The Six Million Dollar Side Hustle
When I was growing up, one of my favorite tv shows was The Six Million Dollar Man starring Lee Majors. Majors played Steve Austin, an astronaut who was tragically injured in an experimental airplane crash. Austin’s right eye, right arm, and both legs were injured beyond repair. The OSI (Office of Scientific Intelligence) performs surgery to save Austin’s life and in the process they give Austin bionic body parts to replace his shattered ones. The bionic eye and limbs give Austin superhuman capabilities that he puts to work as a secret agent (think Captain America without the costume and shield). Til this day, I still remember the show open; Austin is on the operating table and the narrator says “We will make him better than he was before. Better, stronger, faster” That sums up where I am with my various side hustles: I’m improving them every day, getting ready to take on the world.
Part of building a side hustle empire is building a personal brand and obviously the blog is a big part of that. At first my intention was to publish once a week but I was struggling to produce quality posts. I’m not going to publish something just to say that I did it. I respect your time more than that so I switched to publishing only when something new was happening with one of my business ventures. But that didn’t’ feel right either. If you’re kind enough to give me your attention, the least I can do is post on a regular basis so you’re not left wondering whether you wasted your time following my adventures. It turns out that I just needed to sharpen my writing skills a bit. I’ve reached a point now where I’m able to generate quality posts even when I’m not feeling particularly inspired. My writing still need work but I’m progressing nicely.
Another part of personal branding is having a clean presentation on social media. I know social media marketing but I’m a horrible graphic designer! Thankfully I have Melissa at Sunblue Designs working on a logo for The Side Hustle Grind page. Our final version should be finished within the next week or two. It will be great to have something that looks sharp instead of the Canva Frankenstein I cobbled together.
As some of you know, Brooklyn Classic is the apparel brand that I started with my brother Jason. Recently, we launched 3 promo videos with the lovely Tania Kop which were very well received. We have another commercial shoot scheduled for the week of May 1st. My brother came up with an amazing concept and I can’t wait for you all to see it!
Sales for Brooklyn Classic have been sluggish but we’re finding our cadence. We’ve been advertising exclusively on Facebook, and after several ads we have a much better idea of our audience, which is HUGE considering that we don’t have an endless marketing budget. We also just started posting on eBay. Our current vendor, Gearbubble, does a great job for us by making and shipping our products but customers can only purchase products off of their website. Some people are reluctant to purchase from a site they’re not familiar with and that has definitely hurt sales. eBay takes care of that problem and the vig we have to pay them to is worth it to reach a much bigger customer base that is accustomed to online purchasing.
The other project I’ve been working on, The Slash Generation, is coming up on its 1 year anniversary! I’m proud of the work that we’ve done. In a short amount of time, we have built a community and we’ve been able to consistently provide value. That’s the criteria for anything that I do whether it be Slash Gen, Brooklyn Classic, or my personal brand; I have to be able to bring value to the consumer or I simply won’t do it.
All of my side hustles are in the early stages so I’m constantly testing, pushing, moving fast on what works and ditching what doesn’t. There’s no formula for building a side hustle empire, but I hope by sharing my trials and tribulations I can help you get there quicker. Leave a comment below and let me know how your side hustles are progressing. Would love to hear how you’re doing, and answer any questions that you may have.