People have been finding unique (sometimes questionable) ways to make money on the internet since, well, it was invented. For this very reason, the internet has always somewhat been a silent opposition to the 9-5 job. And if you have the guts to look hard enough, you can find job offers rolling in from every direction. All you need is the willingness to roll the dice and take the risk.
Our diverse talents and personal projects have become an integral component of the internet. And this has opened up a massive entrepreneurial opportunity for each of us to operate our own businesses and regularly captivate audiences online. Some of these businesses and platforms provide supplemental income, while others require a constant dedication that resembles that of a full-time job (and then some). And although you may be putting in the hours, it may be best to hold your breath on getting the benefits and a 401k package upon sign-on.
There’s no shortage of crowdfunding sites out there, and they are all for the most part, quite unique. We’ve got the heavy hitters like Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and GoFundMe leading the charge. And chances are, you or someone you know has either backed a project or created a new project on one of these platforms. But as monetization online increases in sophistication, the platforms that turn projects and stories into income continue to diversify and become more sophisticated as well.
A few you might not have heard of? Blendle, Patreon, and Streamlabs.
Blendle is a Dutch media startup that may be attempting to save the journalism business. Blendle accepts micropayments (ranging from 19-39 cents per) for online articles in lieu of a monthly or annual subscription fee. What do they provide in return? The luxury of an ad-free experience.
This startup is very popular overseas and is becoming very successful with around 650K paid users. Mainstream partnerships are the key to Blendle’s continued success. To date, they have partnered with major online news outlets such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Financial times, with no signs of slowing down any time soon.
While the idea of micropayments in exchange for journalism is not a new idea, offering refunds for articles you don’t like certainly is. Blendle offers instant refunds in order to encourage and prioritize quality content over clickbait.
Patreon is not a new or emerging platform by any means. But it might quickly become a new favorite and one to keep an eye on. It was founded in 2013, and currently has over 52,443 creators.
Patreon’s core offering is “turning fans into predictable income.” They achieve this by offering fans exclusive content to Patreon’s registered content creators. Think, a weekly podcast, or an artist who does exclusive art shows solely online.
They say their goal is to turn fans into predictable income; and they certainly follow through with that mission. Top content creators can make upwards of $30,000/per month.
Streamlabs was founded in May 2013 and is now the #1 live streaming tool, used by 78% of the top 25K streamers on both Twitch and Youtube. The platform provides a pay per view service that allows live streamers to raise money and reach their financial goals. These goals can be as diverse as next month’s cell phone bill or a new laptop to allow for better live videogame streaming.
Who ever said playing video games can’t pay off?
Digital platforms themselves have been a key driver in helping people to monetize their products and services online. But they’re not the only driver. The entire field of social media influencers has been transformed in recent years and opened up new opportunities for everyday people like you and I. But, so has the paid influencer model. And in many ways, this field in particular has shifted from celebrity endorsements to a steady, revenue-generating model in which anyone can attempt to find their rightful niche, as long as they follow the guidance set in place by the FCC.