Whatever you call yourself; sole-trader, freelancer, business owner, founder, subject expert or anything else, your business sells something. Whatever that thing is you’re selling, whether it’s handmade, individually crafted products, or your expertise in the form of services that you provide (like coaching or holistic therapies), your business is more than likely based on exchanging your time for money.
Sadly, this is still very much like employment. Yes, you have all the benefits of being self-employed: the freedom of choosing your working schedule without the worry of sick days or flexible arrangements, choosing your clients and being generally free.
But when it comes to the income side of things, it’s tougher. You’ve got lots more on your plate, and that’s only if you can make ends meet. And payment wise; it’s still specific when it comes to your income. The more you work, the more you earn. Time for money. Dammit.
You and I both know that it isn’t possible for you to sell more than so many time-slots in one day for your service based business. It’s a physical no-no that you’re going to be able to create more of the products that you lovingly craft than you’re currently producing. Whatever anyone says, there are still only 24 hours in the day.
Enter passive income….
The key isn’t to work harder or for longer; it’s productising your brain, your process or expanding the way you look at your customers needs. Changing the way you look at where your income is generated and how you do business. The ultimate goal: to diversify where some of the income in your business actually comes from. The more income streams you have, the higher your profit (I hope!) and the more customers you can reach with the same time investment. Bonus!
What is Passive Income?
When you stop believing that you need to exchange time for money, at least some of the time, you can begin to generate revenue from income streams or offers that manage themselves. This is called passive income, and it’s one of the best ways to get more cash into your existing business.
Passive income is certainly not a new concept. For generations, financiers have been insisting that the wealthy generate passive revenue by investing in property, stocks and high interest savings schemes. This is compounded in the bestselling book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, which made seemingly scary monetary concepts accessible to the masses.
The digital age broadened the horizons of passive income; with the introduction of further reaching MLMs and crypto-currency. On top of that, everyday business folks and hobbyists were suddenly able to reach millions of people through the power of the internet. Not only has this revolutionised the way many do business, but it has also allowed millions of people to become entrepreneurs from the comfort of their own living room. The Book, The 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris took entrepreneurship to the next level, allowing businesses to come alive and thrive on less than a full days “work”. But these concepts aren’t for everyone and the term ‘passive income’ can have an ‘ick’ factor attached to it that we just don’t want hanging off our shoe like days-old chewing gum. Plus, when you’ve already got your own business, you can end up feeling like you’ve made your bed and you should damn-well lie in it.
How Can It Help You?
So, what am I telling you this for? Well, for starters, I need you to know that the way you’ve been doing business so far is not wrong. Far from it. If you were doing everything wrong you’d have been out of business a long time ago. What I am trying to tell you though is that there are options for your existing business that you may not have considered, far removed from property, bitcoin and MLMs.
The exchange of time for money does not have to be the “be all and end all” of your income. Your bottom line could be made up of a number of sources of revenue on top of what you’re already creating, with not-too-much on the old effort front. All leading back to a bulky bank account that leaves you impassioned to continue to create and delivery wonderful things with the time you do choose to exchange.
There are so many options for passive income streams that are relevant to your business. You are simply expanding on, or changing, the delivery of your specialist skill or knowledge. Create something once and let it produce revenue for you while you sleep. On autopilot! Or deliver your knowledge in a different way, reducing the hours spent labouring and amalgamating the audience. Not only does this create extra cash and removes the income ceiling that you’re so unflatteringly pressed against, but it also allows you to help more people and build more authority in your area of expertise.
Passive income is being paid for something over and over again, after the work is done. You invest initial time and effort for continued rewards that pay dividends while you work, rest or play. One of the best feelings is waking to more money in your bank account from sales you’ve made overnight!
Perhaps it’s time to start thinking outside of the box for your own business?
Think of these:
- What might bring more revenue into your business? What else do you customers need?
- What passive income streams might work for you and your business? Who else can you help?
- What skills do you share that others might like to learn? How can you teach what you know?
- What complimentary products could you promote alongside your existing offer? What will help your customers?
- What workshops could you offer that turn one to one work into a one to many model?
The possibilities are endless, and this is just the beginning. And if you’re stuck, I’d love to help you to develop ideas that turn into offers that will be filling your pockets for years to come!