How Drone Training Pays Off In Dividends for Your Business


You’Re listening to the ask of droney podcast, you ask we answer your drone questions, whether you’re here to turn your passion into profit and you simply fly for fun: we’re a community of wares and teachers who aspire to achieve greatness. We are hey everyone and welcome to another phenomenal episode of ask drone you. My name is Paul and I have a very special guest with me today. You’Ve probably heard of his name of before. Well, maybe you have maybe you haven’t, but let me tell you what you have heard: you’ve heard the name of his company and I’m talking about sky watch a company.

That’S truly focused on developing save pilots. Well, why? It’S actually in their best interest, because when you’re safe well, that means that they’re safe from having a cya or cover your, but when you crash so who am I talking about? I’M talking about Brandon Pakman from Sky Watch, Brandon welcome to show my friend hey thanks. Bye appreciate it being on it’s a it’s an honor.

Well, it’s an honor to have you and you know in lieu of it being safety week this week you know Brandon I’ve been seeing a lot of information out there about the key points of safety and safety philosophy. But it’s interesting because I really haven’t been seeing a lot about how to fly safe and I think it’s interesting because I also think it goes to show about you know: where is our industry headed and what are we doing and what I’m so excited to? Have you on the show today? The reason excuse me why I’m so excited to have you on the show today is because we’re gon na be talking about practical, real-life examples of how you can be a safer pilot, but also how you can benefit from it from the sky watch right. So I mean when it comes to safety when it comes to how sky watch views safety.

What are certain things that sky watch is looking for? Well, you know, there’s a bunch of different things that we’re looking for, and we actually have the ability to pick out a bunch of these different factors from telemetry data and read it. One thing that I like to think about is battery life when you land, that’s something that we think about the whether where you’re at or you can tell these type of things, if you’re flying low and fast a little bit more dangerous than slow and steady at A higher altitude to avoid obstacles. Those are just a couple examples of what we are thinking about. We’Ve also noticed trends like if a pilot is flying the same area and they’re more comfortable to operational awareness, their receive less incidence in those types of scenarios as well.

So help me understand your so sky watch is an application where people can get. You know on-demand insurance, but it sounds like and for you listeners, you know this. This is nothing new for you, but you know that if you fly through the sky watch application they’re able to get really a sense of how you fly, which will help it paint a better picture right on how the pilot operates. Is that right, Brandon yeah? It is, you know, it’s not.

Everyone knows that you can fly through app, but we layer in the mobile sdk from DJI, so you’re flying with DJI layered in to our app. If you want to use it, you know you’re. Looking at the map screen of our app in the upper right hand, corner it looks like kind of a phantom for a little white cloth copter. You touch that in transition into the ground control station. If you’d like, you can also send this flight box as well and we can analyze those and what happens is when you get about five flights or five minutes or more.

Then we tell you, congratulations. You have a safety school or here’s. What it is. You can see these flights and we give you feedback on what is going on and why you got that score. Well, I think that’s actually really powerful, because you know one of the reasons that I’m so excited to work with.

You is the fact that when students come to us – and they say you know Paul – I really want to be an actual safe pilot. I don’t want to just talk about being safe. I want to actually be safe and what I like is that Sky Watch through you. You actually reward those pilots who are able to understand the concepts of safe flight which may seem really simple to people, and yet it seems like even some well. Officials may grapple with how simple that is things like understanding the rules of takeoff right, if I have a pilot who wants to go out and he wants to learn how to be systematically safe, he understands that by building these habits over time, that he’s going to Literally, eliminate liability by while eliminating change, which may sound simple but what’s also simple, is that we have these rules of takeoff like the battery test, where you know we have a way and formula for students to test their batteries upon takeoff because well, it’s the same Thing like an engine run-up for manned aircraft, it’s one of those things that mirrors manned aviation training, but it also showcases the only way to truly know and determine whether you’re gon na have a safe flight and the reason I love this and I love teaching.

It is because Sky Watch essentially allows for people to get really an educational insurance package and reward those uh pilots for being safe. But what I also love and what you’re saying to just kind of come back to what you were saying is that pilots can fly through the sky watch app and prove that they really are a safe pilot and also be rewarded for that as well yeah. No, it’s it’s great. You know. I started this industry as just a regular kind of insurance broker that found a niche and then was lucky enough to link up with these guys and we kind of classify ourselves as insure.

Tech is kind of a cool buzzword out there in start-up land, and so you know my guys, the co-founders, Tomer and Ori. They come out of the top program underneath the Israeli Air Force called Talcott. So you know they are aviators and tech geniuses. You know they’re not just a couple of insurance, guys that got together to create a product, so they they really kind of understand aviation and wanted to see how they could kind of help in understanding risk and pricing it and rewarding those. You know safer fliers out there and there’s two way that that we really reward safe flying.

There’S safety discounts is like 25 % of it and then there’s automatic experience. Discounts that build as you don’t have claims. So our monthly product is, is my favorite product. We have our you know like on-demand stuff, like others out there, and then we have this monthly product and then you can buy an annual product with us as well. I think the monthly is great.

It covers you everywhere in the United States, and of course I mean. Let me stop you right there, because I think it’s important to just have a simple disclaimer. That says, like the reason that we’re actually having you on the show as an insurance guy is not because you guys have a great product and it’s a bunch of hype and blah blah blah. We’Ve heard that song and dance before right. The fact is, is that drone, you moved all of our insurance over to you in a monthly product, because it’s really good yeah.

Well, I think it. You know it helps people manage their cash flow. We all know this. Business is a little up and down. There’S people doing side hustles some dive in maybe lives in Minnesota, doesn’t need you know a policy in Japan worried but wants to fire it back up in April.

So from being that original kind of retail agent that started targeting this in 2013, I really wanted to create something that would work for the actual people and not just the traditional insurance model of a annual policy. But again, if you want to name a policy, we can get your money well yeah. I think annual policies really don’t make sense for a lot of people right because it here’s the thing right if they have multiple drones, they’re buying new drones. One drone comes in the fleet and one drone goes out of the fleet, but you really just have so much extra expense with those annual policies building in a new drone, taking one out putting on a new one, you know things change and with Sky Watch is, As simple as go on your phone serial number value done: okay, we’re good! You know it’s so convenient yeah.

I mean you’re you’re you’re, so much better than I would Paul. I love it, but I’m talking about it because I you know – and you know that I’m not an easy sell, sorry to interrupt you. You know I’m not an easy side, but one got me. I’M gon na promote you. I’M sorry, yeah know what um you know.

Another shameless plug here and a competitive energy, that’s really important! Is it it all drones flown by the named insured? So if your ABC drone LLC and your Joe Schmo you put in Joe Schmo in your profile and then you put in 8, you know ABC drone. Llc and then, if you rent a drone, it’s covered if you’ve got to phantom floors and then inspire all that liability is automatically picked up for you and that LLC. If you want the whole insurance, you can get a monthly or an annual product with us.

And it’s just simple math: it’s 7 % annually or 0.5 8 % so for an example, simple math, a thousand dollars, so you’ve got an old math at hanging around it’s five dollars and eighty three cents tacked on to that monthly liability limit which, when you start Out as sixty-two dollars a month and then those automatic experience discounts start to kick in after the first third and six months or respectively, you get 15 % off after the first month after the third, now it’s 20 % and then only six, that’s 25 %. So your total out-of-pocket expense for like this standard, one million is five hundred and ninety two dollars for a total year. If you do not have a claim, then you can also send us those flight logs. Instead of this more money, you share data.

You look like a safe pilot, we keep improving our algorithm and you know the whole industry eventually, I think, will benefit by us learning about what’s safe, flying and rewarding those pilots. You know for sure. So let me ask you this: when you know you reward pilots were flying inside the app you reward, pilots for experience. You reward pilots for staying in their lane. I love that.

But let me ask you this. You know you guys allow students of drone you who pass the flight mastery check ride right. So this is an in-person training. It’S our flagship training. It’S now required by not just one but two that you know federal agencies really excited about that and I think because it solves a lot of problems in Sky Watch.

I mean tell me if I’m wrong here, but don’t you do you see that we solve systemic problems with this training that help eliminate problems that would be phase in the real world environment yeah? Definitely I mean there’s a reason why you know we partnered with you. You know really like we were like a first part: it’s that operational awareness that they’re learning from an in-person training from experts. You know online education, it’s great, but we wanted to start with these rate reductions with a professional organization and then making sure it’s this in-person training, that’s putting them through kind of a skills test as well. My understanding is which part of flight mastery – and you know, let’s face it – we do see hull claims out there and people that learn how to really control their drone.

Isn’T going to be the guy who you know it’s calling me that is drone is in a tree. Hopefully you know we. We think that there is some risk management that is put in there. That’S worth that rate reduction for clients that you know past flight mastery. You know, I don’t see us looking to go out there.

You know online training, that’s great, but we’re gon na make sure that an in-person training is part of any rate reduction partnership that we make for sure for sure. No, I understand exactly what you’re saying I mean I mean Brandon. I really think the only way that this can get any better is, if you start building the drones to replace the ones you’re insuring yeah yeah. No, I think you know we are keeping improving our model and you know trying to make partnerships where we just actually. If you have the app make sure you update it, there’s a couple of things that are coming down the pipeline and then an update that just happened this week.

So what just happened this week? We have improved safety scoring bits in there and just you know, a nice kind of fresh update go in there and make sure you check that out and then what’s really awesome is you have some improved functionality? That’S coming down the pipe in a couple weeks where you can go in mid month and add a new drone like hull insurance, so you’ve got a rental for two weeks coming up and you’ve got maybe 15 17 days left on your policy before that was kind Of a manual process getting ahold of us, we would go in there and add it on the back end change that premium calculated mid month hit your credit card on file. It’S gon na save us. You know some time and give people.

You know the ability to really keep operating autonomously. You know in the field, you know this is a, I think you know it’s a pretty shoot-from-the-hip. You know industry where people are making moves and we don’t want to be. You know, slowing anybody down from you know. Putting cash in their pocket doing work, so you know update your app when this comes out.

You know we’re gon na hit all of our members and let them know because that functionality is important to people. You know moving quickly, definitely and after coming from a flight training today, I think a lot of people see the value in the speed and convenience, and I understand what you’re saying you’re saying you know you don’t want to slow pilots down, but you also want to Make sure that they’re not flying near stuff? You want to make sure that they’re building those habits and those skills to be risk adverse, and I think that a lot of people really do understand that um. So I mean it sounds like to me that it’s kind of like a no-brainer if you get trained and you go to the right training and pilots are gon na get rewarded for that they’re gon na save money. Over time I mean, I think we calculated it out that it was like if someone came to a flight mastery training and had whole insurance on a phantom and and inspire with 1 million of liability that in 12 months they would pay for.

A no excuse. Me wasn’t 1215 months that they would pay for the equivalent of their training in savings from their educational policies. With you guys, awesome awesome. I mean that sounds like a no-brainer. If that’s the case, I’m not a math genius, but it sounds like a good deal for sure it does sound like a good deal could just be snake oil too, but it depends on the policy and how much savings.

My point is this: is that you finally get training? That is, you know it’s. It pays for itself in time. It’S all about how you use it, and the fact is, is that you are catering to pilots right you’re, making it easy and convenient you can throw on new equipment, and I mean even what I love is. I’Ve got some ancillary equipment like my GPS unit and whatnot, and I say hey you know, can I add this to my policy and you’re like yeah?

Go in the app at it show me the value, here’s the value limit put in the serial number. It’S it’s really that easy and frankly it got audience if you’re like me, if you’re impatient, you don’t know, wait for people, you don’t want to call up and blow up Brandon’s phone because you know he’s busy and you just need an answer right now. He has the systems to actually make that happen. That’S why I think this is worth your time so Brandon. Thank you so much for coming on the show, my friend, I really do appreciate it.

One thing I just want in part, though, is it’s. You know. You’Ve got an insurance broker, you like, we actually distribute our product works, called a managing general agent and I appoint agents to work with us. So maybe you’ve got general liability and auto policy and you want to stay with your broker, but you want to Skywatch flexible plan. You can do that through brokers and we’ve.

You know made a couple dozen or so appointments out there. So that’s a possibility as well and if your broker is not appointed, you know Adam reach out to me. You know Brandon P, at Skywatch dot ai, I’m very, very happy to chat with anybody and if you guys, wring the support line, I’m the guy picking up the phone and we have a really good support team that works kind of around the clock. Answering emails and I hop in there too, so we really try and strive for service. That’S you know.

A big part of the insurance is the service and we, our team, is really dedicated to that. I’M very impressed with them for sure so, for you loyal, baby boomers out there that don’t want to change agents and are reluctant to change. You can still use the same agent, but for Millennials out there. We know you like the best for your buck, so you can get it from Brandon at Skywatch check him out my friend. Thank you, though, really for coming on the show.

I hope you had a good time. I did man always always a pleasure thanks, but I appreciate the time you rock and great for everyone out there listening don’t be afraid to leave us a review subscribe. If you have questions about Skywatch, don’t be afraid to leave them in the comments below that’s gon na. Do it for us today, though, thanks again Brandon and thanks for everyone for watching my name is Paul, and this is another episode of ask from you: [ Music ], you

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