Blogging Takes Time
If you haven’t heard of it yet, blogging is very powerful in many ways. There are thousands of bloggers today, that make a very good income through their blogs.
The beauty of it, is that anyone can start a blog within seconds and they are free to let their inner writer out, discuss ideas, tell stories, help people and many other things.
What people fail to realize however, is that once you start a blog, you’ll need a lot of patience. Blogs don’t kick off instantly.
A lot of promotion and work is needed for them to go viral. Even after several link building strategies, it may take a few months before you see traffic coming in,
That’s why you shouldn’t waste your time blogging daily, but instead start a side project whilst you do so.
You don’t need to be a blogger necessarily to start a side project but I know that blogging can seem like a waste of time and it’s one of the main reasons people give up!
Here’s what you’ll learn from this post:
- See case studies of side projects and what they’ve done for blogs and businesses
- The results that came out of these side projects
- What other uses side projects bring to your life and business
- Reasons why you too should start a side project right now!
While you should always keep your focus on your main job, blog or business, I will try to highlight and show you why it is wise to start something on the side.
You’ll see what comes out of it and what it did to me personally!
Just note that, if I wouldn’t have had little side projects along my life, I would have never stumbled on the little gem called Wealthy Affiliate and this blog wouldn’t exist.
As you may have seen or read about in my monthly income reports, or throughout my general posts, I always mention that I have other things brewing on the side.
I don’t actually give away what I’m doing, but eventually the process and every step gets documented on my blog, once I’m done with it.
The interest in having side projects didn’t just start when I created my blog and got interested in affiliate marketing. I’ve actually always tried out side projects.
When I was in college/university I constantly tried to come up with innovative ways to make a bit of a side income.
I always dreamed of wealth and studying didn’t pay me. I was bored a lot of the time in class. Instead of teaching me things I wanted to know I had to learn several subjects.
Usually I would have 1 interesting module and 3 that were completely irrelevant to me.
I went tried out several things but never really pulled anything through until the end. Then I got my first job….
Not even a month into my job I got bored and wanted to do something on the side to speed up the wealth process.
So I informed myself about investing into the stock market and quickly grew a passion for real estate as well. I started:
- listening to podcasts on my way to work.
- reading articles on investing
- success stories and how they started off
- opening an investment account
- researching locations to buy properties
And that went on for a while. I still inform myself about these subjects and actually invest into them as well. But those are long term goals.
When I switched jobs, I made a realization, that working a 9-5 won’t get me to where I want to be, so I decided to create my own company with a friend of mine as a side project.
It was a coffee-van business (originally to be a burger van but laws didn’t allow us to do so at that time).
Although it started off incredibly profitable, more and more issues kept rising up and my energy couldn’t keep up with it.
As I am naturally resilient, I didn’t give up with side projects and ventured out and discovered the power of the internet…
Suddenly it all made sense. I was always fascinated with technology and the internet connects the entire world and almost every human being.
It’s like a giant market or place, where everyone is a potential customer.
This is where my new side project started (my blog and affiliate marketing) and it quickly became my main focus!
As mentioned in the beginning, blogging takes a while to pick up. I am also naturally incredibly impatient and love to see quick results.
After about 3-4 months into blogging I started reading more about online marketing and other ways to make money online.
This led to other side projects popping up besides my blog:
- I researched other affiliates took pieces of their successes and created a micro site with my own touch to it.
- I started learning about the power of social media and tested out the best way to get followers.
- I found out people make a living and helping out others by creating eBooks so I started writing my own.
- I learned that networking is one of the most powerful tools (even outside the internet) so I made a bunch of new valuable connections with other bloggers and super affiliates.
Almost every month I see new potential in other areas. Some of these are directly linked to my blog, others are just simply great opportunities in life.
These little side projects don’t always end up successful but they always teach me a valuable lesson.
For instance, my coffee-van business may have failed, but it taught me all the knowledge I need to create a business. The legal side, the financial side and the professional side.
It also taught me I never want to go into a food related business again, if it means that I have to be directly involved.
As for the other smaller side projects:
- The micro side made over $2,000 in 3 months. That was about 5-10 hours work for me (if I include all the research and creating the actual site into account). The website was also evaluated at $12-$15,000 if I’d sell it as of this point.
- I’ve got several thousand followers across my social media platforms now. Eventually could use this to my advantage if I continue growing.
- I never thought I could write a book. My eBook’s already written, I’m just learning about the best way to publish this and need to figure out the legal side of it as well.
- I’ve now got valuable super affiliates as friends and landed a side project to work with Neil Patel (you can see the full post here).
But besides my own side projects, have a look at other successful people who constantly come up with innovative and new side projects:
Timothy Sykes for instance continuously makes an incredibly profitable income, year after year through penny stock trading.
Although he has millions and has a transparent trading record, he went back to his initial investment of $12,415 and is currently growing it to $1 million again.
His main focus is teaching his method of trading to others to trade but teaching was once a side project.
It is now his most profitable income and most rewarding one (mentally) as well as it feels good to give back to others.
Another great example is Neil Patel, who constantly has new side projects as well.
Besides having many successful businesses, he started creating a blog to gain 100k visitors a month and showing exactly which steps he takes to reach it, on the blog itself.
Needless to say he succeeded in just about under a year.
Now he repeats the process by creating a website that makes $100k/ month with someone who isn’t experienced or known in the field of online marketing.
It shows that through side projects, not only aren’t you wasting your time with blogging and hoping for something to go viral, you’re also creating something that could be valuable to earn a side income.
What other results can come out of little side projects? There are actually more than you think.
As mentioned above, you can possibly make a bit (or a lot) of extra cash. Who doesn’t want more money right?
My main blog is currently making about $80-$100/ month. It isn’t much but it’s growing (we’ve established that it takes time to grow by now…).
Without my micro sites and other projects, I would have never made over $1,000 in such a short time.
But besides the money reasons, there are other things you gain from testing out new things.
Take my case for example… by creating all these new social profiles and gathering thousands of followers, I managed to get a lot more traffic on my main blog.
Every time I finish a post, I share it on my social platforms. I get a couple of hundred views because of that currently.
By having side projects, I can tap into different niches and gain other viewers, a new audience and new followers.
The snowball keeps growing and keeps gaining more mass.
And finally, myself as well as the other given case studies, are perfect examples of people gaining a lot more credibility through their projects.
People always say that Tim Sykes was lucky he started investing and trading in penny stocks when he did because it was easier back then, the market was more predictable and he couldn’t do it again.
As a matter of fact he did do it again and he’s now doing it once more.
The same goes for Neil Patel. I often read comments, that he’s only able to get 100k views a month because he made a name for himself by now.
That’s why he got someone completely inexperienced and a completely random niche to grow that website to $100k/ month.
If he succeeds, you can’t really say much more against his methods.
It is the same reason I am completely transparent and show when I have massive drops from $1,000/ month to less than $100/ month.
I was even considering to sell my micro site just to keep up the great constant record breaking months, but that would be stupid. So now I’m trying to make it work again.
Once I do I will teach my strategies in my blog and further increase my credibility towards my audience!
What’s important to note at this point, is that you should always keep a main focus. My main focus is still my blog. I can’t wait for one of my income reports to show $100k.
But in the meantime I try out different things.
There are many things that may shift from your initial focus and maybe your true passion only gets revealed through side projects.
But being impatient and wanting the next get rich quick scheme is always a deadly combination. Taking action is the first step and staying focused is another.
Here’s a very great list by Temper Thompson, an inspiring figure who’s only 17 years old and makes more money in a month than most adults in a year.
(Hint: His fortune started with a side project as well)
Another great use of having side projects, is to brand yourself. Make a name for yourself and show your achievements.
You may have noticed some blogs show where they’ve been featured. Bloggers like to do this quite a lot.
Below you can find Matthew Woodwards features which he posts on the top menu for people to see.
Another example can be seen below by Elna Cain. This instantly get’s new readers attention and shows that they’re the real deal.
It also helps you get gigs such as guest posts for other known blogs for instance.
You can also add your achievements on your LinkedIn profiles or in your ‘about me‘ page by introducing yourself with “founder of” or “as seen on”.
Another great use of these side projects are the experiences you get to make. You can report them back, the way I like to do, and use them as case studies.
Help others to avoid your mistakes or learn from your mistakes and repeat the process to make it succeed.
The great part about it being a side project, is that you don’t have to shift the focus from your main blog.
That way you don’t lose followers suddenly, who were interested at first but thought you became too confusing and random.
If your blog is about dog training and suddenly you’re talking about the best way to bake an apple pie, people will most likely think your blog makes no sense and is pointless.
If however you start a side project about baking and it starts getting a lot of traction, you can separate the two blogs and gain from both.
Ali Mese goes into more detail how other companies made great experiences with their side projects and how they actually helped fuel their initial business.
You can pretty much test anything you think might be good for business and if it is, you add it without damaging your empire. This brings me to my last point…
The main reason I would encourage anyone to start a side project is the following…
If I would have never started a side project, I would never have shifted away from my 9-5 and I would never have realized the potential the online world offers.
Huge companies like Google actually encourage their employees to have a side project. See for yourself here!
It tends to increase their productivity and I can tell from experience I feel more productive writing my blog posts when I had a break and did something different.
It is often because of my side projects, that I get inspired and come up with new ideas for articles to write and post on my blog.
Additionally I cant stress enough at how little risk these side projects have and how hugely rewarding they can be (remember my micro site, Tim Sykes and Neil Patels example?).
You can discover yourself by these projects and possibly find out what your true passions or expertise are.
His main focus was to become an actor and he started his channel creating pranks as a side project!
Never forget your main goal but try out things. They don’t have to consume your entire time, that’s why they’re called ‘side projects’. You never know what comes out of it.
Keep that in mind. I hope you consider giving yourself this chance and opportunity, because if you don’t, your life will never change.
Of course it doesn’t have to, but like I always say, if you want something to change, you have to start with yourself.
I hope you enjoyed this post!