Want to find out how to support your friend who’s going out on a limb starting their own business, blog or side hustle?
I’m going to be REALLY honest here and tell you that starting a side hustle (or your own business) isn’t for everyone! Not everyone wants the long hours, weird schedules, self-doubt, unpredictable pay, cold calling, etc… I know, I just made that sound SO glamourous you can’t wait to sign up! Plenty of people are very content working for someone else. They like having predictable hours and pay and knowing exactly what’s expected of them! Owning their own business isn’t part of their vision and that’s perfectly fine!
There’s NOTHING wrong with either choice. One does not make you innately braver or smarter. Everyone has their own calling and purpose. And everyone is fired up by something different when it comes to work. Hopefully though, we are ALL fired up about helping the people we love and care about pursue their dreams (whatever they may be). So, with the help of my followers and friends on social media here are 15 ways you can support your friend’s side hustle (14 are completely FREE to you)!
1. Like (Better Yet Love)
Your likes and other interactions on social media are VERY valuable! Far more than you may know! Social media doesn’t share everything with everyone. When you like someone else’s content you boost its chances of reaching more people and even reaching new people!
Most businesses are very reliant upon reaching people. Helping get your friend’s content in front of more people creates more opportunity for them. This means a greater chance at success! Your simple click is spreading the word, you’re helping them advertise!
Not only that but you’re also encouraging your friend and bolstering their confidence! It’s such and easy thing to do and has an enormous impact! If you’re feeling really eager check in on their business pages daily or weekly and like their content. Because, remember, you aren’t seeing it all!
Support Your Friend Pro-Tip:
Facebook prefers all the other emoticons over “like” so for an added boost try clicking love, sad, wow or angry. These will help your friend out even more!
If likes are the cake comments are the icing! There are few things I love more than responding to comments on my social media (or my blog). You may think that leaving a comment is a nuisance or seems self-involved! NOT true! We care, like really REALLY CARE what our readers, viewers and customers think! Comments are sometimes the motivator we need to keep going! Nothing makes me feel better than receiving comments telling me I’ve helped someone! And I’m not alone!
Plus, comments of 4 words (not emojis) or more bolsters our views on social media significantly! So, comment away!!!
Support Your Friend Pro-Tip:
Unless you want to damage the reputation of the person who’s content you’re commenting on consider keeping criticism or correction private. Send them a direct message (DM) or email with comments that could be viewed by others as negative! Don’t take the chance of damaging their credibility.
There is no greater social media seal of approval than a share (or re-tweet)! You can share their website, entire business page, or a single post. All are beneficial and appreciated! Often there are 1-click buttons that allow you to do this quickly and easily!
Again, since you aren’t going to see everything they post due to social media algorithms you can go to their page and share from there. It’s also good to know that your friends and followers aren’t seeing everything you post either so feel free to re-share the same content repeatedly. There may be some overlap with your closest friends and family, but you’ll also reach new people each time!
Support Your Friend Pro-Tip:
If someone you care about is sharing content, you can (and should) like, comment and share this too. It will help the content get even further reach! Don’t think that because your sister already liked it and shared you shouldn’t! It’s the exact opposite! The more this happens the more ALL their content is shown.
Basically, social media is a giant popularity contest. Make people you care about VERY popular! It’s a HUGE help and costs nothing!
4. Use Their Links
Does your friend have a blog or website? Do they offer links to a 3rd party seller? Usually people who are linked to a 3rd party seller will have a page called “Products I Love” (or something similar) and a disclosure that they are an “affiliate”. So, take a look, are they linked to Target or Amazon or some other company? If so, use their links to connect to that company!
You can often buy anything from the company website and they will get credit (or even commission). If you’re an online shopper this is a great way to support your favorite online content creators! The best part is your merchandise does NOT cost more and you still check out on your own account. But your friend will get rewarded in some way for your shopping activity. Support your friend by using their links when you make purchases!
5. Click On Their Ads
This is another great way to support online creators like bloggers without spending a dime!
If they have ads on their site, they just might be getting paid by the click. It might be a penny and it might be a dime but over time it all adds up! So, when you head to your favorite websites and blogs you can click on the ads and put a little coin in their pockets!
Let’s say one of the ads is for something you want though. By all means, buy it! Again, you won’t pay more but your friend will likely get commission!
Support Your Friend Pro-Tip
If you have the time, click around the site the ad takes you too. Sometimes there is a bonus payment if the site is open longer or investigated more thoroughly. I sometimes do this while I’m watching tv at night. Why not, I can make someone a little extra money for basically nothing! I’m all about it!
6. Buy Their Product or Service
If you have a friend that’s selling something, support your friend and consider buying their product! Especially if you already use something similar or the exact same thing!
If you already use high end face cleanser and your friend sells Rodan & Fields, Arbonne or Beauty Counter why haven’t you considered becoming her customer? I could go on about this for DAYS! There is no reason not to support your friend’s business if they are selling something of similar quality at a similar cost. And, NO, you should NOT ask for a discount unless you are doing something in exchange!
Things You Can Offer in Exchange For a Discount (Ideas Only)
- Offer to host a party (you’ll get a discount automatically for this).
- If you work in a similar industry offer to hand out cards or samples or do some sort of advertising.
- Offer to do taxing legwork for your friend.
- Arrange a barter, a discount on your service or product for one on theirs.
Just because your friend works for themselves doesn’t mean they can afford to give discounts. They are paying their bills just like you and this is their livelihood. That said, there’s no reason not to spend your hard earned dollars with them rather than a perfect stranger or corporate giant!
7. Post Their Products or Services on Social Media
If your friend sells a product or service (especially if you’re a customer) tell your other friends about it! Brag on them! The loudest and easiest way to do this is to post about it on social media!
The more you post the more likely it is to be seen. You can even ask for pictures of their products that you can share. If you don’t really understand their business or don’t know what to say about it? Ask them to write a couple posts for you that you can copy and paste onto your page! I never mind creating content and emailing it to others to post for me! No one would! It’s free advertising!
Give it a try, reach out to someone you know with a side hustle and ask them to prepare something for your social media! I’m sure they’ll be happy to do it!
8. Leave a Review
A lot of businesses are made or broken by reviews, so leave one!
This is another area people underestimate. I used to think “no one cares what I think” when it came to reviews. I felt like leaving them was a bit self-important. Now I know better! Unfortunately, a lot of times when there are few reviews people assume the product or service is just “meh”. You know, a little lack luster, and nothing to get excited about!
If your friend is taking time out of their busy lives to build a business or side hustle, I doubt they feel “meh” about it! And, you shouldn’t either! So, take a minute to leave a review! They go a long way in creating credibility, which is all important in any business!
Support Your Friend Pro-Tip:
Just make it a habit to leave reviews! All businesses thrive on them! This is one of the best ways to help small businesses. Often people choose to patronize larger companies because they feel the quality and service is reliable. Not knowing what to expect is a significant deterrent. Reviews change that and help level the playing field!
9. Hand Out Cards
Get some business cards from your friend and hand them out! Especially if you work in a similar industry! Handing out business cards can be a great way to generate business or at least awareness to your friend’s venture.
Find out from them who their target customer is and be sure to be ready with a card when you meet them. It’s even better if you talk up your friend when you hand out their card. Let the person you’re giving it to know why your friend is the best person to do business with in their field. Are they an expert? Are they honest and trustworthy? Do they go the extra mile? Share their finer qualities and generate some excitement about doing business with them!
10. Host a Party
This can be especially helpful if your friend has joined an MLM! What’s an MLM you may ask. Well, it stands for multi-level marketing. Most of us automatically think of Tupperware when we think of MLM’s . This is the original home shopping experience!
I know you might be thinking that you don’t know enough people, or no one will come if you have a party. To be honest, that’s my life! Often you can host an online party or have a component of your party be online which helps. But, even if your party is a bust it helps your friend because it gets their name out to your whole invite list! And, the worst thing that will happen is you’ll have to spend a couple hours alone with your friend!
Just host the party already!
11. Host a Meet & Greet or Networking Party
If you have a friend who just started a business, consider getting them in front of the rest of your network. Like it or not, a lot of business is done through relationships. So, making the introductions and helping your friend meet more people could really benefit her business!
Make it simple, host a wine night or a game night. This doesn’t have to be an official event complete with suits! Just be sure to tell your friend that you welcome her “shop talk”. Be sure to mention to your friend’s business or area of expertise to other guests when the opportunity arises. And of course, make sure that you introduce her to everyone present.
On the other hand, you could make this a very formal networking event. Ask all your guests to bring someone who has their own business or side hustle and get to know each other. Exchange cards and contact information! This works great for people in service industries as well. There is a lot of client cross over between personal trainers, massage therapist, estheticians, and hair stylists for example. Invite them all!
12. Give Them Referrals
Maybe you aren’t in the market for their product or service and you genuinely can’t host a party for them! That’s ok! Can you give them referrals? If so, please do!
The best way to go about this is to give them a list of contacts and let the people on the list know you’ve done this. It helps bridge the gap and makes everyone more comfortable.
You can also make sure that your friend knows what you’re comfortable with regarding your referral list. Clarifying that it is meant for their eyes only and you expect no hard sales is reasonable.
You shouldn’t assume that your friends and family aren’t interested. If you aren’t comfortable asking, let your friend ask herself!
13. Tell Them About Events & Opportunities
If you know that your community has an annual craft show and your bestie just started making and selling homemade soap. Let her know!
It can be very helpful to keep your eyes peeled for events near you that your friend might be interested in participating in! Online business owners, bloggers, MLM representatives and home crafters all enjoy and benefit from craft shows, networking events, classes and basically any chance they have to get their name out there! Don’t make assumptions about what may be of interest!
One of the best things about this tip is that you can get a visit from a friend if you live far away. Oftentimes people can justify travel expenses for business reasons and even write it off on their taxes! If you have a friend who lives far away and just started a side hustle this might be a great way to get her to come for a visit!
14. Talk Them Up
Are you shouting from the rooftops that your awesome friend just started her own business? Umm… why not?!?!
This is one of the best things you can do for them! Don’t underestimate the power of good word of mouth! A person’s reputation precedes them. Your good word will open doors and provide opportunities for them. They will have instant credibility and be more warmly received if you speak highly of them to everyone you can.
Plus, you will be creating positive energy around their venture. Putting those uplifting thoughts, words and vibes out definitely won’t hurt!
15. Cheer Them On
I saved the best for last! This is the single MOST important thing you can do for your friend! Cheer them on! Believe in them!
There will be all sorts of nay-sayers. People who claim to be realists and go around with a pin bursting everyone’s bubble! Don’t be one of them! Even if you don’t quite understand what your friend is doing or why support your friend!
Send them text messages and emails or call them on the phone and ask about their new venture! Share in their excitement! Celebrate their successes, remind them of their vision when they are faltering and dry their tears when they struggle. But most of all, tell them you’re proud of them and that you believe in them! It makes ALL the difference in the world!
Support your friend or loved ones who are building a business or side hustle by sharing this far and wide!
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On a personal note: I’d like to thank my family, in-laws, and friends for all their help, support and understanding.