Last week we looked at the tools Mimi used to improve her savings. While saving is an important discipline, you also need to actively explore additional avenues of wealth creation because you can’t save yourself rich. Over the last few weeks, I have been discussing the concept of wealth creation and the fact that for lasting wealth, you need to create multiple with Lara and Mofe, both of whom are in their mid-thirties and looking for ways to augment their income.
If like Lara you already run a business, how can you expand your product or service line to include additional areas you can generate revenue from? Mofe on the other hand has a full-time job, and so she should be thinking about what she can start on the side – especially now that people and companies are looking for quality locally sourced goods/services.
If you are serious about creating additional sources of income, then there are a couple of questions you should ask yourself:
- What problem do you see around you that you can create a solution for and charge people to use?
- Now that you’re saving, how do you get the best returns from the money you are setting aside – is your money just sitting in a current account or in a higher interest-bearing account? Are you saving in mutual funds or Treasury Bills?
While you’re reflecting on the questions, check out just a few opportunities below, see what resonates most with you and do your homework:
E-commerce: Companies like Konga, Jumia, etc. have made it easy to get your products/services online so you don’t have to worry about setting up a physical shop or getting your own website. All you need to do is have a good product, which they showcase for you and you pay them a commission on the sale price. With all the issues around buying things from outside of the country, more people will look to sourcing locally so you need to step up your production quality. Read the fine print though and make sure their payment terms are acceptable to you.
Social Media: The best thing about any social media platform is that it’s free to join and you can market your products/services to a wide range of people you ordinarily may not come across at a relatively low cost. Look at all the sponsored posts on Facebook and Instagram for example. 99.9% of the time you wouldn’t have heard about that business/service/solution if that ad had not come your way. How can you create the same attention for what you’re offering? Plus, you can pre-select your target market and increase the chances of getting someone to buy into what you’re offering.
Transportation: We all know that the public transport system isn’t great, so if you have a car why not turn it into a source of income? Uber Nigeria is looking for partners to help grow their business network. They take care of finding customers and payments, so no physical cash is handled, you just need to make your car available. There are also a few creative solutions people have come up with to make car pooling easier. Many opportunities to explore here.
Housing: Perhaps you have a spare room in your house/flat or a residential property that you haven’t been able to get a tenant for? Airbnb is looking for partners to host guests with nightly rates ranging from $30/night for a room to over $100/night for a one-bedroom apartment (depending on the location of course). Make that empty space work for you!
Agriculture: I know that this is a massive sector, but opportunities here actually go beyond farming. Look at the steps involved in getting the product from the farm to your hands. Did you know that up to 70% of the country’s agricultural produce gets wasted before it even gets to a market? What can you do to reduce this? How can you add value to the process? There are some companies that convert fresh fruits into dried form which are then packaged and sold as snacks. What fruits grow in your environs? Can you connect farmers to end buyers and charge a commission? The options are quite vast.
Services: It doesn’t all have to be about physical products as there are a host of services you can offer. Look at the niche you’re interested in and identify the gaps/problems/what’s not working and create a solution to fix the problem, package it and sell it as a value-added service. It could be anything from training, facility management, event planning, to providing day care/after school services for the children in your neighbourhood.
Traditional investments: If you’re not necessarily business inclined, you can still put your money in the traditional sources of investments such as Treasury Bills (minimum investment value of N10,000), fixed deposits, mutual funds, etc. which will give you steady – though not dramatic– returns. You can always ‘top up’ your investment amount as your finances improve.
I hope this has got you thinking and has helped you see that you have an opportunity to create new sources of income beyond the norm.
Open your mind and get creative!