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The effects of 2020 and the Coronavirus impact has been dramatic for everyone, and whether you have been fortunate to have retained your work, or have benefitted from the Governments furlough scheme or other support, the financial pressures can be very worrying, and particularly for women, who have less in savings and pensions than their male counterparts (source: The Independent).
More and more women are now turning to starting a side hustle to help them create additional financial security, and provide additional revenue streams that allow them to put money back into that savings pot that they may have had to delve into during the coronavirus pandemic. Starting a side hustle can be an effective way of bringing in that all important extra cash that can relieve pressure and stress, or maybe replace those nice to haves that we have all been missing during lockdown.
Starting a side hustle is not always easy, so it is best to be mindful of that and look to actively avoid “get rich quick schemes” or promises of overnight success. Here are some top tips when looking to start a side hustle…
3 things to consider before starting a side hustle:
- Why do you need the side hustle in the first place? It is no good starting a side hustle if you don’t have a clear goal for the actions you are going to take.
- How much time can you afford to invest in your side hustle? If you have limited time then this can help you with finding opportunities which require less effort – it can also stop you getting involved with side hustles which are not matched to your skill set.
- Think about how much you can afford to invest in your side hustle. There are different types of side hustle and all of them will have different costs associated with getting started…
how having a side hustle can help you with financial security
Additional revenue streams give you a source of income which you can use to plan for and save for the future. If you know that you have gaps in your pension and savings caused by maternity leave, or the current coronavirus pandemic affecting your finances then starting a successful side hustle can help to plug those gaps (you should always seek regulated advice with regards to pensions and investments).
A side hustle can also give you that extra income to enjoy the things that you may not be able to afford with just your core income. It can be a great way of giving yourself a treat fund for example. As it grows you may find that you can scale back on your core work to focus more on your venture, and possibly even get to the point where your small business takes over as your full time career. It all depends on how much you are able to work on the hustle and nurture and develop it.
Choosing a side hustle
Types of side hustle to consider:
-Passive Income from your expertise
All of the above can provde great additional income streams which you can use to support your finances and provide more financial security. The trick is to research carefully and look at the pros and cons of each option so that you choose the one that is best suited for you.
Below is a case study for a woman that’s done just that – she’s made a business from her passion for design, and now has an additional revenue stream that gives her the extra financial security on top of her day job…
case study: moira kimber pearl vine print
Being of the millennial generation, we are an age of workaholics that are constantly multi-tasking and always thinking. This is exactly me, working full time as a Lead Digital Designer but also fulfilling my dream with my luxury wedding stationery business on the side. For me, I always love to be busy, my mind never shuts down and I’m always thinking of what I can do next and am up to my ears in lists. In my day role, it’s managing a team of designers for an online retailer, whereby it’s predominantly digital web design and all other ad-hoc duties from e-mail marketing to building landing pages to driving sales within the in-house Marketing Department.
I absolutely love my job but having worked as a designer for over 10 years, the design industry is an age of mainly digital and print is becoming less and less sought after as a full time role. This is where my idea to start my own business sparked while commuting home one day, driving is where I have the most time to think. I have always wanted to be an entrepreneur and after planning my own dream wedding it drove my business idea. I absolutely loved the wedding planning journey and designing our very own wedding stationery and wedding signage and there’s nothing I love more than print, receiving a finished item, the quality and print is truly special.
To understand what your side hustle will be, it’s about finding something where there’s a gap in the market, your niche. Not only that but something that you have expertise in and are passionate about or otherwise you will quickly tire of what you’re doing. The driving force behind my side business is that it’s my passion project, I don’t see it as working, as it’s a joy to work for myself. If you wake up every day and look forward to what you do, it doesn’t then feel like a job anymore.
So How Do You Launch Your Side Hustle?
For me the side hustle is real and I do love it while I work towards my end goal of running my own business full time. I absolutely love the buzz of working my 9-5 job but then fulfilling and sending out orders in the evenings and the weekends. However, I do take the time to enjoy my Sundays and call it self-care Sunday’s as by juggling a business alongside a full time job there is that risk of burnout which is not at all good for anyone. I find by pre-planning my social media and putting processes in place to fulfill orders etc I ensure I know the capacity of work I can comfortably take on without being unrealistic. As I work towards my full time self-employed goal I make time to learn and absorb knowledge and put in the groundwork to make this dream come true. It is tough but if you don’t put in the legwork that small business dream will never come true.
For me getting my website live was absolutely essential and building a brand that I was proud of. My brand identity was created and the name Pearl Vine Print came about, I am half Italian so the vine aspect tied in nicely, as well as the fact that the vine leaf on my brand is from the region my husband proposed to me, Bologna in Italy. Not only that, pearls are a good luck charm for a bride on their wedding day and it was also my grandmother’s name. She was a truly inspirational figure to me. With my brand created and my website launched I then expanded onto Etsy to further grow my business. From attending wedding fairs and throwing myself out of my comfort zone, I soon realised how much I loved meeting couples face to face and getting to know them.
Next Steps and Growing My Side Hustle
By creating quality and bespoke printed goods for the couple that wants a collaborative approach to creating their perfect wedding stationery I continue to fulfil my dream while expanding my business. As once said by Winston Churchill “Never give up on something you can’t go a day without thinking about”.
For me it’s not only about fulfilling my passion but also having that sense of financial security rather than relying solely on my full time role. Having my wedding stationery business gives me an extra source of income and in the current climate having this buffer has made me feel that bit less worried as I know all of my eggs aren’t in one basket. I am building a future for myself and having that extra pot financially, gives me that security, I do dip into it to either book wedding fairs, boost paid advertising etc but I am very smart about what I do and don’t spend with it, and keep everything listed on spreadsheets so I know the ins and outgoings of my business.
I had one of my busiest years yet last year, everything from wedding invitations to welcome signs, wax seals and this year amidst the Covid-19 pandemic I have still been able to take orders and spend time working on growth. This has really set me up for this year as unfortunately having a lot of postponed weddings it has still given me a good base amount to work from and save. It’s my main goal to not spend too much and keep adding and saving more and more into my business account to really give me a strong sense of security with my business earnings and to then expand my offering branching out even more so.
I have since been published in the Scottish Wedding Magazine and on Whimsical Wonderland Weddings as well as an Etsy Awards 2019 Finalist and am taking 2022 bookings which is a great sign for me. With the help of Online Visibility Specialist Pamela and the SEO Privilege Group, I am continuing to grow my organic traffic and visits and am loving taking every day as it comes.
Do not be afraid to take the plunge, by having a full time job it gives that security while you test the water and who knows where it may lead, if you don’t try you’ll never find out.
Thank you to Moira from Pearl Vine Print for this case study!