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12 Passive Income Ideas for graphic designers that you can start right away

Branding & Marketing, Mindset & Strategy, Passive & Recurring Revenue | 0 comments

The problem with working as a freelancer is that cash-flow problems are the main issue. Depending on money from your clients alone is not viable as incoming work is often unstable.

In fact, even if incoming work is fairly stable; you might even have problems with late or non-payments from clients.

This causes stress as you’re always focused on chasing money as opposed to working your craft.

Regardless of whether you’re a full-time freelancer or woking a regular 9-5; this list will give you a few ways to make extra cash, this weekend (or holiday season).

Here’s my list of 12 ways to make passive income as a freelance graphic designer:

1. Teach a course online

An easy way to generate passive income is by teaching your graphic design skills. There are 2 ways that you can do this:

Option 1:

Record and edit a professional video that people will find valuable and sell your course on a platform like Udemy.

Selling your courses online means that you only have to put in the effort at the beginning and keep earning money when someone purchases your course.

It’s important that you market your course so that people know about your offering.

2: Teach live via Zoom, Google Hangouts, and Skype – This way you can charge a higher rate for personalized training and your time.

Option 2:

Run a local training workshop for small businesses

More and more people are augmenting their online learning and showing interest in attending live sessions and workshops. 

Preferring face-to-face learning and meeting & mingling with others lets you tap into the offline teaching market.

Teach branding and social media strategy

Teach small businesses the importance of branding and how to create brand identity kits. Include the necessity of social media and how to create resources such as images and video for their online presence.

2. Create an eBook and sell on Kindle/Amazon

In line with teaching your graphic design skills, creating an eBook to sell on Kindle/ Amazon earns you passive income.

Creating an ebook only takes the initial setup – so, you don’t have to keep re-inventing the wheel every time you need to make a sale.

It also allows you to show yourself as an authority on the matter and brings awareness to your brand.

See how Ellen Lupton sells her eBooks online.

3. Create an apparel brand and/or shirt designs and sell through Printful.com

Knowing what excites your community about your brand, could make this work. Perhaps you have a quirky catch-phrase that you use often? This could be the beginning of a new brand.

Be sure to use a theme that your audience is excited about and that’s unique to you.

4. Design a Christmas or holiday greeting card celebrating your community and sell it.

Being able to share what’s unique about your community or surroundings excites people.

Use a trade printer like 4over.com to print your designs once your customers’ orders from you. Negotiate dropshipping rates with them to streamline the process.

5. Sell design templates

Selling design templates means that you earn for as long as people are buying your templates.

Sell on platforms such as:

  • Creative Market – An online marketplace for graphic designers.
  • Etsy – An online market for all things creative.

6. Create and sell unique poster designs

These are items that can be resold over again. I’m not talking about advertising posters.

Inspirational words, unique artwork, and even landscaping artwork too.

7. Build a membership community

Build your own community and charge a membership fee. This could be for networking learning or collaborating.

Making sure that members enjoy special benefits by joining.

Find out how to create a premium membership here.

8. Start a blog & monetize it with affiliate marketing

Starting a blog allows you to show the world more of yourself. But the most important part is to provide value to your audience.

Although writing blog posts for your own blog doesn’t make you money (in itself)—you can leverage the traffic to your website through affiliate marketing.

Apply to affiliate marketing programs and place links to products on 3rd party websites. Once someone makes a purchase through the link you’ve provided; you earn a commission from the sale.

Check out Adobe Creative Cloud’s Affiliate Program.

9. Launch a podcast

A podcast allows you to engage with your community. A place where you and other industry experts discuss matters affecting the graphic design industry.

Through engagement; you build brand awareness and trust from your audience.

Leverage this tool to make an impact in the industry.

10. Sell your own fonts

If you have a knack for Typography; creating your own fonts gives you the opportunity to earn passive income.

Sell these on your website or a font foundry like Fontspring.

11: Sell Stock vector images

Creating vector images and selling them on stock image sites like Vector Stock and Envato Market earns you money while you are sleeping.

Make sure that you find the best marketplace for you and that you market your images effectively.

12. Come up with your unique idea.

Run a Google and/or YouTube research campaign for an hour or two. You’ll find other relevant passive income ideas

Use these keyword variables:

These 12 ways allow you to earn passive income as a graphic designer. Ensuring that you streamline your marketing efforts allows you to mainly focus on design work.

Templates, apparel design, and building a membership community is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to creating multiple income streams. Focusing on passive income streams lets you earn cash for many years to come.

Overcome your cash flow problems by setting up these lucrative ideas right away.

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