Imagine getting an extra $100, $500, or $1,000 each month from your side hustle. What are you going to do with that kind of money?
What about when your side hustle takes off, and you start getting an extra $5,000 or maybe even $10,000 a month? Would you still stay at your day job?
While all these scenarios are very much possible, don’t forget that setting up a side hustle can be, well, a bit of a hassle. You’ve got a busy day job, after all. And you need to figure out how you’re going to juggle your job and your side hustle at the same time.
If you’ve got a hectic work schedule, then your commitment to starting a side hustle will be tested. However, if you’ve got a relatively easy job, then you’re very lucky!
Don’t worry though, no matter how busy your day job is, the tips I’m going to share in this 5-minute guide will not only help you start a side hustle, but will also maximize your chances of success!
Choosing The Best Side Hustle For You
There are many different kinds of side hustles you can start. However, which ones are going to help you generate a respectable figure each month?
Side hustles aren’t created equal. There are some you can start right now, but you’ll probably only earn a few bucks for your time. And there are others which require special skills, but will net you a handsome amount for just a few hours’ work.
Write down your hobbies, your skills, and your interests. Find something that will intersect all three and that will be the perfect side hustle for you.
Why? Because it’s something you already enjoy doing, it’s something that you can probably do in a short span of time. And in side-hustling, the faster you can finish a job, the more money you make!
But what if it’s not so clear-cut? Like you’ve got a couple of possible side hustles that overlap? Well, in that case, you need to do some analysis. Figure out which side hustle is going to bring you the most amount of money in the least number of hours worked.
For instance, you’ve got Side Hustle A which will net you $100 for 10 hours of work (effective hourly rate is $10/hour). Sounds great, right? However, you know you can also work on Side Hustle B which will net you $100 for only 4 hours of work (effective hourly rate is $25/hour).
Which side hustle are you going to do? For most of you, you’ll probably choose Side Hustle B. With Side Hustle B, you can earn $250 for 10 hours of work as opposed to only $100 for Side Hustle A!
Now, for those who aren’t motivated by money, you need to do some more thinking. Even if Side Hustle B makes more money than Side Hustle A, if you know Side Hustle B is going to be stressful and you’re not going to enjoy it as much, then you may opt to go for Side Hustle A (even if you earn less).
Go with what makes you happy and comfortable. If you value your day job, then choose a side hustle that’s not going to interfere or cause conflicts with your job.
Plan The Details On How You’re Going To Start Your Side Hustle
Now that you’ve figured out which side hustle you’re going to do, it’s time to start planning the details. Some side hustles won’t require as much thorough planning as others.
For example, if you offer lawn mowing or pruning services, you can simply go out there and start knocking on doors and ask people if they need your help (you can see from the outside which properties can benefit from cutting grass).
But, if your side hustle requires a better approach, then planning is going to be essential. For example, if you’re a graphic designer, you can’t just go knocking on people’s doors and asking them if they need any logos or graphics designed! That’s just not going to work, and some people may even call the cops on you!
So, for side hustles with a higher barrier to entry, planning is going to be key to your success. As the saying goes, the devil is in the details. You need to spend a few days or a few weeks to get everything in order.
Here’s what you need to do:
- List down the tools and resources you’ll need
Some hustles require the purchase of special tools. You know your side hustle best. You know if you need any tools to help you complete jobs in an efficient manner. For example, if you’re planning to start a blog and you want to host it yourself, then you will need to purchase a domain name and a web hosting package. If you’re a graphic designer, you may need to purchase software like Photoshop, etc.
- Plan how you’re going to brand and market yourself
Branding plays a key role in your success. Branding goes far beyond logos and your profile pictures on various social media places, it is actually how people perceive you and your business.
For instance, if you want to be recognized as a fashion blogger, then that’s what you’re going to focus on. You’ll write all about fashion. You’ll attend fashion shows and critique fashion designs on your blog. Every time someone sees your name or your brand on the Internet, then they know it’s going to be something related to fashion.
Write out how you want your brand to be known. Make it your mission. Everything you do from this point forward is going to be in line with your mission so you can build the right brand for your business.
- Figure out how to get clients
It’s nice to think of a future when your side hustle finally becomes so popular that you start turning away clients, not because you want to, but simply because you have no more time. It’s a nice problem to have, isn’t it? When you’ve got your plate full like that, then it’s a sign that you’ve made it and you’re succeeding at your side hustle!
But, first, before you can get to that point, you need to figure out how to get your first-ever paying client. I’m stressing the ‘paying’ part because in some cases, you may want to do a free job for your first few customers just to get the ball rolling. While that strategy can work in some side hustles, in others, not so much.
If you become known as someone who’s willing to do free work, then you’ll probably have people asking you to do the same thing over and over. And you’ll probably feel obliged especially if they’re family or friends.
When push comes to shove, don’t be afraid to put your foot down and say “no.” If you’re a pushover, then expect your side hustle to fail. So, if you want your side hustle to take off, then it’s best to get paid for whatever it is you’re offering to the world.
There are several ways you can get clients, but of course, it’s going to vary widely depending on your side hustle. In many cases, you can probably answer ads on job boards or community boards. Look for people who are searching for exactly the kind of service you provide and then talk to them. Tell them why you’re the best person for the job.
You can even ask for referrals from your family and friends. If they know you’ve got what it takes to succeed and you’re a person of integrity, then they’ll be more than happy to refer you to their friends.
It’s a different story though if you’ve got a reputation for being a good-for-nothing. People will be less inclined to refer you to their friends. This is why building strong relationships and being a person of your word is important. If this is something you need to work on, then make sure you fix this bad attitude first before you even start your side hustle.
- How do you want to get paid?
Getting paid may sound simple enough. And it may be true for the more menial side hustles where you get paid in cash after doing the work. However, for more complex and technical side hustles, you’ll need to figure out how you’re going to get paid.
For instance, if you’re freelancing or doing affiliate marketing, you may need to set up a PayPal account to receive payments. Some affiliate networks or freelance platforms don’t support PayPal, only direct deposit and check.
This means you need to have a bank account in your name so you can get paid. If that’s something you don’t have right now, then go to your nearest bank and open an account.
Go Out Into The Real World And Put Your Plan Into Action
The first two steps may take you a couple of weeks to sort out. Again, you need to iron out all the details before you go out into the real world and start your side hustle.
When you’re finally ready, then it’s time to put your plan into action. It may sound difficult at first, especially if you have no experience in marketing and sales. Let’s face it, no matter how good or talented you might be, no one’s going to come to you and take you up on your side hustle if you don’t reach out to them first.
You need to toughen up. It’s okay to be afraid of rejection. You’re going to be rejected many times. Sometimes, you’ll be rejected very rudely by people. And that’s okay. Just go back out there and improve as you go along.
Even if you’ve planned how you’re going to market your side hustle, not everything’s going to go according to your plan. So, you need to be prepared for whatever may happen.
Most of it’s going to be psychological, however. When you go out there, you need to believe in yourself. You need to believe that you can do it. If you go up to people and you look like you’re about to pass out from nervousness, people aren’t going to give you the time of day.
However, if you walk and talk confidently, then people will be more willing to listen to what you have to say. If you sound like you truly want to help them out, then they’ll likely take you up on your offer.
Of course, not every side hustle is going to require you to go up to people and actually talk to them. For digital side hustles, you can ‘hide’ behind your computer screen. You don’t need to meet your clients face to face. That’s the power of the Internet.
The downside to digital side hustles is that the barrier to entry is much higher. You’re competing with people from all over the world, people who’ll work for far less money than you. Of course, you don’t need to do the same thing.
You know yourself, your skills and your capabilities. You know exactly how you can add value to people’s businesses no matter where they may be in the world. So, name your price. It’s up to you to convince them to take a gamble on you.
Starting a side hustle can be tough and difficult. You need to spend a lot of time ironing out the details of your side hustle and how you can juggle it along with your day job. But once you get the ball rolling and you see some money coming in regularly each month, you’ll know you did the right thing.
The question now is whether you’re ready to quit your day job so you can focus on growing your side hustle, or if you’re perfectly happy to leave things the way they are right now. Your call.