The continuous growth of platforms such as TikTok, Twitch, or Discord is reminding us that our society has barely scraped the spectrum of opportunities offered to us through technological innovation. Whereas most people focus on the entertainment side of things, an unprecedented perk of new technologies and platforms is the ability to earn money by doing what you love – or, at least, by doing what you don’t necessarily hate.

The domain of platforming your music, or writing – or even striving to become a full-time influencer is something that intuitively comes to mind, as those practices have been around for a while now. However, a much more realistic “perfect” job would be something that doesn’t require extensive effort, falls within the category of a hobby, and can be sufficiently monetised.

How do students nowadays generate extra income?

Students of graphic design, web design, and similar disciplines usually tend to practice freelance work – be it through various freelance companies, or through platforms such as Fiverr. Videographers and photographers take up a similar approach, with the addition of social media work – taking photos of prospective influencers, editing their videos and similar. Many students have oriented themselves to streaming – combining the aspect of an interesting activity with the potential to earn some extra pocket money. Similarly, some students find a way to make extra money by playing some of the most popular casino games – thereby gambling with the hope of a win. 

Playing in online casinos is increasing in popularity as the platforms are accessible from a mobile device, at any given time, in any given setting – offering users a comfortable, flexible approach.

Following that logic, streaming has also become increasingly popular, as most people stream the activities they would do anyways. Thus, these ways of generating extra income seem like much less of a hassle than many other alternatives. Many more students earn some extra money through social media marketing and online business – usually managing profiles for smaller, local companies that haven’t yet entered the social media market.

In other words, the most popular way of generating additional income is either by doing what you’re good at anyway, or by doing something that requires minimal effort, and is easily accessible.

However, if you don’t mind investing resources other than your time into your potentially profitable hobby, making and selling crafts is another popular route. Many other small businesses, besides crafts, seem to be booming – from flower arranging, or soap production, to candy packaging, or various start-ups. 

All in all, it seems that the point of a profitable hobby isn’t purely based on the need to be innovative – but primarily, in knowing how to market yourself, in balancing the amount of time and money you wish to put into your hobby, and in managing and developing your own skill set.

It is still important to note that in order for you to earn money through your hobby, you need to develop it, work on it – and maintain the audience that might share your interest. Thus, even though it might seem super simple, there are hurdles to overcome.

What if your hobby doesn’t seem that profitable?

Even if you don’t think that you have particularly valuable skills to offer – there are still opportunities you can take advantage of. The previously mentioned potential of streaming isn’t solely related to gaming content – people stream themselves eating, reading, or practising any other mundane daily task. The only important thing is recognizing that there is a potential audience waiting for you to pop up. Furthermore, many research facilities, marketing companies, and similar offer the opportunity to take online surveys in exchange for money, gift cards, or discount codes. Whereas this might not be direct, tangible money – it still offers you the opportunity to save money – and by that, slightly increase your budget.

Another avenue worth pursuing is coaching and/or tutoring – any skill that you possess can be taught, practised, and perfected. What you need to do in order to generate money as a coach or tutor is define your skill set, find your strengths – and market an approach of developing those strengths in others.

Although the practice of coaching might sound quite vague – this is precisely its biggest benefit. Some people might seek a sports coach, a personal trainer, or someone to motivate them in their pursuits, but others might want to learn how to program, dance, study, or build self-esteem for public speaking and performing.

Tutoring languages is an especially valuable approach to generating money – especially for non-English natives that might earn money solely by speaking their native language to someone who wants to get a deeper, better understanding of it. Similarly, native speakers of English can offer their services to international students or young professionals that are potentially struggling with the language, or solely wish to expand their vocabulary.

In summary – everyone can turn their hobby into something profitable, it’s just a matter of how profitable it will be, and how much commitment is needed before you genuinely start making money.