Are you looking for more creative ways to make money, but you’re not sure where to start? Well, you actually already have an invaluable resource at your disposal: your friends.
Your friends, when it comes down to it, are the core of your business network. What’s more, they can help you make more money.
Here are a few unique ways to make money from your friends.
1. Just ask
If you’re searching for creative ways to make money, you don’t have to rely solely on job boards. Instead, your friends can help you get where you need to go.
Your group of friends is such a powerful part of your network. Your friends already know you, your work, and your skills, so they can vouch for you. If you want additional work or want to start a side hustle, hit up your friends first.
It may seem weird, but your friends will want to help. They’re not mind-readers either, so be sure to speak up and ask your friends for any work referrals.
My freelance career pretty much started because of one of my friend’s referrals. She quit freelancing to start a full-time job, but she still had access to a vast freelancing network. Thanks to a couple of emails she sent, along with a few a good words about me, I suddenly had three more clients.
I’ve also secured pet-sitting gigs from friends, received brand ambassador opportunities from peers who needed someone to cover last minute and more.
Let your friends know that you’re looking for extra work and, most importantly, tell them what you’re available to do.
2. Sharing is caring
Looking for creative ways to make money with minimal work? In the sharing economy, it can literally pay to share.
Many of the sharing economy apps and services offer incentives for you to share your unique promo code with your friends. This can help you earn you some extra money, and help your friends save or find new services they’ll like.
One of my favorite apps is Postmates, an on-demand food delivery service. Although it gets expensive with delivery fees, you can share your promo code and earn money toward deliveries too.
I’ve shared my unique Postmates code with all of my friends and posted it on coupon sharing sites CouponFollow and Dealspotr. This resulted in over $300 in delivery credit. In other words, I won’t need to pay for deliveries for a while.
You don’t want to needlessly spam your friends with your share codes. But, if it’s appropriate, you can share your favorite resources with your friends and earn some money on the side.
3. Refer your friends
So you already know that you can ask your friends to hook you up with additional work. But did you know that it’s possible to make money by referring your friends to work? It’s absolutely one of the best unique ways to make money.
I remember a few years ago I had referred a friend of mine to a couple of new clients. They got more work and, a few days later, they sent over some money. I was confused and followed-up.
He said he felt I should get a cut of his initial earnings because it was my referral that got him the job. I was shocked! I was doing something that I’d do anyway out of the goodness of my heart. But here I was making a few extra bucks without even trying.
Ever since then, I’ve created strategic relationships with some people, and giving out referrals has been one of the most creative ways to make money. If I refer them for a freelance job that I’m not a good fit for, I can get a 15 percent cut of their earnings.
While this is applicable to freelancers and small business owners, it’s also possible in the corporate world as well.
Jim Wang, founder of Wallet Hacks says, “If your employer has an employee referral plan, you could get paid thousands of dollars if a friend can fill a need.”
Of course, you want to make sure that your referral is actually a good fit, or you’ll risk your reputation getting tarnished. But if you know someone that is a good fit for an opportunity, you could get a referral bonus for simply making connections.
4. A testimonial that seals the deal
If you’re looking for a job and do well at an interview, typically an employer will want personal and professional references. Having a good friend that can share a testimony of your work can help seal the deal and get you the job.
If your friend is somehow connected to the place you are applying to for employment, even better. Having someone that can vouch for you can mean more than you realize.
Almost all of my friends have gotten their current employment opportunities because of a friend that provided a testimony or recommendation.
5. The gift of giving
If you are curious about unique ways to make money, follow the adage ‘give and you shall receive’. Friends often help each other and don’t expect anything in return for it.
I’ve often helped out friends when they asked for support — with moving, giving rides, reviewing cover letters, etc. As a friend, I want to help out in any way I can.
To my surprise, in return for my help, I’ve received unexpected compensation in the form of money and gift cards. Sometimes, when you give without expecting anything in return, you get rewarded anyway.
Get started with these creative ways to make money
If you’re looking for creative ways to make money, start with your friends first. They can help you earn more money and bypass annoying job applications, low-paying job boards, and connect you to the right people.
You don’t need to send out a million resumes, or take any side job you can get. You can simply use your best asset — your friends — to score your next gig. Relationships are a form of currency, and when done right, they can make you rich in a number of ways.
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