Detox to Grow Your Businesses & Creativity with Wellness Blogger Lina Lopez DONE

Lance Interview with Freelance Content Creator & Wellness Blogger Lina Lopez
Lance profile interview with Lina Lopez the Wellness Blogger
Lina M Lopez Wellness Blogger

Creating great content is critical to succeeding in any business today. When Lina Lopez’s recent posts caught our eye (not to mention our appetite), we reached out to get some first-handed insight on what helps her thrive. As a content creator, photographer, and wellness blogger based in NYC, Lina is all about working the balance between work, life, self-care, and growing toward her healthiest self! In addition to Lina’s great tips for you as an individual, she also shares what keeps her clients happy, ensures she’s learning more, and ultimately how she runs her business like a pro!

Hope you enjoy learning more about what it’s like to be an ace blogger and content creator! If you’re stuck in a social media vortex btw, we really recommend her blog post about taking some time to unplug.

Let’s make sure you pat your own back… What’s your biggest strength as a solopreneur, Lina?

The ability to create solutions for any problem that may arise. That is a skill I had to learn in order to survive in this industry. I feel like I have been able to figure things out on my own. Sometimes it can be frustrating, but oh so rewarding when you create solutions for your own challenges.

What’s the best business or money advice you ever got as a freelancer/side hustler?

Please know when to ask for help. As a freelancer, I thought I could do everything myself and I ended up spending a lot of time and energy doing something I could easily delegate to someone else. Don’t be scared to invest in your business and in yourself. Hire people to help you when needed, buy a course to learn or better your skills.

My other advice is to please know your numbers. This is something I had no clue about for a long time. I estimated how much I was making per month. I didn’t have a clear understanding of how much money I was making or how much money I was investing back into my business – and how much of it was going out. Once I started treating my business as a business – and not as a hobby – my business grew 10 times more.

Now for a moment of realness, what are you struggling with right now in your business?

I am struggling to maintain a unique voice. We are so overstimulated and influenced by social media. Staying true to myself can be challenging sometimes. When I feel I am losing myself in the crowd, I do a social media detox. Taking a break from social media helps me to start creating without the influence of other people. I recently took almost two months off and it was incredible. I was able to come up with different ideas and also to create a new business venture which I am so passionate about.

As a wellness blogger and content creator based in NJ and NYC, what challenges and advantages do you think are unique to each city?

NYC is advanced in terms of healthy food stops and wellness centers. NJ is a little bit slower in that sense. I am so lucky I live close to the city so I can take advantage of all its opportunities. New Jersey is slowly getting better at offering more healthy alternatives. I take it as an opportunity for growth and I am not shy about offering my food photography services to any new healthy restaurant in my area.

We know the freelancer life is all about the hustle toward incredible goals, where do you see yourself in 5 years? Financially, personally, and with your businesses?

I want to keep growing my content creation/blogging business because it is a great creative outlet. I love photography and helping brands share their message. I am being pulled towards sharing a different message (not only healthy eating). I’d like to maybe do some life coaching for women like me who feel lost and have no idea what they want to do as a career. Financially, I’d like to keep sharing my skills with people and make a good living doing what I love.  I believe once you follow your heart, the money will follow. I have so many personal goals but I don’t have any expectations. I just got engaged and am currently planning a wedding for next year. Hopefully, babies in the next 5 years – who knows?!

Freelancer Blogger - Lina Lopez
Lina Lopez creative blogger
Lina Lopez, Wellness Blogger and Content Creator
Lina Lopez Lance Interview

Inspired and want to learn more? Follow Lina on Instagram and her website.  Thanks again for your time and sharing more about your freelancing, Lina!

Useful, Timely Business Tips from Experts

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Scale your businesses from expert peers in your industry. Photo courtesy of Lance

Freelancers, we’ve got you covered when it comes to your business questions! Ever been midstream in an editing session and wondered when’s the next sale on that equipment you desperately want? Or been walking your midday pack of dogs and wondered when you should raise your rates this year… oh wait, did you forget to raise them last year? Or wondered if there was a good time to run a promotion on the new hair coloring skills you’ve perfected over the last couple months?

We’ve got you! After years of freelancing ourselves, we were constantly asking ourselves these kinds of financial questions but felt like, huh, where do we get the answers? And who do we trust? And then we started asking around and seeing our friends were struggling to get all sorts of advice. We could only get it at conferences or a couple times of year from people the people we admire.

So, we thought what a great opportunity to bring people who have been there, done that, and succeeded into the Lance app! Now as soon as you sign in you can get tips customized to the jobs you’ve told us you do – and you get new tips every week! They’re specific to making and saving money in you job at that time of year.

How can you make the most of these tips? 

  • Just click on Tips in the More Menu of the iPhone app to see all the tips automatically customized for you.
  • Slide through the tips to see which ones you’d like to follow.
  • Click on the Thumbs Up or Heart images to let your experts know you’ve liked their tip.
  • If you want to start a conversation with one of your experts, just click on the Talk bubble and you can ask any questions you might have. They’re looking forward to helping you learn more and grow.

We’re thrilled to help you get all kinds of advice you need – when you need it – to save and make more money. Between the expenses tracking and these new tips, we look forward to helping you grow your income streams and savings!

P.S. While we have friends all over the place, we know there are freelancing experts you’re really excited to connect with more. We’d love to hear more about who those people are – just drop us a note at the Contact Us link on this site or through the app. We’re sure they’ll be flattered to know you want to hear more from them!

7 Steps To Starting a Side Hustle DONE

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Ready to start a side hustle? Photo courtesy of Andrew Neel

Okay, you’ve decided to create a side hustle. Great! Like many freelancers and side hustlers before you, you’re now probably asking yourself what’s next and how do I get started?

You might be thinking, “How should I go about marketing my product or service to the world? How will anyone see my product or service? Wait, I also have to manage my invoices too? This is going to be a real problem as I have no clue what I’m doing – and I thought I’d just spend a couple hours a week on this. I’ve never done anything like this before and I don’t know if I’m capable. I still have a full-time job I have to worry about along with all my other responsibilities.”

Breathe. Don’t spin out. Everything will be okay and you’ll be a side hustle superstar soon enough. With the use of all the latest online platforms, your world will become easier before you know it. All those questions will quickly become answered, and those worries will quickly float away with just a little setup work. You’ll be able to allow automation and online platforms to work for you in ways that can easily turn your side hustle into full-time demand, if you want.

We’ll talk about registering your business starting tomorrow. In the meantime, let’s start with setting up a space where you can start selling your product or service side hustle. By the way, just to make sure we’re all on the same page – when we talk about a product, we’re talking about a tangible thing you’re selling whether it’s homemade jams, potted plants or abstract paintings. Everything else that you spend time doing and is likely billed given the hours spent is a service, like providing photography, catering or hair styling services. Cool? Ok, let’s dive into how to get set-up on an online platform.

Selling Using Online Platforms

You should start your side hustle with a presence where people can actually buy from you. If you’re selling a service, the online platforms at your disposal will likely allow you to provide a menu of service options and help you with scheduling, invoicing and payment tracking as well. These used to be things you had to manage all on your own but now they’re all automated! Same goes for products, though instead of a menu of services, you’ll likely enter images and descriptions of the specific items you’re selling and the platform will manage gathering your buyer’s information and any specific requests. They might even have mailing support. Given these differences, you’ll likely come across and use a platform built to accommodate your specific side hustle needs. There are a number of websites to choose from, so here are just two suggestions to get you started. If they don’t fit what you’re going to be doing, just Google your side hustle type (i.e. dog walking) and “platform”.

For Products:

If you haven’t used it as a seller, you may already have used Etsy to buy pillow cases, stationery, prints or potted plants. People use this platform to see just about anything. As a seller, it’s just as easy to register with and use. Just go to Etsy, where you’ll be able to register an account to begin the process of getting your products posted and sold. The process looks like this:

  1. Create your shop’s preference (i.e., language, country, currency)
  2. Name your shop
  3. Stock your shop – This is where you’ll be able to add all of your different products, price them, create delivery times for each, and more.
  4. Select your payments preference – Decide which payment option works best for you (i.e. Paypal, personal bank account).
  5. Determine your billing methodology – This determines how you want to bill your customers.

And that’s it! After that it’s a matter of your creating and shipping your products on time. Etsy really is a great all-in-one place to help get your products-focused side hustle started.

For Services:

If you’re looking to sell a service, like writing content, creating websites or bookkeeping, you might want to check out platforms like Fiverr and UpWork. Other sites out there are also more specific to in-person services, like Rover for dog walking or BeGlammed for beauty services. Signing up in any of these platforms is fairly similar to the Etsy process – there are just questions more specific to the services you’ll be providing and rather than products you can offer different types or durations of your services. With Fiverr as an example, you just go to their site and click on the option to become a seller. Next, simply follow these four steps:

  1. Enter your personal info (i.e., name, profile picture, location)
  2. Enter your professional info – Describe the services you’re able to offer your clients.
  3. Link any relevant bank accounts – Sync the payment options that work best for you (i.e. Paypal, personal bank account).
  4. Create account security passwords – Make sure your bank account and Fiverr account remain secure.

That’s it! If you budget out a few hours over the weekend or after work one day, you should be able to take all these steps and provide really great descriptions of all the products or services you’re offering. The few hours of time spent are well worth the effort – especially if you do just a little research into what the top sellers are doing around you on the platforms. With just a bit of effort, everything else will be automated for you and you’ll be selling whatever you can dream up in no time!

Marketing Your Side Hustle Using Social Media

Marketing, marketing, marketing! Once you’ve set up your virtual storefront, it’s time to look at how you get yourself out there beyond a couple emails or posts amongst friends and family. Using social media platforms to market yourself and your products or services can go a long way in gaining clients and publicly showing how what you’re doing is unique. Using social media effectively does require a little bit of a learning curve, but it provides such an opportunity for you to learn what your clients want and to educate your target market about why they should choose what you’re selling.

There are numerous websites and social media platforms you can use to be the most market friendly to your customers. In choosing which websites and social media platforms to use, it’s most important to think about your product or service, and where your clients are likely to be spending their time.

Is what you’re selling visually appealing? If so, then creating an Instagram account could be the perfect fit. If you feel the best way to depict your product or service is by using words, then Twitter or LinkedIn could be more appropriate. If your potential clients are scattered, create one social media account first where you’re most comfortable, and then expand across more.

As part of setting up your social media handles, make it easy for your customers to buy from you. With Twitter and Instagram, all you have to do is your website or platform profile page in your bio. Make sure to talk about where people can find you and your wares in your posts too (i.e., “Link in bio” should be at the end of most of your posts.

Remember, it really comes down to two simple steps:

  1. Choose a social media platform you think your clients are already on – and that shows off your products or services well.
  2. Make your product easily accessible from your social media handle and reference it often in the comments or posts.

Now, You’re Ready to Sell!

By choosing the right combination of sales platforms and social media sites, you’ll be able to start and make the most of your side hustle quickly. What may have seemed complicated at first, I hope is much clearer now. While you do have to put a little work into the setup – not just what you’re selling, it’ll all be worth the automation you’ll be taking advantage of very soon. Next, we’ll post about how to start a side hustle when you already have a strong network in place.

Here to keep you moving – Team Lance

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Should You Start a Side Hustle? DONE

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Are you ready to juggle and get ahead with a side hustle? Photo courtesy of Brad Neathery

Whether it’s through Instagram posts or conversations with friends, you’re probably hearing more people talking about working a side hustle. In addition to holding down full-time jobs, your friends might be spending their nights or weekends walking dogs, renting out their apartments or consulting for corporate clients. And they’re not alone.

Working a side hustle has become a way to both make some extra money – if your full-time job allows it – and test the waters with whether you’d like to turn a skill or passion into a new full-time job on your own.

Just like with freelancing, side hustles allow for more flexibility and freedom in how and when you work – as well as space to negotiate your rates with various clients. Over the last couple decades, there has been a significant and growing shift amongst people moving from working more traditional, 9-to-5 jobs to freelancing full-time for themselves. In fact, freelancers and side hustlers account for 57.3 million Americans today. In the next decade, freelancers will account for over half the workforce in this country and others around the globe.

Who Should Consider a Side Hustle

The type of people who pursue a side hustle do so for multiple reasons. Often they are motivated financially – to start making multiple incomes streams to save for a big purchase, secure more retirement savings or pay off debt. But just as often they’re now looking to further develop passions, expand upon budding skill sets and reinforce their hireability across multiple job types as well.

When pursuing financial reasons, people are now largely looking to diversify and add to their full-time income. They’re not alone – one in four people in the US already have a second source of income. Side hustles and the gig economy are not only for people of a certain income range. People making over $100,000 in annual incomes are using gig employment to quickly boost their retirement nest egg – and now able to do this much more flexibly thanks to online platforms, like EtsyLyft and Airbnb.

When passion-driven, people typically feel their full-time job isn’t aligned with their interests or not very purpose-driven. Side hustling allows for people to keep their full-time job along with its stability while allotting some time to these passions. These side hustles may include picking up writing, photography or house sitting for animals on a regular basis.

Increasingly, people are also looking for a way to further develop their personal growth. When surveyed, 40% of freelancers reported they got into side hustles and freelancing to keep learning and supporting themselves through new skills. These people often look to side hustling to also expand their network and reputation through these new or additional skills.

A demographic increasingly taking to side hustles is baby boomers. They’re often looking most immediately to increase their retirement savings, having experienced the impacts of the last recession and often still paying off their children’s student loans. Along with the financial benefits though, side hustles allow baby boomers to stay involved in their communities through this part-time work or develop skills they can take and charge for along their upcoming travels.

Why Side Hustles Are Beneficial

All the reasons side hustles are taken on as listed above are the reasons they’re beneficial. They can net immediate and long-term increased income. Side hustles allow for someone to keep a day job as well as pursue passions and interests without having to go “all-in”. These gigs can help grow social network and create a forcing function to learning new skills. These benefits are particularly invaluable to growing a resume and keeping it fresh. And by working in another environment or context, there are constantly new opportunities to learn, expand and get exposed to different people and ideas. This final point is significant to what is now being referenced as the future indicator of success: adaptability quotient. Defined as the ability to adapt and thrive in a fast-changing environment, this is quickly replacing long held respect for IQ and EQ.

When Side Hustles Can Pose Challenges

While there are many benefits that come along with side hustles, there are also disadvantages. Side hustling can leave one with very little down or free time. Once a side hustler is done with their full-time job, it’s off to the side hustle – creating an almost non-stop work life. If not monitored, a side hustle can also begin to intervene on a full-time job. Time management skills are critical to balancing a full-time job or pursuits along with a side hustle. It’s often best to wade into the side hustle waters slowly, so there’s the opportunity to increase or decrease the workload as needed around a principle income or family needs. Stress or feeling a sense of overwhelm around juggling jobs should be monitored and adjusted for accordingly.

What to Ask Yourself Before Diving Into a Side Hustle

Given the pros and cons  of taking on another job or set of clients, there are a few questions you should ask yourself before determining this is the right time to start a side hustle:

  • Do I have an idea or passion?
  • Do I have the time to learn? Whether it’s a new skill set, platform or networking medium?
  • Am I willing to fail a little bit along the way as I learn?
  • Do I want more freedom and flexibility in how and when I work?
  • Could I use some extra cash?

If you answered yes to most or all of these questions, you’re ready and capable of taking on a side hustle.

It’s going to take a lot of elbow grease but if you apply yourself and search out the right communities, you’ll start gaining more than just another income stream. Whether it’s those new skills, turning your side hustle into your main income or growing your AQ, you’ll be well on your way to joining the growing ranks of side hustlers and freelancers. Throughout this week, we’ll post more about how to setup your side hustle using all the online platforms available to manage your invoicing and even marketing yourself through various social media channels.

Oona from Lance

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