One common piece of advice is to find a job you love. And there is no better way to do that than turning your hobby into a source of income. But too many of us overlook the earning potential of their hobbies and see their dream of living their passion as just that, a dream. But there are ways that you could make your hobby your job by following the proper steps. Here are a few tips on how to turn your hobby into a career.
Look for Ways to Monetize It
The difference between a hobby and a side job is spending money on it versus earning money from it. If you’re going to turn a hobby into a career, look for ways to make money from it.
This could be selling jewelry at shows or selling it online instead of giving it away. It could be creating quilts from T-shirt collections and baby clothes for others instead of for family. Or teaching classes on how to do what you like to do, though you’ll need to find out how to generate a regular stream of students.
If you enjoy writing, you could work on crowdsourcing sites to generate content for clients, create a blog and make money from ads, or self-publish works. If you like writing comics you could create a site like RageMaker.net for instance. Then you could earn money from donations by visitors or use the site to promote your content for sale.
Earning that first commission for a sale, the first royalty check for your self-published work, or receiving your first round of payments for a job is thrilling. The challenge for many is doing it again and again and again. You only have a career when you can generate income over the long-term.
Suppose you’ve generated revenue for a while but it is now petering off. Start researching ways to innovate and improve your business. Don’t assume the solution is cutting corners, reducing the price and quality. Instead, look for value-added propositions like partnering with another artist to teach two classes in one afternoon while you both earn money from the event.
Or you need to do market analysis and better position your ads in front of your target audience. An artist could stop trying to teach art classes to adults and work with day-cares and after school programs instead. If you’re a writer who isn’t making much from writing, perhaps you need to edit others’ works for a while to generate income. An artist whose comics aren’t selling well could complete book covers instead.
Keep It Simple
Working complex systems only arise out of working simple systems. You may need to change your offering or target another audience, but you will fail if you try to be all things to all people. If you’re trying to expand your services in an attempt to generate more money, understand your “mission statement” or brand and keep any additional services within that arena.
You can turn a hobby into a business or career once you can earn enough money from it to pay your bills. If you follow the few tips in this article, you’ll be halfway through achieving your dream of making a living from your passion.