I received a cheque (or check – hey I’m Canadian!) in the mail the other day. You know how you can see through the little cellophane window of an envelope and you can tell that it’s a cheque? I’ll bet you get really excited when that happens – I know I do! I love being able to create passive income streams in my business and getting those surprises in the mail, but imagine my surprise when I opened up the envelope and saw this:
Yes, you are reading that correctly – the amount is $1.46. The postage to send it was $1.15. Pretty funny, right?
Not exactly going to fund my retirement or my ideal lifestyle, so I would say this is the wrong way to create passive income. There are several ways that I bring in passive income. But first, let’s look at what my definition of passive income is:
Passive income is setting something up once, so that it sends money regularly with little to no involvement
The cheque above was from Amazon for a Kindle book that I wrote. This book was written 3 years ago and I actually sold over a thousand copies. It was some work to write the book and get it up on the Kindle platform, but once it was up there, I confess I did zero marketing. Why? This was really just a test for me to see if I could get a book on Kindle. The amazing part about this is that I just let the Amazon machine do its thing and I made money from this. Imagine if I actually promoted it! This is really the wrong way to do passive income. Even though I made about three thousand dollars over three years, I could have done much better.
So what is the RIGHT way to create passive income? Here are five ways that you can bring income in on autopilot:
Affiliate marketing is a great way to bring in extra income. Basically, you promote other people’s products, whether it is on your website, email, social media, etc. and it gets tracked through a special link. You get paid when you make a sale. What I like about affiliate marketing is that you don’t even have to create the product. Someone else does all the work of making the product, you put a link somewhere and get paid. Look for things that compliment, but don’t compete with what you are already doing. When I had my wine making shop, I cross-promoted my services with a local cheese deli. They promoted me and I sent my clients over to them.
Remember where I said that I sold over a thousand copies of my book? OK. Confession time. This wasn’t big bucks. The book was only selling for $2.99. The thing you have to remember about a book is that is not a big money maker. However, for doing nothing, zero promotion, I was receiving cheques for a couple hundred dollars fairly regularly for a while. What I really like about writing a book is that it positions you as a expert in your field. Imagine if you wrote a series of books, promoted them one after another over a long period of time? Social media works great for this! And if you can get your book to best seller status (not hard to do – trust me on this), you really elevate your status and can earn more as a speaker, command higher fees for your services, etc.
Creating your own courses can be a lot of work up front, but once you have it online, if you have set everything up properly, there is not really much to do after that except watch the dollars roll in. However, in order to maximize your sales, you will need to be actively promoting it, such as putting it on social media, using promotion or affiliate partners and advertising. So it’s not quite passive, but there’s not really a huge amount of time investment if you have things automated. Having your own course also promotes you as an expert in your subject and connects you with your ideal audience.
What? But isn’t owning real estate a lot of work? It certainly can be, but my friend and client Mike Wolf is an international real estate investor and mentor and he teaches how to have your properties bring in positive cash flow without you having to deal with tenants and maintenance. I have personally invested in real estate and can tell you there is no greater joy than getting that rent cheque from your tenants every month.
The bottom line is that is best to have several different passive income streams coming in simultaneously. It’s even better when you tie it into your core business so that it positions you as an expert in your industry and builds relationships through trust and authority.
If this has sparked some great ideas for you to create some passive income streams for yourself, but you are unsure of how to promote them, contact me to see how we can use social media to drive traffic to your offers and help connect with your clients and create rockstar status for you.