Tom is a 23 year old recent college graduate from Canada with a passion for side hustling, passive income, and marketing. This Online World is all about providing people with honest ways to make and save more money by using technology.
Tom provides some simple and easy ways to make extra money to pay off your debt faster. He has some great tips for making extra money online and in real life.
Welcome to the money mindset podcast, where you will find the inspiration and motivation you need to manage your money better so you can stress less and live the life you want. Actually with budgets mace easy in the money mindset podcast. Today we are going to be talking all about earning extra money easily and at home.
Just ways that creative ways that you can make some extra money so that you can pay off your debt a lot faster. So in order to get started on paying off your debt, you can get my free debt bundle. It's uh, forms and spreadsheets and worksheets to get started on your debt. Snowball. Good. A budget's made easy.com/debt-bundle. And today we are talking to Tom. He's a 23 year old recent college graduate from Canada with a passion for side hustling, passive income and marketing. So this online world is all about providing people with honest ways to make and save more money by using technology. So he has some really great ideas that you can do from home and you know, even some in rural areas, uh, you know, and things like that. So let's jump in to Tom's interview. Hey Tom, welcome. Thank you so much for joining us.
Hi Ashley. Thanks for having me on.
And before we jump in to different ways to make passive income and money online and all the things about, you know, making extra money so that you can pay off your debt. Uh, Tom, why don't you go ahead and just tell us a little bit about yourself.
Oh, absolutely. Uh, so yeah, I'm, I'm, my name's Tom, I'm a recent college grad. Uh, I went to school in Gwelf, which is a little town right outside of Toronto, Canada. Um, and I've been blogging for about almost two years now. And just, yeah, I have a pretty substantial interest in, uh, finding unique ways to make money online.
Yeah. And that's a question that I get asked a lot. You know, my audiences, a lot of moms and families and they, you know, they need to make extra money but they don't have a lot of time to make extra money. So finding something that they can do online, um, especially like passive income, you know, where you're not like actively trying to sell things and um, stuff like that is always a win. Um, you know, they, they want to pay off debt but they need to make some extra money to do that as well. So, um, what are some ways that, you know, somebody like that can make some extra money online without, you know, having to drag their kids to a babysitter and do all the things
right. Um, well I think the main thing to keep in mind, and this is kind of what I found, um, when I was in college and trying to make passive income or bits of income online, there's kind of two ways to go. I think a lot of the options out there, you can get started really quick. So you've probably seen a bloggers mentioned like survey apps or survey websites where you can answer surveys or even watch videos to earn bits of income and free gift cards. So that's actually how I got started. I stumbled across something on Reddit called phone farming back in the day. This was about, uh, two years ago. And the gist of it was, was using, um, a bunch of Android phones to watch videos on these reward apps. Um, and basically you would get these in-app credits that you could redeem and you'd get, you know, free Amazon gift cards or PayPal cash.
Um, and it was, it was a really slow earner. It probably made about $50 a month at its peak. Um, but you know, back in college, this was a pretty passive way for me to get some grocery money, um, or free Amazon stuff. Um, but this, the second way I think people generally go about passive income is they putting a lot of upfront work into something and then they kind of coast. Um, so whether that's blogging or starting an Etsy store and then outsourcing parts of it, uh, I think there's a bunch of options down that route. And ultimately I think it comes down to, yeah, do you need money in the next month or two or are you willing to kind of put in a bit of more upfront work and then have a longer term project?
[inaudible] so what are some of your like favorite ways to make extra money, even if it's not online? How, like how do you like to make extra money?
Um, so right now I'm doing a lot of freelance writing these days. Um, so outside of a nine to five job, I, you know, maybe once or twice a week I'll have a, a freelance article I have to complete. Um, I've definitely dabbled with a few other things. I've tried, uh, SEO consulting, which was, I work as a, a digital, um, campaign manager right now. So it was kind of a natural fit to go into, you know, a bit of extra work outside of a regular hours for some clients. So those are definitely the two. The two main, uh, side hustles I've been involved with lately, um, over the past year or so. Um, yeah,
so it's cut out a little bit. Uh, so what if somebody is wanting to do something like freelance writing? Cause that's a, you know, fairly simple way to earn some extra money. I've done it and I've also hired freelance writers as well. So you know, most people know how to write an article, a maybe not necessarily, um, in the same format as like a blog post, but it's super easy to learn. So what is, um, a way to kind of get started with just freelance writing? You know, how do you find clients
that's, Oh, that's a really solid question. I struggled with that, um, for a really long time. And I think that's probably the main hurdle I would say for freelancers. Um, I think there's a lot of, maybe not misinformation but, uh, over simple or over complex, I should say info out there. Um, when I was starting, I looked into a bunch of a freelance job portals. So even like websites, like indeed or LinkedIn or I think remotely is another one. I, I flex jobs, looked at a ton of them. Um, and after sending out about 30 to 40 cover letters and resumes and never hearing anything back, um, I honestly just turned to Twitter and Facebook, um, and, and joined a lot of blogging groups there. So, um, I'm, I'm interested in finance and that's what I primarily write about and I have a finance blog. So I joined those Facebook groups. I started networking and that's actually how I found my first two clients. Um, people reached out in the Facebook group. They said, Hey, I need someone to write an article or [inaudible] once a week or once a month. Um, and I just, I connected that way. So I think turning to your own network or even branching into social media and these, these kind of niche groups, um, is probably a faster route to finding a client. Then, you know, just sending out dozens and dozens of resumes.
[inaudible] I agree. That's how I've found my clients. Of course I, I've done it just kind of like I'm on the side like when I need some extra money for my business or for something specific. But yeah, I found all of my clients in Facebook groups, you know, people ask for, um, I need help with this. Do you recommend anybody? And you know, that's how I've found my virtual assistant as well. I asked in a group about finding a virtual assistant and she reached out to me and then we, you know, met online and all and got to know each other and then I hired her. So I think that's a great way to kind of network and get your face out there and get to know people and when they need help then you're there to help them.
Yeah. It's also a crazy, I mean I'm not, I'm not surprised you you've had the same success because even just looking at some of the people that are in these groups and their accomplishments or the online businesses they're running right now, it's kind of mind blowing. I mean, there's no second bestselling authors and multimillion business owners, those kinds of Facebook groups. And there's really no other way to get in contact with them except through those platforms. I think it's, it's pretty remarkable.
Yeah, absolutely. So it's almost like the new way to network as opposed to like you said, doing cover letters and sending, you know, all the things to businesses and things. It seems like everything's online now, that like Facebook groups and everything. That's how you find things. So, um, and now what if somebody doesn't want to do something like virtual assistant or freelance writing? Um, what are some other ways that they could make some extra money so that they can pay off their debt, you know, surveys, it, you know, it doesn't take much time, but you also, you know, you're not getting paid a whole lot either. So what are some other ways to kind of make some more extra?
Yeah, no, that's a great point. I mean, yeah, you can take the freebies or the quick route to cash, but I think you're right. If you want to pay off debt quickly, honestly, I think my advice would be to turn to something in the gig economy. Um, so by that I mean, and I don't mean, you know, just getting in your car and driving Uber or, uh, delivering food. It's, it's pretty crazy how, how many opportunities are out there now and how many new opportunities are coming out. Um, just with all of the apps and platforms out there. I mean, there's companies like Rover that will pay you to dog sit or, or take the dog for a walk. I know there's, um, there's one financial blogger out there I know, and his side hustle is, he charges, um, line scooters in his city. He lives in San Francisco and, uh, at Nike scoops up the, uh, the lime scooters, charges them and then brings them back out on the street.
And he, I think he clears $1,000 a month by doing that. And then, yeah, and on top of that, I have, I have a friend actually who, he lived downtown Toronto, which is quite an expensive city to live in, uh, in Canada. And he would just bike for door dash and Uber eats maybe twice a week or three times a week. Um, so he'd get exercise. He wasn't putting mileage on his car or anything like that. Um, and you could easily make, you know, a couple of hundred bucks a month doing something he enjoyed. He really liked cycling. Um, and yeah, no, pretty much no downside to it really. I mean at a few late nights if uh, he wanted a bar rush or a dinner rush, but um, yeah, there's so many, so many different apps and platforms out there now. I think that connect side hustlers, people who need a quick service.
Cool. Now you know, everybody's on their phone nowadays too and there's so many different apps. So do you have any recommendations for like apps where you can either make extra money or find jobs to make extra money? You know, are there like any survey apps or anything like that where you can just, you know, play on your phone and make a little money or find a job like Uber or something like that?
Right. Um, I know there, there's a few interesting ones. I know there are even apps like job spotter where if you're walking around and you see a for hire sign and you post it through job spotter, you can get a few bucks. Um, so again, anyone living in a big city that can easily be an extra 20 to $50 a month for practically nothing. Um, and then yeah, that was another cool, if you live in a small town, it's not really gonna do much, much good. But yeah, that, that was a neat one. Um, I think it's actually, uh, indeed.com, uh, partner or subsidiary. Um, so there's apps like that. And then I know there's other ones, I think Shopkick, you can be a secret shopper through that app or you scan things at grocery stores when you're there and you can make some extra money. Um, you're nothing will, you know, that'll break the bank. But if you're on your phone anyways, like you said, you might as well. Have you been in money?
Heck yeah. Now what about, do you have any ideas for people that aren't living in a big city? Like, even where I live, it's not really, I'm kinda ruled, but I'm close to everything. But like we barely have Uber that comes out here. Like I think there's like one person, Uber driver out here. So do you have any ideas for something like that, that, you know, not near a big city where the, the, where there's more options.
Right. So in that instance I would probably lean more towards online, online work, online side hustles. Um, just because you can connect to anyone if you really wanted to stay offline though, I know there are some platforms that do like peer to peer delivery. Um, so like I think citizenship is one and they're kind of similar to Amazon flex. And basically if you're traveling somewhere in the future and you know, you're going through a specific route, you can look on that platform and see, um, basically if somebody along your way needs a package from where you're coming from. Um, so that it can be international as well. I know it's called like a peer to peer shipping. There's a few companies that do it. Um, and essentially like if you were going to, let's say, Mexico for vacation, or if you were going across state and you were going, you know, or across the country, um, there's all kinds of people who will pay, you know, a lot of money for you to bring a package to them. Or I think there's even people who, you know, they'll adopt a dog, a few States up from them, and then they'll pay someone a few hundred dollars if they're passing by to, to bring the dog. It's, it's crazy. Yeah. Peer-to-peer shipping is pretty wonky. There's, there's a lot of weird weird requests like I need, yeah, I need a dog from, from Texas and I live all the way in, in Florida. But if you happen to come this way, you can bring the dog. It's a bit weird, but
it's kinda interesting. Like I had never even would have thought of that. So,
yeah. The internet is so strange that way. Yeah. I mean there's, I honestly believe you can make money doing almost anything these days.
It sounds like it. I mean, you've given us a lot of good ideas. So, uh, do you have any quick tips for somebody that is wanting to start an online job? Um, you know, like a blog or freelance writing or you know, something like that. Just some quick tips to somebody that isn't familiar with the space or how to even get started.
Sure. Um, I think the first thing would be not to stretch yourself too thin no matter what, what it is that you decide to go into. Um, one of the main mistakes I made with both freelance writing and blogging was to basically try to do everything all at once. Um, so when I started a blog, yeah. And I'm sure everyone encounters some, some degree of that, but I know when I started a blog it was okay, I need to be on every social platform every day. I need to write five articles a week, I need to do SEO for the site outreach, networking. And you ended up doing I think six things poorly instead of one to two things the right way. Um, so that, yeah, that would be [inaudible] I don't know if you relate cause I imagine having, um, you know, so many different businesses to run in a virtual assistant and everything, things probably get kind of crazy.
Oh yeah. It gets it. And I agree with you just like focus on one thing. Like I've been doing it not quite three years now, and I hired an assistant in July, I think it was with some of the things that were just taking up too much of my time that were important but important for me to do. Like somebody else could do it. So, um, but yet focusing on one thing that's gonna move the needle. I mean, and I say the same thing with budgeting and paying off debt. Just focus on one thing, do it well, and then move on to the next thing. So when you, like you said, when you try to do too many things at once, you're not doing any of them well, so exactly. Learn what, and you know what? Another thing that we'll mention is that I didn't do right away that I wish I would have was to spend money to do things faster.
Like I tried to, Oh my gosh, I tried to save money by trying to figure it out all on my own. I thought I could Google it and then I would get all the answers and I didn't need to pay for things. But it's not true. Like you will save yourself so much time, so much stress by just either paying for a course to just teach you so that you can just learn it and start getting to work or you know, getting a, I'm getting in the right groups, you know, getting the right mentorship. Like I hired a business coach this year and my business has is like five times what it was the last two years. And so just getting the right advice and the right tools and knowledge to help you, you will go quicker. You will just go so much faster. It's worth it. So don't try to be too cheap. Like,
it's funny, I mean like I, I, I went to college so I made the decision to pay for college. Um, and I, you know, I thought about it a lot but I, I didn't flinch. I kind of just decided to do it. But then yeah, I'll, I'll see a course out there for $40 or you know, a logo designer who wants to charge me 20 bucks or 50 bucks. And that used to just be agonizing for me. It's just funny. I mean some, I think we're used to paying for certain things or you know, our car payments or paying for groceries and those things become normal over time. But yeah, when you start a business you have to think of it as a business and you need to reinvest to grow. Um, yeah, it definitely takes some, I think the shift in mindset, I realized the same thing this year. I had never paid for anything and at the start of this year I started outsourcing Pinterest marketing and graphic design stuff. And it just saves me so much time cause I, I would take five times as long to do the same result.
Yeah, exactly. When you can just pay somebody that is an expert and knows what they're doing, it saves you time, it saves you stress and then you can focus on the bigger projects that are going to bring in more revenue or move your business even further. So that is really a good idea to think about when you are, when you get to the point where you can outsource. And so for those of you listening that are looking for, um, you know, a job like that, you know, virtual assistants learn Pinterest, learn Facebook and social media. Um, you're on it anyway. And so that, but there's a lot of, um, little things you have to know like what Facebook likes, what Facebook doesn't like, what Instagram likes, what they know like, and then, you know, just a little bit with Pinterest. But if you can focus on just one thing, like don't try and be an expert on Pinterest and Instagram and Facebook and Twitter, like all the things just focus on one, like just Pinterest, just Facebook and learn everything you can about it. Take a course on it or something like that. And you can make money online with other business owners, other bloggers. I mean there's a ton of bloggers out there that are willing to pay you to do it for them because it saves them time and energy and stress so they can work on bigger things. So yeah, just focus on one thing to learn and be an expert at it and then market yourself as such.
Yeah, that's great. I think you nailed it. The expert part is, is the key there because ultimately you're going to do a better job and you'll get a reputation for being an expert in one thing and you can also charge more.
Oh yeah, absolutely.
Yeah, that's, that's another thing I realized with, with freelance writing, um, I used to just be general, um, and the rates were pretty bad. And then as soon as I got into finance, um, it's easy. Your portfolio is more relevant because all of the content is in the same niche and then know you get referred to the same clients or clients in the same, same vertical. Uh, it, it just makes life easier.
Absolutely. And then you like, you're trusted with this information because I don't think even as a writer, sure you can Google things and kind of try and put the pieces together, the information together and post, but the, the writing that you do will be better when you are an expert in that topic. And then, you know, when you do that right, the same or similar things all the time, you'll be just be a better writer and so you can charge more. So, uh, do you have any last words of wisdom, like any other tips or advice for somebody that's wanting to make some extra money?
Uh, sure. I think my, my one tip would be to kind of get, you know, get something on the back burner and, you know, I've got an iron in the fire so to say, and really work on, on growing that. I think, um, and this is what I saw with a lot of my colleagues, I guess, you know, being a younger college student, um, it, it's easy to, you know, get an idea, get really inspired and then to drop everything in your life and to chase it. Well I think this can be good and there's definitely success stories out there. I think, you know, building a security net for yourself first and working on things on the side before making any kind of drastic life change is probably, probably works out a higher percentage of the time then, you know, quitting your job on Monday, getting a ticket to Thailand and you know, taking off for a, for a year. So I would say, yeah, if you're looking to build an online income, um, do it in your, in your spare time when you can and learn the ropes and you know, make sure you get a thorough understanding of, you know, how to network and how to brand yourself and how to properly market yourself and then yeah, slowly grow it over time. Um, I, I think the nature of online moneymaking has a bit of a bad rap. There's a lot of, you know, get rich quick schemes out there or
[inaudible] Oh my gosh, yes.
Yeah, it's definitely a, uh, the down there, the dark side of the industry I think. But in reality, most things worth doing, take a lot of time. Um, but as long as you're consistent and optimistic and you work hard, I think even in your spare time, a few hours a week, you can build a sizable online income and eventually even make the switch to doing something full time if that's what you want to do.
That's great advice. And I always ask people what their favorite nonfiction book is. Just, you know, self demote development and improving our lives and you know, moving the needle on our debt and managing money. Do you have a favorite book?
Um, that kind of, I guess a genre and then a favorite book? The genre is a bit nerdy. I anything history related I really love, yeah, I just, I think anything, you know from military history to reading biographies to, you know, bits about sport, famous sports athletes is always a way to feel pretty, you know, well, some of it's pretty inspiring. Um, so that's, that's one. And then in terms of a specific book, uh, I really liked the four hour work week. I know that's a popular one. Um, for people looking to transform their, their online income or income streams into one day, you know, having that mythical four hour work week, I'm not sure how, if four hours is really four hours, I'm sure it's more like 60 or 80 some weeks. But, um, but uh, that one, that one is definitely, you know, it inspired me a few years ago, so I do like that one.
Oh good. I have, I think I've heard of it, but I haven't read it. I, I hit sounds familiar, but I can't think of who, I can't even think of who writes it, but I feel like I've heard of it before.
It's um, Oh, hold on. Who's the, it's on the tip of my tongue. Um, it's Tim Ferris. That's why that was a lot of divide time. Yeah, I definitely recommend that if you ever, you know, look into, uh, to set some, some big goals and have a bit of a, a dream.
Awesome. Well thank you. So, Oh wait, where can people find you?
Oh, right. So, um, I have my blog if you want to check that out. So it's a, this online world.com. Uh, and then I'm on, I'm on Twitter and Facebook under the, the same username. Um, and that's, that's all I have for now. I have a Pinterest, but, uh, it's if you ask me not worth following.
Aw, I'm sure it's great. All right, well, thank you so much for talking with us today.
Well, thanks so much Ashley, for having me. It's been, it was a fun one. Thanks.
Thank you so much to Tom for giving us some really great ideas to get started on making some extra money, you know, especially with the end of the year coming and new year and just get started on crushing your debt. So in order to, you know, get you a good head, start on paying off your debt as well. Don't forget to go get the debt bundle the debt snowball, a worksheet and spreadsheet and checklist and everything you need to just get started. It's free, but a budget's made easy.com/debt-bundle and I will see you in the next step. Sewed.