I have hesitated writing because if you are like me, you’ve received plenty of emails. I wanted to make sure I had some value for you, but before I did that, I had to get over a few of my own issues I was experiencing over the past month. I was immediately affected by Covid-19 losing about $35,000 in business due to the cancellation of several event video production jobs.
Last month was not the most productive month for me either. I outlined why in a video on what’s changed in my Notion usage especially in regards to my Daily Log. With everything going on, it was enough to provide the kick in the pants I needed to get back on track.
Many of us are facing uncertainty, which makes us feel vulnerable. I remember feeling this in 2001 when 9/11 hit months after I had opened my first brick-and-mortar retail business. I remember feeling it again during the market crash in 2008. It is different this time, as I know you’re aware, but we still have to keep moving forward.
I believe that this experience is going to change the way we communicate with each other. We are utilizing our mobile technology more than ever before because it’s the only safe way to communicate right now. You might find this video I did on 5 Apps You Need to Survive Social Distancing:
Businesses also have to get smart about how they can maintain relationships with their customers. I am helping my clients do that right now using social media and video.
I have also put up some new videos on my YouTube channels, so I wanted to share those with you.
I am planning to start going live on Instagram a few times each week. I have a couple of interviews set up that should be pretty interesting for those of you who are small business owners. Make sure to follow me on Instagram and turn on notifications so you get pinged when I go live.
I hope that all is well with you and that you are safe.
Working From Home
If you are working from home, I have some tips for you. I started working from home again over a year ago. With my family now home all day, it has changed the way I work. I put together a video on 10 Tips for Working from Home.
If you are a Mac user, you might like this video on the Top 5 Mac Productivity Apps for Working from Home I put together.
With extra time on our hands due to not being able to take part in our communal activities, what should we do with that extra time? I believe times like this are opportunities for us to grow. I have a few ideas on What You Can Do While Social Distancing. Check out the video:
Communication is changing. We are using video, even more, these days which means learning How to Film Yourself. I put this video together discussing how to do that.
I have been using this opportunity to rethink what I am putting out to the world through my websites, social media, and YouTube. I love to teach and I want to lean into that even more. Many of you have taken one or more of my online courses, I plan to work on those. Some of them are old and need to be updated. I have other ideas that I want to work on as well. I plan to get some new course content on LearnWithJerad.Com soon and I will update you first when it is ready.
I also want to be communicating more often, so I will be using Instagram Live and Facebook Live to do that. Make sure you are following me there.
Podcasts are on the rise. Make sure to check out my podcast, The Jerad Hill Show. Click the image to see some of my recent episodes. You can get the show in your favorite podcast player or in Spotify.
Hey Friend 👋, the year is almost over, and that has me thinking about next year. Are you a new year resolution maker, or are you a bit more pessimistic like I am? In the past, I would scoff at new year resolutions because I not only knew that most people don’t stick to them but that I also had a pretty lousy track record myself.
I’m not sure if it’s the coming new decade, me turning forty next month, a bit of both, or just a coincidence, but I have been searching myself a lot this year looking to optimize various aspects of my life. A few months ago, this idea of creating a 2020 Vision for next year that will launch me into the next decade started to take form. 2020 will be the year of perfect vision. I want to encourage you to take this journey with me.
To dive deeper into this metaphor, you have to learn to focus on something before it becomes clear.
Even if we are not sure we can pull it off, we have to have a vision, somewhere to aim our focus. I have recently started running, and I find that if I choose a point and focus on it, each step is more consistent, and my body stays in line.
How To Create a 2020 Vision
I hesitate to give any advice because I am in the thick of it myself, but I want to share what I am doing right now to improve my focus. I have some ambitious goals for next year, and I plan to execute them while sharing the process along the way. I learn best by experience. If I can do something myself, or follow someone as they do it, I learn. Reading about what someone did years ago when the landscape was different does less for me. Are you the same?
This image displays the projected revenue from the past 30-days of State of Tech, my mobile technology YouTube channel. In August, just a few months ago, it was $1,450.00 US. That is massive growth in the last few months, and I achieved it by focusing on creating new videos. In the first half of this year, I occasionally released new videos and did not have a plan in place. Now I do. It will take a lot of work to keep this momentum going as there was a significant boost in traffic from holiday shoppers after Black Friday, but I have a plan.
As I run towards my goals going into 2020, I don’t want to do it alone. Running is more fun with friends, so I want you to come along if you desire more focus as I do. I started a Facebook Group, and I would love for you to join me at no cost. This group is free to join. I will share some of what I am doing publically on social media, but I want to create a tribe of people who plan to make 2020 their best year yet. Click here to join the group.
📺 New Videos This Week
Here are a few of my latest videos. I had a goal to release some new camera-related videos as the Christmas shopping season was ramping up. My tech-related videos on State of Tech were performing great and it had been almost a month since I had released any videos on Ditch Auto.
From My Resonance Log
Ideas, quotes, and thoughts that are “resonating” with me make it to my new Resonance Log in Notion. Here are a few from the past week:
What’s the one thing I can do this morning that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary. ~Gary Keller “The One Thing“
“If I’d waited to know who I was or what I was about before I started ‘being creative,’ well, I’d be sitting around trying to figure myself out instead of making things. In my experience, it’s in the act of making things and doing our work that we figure out who we are. You’re ready. Start making stuff.” ~Austin Kleon “Steal Like an Artist“
“When you fall in love with the process rather than the product, you don’t have to wait to give yourself permission to be happy. You can be satisfied anytime your system is running. And a system can be successful in many different forms, not just the one you first envision.” ~James Clear “Atomic Habits“
🇺🇸 Writing From: Home Office 💪🏼 Current Challenges: 20,000 Steps/Day for 30-days (Day 21 – Friend me on Fitbit) 📱 App of the Week: Instapaper (I use this to save things I find on the web to read later) 🎧 Listening: Tim Ferriss Show #401 Gary Keller 📖 Reading: How Not to Die: Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse Disease – View on Amazon | Get Free on Audible.Com 🍿 Watching: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel – Prime Video ➡️ More now
I have a lot to accomplish in the next week. It’s the last week before my kids start their Christmas break from school. I want to dedicate as much of my time to them as possible
Have any questions for me?
Let’s talk about it in the Facebook group. Click here to join me. Of course, you can always hit reply, and email me.
Disclosure: My content occasionally contains affiliate links and I earn a small referral commission for your purchases (at no extra cost to you). This helps fund the costs to support the newsletter, and I’m grateful for you!
If you are trading time for money like most do to earn a living, take a moment and read this. It could change your life, just as it has mine.
I used to trade time for money as my primary source of income. I would do work and I would get paid for the work I did. That was it. Nothing more, usually nothing less. Why is this a bad deal for you? Well, it’s because your time is not scaleable.
You are given a certain amount of hours in the day that you can be productive before you need rest. If you trade time for money, that limits your earning ability. It is limiting for anyone whether they are a doctor or a school teacher. If you really push it, you can work and get paid for about 12 hours a day, but most of us don’t want to work like that. Even if we need to for a period of time, we never see ourselves working that hard our entire lives.
If you want your income to scale beyond the hours you have in the day, you will have to rethink the way you make money. If you want to have more freedom and flexibility in your day, you will have to make changes. That is what this post is all about.
Before you start looking at different options for making passive income you have to be in the right mindset. Passive income doesn’t mean you won’t have to work. You will have to work. At the beginning, you may even have to work harder than you do currently. This is typically the case with anything you start. It takes work until you build up momentum.
I started looking into passive income options about five years ago when I decided I was tired of chasing clients. I love working with clients but I don’t enjoy the chase. If a client wants to work with me, great. If they don’t, bye Felicia! There is plenty of work out there for everybody and plenty of clients in most cases. The perfect fit will find itself organically. What I just said there is going to frustrate a lot of salespeople. I used to enjoy the sales process, but my focus changed. The face to face sales process is not scaleable.
If I was ever going to have the freedom and flexibility I wanted in my life I would need to make changes to the way I earned money. I would have to be able to put that on autopilot to some extent. My first step was attempting to grow my online marketing agency Hill Media Group. I started by hiring a few employees and getting an office. That grew to multiple employees but I quickly realized that my growing agency was consuming more time than it was giving me back. You can’t just hire people and get time back. It takes a lot of time to grow a business like that to the point where your team can handle most of the daily activities around the business. This option was not for me and it was not the first time I had realized that building a business with employees was not the right direction for me. Sometimes I’m a slow learner.
So how do you go from trading hours for money like I was? It’s a lot easier than you think. You already have the expertise, you’re currently getting paid for doing something right? Let’s start by utilizing that. These are the 5 Steps I have identified you can take to start building a passive income revenue stream today. Let’s jump into it!
#1 Identify Your Area of Expertise
This has been a tough one for me. Not because I can’t identify what I am good at, it’s that I want to be good at everything. It is hard for me to focus on one area of expertise. This is my struggle. For you, it may be figuring out what that area of expertise is. We all have some sort of professional skill and usually a hobby or two we have invested time in to. However, don’t limit yourself only to what you currently know. Nobody says you have to start with a skill you already have.
In his book “Choose: The Single Most Important Decision Before Starting Your Business,” Ryan Levesque said: “consider that you can always learn how to do something that others would like to know.” You don’t have to be a professional, you just have to know enough to teach somebody.
I am currently pouring into a couple of different areas of expertise. Early on, I chose Photography, and have since added in mobile technology and teaching others how to create their own lifestyle rather than accept the one that was handed to them. That sounds like a lot, and I should probably pair down a bit, but for now, that is my focus.
Whether you are a lawyer or a manager at a Starbucks, you can turn your area of expertise into passive income by teaching others what you already know and do. You just have to present it in a way that helps others.
For the Starbucks manager it might be helping local coffee shops hire and train baristas. A coffee lover usually opens a small coffee shop out of a love for coffee, not because they have management and employee training experience.
A lawyer could create an online course to help new lawyers start their own private practice right out of law school rather than working for a larger firm which will push them to generate countless billable hours.
You already have an area of expertise. You can utilize that to help others or you can learn something new. You only need to know enough to teach others about it. We’re not talking Ph.D level stuff here.
I created my first online course for photography on the subject of teaching people how to take better photos using manual mode on their camera. I felt the best way to learn was to understand how the settings worked and how they effected each other. I didn’t bother with big terms and rules that would make it hard to understand manual mode. I just taught it as I know it. Over 250,000 students have taken my course and are taking better photos because of it. Some have even gone on to start their own photography business.
Do you have a hobby like Mountain Biking? The YouTuber Seth’s Bike Hacks is making passive income by turning his love of Mountain Biking into informational videos that help anyone improve their off-road biking experience. Beyond making money from ads that run on his YouTube videos he also tests products you can find for sale online and has built up a large enough following to make passive income-producing exclusive content to those who pay a small monthly fee on Patreon for access to his content. I am not sure what he used to do before making Mountain Bike videos, but he can now support himself and his family through his love of Mountainbiking. He has even turned the process of getting better at Mountainbiking into passive income by talking about that in videos. He didn’t start out as a professional Mountainbiker, he simply took something he loved and started making videos about it. How cool is that? I can give you tons of examples of people who have done this with YouTube or a blog.
#2 Decide On your Platform
There are many different methods for earning passive income. I have already talked about blogging and YouTube as two different options. Here is a list of passive income methods I have determined as being something you can do on the side and build up over time.
Blog about a topic
Create YouTube videos on a topic
Create an online course
Create a podcast
Write an ebook
Sell stock photography
Promote affiliate products
Online Workshops or Seminars
License something you created such as art or music
Everything I have listed above is something I have tried. Some require more work and/or expertise than others. In order to sell stock photography, you need to be able to take great photos. To license your music, you have to be a musician. However, where people often get held up is thinking that they are not good enough to do these things. The simple act of doing will make you into what you need to be. I’m going to borrow another quote from Ryan’s book: “If you don’t think you’re ready to teach someone, think again. The simple act of teaching will raise your expertise exponentially, in a way you didn’t even think was possible.”
You should probably just go buy his book. I listened to it on Audible while driving to and from the airport and while on a flight. Get your first month of Audible Premium and this book for free. Click Here!
It was actually that easy for me to monetize this article and make it create passive income for me while at the same time providing value to you. Prefer reading books over listening to them? Buy the book instead, by Clicking Here.
I have found that I learn more about something preparing to teach it to someone else than I would have learned had I just wanted to educate myself about it. It’s pretty amazing actually. This is why I end up producing so much content online. I learn by teaching others, and so can you.
Choose one or two options from the list and get started today. You can make the learning process part of the education you are sharing with others just as Seth does on his Mountain Bike YouTube channel. Not good in front of cameras? Create a blog and a podcast instead. The tools have never been more available than they are now.
My blog is a WordPress website. You can sign up here for WordPress and start a blog for free. I recommend you do this regardless as you can start your process of building passive income revenue streams by writing about it just as I am here. Even if you are not ready to start your blog, I suggest you buy your website address domain name. Do a quick search to see what domain names are available here.
Just make sure that you don’t start too many things at once. I recommend two at most and I will do my best to create resources to help you along the way, so make sure to subscribe to my blog by clicking here or using the form in the sidebar.
#3 Be a Giver!
You are going to have to have the mindset of giving in order to build passive income. If I had decided to write this blog and sell it to people, it probably wouldn’t sell. I have not established myself enough in the area of passive income. Those close to me know that I make a large portion of my income from stuff I do online, but I have not been specific enough about it yet. While I work on changing that, I will continue to give.
In the book, “The Go-Giver: A Little Story About a Powerful Business Idea,” Bob Burg makes this statement: “Your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment.” I read this book back in 2008 when it was originally published and when I was already on my “lead with value” path. It helped enforce and solidify what I was already doing and gave me even more of a desire to give away as much as I can. Click Here to buy it.
What I have come to learn is that you have to earn the ability to ask people for money. People have so many options these days, you have to give them a good reason to trust you over someone else. If I added up everything I have published online I would guess that at least 95% of what I have put out there was put out for free. That means that I charge actual money for less than 5% of the work I put out. Sounds crazy right? It’s not though, because people are watching.
I put out a ton of photography content before I charged for any of it. That content, however, was monetized in a passive way to the viewer. There was a short ad that played before the YouTube video would start. There were links to the products I used in the description that are Amazon Affiliate links. I avoided the traps other creators get into such as partnering with brands where I would end up trading money for time again. I created what I wanted to create as if I was teaching younger me what he needed to know.
The most important takeaway here is that I gave first. Another great book that validates what I have said here is Rich Dad Poor Dad. Robert Kiyosaki shares this thought in his book about those trading time for money: “They get up every day and go work for money, not taking the time to ask the question, ‘Is there another way?”
#4 Make Yourself Unique
It is said that there is nothing new under the sun. However, it is also said that you are unique and there is no one else on earth like you. God and science back up those two statements. Understanding that makes me very optimistic. It means that even though there are likely others out there that have been doing the same thing you are considering for much longer, your approach can be unique because you are unique.
There is no other photographer talking about cameras and camera settings the same way as I am because I am unique. While there may be some similarities with other YouTubers out there, my tone, personality, and every other unique aspect of my person makes my presentation different than every other photography educator out there. There are people who would prefer your presentation over that of someone else’s.
With that said, the internet does not reward people often for copying others. You need to have your own unique take on what you are going to share with others. This will take time and that is ok. It takes time to develop your voice on a topic, this is part of the process. Just go look at any popular YouTuber’s first video uploaded. Finding your voice is part of the process and it’s a process of growth.
With every new blog post, video, podcast episode, or whatever you end up creating think to yourself, “how can I make that better next time.” Don’t feel bad about what you have already created, just look at how you can improve. How can you tighten it up or make your points more clearly? This is something I am constantly doing, especially in videos where I tend to talk more than the average YouTube viewer prefers.
You can not do what I am suggesting without creating and publishing. You have to put something out there and measure it. You can’t do this privately. You will have some flops and that is ok. You will need to learn that every form of feedback or lack thereof is a form of measurement that you can use to make it better next time. In the marketing world, we call these KPIs or “Key Performance Indicators.” When I put something out there, what are measurements of acceptable outcome? Perhaps its email newsletter signups or new YouTube subscribers.
I prefer thinking of feedback as data that I can use to improve my KPIs. That helps me from getting emotional over a negative comment. You are going to get them simply because you are putting yourself out there. Don’t let someone else’s negativity distract you from your goals. Be unique and you will be rewarded for it. Being unique takes work, but just like being a giver first, it pays off tenfold.
#5 Develop Your Passive Income Revenue Streams
Hopefully, by now you have an idea or three of how you plan to generate some passive income. We talked about topics and I gave you some examples. We also talked about platforms, and I gave you some options there as well. Now it is time to start creating and earning your passive income.
As I discussed earlier, you can’t just create something and try to sell it. You need to build an audience in that space first. You do this by creating content such as blogs, podcasts or videos. The only shortcut to success in this area is to pay for ads on platforms such as search engines and social media to reach the right customers. This can be costly and I am going to assume you are not going into this with a large ad budget. This is why Step #3 Be A Giver is very important. You have to build trust with people and you will do that by giving them information, just as I am doing so in this article.
Using your chosen platform, make it a point to create something once each week. When you have more time, create more often. Write a weekly blog and share it on social media. Invite people to signup for your blog so they get your new writings in their email box. People are busy and likely won’t remember to visit your website often so getting them to subscribe to your email list is a great way to remind them of new content. Continue to feed them information for a while before making the ask to buy something. Your product could be an ebook or an online course. You could even start by giving your first ebook or online course away for free. This will help you build your email list even faster and it’s how I have over 45,000 people on my email list.
It is an individual decision as to when you should try to get your audience to buy something. You can’t give everything away for free forever, but as I have, you can monetize what you are giving away for free. Eventually, you will need to offer something more substantial that people can purchase directly from you. This is where your real earning potential is. I struggled in this area for a long time. This is where I plan to help you thrive.
Helping you get started is the easy part. It only took one blog post that I wrote in one day, all before breaking my intermittent fast for the day. Helping you replace the income your daily job provides is a whole other thing and will take more guidance and accountability. I have created something new just for people like us. It’s a free Chat Community on Discord where we can encourage each other and learn from each other as we build and grow our passive income revenue streams.
It sounds like a lot, but the key is to just get started. Even if you only have an extra hour each week, you can get started today. Building passive income takes time and as you start to see the fruit of your labor you will desire to allocate more time to working on your passive income projects.
Let’s recap what I shared with you today:
Identify Your Area of Expertise
Decide on Your Platform
Be a Giver!
Make Yourself Unique
Develop Your Passive Income Revenue Streams
All of what I mention above will take work and dedication, which is why I created the chat group on Discord. Most of the people around you will not understand why you are starting this project so you will want some people you can do Passive Income with which is why I created the Discord group.
Building Passive Income Revenue Streams means you are starting a business and you need to treat it as such. There are no special credentials or licensing you need to get to start (unless you plan to give medical or legal advice, or something like that). You don’t need a business license until you decide to sell something. You can earn passive income from affiliate programs such as Amazon Affiliates without ever having a business license. It’s not required. A business license is required when you charge for a product or service directly to another person or entity, such as when you sell an ebook. This requirement could vary depending on where you live so I would check with your local business governing authority to make sure.
Ditch That 9 to 5
This is the first step towards ditching that 9 to 5 job where you can stop trading your time for money and instead invest your time into work that will continue to pay you even if you take your foot off the throttle pedal for a while. It won’t happen overnight. Treat it like an investment in yourself and your future. It will pay off and when it does, it will feel better than any paycheck you ever received from a job.
I have given you a few action steps to take in this post. I recommend you jump on them now. Don’t wait or procrastinate. Procrastination is a form of stress relief through avoidance. You will feel your body resist this change but you can override that tendency by creating your blog now or making that first video for YouTube.
Join the Discord Chat so we can discuss this together. Even if it’s just you and me in there, it will be worth having someone in your corner to encourage you along the way.
Signup for my email newsletter using this link or the box in the sidebar. I will make sure you get useful information when I have it to provide to help you on your journey of creating passive income.
Follow me on social media so you can see that I am living this lifestyle and not just blowing smoke. My passive income growth allowed me to travel full-time for two months this past summer with my family of six in our travel trailer. If it was not for my passive income revenues I wouldn’t have made it a week.
I hope this article gave you the encouragement and tools to get started today. If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments section below this post. You can also reach out to me on social media or through the Discord chat group I mention above.
I look forward to hearing the story of how you transformed your income by creating passive income revenue of your own.
The number one reason why people never start a business is fear but close behind that is cost. A common misconception is that starting a business is expensive, but that just isn’t true. In this episode, I talk about how easy it is to start a business online and share the tools you can get for free to get started today.
I have a lot of conversations with people who are interested in starting a business. Pretty much everybody in my circle of people that I talk to that are not currently self employed have expressed some sort of an interest in maybe starting up their own thing. I think it’s something that most of us kind of fantasize about, the idea of starting a business or like this idea that’s been kind of bumping around in our head and we’re thinking like, “What if I put that out there and decided to make it available to the world?” But the number one thing that people bring up to me as a barrier to entry in starting a business is the costs of starting up a business.
Everybody has this misconception that starting a business is expensive. And depending on what you’re trying to do, maybe it could be, but for most of the business ideas that I hear from friends of mine and people that I come in contact with, these are all things that you can start relatively for basically free, if not for a small amount. Because really all you’re doing is getting your idea out there and kind of getting it in front of people and seeing if there’s any interest. And that really is something that you should do first before you dive in and start investing a bunch of money. A lot of us think that we have to have everything ready to go, we have to have a perfectly polished product ready, designed, tested and ready to deliver before we can open our doors for business. And that, that usually requires a lot of expensive startup expenses, a lot of capital that you have to have, you know, and it really does vary depending on what you are wanting to do as far as your line of business.
But most businesses can be started for basically nothing. You could at least get your idea out there and start, you could at least get your idea out there and start to kind of put it in front of people and see if there’s an interest for your product or service. So I have some ideas I wanted to talk to you about today on how you can start your business for free using basically just some of your time, of course. A lot of times we will trade our time for something that we could pay somebody else to do instead and that, of course, takes money, having startup capital. But for those of you that have some extra time in your day, maybe you’re willing to spend a little bit of your weekend kind of plugging away and working on this project, I think it’s something that you can get out there and get done for free, and then even make your first few dollars without having spent any money out of pocket, just your time.
So before I get started, I wanted to mention the sponsor of this episode, which is WP Engine. WP Engine is a WordPress hosting platform that provides websites that are basically turnkey. Now WordPress powers over 30% of the Internet and there are lots of different ways that you can access WordPress. One of the things I’m going to talk about later in this video is how to get a free WordPress website. But if you’re wanting something a little bit more robust that comes with more theme options, so that you can really customize and kind of design your website to be unique. And also, an easy process, I say design a website, that sounds like it was going to require a lot of knowledge, but it really isn’t. And then maybe you want support. You want to be able to email or contact support so that you can have some help and assistance throughout the process. You want a robust system and make sure that your website is going to be up all the time. You want to have storage space so that you can upload photos, or small video clips of your products or your services, so that you could show that to other people. WP Engine is proven to be one of the best out there as far as it goes to WordPress hosting. You’re definitely going to have a great experience with them. The link is down in the description below, or the show notes. Check out their plans and pricing today. So the first thing that you really need to figure out before you go down this path of starting your business is whether, or not you are selling a product or a service. A product, of course, is something that you’re going to have, to have ready. It’s maybe something that you have put together and you’re going to be shipping to people, or perhaps it’s a product that you do on site. Maybe if you’re thinking about starting a local business, but most of the time a product is something that is going to be delivered to a person.
A service is something that is performed such as, if you are a local business, maybe a plumber going in unclogging a drain, or a training session, maybe you’re taking an area of expertise that you have and you’re teaching other people about that, consulting, these are all services that people provide. Products are something that is more of a deliverable. So for example, with my line of work, if I am going to produce a video for a customer or a client, I will go and film. It’s actually half and half. I will go and provide a service, I’ll go and film, I’ll help with, you know, the planning and everything of getting this video put together. But then I also have the deliverable, which is the finished video, that is the product that I deliver. And so you kind of have to look at how your product or service is going to be delivered, how you’re going to work that out.
A lot of online only businesses are usually product or service based, because you can maybe put together an ebook or some sort of a course or a product that you can sell, that’s something that you do maybe provide a little bit of service, because you want to keep your students or your users engaged and keep them around and make sure that they aren’t just jumping from one thing to the next. That you’re providing valuable information for them and continuing to give them useful content so that they can continue to be engaged with you. Or services. Maybe you are a graphic designer or you have some sort of a service that you’re going to provide to people. If you’re like me, you have a lot of experience in website design, so I may actually use my knowledge to build a website and deliver that to a person. I can do that all online without actually having to meet with a person. I do of course, like to meet with people, but I can do that all online.
So you really have to have a clearly defined idea of what you are going to be offering. Is it a product, is it a service, is it some sort of a hybrid? And that’s going to drive your decision making and how you market this product. You have to be thinking about how you’re going to communicate what you’re offering to the person on the other end who is looking for that service. So, the first thing that you need to do is determine that and then you can start moving on through the process of starting to put together your business identity. Now, I have a lot to say too much for this video on how to put together a business identity. Do you use yourself, your name, your face, and make the product and service about you? Or do you come up with a business name and put that out there so the business is more standalone?
I am going to put a video together later on this, because I have several businesses including a business that I branded with my own name. And that has caused it to be a little bit more challenging for me to create content and put content out there under my own name, because the search engines tend to associate you with a particular category or industry. So for example, I marketed myself as a photographer for a lot of years. And so the internet knows me as a photographer under my own name. If you search for me by name, Jerad Hill, you’re going to find a lot of photography related stuff because my name is associated with that. And so Google, thinks when somebody’s searching for me by name that they’re looking for a photographer, unless you put some sort of a word after that to help Google further understand what you’re looking for. Google’s going to bring back all of my photography related content and you won’t see my digital marketing agency, Hill Media Group. You won’t see some of my other YouTube channels unless you start scrolling for a little while. You’ll come across that stuff.
So you want to be careful not to kind of box yourself in. But then again at the same time, a personal brand is a very strong thing and if you are okay with that, if you are okay with associating your name with that particular industry, product or service that you’re going to be producing, then I think that there is a good argument for using your name and building a personal brand, because there’s a lot of trust built in that too. It’s easier for people to trust a person than it is for them to trust a business and so if you decided to go down that route because you’re producing content, like I’m doing here, you’re producing some sort of information. Maybe you’re going to be getting into consulting or something like that, using your name might be better because there’s a better chance for you to build trust with a person. It’s a lot easier for you to build trust by putting information out there and sharing it with others if you’re using your own name.
It’s why I’m using my own name and putting out this content, because I feel like I’m pulling from all of my years of experience of being in business and running different businesses and building businesses and deciding to fold certain businesses and all of this stuff that I’ve done over the years, I want to put out there under my own name. I don’t think that it would be valuable to put it out there under some new business name that nobody knows. So I’m using my own name. So think about that when you are deciding on your identity, and then when you have decided on your identity, you’re going to want to create social media accounts for it and a website of course for that. And so I recommend of course, setting up a Facebook page, not a Facebook profile like you probably already have, but setting up a Facebook business page. I have a link down in the description below to a free course where I teach you how to do that.
So you want to check that out, go through the entire process of setting up a Facebook page. It’s not too challenging, but there’s a lot of options and I want to make sure you choose the right one based on the type of business and whether, or not you’re a local business only or you’re servicing anybody with an internet connection who can connect to your content. There are some variations there, so you want to make sure you choose the right account. And then of course, Instagram. Instagram is very visual, it’s photos and video clips. But you are going to want to create an account there, because you will be able to utilize hashtags and communicating with others who are in similar industries or even the type of audience that you’re looking for. You’ll be able to communicate really easily with people there on Instagram. If you are more, if you’re okay with getting behind the camera like I am, or getting in front of the camera, I guess you should say, or I should say, YouTube would be a great platform as well.
I think YouTube is just continuing to grow. It’s exploding. There are people that are looking for good content, they’re looking for information, they’re looking to grow and expand themselves and they’re using YouTube content for that. And so YouTube creating is definitely an avenue that you should go down if you are interested in creating a YouTube account and getting that set up. I am working on a short course for that on how to go through the process of setting that up and making sure that you have, you know, everything that you can for that YouTube channel when you’re ready to launch it. And then of course, depending on the nature of your business there’s other social networks like Linkedin. If you are offering something that would be marketed to professionals or other people in business, like a business to business type of product, I think it’s important to have a Linkedin. You may already have a personal Linkedin, which is great. You’ll want to customize your Linkedin to reflect the nature of your new business. And then of course, you can start a company page for your Linkedin as well and you could produce content underneath that company page.
It’s been shown that longer form content really works well on Linkedin. And video also works well on Linkedin because there are not a lot of people producing video content on Linkedin. So, when you put up a video it tends to stand out from everybody else. Of course given time, this will change because people are becoming more and more comfortable in front of the camera, which I’ve been doing for a lot of years. I’ve been getting more and more comfortable or trying to get more and more comfortable in front of the camera, so other people are going to be doing that as well. And then last of course, set up a email address that is specific for your business. You can do this for free by setting up a Gmail account. If you want something a little bit more professional, you can set up an email account using the domain name that you purchased and we’ll talk about that here in a second.
So rather than your email address being like jeradhill [at] gmail.com, it would be [email protected] instead, which is a little bit more, a little bit more professional looking and it gives you a little bit more control. And I’ll talk briefly about that here in the video as well. So once you have those things set up, and the reason that I’m, I put social media before your website is when you’re thinking about setting up your social media, you want to use your business name or the name that you’re going to go buy if you’re building your personal brand. So for example, I used to have a personal Facebook profile and it was facebook.com/jeradhill. Well, I decided after a while that I wanted to merge that over to a Facebook page and actually convert it over to a Facebook business page, because I was going to be producing more content related to the different businesses that I have, videos and content, like what I’m producing now. And I wanted that to be a page, so that I had all the marketing tools that they give page owners, Facebook page owners.
I didn’t want to have that for my personal Facebook account and I don’t even really have a personal Facebook account. I have one that I use just so that I can, you know, keep in touch with family and join Facebook groups and stuff like that. But my Facebook page is my primary home on Facebook. And so you want that username, so slash whatever it’s going to be. Or if you’re on Instagram, your Instagram username, you want those to be consistent if possible. It just makes it easier and cleaner if they can be consistent and be the same. So be thinking about that and you may actually have to search a little bit to find a username that’s going to work on all of these platforms. I didn’t mention Twitter, I don’t think so. Twitter’s another one that you should join. I feel like you should join all the social networks, whether, or not you’re going to use all of them is another thing.
But it is important to kind of lock down your business name on all of them, because if later on down the road you decide you want to start using one of those social networks and now your username is taken, you’re going to have to go with a different username, which is kind of a bummer. So I just recommend locking all of those down, it definitely is an easy process and it’s free to register all of those. So why not?
So next we’re going to be setting up a website and you can do this for free. You can go to wordpress.com and when you go to set up a page they have on their pricing page, of course, they have some plans that start at $3 a month. And for blogs and personal sites, you really can just start with a blog or a personal site. They have a tab for business and online stores that gets a little bit more expensive, but you can start with a blog or personal site, which starts at $3 a month.
Of course, if you scroll down below that, there is a free plan. You can start with a free plan, you’re just going to be getting a sub-domain website. And what that means is that it would be like jeradhill.wordpress.com instead of jeradhill.com, and then of course you have to pay a few more dollars in order to get your own domain name. With their $3 plan, you actually get a free .blog domain. I did that early on when .blog was a new domain. So jerad.blog is my actual blog website address and it is a WordPress address. For the $5 a month plan, they give you a free domain for one year and so you get your domain name, you can register it right from within here and you can get your own .com, .net and there’s a whole slew of dot extensions, whatever you wanted. You can also opt to just buy it out, so you don’t have to buy it through WordPress, you could just flat out buy it. I’ve been using Namecheap lately.
I always used to shy away from those cheap kind of low price domain name registers, but Namecheap actually has been like really awesome and I’ve been kind of slowly moving away from GoDaddy whenever I need to renew a domain name, I’d been moving it over to Namecheap. Namecheap has just been super easy to use and their customer support is actually really good as well. So, but WordPress as far as your website goes, you can get one for free. You can use one of their WordPress plans or of course you can use the sponsor of this video, which is WP Engine. If you wanted something that’s a little bit more like professional and turnkey and ready to go, but is still WordPress. I think WP Engine is definitely the best option, but you have to be ready to commit to like $35 a month or something right around there. Of course, the title of this video was how to start a business for free.
So wordpress.com definitely is one that you are going to want to go with, especially if you’re trying to get it done for free or as close to free as possible. Know also that you’re not stuck with one of these, if you want to move your website from wordpress.com to WP Engine or to any other hosting platform that’s out there, it’s really easy to do that. And it’s probably a video that I should put out, maybe not on this YouTube channel, but it’s definitely a video that I should put out on how to move a WordPress website from one site to another, because it is an easy process so long as you just have it set up correctly. So you’re never locked in forever on any of these. You know, I recommend maybe taking advantage, if you’re going to pay for a plan, some of them offer a better price if you pay for six months or a year at a time. So if you know that you’re really going to go after this, you might want to look at getting the better pricing.
But that’s really the only way that you would ever get locked into anything is if you paid for pricing out into the future. And then you kind of have to use the services, because you paid for them already. So, there’s a list of business ideas that I wanted to put together because a lot of times, you know, we’re thinking, “Well, I want to start something, I just don’t really know what it is.” And a lot of times a list of ideas is a thing that can help get you started. You may read an idea, read a suggestion from a list and say like, “Oh, okay, like I didn’t even think about that. I’m not going to do exactly that, but I have this, that just triggered this other idea in my head and I want to do that.” And I am always starting little things and so I want you to know that you do not have to have this all perfected and planned out.
I am always starting little ideas and kind of putting it out there and seeing what happens, and just kind of watching. One of the new things about WP Engine is that they give you fantastic analytics on the traffic that comes to your website. So as you start to share the link and put it out there, as you start to put maybe a blog or two up on your website and a little bit of content, and Google starts to send traffic to your website, you’re going to be able to kind of see what people gravitate towards on your website and whether, or not they’re finding it informational or not. Analytics is a really tricky subject when it comes to websites. All of the numbers and data can help you understand things, but you have to understand what those numbers and all of that data means, so there’s a bit there. But having those analytics helps you also understand whether, or not your idea maybe is going to be able to take off.
A lot of times, and I’m sure you’ve been on a website where you come into the front end of the website, you kind of go through this process of like clicking and looking at things, and then if you leave the website without taking some form of an action, that helps the person who runs the website know where the drop off point was. Maybe you, if you didn’t complete the purchase and go all the way through, then they know what page was the breakdown point. And that’s really cool information for those of us that are, you know, running online businesses because that helps us better craft our message through the process. If there’s a spot in your website that is constantly, like people are jumping off and leaving from that point, there’s probably an issue with the content there. And it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s bad content, it might mean that you just solved their problem and then they left. I have a tendency to do that. I give away a lot of the information, it solves the person’s problem and then they leave. And I didn’t do a good job at giving them a next step.
And so that’s the process of making your website kind of flow and giving them the right information, so that it takes them through the process of signing up for your product or service or making a purchase or putting in their email address to learn more or whatever that process is. So I mentioned that list of business ideas, and this is where I will ask for your email address. I have a list of businesses that I think are things that you can start for free. These are businesses that all you have to do is, it may be educate yourself a little bit on before you start them. Maybe take advantage of the education that you got, you know, going to college or something that you’ve studied over the last several years as a hobby, or something that’s been fun or informational to you. These business ideas are things that are not going to require putting out any money to get started. It’s just going to be your time, investing your time to better understand, maybe what some of these are.
And I hope that if, maybe they’re not ideas that you can jump on right away, but maybe it triggers something in you and you say, “Oh yeah, you know what? That’s not it, but this is,” and that’s really what I’m after, is helping you just jog your memory or your mind a little bit to help you come up with something. Because when you can come up with something and get excited about it, that’s going to show through the way that you project yourself and your content and everything online and it’s going to draw other people in. And that’s obviously the kind of person that we all want to do business with. So I hope that that helps, that this helps you on the process of getting started. I think that the biggest barrier to entry is fear, really, fear of just starting. And then of course, money. Sometimes there are other things that block us from getting started on, you know, maybe being an entrepreneur or being self employed. So I hope that this kind of knocks a few of those things down and helps you on the process of getting started on starting your own business.
Hello Wanderers! Ok, that’s something new. Playing around with a way to address those of us who desire to wander and create more freedom in our lives. It is a fight at times so I’m going to refer to us as Wanderers for a while and see where it goes.
This week the cleaning and clearing have continued. In my first post, I spent some time explaining what This Week In Freedom was all about by giving you some of my backstory. I also shared that I was going through a process of getting back to the essentials by getting rid of stuff and being ok with getting rid of it.
I want to share with you these pictures of the shop at my office. The office that I am working on getting out of was where I conducted business for the last few years. I have had three different offices over the past eight years. Though I downsized a lot to fit into the office I am now moving out of, I will need to downsize much more to be completely out of there and not need a large storage unit, which I am trying to avoid. The shop was quite a mess because I had started to go through everything and had moved a couple of storage racks home. Before taking away the racks the entire floor was for the most part clear. Check it out.
So I spent just about all of Saturday going through everything. I wanted to make sure that boxes with personal documents such as prior tax returns or anything like that were removed. Some of these boxes have traveled with me from house to house and office to office. It was time to break that cycle.
I went through all of the emotions while going through this mess. Part of me wanted to throw it all in the dumpster or donate it all on the spot, but I knew that was not the responsible thing to do. There is a lot of equipment here that still has value. I would be shortchanging myself if I did that. I ended up listing about 15 things on Facebook Marketplace and most of it sold that same day within a few hours.
By the end of the day I had completely gone through everything and am ready to sell it all off or donate it. I fired off an email to my CPA last night asking whether it would be more beneficial to sell everything off or to donate it to an organization that would inventory everything and provide me with a detailed list. Once I have that answer I will decide which direction to go. Regardless of what I do, the shop must be empty by a week from now. Though I am in a lease until the end of March I want to know this place is empty. I will regain just a little bit more freedom in my mind knowing that this place is cleared out.
At home, we have also continued to go through our stuff and clear out more. I mentioned having several bags of clothes to get rid of, we have added more clothes, old toys and stuff we don’t really use anymore to the mix. Check out this pile, which doesn’t include a few bags that are in the garage. Now I didn’t know who Marie Kondo was prior to last week, but I think she would be proud. I think we have only begun to see just how much we can get rid of.
So much was done this week in the journey to freedom. Each week brings us one step closer to our summer road trip. To recap, our plan is to travel for the entire summer in our travel trailer. Pending something unforeseen, the only issue that could arise is the finalization of our adoption of Mikayla. We have been told that we could have a court date sometime in June or July but that is something we can schedule and as we get closer, we will have more details.
In the near future, I plan to bring my wife into the fold of This Week In Freedom as she was the one that made that pile as big as it is. My wife really enjoys organization and has had some really good ideas for our travel trailer that will assure we all have some space for the things we do decide to keep and take with us on our trip.
I have also created a YouTube channel for This Week in Freedom, but have not created any video content for the channel yet. I do plan to soon. Ideally, I would like to do these weekly updates in video form and include video from throughout the week.
Dreams don’t come to fruition overnight, nor does freedom. It’s a constant battle of will and the desire for something better. Even last night, my kids were bored. They couldn’t come up with something to do yet they have so many options. It would be much easier for them if they had fewer choices. I really do wish that our trip could start tomorrow, but until then we will keep working toward essentializing and ridding ourselves of the unnecessary.
Keep fighting the good fight Wanderers! What can you cut back on this week to create more space in your life? I look forward to updating all of you next week with photos of an empty shop with nothing in it.
Welcome to Wandering Hills, I’m Jerad Hill, a husband, father, and entrepreneur. I have a bit to break down as to what this is and what I plan to do here so in the first post I will try my best to present a 30,000-foot view of it all and as time goes on I will explain more. The goal is to create more freedom in our family life. Not to be so tied down to the things we get ourselves stuck in. For those interested, I will share how I got here.
My first business was in retail. It started as a brick and mortar store and quickly went online. As I added product lines and services both instore and online, I found myself working insane hours. I would get to the shop around six in the morning to get working on online orders that came in overnight and work on customer repairs that still needed to be completed. I had food delivered or picked up for me every day and often didn’t leave the shop until around eleven at night. Sometimes I had so much work that I just slept at the shop. The shop was open six days a week and closed on Mondays so I could catch up on orders and service work. I did this for several years. Retail was also very stressful because I constantly had to worry about my shop getting broken into by kids who wanted free skateboards and scooters.
Fast forward to the summer of my 2005, I was 25 years old and I knew I could not continue working like that. I had closed my shop down at the turn of the year and was considering the closure of the online store as well. I decided to sell off my remaining inventory and start developing websites as I had been doing some web design and development on the side. I had taught myself how to code out of the need to grow and add features to my online stores over the past five years. I had some money saved up so I thought I would give freelancing a try.
I knew that if I wanted to have a family, I needed to change my lifestyle.
When I decided to sell off the remaining inventory I knew that I could not go on like I was. I had ruined a relationship I was in which was largely due to the amount of time I spent working. I knew that if I wanted to have a family, I needed to change my lifestyle. There was no way I could be a good husband and have any relationship at all with my children if I worked twelve hours each day.
Shortly after starting my freelance website design business I got into photography and quickly turned that into a business as well. By mid-2016 I was shooting weddings and in 2017 I photographed 32 weddings on top of my already growing workload with website design. I still had a lot more freedom than I did when I had the shop, but I was getting busy again.
The housing market crash caused me to rely more on both of my businesses because people were not spending as much money as they were. I booked fewer weddings and businesses were holding on to their money to see how things played out. Thankfully I was diversified enough with my businesses and clients that I was able to stay self-employed. In 2008 I married the most amazing women I had ever met and I continued on my path to create more freedom from being locked down to my businesses.
In early 2008 I had started blogging on the topic of iPhone Apps. The iPhone had just received an update allowing support for third-party apps and my immediate thought was that it would soon be just as hard to find good apps in the Appstore as it is to find good music in iTunes. I turned out to be correct. Within a few months, I had a new business reviewing apps. I called it the DailyAppShow because I produced a video app review daily which was published to our podcasts, YouTube channel and a variety of other places. Back then there were a lot of sites trying to become what YouTube is today. Now I had three businesses I was running at one time.
In 2010, we had our first child and I decided it was time to get an office so I could keep work at work and be fully present when I was at home. My wife quit her job a few months before delivering our first child. For the next eight years, I would go from a small office to a large office and back down to a small office again. During that time I had ten different employees, five of which were employed at the same time. By this time I had transitioned from a freelance style business to an actual agency which I named Hill Media Group. I also had two more children. Things were getting complicated.
In July of 2018, my last employee quit to pursue different work and I found myself working all alone again. By this point, I had cut back quite a bit on the wedding photography and videography because I wanted to limit the amount of time I had to work on weekends. My kids were in school most of the week so the weekends needed to be for them. I was so busy during the week with other work that I had to start turning wedding clients away. In 2017 I photographed and filmed a small handful of weddings and in 2018 I took on none. Though I haven’t really kept this website up to date I am still receiving multiple inquiries for wedding photography each week. I still do a lot of photography work but it’s mostly commercial work that I do during the week which keeps my weekends free.
After emerging from the cloud of work that I found myself in after my last employee quit I sat in my office realizing that I had created exactly what I was trying to avoid which was a business that I felt tied down to. I also realized that my daily routine has become toxic. I felt the need to get out of the house immediately in the morning so that I could accomplish everything that I wanted to get done and be home by 5 PM. Though I was spending a full eight hours a day at the office I didn’t feel very productive. Once again I knew something needed to change.
I don’t need a physical office to conduct business so I made the decision to get rid of the office and set up a small home office. The problem with having a home office in our current home is that there is no room for that. My new office in our home is in our bedroom, which is a room only slightly larger than our bed. We had to get rid of our dresser to make room for my desk.
Now having far less overhead and the freedom of working from home, I have started looking into other ways I can cut back. I had a lot to get rid of by closing down my office. My 1400sqft office was pretty full. By moving into a small home office in our bedroom, I could only keep the essentials. Though I have downsized to my small office space I am still noticing items I rarely use that I could get rid of.
It is so easy to end up with more than we really need to operate on both in business and in our home. I often feel anxiety over all of the things we have and we don’t have as much as most in our community. It doesn’t happen overnight, it takes time to accumulate. Eventually, you need more storage and that leads to a larger house. It’s the American way and nobody will question your logic over it. We are great at justifying our actions.
On December 7th, we brought home an eleven-day-old baby girl we named Mikayla making us a family of six.
Early last month, we purchased a travel trailer and I started outfitting the trailer with new items. Amazon boxes were showing up daily. I wanted the trailer to be ready to go at any time. My logic seemed sound to me, but we already had enough stuff in the house to take from to outfit the trailer. I was once again accumulating more stuff.
Over the holidays, I started looking at what else I could get rid of. My wife went through her clothes so I did as well. I ended up getting rid of about 70% of my clothes which filled three garbage bags. I could get rid of about half of the remaining 30% and still have plenty of clothes. I have also started looking at other things I have that I have way too much of and plan to downsize even more. I am not downsizing to make room for more, I want small to be my new normal.
This summer we plan to travel in our trailer. The goal is to travel for two months while the kids are on summer break from school. Our trailer is a 28-foot town behind trailer which doesn’t have a ton of storage space. If we are going to spend as much as two months in this trailer, we are going to have to be very intentional about what we take with us. I am going to have to run my entire business from a backpack. My kids are only going to be able to take a few toys. We only have enough closer space for a few outfits. It’s going to stretch us quite a bit.
Two months of traveling in our trailer with limited stuff will be a reset for all of us. We will quickly learn what we can and can’t live without. By the time we return home, we will be used to less and my hope is that we can continue living a more minimalist lifestyle. I just want true intention for everything in our home. More does not bring happiness, it actually produces unrest.
My kids have a lot of toys. I have contributed to that as well as the rest of our family. When we travel, the kids are allowed to take a few toys with them and the rest stay at home. With less, they constantly play with their few toys. When at home, with all of their toys, they complain of being bored or not knowing what to do. I realized that in myself when I would get to my office and have a hard time figuring out where to start with my work. I had so much going on and so much stuff, it was overwhelming. It’s hard to decide what to do when you have so many options. You end up doing nothing.
We are getting excited about our road trip this summer. We will explore more than we ever have before and do more with less. As we move closer to our I will share more about how we are able to pull this off. Sharing our plans with others has generated a lot of questions such as:
How we are going to live as a family of six in a mid-sized travel trailer?
Where will we stay?
How will we wash our clothing?
How are you able to travel for two months of the year and run a business?
The concept of breaking free from the normal has never left my mind but I have taken some detours along the way. I could be a lot further along in my quest to be as free as possible, but we are here now and are working toward getting back to the freedom lifestyle I imagined having for myself and providing for my family. It will not be met without some resistance, but it is work we need to do. There is so much more out there and I need to experience it with my family. We have created a comfortable home and surrounded ourselves with things that make life more convenient, but that has not brought happiness.
If you are interested in following along as we make these changes in our life and travel as much as possible I would love to notify you of new updates when we post them. You can easily subscribe to our blog for free here.
What are your thoughts on living with less and creating more freedom in your life? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below.
Welcome to my Passive Income report for May 2018. I am excited to report growth in May and am looking forward to June. May was a busy month personally, so I didn’t get to spend as much time on growing passive income streams as I would like, but it is nice to see that growth can still happen if I continue to produce more content that has value.
I am realizing that I need to increase the production value of my YouTube videos. The content is great, but the production value is just lazy. Other creators are stepping up their production quite a bit. People are expecting more out of the videos they watch. I need to focus more on producing an all around great video rather than just trying to get something out in a timely manner.
Traffic to my websites saw a boost in May, but I need to be more consistent with creating content there as well. Having videos transcribed has helped quite a bit with search engine ranking but a direct transcription of a video is not providing the best experience for those who land on this written content. I need to take my videos and turn them into a well-organized article with quality photography when necessary.
It’s hard to do all things well. That is why most people focus on only doing one or two things to the best of their ability. I have never been that way. I want to do all things and do them to the best of my ability, but I know that to be near impossible. I give myself eight hours each day to work and I don’t work weekends. I either need more manpower or I need to scale back in a few areas. I guess I have some thinking to do over the next few weeks.
Going into June, I have a lot on my calendar in regards to family time. We have something scheduled each weekend through the end of summer with family events and other short trips scattered throughout June and July. It is going to be hard to focus on Passive Income Growth so I will take time when I can find it to create. Summer is a prime example of why I am doing this. I will have extra income in June and July because I have done this work. Passive Income is providing more freedom for me this year than I had last year, and that was the goal. I am getting closer to replacing my families income needs and feel 100% confident that I will be able to pull that off well before the end of this year.
Later this year I will bottle up everything I learned growing my Passive Income (Side Income) from a few hundred dollars to what it is now in under a years time. People ask me about these monthly Passive Income Reports all of the time. I know there is a huge need for education on building passive income streams from someone who actually has proof they are doing it.
Make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel to follow along as I continue to explore new ways to grow my personal income.
May 2018 Side Income Total – $4,698.92 (+17.33%)
StateOfTech – $1,378.28 (+39.55%) Subscribers: 31,567 (+5.57%) Watch Time: 1,507,912 Minutes (+28.93%)
We have released a lot of videos over the last few months and the numbers are reflecting that. We broke through the 30,000 subscriber mark as well. This is a huge milestone and has given me a fierce desire to grow this channel. I still feel that I need to narrow down the topics a bit to appeal more to a specific audience. With over 1.5 million minutes consumed each month, we should be growing at a subscriber rate greater than 5%.
Ditch Auto – $522.90 (+24.78%) Subscribers: 27,311 (+5.30%) Watch Time: 904,417 Minutes (+11.14%)
I was able to get a few new videos live this month. I am looking more into affiliate programs in the photography space to grow revenues and seek out new opportunities. A video I did for a Peak Designs Camera Bag brought in over $175 in affiliate commission. Over the next few months, I am going to try to bring on a few more affiliate programs for products I believe in.
Jerad Hill – $57.64 (+27.72%) Subscribers: 5302 (+0.34%) Watch Time: 40,005 Minutes (+7.53%)
I didn’t upload as much in May to this channel as I have in the previous few months, but the transcriptions of the videos I have been posting have been helping grow traffic to my blog, which has these videos embedded. My income reports have also been getting talked about a bit which has resulted in more views and subscribers. Looking forward to growing this channel as I would love to catch up to State of Tech and Ditch Auto.
AltCast – $0 (0%) Subscribers: 1,718 (+3.99%) Watch Time: 34,106 Minutes (+4.51%)
AltCast is a new channel started in January 2018 with a focus on Cryptocurrency Mining. I am not sure what I want to do with this channel. I have not been doing much with Cryptocurrency Mining over the last few months other than just making sure my mining rigs continue to run. I sold off some of the hardware so I only have two rigs left. I think I am going to need to pivot and come up with another topic for this channel in order to keep moving forward with it.
Amazon Product Links – $804.83 (-4.28%)
This last month I have been publishing a lot of informational content rather than product reviews which is where most of my Amazon revenue comes from. I need to start doing a better job representing products in my videos without the video having to be a review for an exact product.
Want to show me some love on Amazon? Use this link the next time you go to purchase something on Amazon.
Google Adsense links/display – $42.10 (+42.9%)
As I mentioned last month, I have been publishing more content on the two sites I monetize with Adsense. This shows up in the numbers. Though it is only $42, that also represents a huge bump in traffic to these websites. In order for adsense revenue to almost double, traffic to the site had to almost double. I am glad to see some forward momentum after how the last several months have been.
Sites with Adsense Integration: StateOfTech.Net, DitchAuto.Com
Paid courses on Jerad.Courses – $49.00 (-50%)
The Mining Rig Course is definitely not producing like it did for the first three months of this year. On this site alone, that course produced just over $3,300 in income. Not too bad, but I was hoping for more. I should have more aggressively marketed that course while the interest in mining was still high.
Paid courses on Udemy – $163.17 (+32.97%)
Just like with my personal course site, the revenue has bottomed out here on Udemy. To date, the Mining course has brought in just over $2,300 on Udemy.
Other monthly revenue streams from side work – $1,681.00 (+14.98%)
Over the last few months, I have started to build content for a few small affiliate programs that will eventually become their own category in this income report. The affiliate programs are for products I have reviewed or produced other content for. In the next few months, I will break apart this category a bit to further explain what it is made up of.
I didn’t touch my investments this month. My stock holdings in the Robinhood app grew at a decent rate but my cryptocurrency holdings decreased a bit after last months rebound. Nobody knows where Crypto is going. I know it is not going away, but it’s hard to tell where it will go in regards to value over the following months. My plan with Crypto was to hold on to what I had (HODL) and wait for it to recover. My investment strategy is a long game here.
Stocks (Robinhood) – Holdings: $10,402.92 (+13.24%)
Continuing to see good growth here. I did not put any money in this month so the improvement here is all market growth. Hopefully next month I can throw in an extra $500-$1,000 to purchase more stock. There were a few stocks that bottomed out in early May that I wish I had the extra money to buy as they saw a solid rebound in May. I need to make sure I have money set aside for opportunities I see like this.
Cryptocurrency – Holdings: $6,033.52 (-9.92%)
Last month I was happy to see things rebound a bit. There was not a lot of excitement here in May. I did sell off some of the GPUs from one of my Ethereum Mining Rigs and stopped mining ZCash altogether. I am continuing to mine with 375mh/s of power going to Ethereum.
If you want to get started investing in Cryptocurrency, I suggest joining Coinbase. You can buy and sell Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin currently.
May was a pretty good month. All of these revenue streams continue to grow organically. I have not partnered with anyone or attempted to collaborate with other creators yet. I feel that this is one of the next areas of growth for me. There are opportunities for growth in these partnerships. I have used my location as an excuse and I need to stop there. There are creators near me, I just need to find them and partner with the ones who make sense.
Thanks for coming along. If you have any questions, please ask them in the comments section below.
Since I started publishing my passive income statements, people have been asking me how they can get started making money online. There are a lot of ways to make money online, but if you wanted to get started fast and are ambitious enough, these 5 tips on how to make $1,000 by next week could help you out.
I originally created this as a video, but have since restructured my YouTube channel. I converted the video into an article for you to read. Please let me know if you have any questions about it.
What are your thoughts? Have an idea or something to share? Post it in the comments!
Hey it’s Jerad and I have kind of a continuation on the whole like entrepreneurial freelance topics that I’ve been kind of posting videos on lately, and that is how to make $1,000 by next week. Now, sometimes we get in a pinch where we need some extra finances, some extra money or we lose a job or something comes up unexpected and we need to earn a little bit of extra money. Now, typically when that happens we kind of get into this hustle mode where we want to do anything and do everything to try and make some extra money.
But for those who haven’t had to actually go out and try and do that on their own, perhaps maybe you’ve just had a normal job for a long time, it can be kind of daunting because you haven’t had to do this before. You typically go to work and you get handed tasks and those tasks you achieve and then you get paid at the end of the week or the next week or something like that. So, when you actually have to kind of take matters into your own hands and seek out opportunities, it becomes a little daunting. And so I wanted to give you some tips on how you could get started and potentially even earn $1,000 or more within the next week depending on how hard you feel like hustling.
1. Post Your Skills on Fiverr.com
So the first thing is something you can do from home, it’s simply going on this website called fiverr.com, which is Fiverr, F-I-V-E-R-R.com, and if you have some skills that could be put to use there, you can get paid anywhere from five dollars on up for those skills depending on what they are. So they have topics such as graphic design, writing, music and audio, fun, lifestyle, they’ve got lots of different things that are on here, social media. Things that you can do easily but probably you already have some experience in and people will pay you as little as $5 and on up depending on the experience that you have and what you’re able to bring to the table.
For example, say you have an iPhone or like a phone with a decent camera on it, you can provide services like shooting a video for them, a product video or shooting a testimonial video or an explainer video on how to do something. You can create content that they could put on their website. You can write, you can offer your services as a writer even if you’re not a professional writer but just somebody who can do a decent job at writing, and you can write things for people. Write product reviews, write content for their website, there’s lots of things that you can do. Go over to fiverr.com and check that out, I’ve got a link for you in the description below so that you can check that out.
It’s definitely a way … I mean, if you’re doing $5 a job, $5 a job, you’re going to need a lot of jobs, but some of these you can add upgrades or add-ons to this where that $5 job becomes a $30 job or something like that. If most of the jobs are averaging around $30, that’s definitely going to make the path to $1,000 much shorter.
2. Make Money with Photography
The second is photography and I talked really briefly on Fiverr, the topic of Fiverr about that but photography. Most of us have smartphones that take pretty good images and we don’t have to necessarily be a professional photographer these days to take decent photos that people can use. Now, realtors and investors and there’s all sorts of different companies that are looking for photos of properties or things that are outside that they need for either their websites to sell or whatnot, you could call your local real estate office and say hey, I’m looking to take some pictures of properties, I have time available today, are there any properties that you need photos for.
Maybe they just got off the phone with their photographer who’s two weeks out or something like that and they need photos taken right away. If you have a modern phone, you can take some pictures for them and charge them a couple hundred dollars for your time and just deliver them the photos. Most of the realtors are taking photos on their smart phones but aren’t really that good at it, you can practice a little bit taking photos of your own home or your own property and go out and offer this for them. If you have a camera that’s better than an iPhone or something like that, like a DSLR camera, you’re even one step closer to making that $1,000 because the better the equipment that you have, you could probably charge a little bit more. Because, if you say, I’m going to use my cell phone to take pictures but don’t worry I take good pictures, here are some examples, you’re not going to get to charge as much as somebody who has a professional DSLR. So you’ll have to price yourself somewhere in there reasonably.
You can offer $50, tell the realtors look, I’ll go out and I’ll shoot photos of the home for you for $50 and if you don’t like them, then you don’t have to pay me, but if you do like them, I’d sure love to shoot more properties for you over the next week. And that can add up really quick and you can even say the next one I want to charge $80 or $100 to go and get photos. And there are YouTube videos talking about how to shoot real estate photography. You can pretty much figure out how to shoot anything as far as photography goes by watching a couple of YouTube videos. So don’t be afraid to kind of put yourself out there and think about the different ways that you can be shooting photos, maybe product photos. You can call a local business such as like a consignment store or a thrift store and say hey, I’d love to come in and take a lot of photos of the stuff that you offer for sale and help you get them up on your Facebook page.
There are so many ways that you can use photography even if all you have as a smartphone so that you can get paid and help these companies, these businesses around the area get more exposure for their stuff. A lot of these people, these business owners just don’t think about it, they don’t think that they can afford it or whatnot. But because you’re trying to kind of get in at a lower price and kind of get started, you can offer them something that’s affordable to them.
3. Do Work for Family and Friends
Number three is probably the best option here, which is to ask family and friends. You never know what somebody has a need for and a lot of times people only associate what they know about you as something that you can do. So say, for example, you are a teacher and it’s the summertime and you want to earn a little bit extra money during the summer, most people just think of you as a teacher. They don’t think that maybe how to take decent photos with your smartphone so you can take photos for them or maybe there’s some other thing that how to do. Maybe you’re good at woodworking or you’re a little bit younger and you have some good labor left in you, and you can go and do some work on yard for them.
There’s a lot of things that you can do that most people might not know that you’re capable of doing and they aren’t going to know unless you ask them or you tell them. You can ask your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, other people that are around, post it to social media and ask and say hey, does anybody have any projects that they need help with. Do you need work done on this or that or whatnot and see what people have to say, and then you could say hey, I can help with that. Most people aren’t going to have enough work for you to like pay you 40 hours a week and that’s okay. If they have five hours of work for you or even just two hours of work for you, and they pay you 20 or $30 an hour because it’s short-term work, which means you can typically get paid more hourly for that because it’s a short-term project. And you can price per project not the hourly.
So, if you say, that’s going to take about two hours, why don’t you pay me 50 bucks. That’s $25 an hour and if somebody that becomes valuable to them, it would have taken them many more hours to do it themselves or to do it by themselves, it’s going to be worth at 50 bucks. Think about pricing based on the project that they have not necessarily on hourly. Because if minimum wages in your area is say like $10 or $12 or $13 an hour, and you say well, just pay me minimum wage, you’re going to be working pretty hard for a short period of time. So think about charging based on the project or whatever the job is, not based on the amount of time. Of course, the time and everything in the project is part of that but think about saying like I’ll do that for $50 instead of saying, that’s $2 or that’s 2 hours and say $15 an hour that’s 30 bucks, you just made $20 extra by making it a project fee instead.
4. Find jobs on Craigslist or Facebook
Number four is answering and doing odd jobs found on like classifieds or Craigslist. There’s a whole section on Craigslist where people post needs for certain jobs. I’ve read into a lot of them and some of them are kind of weird but you can definitely find something interesting too there. There are companies that need people to sit in on focus groups and stuff like that, there’s lots of opportunities for things there that you could find on Craigslist or perhaps in the classified section of your local newspaper.
People post short-term jobs, I remember this was huge when I was younger. When I was a teenager, I would look in the classifieds for any jobs that somebody might have there temporary and that’s how I ended up starting to go and mow yards and do yard work for people when I was 12 years old. I was going all over the neighborhoods with the lawn mower, pushing it up and down the street mowing lawns and all that stuff making money as a 12-year-old, and it’s definitely something that you can do as an adult to make some extra money especially if you already have the equipment. But of course be careful because who knows what people are posting, you want to make sure you don’t get yourself into a dangerous situation. Make sure to kind of vet whatever job that is before you just randomly show up by yourself. You want to be safe.
5. Drive for Uber, Lyft, or DoorDash
Number five is to do Uber or Lyft. A lot of people have been doing this in making extra money and there’s a lot of conflicting information out there as to whether people are actually making money doing this or if they’re actually just wearing out their vehicle, and in making money in the moment but their vehicle’s going to wear out sooner. I think that it really depends on where you’re located. If you live in a small town and you’re going to Uber and Lyft around there, you might not make much money because people aren’t traveling too far, they’re maybe just going to and from work. It’s not a very busy area so the rate in which you’re getting paid for your time is not very high.
But if you live near a bigger town or city where there is a airport and there’s bigger companies there, for example, I live in the Central Valley, California and San Francisco is about an hour and a half away, San Jose about the same. If you go into one of those areas, you can earn a lot more and get a lot more rides and that makes it worth it. The area is smaller but it’s busier, which means not nearly as much wear and tear on your vehicle as maybe being in a smaller town where your rides are longer. You’re going to get a lot more rides in a shorter period of time and then of course those airport rides and some of those rides that may end up taking them from one bigger city to another bigger city is going to result in a bigger pay for the right as well.
Of course there’s a little bit of time involved in getting approved and all that stuff but those are things you can almost get done in the matter of a day or two if you’re very vigilant. And going down and getting your vehicle inspected, signing up through the Uber or Lyft app or even both and going down and getting that taken care of. I know that there’s typically like a $30 or so fee for getting your vehicle inspected but I know from the experience of people that are really close to me, that you can go and make 4 or $500 in a day if you live near a big area and are okay with driving non-stop for pretty much eight hours in a day. But that’s a way to make money and they’ll pay you out next to the same day and you can get paid really quickly. Yeah, it’s some wear and tear on your vehicle but if you put away a little bit of that every time you go out and drive, you’re going to have money there for repairs or upgrades to your vehicle later on as you need.
So that’s five ways that you can make a thousand dollars by next week. When you get in a pinch, definitely don’t sit on your hands, be proactive, do something about it and you’ll have the opportunity to go and make a little bit of side income. You might find something that you actually enjoy doing and can do over the long haul and that would start to alleviate the stress of putting all of your financial burdens on one job. Spreading that out across a couple of jobs sometimes makes it easier and makes those financial goals of yours more attainable.
Let me know what you think down in the comment section below. Are these valid, have you tried some of these, what are your tips if you have maybe that other people can learn from. Share that down in the comment section below, I’d love to hear those and also see what everybody else is doing out there to earn extra money. Please consider subscribing to my newsletter. Thanks again and I hope to see you back soon.
You might often hear people say that there are opportunities all around us. It’s actually true, but it’s hard to figure out what they are and whether or not they are worth chasing. As an entrepreneur, I have to pay attention to whats going on around me in order to recognize these opportunities. I then have to decide whether or not it is worth working on or passing up.
This article was originally recorded as a video and posted to my blog.
What is an opportunity you saw and jumped on, or perhaps missed? Share it in the comment section.
Hey, what’s up. It’s Jerad with another Thursday thoughts video, and I have five different ways to recognize an opportunity. Now, I started working for myself full-time at age 20. Before that, about three years before that is when I started really trying business things that were outside of just simple things I could do as a team, like mow lawns, or deliver newspapers, or something like that. I had jobs and my first actual managerial job was when I was 16 years old. I wasn’t even old enough to have a manager’s position, but they gave me one anyway.
By the time that I was 18, I really was thinking about how I could start doing something of my own, because I don’t know if it was my personality or whatnot, but I just at that time didn’t like being told that things needed to be a certain way unless I agreed with that way that they should be done. A lot of times you get told to do things a certain way and you know that that way is the wrong way or the slow way. You want to do it your way. If you’re like me, the only way to get to do it your own way is to branch out and do it your own way.
Over the years I’ve had to recognize opportunities quite often because if I just continued to do the same thing forever, I’m going to get ran over by everybody else who recognized the opportunities and the changes that were taking place. Over the year, now I’m 38, so I’ve been full-time entrepreneur working for myself, freelancer, whatever you want to call it for over 18 years now, and a lot of times I’ve had to look for opportunities and recognize them so that I could either add more value to what it is that I’m currently offering or maybe even pivot to something that’s more beneficial to me so that I can avoid a slowdown.
For example, there have been a few major changes in our economy over the years, so I’ve had to recognize opportunities and jump on them when the time is right so that I can continue to not be so affected by different dips and changes in the economy, which thankfully I’ve been pretty consistent. I’ve had some dips of my own, of course, but as long as I’m paying attention to opportunities, I’m able to react and keep afloat during times when other people are being affected big time during economic changes.
Here are five things that you should pay attention to, to recognize different opportunities when they come about.
1. When Someone Tells You No!
The first one is huge. It’s when someone tells you no. Maybe you’re super excited about something. You have this idea or this thought, and you present it, and you get told no. It’s such a good idea and you’re just sold on it, but then you get told no. It’s such a discouraging thing because you got told no. You did all your homework, you really felt that you were on to something, but somebody didn’t recognize what you saw, and so they told you no.
That’s a real pivot moment in your life when you can take that situation and say, “Okay. I see the value in this. That person said, ‘No.’ I was trying to give them this knowledge, this information, this way of doing things, and now I’m just going to take it and do it myself.” I mean, that’s a fantastic opportunity right there if you can recognize what it is that’s happening in that moment. Instead of being mad, instead of going and being like, “Oh, they didn’t recognize my work,” or, “I’m not appreciated,” or whatever. Forget all that. Forget them, forget what they didn’t see in you. Take that and make it something.
I’ve done that several times. I think when you get told no, a lot of times it is an opportunity for you to branch out. Not everybody can see the bigger picture. Not everybody is open to outside of the box thinking like you are. So, when you get told no, look at that as a potential opportunity to take advantage of.
2. When Someone Says “That Won’t Work.”
The second one is someone telling you that that won’t work. Sometimes that goes in with what I said number one is, which is being told no. Sometimes people will say, “That doesn’t work,” or, “That would never work,” or whatnot. There’s been a lot of situations where I’ve been told, “Oh, I don’t know if that’s going to work.” I go ahead and do it, and sure enough, it does work and I end up earning an income off of it, or it ends up being another thing that I can add as a service. I get told that that won’t work so often that it’s funny.
I remember when social media was first taking off. The church I go to, I was telling the pastors, “Look, you need to be on social media because that’s where everybody that goes to church is. That’s where everybody that doesn’t go to church but you want them to go to church is. That’s where all of your kids are that are students in high school and whatnot. They’re on social media.” I got told no, like pastors, “No, we can’t be on there. That’s too risky,” or whatever. Blah, blah, blah. Now, social media is used for everybody and, of course, every church and every pastor and whatever is on it.
You can take that not just for in the church, but I wanted to use an extreme example that I was getting told, “No, that won’t work. Why would pastors want to be on social media,” this and that? “Our kids and our people shouldn’t even be on social media.” They had too narrow of thinking and they didn’t think that social media was going to become what it was. You can take somebody telling you that something won’t work as an opportunity to turn it into something, to make it an article, to make it a video, to make it a business. I mean, if you know something’s going to be a certain way and other people are telling you that it’s not, but you see the future and they can’t see past whatever’s in front of them, that’s an opportunity for you. It happens every single day when you bring something to somebody. There’s always a chance that they’ll either accept it or they won’t. If you think it’s a good enough idea, you can move forward with it.
3. You Spent Time Researching Something
The third is that you spend time researching something. That time either didn’t end up getting used, that research didn’t end up getting used, somebody didn’t want that research, it ended up not being a part of the final product or whatever. There’s a lot of times that we spend time researching or looking into something and then we feel like we ended up wasting our time. Maybe we were told that we needed to research this heavily and then it didn’t end up getting used in any way. That’s information that you’ve acquired now, and you can take that and maybe there’s an opportunity in it, in that information.
You may have researched something and now you can turn that into a white paper that you could share with people that’s going to inform them on a specific topic, or maybe it’s information that you can package together in an ebook. There’s a lot of times that we end up researching something and then just letting that research go, or maybe we don’t even think we’re researching. We’re scrolling the internet just going down a rabbit hole, per se, and you’ve accumulated information about something. If you don’t do something with that information, you might have lost it.
There are times we go down these rabbit holes and the information just leads us to a dead end and you just leave it at that. But there are a lot of times you find something interesting in that and you continue to go down that and head towards it. It might not be applicable to your job, or it might not be applicable to other things in your life, but there may be an opportunity there. It doesn’t hurt to look into that a little bit further and see if there’s an opportunity there for you to do something with that. There are always opportunities, you just have to go and look.
There’s a video I did on finding video or blog ideas. There are three tools that I talked about there, so if you go and check out that video and article, I’ll post it in the comment section … I’ll post it in the description below. Check that out because you can use those tools to also validate research ideas and stuff like that.
4. You are Continuously Asked About Something
Number four is somebody asks you about something or maybe even repetitiously. I recognized an opportunity when I started getting into cryptocurrency mining. I put it out there on social media to my friends and family that I was messing around with cryptocurrency mining. I had people coming out of the woodworks asking me questions about it. Because that doesn’t happen that often, that people just randomly are contacting me even people that I hadn’t talked to in five or six or more years, I saw an opportunity there, the fact that people are really wanting to know about this. I saw that opportunity as a way to teach them about it. I produced a course on how to build a mining rig, a mining computer, and that course has made me a couple thousand dollars over a period of two months.
If it wasn’t for recognizing that opportunity because people were asking me questions, I would have never thought to come up with that course. When people ask you about something or maybe even more than a few people ask you about stuff, people are coming out of the woodworks to ask you questions about something, that’s an opportunity to do more than just answer their question, but come out with something whether it be an article, or a video, or a course, or maybe a whole business to solve that.
5. People Are Complaining About Something
Number five is people are complaining about something. The number one way that new products and services are developed is to solve a problem. I mean, problems are being solved every day. I mean, Apple felt like the iPad was solving a problem, that the iPhone was solving a problem. This mouse that I use has specific buttons and a configuration on it to solve a problem, which is like navigating your desktop in a better way. There are new things coming out all the time to solve problems.
What’s a problem that you’re constantly having? How can you turn that into something? Or maybe there’s a problem that you’re always helping other people with. How could you turn that into a product, or a service, or an article, or a video, or something like that to where you’re adding value to where you’re fixing that for them? The whole reason that our economy exists is that there are problems and there are solutions.
A lot of times there are solutions that can be made to problems that people don’t realize they have. I mean, did we all sit around and realize that we wanted an iPhone and so Apple made one? No. They saw an opportunity. They saw a need that they could make us have, in a sense. We didn’t need smartphones, I guess, but they came out with smartphones. They gave enough value and added enough cool things to them and now all of us have one.
You don’t even necessarily have to wait around for people to complain about something, you just have to see an opportunity to add value. But when people are complaining about something, maybe something is a constant problem, that’s an opportunity for you to say, “Okay. Well, how can I fix that or how can I package this together as a fix and sell it to people or make it available?” It’s definitely an opportunity that arises all the time in many different facets of your life. Maybe not just work, but with your kids, or with your family, or with the hobby that you’re involved in, or something like that.
There are lots of opportunities there to be had all the time. That’s one of the reasons that the Shark Tank show exists. People are coming to the sharks with solutions to problems and they want money so that they can expand this and sell more of their solution to somebody’s problem. That’s how the beginning of pretty much every pitch starts out.
That’s going to do it for this Thursday Thoughts post. Consider subscribing to my newsletter to get updated when I post new articles.
If you have any thoughts or anything that you’d like to add, the comment section down below is a great place for us to communicate. For us to talk about opportunities, and share them, and work on them together down in the comment section. Let’s do that. Until next time. I hope that you’re having a great day and I hope to see you back here soon. Thanks a lot.