Want to learn how to create multiple income streams for your online business?
Having various income streams is one of the best moves you can make for your financial future.
Simply put–if you only have one income stream, you're putting all your eggs in one basket. If that one basket gets obliterated for any reason, well, so does your income.
It's really easy to become dependent on one main source of income, especially if it's well-paying. However, no matter how safe or reliable it may seem, it can disappear in the blink of an eye leaving you with zero…zilch…nada.
This is the precise reason that I built a business that encompasses a wide variety of revenue streams that come in from different sources. My income is not dependent on any one thing (even though some income streams bring in more money than others).
So…how can you diversify your income as a creative entrepreneur?
While there are certainly many ways to diversify your income (coaching, freelancing, etc.), I thought it would be most appropriate for me to discuss my top three income streams with you and my personal thoughts on those particular income streams.
(Please note: This post contains affiliate links to products I use and love.)
1. Affiliate Marketing
Some people get immediately turned off when you start talking about affiliate marketing. Either they think it's too time-consuming or they don't really look at it as a valid business model because you're promoting someone else's products rather than your own.
But I know plenty of people making a full-time, hefty income promoting other people's products. Believe-you-me, it's as real a business model as any…with real pay.
Here's how I use affiliate marketing as an additional income stream:
When I really like a product or service that I am already using, I look into becoming an affiliate for that product or service and sharing it with others.
It's typically a very natural flow for me to promote it because I can speak about the benefits from a first-hand perspective. In most cases, I can even show a live tutorial of how I use the product and how it benefits me. This further builds credibility for the product, and makes the sale more likely.
For instance, I promote the web hosting provider I use, the email marketing service I use, and even the website theme designers that I love…just to name a few.
There's nothing wrong with promoting other people's businesses and getting paid for it, especially when it's a product or service that you truly have faith in and believe that others can benefit from as well.
Here are four of my favorite affiliate marketing resources that will help you get started:
2. Publishing Books
Making money from published books is a great income stream and typically an easier one that you can tackle as an entrepreneur (seriously, you can knock-out writing a good non-fiction book in as little as a week if you focus…trust me…I've done it.)
But did you know that this income stream can be diversified even further? Here's what I mean…
As a self-published author, I have the capability to publish multiple different formats of my books to be accessed by different people with different learning preferences. I can publish:
- paperback books
- hardcover books
- pdf books
- and even audio books
Here's an example of just one of my books in 3 different formats: Audio, E-Book, and Paperback…
I get paid for the e-book version when readers purchase it flat out or borrow it from an electronic library. I get paid a separate payment from those people who opt for the paperback version of the book. And yes…I also get paid when someone decides to listen to the book on audio.
Just a few years back, most of these options would have only been available to those with traditional publishing contracts or ridiculous amounts of expendable income to spend on third-party services to make it happen. Now, more than ever before, we have affordable options at our fingertips which allow self-publishers to diversify our book publishing income and better serve our readers with multiple formats.
3. Teaching Online Courses
My income from teaching online courses typically surpasses my book publishing income. If this surprises you, let me quickly explain why this is the case.
Generally speaking, an online course has a higher perceived value than a book. While you may get away with charging $20 for a book, these same people would likely be willing to pay $50 or $100 for the same exact content presented in course format. This is because they believe that the value they will receive from the course will be much higher due to a higher engagement level.
While publishing books can give you credibility and authority in your niche, teaching is a fantastic way to build trust and better interact with your customers/readers. So personally, and as an online instructor, I agree that the value is higher with a course because I tend to have a much higher engagement level with my students/readers than I would with just a book.
I think that many writers and authors write off this potential income source because they think it's too difficult to get started or that creating their own course will be very expensive or even because they don't believe they have anything worth teaching.
I can nearly guarantee you that getting started is easier than you think; that the startup cost for creating your first course can be extremely affordable depending on what resources you tap into; and that every single one of you have something you know that you can teach to others. I tell my students this: You only have to be one step ahead of the person you are teaching to add value. One step ahead can make you the expert.
Platforms like Thinkific, Teachable, Skillshare.com, Udemy.com, and countless others make creating and publishing an online course easier than it's ever been. You can even turn one of your books into an online course! I've done it before, and I know for sure that other authors can replicate the process and do the same!
If you're interested in learning how to plan your digital product, click here for my 6-step planning process.
So, there you have it folks! Several ways to diversify your income as a creative entrepreneur and scale up your business!
While I do believe in having multiple income streams, I must acknowledge that juggling too many income streams at one can become quite overwhelming. Monitoring and maximizing each stream of income takes time. Start with one main income stream and one supplemental income stream. Master those, and then scale up from there.
Hit reply and let me know the following: Which income streams have you considered? Which have you already started? What is the #1 thing that's standing in the way of your success?