“The world doesn’t care what you know. What the world cares about is what you do with what you know.” – Tony Wagner, Creating Innovators

A side hustle is different from starting a business in that it gives you the flexibility to test your ideas while you still have a regular job. It doesn’t require huge initial investment and can be done with your current skill set.

Even if you are just looking for a conventional job working for an fun and innovative company, a side hustle shows a potential employer that you have the initiative and know-how to get things done. Everyone has ideas but ideas only become valuable through effective execution. You separate yourself from the pack and demonstrate leadership when you can execute your ideas in a manner that satisfies the needs or wants of others.

In the digital economy implementation of creative thinking is  everything. Routine blue collar and white collar work can now be outsourced or automated but social and creative intelligence are unlikely to be replaced by machines and algorithms.

According to the New York Times, employers care less about resumes and more about candidates being “relentlessly entrepreneurial”. In fact, creativity is now the #1 skill called for in today’s economy. According to a global survey of 1500 top executives conducted by IBM, creativity is the most important skill sought after in prospective leaders. 

To show that you are creative you need to launch your own side hustle(s). It could be a website that you use to build an audience, publishing an ebook or vlogging on YouTube.

Here are 10 examples of side hustles you can start right now and work toward turning into an online business:

1. Blogging or vlogging.

Start blogging (or even better, vlogging) about what inspires you and build an online audience by sharing your talent and experience. As your audience grows, you can productize your expertise by selling your own products.

2. Sell your own products or services.

Create and sell your own ebooks, online courses or coaching services through the Internet. It’s always good to have multiple streams of income and selling products and services online allows you to offer your expertise at different price points.

3. Become a digital freelancer.

Build your experience and your digital portfolio by freelancing on outsourcing platforms like Upwork. Becoming a freelancer can give you the flexibility to travel and work remotely abroad from co-working spaces.

4. Learn how to make apps.

Learn a high-paying skill like iOS development or Android development and start making your own apps. A skilled app developer can make more than $100,000 but the difficulty of learning how to code is high for most people.

5. Start your own niche affiliate website.

Create a niche website around a subject that you passionate about and use affiliate marketing to review and promote products and services that provide solutions to your audience’s needs.

6. Start your own ecommerce store.

Start your own e-commerce business on Shopify by selling products that you create or try drop-shipping your own branded “white-labelled” products on Amazon using the massive Ali Baba whole marketplace to find suppliers.

7. Crowdfund your next creative project.

Raise some money for one of your creative projects such as writing a book, launching a social change organization or producing a documentary film by crowdfunding it on Kickstarter or Indiegogo.

8. Become a digital marketing or social media consultant.

If you can help entrepreneurs grow their businesses, you will be indispensable. To thrive in the digital marketing industry today, you need a strong understanding of branding, visual storytelling using images and video on social media and sales funnels.

Not sure where to start? Join my Social Creators academy to start building your personal brand.

9. Become a freelance writer.

If you’re a good writer, it’s easy to offer your writing services to websites that interest you and do content freelancing on Freelancer. Keep in mind that to earn a good income from freelance writing you will need to learn copywriting techniques and SEO writing.

10. Become a local tour guide in your area.

Start a side hustle business as a tour guide on Viator or host your own events such as documentary screenings, mini-conferences or workshops. Or if you need ideas, read my guide to finding work in the gig economy.

If you don’t already have a side hustle, try one of these side hustles and start learning digital media skills while building your personal brand and a digital portfolio that shows you can get things done.