Trade Time for Money

If you’ve listened to much information in the marketing field, you’ve constantly heard the phrase “Don’t trade time for money.”

Yet that’s not good advice when you’re first starting out. Of course that may be an end goal you should be thinking about and reaching for, but it isn’t where almost anyone starts out.

Almost everyone trades time for money in some way in the beginning.

For example, copywriters trade time for money. You pay them and they produce copy for you in exchange for an agreed amount. Some are cheap and some are expensive. You usually get what you pay for in this area (although it could be worth your time to pay a low cost copywriter and then improve it yourself).

Most copywriters I know work on other people’s projects, and they’re creating projects of their own. Yet even once their own projects pay off big time, they still take on a few clients. It’s what they enjoy doing.

You’ve seen in the past that I’ve recommended someone who needs to make quick money to become a local Internet consultant. That’s trading time for money as well. There are people in your local area area who don’t know anywhere near what you know about online marketing, and they’re willing to pay for your help.

All sorts of virtual assistants can help you run your internet business. Yet they’re trading their skills and time for money. In several cases I know, these virtual assistants are simply working part-time for others to “pay the bills.” At the same time they’re learning and working on longer term businesses as well with the knowledge they’re gaining.

Even coaches are trading time for dollars. As you know I have one-on-one coaching clients, both email only and phone. If you were to visit my coaching page right now, you’ll see I’m fully booked up and can’t take anymore clients right now. I am building a small list there of people who have read the page and are interested in that coaching program, but it would be at least January if not later before any spots are open.

Why don’t I just take more clients? Simply put. I make more from other projects I work on of my own. I do the coaching (which is trading time for money) because I ENJOY it. Wow, what a reason! In addition, the questions those coaching clients ask me become idea generation for my own products and my writing. It’s part of my customer feedback loop of knowing exactly where customers are at in this market.

I find it funny how professional speakers often stand up and talk about not doing manual labor. They just got on a plane and flew 2,000 miles, stayed in a hotel for the whole weekend, took hours to put together a presentation, and then got up and spoke. They do this for a fee or to make sales in the back of the room. What do you think they just did?

They did manual labor in trading their time for money. Yet they’re on stage telling us NOT to do that. What’s wrong with this picture?

Speaking can be very lucrative, but it is most definitely trading time for money. Of course if they do some good followup on any customers they generate there, they can turn that time into long-term money. But they’re going to find it difficult to “outsource” their onstage speaking business.

The real issue here is that you also want to build other forms of income that DON’T rely on your time.

For example use those copywriting skills you’re practicing to create sales for some of your own products. A virtual assistant can use the same skills they drive traffic to other people’s sites with for themselves a portion of the time. The coach can use the feedback they’re getting as ideas for their own products (removing any private information of course).

Everyone’s goal should be to have a few sources of completely passive income that support your lifestyle. In other words, if you quit today doing EVERYTHING in your business, you still have enough money coming in.

How can you create income streams like that? One way I’ve found to do it is to promote affiliate programs with a continuity membership attached. Get a few thousand each for several of those, and now your basic needs are all taken care of. For example, I get paid every single month from members on http://www.netofficetoolbox.com along with a few other programs.

Are you in a position where you have enough coming in even if you stop selling products, stop writing your blog, etc.? You may or may not be, but that is a worthy goal I’d assign to everyone as part of their plans.

What about the rest of your time? That’s yours to do with as you please. Maybe you want to continue doing virtual assistant work or copywriting or coaching. That’s your decision and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

My suggestion…do both. Be willing to trade time for money as long as you ENJOY it. At the same time, build long-term passive income streams.

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