2022 is coming to a close and I think it is a great time to start sharing what I have learned and the mistakes I have made along the way. To those of you that don’t know me, Hi my name is Edmund; Founder of HustleVentureSG, and at the age of 24, I was able to amass a networth of over $100,000 in 2021. Back then, I was working a full-time job and had a total of 3 different side hustles. They are options trading, NFT trading, and pet boarding. With that, I was able to make over $6,000 or more a month.
Now in 2022, times have changed and some of my side hustles don’t work either, so I created 5 new sources of income for myself. With my love for fishing, I have created an analogy story on how you can also follow in my footsteps toward creating a business. I hope that by the end of reading this article, you will learn how to better grow your income, and how I did it and at the end, I will be sharing how you can also build these sources of income.
The Strategy I use to Increase my Income
I took an unconventional way to increase my income, Instead of focusing heavily on increasing my income through a full-time job. I knew that if I am looking for a way to increase my income by more than 20% year on year, a full-time job will never get me there.
That is why I learn to build my income stream through creating and providing others with my service which I will elaborate on more below. The great benefit of providing a service to others is that your business revenue is controllable(in some sense). Unlike working for a full-time job where your income is different in proportion to the hours you worked.
Making Money through a Business
I wished someone has guide me sooner on this so that creating and making money from a business isn’t as hard as it seems. I was brought up by my parent who were hard workers. Although my dad was a businessman, he did not have many clients and was always struggling to look for one.
If that resonates with you, it may be that the strategy you are using to attract clients is wrong. Traditional business typically works like a fishing tournament. To catch a fish(clients), businesses have to use good bait(marketing ads or promotion) and a good fishing rod setup(company page) to reel in the fish. The problem with this business strategy is that you are always waiting for the next fish.
Learning from the mistakes my dad make, I read up heavily on the types of marketing strategies I should be using. In this digitalized age, it is a lot easier to find problems but hard to come up with concrete solutions. So, I make a resonating problem(like the paragraph above) to reach out to audiences with the same issue and share how my business can service their solution. Blasting out this information on the Internet is easy(social media does a lot of the work) and soon enough, clients start reaching out to me.
The big difference between my dad’s business strategy and mine is how we catch our fish. Instead of simply focusing on adding good bait and fishing rods, I focused heavily on knowing what fish I need to be catching to win the fishing tournament. The setup needs to be better, using a sonar detector(the Internet), a proper fishing rig(to catch the right audience), and the right bait and fishing rod. Although there will still be a waiting game, the time in between to catch another fish is a lot shorter.
Even with a good fishing setup, if the place that you are fishing has little to no fish, it doesn’t matter how well your fishing setup is. That is why finding problems you can address is critical for any business, which is one of my business rules. Which is “if your business doesn’t address or ease the problem for your client, it will not work.”
Why having Additional Income is better for you
The problem my dad had with his fishing strategy was that he only had a fishing rod setup, so the risk of not catching a fish is high. I knew that if I wanted to live comfortably, I had to set up as many fishing rods for myself as possible.
For that analogy, I created multiple relevant services that I can provide for my clients. That way, I knew that once a service is satisfied by my clients, I can refer my other services to him and the relationship can continue thereafter.
I realize after having been able to manage my customer retention better, they are more likely to refer my services and allow me to make additional income. By having more of this additional income, I feel more comfortable in my position to reinvest to grow the business.
What that Lesson has taught Me
Using the fishing analogy, the difference between my dad and I was the risk I took. Instead of getting that one best fishing rod, I focused on being able to catch multiple fish. Once that is secure, I am then able to get better rods. Like what Kelvin O Lary from Shark Tank said, use the interest to pay for your stuff.
The start of building additional income is tough. A $1,000 dividend investment with a 5% dividend only gives $50 annually. However, if your investment portfolio is worth $1,000,000, the dividend from that is worth $50,000. One true thing is that every additional income starts small but can compound sizeable once you gave it time.
Ideals that you are made to believe
With our economy becoming more digitalized, it is a lot easier to make money online. It’s crazy to know that people out there still feel that the Internet is just a place for scammers to thrive. They missed out on multiple opportunities the internet has to offer.
I grew up in a very conservative family, meaning my parents want me to focus on earning money through a 9-to-5. While that has failed terribly, it wasn’t all that bad. Throughout this year alone, I have learned that there are multiple ideals that we are made to believe that just aren’t true at all.
Invest as much as you can to retire early
There are many problems that our financial industry pushes their idealism on. For one, their idea on why you should focus on investing in the stock market and not in yourself. It makes it look like investing is the only way to “passively” make money.
Most of my new sources of income are somewhat passive and are not made through investing. The truth about money is that the more you can make a positive societal impact, the economy will reward you for that.
Your 20s are a golden year to build an income, so don’t take a risk
Everything that you do in life in some sense is inherently risky. What is unbelievable about how I was taught “risky” is learning to start a business, learning how to invest, and being entrepreneurial.
That’s crazy to me. The younger you are, the more risk you should take. There is a reason why over 99% of people are stuck in the rat race. They simply do not wish to take any risk and are comfortable with taking the drugs(salary). So if you don’t take enough risk, you will probably be stuck in the rat race longer than others.
Money is hard to make
I was taught since young that money does not come by easily. That is entirely not true at all, I realize that I was listening to that advice from people who are working for a salary instead of someone working in creating businesses. That person was my mentor and he share with me that the reason most people find that money is hard to make is that they do not have the mindset of creating services for others.
You see, everything that you know can be created into a service. If you are good at investing, you could share a tip or two. And if you are good at writing, you can provide a content writing service. My mentor taught me that making money is how well you can sell yourself(service).
My 5 Sources of Income
Learning from my successes and mistakes from the past, I created opportunities to make additional income for myself. If you have followed my content on HustleVentureSG for quite some time, you would know that my business has transitioned to focusing on side enterprises instead of solely investing.
This has played out quite well given that most investments have dropped following the news of recession fear. Here are the additional income sources that I have built-in 2022.
To those of you guys who know me personally, I am an INTJ. Which is part of the introvert spectrum. I hate to create conversations with others so my favorite way to convey myself is through text. This is why when I was 14 years old I started blogging as my way of sharing information.
During that time. I did not focus on making money. In 2022, I created HustleVentureSG to showcase my financial knowledge and help others pursue their passion for different kinds of the side hustle, and have made over $6,000 overall with November making $1,200. With my current trajectory, the business will hopefully be making over $2,000 per month or more by the end of 2023. Not bad considering that I have only spent less than a year building it. The reason for such quick income is that HustleVentureSG has multiple sources of income. They are as follows:
Advertisement revenue brings in one of the lowest incomes compared to the other services. However, it is the most passive way for me to be making an income. I make roughly $0.01 for every 10 visitors on the platform and if any visitor clicks on one of those ads, I make roughly $0.20 up to $1.20 per click.
As my traffic grew, I jump to another advertiser to grow my ad revenue. I started with WordPress ad revenue, then to Google Adsense, and finally to my favorite which is Ezoic. Which is a platform that beat most advertising platforms out there in the market. If you are looking to monetize your webpage, I would highly recommend Ezoic.
When I found a product or a service that I enjoy and if there is a referral, I would share my referral so that everyone can enjoy the same benefits. That is affiliate marketing in a nutshell. I have shared my affiliate on products such as shoes, headphones, and books and product affiliates such as content writing services and investment tools. If someone were to click or buy the product or service from your referral link, you can get a commission out of it.
Never in my life would I expect people out there to resonate with what I had to offer when I first started HustleVentureSG. But hey, that means you liked the content right?
Selling my Services
Apart from writing my content, I can use HustleVentureSG to promote my services. They are content writing, translation, SEO consultation, and guest posting. This has been my best income source for 2022 because of how high the demand was.
After 6 months after the launch of HustleVentureSG, the website started getting a good amount of traffic, and that was when other businesses started taking notice. Companies started providing us the opportunity with special referral links to promote their brand. For example, I enjoyed being a pet boarder and shared my story as a pet boarder. The company PetBacker reached out to me with their referral link so I can share it with you guys.
Guest posting for companies has been one of the most successful posts on the platform because others would like to know more about what our financial and side enterprise content has to offer.
Content Writing Service
The services started from me providing it on service platforms such as Fiverr and Upwork. Over time, I grew more confident with my content writing service and venture out to provide it to more people. Apart from this freelancing platform, HustleVentureSG now provides its content-writing service for others. This removes the money marketplace business model dependency from Fiverr and Upwork which allows me to earn higher revenue.
With more and more businesses needing to transition their businesses online, content writing will be one of the high-demand skills. If you are interested in writing content for others, be sure to start with Fiverr and Upwork.
Throughout 2020 and 2021, I have always been a high-growth investor. At that time, more than 80% of my investment was in Tesla stocks. Being a 24-year-old at that time, I knew I have at least a 10-year-long time horizon for my investment. As my networth grew, I began to venture into safer assets.
Dividend investing is my way of diversifying into safer assets the key factor in buying them was the dividend. With the looming recession, having a dividend stock will lower my stock’s volatility since most of the companies I invested in are in consumer staples and healthcare.
I am using my skill as a web designer, content writer, and SEO specialist. I decided to add my services and provide SEO consultation to businesses to help them to grow their business presence online. To my surprise, this service has been performing relatively well compared to some of my other services. And my reviews for all my work turned out to be exceptional which I genuinely am happy for.
If you are looking to build a website or want to know more about reaching out to more people, be sure to reach out to me and I will provide you with a detailed step-by-step guide as to how you can also build a high-traffic website.
How you can start this additional source of income for yourself too
As I learned to build multiple sources of income for myself, I realise the steps to doing them are all the same. Here’s how I would break it down if you want to know how to create multiple sources of income.
Step 1: Lower your spending
If you want to create a side hustle or a small business, there will always be an upfront capital and maintenance cost involved. You need to have at least 6 months of emergency funds. That way, you can be assured that if any financial problems may arise, you will be better prepared for these situations.
Step 2: Invest as much into yourself
This is the problem that most people faced, they don’t know what they should be investing in themselves. To them, it was simply paying for a degree to get higher-paying jobs. To grow your wealth, you will need to find ways to make money without being trapped by work hours.
The most important part of this section is getting your brain rewired to think independently. It’s no surprise that the best entrepreneur around the world knows how to create a successful business. Here is what makes them different which can be differentiated into 3 types of people that make money:
- the people who go there for the money; typically office worker
- the people who work for their passion; these people who got their dream job but are not free yet from the dollar or are usually not paid enough to live comfortably
- the people who are focused on working on their mission; are people who will make great economic changes to society because their mission is the drive that will attract people(investors, customers, and traffic)
Elon Musk, Founder of Tesla and SpaceX, always focuses the bulk of his time on creating finding the best mission statement. That way, employees and people will understand and be guided where the companies should and will be heading.
Step 3: Create the foundations
Once you understand the mission of the business, the next step is creating the platform that allows you to showcase the mission. As you start off, focus on trying to grow the business revenue.
Once it has reached a position where “your time is more important than the work”, that is when you should be outsourcing. I hired 2 freelancers (not comfortable with hiring full-time yet) to help with my mission in order for me to have more time to find ways to grow the business.
Step 4: Reinvest
When the company just started making its first dollar, don’t be crazy and spend it away. The priority is focusing on ways you should be reinvesting into the business. Most often, companies need to find ways for their business to integrate online. That’s because the online space is one of the best places for people to be making money.
In 2022, the global e-commerce report show sales rise to over 6.8 trillion, a 4x increase compared to 2014 with 1.4 trillion in sales. Businesses that wish to do better, should focus on using their free cash flow on advertising or improving their web system in order to draw in more sales through the platform.
Step 5: Create more additional Income
Now that you have created a money-printing business or income stream, the next step for you is to use the excess capital to find other business ventures. That’s what I did with my money to create now over 8 sources of income.
Key Takeaway when starting a Side Hustle for Additional Income
Throughout 2022, I have learned how powerful making money from the internet can be. With the digital revelation, finding a job online has become so much easier and there is no reason why you aren’t able to make money online. There are many platforms out there that allow you to be your own boss, running a pet boarding business, content writing agency, or social media marketing agency.
If you plan to work on a side hustle for additional income, you have to do deep-level research and most importantly, try it. Most people(especially the older folks and peers) will criticize you for trying because they “heard” from others that this or that business won’t be successful. However, if you have done all the research and have high conviction, all this will turn to noise and you will be able to focus on your mission better.
What I have Learnt from 2022 that is Worth Sharing
2022 is an entirely different ball game from 2020 and 2021. What works then may not work in todays market. And learning to evolve and always be ready for changes is important in order to be a successful entrepreneur. Here is the key lesson that I have learned:
Don’t chase Hype
The hype for NFTs, high-growth stocks, and meme stocks is gone now with the FED monetary tightening. Greed have all died with more and more of such over-leverage company collapsing one after another. With Crypto falling more than 80% and high-growth companies losing 60% of their value in 2022.
Although growth stocks are great for the long term, having a portion of your assets in safer, dividend-paying assets may not be such a bad thing either. With dividend-paying stock, there is flexibility for you to withdraw or re-invest depending on your financial situation.
Explore as many opportunities
I’ve always wanted to start my own business because I understand how dangerous it is to make money only by investing. I can better protect my assets by earning money from a variety of businesses because I have cash flow and am well diversified.
Although starting a business from scratch is a lot of work. I am more driven as a person to work even harder because I am able to put my soul into the business. So if I were to share to my reading this message, it would be to take the maximum amount of calculated risk that has multiple times of future benefits. Whether it is going to an options class, pursuing higher education, or courses that can improve you as a person.
Opportunities are endless if you are hungry enough to pursue it.
It is ridiculous to depend on Overtime for higher income
How often have you heard your colleague say “OT got more money”. Probably quite often if you are working in a corporate job. I thought that was crazy to me because I never liked the idea of trading my time for money. If I were to find a way to increase my income, it would be from my various side hustle or improving my skills to provide for the company.
Although I did not specify the amount I have made, I want my readers to not be limited by the money that I have made. That’s because many people visualize a person earning power from a side hustle that will only stay the same. These people need to understand that, unlike a full-time job, business earnings are able to compound every day as more people get to view the channel. Although all side hustle earnings start out small, they will one day rack up over time.
Your income must always increase yearly
I have talked to many people that said that they are comfortable with their current income. That’s crazy because with inflation at an all-time high, you better be making more than inflation, or else you will lose purchasing power. That said, your income should not be increased by 1 to 3%, that is a death wish to a growth mentality.
Expectations for 2023
Honestly, my gut feeling for 2023 is fearful. We are not yet feeling the effects of a recession but are already seeing the stock market or real estate market crash. People are still living their daily life, going on holiday trips, and spending on concert tickets.
Maybe it is just me but I am optimistic about the future. During times like this, I will be focusing on diversifying risk and increasing income as much as possible.