“You have a skill, but you’re not using it correctly."
That the tough love advice Vincent Pugliese's father gave him.
Vincent was working what he thought was his dream job as a photojournalist. He'd just won the most prestigious award in his industry (International Sports Photographer of the Year), and he and his wife Elizabeth had a baby on the way.
Yet the newspaper job didn't pay well. With the impending arrival of their son, Vincent took a hard look at his financial picture: he was in his mid-30s, 6-figures in debt, and earning $15 an hour.
Something had to change, and something did.
Four years later, the family was debt free and self-employed, thanks to the success of their freelance photography side hustle.
I met Vincent at Podcast Movement and invited him on the show to share his inspiring and relate-able story. With a growing trend toward freelance workers, his transition is one many people will need to make over the next few years.
With his newfound time freedom, Vincent has kept busy with a number of new projects including his upcoming book Freelance to Freedom, and an online course teaching parents how to take better sports pictures of their kids.
(Even though Vincent had no "audience" of his own to sell to, the course did over $30k on launch day, giving us the hook for this episode.)
Tune in to hear how he and his wife got it done and how you can apply the same strategies to the skills on your own resume.
More episodes from "The Side Hustle Show: The Freelancing Mixtape"
19: LinkedIn Lead Generation: How to Attract Your Ideal Clients on LinkedIn
34:31Would 10 new clients solve all your business worries? That was the position Helen Pritchard was in back in 2008. On the back of a financial and personal crisis, Helen needed 10 clients paying £250 each to pay her bills. She turned to LinkedIn to find those clients, and it didn’t take her long. Since then, Helen has pivoted her business and now teaches other people how to get clients and grow their business using LinkedIn. In fact, I found out about Helen through a listener of the show: I do not work for Helen. Nor do I do her PR. I just want to nominate her because she changed my life. Thanks to her, I have filled my client roster and have more money coming in as an entrepreneur than I ever did working for someone else. That’s an awesome testimonial for Helen, and solid proof that her methods work. Note: Click here to download Helen’s top tips for attracting your ideal clients on LinkedIn from this episode. If your goal is to leave your job in the near future, you don’t want to miss this one. What Helen teaches is probably the fastest way to start your own business with the least upfront expense. Tune in to hear Helen talk through: the processes she teaches students on her LinkedIn mastermind how to set up your LinkedIn profile as a landing page that converts how to connect with potential clients and more
18: Virtual Consulting: How to Start a Location-Independent Consulting Business
49:28A location-independent consulting business that replaces your day job income in a matter of months? That’s what Paul Minors achieved with his virtual software consulting side hustle. Paul was able to leave his day job within a couple of months of starting his business. He was then able to go traveling with his wife for 6-months while working 15-20 hours a week from his laptop. After arriving back home, he started working full-time on his consulting business. “I noticed the impact of that straight away, within a couple of months I had doubled my income,” Paul told me. Note: Click here to download Paul’s top tips for setting up a location-independent consulting business and landing your first clients from this episode. It’s clear Paul has figured out this business model. This episode is packed with ideas you might be able to apply to your own areas of expertise. Maybe you’ll even uncover some areas of expertise you never really considered that special before. Tune in to hear: How Paul came across the idea of offering his first consulting services “by accident.” The several different marketing channels that drive targeted traffic to his website How he’s added more products and services to his portfolio
17: How to Start a Service Business to Replace Your Income, Step-by-Step
46:11Starting a service business on the side is one of the fastest ways to build extra income. It's flexible, low-overhead, and you can probably start with skills you already have. “I had a lot of drive underneath me," Abbey Ashley told me, about starting her service business back in 2013. "I was super pregnant and I hated my job so much,” Abbey started offering her services as a virtual assistant, and connected with her first clients at local networking events in Washington, DC. My the time her maternity leave was up--just a few short months--Abbey had booked enough work to not have to go back to that job she hated. On top of that, she only had to work 20 hours a week to do it, and could work from home. There are almost no barriers to entry to starting a freelance service business, and the startup costs are minimal. (All Abbey did was make business cards for networking.) In fact, it was a service business, a house painting business in my case, that was one of my first entrepreneurial adventures. Over time, Abbey scaled her virtual assistant business from just herself at $20-30 an hour, to her own little virtual agency, to $75 an hour and up for some specialized work.
16: A Local Service Business that Scales - From Zero to $60k a Month in Revenue
44:54“I tell people I work on my cleaning business about an hour a day because 5 minutes doesn’t seem believable,” Chris Schwab said. Chris is the founder of ThinkMaids.com, a residential house cleaning service in the Washington DC area he started on the side while still a university student. Less than two years later, the business is doing $60k a month worth of cleaning work, all without Chris ever lifting a mop or dusting a shelf himself. Note: Click here to download Chris’ top tips for starting and growing a local service business that scales from this episode. In this episode, Chris shares some of the unique tactics he used to start and grow his cleaning business, and then remove himself from the day-to-day operations. Tune in to hear how Chris came up with the idea for his cleaning business, how he found his first customers and cleaners, and how he manages the entire business remotely.
15: The Passive Income Service Business
37:46“I set up a big business just selling somebody else’s stuff,” Wes said. Wes runs TheSalesWhisperer.com and is the host of The Sales Podcast which started around the same time as The Side Hustle Show back in 2013. He’s an Air Force vet, a father of 7, and has built up an interesting side hustle that on the surface looks like a typical consulting business but is done in such a way that it’s set up to generate recurring passive income. Wes has been side hustling since the 90’s and started his online business around a decade ago. He saw an opportunity to become one of the first Infusionsoft resellers, a piece of software that not only streamlined his own business but offered attractive recurring affiliate commissions. Wes became one of the top earners in the world and was netting $15k a month in mostly passive income, all on the side from his primary consulting, speaking, and sales training practice. Note: Click here to download Wes’s top tips for building an automated passive income business from this episode. He’s adapted his strategies over the years and diversified his income streams but his business model stays similar to this day – scalable affiliate marketing with recurring passive income. Tune in to hear how Wes started generating passive income through affiliate marketing and how you may be able to use a similar strategy in your service business.
14: From Active to Passive Income: From $25 an Hour to 6-Figure Launches
45:02When Abbey made $8000 from her 1000-person email list, she knew she was on to something. Over the last several years, Abbey Ashley has gone from earning $25 as a virtual assistant, to coordinating monster 6-figure launches of her own product. I actually met Abbey at the bar during Traffic and Conversion Summit. Her “Virtual Assistance Is My Jam,” t-shirt caught my attention and I had to know more. Eight months pregnant with her first daughter, she couldn't imagine putting her child in day care just to go back to work at a job she hated. Note: Click here to download Abbey’s top tips from this episode. So she started devouring everything she could find online about working from home and virtual assisting. Before long, she'd landed her first clients and booked enough work not to have to go back to her old job when her leave was up. Eventually she started subcontracting out some of the work, which was her first taste of passive income. As some of her clients were doing really well selling online courses, Abbey tried to enter that world as well. Her first course launches were major flops. Then she did what all good entrepreneurs do when a first attempt doesn’t go as planned. She looked at what went wrong, made the necessary changes, and tried again. She pre-sold her next course idea to the tune of $8000 from a 1000-person list. Her second launch generated $40k in sales, and 6 months later her next launch generated $160k in sales. Tune in to how Abbey walked The Side Hustle Path, her actionable hacks and strategies along the way, and how she built and sold her online course even without a huge audience starting out.
13: How to Start a $1000/Month Freelance Writing Business in 60 Minutes a Day
43:24In his first 3 months, he'd booked more than $4000 worth of work. “I’ve never been very good at working with people, so I wanted something that was flexible,” James said. Sound familiar? These are the words of someone who was not happy being a shoe salesman and wanted out. James was looking for that location independent lifestyle, and when he was approached to ghostwrite a book for $300 he knew what he wanted to do from that point on. Fast-forward a couple of years and James now charges $300 per 1000 words for his freelance writing, and most of his work is at least 2500 words ($750). Note: Click here to download James’ top tips for becoming a freelancer writer from this episode. He’s also started up a cool business at FreelanceWritersSchool.com teaching others how to follow in his footsteps. Tune in to hear how James landed his first clients, his strategies for growing a portfolio, and some of his favorite hacks to overcome writer's block.
12: Freelance to Freedom: From $30k a Year to $30k in a Day
48:40“You have a skill, but you’re not using it correctly." That the tough love advice Vincent Pugliese's father gave him. Vincent was working what he thought was his dream job as a photojournalist. He'd just won the most prestigious award in his industry (International Sports Photographer of the Year), and he and his wife Elizabeth had a baby on the way. Yet the newspaper job didn't pay well. With the impending arrival of their son, Vincent took a hard look at his financial picture: he was in his mid-30s, 6-figures in debt, and earning $15 an hour. Not great. Something had to change, and something did. Four years later, the family was debt free and self-employed, thanks to the success of their freelance photography side hustle. Note: Click here to download Vincent’s top tips for creating freedom through freelancing. I met Vincent at Podcast Movement and invited him on the show to share his inspiring and relate-able story. With a growing trend toward freelance workers, his transition is one many people will need to make over the next few years. With his newfound time freedom, Vincent has kept busy with a number of new projects including his upcoming book Freelance to Freedom, and an online course teaching parents how to take better sports pictures of their kids. (Even though Vincent had no "audience" of his own to sell to, the course did over $30k on launch day, giving us the hook for this episode.) Tune in to hear how he and his wife got it done and how you can apply the same strategies to the skills on your own resume.
11: Scaling Up a Service Business: From Idea to $400k in Monthly Recurring Revenue (in Under 3 Years)
44:27Three years ago Design Pickle didn't exist. It wasn't even an idea in founder Russ Perry's head yet. That's why it seems crazy to me that today the unlimited graphic design service is doing $400k in monthly recurring revenue! Back in 2014 Russ was running a creative agency, but he started to hate everything about it. “I felt like I was in a prison of my own creation,” he said. By January 2015, he'd shut down his agency and started working as a freelancer. Not wanting to build a similar prison again, he sought out a different business model -- one with a simpler service offering that was designed to scale. From taking on a friend as his first client to now completing more than 800 design jobs a day, it’s been an incredibly quick ascension and a great example of how to scale a service business. Note: Click here to download Russ’ top tips for scaling a service business from this episode. Tune in to hear how Russ grew his business from zero to $410k+ in monthly recurring revenue in less than 3 years. We cover his marketing strategies, his hiring best practices, and what Design Pickle does to keep customers coming back month after month.
10: Reverse Engineer your Dream Job: How a Struggling Songwriter Built a Multiple 6-Figure Business Doing What She Loves
42:38Over the last decade, Cathy Heller has earned hundreds of thousands of dollars from her music and helping other musicians license their songs. In fact, you've probably heard some of her music without realizing it. Songs of hers have been featured in ads for huge brands, like McDonald’s, Walmart, Kellogg’s, as well as many popular TV shows. Note: Click here to download Cathy’s top tips for reverse engineering your dream job. Today, the mother of 3 balances family, her art, her agency, her online course, and her new Don't Keep Your Day Job podcast, where she interviews other entrepreneurs, artists, and influencers. Cathy's story is an inspiring one, and it follows a familiar trajectory: freelancer to agency to product. When she moved to LA to be a rockstar, she didn't know where it would lead. That didn't pan out, but she landed at something perhaps even more fulfilling. She called it reverse engineering her dream job, and thinks other people can do the same. Tune in to hear how Cathy walked The Hustler's Path from freelancer to agency to product, and how you can apply her ideas and tactics to find your dream job.