6 Simple Steps to Building an Automated Money-Making System with Your Creative Skills

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Business / Idea Generation / Mailing Lists / Money

Let’s be honest here. Most of us want more time and more money. Both will help us create more art.

This is what we love to do.

But making money is hard and it takes time, you say! You don’t know where to start and how to maximise your earnings.

One of the best ways to make more money and more time (at the same time!) is through generating passive income.

I make passive income through Red Lemon Club, and I want to show you how it’s done.

I’ve spoken about making money passively in previous articles, and I plan to create a product soon on making a passive income system for creative people running creative businesses.

But for now, here is a step-by-step mini-guide on how to do it.

There are other ways, but this is one proven way that works (it does for me). Bear in mind that the challenge is not simply in knowing how it’s done, but in actually doing it, and I have spent a lot of time putting the system together.

Knowing the system as I have it below will save you a lot of time and frustration.

Here is how to create a money-making system that will eventually work on its own for you, so that you can concentrate on your creative projects.

1. Create useful free content

Step1_passive

This can be written articles on a blog, tips, graphics, comics, talk shows, tutorials, webinars, audio rants, top ten lists, video guides, and podcasts.

Many platforms exist that you can use to host and share this content, including wordpress blogs, tumblr, social media, youtube, medium for articles, etc.

You don’t need your own site to store and share content. You just need your own landing page, which I will discuss further down.

Think of your strengths as a creative pro and how that strength can be channeled into content.

What do you know about that others don’t, and would find useful? Often, you don’t need to look far to find something you can be useful for. Have belief in yourself and get it out there.

What do you know that will genuinely improve the lives and businesses of others?

What experiences have you had that others can learn from?

What struggles have you come through?

Maybe you’re a photographer with experience landing jobs in foreign countries for paid travel assignments. You can craft free content through showing people how to earn money as a travel photographer. Many would be interested in this.

Or you can show people how to take pictures in a certain way, with a certain type of kit, or in a particular style. It’s up to you and what you think people would be interested in.

In my case, I wanted to share with other creatives everything I’d learned about marketing my illustrations.

Create informational material that is engaging and useful for people, but not before you…

2. …Identify a target audience for that content

identify_audience_passive

Work out who will benefit from your useful information and direct everything to these people.

Commit to serving and really caring for them. In my case, it is independent, freelancing and other creative people working in small businesses.

The best way to find your audience is to search for problems you can solve with your expertise. The people who have those specific problems are your target audience.

Identify and write down your niche, target audience.

Having a clear target audience will focus your content and create a stronger emotional connection with those people who it is tailored for.

Hold these thoughts right now, we’ll get back to why your’e making free, focused content in a minute. Next we need…

3. …A useful product that people will pay for

useful_product_passive

To make passive income, you need a product that people will pay for. Providing a service can work for passivity, but only if you outsource it. If you provide a service yourself, it defeats the point of making money passively.

Create a product with a price tag that you know your market would be willing to pay for. This takes a little research and asking around.

Find out what real problems people in your target audience have and solve them with your product, just like you’ve done with your free material.

Digital products are easy for passive income.

There is virtually no overhead costs and they can be delivered instantly to customers. You can have a physical product, but the system is slightly different, and not quite in the scope of this article.

Services like SendOwl, which I currently use for my Only Option course, are great for hosting and delivering digital products.

Create the product and host it for sale on one of these sites with a built-in payment system. Paypal and Stripe are two payment systems often built into these product-hosting sites.

Make sure the free content you’ve been providing is relevant and educates people about the value in your main product.

All ok so far? Next…

4. Create a useful, free ebook or digital product that you can give away

freebook_passive

Make an ebook (or other digital product) that you can give away for free in exchange for a new email newsletter subscriber. In my case, the free ebook that I give away is here, on this landing page.

By the way, if you’re not on my list, and you want to learn more about stuff like this, sign up!

5. Build a landing page that builds an email list with this free product

landingpage_passive

All your free content should be directed towards a web page that collects email subscribers. I.e. your free content generates traffic that is directed here.

An email list is one of the best ways to build a community of people who are interested in what you have to say over the long-term – a small portion of whom will buy your product/s.

You need to get set up with an email service like Aweber, Mailchimp or ActiveCampaign that allows you to send out automated emails to people.

To encourage your community to sign up, give away the free ebook you just made, in exchange for an email sign up. See how I’ve done it on the main Red Lemon Club website, or here.

The landing page should explain all the good reasons for people to get hold of your ebook.

About 4% is generally considered a decent conversion rate for people who sign up to your newsletter, having landed on your landing page.

6. Create an automatic email series that leads to sales

autoemail_passive

Gone are the days when you sell things to people who don’t yet know you. You must establish a relationship of trust before you can offer things for people to buy, and emails are still great for doing this.

You can send out regular, useful emails to your email list manually. This is great, but this would not be passive.

To make things 100% automated, you can set up a series of emails to send out every few days that delivers free content to new subscribers once they’ve signed up and are on your list.

An automated series, perhaps providing some tips, is a great way to introduce people to your paid, main product, which you can pitch for sale at the end of the series.

This is where you make your passive cha-ching income.

About 7-15% of your email sign ups should buy your product at the end of a well-written automated email series.

You can now continue to share free content or keep things automated.

More content will lead more people to your email sign up landing page, your email series, and eventually a sale.

It’s up to you how engaged or not you want to be in the whole process.

The point is, it is possible for things to be completely automated, especially if you hire others to help add more content and run things smoothly.

Overview

Create free content to generate email subscribers that buy your product within an automated, digital system.

Final point: Email is not dead, and as long as you provide focused, useful and targeted content, you will do well for a long time.

I encourage you to send me an email and ask me more questions if you have them.

.

The Author

Alex is a project starter, sometimes finisher, writer and illustrator. He started Red Lemon Club in 2009 with the aim of helping talented creative people leave their mark.

15 Comments

  1. Darren Robinson says

    You Rock Alex! This has got to be the most perfect plan! Can wait to get into it!

    • Alex Mathers says

      Thanks Darren – I’d love to hear of your progress – ask me any questions. Best! Alex

  2. Thanks Alex! I’ve had an idea brewing for quite a while now that could fit well into this plan. One helpful resource for deciding on the actual name of whatever it is you’re selling is the Google Keyword Planner. This method can show you how popular a search term is. Something too popular might not be worth it. But something that is fairly popular with weak competition is a nice sweet spot.

  3. Manoj Kumar Jawlia says

    Thanx Alex.. you r doing a great job.. trying to absorb your golden rules..

  4. D.K. Upshaw says

    All right, that’s ONE way to make passive income. What are the others?

  5. This is great content! Did you know that there are systems set up for you just like this?

    I started looking in to money making systems about 6 months ago, and I was scammed multiple times. After doing the research, I finally found the system I was looking for. This system is call Hardcore Funnels. It enables you to build an e-mail list, make commissions, and put those commissions on auto-pilot. I started with Hardcore Funnels this month, and after putting in the initial work, I know wake up with an extra $100-200/day in my clickbank account.

    Check out the system yourself!

    http://www.hardcorefunnels.com/?ref=9944
    -Jeff

  6. Do you mind if I quote a couple of your articles as long as
    I provide credit and sources back to your site? My blog is in the very same area of
    interest as yours and my visitors would really benefit from some of the information you provide here.

    Please let me know if this ok with you. Thank you!

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