Side projects are one of the best ways to market your business and stay on your toes. There’s always going to be a learning curve when you create something new, so doing a side project is also a great way to gain new skills and improve on existing ones.
I’m creating this list to brainstorm a few ideas, and potentially give them away. Why? This is practice, my way of getting out of a rut. If they’re good ideas, they’ll happen whether or not I list them. It doesn’t matter who gets the credit or the cash.
House listing directory
Brokers are welcome to list their spaces online on a website that serves as a directory for an area. Each listing must have an expiration date, to avoid houses still up even after they’re sold. This could expand into the rental market, but should focus on one area. Ex. Oregon vs. all of America. Should definitely start out as a free service, just to connect brokers to people looking to rent or buy a house/apartment.
Lessons in your inbox
Learn about the world by reading your email. Curate an email newsletter covering world topics (ie. the 10 most important things in the world today), or marketing, or just interesting facts that can serve as ice breakers or conversation starters. Each section can link to a longer article about the fact (source), but readers should get the gist just from reading the newsletter. Total time it takes to read should be no longer than 2 minutes.
Grown-up bounce houses
Kids’ parties are so much more fun. Why? It would be great to bring fun back into birthday parties, especially as you get older. Target audience would be 25- to 30-year-olds who are still fit enough to have bounce houses and other fun activities at their parties. Tagline could be something like “making birthday parties fun again” or “we got old, but our parties don’t have to.”
Tax software for freelancers in [country]
Freelancing is a growing industry, and the rules surrounding it in developing countries are complicated. Software like TurboTax would be much appreciated, but isn’t always available. Larger companies typically already have their own software to automate their returns, make payments, etc. Ideally the software would also allow freelancers to file and pay exclusively online, without ever having to wait in line somewhere or go through an accountant.
Start a side project
An automated email course (MailChimp is great for this) walking someone through the steps of starting a side project. This includes testing the idea, narrowing your audience, evaluating market demand, selecting the platform, tools to use, how to market, getting funding, etc. It will take a while to create everything, but after that all people need to do is sign up to start getting the emails.
Something like Pocket, but to your inbox. You can save various URLs in this web tool (could be a Chrome extension), and whenever you’re ready hit send and the tool will email all the URLs to your inbox. I’ve browsed the web on my mobile phone many times and have manually copied + pasted interesting links to email to myself and check out later.
Build a business: [Country]
All the resources (and contact information) needed to start a business in a certain area. Places to learn about the business laws, articles discussing tax rules, directories for shipping companies, customs brokers, packaging, talent management, accounting, etc. The basics of setting up your own business, which varies by country (or even city).
Travel with new friends
This one will focus on traveling with fellow remote workers. Instead of joining a retreat organized by a host, connect with people who want to travel in the same area as you. For example, I want to go to New Zealand in September, and the platform will help me connect with other remote workers who are looking to be there. It should have a system for confirming hotel/hostel/airbnb reservations, flights, etc. Plus, it’ll list WiFi spots, since everyone traveling together will have the same sort of lifestyle (needs a few hours of work each day).
Any ideas to add? Or want to collaborate? Add a comment below or contact me.