Looking to learn about the potential for side hustle income?
Each month I publish a YouTube and blog Income Report showing you how much money I made in my business as well as some lessons learned that contributed to that success and outcome.
My goal is to be transparent with you, show you the ups and downs as well as inspire you to hopefully build your own YouTube channel and/or blog.
Side hustle income is a large part of the financial success we’ve enjoyed over the last couple of years. We’ve paid off debt, cash flowed our wedding and new-to-me car, and saved a down payment on our first home. Without a side hustle, all of those wins wouldn’t have been possible.
With 10 online income streams, I am constantly diversifying my earnings and exploring new opportunities. Join me as I share my journey and explore the possibilities of earning money online.
My March business income from smallest to largest:
Here is how I made over $7,000 this month through both passive and active income.
What is passive income?
Passive income has become a buzzword in recent years, with many people aspiring to generate income streams that require little effort on their part. But what exactly is passive income, and how does it work?
At its core, passive income is income that is earned without requiring significant time or effort from the content creator. Unlike traditional forms of income, such as a salary or hourly wage, passive income can be generated through a variety of sources that require little to no ongoing maintenance or involvement.
Passive income can also be generated through digital products, such as e-books, courses, and printables. Once the product is created, it can be sold online without requiring ongoing effort or maintenance from the creator.
With a YouTube channel, once you create and upload your videos, they can continue to earn money through ad revenue and sponsorship deals, without requiring additional effort on your part. As your channel grows and gains more subscribers, you can also monetize your content through affiliate marketing. By promoting products and services to your audience and earning a commission on any resulting sales, you can create a passive income stream through your YouTube channel.
While the idea of passive income may seem appealing, it’s important to note that creating passive income streams often requires a significant upfront investment of time, money, or both. Additionally, passive income is not entirely passive, as some level of monitoring and management is usually required to maintain the income stream.
What is active income?
As a content creator, you likely already know that there are various ways to earn income from your work. One of the most common forms of income for creators is active income. Unlike passive income, which can be earned with little ongoing effort, active income requires consistent work and effort to generate.
Active income for content creators can take many forms. One of the most common is sponsored content. This is where a brand or company pays you to create content that promotes their products or services. This can include social media posts, blog posts, videos, and more. Sponsored content can be a lucrative form of active income, as long as you are selective about the brands you work with and ensure that the content you create aligns with your brand and values.
Another common form of active income for content creators is freelance work. This can include writing, graphic design, video editing, and more. Freelance work can provide a steady stream of income, as long as you are able to consistently secure new clients and manage your workload effectively. However, it’s important to note that freelance work can also be time-consuming and require a significant amount of effort to secure and complete.
In addition to sponsored content and freelance work, content creators can also earn active income through product sales. This can include selling e-books, courses, merchandise, and more. While creating and promoting products can require a significant amount of effort upfront, it can provide a reliable stream of income over time.
While active income may require consistent effort and work, it can also provide a steady stream of income for content creators. The key to success with active income is to diversify your income streams and be selective about the opportunities you pursue. By building a strong brand and loyal following, you can create a sustainable and profitable career as a content creator.
Can an income stream be both active and passive income?
A YouTube channel can be both active and passive income, depending on the strategies you use to monetize your content.
Initially, creating and growing a YouTube channel requires active effort to produce engaging content, build an audience, and attract sponsorships or affiliate partnerships.
However, once your channel gains momentum and attracts a loyal following, you can earn passive income through ad revenue, sponsorships, and affiliate marketing.
With ad revenue, you earn a portion of the revenue generated by ads shown on your videos. Sponsorships and affiliate marketing allow you to promote products or services to your audience, earning a commission on any resulting sales.
By diversifying your income streams and using a combination of active and passive strategies, you can create a sustainable and profitable career as a YouTuber.
Instagram Bonus Program: $33.72
Instagram rolled out a new program where they pay select creators for their content. Each month Instagram chooses a feature that they are going to pay you for.
Check out these videos to learn more about making money with Instagram Reels:
Blog Ad Revenue: $46.32
Blogging is one of the most popular ways to make money online, and for good reason. With a blog, you can create content on a topic you are passionate about and earn income through various monetization strategies.
One of the most common ways to make money through a blog is through advertising. By displaying ads on your website, you can earn a portion of the revenue generated by clicks or impressions.
To get started with advertising, you will need to sign up with an ad manager like Ezoic. Ezoic is a popular ad manager that uses artificial intelligence to optimize ad placement and increase revenue.
With Ezoic, you can easily display ads on your website and earn passive income with little ongoing effort.
In addition to advertising, bloggers can also earn money through affiliate marketing, sponsored content, and selling digital or physical products.
Affiliate marketing involves promoting products and services to your audience and earning a commission on any resulting sales.
Sponsored content involves creating content that promotes a brand or product in exchange for payment.
Selling digital or physical products can include e-books, courses, merchandise, and more.
By diversifying your income streams and using a combination of monetization strategies, you can create a sustainable and profitable career as a blogger.
With the right strategies in place and the support of tools like Ezoic, you can turn your blog into a successful business and earn a steady stream of income.
On my blog, freedominabudget.com, I share everything from monthly business income reports (like this one) to money-saving tips.
My goal is to publish 2-3 new blog posts every week, but clearly I didn’t hit that goal this month.
Blogs this month:
- 9 Signs You’re RICHER Than You Think
- Rakuten VS Honey | Which One Saves You MORE Money?
- 10 EASY Savings Challenges That Will Help You Save THOUSANDS [FREE PRINTABLE]
- CIT Bank’s Platinum Savings Account: Earn 4.75% APY and Reach Your Savings Goals Faster
- What is the 50-30-20 Rule for Saving, Investing & Spending?
Here is what the Ezoic dashboard looks like and my blog ad revenue from the last 30 days (the payments are net 30 days — that’s why the payment doesn’t match the below).
One of my most exciting income streams is my monthly membership for entrepreneurs.
As a business owner myself, I understand the challenges that come with managing a successful enterprise, and I wanted to create a space where entrepreneurs can learn from one another and gain access to valuable resources.
Through my membership program, members gain access to exclusive content, including behind-the-scenes insights into my own business, as well as personalized coaching and support.
Additionally, I’ve created a Discord channel (through Patreon) where people can come together and learn more about managing their money. I believe that this platform will prove invaluable to those seeking to improve their financial management skills and achieve their business goals.
>> Check out my Patreon here for a community looking to better manage their money!
>> Check out my membership to grow as an entrepreneur!
Digital Products: $123.48
On my website, I sell Monthly Excel Budget Templates and Spending Analysis Templates that work in Google Sheets! Soon all of my templates will be available in Excel and Google Sheets.
Creating and selling digital products can be a great way to generate passive income. Here are some steps to get started:
Choose a digital product to create: There are many types of digital products you can create, such as e-books, printables, stock photos, design templates, courses, and more. Consider your skills and interests, as well as what people are searching for online.
Create your digital product: Once you’ve chosen your product, create it using software like Canva, Adobe Creative Suite, or a course creation platform like ThriveCart. Make sure your product is high-quality and useful to your audience.
Choose a platform to host your digital product: You can host your digital product on a variety of platforms, including Shopify, Etsy, or your own website. Each platform has its own advantages and disadvantages, so consider what will work best for your product and target audience.
Set up your shop: If you’re using a platform like Shopify or Etsy, you’ll need to set up your shop and product listing. Make sure to use high-quality images and descriptive copy to showcase your product.
Market your digital product: Once your shop is set up, you’ll need to drive traffic to your product listing. You can do this through social media marketing, email marketing, or paid advertising. Consider partnering with influencers or affiliates to help promote your product.
Monitor and optimize: Finally, monitor your sales and performance, and optimize your listing and marketing strategy as needed to increase sales and generate passive income.
Remember that creating and selling digital products takes time and effort, but it can be a lucrative way to generate passive income over time
TOP Products this month:
- Savings Challenge Competition Printable
- Save 100k Challenge! | Money Saving Challenge Printable
- Debt Payoff Challenge Bundle | 8 Debt Payoff Tracker Printables
- FlyLady Inspired Zone Cleaning List Printables | Cleaning To Do List
- Get Motivated with Your Money BUNDLE! 3 Excel Templates & 12 Money Challenge Printables! $47 Value!
Sticker now available:
Course Sales: $249.39
Digital courses can be a fantastic revenue stream that allows you to share your expertise and knowledge with others while generating passive income. By creating a high-quality course that offers value to your audience, you can build a reputation in your industry and establish yourself as an authority on your topic. Plus, once your course is created, it can continue to generate income for years to come with minimal upkeep.
One of the best things about creating a digital course is that you can use the skills and knowledge you already have to help others. Whether you’re an expert in marketing, web development, or another field, there are likely people out there who are eager to learn from you. By creating a course that shares your expertise and teaches others valuable skills, you can help your students achieve their goals and improve their lives, all while generating income for yourself.
I recently moved over my courses from Teachable to ThriveCart for all new students. I have been so happy with ThriveCart hosting my courses, I am now working behind the scenes on a free ThriveCart Course! Stay tuned!
>> If you’re wanting to create your own online course, check out this free training here: How to Create Online Courses WITH NO EXPERIENCE! | Guide and Tools To Get Started
My signature course is Dreamer To Profitable.
This course will help you build a profitable business so you can finally live the life you deserve to have! Dreamer To Profitable is definitely for you. This is a step-by-step guide to getting the life of your dreams.
Here is what some of our students have to say:
I also have a course on How To Save Money On Groceries.
This course teaches how to maintain a healthy lifestyle, stop food waste, and give you tips and tricks to harness your best grocery life. You’ll save money, learn how to spend wisely, and, most importantly, you’ll learn how to lower your food cost so you can spend on the things that bring you joy!
>> If you’re wanting to create your own online course, check out this free training here: How to Create Online Courses WITH NO EXPERIENCE! | Guide and Tools To Get Started
Brand sponsorships are a great way to increase your income as well as tell your audience about amazing brands and companies!
I am extremely particular about what companies I work with and always fully vet those companies before accepting a sponsorship.
Ad Revenue: $707.04
YouTube pays me per ads shown on my videos.
I recently launched a 2nd YouTube channel with tutorials for entrepreneurs and working on getting the watch time on that channel, I have the subscriber requirements but only half way there for watch time.
Start Your ONLINE BUSINESS with Kelly Anne Smith TOP videos this month were:
- A Mission for Meaning By Gabriel Conte | Honest Book Review
- 5 Best Side Hustles You Can Do From Home 2023 (Make Your First $1,000 Online)
- How to Create Online Courses WITH NO EXPERIENCE! | Guide and Tools To Get Started
- 90 Days To Make $1,000 in an Online Business! | Free Masterclass
My Main Channel (Kelly Anne Smith) videos this month were:
- CIT Bank Platinum Savings | THE BEST High-Yield Savings Account
- 10 EASY Savings Challenges in 2023 [FREE PRINTABLE]
- Living on $188k a year in Los Angeles, California | Budget with Real Numbers
- The 9 Signs You’re RICHER Than You Think (Even If It Doesn’t Feel Like It)
- Rakuten or Honey 💸🛍️ Which One Saves You More Money
>> Get your own YouTube Monetization Tracker here:
Freelancing/Virtual Assistant: $1,750.00
Freelancing is a great way to make money by offering your skills and expertise to clients on a project basis. I manage a local realtor’s social media accounts and create reels for her.
To get started with freelancing, you’ll first want to assess your skills and interests. What are you good at, and what do you enjoy doing? Common freelance skills include writing, graphic design, web development, and marketing. Once you’ve identified your skills, you can start to look for freelance opportunities on job boards like Upwork or Freelancer, or by networking with other professionals in your industry.
To land a gig managing a local realtor’s social media, you’ll want to make sure you have experience in social media marketing and management. This might include creating content calendars, scheduling posts, analyzing metrics, and engaging with followers. You can reach out to local realtors in your area and offer your services, or you can look for opportunities on job boards like Indeed or LinkedIn.
When you land a freelance gig, it’s important to set clear expectations with your client. Make sure you agree on the scope of work, timeline, and compensation before you begin. You’ll also want to establish a clear communication plan so that you can keep your client up to date on your progress and any issues that arise.
As a freelancer, it’s important to manage your time effectively and stay organized. Make sure you’re tracking your time and expenses, and set aside time each week to market your services and find new clients. Over time, you can build a portfolio of work and develop a reputation in your industry, which can lead to more lucrative opportunities and higher rates.
Managing a local realtor’s social media can be a rewarding gig that allows you to use your creativity and marketing skills to help a business grow. By offering high-quality content and engaging with followers, you can help the realtor build their brand and attract new clients. Just be sure to communicate clearly with your client and stay organized to ensure a successful and profitable partnership.
Affiliate Marketing: $4,386.54
If affiliate marketing is something you are looking to get into, I recommend taking the course Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing. Michelle digs into the best way to promote brands that you know, like, and trust and well as all of the legal elements of affiliate marketing. I’ll be honest, there was way more things that you need to be aware of and do to be FTC compliant than I expected. The course breaks it all down for you.
My favorite platforms to find affiliates are:
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