Monday, April 7, 2014

Monetizing Your Hobbies

In the age of the internet, anyone can be a part-time capitalist. Websites are cheap to host (usually a few hundred dollars a year, at the most) and the profit potential is therefore stratospheric. There are many ways to monetize a website: ads, affiliate linking, paid subscriptions if your traffic is big enough, etc. A combination of all of these is probably most ideal.

In this regard I would recommend making a website about whatever hobby you may have, and interact with the community around it. Add social media accounts to it (yes, use it in the right way).

I have begun this with the new OBD Wiki, but as I have mentioned, this was essentially an accident, a quirk of fate.

My real aim was to start a website and forum based around military history, a hobby I have had for over ten years now. I'm not quite sure when I started becoming an amateur military historian, so to speak. It may have been in 9th grade, when I first read the Odyssey, that I began to have a profound appreciation for military events. The mythos surrounding the Trojan War moved me, as it still does, and inspired me to take a larger look at military events.

There were a bit of problems with the website, but all is good now, and I launched it about a week ago. Showdown of Arms and its forum has gotten off to a good start and is growing slowly. I of course encourage my readers to join. If you like the stuff I write here, you will like what I do over there, and if you are interested in the topic you are welcome to submit an article to the publication. And of course, PC apologetics has no place there. I will keep it as un-PC as my hosting terms allow.

The point of this is that we all have a hobby, and in the age of the internet, there is a relatively easy way to monetize that hobby. Why not get richer by doing something you love? It's a win-win situation.

If your hobby is photography, make a photography site and add value to the hobby while selling products related to photography. If your hobby is some sport, do the same. Make it as interactive as possible too. Add social buttons and a forum, consider turning it into a publication, and bring as much value as you can (this was called "Value-Added Content" in Guerrilla Social Media Marketing, which I have recommended on my Epics page). This should work for just about any hobby except counting grass.

If you need a host, I'd be happy to recommend my own: Siteground. The user-interface is extremely friendly, and I have gotten nothing but the highest quality, professional support when I needed it, and all this for around $7.00 a month too for the basic plan (if you want some services such as hack monitoring).

Now, will you be able to make a living off of this? Probably not, but you can definitely turn it into a great source of side-income to boost you up that much further.

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