Book Reviews

Side Hustle by Chris Guillebeau -Book Notes, Summary, and Review

42. Side Hustle - Chris Guillebeau

Get it on Amazon

Rating: 7/10

Date of reading: 30th of October – 6th of November, 2017

Description: How to create a side hustle (defined in the book by the monthly income of $400-3000).


My notes:




“When a British man who managed a construction company wrote a series of fish tank reviews for an obscure website, he included links to several Amazon product listings at the end of the reviews. He knew he’d earn a small commission if visitors clicked through from the reviews and made a purchase, but he was so busy with his day job that after he posted the reviews, he promptly forgot about the whole thing. A few weeks later, a check arrived in the mail…for $350. His partner didn’t believe it was real money until he took her out to a nice dinner with the proceeds. At the time, he had no idea that this small project, created in a weekend, would go on to make hundreds of dollars. He also didn’t know that several years later those same reviews would still be earning him an average of $700 a month, without any further work on his part. It wasn’t retirement money, but it sure was nice.” ( :12)

“When you receive multiple paychecks from different sources, you are no longer dependent on the whims of a single employer.” ( :13)

“Did you ever hear the saying that money doesn’t grow on trees? Parents sometimes say this to their kids when the kids want to buy everything in sight. These parents are only half right. Money does grow on trees—you just have to plant the right seeds, in the right soil. In each short chapter of this book, you’ll read a story of someone who found a money tree and made it blossom—simply by putting an idea into action. Along the way, you’ll learn how to uncover and unlock a replicable process you can tailor to your own hustle.” ( :13)

“• You don’t need much money. Put away your credit cards (at least the ones with high limits) and don’t worry about needing to raise capital or ask someone for a loan. The process I’ll show you in the days ahead, along with the vast majority of ideas and stories you’ll read about, do not require a large amount of money—and in some cases, no money at all is required.” ( :14)

“• You don’t need much time. To be fair, you’ll need some time. But the time required to start a hustle should be minimal. The twenty-seven-day plan is designed to be doable alongside your existing commitments and take no more than one hour a day. If you want to work faster, or build your project to a higher level right away, that’s fine and you can spend more time doing so—but you won’t have to.” ( :14)

“In fact, some of these things (the money, the abundance of free time, even education) can actually be detrimental to your plan. If you have money to spend, you’ll spend it. If you have an abundance of free time to waste, you’ll waste it. Whatever you learned about business in school can sidetrack or prevent you from taking the simple steps you need to turn your idea into action.” ( :15)

“I’ve been starting and operating side hustles my entire adult life. In fact, it’s the only occupational path I’ve ever known. For more than twenty years, I’ve made a good living doing everything from importing coffee to building websites. Somewhere in that time, I also spent several years as an aid worker in West Africa, then pursued (and finished) a quest to visit every country in the world. If you asked me how to be a better employee, I wouldn’t know what to tell you. But if you want to know how to create a new source of income, I can guide you each step of the way.” ( :15)

“Learn to generate profitable ideas WEEK 1: Select your best idea (not all ideas are created equal!) WEEK 2: Prepare to share your best idea with the right group of people WEEK 3: Launch—probably before you’re ready—and track your results WEEK 4: Regroup and refine WEEK 5:” ( :16)

“Do you like the idea of having more than one source of income? ✓ Are you willing to devote at least thirty minutes a day to building your hustle, for ✓ at least the next twenty-seven days?” ( :19)

“Trust the process.” ( :19)




“When you build something for yourself, even as you continue to work your day job, you become empowered. You gain confidence. You create security, both in the form of that extra cash and also in the fact that you’re opening up future opportunities for yourself.” ( :22)

“There was just one problem: the job paid only minimum wage, so her rewards mostly consisted of those smiles. Happy faces are nice, but you can’t deposit them in your checking account.” ( :24)

“Indeed, she could. That event led to another, then another—and before long, she was charging $100 an hour for corporate events, a rate far higher than what she’d earned at the amusement park.” ( :24)

“She began charging $250 an hour, focusing on corporate events that had larger budgets for the right kind of experiences. The higher rate was too much for some event planners, but plenty of others gladly accepted— so she was now making two and a half times as much while working the same hours. Julia’s money tree was growing fast.” ( :25)

“Julia’s case, one version of her idea paid $8 an hour, another paid $100, and another one paid a tremendous $250. It’s obvious which approach was better.” ( :25)

“you’re actually going to do this, not just think about it. When you think START A PROJECT: about an idea, do you feel excited? Can you envision your next steps? If not, abandon the idea. remember, a side hustle is not a hobby. A side hustle produces income. THAT EARNS MONEY:” ( :25)

“If you don’t see a clear way to get paid, abandon the idea. if your idea requires three years to get going, abandon the idea. IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME:” ( :26)

“”I want to start an ice-cream-of-the-month club that delivers artisanal flavors to offices. The service is marketed to HR managers and small business CEOs as a way to increase morale and bring employees together for regular social experiences.”” ( :26)

“I recently went to an event where the parking cost $25. Normally it costs $5 to park in this lot, but for the special event the price had increased 500 percent overnight. Was I happy about paying $25 for something that usually costs $5? Nope. Did I pay it? Yep. Supply and demand ensured that the parking lot owner was providing a service that was very persuasive on that day.” ( :27)

“• A grand vision that is hard to simplify or translate into action • Something you have no idea how to make (or requires skills that you don’t have) • A vague, nonspecific idea of the kind of people who will pay for it • Something that is high maintenance or requires a lot of lead time to produce” ( :27)

“A simple path to turn the idea into reality that you can describe in one sentence • Something that you know how to do or can easily figure out” ( :27)

“• Solves a problem or makes someone’s life easier in a specific way (and that they will be willing to pay for) • Is low maintenance and easy to deliver without a ton of preparation or follow-up • Will bring in income not just once but on a recurring basis” ( :28)

“Can you describe how to turn your idea into action in one sentence? Is there an obvious way to make money with this idea? Does this idea solve a problem for someone? Can you figure out how to make this idea happen quickly? Is it relatively low maintenance? Can you get paid more than once for this idea?” ( :28)

“In May 2013, Julia quit her day job and began to live off her side hustle income, which was then bringing in more than $100,000 a year even though she typically only worked on-site at events one day a week.” ( :28)

“He decided to charge $55 an hour for online sessions, and $65 an hour if meeting in person.” ( :29)

“Over time, the tutoring business became an entry point for this higher-level work, for which he charges somewhere in the range of $80-$125 an hour.” ( :30)

“Now imagine that a rich relative gives you a stock certificate that’s worth a great deal of money, at least on paper. However, there’s no way to exchange it into actual money if no one will buy it. It doesn’t matter if that stock is supposedly worth a million dollars. If there’s no way to exchange it into cash, you’re not any better off than you were without it. Side hustle ideas are like that stock certificate.” ( :30)

“Generally speaking, there are three broad categories of side hustles. You can sell a product, whether one of your own or someone else’s, you can provide a service, or you can be a middleman of some kind.” ( :32)

“In my last book, Born for This, I told the story of Harry Campbell, an Uber driver who created an online community called The Rideshare Guy. Instead of just ferrying people around all the time, he now also earns money coaching other drivers and serving as an expert commentator on the booming rideshare industry. This is what I mean by a nextlevel idea. See the difference? Since new drivers are signing up all the time, Harry’s market demand is nearly inexhaustible.” ( :33)

“Develop a travel concierge service to help people when they miss their flights” ( :34)

“Sell your musings on business, art, or culture as a freelance writer • Start a membership website, where people pay a monthly or annual fee to access useful information about a specific topic” ( :34)

“• What will you need to get started, and how much will it cost? • What potential obstacles stand in the way of launching your idea? • How hard will it be for you to get your first sale? • Has anyone ever done something like this before? • If everything goes right, what’s the best-case scenario? • If everything goes wrong, what’s the worst-case scenario?” ( :38)

“Chevrolet Cruze. “Imagine leasing a Chevy Cruze for $18 a month and renting it out for $35 a day,” he wrote in a blog post. “You don’t have to imagine it because that’s pretty much what I’m doing.”” ( :41)

“There’s an old joke about a bar in Silicon Valley, the original hub of the startup scene. A bar opens and is wildly popular—sort of. A million people walk into it, but don’t buy anything. The bar then declares massive success, and the founders “exit” by selling their company to a group of investors. It’s a good joke that reflects a very bad business experience. It doesn’t matter how many people walk into your bar; what matters is how many people buy something. An overfunded startup may be able to play hard and fast with the central law of economics (don’t spend more than you make), but for a scrappy side hustler, this is not a winning strategy.” ( :47)




“Meredith Floyd-Preston is a proud Waldorf teacher in Oregon, and for years has immersed herself in studying and developing the most effective curriculum for her students. She’s also been a reliable resource for other teachers, especially new ones who aren’t used to the novel approach that the Waldorf method requires. All this hard work led her to an observation: designing custom lessons takes a lot of time! A key element of the Waldorf approach is that the teacher prepares curriculum herself, rather than teaching from a textbook—but for busy teachers, this can be incredibly time-consuming and tedious. In looking for ways to lighten this workload, both for herself and her fellow teachers, Meredith noticed that a few curriculum resources were available for purchase, but only by schools, not individual teachers. Furthermore, the Waldorf method was becoming increasingly popular within the homeschooling movement, but homeschooling parents didn’t usually have the same training that credentialed instructors did, and they had even less access to resources.” ( :51)

“The ability to begin turning the idea into action in a short period of time FEASIBILITY: The potential to make money from this idea, also in a short period of time PROFITABILITY: Not only is this a good idea, it’s a good idea now PERSUASION:” ( :53)

“1. Y ou’re not making a lifelong decision, you’re looking for the right idea at the right time. Save all your other ideas for later—you may end up coming back to them at some point. 2. Hang on to those extra ideas, but never save your best idea for later. Use the selector tool to figure out which idea is strongest and has the most potential, and then lead with that. 3. If you still can’t decide after all the analysis, just pick what feels right at the moment. When it comes to side hustles, action is almost always better than inaction. Even if you end up changing course later, you’re still gaining valuable experience and building valuable skills.” ( :56)

“1. Who else is offering the same thing or something similar 2.How your idea will be better or different” ( :59)

“Do you have $10? Have you ever used Facebook? I’m guessing the odds are 99 percent or higher that the answer to both questions is yes. If you have a big idea and want to get some real-world feedback (not just from your friends) before going further, you can set up an advertisement and see how people respond. No need to rent a billboard—with Facebook you can get it going in less than an hour and as little as $10. In Appendix 2, you can read a ten-step plan on how it works. The details are a little technical, so I’ve also included a link to a website with screenshots.” ( :61)

“As different as they are, these concepts have two important qualities in common. First, they’re simple. From a single sentence, or even just a few words, you know exactly what they are. Second, these items all have a clear benefit: they are fun. This is key because people are naturally resistant to spending money when they don’t understand how the purchase will help them. True, you don’t need any of them—life will probably continue its usual course if you don’t start making gin in your bathtub, for example. Yet these offers were still persuasive because there was an immediate, understandable benefit to potential buyers.” ( :61)

“It wasn’t that hard for Andrea to get her “Airbnb for dogs” business up and running—she had her first doggy day-care booking within a week. But then she went above and beyond, doing everything she could to make the best possible impression on prospective puppy parents. She continued to post lots of photos and respond to inquiries quickly, mostly because that helped to reassure dog owners, but also with an eye on the platform’s” ( :61)

“algorithm that rewarded more active engagement. That kind of attention to detail, drawn from her observations of why some dog landlords did much better than others, set her apart.” ( :62)

“That’s when she decided instead of building websites for people, she’d show them how to do it themselves, using the popular WordPress platform. It was surprisingly easy to get started. The very day she posted a link to a free course in a Facebook group for entrepreneurs, someone signed up for her mailing list. That person then purchased a” ( :63)

“product she recommended, and Shannon earned a commission on the sale. Right away she knew she was on to something that people needed.” ( :64)

“When I asked Shannon how she imagined her most likely customer, she ran through a list of features: a woman in her mid-twenties or early thirties who wants to have more control over her schedule and income. She may want to travel, or stay home with her kids, or simply run a business from home—or she may have no idea what she wants to do but does know that she’s not fulfilled with what she’s doing now.” ( :64)

“When John Lee Dumas of San Diego started a podcast called Entrepreneur on Fire, he had high hopes. He wanted to gain a large audience and reach a lot of people. There’s nothing wrong with that vision, but in starting out he made a critical, yet common mistake. In defining his audience so broadly, he failed to crystallize a clear vision of whom the podcast (and eventually the community) was actually for.” ( :64)

“He took out a piece of paper and began writing about that imaginary person. He called him “Jimmy,” and he added a ton of details about him. Jimmy was thirty-four years old and a married father of two kids. His wife was a stay-at-home mom, and every day Jimmy drove exactly twenty-seven minutes to his office, where he worked from a cubicle.” ( :64)

“People often think, “I don’t want to leave anyone out,” John Lee told me. “But that’s wrong! This is scarcity thinking. When you focus all your efforts on that one person who is perfect for you, you’ll actually end up serving many more.”” ( :65)

“In his mind he thought of that third download as being from “Jimmy,” his ideal customer. Six hundred episodes later, each one now regularly gets downloaded thirty thousand times or more. He traces this success to being guy.* extremely specific about the people he serves, starting with that imaginary” ( :65)

“When John Lee Dumas wrote thirteen hundred words about Jimmy, his ideal podcast listener, it helped him gain a clear understanding of the people he wanted to serve. The description even included the names and ages of Jimmy’s imaginary children, how he liked to exercise, and what he watched on TV when he came home from work! You may not be able to get that detailed in describing your avatar, but don’t skip the most important part: understanding the pain that he or she is going through. In “Jimmy’s” case, that pain was his day job. Every day he spent hours trapped in the cubicle, not finding any meaning in” ( :65)

“the work but having to do it anyway to support his family.” ( :66)

“Recognizing that his bold ad was probably the best tool he had at his disposal for getting the attention of potential customers, he decided to expand its reach, running ads on Google with similar language about why his lessons were so spectacular. Less than a year later, he was regularly earning $80 an hour for lessons and decided to quit his job to hustle.* focus on further growing his side” ( :69)

“how your hustle will change someone’s life THE PROMISE: why they should purchase or sign up now THE PITCH: what it costs to purchase or sign up (and how to do it) THE PRICE:” ( :69)

“Your Idea: ________________ Your Promise: ________________ Your Pitch: ________________ Your Call to Action: ________________ Now put it all together in a couple of brief and catchy lines: Your Offer: ________________________________ ________________________________ ________________________________ ________________________________ ________________________________.” ( :70)

“• Write to a person, not a group. Remember the ideal customer from Day 8: talk directly to that person and pretend there is no one else in the world.” ( :71)

“$50 an hour for “the most awesome guitar lessons in the universe.” He gradually raised his rates until he reached what he thought the market could handle, somewhere between $80 and $120 an hour depending on the location of the lesson and how many lessons people paid for in advance. His first month, he earned $420. His second month, he earned $1,535. Just six months later, he was taking in $2,800 in a single month and was ready to quit his job—which he did.” ( :72)

“* Jake started the hustle while working a full-time job with a nine-month-old at home and a wife who also worked and went to school full-time. “There’s no perfect time to start,” he told me. “Just start.”” ( :72)

“David Venn, a Canadian, found love in Amsterdam when he met Praj, who is originally from Kathmandu, Nepal. Did you get all that? In any case, they got engaged and wanted to get married in a traditional ceremony back in Praj’s homeland. The trip was David’s first to Nepal, and he loved everything about the country—the people, of course, but also the art and in particular the fashion. The chilly Himalayan mountain ranges are the source of much of the world’s supply of cashmere, and the production of luxurious sweaters and scarves has been a hallmark of Nepalese culture for generations.” ( :73)

“David and Praj wanted to make some extra cash, so they decided to import cashmere shawls from Nepal and resell them for a profit back in David’s native Canada. Cha-ching!” ( :74)

“That’s because the story of Corala Cashmere is a great origins story: a compelling and inspiring narrative of the why behind their side hustle. No matter what it is you’re selling, you need an origins story, too.” ( :74)

“! You’re better than a multinational corporation that pretends to be “just like” their millions of customers. You have a real origins story, and you are the hero of it.” ( :75)

“I’ve always been interested in _________, so I decided to try _________. I was frustrated by _________ and knew there was a better way. I made _________ to help other people with the same problem. I started this hustle because I noticed _________. There didn’t seem to be anyone else doing anything about it (or the existing businesses were missing something important), so I made _________. Loosely using this formula, here’s how a couple of other people superheroes in the book might describe their origins stories:” ( :76)




“she quickly built a three-page website using a template and advertised custom-printed candy hearts at a higher price than what the unresponsive manufacturer charged. Since no one else was competing for this space, within a matter of days her site was number one in Google search results. That same day, she got her first order—then three more in quick succession.” ( :79)

“EVERYTHING IS FIGUREOUTABLE My friend Marie Forleo likes to say that everything is “figureoutable.” This lesson is well illustrated throughout Sarah’s story. She didn’t know how to do half the things she needed to start this business, but along the way, she figured it out. When she encountered problems, she found a way to solve them. When she hit obstacles, she searched for a way around them.” ( :80)

“Side hustlers are generally a resourceful bunch, and resourcefulness is often worth more than any amount of business experience or know-how. Don’t know how to get a business license where you live? Go online and type in “business license” followed by your state, province, or country. Not sure how to file your side hustle income on your taxes? Schedule a thirty-minute call with an accountant. The point is, where some people might see these things as obstacles, side hustlers know they are just details.” ( :81)

“Why was I surprised? Well, because in many cases, these questions were from people who had no idea what their business was actually going to do or how it would make money.” ( :81)

“”Hey, Paul, thanks for the chat! To recap, we agreed that I’d visit your workplace once a month for the next three months to assist with improving the interior design and office layout. My fee for this work (including a detailed report and any reasonable follow-up communication) is $1,500. You’ll pay 50% now and the other 50% after you receive the detailed report. Is that all correct? If so, I’ll send an invoice for the first 50% so I can get started right away!”” ( :83)

“With cost-plus pricing applied to a product, you first figure out how much it will cost to provide the product, and then you simply add on a markup (a dollar amount or a percentage) that serves as your profit. How much should you add? Ah, that’s the magic question—and the answer is different for everyone.” ( :86)

“Naturally, this doesn’t mean that she should charge a low price. Her clients pay for her skill and expertise, as well as the time she spends on all the tasks she needs to complete to make her projects successful.” ( :87)

“Don’t stray too far from market prices. Remember how Jake Posko, the guitar teacher, started out at $50 an hour and eventually moved to $80-$120 an hour. You may wonder why he didn’t keep moving it even higher. Well, as he experimented with different prices, Jake discovered that there was a natural ceiling for his new profession. No matter how awesome his “most awesome guitar lessons in the universe” were, $80-$120 was the highest acceptable range for guitar lessons in general. If he priced any higher, he’d lose clients. If he priced much lower, he’d lose money.” ( :89)

“Therefore, one of his articles on the new site was called “Answered: Can I watch Netflix on a cruise?”” ( :92)

“In less than a year, the side hustle was making more than $3,000 a month.” ( :92)

“In this scenario, you have to bake the bread from scratch—no ordering out. There are a couple of ways to approach this project. You could take a deep dive into the annals of bread history, camping out in the library to read up on the science of bread making. You could arrange visits to half a dozen bakeries to interview master bakers, comparing their answers on the ratio of flour to water, preferred oven temperature, and so on. Or you could skip all that, and simply get to work. In the fast-track baking plan, you’d” ( :92)

“look online for a recipe that provided simple instructions, and you could probably find one in thirty seconds or less. Without going to great effort, your tasks would be: 1.Find a good recipe 2.Gather the necessary ingredients 3.Follow the recipe step by step” ( :93)

“Successful side hustlers create or obtain a similar recipe to take their hustle from idea to implementation. For each step of that process, there will be “ingredients”—the tasks you need to tackle, the resources you need to acquire, or the deliverables you need to produce—in order to complete your recipe for success. The more you can simplify your idea and break down the creation process into clear, specific steps, the easier it will be to get up and running quickly.” ( :93)

“1. What will people experience after purchasing your offer? 2.What needs to happen for you to deliver that experience to them?” ( :96)

“Want to experience what it feels like to rob a cash register without going to jail? Connect your smartphone to your payment system, then turn on payment notifications. For best results, assign the payment notification an audio alert that sounds like a cash register (“cha-ching!”). Yes, I know—you’re already getting bombarded with countless Facebook messages, texts, and probably a bunch of other stuff. Do you really want a stream of annoying notifications adding to that? Trust me: getting notifications that inform you of new money in your bank account will not be annoying. It will be awesome. If they do become distracting at some point, you can turn them off. Until then, experience the joy that arrives when your cash register phone announces a new sale.” ( :99)

“• Payment in full prior to beginning work • Partial payment prior to beginning work, the rest at completion • Payment in full when the work is completed” ( :99)

“A very basic contract should specify what you’ll do, how much you’ll be paid, and when you’ll get paid. That’s it.” ( :100)

“To her surprise, a lot of them took her up on it. By the end of the day, she’d made $1,000.” ( :102)

“Between that project and the original e-book, the hustle is now bringing in at least $2,000 a month. She feels like she could invest more time and see it take off even further, but she’s also happy with the day job—so for now, she keeps the side hustle on the side.” ( :102)

“Fortunately, Amanda was smarter than me. She made sure to troubleshoot this process carefully, buying her own product using a different email address than the one she used to set up the account. She then made sure that everything worked as it should, first visiting the download page she was directed to after purchase, then checking her email to make sure the confirmation message came through, and finally downloading the book through both methods.” ( :107)

“month—but with more experience and a portfolio of actual wedding photos, he quickly became able to charge a lot more. He now does at least one wedding a month for a starting price of $3,500.” ( :110)

“He was already a good photographer. What he needed to learn was how to be a good wedding photographer. The single greatest thing he could do to prepare for his friend’s wedding was to get experience at another wedding, so that’s exactly what he concentrated on.” ( :110)

“easier, more convenient, or more enjoyable (or all three), so gently point it out.” ( :111)

“Long ago, I lived on a hospital ship in West Africa. My day job was as a volunteer aid worker. In the evenings and early mornings, I moonlighted (literally) by working on a side hustle that was based in the United States. It was just me and one assistant, both of us working very limited hours—and as the hustle was taking off, there was no shortage of things to do and emails to respond to. I sometimes felt overwhelmed trying to manage everything, especially since my main priority was the work we were doing in post-conflict countries like Liberia and Sierra Leone.” ( :112)




“in. I speak from experience: as an author, my house is never cleaner than when I’m writing a book.” ( :116)

“I also know, however, that if I can overcome this resistance, I’ll be much happier when I actually get to work.” ( :116)

“Two friends start an “Uber for Lawncare” hustle with the goal of serving lawn care professionals, figuring it out as they go along (they end up making more than $1 million a year)” ( :117)

“You can remain in this “already launched but not quite ready” phase for as long as you’d like. Gmail was in beta for over five years while it had more than 300 million users. This became a bit of a joke in tech circles—how can a service with 300 million customers claim to be in development?—” ( :118)

“It also produces a steady income of at least $7,500 a month, allowing Steven tremendous flexibility to design the rest of his life however he sees fit.” ( :118)

“With manufacturing costs of $1 per calendar and a product that sells for $15, these profit margins are much better than any she could have made running the restaurant— and the work is far less stressful.” ( :121)

“Granted, delicious cookies sold by children are one of the easiest things to sell—and that’s exactly the point: Girl Scout cookies sell not because of a manipulative pitch, or because of pushy sales tactics. They sell because people like them” ( :122)

“I once had a large group of people on an email list I hadn’t written to in a long time. I wanted to promote something new I’d made, but I worried about flooding inboxes. My fear was that my subscribers would be annoyed by the communication—that I was reaching out after all that time simply because I had something to sell. I decided to take the risk and included a note at the top saying “Hey, I’m back!” Indeed, I received a small number of annoyed replies. But to my surprise, I received far more notes from readers saying that they’d missed me. One even emailed me to say “Can you subscribe me to every list you have?” These replies made me realize that I’d actually been too conservative in my marketing. After that experience, I started emailing more frequently. Remember as well that if some people unsubscribe to a mailing list (or otherwise communicate their lack of interest), that’s not always a bad thing.” ( :122)

“They may not have been the ideal customer for your offer anyway, and once they’re gone, it will be easier to focus on the people who are.” ( :123)

“At the end of this course, users will________. By buying this widget, customers will ________. I will improve my clients’ lives by ________.” ( :123)

“say “Leave your dog with me and feel less guilty for abandoning him all day”—but they very well might say, “With my pet-sitting service, your dog will be loved, walked, played with, and cared for while you’re away from home.” See how it works?” ( :123)

“I responded by suggesting that she consider why people want help with their résumé and profile. Is it because there is intrinsic value in those things by themselves? (Spoiler: not really.) More likely, they want to improve their résumé or profile because they believe it will increase their chances of getting a job, or getting a better job. Or they think it will help them connect to more of the right people, or ultimately be more successful in a variety of ways. Put another way, people don’t buy a drill because they want a drill; they buy a drill because they want a hole. The drill is just the means to that end.” ( :124)

“”I just went to everyone’s house and said, ‘Can I have a $30,000 donation for the Girl Scouts?’ “When they said ‘No,’ I said, ‘Would you at least buy a box of Girl Scout cookies?’ ” She ended up selling more than $80,000 worth of cookies.” ( :125)

“The shop was up and running within ten days of Brianna’s first learning about the space, and she kept it open for the next month. Thanks to lots of shopping during the holidays, by the end of the month she had cleared a profit of more than $7,000, $2,000 of which she donated to charity. Brianna is now planning to develop her own product line for her next adventure in retailing—and she’s not waiting to finish college before she makes it happen.” ( :127)

“general cheerleaders who can provide support and pitch in in various ways SUPPORTERS:” ( :127)

“advice* 1 guides or experts who give you specific feedback and MENTORS: trusted authority figures who have the ability to connect you with potential INFLUENCERS: customers and help you get the word out people who represent your avatar and can offer detailed, honest IDEAL CUSTOMERS: opinions on the many “Should I do this or that?” questions you’ll have” ( :128)

“Think long and hard about your ten people. Make your list, and then write or call each person to tell them about your project. Remember that everyone is busy (including you!), so get to the point quickly, and be sure to include a specific “ask” so that people can easily no.* 2 say yes or” ( :128)

“In the first month, she earned more than $1,000. She couldn’t believe she had just been paid to look at photos on the Internet and post her favorites, but the money was real.” ( :132)

“As a result, Gabby’s network grew and grew, from tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands and finally to more than one million, Best of all, Gabby’s Pinterest endeavor has made over $40,000 over the course of three and a half years. She wasn’t a celebrity, even an online one. She was just smart in figuring out how to give people something they want.” ( :132)

“1. Your product or service (what you offer) 2.Your offer (how you present it) 3.Your price (how much it costs)” ( :133)

“• Long vs short copy on your sales page • Word order, especially in headlines and calls to action • Website navigation and user experience • Free trial vs low-priced trial (or vs no trial) *2 • Testimonials from happy customers vs experts’ ratings or reviews • Hard sell vs soft sell (or both)” ( :134)

“”There are only a limited number of items! I’ll miss out if I don’t buy one.” SCARCITY: “The deal is going to go away soon. I’ll miss out if I don’t buy it now.” URGENCY:” ( :139)

“Adam and Karol, who started a “fire sale” consisting of a bundle of popular digital products. They called it Only 72, referring to the fact that the sales would last for seventy-two hours only before disappearing forever. This project was a huge success, producing income of multiple six figures before the founders moved on to other projects. Adam and Karol weren’t the first to produce this kind of sale, but it wasn’t common in their field at the time, and they did it in a unique way—that’s why it worked.” ( :139)

“It reminded me of the story of the Million Dollar Homepage. In the early days of the Internet, a British student named Alex Tew had the crazy idea to sell one million dollars’ worth of ad space on a site consisting of a single page.” ( :139)

“Like a lot of crazy ideas, it worked—partly because it sounded ridiculous, and partly because Alex was able to generate a flurry of media hits, largely thanks to being first to concept.* 2 think up such an improbable” ( :140)

“Making money for yourself, outside of your day job, is a transformative experience. Over and over I’ve seen how empowering it can be, especially for people who’ve always worked traditional jobs and haven’t ever struck out on their own.” ( :143)

“After Max’s unexpected $200 surprise, he resumed work on the project. He wrote more reviews, updated the pages, and filled out the content a bit more. Within a few months, he was regularly earning an average of $700 each month, without adding anything to the site or otherwise doing anything at all. It really is a “set it and forget about it” hustle. Like some of the others you’ve read about, it probably won’t last forever, but that’s okay. In the meantime, it’s allowed him to take two extra vacations a year.” ( :144)




“The results were lackluster, but he still believed in the concept. Then, he tried creating his own website, Résumé Redesign. But this didn’t quite get off the ground either. Finally, more than a year after he’d filled his first order, he realized something. He didn’t want to be a designer doing client work, creating visual résumés one at a time, from scratch. What he wanted to do was sell a template. He called the new business Foundry Resumes, and he created sixteen unique designs. It was a lot of work to create so many templates, but template is the key word: once he made them, they didn’t need to be changed or customized, or at least not by him. Tim would sell the templates, and customers would personalize them on their own time.” ( :148)

“Within a few months, this side hustle was earning more than $450 a month.” ( :148)

“• Profit (income minus expenses) • Growth (number of new prospects, customers, or clients) project)* 1 • Time (how many hours per week you spend starting and operating the” ( :149)

“Résumés are boring. PROBLEM: Offer custom, visually appealing résumés on demand. SOLUTION: REVISED STRATEGY Résumés are boring. PROBLEM: Offer a series of résumé templates for sale, allowing customers to do SOLUTION: their own customization.” ( :150)

“Chances are, though, once you’re hooked on hustling, you’ll probably want another project. If you’ve reached maximum output, simply go back to the list of ideas you put together when we started, or come up with a new idea entirely. Now that you’re an experienced side hustler, you probably have no shortage of ideas and should have no trouble getting one of them off the ground.” ( :151)

“Regrouping and refining are the superhero skills of side hustle success. Consider this quote from Bill Gates: “Headlines are misleading. Bad news is a headline, and gradual improvement is not.” Tracking, testing, and refining are all about achieving gradual improvement. You might not make a lot of fanfare when you gradually improve an existing hustle, but you’ll probably make more money.” ( :153)

“The first year of the hustle, he earned around $5,000. Each year after that, he’s either doubled or tripled that figure, to the point where it now brings in more than $100,000 a year exclusively from his hustle.” ( :156)

“After putting together a simple sales page, he asked a friend to write about it in an online business forum. Right away, more than ten people signed up, paying a $49 fee. Before the end of the week, another ten payments had come through. Adam had another side project!” ( :161)

“Ninety days in, Guest Post Tracker was bringing in $1,000 a month. By further systematizing the process and repeatedly testing to improve conversion using the same kind of A/B testing I wrote about on Day 20, it was soon up to $2,000 a month. Six weeks after we first talked, Adam wrote me back to say this kind of process work had helped even more: the site was now up to $3,000 a month.” ( :162)

“sent right after purchase: “Welcome, new customer!” MESSAGE #1, sent the next day: “Watch this video to learn the most important MESSAGE #2, elements of your new service.” sent three days later: “These advanced features will make your life MESSAGE #3, easier.” sent a week later: “Hey, just checking in. Is everything working for you, MESSAGE #4, questions?”* and do you have any” ( :165)

“We all know that you shouldn’t use the same password more than PASSWORD RECORDER. once, or at least not for everything, but these days you practically need a login to turn the coffee maker on in the morning. How do you keep up with so many passwords? The simple answer is: you don’t. You register with a system that generates secure passwords and stores them for you so you don’t have to remember them. Examples: LastPass, RoboForm, Dashlane” ( :166)

“Always remember that a hustle is different from other startup ventures or businesses. You don’t have to listen to the advice of experts or follow conventional wisdom. You don’t have to “scale.” You don’t have to hire employees or assistants, virtual or otherwise. There is no single “right way.” There’s only the right way for you.” ( :169)


Kitchen Sink


“• Brief guides to several popular hustles discussed in the SIDE HUSTLE STARTER KITS: book • How to use Facebook ads to HOW TO VALIDATE AN IDEA WITH $10 AND A FACEBOOK ACCOUNT: get immediate feedback • A template for learning more about your WRITE A LETTER TO YOUR IDEAL CUSTOMER: target market • A quick primer from my go-to expert BUY A RENTAL PROPERTY WITH A $1,575 DOWN PAYMENT: on real estate hustling • Various resources and referrals RESOURCES AND FREE STUFF:” ( :172)

“Create a step-by-step guide that shows customers exactly how to do BUSINESS MODEL: something. People want to learn, and they’ll pay for the right materials. WHY: Low. AVERAGE STARTUP COST: Low. EASE OF STARTUP: Variable. LONG-TERM POTENTIAL: Teaching, logical thinking, and marketing (once it’s written, you’ll need SKILLS REQUIRED: to get the word out!). Potential for truly passive income. BENEFITS: Potential consumer resistance; may be hard to compete against free resources. DOWNSIDES: WORKFLOW:” ( :175)

“Do you have $10? Have you ever used Facebook? I’m guessing the odds are 99 percent or higher that the answer to both questions is yes. If you have a big idea and want to get some real-world feedback (not just from your friends) before going further, you can simply set up an advertisement and see how people respond. No need to rent a billboard— with Facebook you can get it going in less than an hour and as little as $10. Here’s how.” ( :180)

“Write a blog post or create a short video all about the problem that your new hustle will solve. Go deep: describe how the problem seriously affects people’s lives, and paint the picture of what life would be like if that problem were solved. At the very end, mention the potential solution (your idea!), and include a link to a landing page where people can sign up to learn more.” ( :180)

“2. Create a Facebook page dedicated to your potential hustle. Post three to five links, images, or videos related to the problem you solve before running any ads. This is so that when someone sees your ad and clicks on the name of the page, they don’t see a completely deserted Facebook page.” ( :180)

“. Define your first “audience” for the ad. This is Facebook’s term for the people who will see your ad. When you go through the interface, you’ll be asked a series of questions to narrow down the audience. For this exercise, your audience should have no more than 50,000 people in it. 4.Use different interests or demographics to map out a second audience. This is so you can show your ad to two distinct groups of people to see if either responds better. For example, you may want to test men versus women, married people versus single people, people who “like” show tunes versus those who “like” hip-hop, or any number of other variables. 5.Write some strong copy for your ad. When in doubt, make it long—short ad copy is often too vague or boring. You could even use the first couple of paragraphs of your blog post as your ad text. 6.Find a great image for your ad. This is important, because people will be drawn to strong visual images. You can find plenty of free stock photography online (just be sure it’s really free—if you’re not sure, it probably isn’t). is one source that I’ve used before. 7.Post your blog post to your Facebook page, using your ad copy above the link. If the” ( :180)

VIP!!!! PROBAT OVO (note on p.180)


“image Facebook pulls from your post is different from the one you wanted, it’s easy to change it. 8.”Boost” your post, selecting the audience that you put together in step #3. Spend $5 and have the boosted post run for forty-eight hours. 9.”Boost” the same post again, this time with the second audience you selected. Spend $5 again and let it run for forty-eight hours. 10.After you’ve spent the $10, take a look at your metrics. How many clicks did your ad get, and which audience responded better? How many people clicked on the link to your landing page? How many actually signed up? If 10 percent or more of the people who landed on your blog post clicked on the link to your landing page, that’s widely considered to be a pretty good sign that people are interested in the product or service that you’re thinking of offering.” ( :181)

“Hey there, You have a growing business, and sales are hopping. To keep up with demand, you’ve had to hire more people. Your warehouse is a big space, so it’s hard to keep cool, and air-conditioning isn’t an option. Throughout the day, you notice that your employees work hard, but inevitably they get tired and run-down in the heat. That’s no surprise: it’s really hot! Those off-the-shelf fans won’t cut it. I know what it’s like—back when I was in college, I used to work in a warehouse. Most employees didn’t last very long in the summer, even when they were hard workers. That’s why, after I grew up and took another job, I spent all my free time designing the world’s best ceiling fans. These fans aren’t cheap, but when you install them, you’ll see an immediate difference. From the very first day you install my fans, your employees will be happier and healthier. Your business will end up retaining them longer and making more money. Most of all, you’ll be able to focus on growing the business, and you won’t have this nagging heat problem any more. Can I help? Sincerely, The Fan Guy” ( :182)

“If you live in an area that features low-priced homes, you can apply for an FHA loan, which only requires a 3.5 percent down payment. On a $45,000 home, that’s a down payment of just $1,575. I’d recommend having another $2,000-$3,000 in your bank account to deal with any emergencies that arise. That’s not as cheap as a $100 startup, but it’s far less than people think.” ( :185)

“This is true for any major city. Seattle is a couple hours from Port Angeles. Portland is a few hours from Boise. L.A. is four hours from Vegas. Manhattan is a couple hours from Philadelphia.” ( :185)

“Not every side hustle made the cut for the final manuscript draft. Regretfully, a story of someone who ships live crickets to reptile owners was removed after much editing. Also eliminated from consideration: non-alcoholic Jell-O shots, a kit to prevent seagulls from nesting on roofs (slogan: “Seagull proof your roof!”), and an alarm clock that electrocutes your nipples.” ( :186)

Check out more book notes at How I Read 90 Books In The Past 2 Years By Reading 20 Pages A Day

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