When I grew up, there was no Internet and no inclining of a World Wide Web, let alone anything like today’s side hustle ideas. In fact, job wages were still reasonable. So, I never blamed the generation that came before mine for advised many young, wanna-be entrepreneurs that; “Business is risky, you better get a job!”
Today is different, isn’t it? No longer is it possible to have “the good life” with the house and kids on most job incomes. And, that’s exactly why the “side hustle” has become a popular keyword, is it not?
Speaking of side hustles, I just read an email from a guru in that niche. Apparently, the guest in his most recent podcast owns laundromats and believes they are “the ultimate side hustle!”
I don’t know about you but I don’t agree.
Don’t get me wrong, I do believe laundromats are good, as investments go, in fact, I nearly bought one years ago. But I just don’t believe they can be considered a good side hustle idea.
To be clear, I am not even sure that most would consider a laundromat as being a side hustle and, even if they did, this passive business comes with a hefty upfront, barrier-to-entry.
The investment in a laundromat is always going to disqualify this option for most. And, if that’s what you’re after, many side hustle ideas can become passive businesses, especially once they’re running.
Of course “better” is relative. And my idea of “better” is a side hustle that anyone can do, which eliminates any business that comes with a back-breaking, upfront outlay.
To me, the ultimate side hustle ideas involve any part time business, with no barrier to entry that most have the chance to be successful at and that can be taught to others. Why? A bunch of reasons including, but by no means limited to, the fact that selling “how to” info is scalable, even without deep pockets.
By comparison, to continue expanding a laundromat empire requires repeatedly outlaying “big chunks,” in the form of start up costs. Whereas, there’s no outlay necessary to scale-up new info-product or training buyers.
The key word there was “necessary” but I’ll get back to that.
Even more amazing is the fact that there are businesses that require no or little investment that make money while you build a marketing list. And, speaking of lists, that is the real business.
Sure, I’m a blogger and vlogger who teaches people various aspects of being an entrepreneur, from side hustle ideas to all aspects of promoting a business. But this is what I do to attract prospects.
The real business is the list, not the content. The content is merely how pro marketers generate their list.
How do the most experienced and successful marketers make the big bucks from their followers? The profit centers are endless but here are some ideas:
So, let’s recap. The ultimate side hustle idea is; (1) any business that can be started with little or no investment (preferably none), and; (2) that lends to building a list of followers, and; (3) those followers are not only prospective product buyers but also ideal to offer “how to” training and services as well.
If your followers would like to learn how to emulate your side hustle so they make money too, you have a winner. Why? To kind of restate what I just said,] another way:
Of course, being able to sell “how to” training means you get paid the “big bucks” simply for having become successful in business. It’s a double win, in that your primary business is paying off and training others to do the same as you is also making you money too!
The concept is classic; “Do it first, then teach others how to do it.”
A few years back, a friend started a podcast about gardening. He interviewed many people who were both experienced gardeners and had followers on social media. Many of their followers—meaning of the interviewees—started following my friend. Then, when he hit critical mass, he offered a course on how his followers could make money from their love of gardening—he did it first, then sold the “how to” to others!
Several have done this in direct selling. They build a sales team first, mostly through online marketing, then sell training products that teach others how they can emulate this success by doing their own marketing. That said, not many would think of creating a business opportunity by first starting a gardening podcast.
“Do it first, then teach it to others!”
My friend’s investment? A podcast logo, a simple website and time, which was no more sweat equity than would be considered normal for other side hustles.
By the way, that friend had a serious plan. He predicted his humble list building business—with a gardening podcast as window dressing—would end up generating 7-figures a year!
The best side hustles ideas should never live or die on premises, like ads for website traffic, Google rank for organic traffic or building a bigger social media mousetrap than your competitors, being key. Nor should it be about a return on investment, like with the laundromat. In terms of great side hustles ideas, a true home run has only one must; building that list!
What will blow you away is how lists can be built simply and easily, even without becoming “an authority” or building a massive social media presence (exception; some lists are social media followers). So don’t worry.
I’ve stated that my ideal side hustle ideas require no investment to start or to attract prospects, customers and/or followers. All true, however, now I’m going to share something that will seem, at least at first, to be contradictory.
The reality is; list building goes much faster using advertising and marketing techniques. But, in case you think this fact means people without money will only be able to do this slowly, that is not true. Why? Because:
“Your competition (and others) will pay for your advertising!” Check out this thrilling concept by reading another one of my totally unique blog posts here.
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