier, i would say, is the mavic 2 enterprise dual advanced and for two reasons: one low barrier to entry. Two maintenance costs are very low, youre looking at 189 for a new battery, not 1400 for an m300 set of tb60s like holy cow, and how does dji get away with that anyway, uh and then you know, youve got a zoomable camera and you have a phenomenal Thermal sensor as well, so, if youre getting into doing some more commercial base work that needs to utilize thermal, you have that, but you also have dual cameras, so i dont know im stunned by that drone. I know some people are like well, i might need something thats, not chinese. Well, good luck, um, good luck, finding one! So that said, uh the next here, i would say, is kind of that: m200 m210 level and theyre selling like hotcakes online, because i mean they dont work very well reconditioned for option version, thats. A good good point: rob okay! Listen to that everyone, because theres a lot in that statement so – and you are 100 right – you know but now youre looking at uh, you know 10 15 grand for that drone and your batteries are a thousand dollars a pop and youre gon na need.
You know at least four or five sets of batteries, so youre, looking at 20 gs to get into it and thats thats a hard burden to overcome. I mean i know when i started. You know ride media doing my side, uh drone jobs that it took me. I think it was uh, i didnt want to say it was like 12 months to be able to get back in a casual, positive cash flow position, and you know i know my first year second year third year numbers and knowing those numbers it would have been Very difficult now that was a different age of the market, but it would have been very difficult to uh, have those higher cogs and overcome them cost of goods sold um it would. It would be a lot harder to overcome those incredibly high costs, and then you know. Lastly, if were looking at um, you know if were looking at. He talks about power line inspections. If were looking at long endurance, power line inspections, you know were talking a wingtra one, a dragon fish and now youre in the 50 to 100k range and that unless you have a client ready to you know say i will sign on the dotted line to give You work for a year thats a heavy burden uh to to to overcome, but there are a lot of industries that that drone will make money hand over fist. So you just have to know the right people and, at the end of the day, rob every business.
Is built on what relationships absolutely yeah i mean, and you really didnt, even throw in the inspire too, which is a you know when it comes to power line inspections, a lot of companies are not even using thermal, which is actually quite surprising, and we know that There is a specific two specific companies in california that have their pilots fly, inspires x7, 50 millimeter camera. So that way you can just fly a specific distance away from uh. You know what we call the coronal discharge area um, so that you can safely fly and get photos, but i think the i think the best way to understand the difference between these tiers and lets use the power line. Inspection example here is that if you are being tasked uh to take photos of transformers to take photos of connection points, cotter pins on cell tower uh inspections right, the mavic 2 enterprise, dual is probably going to be sufficient. Now, if youre being tasked to take photos of serial numbers on equipment, then youre probably going to be more in the m 300 range right, but also, if youre being asked to do that, the price point should be 3x. What the you know, just taking photos of the transformers would be, and so uh i would say it really again, as in all questions regarding science, the answer is typically, when being honest, it depends theres a lot of variables that uh in this particular case we dont Know we really dont, we really dont, but i hope that answers the question and i will say you know.
A lot of people know us for promoting the phantoms because its a phenomenal mapping drone, if not the best, its still the powerhouse and its a phenomenal all around drone. You know you get better 4k footage on the phantom than you do in inspire 2. In my humble opinion, well, you still use it a lot for action sports. I love that thing yeah, because its easily replaceable too, if something you know something happens to its like. Oh no, just get a new one. You know, whereas an m300 its like holy cow. I just pretty much flew an f 150 into the lake. You know so i dont want to do that anyway. Whats my clv score, going to be with the insurance company. Now im glad to hear you dont want to do that and youre dead set against it. Thats a good thing yeah a hundred percent, although we call risk management on my side of the desk yeah. Although im glad you havent seen a lot of the videos of flying with ashley, where the x7 is literally a few inches over the water at any. Given time you know, thats thats part of the deal is just dont hurt a person which you wont, no im, no praise, god i havent and praise god. It probably wont in the future. I hope not probably wont as long as i dont let my ego get in front of my systems and habits and routines.
I believe i am capable of uh of over doing that. I totally agree. Yes, what do we call? Intellectual laziness was that impetuousness is. That is that the right word, but my point is laziness as soon as we get intellectually lazy thats when things start thats when bad things start to happen, so put your guard down so to speak, yeah and thats. Also why there i do certain things. Still the old fashioned way as a reminder of like nope. This is harder, but every time i do it harder, it becomes easier and then its not hard anymore, yeah so yeah for sure philosophizing again. Well, gary. I hope we answered your question and for your questions, everybody else out there ask droneyou.com wed love to hear from you. We would love it if you would subscribe and if you would hit the like button, if youre on youtube and just give us uh. Let us know what you think about the show, as well wed love to hear from you guys, um in any form, youre comfortable with definitely – and thank you again for listening. Thank you to everyone who is a dronia member and continues to support us. We we do greatly appreciate it as we try to go above and beyond other flight schools by teaching from experience. So thank you very much for your support. It does mean the world to us and yes, i do have a heart and it does mean a lot.
So, thank you on that non bombshell.