In this article, we are looking at 5 Strategies for Building Connections When Starting a Side Hustle as part of our Side Hustle Tips series.
(PS: of course, if you are unsure where to begin, then check out this article on the 50 best side hustle ideas, right here in South Africa.)
Starting a side hustle is an excellent way to pursue your passions and earn extra income. However, building a network of connections and establishing yourself in your industry can be challenging, especially when you’re just starting. In this article, we’ll share five strategies for building connections when starting a side hustle.
However, before we get started, let’s ask the proverbial “elephant in the room” question first:
Is it even worth building connections when starting a side hustle?
Yes, building connections is worth it when starting a side hustle. Having a strong network of connections can help you grow your business by providing valuable insights, support, and opportunities for collaboration. By attending networking events, joining online communities, leveraging social media, collaborating with other entrepreneurs, and offering value to others, you can build a strong network of connections that can help you establish yourself as a valuable member of your industry and achieve success in your side hustle.
Great, now that we have that answer, let’s look at the 5 Strategies for Building Connections When Starting a Side Hustle.
Attend Networking Events for Building Connections When Starting a Side Hustle
Attending networking events is one of the most effective ways to meet other entrepreneurs, potential clients, and industry experts. Look for events in your industry or niche and make an effort to attend regularly. This will give you the opportunity to introduce yourself, exchange business cards, and learn from others.
I remember attending my first networking event as a freelance writer. I was nervous, but I knew I had to step out of my comfort zone to build my network. I ended up meeting several entrepreneurs who were looking for freelance writers, and I was able to secure some new clients as a result.
Join Online Communities for Building Connections When Starting a Side Hustle
In addition to attending networking events in person, it’s also important to join online communities related to your industry or niche. This can include Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups, and forums.
Participate in discussions, offer helpful advice, and share your own experiences. This will help you build relationships with other entrepreneurs and potential clients, and can also lead to valuable collaborations and partnerships.
When I started my own blog, I joined several online communities related to blogging and writing. I was able to connect with other bloggers and writers, learn new skills, and even collaborate on projects together.
Leverage Social Media
Social media is a powerful tool for building connections and promoting your side hustle. Start by creating profiles on the platforms where your target audience is most active. This could include Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.
Share updates about your business, post helpful tips and advice and engage with your followers. You can also use social media to connect with other entrepreneurs and potential clients by joining relevant groups and participating in Twitter chats or Instagram live sessions. Don’t forget to also use hashtags to increase your visibility and reach a wider audience.
As a freelance writer, I use Twitter to connect with other writers and potential clients. I often participate in Twitter chats related to writing and content marketing, which has led to several new clients.
Collaborate with Other Entrepreneurs
Collaborating with other entrepreneurs can be a great way to grow your side hustle. Look for opportunities to collaborate with others in your industry, whether it’s through joint projects, guest blogging, or cross-promotion on social media. Not only can this help you reach a wider audience, but it can also provide valuable insights and support from others who understand the challenges of starting a business. Attend networking events, join online communities, and reach out to other entrepreneurs directly to start building these relationships.
When I first started my freelance writing business, I collaborated with other freelance writers on a project for a client. It was a great learning experience, and it helped me establish myself as a reliable and skilled writer.
Offer Value to Others
Finally, one of the best ways to build connections when starting a side hustle is to offer value to others. This could mean sharing your expertise, providing helpful resources, or offering your services for free or at a discounted rate.
By demonstrating your skills and willingness to help others, you can build trust and establish yourself as a valuable member of your industry. This can lead to referrals, collaborations, and other opportunities to grow your business.
When I first started writing for a living, I offered to write guest blog posts for other bloggers for free. This helped me get my name out there, and I was able to secure new clients as a result.
Offering value to others is a great way to build your network and establish yourself as a trustworthy and knowledgeable member of your industry. By sharing your expertise, you can help others succeed while also positioning yourself as an authority in your field. This can lead to referrals, collaborations, and other opportunities to grow your business.