Hey hobbyists, did you know you could turn your hobby into full-time income?
Yes, it can be done. Baking cookies, playing poker on the weekends, knitting scarves are all examples of fun hobbies that can be monetized pretty easily. Is your interest peaked? Read on to learn how you make your hobby work for you and possibly even replace your 9 to 5! Let’s dive in:
What Hobbies Earn Money
Just about any hobby can earn you money. Think about how rewarding it would be to explore your passion and get paid for it! Here’s a list of hobbies you could easily monetize:
- Drawing or painting
- Graphic design
- Creating videos
- Social media
- Flower arrangements
- Cake decorating
These are just a handful of examples. Here’s how you can evaluate how to go from hobby to small business.
Step 1.) Think about how you can sell your hobby
This goes beyond selling a product. Many hobbies provide great service-related income. You can teach, coach, consult or do freelance work like video editing, writing, graphic design, etc. Explore this well and really think it out. How about creating a course, or e-book on how to do your hobby. After all your the expert!
Step 2.) Ask yourself if you have an audience
Are there people that are also interested in your hobby? Can you sell to them? If you belong to any hobby Facebook groups or community groups, participate in any hobby forums of chat groups, then the answer is yes.
Step 3.) Create a plan
Put together an action plan for how you will run your hobby business. Some questions to ask yourself:
- Will I do all the work myself or hire employees?
- Will I store products, materials, etc. in my home or need to get a storage space?
- How will you sell? Ex. Flea markets, consignment shops, online, Craigslist, etc.
Put it all on paper. Write your goals and check back often to make sure you are meeting your targets.
Step 4.) Start selling
As an entrepreneur and a former hobbyist turned small biz owner, my best advice is to dive in! Don’t overthink things too much. There may never be the perfect set of circumstances you have in mind to start your business. Jump in with both feet and make a big splash!
You are still doing your hobby, you’re just getting paid for it now!
Selling Your Hobby
This can be done a number of ways, offline and online. Some offline examples include:
- Door to door selling
- Consignment shops
- Selling in local boutiques
- Craft fairs
- Flea markets
For online selling, check these out:
- Your private online store
- Marketplaces (like Etsy, eBay, Amazon, Bonanza, etc.)
- Freelance markets (like Upwork or Freelancer)
You will want to establish your business form. More on that here. And also name your business. Fun stuff, right?
Next, you want to promote like crazy!
How to Promote Your Hobby Business
Reach out to your network first. Contact any groups you belong to and share your business venture. You’ll get support and sales! Tell your friends and family, drop business cards at local businesses, and set up business social media accounts.
Setting Up Your Business Social Media
First, you want to treat it like a business. So, your business social media accounts are going to be different from your personal account. And once you’ve set up these business pages treat them professionally. You might not post what you had for dinner, pictures from your daughter’s school play, or photos of your cat.
Keep it business and keep it professional. Now, that does not mean you can’t share your personal side. A healthy dose of that actually helps but remember it’s your business.
Social Media Account Must Haves
These ones above are the basics. There are many more so don’t be afraid to try others like Reddit, Digg, We Heart It, Yummly, etc.
Tips for Social Media Success
- Fill out your profile
- Add a photo (business logo preferably)
- Post regularly
- Interact and engage with your audience
- Comment, like and give feedback to other social media accounts
- Make it fun
Building an online presence will be a HUGE part of your success, even if you’re offline! Social media will help take you there!
Tips for a Successful Hobby Business
These helpful tips will help you stay on track and (hopefully) stay in business:
- Keep goals in mind. Make sure they are measureable and track them often. (A business plan is even better!)
- Keep it fun. It is your hobby, after all.
- Get to know your customer. Engage, engage, engage.
- Keep an eye on business finances.
- Be consistent.
- Don’t forget about social media.
- Tell your friends and family to spread the word.
Need some inspiration? Check out these millionaire businesses that started out as hobbies:
Green Daisy, started in 2002, began as pillow sales out of a truck! Within 2 years, Green Daisy pillows were in national chain stores. (Entrepreneur)
Sophia Amoruso, the mind behind Nasty Gal, a women’s fashion clothing store, started on Ebay selling vintage items. Years later her net worth is $10 Million and have you seen her Netflix series?
Have you heard of Darn Good Yarn? The creator left the Air Force, combining her two passions: helping others and art, forming her yarn company. She’s now an importer, wholesaler, and retailer! (OPEN Forum)
Now, this is the ultimate Hobby to full-time business, The Chicken Chick!
Going from hobbyist to business owner is a challenging and rewarding feat. If you have hobbies that you’d love to monetize, take it seriously. Treat it like a business and dive deep to turn your dream into reality. Keep researching the successful people and emulate their success until its your own. Good luck!