I remember feeling lucky to have a job in college that I could walk to (and enjoyed) that paid around $8/hour. (According to the government's inflation calculator, that would be around $13/hour today.)
But since the rise of the internet, I've often thought about how easily I could have made the same amount of extra cash for far less effort from the comfort of my own dorm room. I was putting in about 6 hours a week, earning close to $50 before taxes -- or $80 in today's dollars. It wouldn't take much to duplicate that online.
In fact, just a few years out of college, I began writing online through my own website. A 2-3 hour job from my site could have equaled 10 hours I put in as an employee, and would have eliminated walking to and from work. This could have given me a lot more free time, or a lot more cash.
Of course there are plenty of ways to earn online, from offering your own products and services online to being an affiliate for other people's products and services.
But there is a new way you can make money online without your own website and without the need for products and services. And it involves something you're probably already doing on Facebook.
I know, this sounds like one of those spam emails about Bill Gates paying you $1 for every person you forward the email to. It sounds too easy or too good to be true. But here's the thing: millions of businesses advertise on Facebook (how do you think Facebook is worth so much?), and one of the holy grails for those businesses is to have people share their posts.
Why is this so valuable? Because normally a business has to pay for each individual view or click of their posts. When people share their posts, however, not only does the business get a kind of endorsement from that person to all their Facebook friends, but the business post can spread without them paying anything. Every share and all the views from those shares are free to the business.
But those shares aren't always easy to get. Yet now a new platform lets businesses pay to have their posts shared through people with the right demographics and friend counts for their needs.
That means YOU can get paid for sharing posts through a company called PennyPays. You still stay in FULL control of the posts you choose to share, so this isn't something that takes over your Facebook account. But you probably already share messages from businesses when you like what they have to say. What if they were willing to pay you, through this platform, to do that?
This isn't a get rich scheme, because you won't get rich from sharing posts. You only make 5 to 90 cents per share, depending on your Friend count on Facebook. And how many shares you receive each month depends on whether your demographics fit the needs of businesses. (But do you think college students might appeal to a few businesses for sharing their messages?)
Still, let's say you have 1000 Friends on Facebook. You'd make 50 cents per post shared, and if you only shared one per day, you'd make an extra $15/month doing this.*
Now, there IS a way to make much more money with this. If I wanted to make $80 per week online while in college today, sharing a few posts and making $15/month wouldn't really cut it. I wouldn't mind the extra cash, but it wouldn't replace a job. Here's how you could turn it into a business though.
There is an optional upgraded membership ($9.95/month) that does several things:
There are other potential elements of earning, and these can get enormous. But I'd rather be down to earth with you about earning potentials. If you focused on sharing an ad platform with local businesses and getting your friends to join for free -- because lots of LOCAL members is what makes this appealing to LOCAL businesses -- I believe you could eventually replace a part-time college income.
You can, of course, aim bigger. And since I do marketing for a living, I'll be glad to answer your questions and help you along if you choose to join this program and want to market it to businesses. (I'll even jump on the phone with them if they want to learn about it -- they will still join under YOU and you will earn your 10% of their ad spend.)
Only YOU know what you'll put into something like this. But I can tell you that if I were in college today, knowing what I know today, I would want to begin on the road to passive income like this. There's nothing wrong with a job that pays you for your hours, but that's not the way you'll ever get wealthy without becoming a corporate executive. A traditional job is good to have and to keep while you build something like this; but this extra work now can pay off for the long-term.
* PennyPays launched in early 2017, so at the time of writing this, members aren't getting many posts to share. But these should ramp up as businesses discover this advertising opportunity and as new members join, helping businesses get more reach from the platform. Join for free and there's no risk to seeing what's sent your way! You can always upgrade later if you want to experience it first.
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I'm an author and professional writer / marketer with an interest in gathering teams of those who want to learn, grow progressive businesses, have fun, and make a difference.