If your goal is to be financially independent, you should diversify your income. Making a living from just one 9 to 5 is risky. Jobs aren’t as secure as they used to be so having different income streams is strategic. Whether it’s to increase your savings, pay off debt or achieve other financial goals, multiple revenue streams create a safety net. Who doesn’t like a little extra cash on top of their steady paycheck?
Once you identify your services, you’re ready to diversify your income. There’s this common misconception that you just sit back and passively earn after setting up these different income streams. In truth, nothing about making money on the side is passive. Whether you have a side hustle or do freelance work, you have to constantly perfect your craft and market yourself for more opportunities.
I started freelancing a few months ago and I already made around $1,200 from side gigs . I am still figuring out how to strategically market myself and grow my client base. But here are 3 ways that have worked for me so far:
Post an ad on Craigslist
I know the thought of Craigslist makes a lot of people cringe – and that’s understandable – but believe me, it works! Just like any other marketplace, you’re likely to come across scammers but you’ll also also meet well-meaning people.
You don’t get charged to post if you’re promoting a service, but there’s a limit on the number of ads you can have running. Each ad runs for seven days, but you can renew them as many times as you’d like. Below is an example of an ad that converted into two clients for me:
I was surprised by the number of inquiries I received from this ad, but things worked out with about 20% of people who responded. You shouldn’t place all your hopes on this one method, but it is a legitimate way to diversify your income.
It sounds easy, but in reality, finding clients takes time. You might have to renew your ads a few times before people start showing interest, but as long as you’re consistent, the opportunities will find their way to you. Whether you respond to an ad or publish one, Craigslist remains a legitimate way to find work and diversify your income.
Join a Facebook group
Marck Zuckeberg is genius for allowing users to create groups on Facebook. These specific niches can answer all your questions and connect you with a supportive network of like-minded professionals. When you join a Facebook group, be sure to actively participate and add value. Administrators go as far as removing spammers from their group so don’t become one of them.
I recently landed a writing gig by responding to a post in one of the groups. A startup was looking to pay contributors and I reached out to the founders directly using the email in the announcement. I’ve been working with them for a month and it’s turning into a reliable income stream.
You may not diversify your income from simply joining a Facebook group, but if you become an active member, it can put you in touch with prospective clients.
These are some groups I’m actively involved in:
If you have some recommendations or would like to find out about more groups, please let me know in the comments!
Send a warm outreach email
Sometimes, landing gigs is a matter of asking. You’ll rarely find opportunities by passively waiting so don’t hesitate to reach out directly to the people who can offer them to you.
No one likes a generic message so make sure you personalize your pitch. Figure out why you’d like to work for that person or company and determine how you can help them meet their goals. Research some common grounds (maybe you went to the same high school or you have some mutual friends) and craft your email around that. If you don’t have anything in common, just express your interest and articulate what you can contribute to them.
Here’s an email I wrote for my graphic designer friend that got her an interview:
I’m a huge fan of your brand and I’ve been an email subscriber for over a year. You recently announced that you’re looking for a freelance graphic designer and I wanted to express my interest in being considered.
I have 3 years of experience designing logos and other marketing materials for small business owners and I am looking to learn from a more established brand. You can find my website here: _
I’d love to chat more. I hope to hear from you soon.
Be clear and concise. Make it easy for them to say yes or no.
How do you diversify your income? Let me know in the comments!
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