Congratulations on starting your side hustle!
Now comes what some might say is the most challenging the part of the process — figuring out how to market your side hustle.
Thankfully, the internet has opened the doors for endless opportunities, so there’s no shortage of places to get your name out there. That being said, it’s important to market your side hustle in places that are relevant and worth your time (which, a lot of places won’t be).
By the end of this post, you’ll walk away with several options for how to market your side hustle so that you can start getting clients or customers!
Let’s get to it.
This post contains affiliate links, which means that I will receive a percentage of any purchase made from these links, at absolutely no cost to you! I only promote what I personally vouch for. Thank you for the support!
How to Market Your Side Hustle
Create a Website
Having an online presence is one of the best ways to showcase your services and/or products so that people can find you.
Now, if you’re going to market your side hustle this way, you’ll want to take some time to learn a few things, including:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Basic HTML
- Content creation
You don’t need to have a site with a ton of blog posts or content on it, but you should have at least the following:
- Contact form
- Services/Products offered
- Portfolio of examples or an online storefront where people can buy your products
- About us page (so that people can learn more about you and your mission)
From there, you can set up WordPress.org and activate a theme you like (or purchase one off of Etsy or another site) and then launch!
Social Media Marketing
While not every social media site is the ideal place to market your side hustle, a few of the more popular ones are:
I have an entire post on how to make money on Reddit, so be sure to check that out!
As for the others, you’ll want to start by putting your side hustle in your profile bio so that people know you have a service or product to offer.
From there, you’ll want to start asking if your friends and family would be willing to help market your side hustle so that it reaches a larger audience.
Additionally, you should start your own posting and outreach on these channels as well.
I recommend using relevant hashtags, chatting with people who could be your potential customers or clients, and posting regularly.
Share your portfolio, talk about things that are trending in your side hustle market, and don’t be afraid to connect with people you might not know.
Some social media sites, like Facebook, also have groups available for people to join. Depending on the group rules, you may be able to directly market your side hustle with other members!
Going along with creating a website and sharing on social media, you could also run some paid digital advertising campaigns to market your side hustle.
Google Search ads are great if you are trying to capture anyone who is searching for your specific service or product.
When setting up these ads, make sure they are correctly optimized and have targeted keywords. I highly recommend going through this Google checklist before you launch any ads to make sure you’ve covered all your bases.
You could also run ads on social media channels, or even boost posts that you’ve already created. Again, take some time to learn the ropes of these platforms and how best to optimize the ads to reach your target audience. It will save you a lot of money in the end!
Freelance Job Sites
There are tons of freelance job sites where you can offer your services, including:
Keep in mind that setting up a profile and marketing your side hustle on these sites doesn’t guarantee that you’ll gain any customers. You’ll need to do some groundwork to submit proposals and land your initial jobs.
From there, you may start to get a flow of repeat customers who want to continue doing business with you, which is the ideal! But yes, it will take some work to reach that point, so don’t just throw up your profile and call it a day — make sure you take the time to properly market yourself and your side hustle at the beginning.
Thanks to the web, it’s a lot easier (and faster) to find your potential clients’ contact information, especially if your side hustle focuses on helping other businesses.
Take freelance writing for instance. You could browse the web of local businesses and find some who would greatly benefit from having their website copy revamped.
The writer could then create a simple cold pitch email and send it to the email address they found on the contact page.
Now, you aren’t going to hear a “yes” from everyone you reach out to. In fact, you may not get a ton of replies at all.
Not everyone is going to be a “yes”, but eventually you’ll get your foot in the door and start getting a feel for what outreach style works best for you.
Here are a few of my top outreach tips to get you started:
- Always personalize — you should never send the same email to different people
- Be conversational
- Focus on what’s in it for them
- Provide samples of your work
- Include testimonials (if available)
If you’re in the business of selling products and are trying to get a face-to-face meeting with someone, a phone call might be the best option for marketing your side hustle.
Emails are really easy to ignore, but when you have someone on the phone, you have the opportunity to truly sell your pitch and explain why you deserve their time.
I know what you’re thinking — don’t people hate cold callers?
Well, I think as individuals we all hate spam callers, but if you have a product or service that could greatly benefit a business, then that phone call could be your ticket in the door.
The key is to not be overly pushy. Let your product or service do the talking and see if there’s an opportunity to work together. And if you get a hard no, take the feedback and move on.
Attend Networking Events
With in-person events making a comeback, consider attending a local professionals or small business networking event.
You never know who is going to show up at these, so be prepared by having business cards available so that any potential clients or customers can follow up with you after the event.
And even if you don’t find a paying client, networking is still a great way to market your side hustle because it exposes your services or product to a wider audience.
After the event, don’t be afraid to connect with your new contacts on LinkedIn! By doing this, you can bring them into your social media marketing efforts, which keeps your side hustle fresh in their mind.
Have Your Current or Past Clients/Customers Share Testimonials
Are you someone who looks at product reviews before deciding which one to purchase?
It’s a similar concept here!
By having current or past clients/customers share testimonials about your product or services, you’ll build a reputation that speaks for itself.
You can ask that they share these testimonials on social media (LinkedIn allows people to leave recommendations), and you can also ask them if they’d be comfortable with you posting them on your website or other marketing materials.
You’re essentially building a library of reviews to market your side hustle so that you aren’t the only one talking about it.
Bonus points if you can provide the example work associated with the testimonial you received so that potential clients/customers can put the two together!
Do you feel more confident about how to market your side hustle?
I hope so!