The BIG List of Brands Looking for Influencers

Many teens and young adults dream of becoming influencers these days and for good reason.

Influencer money is real.

On top of the freebies and high-paying deals that brand ambassadors receive, they also have fame beyond their wildest dreams and a “job” that never feels like they’re actually working.

Of course, before you get to the top of the chain, there’s a lot of work involved. From building up a sizable following, to learning everything you can about social media and online marketing, becoming an influencer is a business through and through.

If you or anyone you know is trying to get serious with influence marketing, make sure to bookmark this post. I’ve compiled a list of influencer platforms you can use to extend your reach and an up-to-date list of brands currently looking for their ambassadors.

HUGE List of Brands Currently Looking for Ambassadors

If you want to make money as an influencer, you have several routes:

Join an Influencer Marketing Agency

Just like talent agencies in Hollywood, influencer marketing agencies were built to help influencers find business deals, manage their influencer business, and do promotions for you.

Most of the time, these agencies have a high requirement (25k followers, 2+ years of active online presence, etc.).

Make a Profile on various Influencer Marketplaces

Influencer marketplaces is usually just a software that collects a list of influencers from various social media.

It is business-centric, since it usually vets influencers, filter them by demographics and provide a comprehensive matching feature for brands looking for ambassadors.

The problem with influencer marketplaces is that you usually don’t have control on which brands contact you for deals. The only upside is being listed on marketplaces gives you an extra boost of exposure.

Join Influencer Marketing Platforms

As you can see from the platform choices above, there are opportunities everywhere. However, since you are competing with hundreds or thousands of other influencers looking for deals, sponsorship and brands as well, the process can be challenging. This is especially true if you’re just starting out.

Look for Brands Yourself

If you’re not at the level required to join an influencer marketing agency and your profile at the influencer marketplace isn’t moving, you have another option.

You might want to try to do-it-yourself and try your chances with the following brands that are currently looking for ambassadors.

50 Brands Looking for Influencers

*** Make sure to bookmark this post to check new ones as I update it.

Clothing & Apparel Brands

  • Breezy Swimwear – Like affiliates, ambassadors earn 15% commission for any referrals to the store that end up as sale. Brand ambassadors are given their own code to share to their followers. They also get discounts and freebies as part of the deal.
  • Calamity Jane’s Apparel – Get a box of goodies once you’re chosen, followed by a monthly t-shirt freebie as long as you promote the brand with your family and friends.
  • Dia&Co – Dia & Co is looking for plus-sized Dia brand ambassador who live and breathe fashion. Get to earn real cash, freebies and access to new products.
  • Dollschino – This London-based clothing store is always looking for two kinds of help: junior influencers with less than 10k followers and brand ambassadors with over 10k followers. If you’d like to work with Dollschino, learn more about these programs here.
  • Enjoy Leggings – Get free leggings and first dibs on new products as a brand ambassador.
  • Evy’s Tree – This company may have begun as a company known for hoodies, but it has now expanded to anything dainty women’s wear. As ambassador, you receive quarterly gift boxes and affiliate commissions to sales you’ve referred.
  • FINDRA – This company is looking for outdoorsy ambassadors willing to showcase their passion for bikes, skis, snowboards, canoes and overall travelers to help promote their brand.
  • Hilda & Hanel Clothing Co. – Got a huge following on Instagram and want to receive and promote clothes? If you’re chosen, you’ll be working as the company’s ambassador for 3 months.
  • Izzy & Liv – Celebrate black culture with likeminded ambassadors and get a free #Brownsugarbox free. Izzy and Liv is looking for adult and kid ambassadors.
  • Leela and Lavender – This multi-brand store is always looking for ambassadors to expand the reach of the company. Fill-out this form to learn about the perks you get when you’re chosen as Leela & Lavender ambassador.
  • Lemon – For comfy lounge wear, legwear and everything cozy and luxurious, Lemon is famous for their cold-weather clothes. Fill out the form to apply as an ambassador and get a chance to receive free clothes.
  • NUYU – This company is specifically looking for college students, who would like to earn free clothes and extra cash just by promoting their products on Instagram.
  • Sand Cloud – This is both a cause (they help preserve marine life) and a complete line-up of clothes, accessories and other sustainable products.
  • She Inspired Clothing – Accepts influencer from any platform (whether you’re a blogger, TikToker, YouTuber, Instagrammer or so on). There is quite a list of requirements, but the benefits make up for it: there’s cash, freebies, and networking opportunities.
  • Sunny Co Clothing – Calling all beachlovers with an active Instagram following. This company gives away a pair of sunglasses or swimsuit to their ambassadors.
  • The Copper Closet – Different levels of perks and required posts are available for the Copper Closet’s brand ambassadors.
  • The Jacket Maker – Makers of luxurious jackets for men and women, this company is looking for ambassadors to promote the brand. In return, ambassadors get to earn 20% commissions for referred sales, 50% off on purchased items, and lifetime discount for you and your friends.
  • The Rustic Rack Boutique – For parents with influencer kids ages 0-3 months to preteen (up to size 14), get free clothes, discounts, and other perks if your kid is chosen to be a brand ambassador.

Sports and Active Wear Brands

  • Discount Dance – As social media ambassador of Discount Dance, you’ll receive the latest dancewear fashions, and in return, you show off your new clothes via your social media channels.
  • Kona Surf Co. – As an ambassador for this surf company, you get to receive free swag and be included in insider contests and giveaways.
  • Trek Light Gear – Become one of the company’s “badassador” and get discounts for the hammocks, apparel, and other outdoorsy lifestyle gear.
  • Born Tough – Makers of cool-looking duffle bags, gym bags, gym accessories, and workout clothes, this company is always looking for brand ambassadors who can promote the company and get paid for 15% commissions in return.

Jewelry and Accessories Brands

  • Blue Planet EyewearAside from  getting free and discounted eyewear, you can also earn commissions from promoting the brand any way possible.
  • LÍLLÉbaby If you have a sizable following on Instagram or other social media and you’re a family with a baby, this brand is a perfect match for you.
  • Mulu Jewelry – Those who have significant followers on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or YouTube could be chosen as Mulu’s ambassador and earn in-store credit to purchase jewelry from the store.
  • Pura Vida BraceletsThis company is always looking for US-based influencers who could  post at least twice a week. Pays thru PayPal.
  • S-Force Watches – This company is looking for a specific brand ambassador. Fitness-loving, power bodybuilders who have the same love for quality watches. Do you fit the bill? Apply here.
  • Twelve Little – If you’re a lover of gorgeous bags (backpacks, bottle bags, diaper bags, lunch bags, etc.), becoming a brand ambassador for Twelve Little makes sense. You’ll get discounts of up to 50% for you and your followers.

Skin Care, Cosmetics, and Health Care Brands

  • Amire – As a brand ambassador for Amire, get free cosmetic products shipped to you once or twice a month free. In return, you have to post about the brand each week and get a chance to earn more cash.
  • CLN & DRTY – Makers of aromatherapy, oils and other organic skincare products.
  • Foxx and Luna – This small company creates hand-made, body and spa GMO-free products using cruelty-free ingredients. They also sell a wide range of products from tarots to wind chimes, candles, crystals, gemstones, herbs, and so much more.
  • HD Beauty Skincare Boutique – Ambassadors earn commissions, receive discounts and get to try out new products.
  • Lash Factory – Obsessed with having perfect lashes? This company is a producer of quality mascara, brow/lash growth serum and other similar products.
  • Move Makeup – From the creators of the famous Move Makeup kits, concealers, blush, eyeshadow, and more, this opportunity is limited to the first 100 applications each month. The form may be closed temporarily, but opens at the start of the next month.
  • One CBD – If you are a living proof of the benefits of CBD, One CBD is looking for you to become a brand ambassador, share your story, and get a chance to earn through commissions and get significant discounts on One CBD products.
  • Orglamix – This company gives away free products, discounts, and first dibs to their new oils, skincare, makeup products.
  • PMD Beauty – Influencers both men and women are welcome to send a form to collaborate, as long as you have something to offer. Make sure to indicate your social media platforms so the company could verify your clout.
  • The Better Skin Co. – The cosmetics and skincare company is accepting influencers who have at least 5,000 followers with 200 likes on each of the most recent 10 photos.
  • Winky Lux – If you’re a fan of this small cosmetics and beauty company, check out their ambassador program.

Food and Drink Brands

  • Celsius – This company is looking for ambassadors who already love the Celsius health drinks. To apply, fill out the form and share you YouTube, Instagram, or TikTok links.
  • J-Gen – For those who love health drinks, J-Gen’s antioxidant drinks (in powder and ready-to-drink bottles) could be your next favorite drink. And if you become the brand’s ambassador, you can enjoy free products and 20% commissions from referred sales.
  • Kung Fu Tea – If you are in love with bubble tea, there’s no better way to get discounts and freebies than to become a brand ambassador for Kung Fu Tea.
  • Once Upon a Farm – Co-created by Jennifer Garner, Once Upon a Farm is a company that provides fresh and organic food for kids. It is looking for farm mamas or dadas who are based in the US and can provide quality content on Instagram each month.

Tech Brands

  • Zagg.com – This site is home to famous phone accessory brands like Invisible Shield and Mophie, so if you’re a fan and have an active social media life, then fill out this form.

Non-Profit Brands

  • Happy Earth – Get involved in protecting the earth as an ambassador for Happy Earth apparel and you receive discounts and gain plenty of friends who participate in tree planting or trash-pickup activities.
  • The Great North – Help this company with their environmental efforts by promoting the brand on Instagram. Every time someone buys swimwear, a shirt, or other lifestyle apparel, 10% goes into planting trees, removing garbage from oceans, and contributing to sustainable environment.

Everything Else

  • The Honest Company – Co-founded by actress Jessica Alba, this company has been producing plenty of good-quality, non-toxic household products. Pay here is legit – ambassadors earn $15/hour instead of commissions.
  • Junobie – This company produces eco-friendly household products designed for the breastfeeding mom. If you have a sizable following on social media and want to share your love of the brand while getting some perks, fill out the form here.
  • RimBlades USA – RimBlades USA has provided consumers with a patented wheel protection accessory that’s easy to install and looks great. If you’re a fan, this could be your chance to get free products and earn commissions through this ambassador program.
  • Singer – Are you passionate about sewing and love the SINGER brand? The company is continuously looking for people to share the joy of sewing.

12 Influencer Platforms to Help You Find Sponsorship & Deals

If you’re trying to be proactive and wanted to go where businesses find influencers, I have important news for you:

  • The platforms aimed at businesses in search of influencers to team up with are unfortunately, only for businesses. For example, Traackr, was designed specifically to discover and manage influencers, as well as track the progress of campaigns.
  • Most of the time, there is no way to sign-up as an influencer on these sites or apps. It’s because the business-geared platforms use robots and algorithms to find potential brand ambassadors based on various factors, such as number and age of followers, niche, location, level of activity, and so on.

If you do find a platform that allows influencers to join and make a profile, expect these platforms to be more biased to businesses (or lack features beneficial to your influencer life). This is because the businesses are the ones paying for access to this data.

Check some of them out here:

1. Tap Influence

Create an account. Complete your profile. Then when a marketer is interested in collaborating with you, you’ll receive an invitation to bid on an opportunity.

The invitation isn’t a guarantee you’ll be chosen.

  • PROS: Marketers can see your profile and if your business matches the brand’s needs, your name will be included in the “options”
  • CONS: You are not given a chance to message marketers directly. If you are chosen, communication and payments go through TapInfluence.

2. FameBit.com

Before YouTube acquired the branded content marketplace FameBit.com, this site let creators find sponsorship, submit proposals to brands, and get paid all in one platform. But starting on July 31, this self-service feature will no longer be available.

  • PROS: The full service program still helps creators by matching them with brands. Best for YouTubers.
  • CONS: You don’t have the freedom you enjoyed with self-service.

3. Heepsy.com

Heepsy is mostly for businesses and marketers looking for influencers. On their side, brands can filter influencers based on past deals, audience demographics, and other useful filters. As an influencer, you could also find and contact other influencers near you or within your niche if you’re feeling a bit lost and need advice with pricing deals, finding brands, or even setting up a collaboration.

  • PROS: The influencer-friendly feature is pretty useful. Try out the free trial before paying though.
  • CONS: Not enough features available for influencers. This is mostly a business-aimed platform.

4. Aspire IQ (formerly Revfluence)

Known formerly as Revfluence, Aspire IQ is a self-service solution for brands and marketers looking for influencers to work with. It offers plenty of analytical data about influencers and provide brands with a platform to collaborate, manage and assist in tracking campaigns. If you’re an influencer, you just need to join and Aspire IQ would match you with brands and handle payments for you as well.

  • PROS: Big companies like Quest Nutrition and Birchbox are some examples of the brands they work with. Sends payment through PayPal.
  • CONS: Influencers cannot send brands proposals

5. FOHR.co

FOHR has a goldmine of resources for influencers starting out in this business. Make sure to follow the blog and join their email list. It’s free to join as influencers, and the company seems to be serious at helping both sides make the collaborations into a win-win scenario. All influencers who sign-up to FOHR gets their own Instagram Follower Health Score, which is a pretty cool ‘scoring’ feature.

  • PROS: Awesome choice for fashion bloggers and influencers
  • CONS: Not for beginners with little to no clout on Instagram

6. Influential

Influential helps you connect with businesses across different social media platforms. Although Influential is like other companies that use a software for matching influencers with brands, but this is quite exciting because it is powered by Watson, IBM’s artificial intelligence (AI) software.

  • PROS: AI software that knows your profile and followers down to the T
  • CONS: No way to join as influencers

7. Linqia

This influencer marketing platform is also AI-driven and focuses more on the brands. Features include a social content lab, where brands can test and analyze various influencers for any particular campaign. The requirements for influencers are pretty easy: at least 2 social accounts, over 2500 followers a month, and at least 1 post monthly.

  • PROS: Pays in about 10 days, unlike the standard 30-day
  • CONS: Canada and US-based influencers only.

8. Mavrck

The Mavrck platform is pretty unique. In most cases, the software collects a list of influencers, weigh the level of clout each one has, verify the followers and information, then match these verified influencers with brands. With Mavrck, a brand’s real customers are invited to become brand ambassadors.

  • PROS: Big-time brands like Universal Studios, New Balance, Proctor & Gamble, Gillette, Dunkin’ Donuts, Sears, and JetBlue.
  • CONS: Influencers have to trust the system and wish that they get picked to become ambassadors.

9. Tidal Labs

Tidal Labs is a full-service influence platform. Through its AI, Tidal finds and groups influencers into certain categories. Brands can create two kinds of campaigns: a public one that any influencer can apply to, and a private one that is only offered to certain influencers. 

  • PROS: Tidal Labs claim of giving beginners a fair shot as experienced influencers
  • CONS: More private campaigns than public campaigns available

10. SocialBook

Dubbed as the world’s best real-time YouTube/Instagram influencer analytical, marketing and advertising machine learning engine, SocialBook was designed to help both influencers and brands arrive at a win-win situation.

  • PROS: Good set of features for influencers: from the ability to check other influencers’ reports to getting brand offers from within the platform.
  • CONS: Free plan is good, but lacks the juicy features available with the paid plans ($14 to $34/month).

11. BrandSnob

This platform is a self-service influencer marketplace, where brands post their campaign and wait for offers from influencers. The brand chooses the influencer to promote their product/service. 

  • PROS: Access to this platform is totally free for influencers
  • CONS: The competition is high and you are not given a chance to send proposals to any brand you like

12. Webfluential 

Webfluential really means what its name suggest – this platform helps influencers of YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and even bloggers using the WordPress platform. It provides beginner to experienced influencers with all the right tools to be able to deal with even the biggest companies like Coca-Cola, P& G, Nokia, KFC, Barclays, ABSOLUT, and more.

  • PROS: It is made with influencers in mind
  • CONS: Can’t find anything wrong with this platform.

30 Influencer Tools You Need to Level Up Your Campaigns

In the past, you had to access all your social media accounts manually to post something in them. Many influencers in the earlier days had to do it old school and used their gut when deciding on things.

Now with the help of influencer platforms, these tools make it easy to post in all accounts in one go, schedule posts, monitor the success or failure of a particular campaign, be on top of various analytics (number of followers per social media, number of people who read a particular post, and so on).

You don’t have to use ALL of them, but choosing the best one of these tools is essential to leveling up from just a “famous online person” to an actual online entrepreneur. Ready? Here are the available platforms:

CONTENT CREATION TOOLS

Content refers to anything expressed through a particular medium. This could be anything, from videos for YouTube, infographics for your Pinterest, a tutorial for your blog, or even just a picture for your Instagram.  The following tools will make your lives as influencers easier (perfect for those on a budget and working on their own):

1. Inshot

This video editor app (available in both Android and iOS) allows you to crop in front, at the middle, or end of a video, add effects or voice-overs, add music and text, or adjust speed. Designed for Instagram Stories, but can still be used on other social media.

2. Canva

Ever wanted to make lovely graphics for your pages, but have zero Photoshop skills? Canva is going to be a life-changer for you. Completely free forever, join Canva and start creating.

3. Camtasia

For YouTubers (and other video content creators) who are in need of a capable screen recorder and video editor, TechSmith made Camtasia especially for you. The upside is that there’s free trial, but not everyone can afford it since you’ll need to pay $160 to $250 once the trial is over.

4. OBS (Open Broadcasting Software)

If Camtasia is too expensive, OBS is your solution. This free and open source software is the tool many YouTubers and Twitchers use for video recording and live streaming.

5. Adobe Lightroom app

There are tons of photo editing programs out there being marketed for influencers, but if you need just one, the Lightroom app should be your first choice. And because Lightroom is a pretty popular Adobe product, you can buy presets from hundreds of Etsy creators and give your photos a uniform “look.” Downside is you’ll be paying around $10 a month for desktop and mobile access.

6. Subtitle Workshop

Make adding subtitles to your videos quick and easy. Perfect if you have an accent, speak quickly, or just want additional resources for your followers. It’s free and supports various formats.

7. Ginger

Not the best writer in the world? Don’t worry. There are apps like Ginger to help check your spelling, grammar and punctuation. Keep your content clean without extra effort. It’s free for mobile and desktop.

8. IFTTT (“if this, then that”)

This is aimed for influencers with advanced computer knowledge. With this free tool, you can create any kind of “recipe” or task that you need.  For example: “If you post a new Facebook post,  then it should be shared on Instagram as well.”

9. Tailwind

Designed specifically for creating Pinterest and Instagram content, Tailwind lets you upload posts in bulk, schedule posts and pin to multiple boards in one. There’s free trial, but goes for $9.99 per account per month once it ends.

10. MeetEdgar

For influencers with a blog, this tool lets you recycle your old posts and re-post them in various social media throughout the year. It even organizes which content to use from your given categories.

SEO TOOLS

If you know about #hashtags, you have a slight idea of Search Engine Optimization.

Simply put, any SEO effort you bring to the table is aimed at helping robots (of Google, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, or other platforms) find your content by guiding them with keywords (like hashtags).

SEO may sound complicated, but most influencers have been doing it without really diving deep into the world of SEO. With the following tools, your SEO efforts would be much more easier:

11. TubeBuddy

For YouTubers, this free extension tool is a must if you wish to expand your reach legally and without spending in advertising. It will make it easy for you to optimize your video and channel tags, descriptions, titles, and even thumbnails. There’s free and paid ($9 to $42/month) versions of this tool.

12. Keyhole

This hashtag tracker is very useful for social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter. It helps influencers track their campaigns based on how many people shared their post that included those specific hashtags.

13. KeywordTool.io

The rules of keyword research for social media is different for blogs. Every platform has its own rules and algorithms, but you need to start somewhere. Finding keywords for your post could be the first step to a SEO-optimized influencer business.

14. Linktree

Instagram is notorious for giving users only one chance to show off a website, blog, or any other link…and that’s the BIO link. This tool helps you take advantage of that one link by sending anyone who clicks it to multiple possible pathways (that you will set). You can use this free, or pay $6/month for extra features.

15. Audiense

This lead generation tool is for influencers who want to boost the number of their audience, and understand their existing followers better. Ideal for beginners, it gives you a ton of tracking data, reports and “actionable” recommendations.

ORGANIZATION TOOLS

Do you feel like you’re handeling more social media platforms (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and the next big thing), juggling between tasks, and trying to cope with other influencer activities? If so, you might need some organizing in your influencer business.

16. Asana

This project management software helps you keep track of everything – posts, scheduled posts, campaigns, and other tasks. You wouldn’t get overwhelmed too much when everything is in calendar form. It supports almost all social media, so if you’re focusing on two or more platforms, then this could really help organize your work.

17. OnlyPULT

Made for power Instagrammers, this post scheduling tool automatically plans your photos, videos and other posts for publication. It helps you choose the perfect time to post (based on your followers’ most-active hours) and since you can pre-set everything, you even don’t have to be online to post anything. Your hashtags are stored for future use. This is a paid tool, starting at $10.50/month.

18. Awario

Awario is a comprehensive social listening tool that allows you to keep up-to-date with who’s who of your niche (for possible collaborations). The downside of this tool is that it was made for brands to find influencers, so expect most features geared toward businesses.

19. SquareLovin

This visual analytics tool is pretty comprehensive, letting you see clicks to your posts, analyze conversions, and even let you manage Instagram from the platform. If you’re serious about monetizing your influencer status or improve your followers’ engagement, make sure to check it out.

20. Social Blade

Social Blade is a website that tracks your own social media statistics and analytics, as well as your competititors. Social Blade most notably tracks the YouTube platform, but also has analytical information regarding Twitch, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Mixer, Dailymotion, DLive, and TikTok.

SOCIAL MEDIA TOOLS

Let’s face it. There are a ton of social media platforms today. While some influencers began their career in just one (like YouTube, Instagram, Vine, Snapchat, etc.), expanding to other platforms like Facebook, Tik-Tok, Pinterest, and more could mean a double in revenue or a boost in followers.

For most beginner influencers who do not have their own team to handle some of these tasks, these social media tools are enough to help you handle your online presence.

21. Socialbakers

This tool organizes your followers’ data, which you could use for monetizing campaigns and improving content. If you’ve been paying for advertising, this tool helps you gear into important things like audience retention.

22. SocialFlow

SocialFlow gives  you control on scheduling posts, but it chooses the right time to publish this post based on the activity level and engagement of your followers. This tool then collects real-time data and removes the need to “trust your gut” when it comes to the best time of day to publish posts.

23. Followerwonk

This one is exclusive to Twitter, but one that is very useful for analyzing your competition, knowing the demographics of your followers, and optimizing your Twitter activities based on real data collected.

24. TokUpgrade

TokUpgrade is one of the earliest tools designed for TikTokers. It helps TikTok-based influencers from getting more “real, targeted followers” safely, securely and legally. This is a paid service and since these guys really know what they’re doing, you can guarantee to receive geniune TikTok fan base growth.

25. OptinMonster

If you’re looking to get a significant amount of new leads, OptinMonster can help you in creating pop-ups, landing pages and other lead-capturing methods without tech knowledge or graphic design skills. It offer drag-and-drop templates you can use quickly.

OTHER TOOLS

These BONUS tools can be a game-changer for you, depending on where you are at your influencer journey.

26. Woobox

What better way to improve your follower engagement than to have a contest, giveaway or competition? Not sure how you could pull one off? Woobox can take care of everything you need to create giveaways, custom forms, hashtag contests, coupons, polls, quizzes, photo contests.

27. Bitly

Bit.ly shortens any URL you have, so if you’re on Twitter (known for its infamous limited space), you’ll be saving more space for your messages. On top of this, all links you shortened using Bitly will be added to your analytics chart, which makes it easy to track campaigns based on the URL you send out to the world.

28. Gleam Competitions

Gleam Competitions works similar to Woobox. It verifies entries of anyone who joins your contest or giveaway, making it totally manageable to run one every week or month.

29. NapoleonCat

This all-in-one social media management and analytics tool also automates customer service and provides you a comprehensive dashboard for all your campaigns. It supports most popular social media like YouTube and Instagram.

30. The FTW Transcriber 

For YouTubers and Twitchers, a good transcriptionist is important. Anything you put out as video can be transcribed and turned into a text-based content (which you can publish as blog post, or Facebook post). It’s such a good way to repurpose content at a low price (average fee is $1 per minute transcribed).

Get Yourself a PO Box, too!

With all the tools you might have on your list, this old school “tool” is often forgotten. But if you’re like most influencers who are getting famous by the day, you know that there are plenty of freebies, deals and other stuff brands (or even fans) send your way.

To keep some semblance of privacy, a PO Box is definitely a must-have for receiving snail mail and packages. The amount may vary by city, but you’d usually have to should $100/year for your own PO Box.

The Bottom Line

If you’re interested in starting with just one social media platform, these following resources could be useful to you:

If everything you just read about the business of becoming an influencer is new to you, but you feel that this career path is speaking to you, make sure to read this guide on how to become a brand ambassador.

How To Start A Podcast & Earn Serious Cash

You’ve probably subscribed to a few podcasts, or at least listened to a few.

If so, you’re far from alone.

Over 90 million Americans listen to a podcast once a month, and the numbers are projected to grow each year.

As the audience grows, and so does the number of podcasts available.

Should you add to these podcasts and publish your own?

In today’s blog post, you’ll learn all the reasons why starting a podcast is good for your business and your brand. You’ll also get a step-by-step guide on how to start a podcast.

Why Start A Podcast?

You might be wondering if starting a podcast is even worth it, especially if you have a small online business with not a lot of capital or cash on hand.

But these are some of the reasons why starting a podcast for your business is a good idea.

Podcasting can increase your traffic.

Podcasting gives you the opportunity to reach out to new audiences who might not be fond of reading blog posts or watching videos.

When listeners subscribe to your podcast, they may recommend your podcast to other listeners who may be interested in what you have to offer.

These are new listeners that can potentially become new customers of your business.

Podcasting strengthens your relationship with your existing audience.

Widening your reach is important, but keeping your customers and your existing audience is just as, if not more, important.

A monthly or weekly episode of your podcast keeps your subscribers updated and invested in your content and your business.

Podcasting is a great alternative to video marketing.

In terms of digital marketing, video marketing is superior. Videos are indeed the content of the future.

However, not everyone is comfortable being on camera, or have the skills or resources to create high-quality videos.

In this case, something is better than nothing; podcasts are better than having no digital marketing strategy.

Podcasting is simple to start.

You can order the equipment today, get them tomorrow, download the software, and you can start right away.

Podcasting is popular.

Podcasts are a welcome alternative to written and video content, mainly because listeners can engage with audio content while multitasking.

When reading articles or watching videos, you have to set aside time and attention to be involved in the content.

Podcasting gives you a chance to add to your revenue stream.

The main purpose of podcasting for your business is to promote your own products and services.

But as we’ve tackled in another article here, podcasting can earn you some cash by itself.

You can earn some extra income from your podcast through affiliate marketing with products and services related to your business.

As your podcast becomes more popular, you can also get sponsorship deals.

How To Start A Podcast

Now that you’re (hopefully) convinced that podcasting is beneficial, let’s go over a general overview of what a podcast involves, as well as the steps on how to start a podcast.

Generally, a podcast involves these three main stages:

  • Record episodes using your equipment and your computer.
  • Upload episodes to a podcasting host.
  • Promote podcast episodes.

Within these three stages are several steps to complete and factors to consider, so let’s dive in.

Step 1. Validate your podcast idea.

Since you already have a business that has a niche, you have a great deal of your work already done.

Even though you have a niche, consider what your target audience is looking for in a podcast.

Podcast ideas

Do they want expert advice? Do they want reviews about products or services in your niche? Or do they simply want to be entertained?

And you don’t want to go through producing an entire podcast only to find out that no one cares.

You can validate your idea by doing a Google search for podcasts using keywords related to your niche.

Doing this gives you an idea of what podcasts are already out there, which ones are successful, which ones are less successful, and what kind of podcast your audience needs that they don’t seem to be getting currently.

Think about the format of your podcast. Would you prefer to do solo podcasts, interviews, case studies, or do it with a co-host?

Step 2. Think of a podcast name, cover art, podcast description, and theme music.

These seem like superficial things to worry about, but these are the first few things that audiences will see and hear.

If your cover art looks low-quality, and your title isn’t interesting, listeners who’re scrolling through a podcast directory will just skip over yours.

When choosing a title, write down some titles with your target keywords and include descriptive words that give listeners an idea of what they can expect from you and your podcast.

Another aspect you’ll need to carefully select is your podcast’s cover art. Unless you’re an experienced graphic designer, it’s more advisable to commission one than to try to do it yourself.

Good cover art is easy to read, has the name of your podcast, contains images related to your topic, and uses an aesthetically pleasing color combination.

Make sure as well that it conforms to requirements of the podcast directories where you plan to submit your podcast.

You’ll also have to submit a podcast description, which is a short summary of what your podcast is all about and why people should listen to it.

Make sure you include relevant keywords in your podcast description and write something that’ll pique listeners’ interest.

Your intro and outro songs also matter. Catchy music does wonders for listeners’ attention spans.

If you’re working on a budget, you can search for free music on Free Music Archive, but if you have a few dollars to spare, you can try Audio Jungle or Stock Music Site.

When you go through this step, remember that starting a podcast for your business is going to be pointless unless someone listens to it, and a lot of times, you only get one chance to give a first impression and convince your audience to listen to your podcast.

Step 3. Gather your equipment.

Professional equipment can cost a pretty penny; you can expect to spring around $1,000 or more.

If you’re only starting out, it’s better to keep everything simple. You can get a decent set up for less than $300 if you choose right, and you can upgrade to more high-end equipment once you’re earning more.

Here are the essential types of equipment you’ll need to start a podcast and what to look for in each one.

Microphone

You can’t get away with using your laptop microphone or the built-in microphone from your Bluetooth headset.

A quality microphone decreases background noise and picks up the most important sound in a microphone: your voice.

Analog microphones are generally acknowledged to be the best type of microphone you can use, but these can cost you hundreds of dollars.

Plus, you’ll need an audio interface to digitize the sound for your computer, which is an extra cost.

For a balance between quality and cost, look for a mid-range USB microphone. It plugs directly to your computer and sound quality is acceptable for podcasting.

Accessories that you can use to reduce popping sounds (such as those that are made when making P, B, T, J, C, or K sounds) include foam windshields that you can fit over the microphone or a mesh pop shield to place between your mouth and the microphone.

Headphones

In theory, you can use earphones when working on your episodes.

But headphones are recommended because most of them are noise-canceling, allowing you to better hear yourself and your interviewee if you have one.

Podcast Headphones

It’s also recommended to choose headphones that are closed-back and snug-fitting but comfortable such that you can wear them for hours.

Step 4. Download the necessary software.

You’ll need software for recording your podcast and for editing the audio files. Some software can be used as both recording and editing software, but you can also use separate software for recording and editing.

The most popular software options include Audacity (free) and GarageBand (free, Mac only).

Step 5. Select a podcast hosting provider.

A website hosting provider hosts your website, while podcast hosting providers hosts your podcast.

The difference is that podcast hosting providers use media servers; that is, they’re specifically designed to store large media files and support the high bandwidth needed to stream episodes or download them to their devices.

Consider the following factors:

  • Pricing. How much can you afford to spend, and is it worth it for what you’re getting?
  • User-friendliness. Some hosting providers are easier to work with than others. It’s not worth anything if you can’t use the interface.
  • Embeddable players. You might want to embed episodes of your podcasts in your blog or website.

The most popular ones are SoundCloud, Podbean, and Libsyn.

Step 6. Plan your podcast episodes.

At this point, decide how long each of your episodes should be.

A podcast episode usually ranges from 30 minutes to an hour, but you should plan this according to your planned topics and how long you can realistically talk about them.

Unless you’re an experienced speaker who knows how to wing it without veering off-topic and staying within your time limit, planning your episodes is the smart thing to do.

But writing a script and just reading it will make you come off sounding like a robot to your listeners. Not to mention it takes hours writing a script for a single half-hour episode.

You want your listeners to feel less like you’re giving a sermon and more like you’re actually having a conversation with them, even though it’s one-sided.

For this, you’ll want to write down a general topic, then bullet points of subtopics. Also indicate how many minutes you want to allot per bullet point.

Take the time to provide an opening and closing spiel for your episodes as well.

While you’re actually talking, it helps to have a timer in your peripheral vision so you can pace yourself. If you don’t get it right the first few times, don’t fret; you can always take care of it during editing.

When planning the content, it’s also smart to plan how often you can upload a new podcast. Consider what kind of schedule you can commit to.

You don’t need to upload a new episode every day, but you do need a consistent schedule.

A weekly podcast is a usual frequency, but you can also opt for a twice-weekly, twice-monthly, or monthly podcast.

Step 7. Record your podcast episodes.

After you’ve planned your episodes, you can finally start recording them.

Set up your equipment: plug in your microphone and your headphones, fire up your recording software, and start talking.

Podcast Recording

Doing a solo podcast might seem awkward at first because it feels like talking to yourself. Talking to a photo of someone you can imagine as your target audience, even if it’s just a stock photo, can help you feel like you’re actually talking to someone.

If you’re interviewing someone remotely, the usual way to do this is via Skype, while being recorded by a software, such as Pamela for Skype or MP3 Skype Recorder. They both have free versions, but it’s more advisable to use the paid ones.

Step 8. Edit your podcast episode.

Editing audio involves splicing together the intro, audio clips, and the outro, as well as any other audio files you need to include, like sound bites, songs, or advertisements.

It also involves refining the sound and eliminating as much background noise as possible.

Your editing process will vary, depending on the software you’re using. Browse video tutorials specific to your software on YouTube or Vimeo so there are screen captures and complete audio instructions.

Step 9. Publish your podcast episodes to your hosting provider.

This is a short step: simply upload your finished episodes to your podcast. The particulars will vary according to your hosting provider.

Step 10. Promote your podcast episodes.

Once you’ve uploaded your podcast to your hosting provider, you can now start getting listeners to your podcast.

First, upload your podcast to directories. Here are the main podcast directories where you can upload your episodes:

Then, if you have social media accounts related to your business, share links to your podcast and podcast episodes to your social media followers.

Also, if you have an email list, it’s worth spreading the word to your email subscribers as well.

And if your business has a website and a blog within it, create a blog post featuring your podcast episode. This works better if you can have the podcast episode transcribed because your blog readers would tend to expect text content when they visit your blog.

5 Ways to Earn Serious Cash from Podcating

Here are 5 ways successful personalities get to talk about the things they love, work from home, and make a killing podcasting:

1. Sponsorships

The most common way podcasters earn money is through sponsorships.

However, only popular podcasters are able to attract advertisers, since the main factors sponsors look for are traffic and audience number. Of course, sponsors would likely check the niche of podcasters to gauge if mentioning their products/services on the show would translate to successful conversion rates.

Some podcast hosts, such as Blubrry and Libsyn, include ad opportunities to shows. You can also find a service that connects you to advertisers. Midroll is a good example of this, but note that these types of services take a cut from your earnings. Podcasters earn a lot more if advertisers contact them directly for sponsorships.

Ad rates for podcasts follow the CPM (cost per impression) model. The average rate of 1,000 downloads come at $18 per 15-second pre-roll slot, or $25 per 60-second mid-roll slot. This can go higher depending on the number of audience a podcaster has. For instance, if a specific episode earns 20,000 listeners, the sponsor would need to pay you $500 for the 60-second ad.

2. Affiliate Marketing

The best thing about affiliate marketing is that if done right, it could give podcasters a passive income.

Like sponsorships, podcasters have different ways of implementing this into their show. The easiest would be to join affiliate programs from known retailers like Amazon. But if your show can’t fit in Amazon products into an episode, it’s best not to force it and opt for another way instead.

Commission Junction and other affiliate advertising networks also host a wide range of products and services that podcasters could promote “on air.”

But it’s important not to promote anything unrelated to your niche, or else it might be too obvious you’re taking advantage of your listeners’ buying potential.

If Amazon isn’t an option and you can’t find items to promote from affiliate ad networks, your next bet is to create your own affiliate program. You can do this by seeking partnerships from companies that are somewhat relevant to your niche. You’d have to pitch the idea to retailers or other companies, so prepare your podcast’s stats.

Just like in sponsorships, anyone (whether a person or company) that partners with you would want to see large numbers, but impressive conversation rates are the reason they’d bite what you’re offering.

3. Selling Products

If running after sponsors isn’t your thing, you can sell your own products on your show.

It would be a lot of work, especially since you’re going to develop the product from start to finish before you could promote it on air, but the advantage of this path is that you’ll receive majority of profit instead of getting a tiny commission just like what affiliate marketing offers.

Another benefit of creating and selling your own products is that there are tons of options, from ebooks to courses, SaaS products, and even real products that can be shipped to a physical address.

You can even sell a set of videos, bundled as a paid subscription. This allows podcasters like you to create something within your niche that provides the most value to your listeners.

Once you’ve decided on the products to sell, you can now implement a sales funnel, where you give away freebies or discounted items, before showcasing more expensive products.

4. Offer Services

Podcasters with a huge following can easily offer services to its listeners.

This can be anything from one-on-one coaching, consulting, guest writing, speaking engagements, design, or any other services within a podcaster’s skillset.

The services that you offer may start small, but as long as you provide value to your customers, be prepared for word-of-mouth to double your paying customers over time.

For those who don’t feel comfortable teaching, you can simply offer flat fees for certain solutions. For example, writing a podcast script for a company, or setting up an individual’s podcast business, can be done on the side and doesn’t require a full-time commitment.

Think of your podcast as a marketing tool and develop strategies that would expand your podcasting efforts into other money-making endeavors.

5. Crowdfunding and Donations

Crowdfunding can be a smart way to begin your podcasting career, but it will only work if you already have an active community that would gladly finance your project in the form of pledges. Crowdfunding platforms like Patreon make the pledging possible.

You can also ask your listeners for donations. You’d be surprised at how many people are willing to give money in exchange for free information or entertainment that you’ve been giving them. Since a donation option gives your listeners the power to decide how much they’re donating, they’ll see this as their way to give back.

Just remind them about your donation button as often as possible.

Start A Podcast Today!

Hopefully, you’re convinced that starting a podcast can benefit your business greatly.

Here’s a recap of the steps to start a podcast:

  1. Validate your podcast idea.
  2. Think of a podcast name, cover art, podcast description, and theme music.
  3. Gather your equipment.
  4. Download the necessary software.
  5. Select a podcast hosting provider.
  6. Plan your podcast episodes.
  7. Record your podcast episodes.
  8. Edit your podcast episode.
  9. Publish your podcast episodes to your hosting provider.
  10. Promote your podcast episodes.

Planning to make a podcast soon? Or have you tried starting a podcast and want to expand your reach? Share your podcasting stories and experiences in the comments!

Is Amazon KDP Still a Good Business in 2020?

Amazon KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) has been around since late 2007, but it was in 2010 to 2015 that many regular people were transformed into published authors overnight and actually made Amazon KDP their business.

Those who have been rejected by traditional publishers are some of the biggest fans of the program, but is it still worth the trouble in 2020 and beyond?

5 Reasons Why You Should Continue Your Amazon KDP Business

If you’re having doubts of joining the Amazon KDP community as an author, here are 5 reasons why it remains a solid business model:

1. The Niches are Expanding

In the past, it is common knowledge that fiction outsold non-fiction in the Kindle library. But the genres mostly focused on romance, mystery, and fantasy, so authors like Mike Omer (from the Spider’s Web series and “A Killer’s Mind” fame) stuck to these categories.

Today, many more niches are being put on the spotlight of the Top 100, from the how-to and self-help “aisle”, to the science fiction, young adult, adventure and even inspirational and women’s fiction.

Some of them are still pretty competitive, but since people’s interests are expanding to more categories, it means there are higher chances for your chosen category to be explored by a significant number of people.

2. Better Stats Lead to Targeted Book Goals

By 2018, there were 90.5 million e-readers in the U.S. alone. Imagine how many people have joined the fun and discovered the world of ebooks.

In 2019, the ebook industry earned a whopping $2.04 billion. It’s still definitely smaller than its print counterpart (which took in $22.6 billion revenues that year) though.

What’s interesting is that even if the use of e-book readers has been seeing a decline in recent years, there’s data to support that Kindle books are gaining fans thanks to hundreds of popular book series.

And publishers are raking in cash because of they are able to reel in readers with cheap (or free copies of their) first book, then earn from subsequent books of the series.

3. Removes the Need to go the Traditional Publishing Route

Many people who dream of becoming a published author are crushed when their dreams don’t turn into reality for one reason or another, such as:

  • Publishing house not interested in the story
  • Author has no connection to any publisher
  • Lack in marketing or networking
  • Authors who have awesome books, but are unsure how to present their work
  • and so on…

With the Amazon KDP route, the rules are totally different. First of all, since Amazon accepts publishers directly, there’s no need to shop around for a publishing house. You wouldn’t have to experience being rejected by publishers anymore.

While you do have to learn how to market your own ebook to improve sales, you can also outsource this task to agencies who specialize in these kinds of things.

4. Amazon KDP Newbies Welcome

This is my favorite thing about Amazon KDP – it levels the playing field between beginners and published authors, or famous people.

Regular people begin juggling real life with writing on the side, until they reach success enough to quit their day jobs. For example:

  • Samantha Christy used to be a Computer Systems Analyst and stay-at-home mom before she became the author of “Purple Orchids.” Her husband even quit his job a couple of years later to handle her taxes and other behind-the-scenes of Samantha’s publishing business.
  • Alexa Riley is the pen name of two friends (Melissa King and Lea Robinson) who has over 100 romance novels under their belts. Since 2014, these two ladies have been writing “cheesy love stories with a happy ending” non-stop.
  • Melissa Leong was a former business journalist who wrote vampire novel “What Kills Me” and got rejected by 20 publishers before uploading it on Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing site. She tried to sell it for $3 a copy, but only got thousands of sales when she took it down to 99 cents. You’d think this was a bad thing, since Leong earned less than what she would have earned at $3 a pop. But her decision to reduce the price led to a spot on the Bestseller list, an ocean of fans, and even movie offers.

Aside from the actual writing and marketing authors have to do, there aren’t much obstacles beginner authors have to face in self-publishing with Amazon.

5. Unlimited Opportunities for Talented Authors

Melissa Leong isn’t the only one who had her life turned upside down (in a good way) through Amazon KDP.

Like her experience, many authors whose first book become best-sellers suddenly get a boost in creativity as their fans and sales increase, follow it up quickly with a second part, or another ebook with a completely different story/topic.

The opportunities doesn’t stop at Amazon too! Successful authors usually receive offers for TV or movie adaptations, calls for interviews with the press, features on magazines/blogs, consulting gigs, writing courses/coaching stints, and other opportunities that are found outside KDP.

The Future of Amazon KDP

You know that you can make money online with ebooks, but you’re unsure if it remains a lucrative business in 2020 and beyond. That’s a totally valid dilemma since writing ebooks are not an easy feat.

There will be flops, such as ebooks trying to cash in on the covid19 crisis when some of the best scientists of the world are still trying to learn about the virus. But if you do a little digging and research before you decide on the genre and theme of your ebook, the future of your Amazon KDP business can be bright.

Don’t believe blog posts from people claiming that you can only earn money from Amazon if you have a ton of ghostwriters who would do the writing for you.

If you have content you want to publish, as long as you follow Amazon’s guidelines, there is no limit to the number of ebooks you could release to the “world” and the amount of money you could possibly earn.

5 Places to Get a Free Business Phone Number in 2020

While many of us might not make a lot of phone calls anymore (at least, I know I prefer to mostly send text messages), businesses still do and that’s because speaking to a client over the phone is just easier and builds more trust than an email can.

If you’re a small business owner, gig-worker, or a freelancer then you might want to look into these services that provide free business phone numbers.

Here’s why it’s important to get a separate phone number for your business:

I know that as a small business owner you need to save where you can. Having a free business number for your side-gig not only spares you the cost of getting a landline or an additional phone plan but it also adds a sense of credibility and professionalism to your business.

These days, a lot of people tend to just use their personal phone number as their business number, and while there’s nothing wrong with that, some of our personal lives tend to spill over that way.

For instance, if the client has a messenger like WhatsApp too (which is likely since it’s such a hugely popular messaging service), then they will see all of your profile pictures, statuses, and updates.

On top of that, keeping things organized on a phone that’s used for both your business ventures and personal life gets tricky after a while.

Luckily, there are a number of ways you can get a free business phone number here in the US. I’ve listed some of them below so you can find one that fits your needs.

Do Freelancers and Gig-Workers Really Benefit From Having a Business Phone Number?

It might not seem like it, but yes, you can benefit from getting a separate phone number for your business whether you’re starting a catering business or you have your own floral boutique at home.

Depending on the work you do, you’ll have to pitch to clients, save important contacts, maintain a list of leads, and set up a schedule so you don’t forget anything.

Getting a free business phone number means you can do all of that without having to pay for an additional phone number or another phone.

Though some people do like having a separate phone for work, which is fine as well – it doesn’t have to be an expensive one and you can still use a free phone number on it instead of going for a full plan.

While having a business phone number won’t help you with your scheduling, it can help you keep your personal phone number out of the public eye. There are a number of benefits attached to that, but the two ones that instantly come to mind are:

– not getting bombarded by spam, and

– not having to deal with creeps who now have your phone number.

But probably one of the biggest positives to having an independent phone number for your business is that you don’t have to answer it after hours. Once you’re done for the day, you can just mute those calls and even set up an automatic answering system that says you’ll call them back the next day.

How do Free Business Phone Numbers Work?

Most free business numbers are either virtual or Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) numbers. There are a few places that provide this type of service and they will either be able to provide you with a local number or a toll-free number, or both.

Make sure to check that distinction before you sign up. If your clients are spread out across the country then you should opt for the toll-free number instead of the local option.

There are also a couple of different ways this could work. You could do your inbound and outbound calls over a desktop phone. But you would need a headset with a microphone for that.

Otherwise, you can just have your business calls forwarded to your regular phone. This works just as well and is the better option if you tend to frequently be out of the office during work hours.

5 Free Business Phone Number Services

1. Google Voice

We use Google services for pretty much everything these days – from getting work done in Docs or Sheets, to using our Google Calendars for scheduling appointments. So, of course, there’s a Google Voice as well.

The Google Voice app is pretty easy to use and you should be fairly familiar with its setup if you already use any other Google services. The app lets you make free calls (and send free text messages) on your computer and Android or iOS phones.

It comes with some great features too, including the ability to filter spam calls – something all of us need these days – and transcribe voicemails so you can read them later.

This free service is really great for anyone that travels around a lot, but the only caveat is that it supplies you with a local number. If you need a toll-free number to connect with clients in other states then you’ll need to go for a different option. Luckily there are plenty of others!

2. Phone.com

This is a fairly well-known VoIP service that is easy to use on both desktop and mobile devices.

This service isn’t technically free as they have a few pricing plans based on the number of minutes you can call every month. However, their base plan (currently $13/month) does come with a 30-day money-back guarantee and so I felt they warranted a mention here because Phone.com is pretty popular.

The service offers a long list of standard and premium features, that I’m not going to go through here. But a few noteworthy mentions include professional voice recording, voicemail to email, Caller ID (for incoming and outgoing calls), and hold music.

Phone.com provides both local and toll-free numbers which means you’re free to choose the option that best suits you.

3. eVoice

This virtual phone service offers both local and toll-free business phone numbers to people in the US and Canada. It comes with a 30-day free trial, after which you’ll have to pay a monthly subscription, unfortunately.

There are several perks to eVoice, though, and they have a few different subscription tiers to choose from so you can pick a cheap tier if you don’t need a lot of bells and whistles.

There are some terrific bells and whistles, however, if you want them. You’ll get to choose your own number from a list, have a professionally recorded greeting, and get an auto attendant who answers your calls and can route calls to your smartphone or another device (or both if one is for customer service and the other is for billing, for instance).

4. CallCentric

CallCentric is a great option if you want a free business number for inbound calls because it’s free to receive any number of calls on the service. But if you want to make calls yourself, then you’ll have to pay.

That said, any calls you make to other CallCentric or VOIP numbers are also free. And if you do need to make calls to non-VOIP numbers then their plans are still a fantastic option. You get 120 minutes a month for just $2 on the basic plan.

5. FreedomVoice

This is another service that offers a free 30-day trial, after which you’ll have to pay $10 per month (for the basic plan). While this isn’t ideal considering you actually want a free service, the perks help make up for it, at least.

With FreedomVoice you also get a virtual auto assistant, can forward calls to any phone, have unlimited voicemail, and the ability to send and receive faxes online.

If you want, you can also opt to get a vanity business phone number instead, for a $30 activation fee (luckily it’s once-off). This is a tempting option for anyone who would like a unique and memorable number.

The Bottom Line

Keep in mind though, that calls through any of these services are made over the internet and so you will need a connection to be able to make and receive calls.

Depending on how strong your connection is, you might also experience dropped calls or bad “reception” at times.

Also, remember that any calls you make over a network could be intercepted. Although, there are a couple of things you can do to make sure your business stays safe from online threats (and not just in terms of making a phone call) so be sure to check them out.

How to Work from Home as an Online Personal Trainer

An online personal trainer is just any kind of personal trainer employed by your favorite gym, except the coaching and guidance all happen online.

Our fast-paced lives and technological advancements have paved the way for online personal trainers to be a thing. They’re actually pretty in-demand…and for good reason.

The market for online personal trainers are pretty diverse.

They can be:

  • People who prefer not to spend on gym memberships – In the S., the estimated average monthly cost of a gym membershipis $58, but this can vary depending on gym location, specialization, and even in-house trainers.
  • People who have home gyms – Those who have invested money to build their own home gyms, but require a bit of guidance beyond what he/she reads online will definitely benefit from hiring an online personal trainer.
  • People who prefer to work alone – Whatever reason may be for wanting to work out alone, whether you see yourself as an introvert, moody person, or just lack social skills, having an online personal trainer means you can skip huge groups of people and just focus on one.
  • People who have limited time for extracurricular activities like going to the gym – If you’re busy with work, kids, school, business, or any other tasks that make it impossible to add visiting the gym into your schedule, having an online personal trainer would make total sense.

So if you’re passionate with fitness or have been a personal trainer in brick-and-mortar fitness centers, here’s your chance to broaden your clients, start your own personal training business, and make money in fitness. 

5 Ways You Can Become an Online Personal Trainer

You can always mix and match these types of programs whichever you feel fits your client base, but in general, these are common ways personal trainers earn money online:

1. One-on-one or Group Online Coaching

Whether you offer your personal training services to a single person or a group, this kind of training is personal because you provide tips and advice to all the people involved in the program.

This type of online personal training is very similar to gym-based training, except you communicate to your clients via phone, e-mail, Skype, through an app, or even a special software.

2. PDF or Video Fitness Programs

You can also bring your personal training experience without personalized coaching, but you’d have to put in effort in developing a complete fitness program wrapped in an eBook, or a series of videos that clients can follow.

Either PDF or videos are pre-made, so any new client could just hop on board and follow the program without additional work from you.

3. Hybrid

You are the boss of your personal training business, so you can create a hybrid fitness program if you want to. For example:

  • Personal Coaching and Pre-made Fitness ProgramsAs an online personal trainer, you can also mix pre-made fitness programs with personalized coaching. You can be involved every step of the way as your clients follow the ebook or video series that you made.
  • In-person and Online Training – Maybe you own a boutique gym and still cater to clients personally. If this is the case and you want to transition into online, this kind of hybrid training could work for you. Just make sure your clients would bite as well.

If you have certification in nutrition, you can even add diet programs into the mix.

4. Site Memberships

Site memberships combine everything from videos to personal coaching, fitness and diet programs, as well as other new activities. Just take a look at Fitness Blender’s PB Plus, which gives special access to programs, premium apps, and no-ads viewing to those who pay for membership.

5. LIVE Video Chat Workouts

Online personal trainers also offer live training for their clients. In this scenario, both the trainer and the client are communicating via video chat (such as Skype), or a special personal training software (such as gymGO) where trainers can correct posture while clients lift weights, dance the zumba as the client follows, or even hold a yoga lesson for a group of friends.

Things You Need to Start an Online Personal Training Business

Before setting up your online personal training business, make  sure you work on these several things:

Specialization

Personal training requires magic. Either you have what it takes to inspire people, drive people to reach their goals, and coach them to do better… or not. As such, it’s very hard to become a “do-it-all” personal trainer, especially if you’re doing this career online.

Stick to what you know best. For example, focus on weight loss, HIIT exercises, Crossfit, Zumba, yoga, weight training, MMA, and so on. You’ll have a more targeted niche, which will attract a specific crowd as well.

Unlike other service-based businesses, a personal trainer’s personality is a big reason why would-be clients would choose him/her over dozens of other trainers. When building your business, market “yourself” as the product and service, but make sure you’re not just about the business. Keep it honest, keep it human.

Experience and Certification

If you’re new to the industry, it is better to build experience at traditional gyms first, before transitioning to the online world.

Certifications are not really a requirement, since you are allowed to coach people with training, but being a certified personal trainer could land your name on official lists across the city, state or country. That alone could bring in new clients to your “door” without any effort.

Clients

You’ll need clients to turn your passion into a money-making business.

Building a client base is definitely the hardest phase, but once you’ve coached a few people with everything you got and they’ve given you nothing but praises, the word of mouth can jumpstart your career.

Other ways of finding clients include advertising, networking, “going viral,” sharing valuable information, and hosting contests or giveaways.

Note that you have to think about finding new clients continuously, even after your business picks up.

Love for Technology

Because you are now an online personal trainer, your business will revolve around the web, social media, your website, special fitness software and even fitness apps. These apps and programs will help you in accepting payment, hosting giveaways, organizing contact list, and so on.

As much as you’d like interacting with people. personal trainers should also have a natural love for technology and be up-to-date with the latest organizational program, schedule “meetings,” and so on.

Willingness to Adapt

Technological advancements are never-ending and people want the next best thing. You should be able to adapt as changes happen. This also goes with your self-written ebook fitness programs, or video series, since new information in the medical or fitness fields could dispute the information you taught in the past.

Adapting to changes ensure that your clients won’t leave you because of a poor app you haven’t updated for years, or an old workout routine that has been recently proven bad to the knees.

10 Ways You Can Grow as an Online Personal Trainer

I’m going to tell you a story about a husband and wife named Daniel and Kelli Segars, who started creating YouTube fitness-related videos from their garage in 2009 and has since turned their fitness coaching channel “Fitness Blender” into a million-dollar business.

And if you’re interested in an online fitness coaching career without relying on a client-to-client basis as traditional fitness trainers do, check out several tips on how to make it work based on The Segars’ success story.

The Story of Fitness Blender

Before Fitness Blender launched its own website and offered comprehensive weight loss programs there, Daniel and Kelli had been uploading YouTube videos to earn “extra cash” during the start of the recession.

By 2012, the couple was able to quit their day jobs and focus on Fitness Blender full-time.

As of mid-2017, their YouTube channel has a whopping 44 million subscribers, while its most popular video “10 Minute Ab Workout” has 47 million views.

The Segars have also moved to a new house with the same-looking white-background garage, but now with a spare room as their office.

10 Things You Could Learn from Fitness Blender

1. Find a Unique Selling Point

The Segars just got married, signed for their first house, Daniel lost most of his personal-training clients, and Kelli’s work hours from selling gym membership got reduced – all in one weekend in August 2008.

With the Great Recession in full swing and the couple doing several odd jobs to pay for mortgage, the couple had the idea that if people can’t afford personal trainers anymore, they should offer their services online (for free) in exchange for cents from YouTube’s ad program.

To this day, authenticity is the theme of Fitness Blenders, and subscribers love it.

2. Start Small

The Segars had $5,000 to invest on the production of their videos.

They kept everything simple – a white-painted wall as backdrop, no music (to avoid legal fees), a DIY studio light from hardware-bought light bulbs and just an ordinary video camera.

The couple even edited their videos themselves via iMovie.

3. Know What You’re Selling

Daniel has a degree in Food and Nutrition, with years of experience as a personal trainer.

Kelli has degrees in both Sociology and Psychology, with work experience in the fitness industry since 2006.

The workouts that they do are simple, but they’re all backed by science. So are their weeks-long weight-loss programs and meal plans.

The couple didn’t just decide to become online fitness coaches out of the blue – it was their real-life profession and you can definitely see that they know what they’re doing.

4. Avoid Gimmicks

Daniel and Kelli’s videos become popular because of how genuine they are.

Both of them looked nothing like the cookie-cutter images of the fitness industry – Daniel wasn’t buffed to the extreme with veins popping, while Kelli never tanned or put on sexy clothes for the clicks.

They also never yell, or pump you out to “do your best.” They simply instruct.

Aside from their looks, Fitness Blender videos are never gimmicky.

Viewers actually relate to the couple, since they don’t edit out falls (while performing workouts), or panting.

You can even see them sweat, or have a hard time during parts of the workout. They’re not as preppy as what we’ve come to know in fitness videos.

Kelli even admitted that she was so shy about appearing on those videos at the start that Daniel had to voice-over instructions. She eventually got out from her shell and began instructing moves on the videos, but the authenticity remained.

5. Learn SEO and internet marketing

The couple’s first AdSense check (from YouTube views) was worth 9 cents.

They were happy with their initial earnings. But what propelled their videos was Kelli’s knowledge of search engine optimization (SEO) and internet marketing. She was an expert, but she knew how to use keywords to Fitness Blender’s advantage.

While working odd jobs to stay afloat in 2008, Kelli was writing “how-to” articles online part-time.

With this job, she learned how to create click-bait titles and content, which The Segars used with every video they uploaded. Soon, their SEO-optimized videos reached the top of Google searches and were able to legally manipulate search engine results extremely well.

6. Sell Affordable Products

When the couple launched their website, they decided to sell complete workout programs.

What’s interesting about these programs is that most content are readily-available on YouTube for free, but people bought them for how The Segars packaged their product.

First, the programs were affordable (somewhere from $5 to $15 with discounts every now and then).

Plus, the couple took advantage of the number one question their YouTube subscribers asked: “what workout should I do in order to …” lose weight, build muscles, etc.

From there, they organized their videos and created a workout calendar people could follow based on their needs. Having a guide to sort through hundreds of Fitness Blender did the trick, and their programs sold like hotcakes.

7. Choose Your Opportunities Wisely

Fame brings all kinds of opportunities and there were various offers that landed the Fitness Blender team.

One hotel wanted Fitness Blender to shoot their videos in front of their beachfront property.

The couple was even offered a TV show. But Daniel and Kelli declined, knowing that if they accepted these opportunities, their authenticity (their unique selling point) along with their reputation could be greatly affected, and not in a good way.

Instead, the couple decided to upgrade their website with more content. This time, they created meal plans that would work perfectly with the workout programs they were currently offering.

8. Provide Value

Viewers of Fitness Blender love the no-nonsense approach of the videos.

Whether the couple is giving out fitness tips, or announcing a new product, viewers accept these with open arms because every video Fitness Blender uploads provide some kind of value to the viewers.

9. Give Thanks

Daniel and Kelli have come a long way since they began their YouTube channel, but the couple knows who made it possible.

Every now and again, The Segars give thanks to their subscribers, customers, and followers just because. It’s always good business to make your customers feel valued, and the Fitness Blender team’s genuine acknowledgement of their market is the reason why they have happy, loyal fans around the world.

10. Never Stop

Even with 500+ videos uploaded on YouTube and a million-dollar business, the couple still uploads new content every week.

This, even if Kelli admits that she doesn’t like to work out sometimes (even if she knows it would make her feel better afterward). It’s a refreshing thing to hear, and inspirational for regular folk like us who hate working out.

The Bottom Line

Sometimes, personal trainers begin their business on social networks. Those who found fame as brand ambassadors or influencers get their client base directly from Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube. In these cases, the personal trainers themselves serve as their portfolio and people get inspired by their transformations.

If you’re starting out from real-world to online, it’s never too late as well. By following the steps I posted above, you’ll have a basic understanding how you can operate your own personal training business even in the comforts of your own home.

People Are Getting Rich From TikTok. Here’s How.

TikTok is a popular social media app that has taken the world by storm.

Ever heard of Kombucha girl, Kylie Jenner singing “rise and shine,” and the Old Town Road Challenge?

That’s because TikTok has been the center of meme culture and viral dance challenges in the last year.

Sometimes it’s funny, sometimes it’s awkward, but it’s definitely addictive.

What you might not know that people are making money on TikTok. And you can get in on that action.

In today’s blog post, I’m going to discuss how to make money on TikTok.

What Is Tiktok?

TikTok is a video-sharing social network that allows you to create and share 15-second videos on an app.

It was formerly known as Musical.ly, which mostly featured videos of users lip syncing to popular songs.

Today, TikTok offers an extensive selection of sounds and song snippets. You can also add special effects and Snapchat-like filters.

More recently, they added a Reactions feature, allowing users to record and share their reactions to videos.

What sets it apart from other social media networks is that unlike Instagram and Facebook, TikTok is more of an entertainment platform rather than a lifestyle one.

As of 2019, TikTok has over 500 million users, 41% of whom are aged between 16 and 24 years old, and 55.6% of whom are male.

But even though the app is still overwhelmingly more popular among teens and young adults, the use of TikTok among adults has been increasing among older adults, especially in the US.

Set Up Your TikTok So You Can Start Earning Money

When you’re getting ready to make money on TikTok, every piece of content you’re posting should be geared toward entertaining your current followers while getting new followers interested in you and your content.

Here’s how you set up your TikTok so you can start making money from it.

1. Create a unique profile.

Your TikTok ID and profile photo/video are the first things people see when they browse, so make sure you come up with a TikTok ID and an eye-catching profile photo, or better yet, a profile video that captures your personality.

TikTok Model

Your bio is another place where you can persuade people to follow you. Be as inviting and welcoming as you sincerely can.

Link your Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter to your TikTok account, so you can promote your TikTok on these other accounts, and vice versa.

2. Start posting compelling videos.

If you want to be popular on TikTok, your content needs to be captivating, interesting, and shareworthy.

Here are some ideas for TikTok videos that you might want to use.

Lip sync videos. This was what the Musical.ly app was originally known for. Lip sync to a currently popular song and put your own creative twist to it.

Duet videos. There’s an option to share a non-private video and take a video of yourself singing along with it or interacting with it.

Pet videos. If you have a cute pet dog or cat, or any other adorable pet, videos of them just hanging out and being cute can become highly popular.

Challenges. When there’s already a viral challenge going around, it pays to hop on the bandwagon and do your own version of it. Remember, you want to create videos that your audience will like.

It has even more potential to be found by new followers when there’s a hashtag associated with the challenge, because your video will be “filed” under that hashtag, and can be found by those who are tapping that hashtag.

Dance videos. From time to time, viral challenges involve dance crazes, and you’ll probably need to practice a lot if this isn’t your strong suit.

TikTok Dancers

But posting your version of a dance challenge is one of the easiest ways to be found by TikTok users.

Events. If you’re in a highly popular event, like a music festival or a convention, take a video of yourself in the event while it’s going on.

Your talents. What unique talents do you have? Can you trap rap? Or do spoken word poetry? Or do calligraphy? Or paint? You can use TikTok to show off these talents.

Whatever’s trending. Pay attention to trending catchphrases, memes, concepts, and content on social media, YouTube, and Google Trends, as well as on TikTok itself.

3. Boost your popularity on TikTok.

To be able to earn at least a few dollars of side cash on TikTok, you need to aim to have over 10,000 followers and a high engagement ratio; that is, the number of likes and comments over the number of views should be a high percentage.

Be consistent. If you need to create a schedule and an alarm to remind you, do it. Users need to consistently see quality videos on your TikTok profile.

Consistently doesn’t necessarily mean every day. If you commit to posting twice a week, for example, every Wednesday and Friday, make sure you stick to that such that your followers come to expect it.

Promote your TikTok on other channels. Link to your TikTok profile from your other channels: Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, etc. Also, if you already have a website, you can promote it there as well.

Connect with other popular TikTok users. You don’t need to pander to them, but if you network with other TikTok users who are popular, you might be able to get into duets with them and you might be able to get more exposure to their followers.

Engage with your followers. Reply to comments on your videos, and at the same time, like and comment on your followers’ videos. Showing that you’re interested in your followers as more than just spectators makes them more loyal to you.

Be positive. Steer away from negative or controversial content. You’ll hear that “bad publicity is still publicity,” but given the current climate, users don’t want to see negative content on a platform where they expect to be entertained.

How To Make Money On TikTok

The main ways you can earn money on TikTok are dependent on your popularity on the platform, and this is why you need to have an extensive follower count first before you even think of monetizing.

Here are a few ways you can make money on TikTok.

1. Earning TikTok diamonds

Even though getting TikTok coins isn’t very lucrative, this is probably the easiest way to earn some cash from your followers.

How TikTok’s virtual items work is a bit complicated, so I’ll try to break it down.

TikTok users can buy TikTok Coins with their actual money. Then, TikTok users can send TikTok Gifts (equivalent to a certain number of TikTok Coins) to other TikTok users on a live broadcast.

When you’re on a live broadcast and your followers send you Gifts, these Gifts become TikTok Diamonds that show up on your profile. How many Diamonds you have indicate to other TikTok users how popular you are.

When you make enough diamonds, you can collect the cash via PayPal or another credible payment service. The minimum withdrawal amount is at least $100, and the maximum weekly amount you can withdraw is $1,000.

To be clear, only TikTok Coins can be used to send Gifts, only Gifts can be converted to Diamonds, and only Diamonds can be converted to cash.

The cash value of Coins, the Coin value of Gifts, the Gift value of Diamonds, and the Diamond value of cash are all at the sole determination of TikTok and may change from time to time.

2. Affiliate marketing

Whether you’re already an affiliate marketer or just starting out, promoting on your TikTok can help you increase traffic to your affiliate links.

TikTok is currently testing a feature that allows users to add one link on their TikTok profiles and links on their actual videos so that viewers can click on these links and be directed to the page of the product or service they’re promoting.

This feature isn’t available for all TikTok users just yet, so for now, you’ll have to display the URL as text on your TikTok profile as well as on your videos. For your viewers to go to the link, they’ll have to type it out on their browser.

It isn’t very straightforward, but if you’re persuasive enough, you just might get it to work.

For more information about how to start affiliate marketing, read this article.

3. Influencer marketing: sponsored videos

Influencers are individuals who have a widespread social following and are viewed as experts or at the very least knowledgeable about a particular topic or niche.

If you’re popular enough on TikTok, and if your followers are part of a certain target market, interested brands can work with you and pay you for directly or indirectly advertising their products or services.

Indirect advertising or product placement is more subtle and feels like an organic part of your videos.

Nike brand ambassador

On the other hand, brands can ask you to be a brand ambassador, wherein you actively talk about the product or service and recommend it to your followers.

The good thing is that you usually don’t have to change your personal style of creating content. In fact, it’s discouraged because then you alienate the very followers you and the brand you’re working with are trying to reach.

You can either wait for brands to approach you, or you could directly approach brands yourself, which gives you quicker results.

4. Sell merchandise

Traditionally, only rockstars and pop musicians had their own merchandise. T-shirts, caps, bags, and other apparel are the most popular ones that are sold with the artists’ likeness or logos.

Now, social media celebrities produce and sell their own merchandise, and their most loyal followers buy them.

When you become extremely popular on TikTok, you may want to work on launching your own merch line.

Make sure you’re protected by copyright law; if you need to register your brand and trademark, do it.

Then, decide what type of merch you want to sell. Do you want to start small, like with pins or stickers? Or do you want to go with apparel? Or maybe souvenirs, such as mugs, keychains, or magnets?

If you yourself are an artist or calligrapher on TikTok, you may want to sell your creations themselves, or your artwork or lettering printed on merchandise.

Once you’ve decided what you’re going to sell, partner up with a brand that you trust to produce high-quality merch.

Don’t forget to ask to see a mockup of your merchandise first before you order the first batch that you’re going to sell.

Once you have the merch in stock, you can now promote on your TikTok profile and videos the website where your followers can buy your merch, whether it’s on a third-party e-commerce website, like Facebook Marketplace, or on your own website.

Start Making Money On TikTok Today!

TikTok is one of the fastest-growing social media platforms in the world that provides an alternative way for users to express their creativity.

It has great potential to be as popular as other video-sharing apps like Instagram and YouTube, as long as the platform continues innovating and growing its user base.

Thus, the potential for earning money from TikTok is also great for you.

Make no mistake, however. There’s no shortcut to making money on TikTok. It requires hard work, creativity, creating value, and a little bit of luck.

Other Ways To Earn From Social Media

Are you currently a TikTok user? What do you think about using it to earn some cash? Tell us in the comments!

Here’s How To Start A Business With No Money

“I’ve got a great idea for a business, but I just don’t have the money to get it started.”

Does this sound like you?

It’s true that starting a business is so much easier with capital, not having money shouldn’t scare you off.

Starting a business with no money might seem like a far-fetched idea at first, but I promise you it’s doable.

In today’s blog post, I discuss how to start a business with no money.

How To Start A Business Without Money

Traditionally, to build a business, you would normally start from a business idea, build it up using your capital, and earn money from it eventually.

But starting a business without capital requires a change in your mindset.

Here are the steps on how to prepare to start a business with no money.

1. Work with what you have.

Look at the resources you have and how you can use them effectively to start up your business.

Think about your skills. What fundamental skills do you have that can help you start up your business? What technical skills do you have? What personal skills do you have that can help you professionally?

Business plan prep

Next, take stock of your knowledge. What degree, training, and classes do you have under your belt that you can apply in your business?

Reflect on your experience, both professional and personal, and think about what you can offer. What have you done previously that you’re good at and can convert into a profitable business?

Consider your connections as well. Who do you know that can help you in starting your business, either as a mentor, partner, supplier, or any other role? Do the people you know possibly know other people that can help you as well?

2. Draw up a solid business plan based on the resources you have.

No matter what business idea you have, it’s always good to start with a solid plan that you can always refer to.

It’s especially important to have a business blueprint and financial plan especially when you’re starting a business with no money. Outline the fundamentals of your business and how you can obtain them with your limited resources.

Do and get everything you can do and get for free.

List down what you need for your business and figure out alternatives.

For instance, the primary requirement for an online business is a website. However, domain names and hosting cost money.

If you have absolutely no money to start up your own website at this point, figure out temporary alternatives. Can you possibly start with a free website service and then switch to a paid website later? Or maybe even use a Facebook page first?

The same goes for other marketing tools you need: tools for email marketing and autoresponders, keyword research, social media, graphics design, scheduling, accounting, communication, project management, and other such tools.

There are plenty of free tools and resources available on the internet. Some are readily available, while others require you to dig deeper than the first page of your search results.

With plenty of patience and a bit of luck, you’ll be able to get the fundamental requirements of your online business for free or for very little.

3. Don’t pass up opportunities to earn side cash.

You’ll need at least some cash to operate a business if only to pay for your food, power, and internet bills.

From everyday things you already do to things you can sell for quick cash, opportunities to make side cash are all around you.

They may not seem much if you look at them per transaction, but if you scrimp and save every single penny from these side cash endeavors, you can earn just enough to keep you afloat.

You may even earn enough extra cash to put up as capital for your business.

4. Explore your funding options.

As you build up your business, you may need more capital than just the bare minimum, especially if you want to be profitable in a few months instead of a few years.

Here are some funding options you may want to consider:

• Small business grants

Frankly, small business grants aren’t easy to apply for.

However, when you’ve got your business up and running, you can try to search for small business grants for which you can meet the minimum requirements to apply.

The influx of free cash is well worth the time and effort of searching. Hopefully, you won’t be tempted to use the cash for anything else aside from growing your business.

• Angel investors

An angel investor is typically an individual who has a high net worth and cash to spare who invests in small businesses to provide capital in exchange for a stake in the company, usually through part ownership.

They’re invested in your success, so when you get an angel investor, you not only get capital, you also get a mentor that you can go to for advice on your business.

Angel investors would typically ask for their money back within a few years, so you do have some time to grow your business such that you’re able to pay them back.

You typically find angel investors through your network, but you can also try to find an angel investor interested in your business through online angel investor networks and directories.

As with small business grants, it’s not easy to find an angel investor for your business, but it’s worth the trouble.

Angel Investor

• Peer-to-peer lending

Peer-to-peer lending is a financial practice wherein lenders lend money to borrowers via a third-party application that matches lenders to borrowers.

If you borrow money through peer-to-peer lending, you’re typically subject to stricter requirements than those who are taking out personal loans. This is because you’re eligible to borrow more money for a longer period.

The interest rates may be higher than those offered by banks or financial institutions, but the applications can be done mostly online, making it easier and quicker to get a decision on your lending needs.

• Small business loan

Applying for a small business loan from your bank is another option you can take if you can handle the requirements, the interest rates, and the repayment terms.

The main requirement of a business loan from a bank is steady cash flow; that is, your business should already be making money. If you haven’t yet started up your business, you’re not likely to get approved for a loan.

Online Businesses You Can Start With No Money

At this point, you can’t afford to start businesses that require significant capital, especially product-based businesses that involve manufacturing or reselling.

Online businesses are the most logical way to start your business without money because it requires very little of you; a computer, an internet connection, and your knowledge are enough.

Here are a few online businesses you can start with no money.

1. Service-based businesses

If you have a specific skill set, this may be the only investment you need to start your online business.

You can provide this particular service on your website and promote it on all channels available to you, and the good news is that there are plenty of websites that allow you to advertise your service for free, not to mention social media.

Here are some examples of online service-based businesses:

  • Social media management
  • Virtual assistance
  • Graphics design
  • Video editing
  • Resume/cover letter writing
  • Bookkeeping
  • Travel management
  • Website creation and design
  • Copywriting/Proofreading

 

2. Dropshipping

Dropshipping is a fulfillment method wherein the retailer sells products but does not keep them in inventory.

Instead, the dropshipper offers products to buyers, collects their payment, pay third-party suppliers who then send out the products to the buyers.

Dropshipping is attractive to entrepreneurs who want to start selling products but don’t have the capital to assemble inventory.

There are plenty of dropshipping suppliers that offer a variety of products. It’s up to you to do your research and select legitimate suppliers that offer the products you’re interested in selling.

To start dropshipping, you only need to have your marketing skills and a website or an e-commerce platform to sell your products from.

3. Consultancy

A consultant is an expert in a specific field who works with an individual or business to offer professional advice.

It sounds very vague and general, but this is to your advantage. It means anyone can start a consulting business based on their expertise, years of experience, and depth of knowledge.

Consultants assess an issue, prepare a solution usually based on process, document and present that solution, and assist in implementing that solution.

Below are some types of consulting you can go into:

  • Leadership consulting
  • Marketing consulting
  • Organization consulting
  • Efficiency consulting
  • Health and wellness consulting
  • Career consulting
  • Green living consulting
  • Image consulting
  • Financial consulting

 

4. Brokerage

People hear “brokerage” and they think “stock market” (and if you’re a day trader, you can certainly start a day trading business), but it doesn’t have to be.

A brokerage business, in general, is one that brings buyers and sellers together.

You can find brokers in many different industries, such as real estate (e.g., real estate brokers bringing property sellers and buyers), recruitment and human resources (e.g., headhunters bringing job seekers and companies that are hiring), and sports (e.g., sports agents bringing athletes and sponsors together).

Find an industry that can benefit from having an online brokering service, whether competition already exists or not.

The important skills to have in starting a brokerage business are excellent lead generation, marketing, communication, and interpersonal skills.

5. Education

You can start an online education business with no money, armed with little more than your knowledge, teaching skills, and your laptop.

You can teach people various skills, such as playing musical instruments, photography, or using certain software.

You can also tutor students in subjects such as math, science, or English.

Starting an education business is a snap, even with no money. You can schedule classes and hop on to communication platforms like Skype or Zoom to hold live classes.

Alternatively, you can upload video courses to read-only shared drives and restrict access to only those who have paid.

The Bottom Line

Starting your own business with no money sounds crazy, but it’s really not impossible.

It’s going to take more time and more effort than if you have capital, but with patience, determination, and a little luck, it’s certainly feasible.

Other Resources

There are plenty of online businesses you can launch from home. Here are 50 ways to start an online business.

What’s your story?

Ever tried to start a business from scratch? Have you succeeded? Tell us your story in the comments!

6 Best Budget Apps To Download On Your Phone Today

“Where is my money going?!”

“I really need to save money.”

“I need a budget.”

How many times have we all said this to ourselves?

Luckily, we live in a time when there’s an app for everything, even budgeting our cash.

In today’s article, we compiled all the best budget apps for various budgeting needs.

The Best Budget Apps You Can Download

There are plenty of techniques and practices to save money.

But having a mobile app at your fingerprints to help you achieve your financial goals is convenient and helps you keep your eyes on your goals.

Here are the best budget apps you can use.

1. Mint

Mint.com Website

This app is one of the oldest, most popular, and most highly ranked budget apps.

Three reasons: it updates in real-time, it manages multiple accounts, and it’s free.

It remains the yardstick by which all new budget apps are measured.

Mint is a free budgeting app that allows you to manage your money and accounts all in one place.

With Mint, you can manage all your bank accounts, investment accounts, credit cards, insurance, bills, and loans in one place. They all get updated in real-time.

Your transactions get automatically categorized, and although the categorization algorithm is a bit flawed, it’s still helpful to have an idea of where your money is going.

You can even split ATM transactions into what you purchased or paid for with that cash.

Based on your spending patterns, the app also creates a budget and lets you know how much you should spend on a category. Of course, you can always edit this budget according to your actual income and needs.

When you start exceeding this budget, the app alerts you to it so you’re aware.

They also provide your credit score for free and present it such that there’s no unnecessary information that may confuse you. The information is sourced from Equifax and you can update it every three months.

Perhaps the only negative thing one can say is that there are ads, but since the app is free, they’d need somewhere to get their operating expenses from.

Cost: Free
Best for: Beginners; those who want to see everything in one dashboard.

2. You Need A Budget

Another highly popular app, YNAB is one of the best budget apps you can use.

YNAB takes an envelope-based approach to budgeting, wherein every single dollar you earn gets allocated to a specific expense. This way, every single dollar is accounted for and you know exactly where your income is going.

More importantly, it doesn’t let you create a budget for money that you don’t have; YNAB forces you to live within your actual income.

This is good for those who are (or want to become) strict budgeters, as well as those who have made the decision to keep a close eye on their finances.

If you need more help budgeting, you can sign up for classes with a live instructor and learn good financial habits that will help you achieve your goals.

A big issue that users may have is the cost, which is more than a few dollars a month. But considering all the perks, and all the good habits you can potentially pick up, this cost is more than worth it.

Another issue is that it’s mainly a website browser-based application. But Android and Apple apps are available with which you can update your spending.

Cost: $6.99 monthly, $83.99 annually; 34 days free trial
Best for: Hands-on users who want a tight hold on their finances

3. PocketGuard

PocketGuard is probably the simplest app to use among all of these.

You can link your credit cards, bank accounts, investments, and loans to the app, conveniently giving you a view of your finances.

As you spend, the app updates and categorizes the transactions that you make to help you figure out your spending patterns; what you spend on the most and if there’s any category that you can cut back on.

Based on your spending patterns, PocketGuard can draw up a budget for you based on your income, bills, and goals.

They have a feature called “In My Pocket” by which you can tell exactly how much is safe to spend without sacrificing your bills, debt repayment, and savings goals.

Cost: Free
Best for: People who want a simple, no-nonsense approach to budget

4. Albert

Albert Website

If you want an app that allows you to squeeze out pennies from your dollars, Albert may be the app for you.

Albert works in the background, using its propriety algorithm to analyze your transactions and spending patterns to figure out how much money you can afford to save.

The app then takes small amounts that it “thinks” you won’t miss and transfers it to your Albert Savings, an FDIC-insured savings account that pays you 0.25% p.a. interest.

The algorithm also figures out when not to deduct any savings when your checking account risks going too low to handle your constant expenses.

Albert Genius is an upgrade for which you can pay whatever you want. This allows you to streamline your savings and make sound investing decisions guided by their financial advisors.

Cost: Free for Basic; Pay-what-you-want for Albert Genius
Best for: Users who want to set it and forget it

5. Mvelopes

This is another budgeting app that uses the envelope-based approach.

Mvelopes takes the cash-in-envelopes approach from literal to digital, because money isn’t just cash anymore.

Set up your envelopes, mark their purpose, and assign an amount. When the cash runs out, it’s gone and can only be reset on your next pay period.

They also have a comprehensive Learning Center. Subscribing to plans higher than the Basic Plan gets you a quarterly up to a monthly coaching session.

These features ensure that you learn financial habits that will last you a lifetime.

The only downside is that there’s a monthly fee, but considering what you’re getting, it’s more than worth it.

Cost: $6 monthly for Basic Plan, $19 monthly for Plus Plan, $59 monthly for Complete Plan; 30-day free trial
Best for: Users who are already comfortable with envelope-based budgeting

6. Personal Capital

Personal Capital takes budgeting one step further and delves into wealth management.

Aside from the usual budgeting app features, Personal Capital places more emphasis on your investments: how your holdings are performing and how your portfolio is doing against major market indices.

The app keeps track of your net worth and even the fees you pay to brokers, letting you know if you’re paying too much.

Depending on how much you’ve invested, Personal Capital also offers financial and retirement planning to grow your investments further.

The downside is that its budgeting functions aren’t as good as other personal finance apps that are available to download.

Cost: Free
Best for: Investors

Things To Consider When Choosing A Budget App

You’re probably interested in a few of the apps above.

But before you download apps from Google Play Store or Apple App Store and try them out, here are some things you need to consider.

Is it simple to use?

A few instructions should be enough to get you started with an app.

If you find yourself lost in a ten-minute tutorial just to begin using it, you might have the wrong app.

How much is it?

We tend to gravitate toward the free apps.

Who doesn’t like free stuff, right?

But paid budget apps may offer additional features that are useful to you that aren’t available in free apps.

Also, having to pay for the app is a financial commitment that makes you more inclined to actually use it.

Do you like using it?

We all have our personal preferences when it comes to apps, such as the look, colors, fonts, visual elements, etc.

And it seems petty to quibble over such minor details, but don’t take it too lightly.

If you don’t like the app, you’re not going to use it, and there’s no point in downloading an app unless you’re going to use it.

Budget Apps: The Bottom Line

Fortunately, we live in a time where we don’t need to keep bulky record books, maintain complicated spreadsheets, and place cash in different envelopes.

No app is perfect, and no app is perfect for everyone. You’ll need to consider your own situation, your goals, and what approach works for you.

Remember: The best budget app is one that helps you follow the basic rule: spend less than you earn.

Want more tips on how to save? Check out these 30 saving tips

Are you having difficulty sticking to a budget? Which apps are you interested in? Share your stories below!

Here’s How to Sell Your Wedding Dress

Some will argue that their wedding dress is a one-in-a-lifetime purchase and totally worth the investment, but everyone will agree that these dresses can get pretty expensive.

One way to recoup some of the cost is to sell the wedding dress after your wedding is over.

But is there a process to follow when selling preowned wedding dresses? How do you determine the value of second hand wedding dresses?

This guide is for anyone interested in wedding dress resale, best places where to sell a wedding dress, and how to handle torn or discoloration issues and never-worn dresses.

Where Can I Sell My Wedding Dress Online?

You don’t have to go far to sell your wedding dress.

Just visit any of the websites below and pick the one that fits your situation best (price-wise and overall service):

1. Nearly Newlywed

This website is highly recommended in wedding groups and it’s easy to list a dress too!

Just upload photos of your wedding dress along with some information, pay $25 listing fee, then wait for your listing to be approved.

Once approved, Nearly Newlywed will take care of everything from buyer inquiries, payments, shipment and after-sales support.

You’ll come back into the picture once there’s a legit buyer. You’ll be given a prepaid shipping label to ship off the dress to Nearly Newlywed so the company could inspect the item for quality. Whenever looks good, Nearly Newlywed ships it off to the buyer.

  • SPECIAL SERVICES: Professional cleaning for your dress at discounted rates
  • HOW MUCH YOU EARN: You get 60% of the sales price, while Nearly Newlywed earns 40% commission for every wedding dress
  • PROS: Hands-off selling
  • CONS: $25 listing fee, plus no guarantee that the dress will be accepted

2. Still White

This site claims to have sold over $23 million worth of dresses since it opened its doors.

Its buyers and sellers come from around the world, which makes your market reach a whole lot wider.

As a seller, you get to choose from two plans: standard (one-time $20 fee with 4 photos max and no more commission fees to pay when sold) or premium (one-time $30 fee with gallery feature on the Still White homepage and up to 8 photos max).

There are branded wedding dresses here, from Maggie Sottero to Vera Wang.

You can search by brand, color, size, and location of seller, among other filters.

  • HOW MUCH YOU EARN: Depends on how much you priced your wedding dress and what type of plan you chose.
  • PROS: You don’t have to pay any commission fees
  • CONS: Upfront fees are high

Sell wedding dress online

3. Wore It Once

It looks like Etsy, but is focused on buying and selling used wedding dresses, shoes, jewelry, or other clothing.

Sellers can create their own custom shop, so you can add everything related to your wedding.

You only have to pay a one-time $20 setup fee, then list as many products in your shop. These listings don’t expire either and you can set your own price.

  • PROS: No limits to items you can sell
  • CONS: Payments are made through PayPal and transactions go directly between buyer and seller. Wore It Once isn’t involved except as a platform.

4. PreOwned Wedding Dresses

Like Still White, the website accommodates buyers and sellers from all over the world, and focuses exclusively on second hand wedding dresses, shoes and accessories.

You can also sell items from your bridal party, so bridesmaid dresses, mother-of-the-bride, flower girls’ dresses can also be put up for sale.

For a flat fee of $25, you can negotiate pricing with buyers directly. There’s no more commissions on the sale of your wedding dress.

PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com has been around since 2004, so you know you’re dealing with a legitimate company.

Plus, their history puts them at the top of search engine rankings, which means your items have a bigger audience and chance of getting sold. The site even claims to have an average sell time of 70 days.

5. Sell My Wedding Dress

This website offers three ways to sell wedding dress:

  • Basic ($19.97 one-time) – 5 ads active until sold with 5 photo uploads. Each listing has a corresponding fee ($19.97 for a wedding dress, $9.97 each for bridesmaid dress, and so on).
  • Premium ($29.97 one-time) – 10 ads active until sold with 10 photo uploads. Each listing has a corresponding fee ($29.97 for a wedding dress, $10.97 each for bridesmaid dress, and so on).
  • Business ($99.97/year) – 1 year subscription with up to 15 ads and 15 photo uploads. Included in the subscription are fees for a wedding dress, bridesmaid dresses, flower girl dresses, shoes and wedding accessories.

You have total control over the listing price.

You’ll be responsible for writing out the description, such as brand, size, color, style, and so on.

  • PROS: No commissions to pay, No hidden costs
  • CONS: Steep fees for premium and business plans

6 Once Wed

What’s great about wedding resources like Once Wed is that brides and grooms are still in the planning phase and could easily check out the online marketplace if they’re looking for second-hand wedding dresses or other wedding-related items.

You can list a wedding dress for $19.95 and $5 per additional item, which will be valid for a year.

  • PROS: No commissions, over 10 years in the industry
  • CONS: Separate listing fees can add if you’re selling to multiple items

7. Poshmark

Poshmark is an app where you can sell your wedding dress and other clothing, shoes and accessories (even those not related to your wedding).

Just click “sell” and follow the instructions. You put details of each item, upload photos, and finalize your listing. You then wait for people to buy your items.

Poshmark gets a 20% cut on items over $15, while a flat rate of $2.95 for any item below $15. You only pay Poshmark fees once you stuff gets sold.

If you’re interested in selling apps, I’ve written an extensive Poshmark review recently. Check it out here.

  • PROS: Very easy to use
  • CONS: High fees

Other resources you could check include:

  • Wedding Bee– a forum focused in the wedding industry. This link leads you to a section where people buy and sell used or never-worn wedding dresses.
  • Tradesy – A general online marketplace for designer clothing and other goods. There are no up-selling fees here, but you’d have to pay 19.8% commission.

How to Sell a Wedding Dress Locally

If you want to handle everything and even meet the buyer in person, you can sell your wedding dress locally, too!

Wedding Dress Consignment

For a hands-off approach, find a wedding dress consignment shop in town.

With this route, your wedding dress will be evaluated for quality and price, then if you give your go signal, the shop will sell the dress in your behalf.

The problem with consignment shops is that they tend to charge super-high commission fees (often up to 50%) of the finale sale price of your dress.

I recommend to only go this route if you’re in a hurry to sell, but have no time to find a buyer on your own.

If you’re not rushing, choose either Craigslist or Facebook.

Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace

Craigslist continues to be a contender in the online buy-and-sell space, even if there are tons of selling apps available these days. The reason for this is Craigslist’s undisputed way of targeting buyers by town, city, state, and so on. Plus, it’s free to list items as much as you want.

You do need to be flexible with pricing, since Craigslist is a place where buyers haggle freely.

If someone tries to buy your wedding dress and decide to meet up, keep yourself safe by choosing a public place with a lot of people, and get someone to accompany you.

Facebook is more modern, but works mostly like Craigslist since it’s up to you and the buyer to negotiate with price, discuss how to receive the wedding dress and so on. You do have to be more aggressive in spreading news about your wedding dress for sale on Facebook Buy and Sell groups, Facebook Marketplace, or even on your own profile.

You can search for very-specific Facebook groups, such as “2020 Florida brides,” “Miami wedding planners,” “Buy and Sell Wedding/formal dress in ____” specifying a location and so on.

It’s free to post items on Facebook, and if you don’t want to go to groups, you can list the dress on Marketplace and spend some advertising money to target potential buyers.

Facebook lets you choose demographics when you “boost a post” so it’s possible to choose local buyers exclusively.

Price to Sell Your Wedding Dress

Tradesy.com founder/CEO Tracy Dinunzio visited TODAY and made a useful explanation about pricing your preloved wedding dress.

She explains that wedding gowns 3-years-old or less can still be sold for 50% its retail price.

Those with branded names like Monique Lhullier or Vera Wang could sell up to 70% its retail price.

If your wedding dress was never worn and remains in pristine condition, it is usually easier to sell it for up to 80%-90% its retail value. Just skip the consignment shop route if you wish to earn back as much cash as you’ve invested on it.

Of course, it would still depend on how much wiggle room you’re willing to give with price, and how quickly you want to “giveaway” your wedding dress.

If you’re not ready to part with your wedding dress, but you’d like to get some of the cash back, why not try to rent it out?

Video Game Writing Jobs: From Scripts to Game Reviews

If you have a knack for writing on top of having a genuine love for all things video games, I’m sure you’d love these two super-niche video game writing jobs.

2018 was a record-breaking year for the gaming industry with a whopping $43.4 billion in total video game sales.

The video games market is expected to be worth over 90 billion U.S. dollars by 2020.

And if you’re one of the 164 million+ adults playing video games in the United States, you’re already somewhat qualified.

Two Types of Video Game Writing Jobs

Many writers would agree that as much as there are different kinds of writing jobs out there both online and IRL, there are also different writing specializations to fit anyone’s skill.

If you dig into the writing careers available in the video game industry, you’d see that the opportunities are mostly divided into two:

  • Script writing is involved in the video game development itself. These writers are awesome storytellers and would excel in adding words, stories, expressions to 3D graphics of the game.
  • The other kind of career is at the other fence: the gamer. As a gamer who is also good at writing to inform, entertain, teach, or guide other gamers of the newest games worthy of playing, this career path can be either office-based or work-from-home. (We’ll talk more about this later.)

Both types of writing would require you to play as many video games as you can.

You need to be passionate about the industry to perform the job well.

Script Writing: Making Graphics Richer with Stories

John Dennis, who has worked in the game industry over 20 years on massive hits like Worms and Call of Duty, spilled the beans that you have two ways to get involved in video game development as a script writer:

1. It was your idea – You came up with the story, plots, and everything in between.

This route is rare, but does happen once in a blue moon if you’re equipped with the best idea for a video game.

If you’re going with this route, know that undergoing this process isn’t for the faint of heart and would push you to your limits.

But being able to work through a game from start to finish is an experience worth having if you’re serious about making a dent in the gaming industry.

2. You are part of a team – If you’re hired to write speeches and sequences, a game director would probably be leading you how to complete the project and guide you every step of the way.

Unless you land a job with a company that creates video games exclusively, you’re most likely going to work on a particular game on a per-project basis.

What tools do you need for video game script writing?

Story-based games can be exceptionally complicated with infinite possibilities of script, depending on what the gamer chooses in the game.

  • Understanding how strings work. Script writing a video game isn’t like any kind of writing. You’d have to collaborate with multiple talented people when writing a “text snippet,” or what game programmers know as “string.” This string is saved in a text database, which everyone from designer, coder, writer, and even video game testers will use to perfect the game.
  • Knowing the ins and outs of game play. As a gamer, you know the strengths and weaknesses of your player. You know that the options given to your player, usually as “goals” or “missions”, are what leads you to the plot of a story. This type of skill cannot be learned by the book – you’d need background experience from years-worth of gaming to be able to get the point of a story across with the player and game mechanics in mind.
  • Practice with tools. Sites like Twine or Inform are great resources for you to use when practicing how to write creative non-linear fiction. There’s also an app called Episode that brings your story to life with ready-made graphics.
  • Learn the types of video game content you’ll write. You’re going to be training yourself with new ways of writing. For example:
    • Flowcharts – These make it easy for you to visualize every possible option allowed to the player.
    • Side quests/missions – This is beyond the main story, and may be a totally different story altogether.
    • Character dialogues – You’ll work on the player dialogues (which would have multiple variations at a time) and dialogues of characters the player will interact with in the game.
    • Narrations and cut scenes – These sequences are often inserted before, and after a level, or a mission.
    • Final storyboard: If you have background with scriptwriting in films and TV shows, this is probably the most familiar task you’ll work on. This is only written once all other content has been created, since it will include every plot twist and gameplay from beginning to end.

How Much Can You Earn as a Video Game Scriptwriter?

If employed with just one company, the average video game writer salary is $75,000 to 80,000 per year.

Of course, studios with higher budgets tend to pay higher than average.

Writing Previews, Reviews & News about Video Games

The other type of video game writing jobs is available from outside the game production companies.

Think contributors to Gamespot, 1Up, Polygon or other gaming sites like them.

Most of the time, these writers are gamers themselves, which make them quite the pro when it comes to writing about video games.

Here are writing gigs that you might be interested in:

Write news and previews about upcoming video games

Use your writing skill to spread news about soon-to-be-released video games.

No opinions needed here yet, so just pull out your 4Ws and 1H (who, what, where, why and how), reporting news as they come as is.

Write reviews of recently-released video games

Reviews are more personal.

You’d have to play the video game, experience the story first-hand before you can pinpoint the strengths and weaknesses of a particular game.

There’s a special kind of writing skill to become a critic. Google the late, great John Peter Bain or more known as ‘TotalBiscuit’ to know if you got what it takes to become a video game reviewer.

Write tutorials about a particular video game

Game tutorials are challenging to write because you’d have to be a phenomenal gamer, or involved in the production of that game to be able to release a tutorial quickly after the release of a game.

If you’re not in a rush and prefer to write “the go-to tutorial of all tutorials,” then it’s totally up to you.

Get hired or Be Freelance

The cool thing about writing previews, news, reviews and tutorials of a game is that you can be your own boss by starting a blog and generating income from it, starting your own YouTube channel, writing an e-book, and following other passive income generating techniques….

Or you can find an online magazine like Gamespot and apply to become a video game writer.

You’d be surprised just how many websites are trying to get a piece of the gaming industry reporting pie.

If you land a job with any of these gaming media, expect an average salary of $70,000 per year.

Expanding Your Skill Beyond Video Game Writing Jobs

The video game designer job market is expected to grow by 9.3% between 2016 and 2026. Just imagine how many games are scheduled to be developed, released and played from now until 2026.

The amazing thing about writing for the video game industry is that they are open to people wearing multiple hats, especially those wanting to make money playing video games.

A game designer can be the scriptwriter, the script writer can be a game programmer, and so on. If you’re already a part of the industry, why not learn other skills as well?

Not only will expanding your skill set help you become an inch closer to a video game director job (if you wanted to), you’re also increasing your value to an employer.

Combine your passion for writing with a live stream, and you’ve got an excellent way to make money on Twitch as well.

Get Paid to Do ASMR Videos: How to Turn Sounds into Cash

Whether you find it soothing or creepy, people are getting paid to make ASMR videos on YouTube.

You know these videos – they’re people whispering on screen, eating loudly, doing a ton of noises, sounds, tones, and other activities to help other people relax.

ASMR videos are part of an interesting phenomenon.

ASMR artists are part of a growing online community of people that make pleasurable sounds either live or pre-recorded in hopes of reaching a person who might find those particular sounds relaxing.

Those videos may seem boring to anyone not familiar with ASMR, but to an entire population of people sensitive to these triggers, it can mean hours-long of genuine relaxation.

What is ASMR, exactly?

ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) is a term that was coined in 2010. It refers to the relaxing sensation a person feels from the scalp, crawling to the spine and down the body.

ASMR has been described as ” mild electrical current” or chills people get when someone whispers into their ear or plays with their hair.

ASMR is triggered by numerous auditory and visual things, including specific hand movements, loud chewing/crunching noise, nail tapping, rubbing fabric and whispering, among others.

Many people feel that watching ASMR videos is deeply relaxing. (Check Google Trends and the term “ASMR sleep” consistently ranks high around sleeping time regardless of country of origin). Pretty cool, right?

Renowned painter and iconic artist Bob Ross, more specifically his soft dulcet-toned voice, has been regarded an ASMR trigger.

Those who discover Bob Ross only recently feel that the reason for his popularity is how Bob’s voice made people deeply relaxed.

How does ASMR work?

You either have ASMR, or you don’t.

This means if you watch a trigger like crinkling paper and you do not have experience a tingling sensation because of it, it simply means your body didn’t react to this particular trigger (and probably opt out of the video).

In some cases, you can still discover a specific trigger that lets you experience ASMR.

Sometimes you never do.

Contrary to what others may think, ASMR isn’t ALL sexual.

However, this doesn’t mean a person watching ASMR cannot get turned on.

Heck, there’s a sub-niche of ASMR devoted completely to sexual ASMR.

Watching ASMR videos is a slippery slope.

This is because the tingling sensation felt (or ASMR) varies from one person to the next. A person may get turned on by watching someone stirring a bowl of soup today, and feel completely different about that same ASMR video tomorrow.

And since there’s very little science behind ASMR, what we know about this sensation and the triggers behind it come from those who watch and those who get paid to do ASMR videos.

Highest Paid ASMR Artists and Their Work

As you can see, ASMR isn’t exactly an easy topic to explain. But to give you an idea how many people get paid to do ASMR videos these days, here are 6 examples:

1. SAS-ASMR

  • Specialty: ASMR with Mukbang (Korean words for “eating” and “broadcasting”)
  • Subscribers: 7.6 million (from April 2016 to present)
  • Income: She reportedly has a net worth of $7.5 million and earns about $120,000 a month

On this video, she eats all of the most popular foods from her channel – honeycomb, aloe vera, seagrapes, and octopus – in one go with her trademark extremely loud chewing, crunching and gulping sounds.

2. Makenna K Kelly (of Life with MaK)

  • Specialty: She does role-plays and a ton of whispering
  • Subscribers: 1.6 million (from November 2017 to present)
  • Income: The teen earns a whopping $1,000 a day from her ASMR videos

As the youngest popular ASMR YouTuber (she’s only 14 as of 2019), her channel is highly controversial and the continuous flagging means YouTube takes her content down more often as she’d hope.

For example, her video role-playing a first class flight attendant has been viewed about 3 million times. Her mom tries to protect Makenna by blocking comments on YouTube, but this doesn’t stop bloggers and other YouTubers from poking fun of the teen’s ASMR videos.

3. Maria Viktorovna (of Gentle Whispering channel)

  • Specialty: natural sleep aid videos
  • Subscribers: 1.7 million (from 2011 to present)
  • Income: Maria earns a whopping $130,000 a year from YouTube alone.

On this particular video, she taps her face, “taps” the viewers face, talks to her viewers in a whisper and smiles every now and then.

4. Taylor Darling (of ASMR Darling)

  • Specialty: known for her affirmation, compliments, face touching, hair brushing, hair play and ASMR makeup videos
  • Subscribers:4 million (from 2014 to present)
  • Income: Earns around $12,000 a month with a net worth of $1m as of 2019

Darling is truly adorable and wholesome. On this video, she explains 20 triggers that can help people sleep or happy.

5. Gibi ASMR

  • Specialty: cosplay, makeup ASMR, role-playing and whispering
  • Subscribers:2 million (from June 2016 to present)
  • Income: Has an estimate net worth of $1.5m as of 2019

Of all the ASMR explanation videos, Gibi’s video is probably the most entertaining.

Other examples of ASMR artists on YouTube:

Even celebrities like Eva Longoria is aware (and took a crack at ASMR) for W Magazine.

5 Ways to Get Paid to do ASMR Videos

Now that you understand the whole picture of ASMR and if you’re lucky enough to have found your triggers quickly, are you interested in becoming an ASMR artist?

If you answered “yes,” here are 5 ways ASMR artists get to earn from their content:

1. Create videos for YouTube

Many ASMR artists have called YouTube home since starting their ASMR channels. As long as the content remains clean (not sensual in nature), you’ll be find earning from YouTube ads. Learn more about YouTube monetization here.

If you prefer to create adult content (sexual ASMR), you’re going to be flagged on YouTube for sure. TwitchTV would be a better platform for you.

2. Live stream on Twitch

TwitchTV is massive in the online gaming/livestreaming world, but there’s no reason not to try your luck here if you’d like to showcase ASMR trigger live.

MaryJLeeee’s TwitchTV features her in sexy costumes, but her live-streamed ASMR is pretty wholesome (except of course when she does “mic licking” to make listeners feel their ears being licked).

MaryJLeeee details how she tries to keep it clean so she’d be taken seriously as a professional that helps with mental healing, but argues that other ASMR like Amouranth (who embraces her sex appeal on her ASMR channel) makes it hard to do so.

Whether you keep it clean or not, TwitchTV gives you more control over the money you can potentially earn.

You have ad revenues like YouTube, donations, subscriptions, paid livestreams, gifts, and other monetization.

Visit my TwitchTV guide if you want to check out this platform.

3. Setup a Patreon Account

YouTube and TwitchTV is where you upload your ASMR videos directly.

Meanwhile, Patreon complements you chosen platform.

If you wish to talk to your fans directly and offer perks in exchange for paid subscription tiers, this is the way to go.

4. Solicit Donations

There are several ways you can ask donations from your followers.

Some ASMR artists like Life with MaK leaves a link to her PayPal, so fans could send donations directly. Others include donation buttons on Patreon or TwitchTV.

Adding a donation button is perfect for supporters who prefer to have some control on the amount they wish to give. This is particularly true for TwitchTV and Patreon “plans” (with corresponding amount) that the ASMR artist already made in advance.

5. Get Sponsored

This monetization option is mostly reserved for ASMR artists who have millions of followers.

This is because brands would want to spread news about its products with the biggest audience they could find within their niche.

So if brands like Revlon or MAC want to enter the ASMR world, they’d probably look into artists who create makeup ASMR with a significant number of followers.

The Future of Getting Paid for ASMR

Even at its peak, ASMR has remained popular only within subset of people on the internet.

But it’s slowly growing and reaching mainstream.

In fact, at the Super Bowl 2019, Michelob Ultra ran an ASMR-triggering ad featuring Zoë Kravitz whispering into two microphones, playing with the beer bottle and pouring a glass altogether. It’s a pretty ballsy move, especially since Super Bowl traditionally feature big, loud and attention-grabbing ads.

However, only half of those 100 million viewers during Super Bowl “get” the ad. It divided the internet completely.

ASMR will always be misunderstood, since not everyone is sensitive to ASMR.

That is, of course, until more science can explain why some people are triggered by different visual and auditory cues (and some do not).

But it shouldn’t stop you from discovering your triggers and sharing them to the world, while you get paid to do ASMR videos.

How Ordinary People Make Money with Patreon

Patreon is a crowd-funding membership platform, which means you can make money with Patreon if people like you enough to pay and subscribe to your channel in order to access your content.

Compared to how many people earn money from YouTube, Patreon is a bit underrated.

However, it is one of the most highest-paying platforms for the creative crowd online.

There are over 100,000 creators on Patreon with the top-tier earning salaries of $2 million monthly (or more).

These “creators” are anyone from Youtubers to writers, musicians, podcasters, comic artists, videographers, online gamers, and other creatives with interesting skills to share to the world.

How Does Patreon Work?

Many YouTube stars embraced YouTube and Patreon equally.

But the original way people earned money through YouTube was via AdSense.

A viewer must watch an ad for 30 seconds, or click the ad featured before or somewhere in the middle of a YouTuber’s video. Only then will the YouTuber earn money.

However, it isn’t as simple as that. It would take about 1,000 views for a YouTuber to earn $10 to $20.

Unless a YouTuber’s channel has millions of viewers, earning through YouTube’s AdSense would take a lot of time, effort and videos.

To complement this income generation, many YouTubers took to Patreon and made it their second home.

There, musicians, singers, painters, gamers, and other creators were able to dictate subscription fees in exchange for VIP-style access to their work.

Several types of fan support at Patreon exist:

  • Monthly subscription – Fans of a creator pay a monthly subscription fee in exchange for freebies and insider news (sometimes being first to listen to a new song, asked opinions about a new comic character, and so on).
  • Per-campaign – Let’s say an independent ukulele player wants to release a new album, but has no funds to do so. She then creates a campaign on Patreon specifically for this project. Fans can support this album one-off without having to pay a monthly subscription fee.
  • Donation – If you’re a fan and you donate money to a creator you like, you’re in control of how much you want to give, and when you want to send your donation. You don’t need to be a paying subscriber or a support of a campaign to donate. The catch is that donations often do not include freebies. Of course this isn’t set in stone, since the creator can still send gifts your way as a donor.

You might think: why go to Patreon, if YouTube is already the biggest video-sharing platform on the planet?

Here are several reasons why…

Patreon vs. YouTube Channel Membership

  • Patreon filled a void – At the time of Patreon’s launch in 2013, YouTube has not yet launched its own Channel Membership program (this came out in mid-2018). Those who have started out at Patreon’s membership service stuck with it even after YouTube’s launch.
  • Patreon only takes 5% cut – Patreon is still a service, so it charges its users for using the platform by taking 5% of the membership fees. Compared to YouTube’s massive 30% cut, Patreon is more friendly to its users.
  • Patreon’s terms do not change drastically – Google, the mother company of YouTube, is notorious for updating its terms regularly. These terms include changes with monetization, which can be off-putting to YouTubers.
  • No minimum patrons required – At Patreon, there were no requirements regarding the number of patrons upon sign-up. With YouTube’s Channel Membership, your channel had to have at least 100,000 subscribers.

When it comes to pledges of supporters, Patreon and YouTube have similar starting points.

Fans pay $1.99/month at YouTube Channel Membership, while Patreon supports pay starting from $1/month.

How Much Can You Earn With Patreon?

It has been proven that you can make money with Patreon, but there is no standard income to be made.

However, it’s just impossible to state an estimate revenue you can get from Patreon mainly because the number of supporters you have is different to other Patreon users.

These are just some examples of top Patreon creators making bank on the platform:

  • Chapo Trap House (Earns $95,000/month with over 21,000 patrons)Political comedy podcast by hosts Matt Christman, Will Menaker, Virgil Texas, Felix Biederman, and Ambe A’Lee Frost.
  • Jordan B Peterson (Earns $75,000/month with his 8k patrons) – Former Harvard professor discussing psychology
  • Amanda Palmer (Earns $55,000/month with over 11,000 patrons) – Singer, musician and blogger.
  • Philip DeFranco (Earns $50,000/month with over 14,000 patrons) Maintains his own YouTube-based news network with 6 tiers ranging from $5 to $1000.
  • AvE (Earns $44,000/month with over 12,000 patrons) This YouTuber is known for his tech-focused videos explained in layman terms. Its Patreon has only two tiers – $2 and $5, both of which get access to content a week early.
  • Sword and Scale (Earns $34,000/month with over 10,000 patrons) Now in its 145th episode, Sword and Scale is a true crime podcast.

As you can see from these creators, you can definitely make money with Patreon as long as you have followers (or in this case: “patrons”).

As a creator, you will dictate the tiers (membership levels) and their corresponding benefits per-tier.

You can add multiple tiers, as well as multiple benefits. And choose if you’d like to include tangible items like t-shirts, stickers, CDs, etc. or digital items like access to a livestream video or copy of an unreleased song.

Who Can Make Money with Patreon?

Anyone can open up a Patreon account.

However, once you begin earning money from the subscriptions, Patreon gets a cut from your monthly income.

The percentage will depend on what type of Patreon plan you chose: Lite (5%), Pro (8%), and Premium (12%).

The pricier the Patreon plan you choose, the bigger add-ons you get such as analytics, accounts for team members, dedicated manager, and so on.

If you’re planning to join Patreon, but is not sure if you’d fit in, you’d be surprised at the impressive roster of Patreon users there are.

To give you an idea, here are real Patreon users and how they’re using this platform to earn money online:

1. Podcasters

We know crowd funding is a legitimate way of earning from podcasts, but forgot to include Patreon into the list when discussing podcasting as a business.

You don’t need to be a professor, public speaker, or celebrity to create a podcast. As long as you’re creative, smart, and entertaining enough, people will naturally follow you.

Aside from the Chapo Trap House, The Last Podcast on the Left is a favorite podcast hosted by friends Ben Kissel, Marcus Parks, and Henry Zebrowski.

Since 2011, these guys have been releasing 1-hour podcasts about the horrors of the world both imagined and real – think zombies, serial killers, and so on. While Zebrowski is a comedian on his own right, his co-hosts mostly found massive fame through the podcast.

2. Teaching and Education

There is massive potential to teaching at Patreon.

From musicians creating music lessons for their patrons, to people learning how to speak English from ESL natives…and everything else in between.

You’d find essay writing lessons, painting courses, gospel music, and many more.

3. Musicians

Singers and musicians are big at Patreon.

A cappella groups Pentatonix and Home Free are perfect examples of music acts that opened their world to patrons, which ultimately helped them create music, tour more places, and produce music videos.

If you’re trying to learn guitar, you can find many expert guitarists sharing their knowledge at Patreon.

You just gotta dig deeper and learn how other musicians take care of their patrons.

4. Video Creators

These group of creators bring a wide range of content to the world.

Some share educational videos like cooking or experiments, while others stick with pranks, family funny videos, and so on.

5. Visual Artists

The internet threatened traditionally-beloved professions like comic book artists and other similar fields.

But the technology, tools like drawing tablets and software, and services like Patreon paved the way for visual artists to make money online.

Today, exceptionally-talented artists like Brian Gordon (of Fowl Language) and Nick Seluk (of The Awkward Yeti) are able to do what they love the most and earn a living from their comics too!

Thanks, in part, of their fans who helped bring money to the artists by buying their merch, joining Kickstarter campaigns, or subscribing to their Patreon.

6. Writers

The cool thing about Patreon is that creators can offer their content in phases, which is ideal for authors working on their novels.

They are “paid” as they go.

Journalists also have a nice little home here, especially those with very specific niches.

For instance, NASCAR writer Jeff Gluck is a fan of Patreon because it has given him “the freedom to cover what I want, how I want, when I want.”

7. Gamers

Video game creators join Patreon and release updates and sneak-peaks to fans of their games.

Some go as far as asking its patrons to help shoulder the game development bill.

Watching online gamers do their thing (and narrate what their characters are doing on screen) has been around for several years and who wouldn’t want to get paid to play video games?

It’s no wonder these popular names from the gaming industry are using Patreon to share more content in exchange for income from monthly subscriptions.

8. Communities and Organizations

Of course, organizations (whether private or non-profit) and communities can turn Patreon into their go-to fundraising headquarters.

Patreon was made exactly to unite a community of people into one (or more) goals.

The Secret to Make Money with Patreon

If you look at the highest-earning Patreon top creators, you’ll understand that they all have one thing in common – all of them have a significant following (people who financially supports their work).

Without supporters, it’s difficult to make money with Patreon.