The 2021 job market has many of us settling into jobs we aren’t necessarily passionate about. While paying the bills and working the traditional 9-5 is something to be proud of, there is no reason you can’t expand your horizons and conjure up a passion project to generate a little extra joy and income.
Types of Hustles
A side hustle can be any job, occupation, or business you run outside your primary work hours, as a means to boost income. This could be a small startup you launch alone, a part-time job, a business selling goods or services, or even just investing and trading in the stock market.
Your side hustle also doesn’t have to be immensely lucrative, it can be something you love, but doesn’t quite pay the bills.
Common side hustles include:
- Photography or Music
- Selling crafts or baked goods
- Creating digital products
- Flipping houses
There is also the possibility of choosing a side hustle in the same field as your primary job. This could be a great way to improve your skills at your day job and help you get ahead. For example, a sous chef by day, may sell their homemade goods at a farmer’s market on the weekends. Just make sure your employer doesn’t have any rules against running a side business.
But, in general, most people like to choose a side hustle entirely different from their day job. This helps avoid burnout and fatigue, and can provide a creative outlet.
Depending on your occupation, you may need to invest lots of time and money to get the project going, so it can be helpful to bring in experts to pick up the slack while you’re working your day job.
A side hustle can take years to get off the ground, but it can also just take a few months — it really depends on the project and the time you have to devote to it. Today, we’ll be discussing a few common 2021 side hustles.
Working as a virtual assistant means your side hustle will be entirely remote, this can be a huge bonus if you’re juggling other work. In this role, you would help your employer with tasks related to administration– such as answering emails, transcribing documents, preparing invoices, scheduling events, etc. If you’re really looking to stand out, you can specialize in one field. For example, some virtual assistants only handle social media or customer service related tasks for their boss.
If you’ve never been a virtual assistant before, chances are you’ve still acquired many transferable skills in your previous jobs. There are also countless online courses that will help you prepare. Some examples include: Beginner or Intermediate level Excel, HTML and CSS, Statistics, Copywriting, Business Management, etc.
If you’re unsure where to start the application process for this side hustle, you can go through an agency or work directly for an independent employer or company. If you’re working as a virtual assistant while simultaneously juggling other forms of employment, it’s best to start on a contract-basis. On average, a virtual assistant makes around $16 an hour.
Creating Digital Products
Digital products are everywhere today, and if you’re looking to create your own this abundance of digital spaces works both for and against you. A digital product is defined as a software enabled service that serves some form of utility to humans. Digital products include e-books, podcasts, downloadable templates, websites, etc.
Generally, when starting on a side hustle, it is best to dive right in and get started. However, with digital products, the best thing you can do before you settle on a project is to research. Make sure you know your market and your audience before you start to create any real content. This will help make sure you don’t struggle to capture a following later on in the process.
Once you’ve settled on an idea, start generating some buzz around it. Build up a list of potential customers, and get your family, friends, colleagues, acquaintances, and everyone else anticipating your launch. Some experts recommend starting with a landing page, but the process is your own. Just make sure to continually do your research and reach out to someone in the field who may be able to provide you with some insight.
Once you’ve created your product and generated a healthy amount of traffic on the page, you can start with a soft launch and shift your focus to improving the quality of the site. After some time and a lot of hard work you can launch your site on a grander scale, and hopefully generate some new customers and launch partners in the process.
Creating and launching a digital product is no small undertaking, so don’t be discouraged if it’s taking longer than you expected!
Juggling a primary job and a side hustle comes down to one important thing: Time Management.
If you’re planning to take on a second job, be ready for lots of multitasking and juggling — and understand that your primary job can’t fall to the back burner. But, if there is something you’re passionate about, and think it can bring in some extra income, just start! Do preliminary research, contact some experts in the field, and see if you have the time and money to make this dream a reality.
“Hustling” is of course easier said than done, so make sure to carve out time in your calendar exclusively for your project. And make sure you stick to it! It might involve late-nights, early mornings, and weekends — the side hustle won’t work if you don’t.