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The Side Hustle Show on Smash Notes

The Side Hustle Show podcast.

December 28, 2019

The Side Hustle Show is the podcast for part-time entrepreneurs who are looking for business ideas, actionable tips to start a business, and killer strategies on how to turn their side hustle dreams into a growing business. We cover all aspects of starting a business and making money (online and offline), including small business marketing, sales, websites, social media marketing, blogging, time management, and more. Our topics include passive income ideas, niche sites, self-publishing, software and app development, coaching and consulting, freelancing, affiliate marketing, Amazon FBA, and much more.
Learn how to turn your business idea into your own thriving small business. Starting your own business gives you the freedom and opportunity to quit your job. It doesn't take a high-flying start-up to make money or create an awesome lifestyle business.
Guests include Jon Acuff, Chris Ducker, Brian Clark, John Lee Dumas, Pat Flynn, and many Tim Ferriss and Gary Vaynerchuk proteges. Because your 9 to 5 may make you a living, but your 5-9 makes you alive.
Hosted by Nick Loper, Chief Side-Hustler at Side Hustle Nation (.com).



Episodes with Smash Notes

Starting a business doesn't have to be expensive -- in fact, low startup cost business ideas are everywhere.

Just last week, Nate and Alysha Jackson explained how they started their Amazon retail arbitrage business with just $100 -- and had since grown to over $1 million in total sales.

Inspired by their story, along with a couple of threads in the Side Hustle Nation Facebook group that asked for some real-life low startup cost business ideas, I put together this episode.

Stick around to hear how several Side Hustle Nation members got their business off the ground on the cheap. In most cases, you don’t need outside capital to get started.

Instead, my hope is you’ll use these stories as inspiration to start lean and start now.

Full show notes.

“It was costing me money to go to my job,” Nate told me.

That was just a year after Nate and Alysha Jackson started their Amazon FBA retail arbitrage business -- with just a $100 investment.

Since then, the former public school teachers have sold over $1 million worth of products on Amazon!

Amazon FBA retail arbitrage is the art of buying low locally and online, and reselling for a profit on Amazon.

After hearing about the opportunity on Side Hustle Nation, they turned that $100 in initial inventory into more than $180,000 in total sales in 12 months. It didn't take much longer than that before they both quit their jobs to focus on the Amazon business and their growing family.

Tune in to hear:

the product categories Nate and Alysha like for new sellers (interestingly enough, they’re known as the bra flipping couple in FBA circles). where they source profitable inventory. tools of the trade to scale up your reselling business.

If you want to start an online business, you’re probably going to need to build a website.

But could you shortcut the process by just buying one that’s already working?

In this episode, which is the fourth and final episode of our Showdown series this month, we’re comparing two ways you operate a revenue-generating website; building your own site vs buying an established website.

For this debate, I’ve got a couple of powerhouse guests:

Mark Webster from AuthorityHacker.com and the Authority Hacker podcast, one of my favorite resources for all things SEO and affiliate marketing. He’ll be representing the build side of this conversation. Dom Wells from Onfolio.co is on the buy side. Onfolio, among other things, has a management service for website investors. He’s been in the website building, buying, and monetizing space for years.

There are pros and cons to both starting and buying websites. But, as you’ll hear discussed, there are some key differences between each method and might help you lean one way or the other.

Tune in to hear both Mark and Dom discuss the different strategies behind:

Getting started Finding a site to buy Quick wins and monetization Marketing Pros and cons of each model And more

These guys both have a lot of experience in building and buying websites. By the end of this one, you’ll have a good idea which path is best for you.

Full show notes

A service business is one of the fastest side hustles to get off the ground, and you can scale it by hiring other people to deliver the work.

But is there an advantage to staying a solo operator?

In this Side Hustle Showdown we're looking at freelancing vs. building an agency.

For this debate, I invited a couple members of The Side Hustle Nation community who both run cleaning companies:

Chris Schwab from ThinkMaids.com represented the agency side. We last heard from Chris in episode 294, where he talked about how he’d built his cleaning business to $60k a month in revenue, and scaled back his own involvement to just 10 minutes a day. Ken Carfango from SoloCleaningSchool.com represented the solo freelance side. Ken’s a former engineer and a father of 5 who’s got his cleaning business dialed in where he can knock out the work himself in just a couple days, and enjoy 5-day weekends with his family.

Tune in to hear both Chris and Ken discuss which business model is best for:

Getting started Finding new clients Scaling Start-up costs How to exit And more

If you’re trying to decide which path you want to take, stick around to learn how to avoid the dreaded “valley of despair” that often afflicts service businesses, and how to get started on the right foot.

Full show notes

In the e-commerce space, selling private label products on Amazon has been a popular side hustle for the last several years.

But is it still the best way to go?

Or is there a lower risk, higher reward way to turn your ideas into profits?

In this episode, which is the second episode of our Showdown series this month, we’re comparing two ways you can capitalize on opportunities in the market; selling private label products and product licensing.

For this debate, I’ve sourced two guests who have appeared on the Side Hustle Show before:

Greg Mercer of JungleScout.com, creator of the popular Jungle Scout product research and amazon analytics software. We last from Greg on episode 263, when he talked about how to find your first Amazon FBA private label product. (Try Jungle Scout for half off your first month with my referral link.) Stephen Key of, InventRight.com and author of the One Simple Idea: Turn Your Dreams into a Licensing Goldmine While Letting Others Do the Work. We last heard from Stephen on episode 113, when he talked about how you can turn your ideas into recurring revenue.

Both business models allow you to exercise our creative muscles. But, as you’ll find out, each model is suited to a different personality type and has a different balance of risk and reward.

Tune in to hear both Greg and Stephen dig into the different strategies behind:

Getting started Marketing and discoverability Start-up costs Beating the competition Monetization And more

There is some interesting insight into these business models. By the end of the episode, you’ll have a clearer idea of which business model is best for you.

Full show notes

Creating content online can be a super-effective way to build an audience and ultimately to make money.

If you’re just starting out or trying to grow your business, you might be wondering what type of content makes the most sense to create.

In this episode, we’re going to compare and contrast two of the most popular content channels going today: podcasting and YouTube.

This is actually the first of several friendly debate-style episodes this month I’m calling the Side Hustle Showdown series.

For each debate, I tried to source guests in a similar niche so they could best speak each other’s language.

To fire shots over the pros and cons of starting an online business with podcasts or YouTube, I enlisted the help of:

Podcaster Jonathan Mendonsa, co-host of ChooseFI, a personal finance show. We last heard from Jonathan in episode 287, where he talked about how his show took off and how he was able to quit his job just 10 months in. YouTuber Marko Zlatic, who started his personal finance channel Whiteboard Finance as a side hustle also in 2017. Since then he's amassed 370k subscribers and quit his job to produce videos full-time.

Tune in to hear both Marko and Jonathan go back and forward discussing which of the platforms are best for:

Marketing and discoverability Content production Monetization Start-up costs And more

This is a fun one, and by the end, you’ll have an idea which platform is going to be best for your business.

Full show notes

Businesses evolve over time, but I don’t think anyone could have prepared for the pace of change this year.

To gauge how some of you have been handling everything the pandemic has thrown at you, I reached out to Side Hustle Nation and asked what pivots and changes you’ve been making in your business over the last few months.

What I got back were some interesting and innovative ways some business owners and side hustlers have found to actually grow their businesses during the pandemic.

Here’s a look at some of the hardest hit industries, and some of the ways business owners have been pivoting and adapting.

Full show notes

At the end of nearly every episode of The Side Hustle Show, I ask my guests for their "#1 tip for Side Hustle Nation."

There’s always a great variety of responses, and I wanted to take some time today to go through some of my favorites from the past 50-ish interviews.

This has become an annual tradition on the show, and we just passed 7 years and 12 million downloads!

If you like this short-and-sweet meta-style show, be sure to check out the others in this series:

Episode 50 Episode 124 Episode 177 Episode 236 Episode 288 Episode 338

Full show notes

How did a butcher shop's side project turn into "the best snacks in the world" -- and $500,000 in sales in their first year?

And more importantly, could you apply the same strategies to help local businesses take their products online?

This story features Dustin Reichmann, a long-time Side Hustle Show listener. He has a blog called EngagedMarriage.com, and with the online marketing skills learned there, started a new consulting business to help other businesses build their online presence.

One of his clients was a local butcher shop. Impressed by one of their products--a higher-end, clean-ingredient meat stick--Dustin felt there was an opportunity to reach a lot more customers online.

So, he made Ryan -- the owner of the butcher shop -- a low-risk offer to partner and launch the product online.

What followed was a series of wins across multiple marketing channels and through a number of innovative promotional tactics.

Tune in to hear:

How Dustin approached Ryan with a win-win partnership. The marketing channels and techniques they used to sell more than $500,000 worth of FireCreek snacks in their first year. How they got their product into 50+ Walmart stores. And how anyone can apply the same online and offline marketing strategies into their own business.

Full show notes

How does a YouTube channel with less than 300 subscribers generate 6-figures a year?

In Joshua Lisec's case, he does it by answering targeted questions, and selling high-value services to those viewers.

Joshua is an award-winning, celebrity-recommended, #1 international bestselling Certified Professional Ghostwriter. He’s also a TEDx speaker, a novelist, and has ghostwritten over 45 books for entrepreneurs, executives, and public figures.

Over the last few years, Joshua's freelance work has gone from $1.67 an hour on his first writing project, to over $500,000 a year!

(Long-time listeners might remember him; Joshua appeared on episode 201 in late 2016. In that classic Side Hustle Show episode, we talked through the OPA strategy -- tapping into Other People's Audiences -- to sell your services.)

In this episode, we're diving into another innovative marketing strategy involving YouTube. It's one you can apply to your own business right away.

Tune in to hear Joshua explain:

How he’s generating high value leads on YouTube with less than 300 subscribers The tools and techniques he’s using to optimize his YouTube videos to rank well How he bundled individual low paying freelance gigs for a high-value service

Liam Austin made $50k off his first online event, and hasn't looked back. Since then, Liam has hosted another 17 virtual summits and online business networking events.

In total, these events have brought together more than 400 speakers and 100,000 business owners.

Virtual summits allow you to connect with industry leaders and influencers in your niche while growing your own audience.

Hosting a virtual summit sounds pretty straightforward:

interview a bunch of influential people in your niche collect registrations of people who want to watch those interviews sell access to the recordings after they expire

But the virtual summit model has a lot of nuance and strategy, and behind-the-scenes action that all has to come together to make it a hit.

That's why I invited Liam on the show.

Note: Click here to download Liam’s top tips for planning and hosting a virtual summit from this episode.

If you’re looking for ways to grow your business and make meaningful connections within your industry, this episode lays out that blueprint for you.

Tune in to hear Liam talk through:

The core benefits of hosting a virtual summit How he made $50k from his first summit and learned some valuable lessons What it’s going to take to create your own virtual summit in your industry And more