A decade ago, you’d have laughed if someone claimed they could make a million at uni. But nowadays, it’s not out of the question. Influencers like Ibz Mo are proof that nothing really stands between us and an audience.
Tech has given us that potential. Got something to say? You have a portal to the world in your pocket. Your only choice is how you go about it…
With Freshers season winding down, here are some of the best ways to get noticed and make a killing from your iPhone:
Blog or vlog about something you love
Many blogs start as a hobby. Some, however, blow up in a big way. Anna Newton’s The Anna Edit began as a way to let off steam during her psychology degree. Today, she has a readership in the tens of thousands, as well as her own book and clothing line.
Anna succeeded because she created a valuable platform that gave people a reason to come back and spread the word. This all came from a clear sense of advice and inspiration, even if she never expected to make a living from it.
The blogging trend also counts for vloggers. Stars such as PewDiePie and Dude Perfect have made millions by filming themselves talking, commenting, pranking, testing makeup or playing video games. Dude Perfect is worth £15.6m in advertising and sponsorship. When you build an audience, brands want to capitalise. YouTube lets advertisers bid on video time, so even smaller vlogs can make money if done right.
Meanwhile, discover and give your opinion on other blogs. Be an active commentator and strike up some friendships. You might gain some cross-promotional opportunities – more and more readers or viewers will switch on.
Become a podcaster
Apps like Podbean enable you to upload an audio file and share it with the world. That’s huge for students, because you can grab a few mates, nail a concept, and edit it down to a great show. Carving a name for yourself is as simple as finding a room and microphone.
Again, sponsors come calling when a podcast gains infamy. The biggest podcasts on the planet – The Joe Rogan Experience, WTF with Marc Maron, and Stuff You Should Know – net tens of thousands of dollars per episode. The earning potential is limitless.
It’s important to stay positive and keep the uploads coming. Success rarely happens overnight. Stick to a plan, too, so you spend your time wisely and focus on what works.
Find Insta fame
Social media can make students megastars. Instagram, Tumblr and Snapchat allow you to turn a passion into a bankable concept. Fashion, fitness, art, photography and memes are just some popular themes – if you love it, others probably will too.
That’s how an influencer is born: they live their lives and inspire others to follow in their footsteps. Build an engaged audience, and you may be approached by brands wanting to tap into your network. Joe Wicks, for example, grew to fame (and a net worth of £14.5m) by uploading his workout routines on Instagram.
Get extra insight by joining other people like you. Events will help you see what’s hot: trends, attitudes and innovation. Find meetups for similar hobbyists. Photography groups, book clubs, exhibitions, local fashion shows… All are packed with future contacts. Just turn up, listen, chat, and swap details. Things will quickly snowball.
Ready to turn your online experience into an income generator? The opportunity is there, if you know how to get noticed. Others have done it, and you can too.