Money, money, monayyyyy. Money is, in my not-so-humble opinion, freedom and security. Money allows you to make the choices you want to build your business in a way that is aligned with your goals, beliefs and philosophies. Money allows you to help the causes you are passionate about.
Money can change your life.
We spend our lives in the pursuit of dollars and cents through one job (or jobs) or another (or many others) and sometimes, it can seem like a dead end or a round-robin of opportunities that leave us wanting.
So how do you change that?
By claiming and owning your worth — and then, asking for it.
For cubicle warriors venturing out into side hustle land for the first time or for entrepreneurs creating their first rate sheets after their leap, this can be a daunting task. But it doesn’t have to be. This simple formula will help you determine what you should charge for the work you’re doing, what feels good to you AND how to grow your rates over time.
Step 1: What is Your Hourly Rate
If you’re working a salaried job, add up all of your benefits and salary (plus any 401K-matches, etc) and then divide the hours you work each week (all of them). That’s your current hourly rate. When you’re working as a contractor or consultant, your hourly rate should be higher based on the level of service you provide.
Step 2: What’s the Going Rate
This is where my Find Your Five formula comes in handy. Find five people who are doing what you do and see how they list their prices, what they share about their process… get intimately familiar with what the going rate is for the services you profile.
Step 3: What Would YOU Pay
If you needed someone with your skill level, background and knowledge, what would you pay them? Think about all different levels of investments and be truly honest with yourself about your experience and background. This one might take you some time but it is an important step.
Step 4: Ask Your Audience
Your audience will tell you what they’re willing to pay for the services you’re providing — they may not tell you directly, but they will tell you. A big indicator is if no one purchases your packages or services. It could be that your audience is a bit too small for the return you’re looking for, but, more likely and more often than not, it is that the price point is not in line with your location or service area.
Sept 5: Test… and Ask Again
Try out the prices and packages you’ve created… and then try again. Run a beta, ask people to test the project or program out. Don’t do work for free — that’s never a smart strategy — but find ways to get a test group together to help you move forward.
This is a process that should be repeated time and time again as you move forward in building your business, side hustle, and any entrepreneurial endeavor.
We’re all in business to get paid. And most of us would prefer to be paid sooner than later, yes? If you’ve answered no to this question, good for you! But for those of you that can’t wait for funds, I’ve compiled some of the best tools of the trade to get you paid quickly and keep your clients happy.
These payment systems work for independent contractors, freelancers or online business coaches, entrepreneurs and e-commerce brands.
All payment management systems use a payment gateway. This is a merchant service that authorizes credit card or direct payments for a purchase. If you’re not tech savvy, I recommend starting with PayPal, Stripe or Square as a payment gateway.
Ontraport is a robust system that isn’t just about payments — it’s a client/customer management tool. A CRM system, as some call it, that includes email management, landing pages, membership site management and so much more. This is a great option if you’re looking to keep everything in one place but it IS also pricey if you’re just starting out. Plans with payment pages are over $200 per month. Click here to learn if Ontraport is for your business.
This tool is really for freelancers and consultants. It’s a great tool if you’ve got a small team working in different locations or if you’re someone who needs to track your time. This requires Stripe as a gateway. It allows you to create custom invoices, manage projects and produce proposals quickly and efficiently. And the best part? It’s $10 a month. This is a tool that can grow with your business and stay on as you add more robust tools. Click here to learn more about Harvest.
Yes, PayPal is a payment gateway but it also allows you to create PayPal buttons to embed on any website that takes HTML or you can email the button to clients and customers. One thing to note is that you do need to create a PayPal business profile to access the buttons. It will create recurring payments as well and help you sort out shipping rates if you’ve got a physical product.
Which payment management system do you use in your business? How do you stay on top of these tools while running your business?
Exchanging time for dollars has a limit. You can only work so many hours in the day and there is a max to the amount of money you can make in that time. The best way to make more money without exchanging more time? Passive income opportunities.
Passive Income means income that you earn without directly exchanging time for said income. It can be affiliate income, investment income or influencer income.
Anyone can be an affiliate. In fact, if you think about it, you’re probably an affiliate already. Ever refer a friend to an app, program or service? That’s an affiliate. You are working as an affiliate to spread the word about a company’s offering and you’re getting paid for it. Most often, in the traditional “refer a friend” scenarios, you’re getting paid in free classes, free subscriptions or credits toward a freebie.
But what if that was actual payment?
Many software companies offer affiliates a percentage of sales earned in exchange for spreading the word. This is something that online entrepreneurs also do. To begin as an affiliate, you need to determine what value you bring to the company you’ll be working with.
How big is your network?
How interested is your audience/community in the item you’re going to be selling?
Once you determine if this is something that you can actually convert (ex: sell to your audience), then you can approach individuals and work out the specifics.
Invest in a product, content series or video series for a chance to earn percentages back when the product becomes successful.
This is much more risky than traditional affiliate income opportunities but it could also have a larger pay off.
As a digital influencer, you are betting on the response of your community. When you approach a brand, you share your overall reach and, if the brand is smart, they’ll ask for stats on conversions for other collaborations. Why? Because you could have a very high number of disengaged and disinterested followers — which is not a good investment for the brand. However if you, like the Kardashians, have a large group of lively and engaged fans, this could be a very lucrative way to make money.
Influencers also get paid in product sometimes, so if that’s your thing, it could be a positive exchange.
How do you create more wealth without exchanging more hours? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
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