How Much Time Should You Dedicate to Your Side Hustle

In order to have a successful side hustle you need to dedicate time towards it.

It’s as simple as that.

The question is how much time should you dedicate towards it and what should you actually be working on?

In this article my goal is to attempt to answer that question.  However their is one sticking point I want to address before I start.

Not all side hustles are the same.

Your side hustle could be freelance writing and mine could be affiliate marketing and the task that I work on compared to yours could be totally different.  However almost all side businesses break down into usually 3 major task.

  • Marketing
  • The Work Itself
  • The Miscellaneous Stuff

On top of that the time you dedicate to each one of these will vary based on the side hustle you have.  The amount of time I recommend in each of these areas is  based on someone who puts in roughly 10 hours per week.

However if this is to much for you starting out you can cut them in half but I strongly recommend getting at least 10 hours a week as this will yield the best results.

Marketing – 4 to 5 Hours a Week

The most important task you can dedicate time towards in your side hustle is marketing it to others.  Most people might think doing the actual work itself is the most important part but if you don’t market what you do you’ll never find a client or customer to work for.

Again as I mentioned above the amount of time you dedicate towards this all depends on the type of side hustle you have.

For example, if you drive for Uber the marketing end of things is pretty much taken care of for you.  All you have to do is flip open the Uber app and you’re good to go.

However if you’re selling a digital course you created on Teachable then it may require a lot more effort on your end.

How Much Time Should You Dedicate to Marketing?

On an average week you should spend roughly 4 to 5 hours per week on marketing your side hustle.  Marketing is one of your most important activities and the one you should dedicate the most time towards.

So what can you do to market your side hustle?

Here are a few things to consider…

  • Writing content for your blog
  • Writing a weekly email newsletter
  • Creating videos on YouTube
  • Social media
  • Setting up an email autoresponder series

All of these task will help you promote your brand and build your business, the most important of them being creating content on a consistent weekly basis.

Marketing Game Plan

Step 1: Creating at least 1 written blog post per week that shares your expertise.  Putting content on the web is the easiest way to share your skills by getting found in places like search engines and social media.

Step 2: Set up an email list to collect the names of prospects by offering some sort of lead magnet.  An email list is the best way to get to know people and build a relationship with them.  I use GetResponse as my email provider.

Step 3: Promote your content throughout the week on social media.  Set up something like Buffer or Meet Edger to that will constantly work for you to promote you and your content.

The Work – 4 to 5 Hours Per Week

Now that you’ve put the most important piece of the puzzle in place the second area you need to focus on is the work itself.  This is second place you’ll be spending most of your time.

Doing the actual work is where the money is made for your side hustle but as I mentioned above this all vary’s on the kind of side hustle you have.

For example, if you are a freelance writer this is where you’ll be working with your clients.   On the other had if you’re an affiliate marketer you might be spending this time creating new affiliate agreements, creating digital products, and so on.

How Much Time Should You Dedicate Toward the Work?

Again, putting 4 to 5 hours a week is a good place to start.  This is where the money is made in your business.

Typical task might include…

  • Client work
  • Creating new affiliate relationships
  • Setting up new income streams
  • Creating new products or services

Your Work Game Plan

Step 1: Spend the majority of your time doing the actual work whether it’s creating new products, or doing the actual client work this is the most important part.

Step 2: Stratagize new income opportunities to grow your business.  Doing the actual work is important but you need to constantly be looking at ways to improve your side hustle and earn more income.

Step 3: Test new your new ideas and see what works.  Take some time each week to try new ideas and see what happens.

The Miscellaneous Stuff – 1 to 3 Hours Per Week

Finally, you’ll also need to dedicate some time towards the miscellaneous stuff in your side hustle.  These are the things that can suck up most of your time and do almost nothing to increase your income.

However they are still a necessary part of your business.  A good example of this for me is email.

In a normal week I check my email at least 3 times per day and every time I do this I find myself spending 10 minutes here and 15 minutes there to answer a few quick emails.

In the end this is the area you want to spend the least amount of your time.

How Much Time Should You Dedicate Towards Miscellaneous Stuff?

In a weeks time 1 to 3 hours a week is plenty of time to put towards the miscellaneous things in your business.  However their are times depending on what’s going on where you’ll spend more than this.

Typical miscellaneous task might include…

  • Checking email
  • Billing clients
  • Taxes
  • Cleaning up your work area and staying organized

Miscellaneous Task Game Plan

Step 1: Set a specific time each day you want to work on miscellaneous task.  The ideal situation is to do these these things once per day.  However I know this isn’t possible for most people.

Step 2: Look for ways to off load some of these task.  Handing off some of these task to other people is the best way to get the things that don’t grow your side business off your plate.

How Much Time Do You Spend on Your Side Hustle?

In the end spending 10 hours a week is not a hard and fast rule.  If you have a bunch of clients you might spend 10 hours a week on just that alone.

The key is not to get stuck in just one of these areas but rather to dedicate time towards each of these.

So how much time are you dedicating toward your side hustle?  

Share your thoughts and comments below.


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