3 Profitable Side Hustles No One’s Talking About

Matt Lane


Photo by bruce mars on Unsplash

These days, every article about side hustles reads the same.

“Start a blog.”

“Drive for Uber or Lyft.”

“Sell your items on eBay.”

You can predict what they’ll say with bullseye accuracy before you even read it.

And don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with any of these. In fact, starting a blog just might make you more money than anything you’ll ever do.

But it’s 2020, and the internet has evolved. There are now far more lucrative opportunities than driving Uber.

So let’s get some fresh ideas in here, shall we?

Here are three side hustles that can make you wealthy.

1. Turn your career into a consulting service

How to do it

Are you really, really good at your day job?

If the answer is “yes,” supercharge your income by turning it into a consulting service.

Here’s how.

First, choose an industry to target. The more specific, the better.

For example, if you’re a copywriter and your specialty is crafting sales emails, you might target B2B companies in the healthcare space. If you’re a programmer, you might target series A start-ups. Accountants could target legal firms, so on and so forth.

Next, brand yourself as an expert in your field. Not “expert” in a lackadaisical “I guess I’m good at my job” sort of way, but “expert” as in “top 1% of talent.”

Now create a website or landing page and sell your skills as a service (think consulting calls or freelance packages). Remember, you’re an expert in your field, so charge accordingly. That means a minimum of $60/hour.

Finally, drive leads through paid digital ads, word-of-mouth or organic social media.

Hint: on social media, teach your followers how to do what you do. This establishes you as an expert and will drive business to your service.

Congratulations, you’re a consultant now.

Who’s done it

One of the best examples of this is Michal Eisikowitz, a copywriting consultant who built her personal brand into a $3 million business by targeting agencies and corporations.

Why it’s great

Almost all of us can do this in some capacity without learning new skills. Simply take what you’re already doing at your day job and rebrand it as “consulting.”

Working for a company essentially ties your compensation to an industry standard. But position yourself as a highly-skilled consultant and you’ll find clients who are willing to pay significantly more.

2. Sell shirts on Etsy

How to do it

Create an Etsy store, connect it to a print-on-demand provider, then upload as many t-shirt designs as you can come up with.

Etsy’s market is predominately females in the 25–40 year old demographic, so to succeed, you’ll need to spend time browsing sites like Pinterest for design inspiration.

Hint: combine popular slogans (“I just want to drink wine and pet my dog,” “Go ask your father,” etc.) with trending designs, like these ultra-popular rainbows.

Every time you make a sale, the order will be forwarded directly to your print-on-demand provider, who will then print the shirt and ship it to your customer.

Since there’s no need to worry about inventory or manufacturing on your end, you’re free to create as many designs as possible. If you score a viral hit, you’ll be printing money on autopilot.

Note: I’ve tested a lot of print-on-demand companies and the only one I recommend is Printed Mint (not being paid to say this, nor am I an affiliate). They’re not cheap, but they’re relatively small so their quality is reliable. The same can’t be said for other companies like Printful or Printify.

Who’s done it

Check out SheSquatsClothing.

Since 2014, this apparel store has sold over 110,000 units through Etsy. If we estimate that each sale yields roughly $10 after expenses, that’s over $1.1 million in profit.

Why it’s great

Print-on-demand side hustles have been around forever, but few are taking advantage of the Etsy platform, which markets your products for you.

Unlike other most other marketplaces, Etsy brings potential customers to you through its recommendation features. Master Etsy SEO and you’ll never have to worry about navigating Facebook ads again.

3. Make memes

How to do it

First, create an Instagram account.

Next, study what’s trending in pop culture. Study which memes are popular.

Then, create new memes by fusing what’s trending with what’s popular. Post on Instagram, rinse, repeat.

Watermark your posts with your account name and make as many as possible. Everyone loves a good meme, so if you’re talented and funny, a few will eventually go viral.

This allows you to build a following faster than you’d be able to in most other social media niches.

Once you’ve acquired at least 50,000 followers, sell your own products (for example, @shitheadsteve has some hilarious NSFW products on their website), launch an original apparel brand or sell sponsored posts to other companies.

Who’s done it

A few weeks ago, a meme network headed by flagship account @daquan sold to Warner Music Group for a mind-blowing $85 million.

Why it’s great

Memes are hot right now.

Why did WMG pay so much for @daquan? Two reasons. First, they understand that memes dictate millennial and Gen Z culture. Controlling one of Instagram’s biggest meme accounts gives them access to invaluable consumer data.

Second, they can now use these accounts to make their songs viral hits. Combine a relatively unknown track with a trending meme and suddenly, everyone knows the song.

Bottom line: if you love pop culture and consider yourself witty, get in on the meme game. You just might have a multimillion dollar exit waiting for you down the road.

It’s time to think bigger

“Traditional” side hustles like filling out paid services and delivering for Postmates are great if you need quick cash.

But you can make significantly more money in the long run if you’re just willing to invest time and effort into building a brand.

Take advantage of this.

Figure out what you’re passionate about, then build a community, product or service around it. This will stack the odds of financial success in your favor.

Sign up for Takeaways, where I send out three tips I learned about wealth/productivity every week. Takes just one minute to read.

Comments / 0

Published by

Wordsmith. Growth hacker. Every week I email 3 things I learned about wealth/productivity. Sign up (it's free) 👇


More from Matt Lane

Comments / 0