Most people have hobbies they pursue outside of work and studies. Some are very good at what they’re passionate about and some are still brushing up their talents. A lucky few, however, can make a killing with their hobbies. Here are some hobbies that can turn into excellent side incomes.
Digital cameras are hitting the shelves with fancier and fancier functions yet lower and lower prices. So it’s no wonder many have taken to photography as a hobby. High quality lenses and cameras further allow people to specialise in micro photography – taking pictures of super small objects, sports photography, for high speed action, or even underwater photography, for the diving enthusiast. When hobbyist photographers produce beautiful, high quality images, it is then possible for them to monetise their hobby as well. Photographer James Quah combines his passion for dance and photography to make a living with dance photography.
If you’re a natural born wordsmith, blogging, editing and writing makes good business sense. Many professionals have made a successful career freelancing outside of their chosen profession. Lawyers have contributed articles for law websites, health practitioners have written for health and medical journals and students have made a comfortable living blogging about their daily life. The richest bloggers in Asia make a tidy sum from advertising revenue due to their incredible audience reach. There are also bloggers who don’t do it for money but to further their reputation with their chosen profession. Either way, it’s not a bad way to use your talent in writing!
Shopping & Reviewing
Thanks to e-commerce, a whole breed of product reviewers have cropped up. Now, you can make a living just from reviewing products you bought online. On Amazon, top reviewers are often given free products or paid pure hard cash to try out, write and review products. They are paid well because these reviewers have a large following and getting a product reviewed by them often means getting much needed publicity and which then translates to product sales.
Shopping & Unboxing
Youtube has opened up a new business option for the avid shopper. A type of video content that has become popular on YouTube is ‘unboxing’ – it’s a video where a shopper films himself unwrapping a new purchase. This has created many ‘unboxing’ channels which has millions of subscribers and garners tens of millions of views per video. As crazy as it sounds, this viewership brings in up to hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue for the YouTube channel owner. In fact, the highest earning YouTuber makes up to USD5 million a year just from unboxing Disney toys.
The latest craze among women now is baking with 3D decoration. Just look up your Facebook and you are bound to see another housewife or hobbyist baker uploading another masterpiece they baked. Since cakes and cupcakes are in hot demand, more people have turned their passion for baking into lucrative hobbies. Sometimes the side business earns the baker enough for them to quit their day job and pursue it full time.
If you enjoy making crafts and are good at it, you can try selling them for a profit on an online marketplace for handmade items like Etsy. You don’t even have to create your craft from scratch. Etsy seller, Alicia Shaffer, reportedly made $1 million from embellishing accessories and selling them for a profit. If you are capable of making stuff from scratch, another option is to hold workshops and charge people to learn how to make handicraft like yours.
If you are an avid swimmer or tennis player, you can get a certification to teach your sport and make a cool income as a coach. The beauty about such a job is that you can make more per hour than you can with your day job. The best coaches can rack up the dollars quickly with group classes. The best part – coaching a sport only takes up a fraction of your time, since most people can only attend classes after school or work hours. So you’re free to pursue anything else the rest of the time.
There are many other hobbies you can turn into a side business or a lucrative career. Video gamers have made careers from playing video games or user testing video games, dance and clubbing enthusiasts have been paid to dance in clubs just so the clubs can draw in the cool crowd and foodies have made a living being food bloggers and reviewers.
The good news therefore is that whatever your passion, there is a way to make money from it. And what better way to spend your time than to pursue something you are passionate about!