Side Hustle or a Con? A True Distinction

I love writing.

It is one of my favorite things to do. However, one thing I am not a fan of is blasting my readers with ads, annoying popups, or a constant barrage of "ask, ask, ask".

I value people and I want to bring them value. Simple as that. So when people ask me, "Rob, what can I do to make more money?" I answer the question with a question.

"When you have free time, what do you find yourself doing the most?"

That's an important question to reflect on and answer. Then ask yourself a follow up:

"Can I turn this into a business?"

Drive is key here because video games and D&D isn't necessarily a business unless you can really grind and turn it into one. Maybe you do a YouTube channel about mastering a certain game, or you do really cool mini-episodes on D&D campaigns and ways to make the game more intriguing. Not sure, but it's your hustle.

I unfortunately see a lot of people who write posts like 40 Ways to Make $100,000 in Side Income every year. I like their effort, but that post is sensationalized to get you to click so they can monetize you. It's like a multi-level marketing firm, but in blog-form.

No fun, right?

I want people to find something they love doing and just kill it. It's work. It takes effort, drive, and motivation and not too many people succeed. 80% of new businesses fail in the first 18 months. That means you have to have good planning and even better execution. You do not need a ton of start up capital or need an angel investor. If you pour enough sweat equity into your business, you'll be surprised at the ROI.

I just don't want you be conned into dumping a lot of capital into a blogger's idea that he or she initially only put out there to make themselves money. That business thrives on content, and clickable content at that, even if it is subpar.

No matter what your side job is, just make sure you can do the following before you say yes:

1) Justify the startup costs (hopefully they are minimum).

2) Map out a good plan that details revenue stream, growth, and scope.

3) Answer "Why?" (Why are you starting this company--and money isn't the answer). 

4) Provide true value and start with serving your customers more than yourself.

If you can do those four things, you're off to a good start. Whatever you do, just remember to start with your customers and provide genuine value. Those are two things that are timeless and fairly uncommon in the marketplace.