At the beginning of 2012, I took what became a life-altering step in my business: I began separating my income from the number of hours in each day. In this post I will share eight ways to make more money. I pursued all eight last year and would love for you to make 2013 the best year ever for your business by picking at least one or two of these revenue boosters and acting on them.
Let me start by putting on my Captain Obvious cape and insulting your intelligence with a simple observation: The work that makes you money today isn't necessarily the work that will make me money in the future. Robert Kiyosaki taught me that a job is not an asset. Assets put money in your pocket even when you're not working. Jobs don't.
For this reason, new assets are preferable to new jobs or clients. If you want to grow your income over the next six months, you need to prioritize creating or acquiring assets. You need to dedicate some or most of your immediate bandwidth to paying yourself in the future.
To better "enforce" this often difficult habit, I split up my day.
Mornings go to creating assets, and afternoons, to doing my "job," which is billable project work for clients. The most precious commodity is, of course, time. By freeing up more time (while still managing to pay all my family's bills), I have been able to invest more focus, creativity, and gumption in creating assets.
I now actively scan my workload for to-dos, activities, and projects to delegate as quickly as possible! I pay other people to be "in the weeds" so that I can envision a more prosperous future and plan backwards.
For example, I now hire other writers to do research and compose first drafts. First drafts often represent the most time consuming and least rewarding phase of the project, and I am at my best during the final phase of editing and polishing. After I managed to swallow some of my professional and artistic elitism, I found that my clients are happy, my contractors are happy, and my bank account is happy. And I only have to do the parts that I enjoy the most.
I was insane to wait so long. The definition of sanity is doing something different and expecting different results, and "different results" often come in the form of juicy profits.
But hiring contractors is just one of several ways to make more money:
- Hire contractors. You can find talented creative professionals who can do your projects nearly as well as (or better than) you. If you know where to look, you can find folks who will charge you only a small percentage of what you charge your clients. Swallow your pride, recruit some help, and do "quality control" before sending anything over to your clients. You'll find that you sleep better when you have multiple people available to do the fulfillment.
- Hire employees to increase the potential number of billable hours. Even if hiring a full-time employee requires a lot of training, you'll smile six weeks from now when you can forward a client request to your new guy or gal and say, "Do this." You can then go back to dreaming and planning or playing Clash of Clans.
- Increase your hourly rate. If you can bill fewer hours and still pay the bills, then you can spend more time on diversifying your business. When is the last time you raised your rates? If it's been more than 12 months, then I suggest acting on this one immediately. Fact: I've never lost a client after raising my rates. If you do a good job at communicating the value of what you do, you'll likely have the same experience.
- Create a membership or continuity program online. This is what Jon, Nate, and I did with Kicktastic. We realized that we could help more people if we found a convenient way to deliver our business training. We're constantly improving and tweaking the "publishing platform," or delivery system, and will soon be in the position to start selling a vanilla version of it to other people who need a convenient way to share their expertise and build a tribe.
- Create products or services that sell while you sleep or travel. I have now created 7 iPhone apps and have another 8 in development. If you're not interested in apps, then you could quickly create an information product, such as a guide or video series, and deliver it digitally to customers via ejunkie.com or 1ShoppingCart.
- Set up retainer relationships that inject the same amount of cashflow into your business each month. Getting your business out of feast-or-famine mode is one of the best ways to get back to dreaming big about the future. Believe it or not, some of your clients would probably be open to giving your more money, more often. Do you see unmet needs? Do you see untapped potential? Come up with a plan for your favorite clients, and then sit down to pitch them on a retainer relationship for making it happen. This is also a great way to create the cashflow necessary to keep contractors or employees.
- Negotiate equity stakes in startups. A friend couldn't afford to pay my full project management fee for app development so we negotiated an equity stake in the app's revenues. She was able to compensate me fairly this way, and I was able to say yes to an exciting project that would otherwise have been unprofitable. And the equity stake will end up earning me significantly more than I ever would have made for services rendered!
- Sell other people's stuff and earn commissions. Last June, I signed up to be an affiliate for an app training program called App Elite. I was able to sell three memberships at make $3000 in commissions. One of the men who purchased the program through my affiliate link was a complete stranger from South Africa! You never know what kind of money other people can make you until you try.
Enough talky talk…go put these eight ways to make more money into practice!
Can you think of more? Share in the Comments section below!