(Spoiler Alert: None of these methods are a get rich quick scheme and all will require a lot of hard work)
There are endless opportunities to make an income outside of your 9-to-5. I am big on the idea of working on your own goals outside of your job. If you are putting every ounce of your effort and energy towards work you are not building anything for yourself. This does not have to mean just making money.
I mean bettering yourself in general, being a better family member (parent, brother, son, daughter, etc.), better community member, etc.
For the sake of this article however I will focus on the topic of making money online. Through the process of trying to build a successful online business you may just find yourself acquiring many skills, learning new things, and broadening your perspective thus bettering yourself in the process.
Below are 4 ways safety professionals can make money online in no particular order.
Blogging (Owning a Website)
I had to include blogging on this list since it is what I do to earn a side income. Nowadays blogs are considered the same as websites, the terms are often used interchangeably. Building an audience through blogging is extremely powerful in being able to create a side income over time.
There is an endless amount of ways to monetize a blog after you create valuable content and build an audience. You can choose to create a blog around safety or something totally different. If making an income with the blog is your goal some topics are better than others.
How Bloggers Make Money
Click here for a more complete list of possible ways to make money from blogging since it would take way too much space to do it in this post. I will outline a few ways this blog earns an income:
- Affiliate marketing is a common way blogs/websites make money. Affiliate marketing is essentially earning sales for another business and earning a commission for each sale. Amazon Affiliates Program is the web’s most popular affiliate program. If someone clicks a link to Amazon on this site and makes a purchase I earn 4% to 8% of the sale at no extra cost to them.
(Note: There are affiliate links in this post)
- Advertising is another popular way to earn money from a blog. There are many different advertising programs online. Google AdSense is a common one you see on almost every website. With AdSense, website owners earn money per thousand views as well as each time an ad is clicked on their site. The more traffic = the more money you can make. I choose not to run ads (at least thus far) to not impede the visitors experience on the site. The small bit of money I would earn is not worth it to me right now.
- Selling your own products is another common way to earn money from a blog. My e-book would be an example of selling a product. The list of possible products you can sell online is as endless as what you can buy online or in a store. I choose products that are passive to sell meaning that they do not require my time to sell. If someone buys my e-book I have a service that automatically delivers it to the buyer. I just get a message from Paypal that someone paid me- pretty cool right?
This site really isn’t making me much at all right now. I would like it to be earning a decent monthly income by the end of this year, but I am focused on creating valuable content as well as building traffic. I could be making more money by locking up content and making people pay for it, advertising more, or selling more products but I choose not to.
I have other online businesses that I am working on that will create more of an income than this site so my plan is to use this site to make safety pros aware of other projects I am working on. So while this one will not be directly earn me a large income it will help to build up audience and customers of other services/products I create online.
Creating a Podcast
If you are not familiar with podcasts you are truly missing out. Podcasts are digital audio files that are available to download and listen to. There are podcasts on everything imaginable. Podcasts can consist of someone telling stories, an interview, conversations between individuals, and anything in between.
They are a great way to learn or to listen to for entertainment. (Quick side note: Podcasts are free. If you have an iPhone look for a purple icon on your home screen with the word “Podcast” underneath. You can also find them using different apps or just through websites.)
There are at least ten or so podcasts on workplace safety. The main one I listen to is Blaine Hoffmann’s The Safety Pro Podcast. Blaine does episodes on different workplace safety topics. As of this writing some of his latest topics include confined space entry, lean safety, and online safety training.
If you have a lot of experience with certain topics relating to safety you could do a podcast on workplace safety. There is certainly enough room in the workplace safety niche for another safety podcast. That being said, you can also choose to do one on another topic. For example, if you love planting and taking care on bonsai trees you could have a podcast on that. And yes there are podcasts out there dedicated to bonsai trees.
How Podcasters Make Money
There are multiple ways to make money podcasting. The main method is advertising on each episode of the podcast once you get a fair number of downloads per month or episode. You can also use the podcast as a way to make consumers aware of other products or businesses you are offering. For example, if you own a consulting business podcasting would be a great way to showcase what you know and possibly get leads for new clients.
Teaching Online (Udemy and Other Similar Platforms)
There are many platforms out there that make it easy for an individual to create an online course and put it up for sale. A popular one I use to consume content on whatever I am trying to learn about it is Udemy. Udemy is an online teaching and learning marketplace. Individuals can create courses for free using their software and put it up for sale on their platform.
How Instructors Make an Income on Udemy
Udemy makes their money when the course is sold. The instructor (you) earns anywhere from 25% to 97% of the price of the course depending on how the customer was acquired. For more information please check out this page.
You as the instructor of the course may only make a small amount per sale, but it can really add up over time. Also it is pretty passive once the course is up meaning it does not take much effort to maintain the courses. You may have to update info on slides as time progresses or answer student questions as they come up. Other than that the courses can sit there and make money if it is on a topic students want to learn about.
Writing and Selling e-Books
Self-publishing e-books on Amazon Kindle or your own platform (a website for example) is another way to earn an income online. The internet has made it incredibly easy to publish your own books. There are plenty of examples of individuals who have made a lot of money doing so. If you have certain expertise in the safety field, self-publishing a book could be the perfect side hustle for you.
How e-Book Authors Make Money
If you publish a book on Amazon Kindle’s platform you earn 70% of the sale price if the price of the book is over $2.99. If it is under $2.99 you earn only 35% of the sale. This may sound like a little bit of money but imagine if you have 10 books online that you sell for $4.99 each and they each sell 5 copies a month, that is $175.00 extra dollars a month (after Amazon’s cut)! The beauty of e-books is after you create them they can sit there and earn you an income separating your time from money.
Some Resources to Learn More About Making an Income Online
There is an endless amount of resources to find out more about making money online. I will provide a few resources here that have helped me in learning about online business.
- Gary Vaynerchuk. Gary’s content is a major influence on my approach to this website and he is a main reason why this website exists. While he gives tactical advice in his content I mention him more because of the importance of mindset when tackling an endeavor like the ones mentioned here in this post. I am not going to explain who he is here because it will take up too much space. Check out these two videos to get a better idea of what his content is all about: A 5 Minute Plea to Do and The Last Video You Have to Watch in 2017 or check out my review of his latest book by scrolling to the bottom of this post here: Recommended Books for Safety Professionals.
- Smart Passive Income with Pat Flynn. Pat Flynn was an architect until 2008 until he lost his job during the recession. Since then he has built multiple online businesses and shares his experience on his podcast and blog Smart Passive Income. He even shares income reports of how he makes his money online. December 2017’s income report was for a whopping $167,000. That is not total amount or for a year, that is for ONE MONTH. His 12 month running total at the time of this writing was $2.1 million. If you think making an income online isn’t possible Pat begs to differ.
- Side Hustle Nation with Nick Loper. The Side Hustle Nation Podcast is a great way to learn about many different methods to make a side income. It is full of ideas and tactical advice on executing on the ideas mentioned in this post as well as many others. Be sure to check out his blog or podcast!
I am ruthlessly passionate about learning and creating online revenue streams outside of my day job. I enjoy it. I have not cashed in totally yet, but the knowledge I have gained over the last few years as well as building this website up has allowed me to reach a place where I will be able to earn an income online.
It really is not all about the money for me, I just love figuring out how to solve problems and create solutions that bring value to others. The reason this site was created is because there was a lack of quality free safety talks online. I knew from what I have learned about building websites is that if I created enough value for others that the traffic would eventually come. And it has. The site is visited by over 25,000 safety professionals each month (as of November 2018) and continues to grow.
Each one of the platforms mentioned above compliment one another. Meaning if you have a successful blog then it will be easier to market and sell online or courses or e-books. That is the idea behind this site. I will give away plenty of free value here in the short term so that I can market other products and services in the long term in a non salesy way.
If I can help you out with an idea or goal you have relating to building an online income let me know. Shoot me an email at Jeremy@safetytalkideas.com and I will gladly help you out in any way I can.