Finding Ways To Earn More Money

Posted on 06. Dec, 2011 by in Business Wealth, Entrepreneurship

Money making business

Hello, could I interest you some freshly picked mandarins?  They taste really nice and only cost two dollars a bag.

As kids, my brothers and I were always looking for ways to create a money making business.  We used to try selling random stuff to people on our street, we picked mandarins off the tree at home and went door to door, we dug plants up out of the garden and stuck them into pots and drink containers then set up a stall out the front of the house.  Basically we tried pretty much anything we could think of to turn a buck.

It’s all funny stuff when I think about it now, but the tactics we employed as kids to make money really don’t differ to the approach I would take as an adult today.  You can get as complicated as you like about marketing, but the principles of sales are really very simple.  If you apply them to something you are already good at or have access to, then you have an excellent chance of success.

Have a Unique Offering

I love the whole entrepreneurship thing, but for some reason these days I tend to get hung up on the thought that in order to create a money making business, I need to come up with a new idea.  I’m not sure why this is, I guess I like the idea of originality, but as a kid I had no problem with trying to sell fruit that someone could just go and buy at the store.

A unique offering doesn’t need to be new, it just has to be a little different.  My brothers and I could have tried selling mangoes door to door (in fact we probably did), but we lived in the tropics and everyone had a mango tree.  What most people didn’t have was a mandarin tree in their backyard, so mandarins became our unique offering.

If you want to see a great example of a unique offering that isn’t that unique, but has been super successful, go and check out this post by Benny Hsu.  I completely take my hat off to this guy and admire his determination to succeed.

Find Your Value Proposition

Basically this is what makes people buy your product, it could be uniqueness, quality, quantity, service or price.  Usually this is pretty dependent on what you are selling, but it is important you get it right.  in the case of our mandarins it was fresh fruit delivered at good price.  I’d say there were a few other factors influencing the value proposition, but we’ll get to that in a moment.

In order to find your customer and then make a sale, you need to understand what it is they want then deliver it again and again.  There are plenty of people that offer similar services all over the world, but the successful ones understand what the customer wants and make it very easy for them to get it.  No matter what you decide to sell, your value proposition needs to hit the mark in order for you to succeed.

Execution of The Sale

I think that it is probably fair to say that the successful sale of our mandarins as kids was less due to their fresh and cheap nature and more to do with the fact that they were being sold by a bunch of kids.

I doubt a bunch of adults would have as much luck selling fruit, or any luck at all for that matter.  This doesn’t mean we didn’t have a money making business, what it means is that the execution of the sale required a unique offering and (arguably) an inflated value proposition delivered by a sales team that was very hard to say no to.

Some people are better than others at selling, but just about anyone can make this work if they want to, you just need to find something that suits your style.

Selling Products

Many people find it easiest selling products rather than services.  There really isn’t a big problem with this if it is your preference, but it can reduce your margins.  Our fruit was free while it lasted, but when it was gone, we no longer had a product.  If you sell products, make sure you have continuous supply.

Examples of products that you can sell are:

Something you already make if you have a creative hobby

I’ve seen more than one Facebook page selling knitted clothes and other cute kids bits and pieces that people just rave about and often the outlay to set up this kind of operation is minimal.

Stuff you have at home and don’t use anymore

Some people are really great at this and even take it to the next level by buying stuff at lawn sales and second hand stores and then listing it on eBay.  If you have a shopping bug yourself, this could be a good way to scratch the itch and make money at the same time.

Selling Services

Selling services is a little different, often there is no physical product.  This can be good because it means you don’t generally run out and you can usually offer more of them, it can however be a bit harder to push your value proposition as you are essentially selling yourself.  Many of the most successful bloggers operate in this way and the rewards can be significant.  Your service doesn’t need to be online though, it just needs to be something that people want and value.

If you want to try offering services, these ideas may help get you thinking:

Offer home services

People hate cleaning, in fact they hate anything that is a chore and takes time away from them being able to do something else.  If you are handy with a scrubbing brush, iron, lawn mower or can offer any other service that relieves others of doing chores, then there is a good chance you can get paid for it.

Start a boot camp

Not a fitness nut? That’s ok, it doesn’t need to be about fitness.  People have other needs too, you just need to sell your service the right way.  What about an intensive photography boot camp, or one on blogging, or arts and craft?  Identify what you are good at, then find your audience (maybe you could offer it as an adult night class?).  There is always something you can do, I’ve heard about people running chicken plucking classes… seriously!

Start a blog or try your hand at online freelance services

Setting up a blog is easy, it’s what comes after that is the difficult bit.  If you think you have a good online service and want to grow an audience, then perhaps it is for you.  If you just want to offer an e-based service (graphics, writing, programming etc.), then list your service online.  There are plenty of places to do this, try oDesk, Elance, or post an advert on some relevant forums and build your business base from there.

The list really is endless and if you take the time to think about it, I’m sure you will be able to think of something that fits best for you.  Starting is the hardest part, but once you start it will get easier.  Unless you have a mountain of debt, that little money making business of yours will start spitting out money that you are free to spend as you please.  Sounds tempting doesn’t it?

What is your money making business idea?

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22 Responses to “Finding Ways To Earn More Money”

  1. krantcents

    07. Dec, 2011

    I am trying to make my blog successful and then I expect it will be the basis for other opportunities. Books, speaking, etc.

    • Money Cactus

      08. Dec, 2011

      From what I have seen you are going the right way about it!

  2. [email protected]

    07. Dec, 2011

    One aspect you haven’t mentioned is stickiness.

    This usually comes with services but can apply to goods as well. In other words, get customers who become permanent and come back rather than just depending on what is effectively passing trade.

    Your mandarin selling exploits were excellent for a kid earning pocket money but next week, your customers may buy from someone else or go to the store.

    People can become entrepreneurs but mostly they will exhibit that ability at a young age and have made their pile by the time the rest of us catch up!

    Otherwise at @kc says, make the blog pay! But that also takes a lot of work ….

    • Money Cactus

      08. Dec, 2011

      Hey John,

      Good point. I think this may fall under your value proposition, but it is very important to consider how you will get return business.

  3. Benny

    07. Dec, 2011

    Thank you for the mention in your post!

    • Money Cactus

      08. Dec, 2011

      Hey Benny,

      Thanks for visiting and more than happy to mention you, I really love what you have been able to achieve.

      Keep up the great work.

  4. Nice post! I do quite a bit of ‘side hustle’ things that get me extra income. I blog, teach, and am in the process of starting up a small business selling a particular item I make, and am getting into rentals in the near future. None of these things comes close to equaling my main income, but I get a thrill out of making extra money anyway.

    • Money Cactus

      08. Dec, 2011

      I think enjoyment is often worth more than payment, but it is nice to get a few extra dollars as well. Diversification works well, have you seen the income report by Pat Flynn at Smart Passive Income this month? He made over 40K in sales, with income from a lot of different sources…. pretty sweet!

  5. Aaron Hung

    08. Dec, 2011

    blogging is the only thing I do as far as side gig goes…I’m slowly building my stocks investments though

    • Money Cactus

      08. Dec, 2011

      Hey Aaron, if it is what you are good at and what you love, then it is perfect for you.

  6. Great tips. The hard part for me would be coming up with the product. I have lots of ideas but I am not sure what one will actually sell well and make some money.

    • Money Cactus

      08. Dec, 2011

      I have exactly the same problem. The best thing to do is test the one you have the most interest in, because it usually takes a lot of work and you have to stay motivated. Have you read the 4 Hour Work Week? There are some good examples of how to test your ideas in there.

  7. alanc230

    08. Dec, 2011

    Several years ago, I put together a proposal for an adult night class and submitted it to a local college. I was accepted to give the class. I was paid for it, and my students felt they received a good value. I was also able to promote an additional related service, that several of them later bought.

    • Money Cactus

      12. Dec, 2011

      Hey Alan,

      Nice work on the up sell. It’s amazing how one opportunity can create another isn’t it?

  8. My University Money

    09. Dec, 2011

    My experience with freelance writing has been that places like odesk, fiverr, and elance really offer terrible value for your services. Instead you’re way better off creating your own blog about something you like, and maybe a couple of niche sites. Once you do this you can get involved in a whole variety of blogging communities and make connections that will get you much better work (plus the potential revenue from your original sites themselves).

    • Money Cactus

      12. Dec, 2011

      Good to know. I did notice that their rates were pretty low, but if you are after a foot in the door I guess it is a place to start. As with everything I think you have to develop your credibility and reputation, from there you should be able to up your rates.

  9. Melissa

    09. Dec, 2011

    Great list. We are finding extra money for debt repayment and have used a combination of these. Selling things around the house we no longer use and generating extra income through online work have been most fruitful for us.

    • Money Cactus

      12. Dec, 2011

      Great combination. While it is getting more popular, I still think that people don’t think enough about selling the things they no longer use. As for making money online, I think it is a really smart thing to put some time into.

  10. Sustainable PF

    11. Dec, 2011

    I’ve been making money online spanning 4 decades. For 3 of those decades I made money via online gaming and selling item and accounts I built!

  11. Barb Friedberg

    13. Dec, 2011

    I loved the ideas you kids had!!! The entrepreneurial spirit works, no matter what the idea is. Nice article!

  12. JoJo

    11. Feb, 2012

    Some great ideas. There are many ways to do things you like which can be fun and profitable.