Entertainment is a vital aspect of an individual’s and community’s life alike. It is the reason we find ourselves going out of our way only to practice something which does not appear to have an immediate positive outcome in our everyday. If so, what is it that makes hobbies so entertaining that we render them worthy of our time and efforts?
Generally, hobbies can offer an essential link in the evolutionary chain of survival – that of positive emotions. Through feeling pride and affection, we increase our biological capabilities of coping with fear and danger. From a more cultural slant, hobbies have the important responsibility of engaging our free time and thus, their development has a direct impact on our personal qualities such as patience and persistence.
Once we are aware of our abilities to perform certain activities better than others, a logical questions arises: How to make money from a hobby? Despite all of our doubts, 2019 is here to prove that the new media has the power to reward our efforts and turn hobbies into stable earning opportunities.
Reflect on your skills
Research suggests that people struggle when asked to evaluate their own skillset. This is not because we are too humble or too cocky but because assessing your own behaviour is much harder than that of your fellows. Nevertheless, learning to build a rational judgement of your development will help you direct your efforts at the right place.
Once you have decided that you can earn a living through your hobby, consider the following:
- What is unique about the way you practice your craft? Can you offer something new to the market?
- What do you need to still work on in order to master the technology behind your hobby?
- Would people be interested in paying to receive the service or product you offer to them?
Even though in the beginning these might seem to be a deal-breaker, remember that it is up to you to market your skill in a way that sells. Everything else is a matter of practice.
Come up with a monetization model
As we briefly mentioned, to monetize something means to find your unique voice in what you do. This is entirely dependant on the hobby itself – as you can guess, video-editting and stitching require entirely different strategies.
First and foremost, consider the outcome of your practice: whether it’s a service or a product. This is important because monetizing services will usually entail a lengthier relationship with the end customer. Also digital and physical products and services require a different approach.
When it comes to digital products and services, such as stock-photographs, coding, or graphic design, you might consider creating a portfolio website. This will allow you to showcase your work and have prospective customers contact you directly for inquiries and orders.
On the other hand, physical products such as prints, paintings, and clothing, perform best on e-Commerce websites where users can browse through a product page and order the item of their choice. This will also facilitate your shipping and payment options and will not require any third-party platforms to complete users’ orders.
Create a website
Many people are hesitant when it comes to creating a website and that is mainly due to two fears.
First of all, there is a widely popular misconception that creating a website inevitably involves coding and programming skills. This is not only avoidable but is also entirely untrue when it comes to WordPress and other content management systems where you can make use of already created themes and plugins.
The second fear people have is large financial investments which can be risky and turn out not beneficial in the long run. As we have discussed multiple times, free hosting allows users to create websites completely free of charge for an unlimited time period. This means that you could potentially maintain your website for twenty years and not pay a single dime for it.
As already said, your marketing strategy can turn out to be the difference between a profittable business and a failed endeavor. What’s essential here is discovering the identity your hobby has can developing a unique voice for what will later be known as your brand. This uniqueness is not only a matter of wording but also should be ingrained in your mindset as a creator and a businessman. And that’s a combination to die for!
Another aspect of your marketing is your work directed towards external of your own website entities. This includes social media and search engine optimization. While social media has an immediate effect on the overall engagement with your brand, it can also help you drive traffic to your website. This, combined with on-page SEO strategies has the capacity to generate quality audience emotionally invested in your work.
Hobbies don’t become hobbies because we are immediately good at them. The very first stitch is usually crooked, the first design project is usually silly, and the first photograph is usually overexposed. They become hobbies because we don’t give up. We make a thousand more stitches, designs, and photographs to prove to the world and most importantly, to ourselves that we can do it and it will be worth it.
Approaching all beginnings with a mindset like this can turn ridiculous and shaky attempts into an exquisite and masterful work. Earning money doing what proved that you are capable of growth, is a reason to be proud of yourself. And here is to yet another beginning, that of a beautiful 2019, where persistence can and does pay off.