Matt Heltzel

College Student Builds Online Side Hustle



Looking to build an online side hustle? Today's interview is with a college student who is building her online side hustle. Matt, the CMO here at Legendary Marketer interviews Melanie. Grab all the details below. Here is the transcription for this episode:

Matt:  Looking to build an online side hustle? What's up everybody? Happy Monday. I am Matt and I'm guest hosting today. I'm the CMO here at Legendary and excited to bring you another awesome guest to our Wake Up Legendary show. If you're newer to our community, we go live every single Monday through Friday at 10am. Eastern and what we do is we bring on people in our community for people who have taken our training, and we bring them onto our show and we unpack what did they do to find success how are they creating content, how, what's their style of business that they're running if they're running one of the core four business models, whether that's affiliate marketing, digital courses, coaching and consulting or events and masterminds? Those are our core four business models. So if you're newer, welcome, and we're excited to have you here, sit back, relax and enjoy the show today and come back every single Monday through Friday at 10am. Eastern, because we bring on guests, virtually every single day has happened for over two years now. So without further ado, if you all can give me a little hand clap emoji just like to welcome our guest for the day. She is a college student building an online side hustle. Her name is Sydney, Sydney what's going on? 

Sydney: Hey, how are you? I'm good. How are you?

Matt: I'm good. I'm excited to have you on the show. Tell us like where are you? tuning in from?

Sydney: Right now I'm in New York. So I'm at my house. But I actually got back last night from an internship in Boston. So cool. I was up. It was good. It was good. Very cool. It's awesome.

Matt:  I like both of those places. I was just in New York. As in we visited Manhattan last week. And a few years back, we visited Boston and I just like the history and the feel of both of those cities. 

Sydney: Yeah, yeah, I like Boston a little better than New York. I don't live in the city of New York City, it can be a lot.

Matt:  Yeah, for sure. For sure. Well, cool. Um, so you are still in college still working through that we decided to hop on and supplement your college degree and everything you're doing with some entrepreneurial stuff online. Tell us how you got you interested? First of all, I'm curious. And then also just you know, how did you find legendary?

Sydney: Yeah, so I actually found Legendary through another affiliate and TikTok name was Taylor. But so I just kept popping up on my page. And I was like, maybe I'll check it out. But sort of the reason I was interested in the first place, so I'm like, I'm studying electrical engineering at Brown right now and I'm super passionate. about it and I want to work in biotech and I love all that stuff. But I always found myself looking. I was like, oh, I need to find the highest paying job like how can I need to like set like, I never want to travel the world and I want I want I sort of big dreams for myself both like personally and like, for my career. I wanted an online side hustle.  And I kept finding like, oh, like, I don't want to be worried about that. I want to be able to maybe take a break and travel the world. I don't want to sort of just be sort of stuck in that life. I don't want to feel stuck in my life at all. So I was just sort of, I was like, Oh, why not? It's a seven day 15 Day Challenge. Like why not do it? So I started it and then I got the prints and stuff but I actually took a little break before I actually ended up starting like actually making content. I just kind of got busy finals and all of that stuff. But then over the summer I started at the end of June creating content. I started just on tick tock but then I sort of went to other platforms and stuff but it kind of blew up a little bit. So it was really exciting. And it's been great like supplemental income. And it's such a cool concept of passive income and sort of like we're waking up and we're like, oh, I have money. Right? It's pretty cool.

Matt:  Yeah. That's hilarious. Yeah. And it has grown pretty quick. Like you're doing a really good job and it seems like it's just doing really well so that's really cool. And so you got on Tik Tok, you're at like 10 that 11,000 followers or something? When did you start creating content? Cause you found our challenge a long time ago?

Sydney: Yeah, yeah, I found it in like, like last April or May like that. I started so I actually started creating content in the fitness niche at first. Um, so I was just like making out. videos and stuff like that and trying to promote fitness where, but I was sort of I wasn't having that much success within that. Because I think I mean, if someone made a sale, it was like for $20 and I would get in. It was sort of difficult for me. And I just wasn't getting as many views I wasn't getting that much. So then I was like, why not? Like I was seeing a lot of people who had success with legendary, and I plan on doing more than just being an affiliate for legendary have started like making a course and I'm excited to sort of like see where all of this can bring me but I started creating content, I think the end of June for legend for legendary, so.

Matt:  Yeah, yeah, I think a lot of people love their experience with us and that's part of the reason why they either start or become an affiliate of ours. And then as they start to learn skills, and the reason I think is because it's just so obvious in front of their face, maybe I don't know. But as people start to build skills, yeah, they go on and they create courses and a guy from 2020. I recently saw that he just hit what's called a two comma Club Award with ClickFunnels, which means you basically have done a million dollars in sales and using a ClickFunnels funnel. And, and, yeah, and that had nothing to do with us. It didn't benefit our company at all. He wasn't affiliated at one point. I don't know if he is still or whatever, I don't know. But I learned some skills and then was like, hey, you know what, like, I can figure this out. I would like to create my own course and kind of be my own business owner a little there's a lot of hassles and stuff that come with that but but for some people, it's it's not satisfying enough to not be the person creating the courses and so it's like, Hey, I'm gonna I want to I want a new challenge. I want to turn the next corner so that's cool. A lot of people do that with coaching to the Facebook group and do some group coaching or one on one coaching and stuff like that. And then, you know, one of the I think one of the really cool pieces to this is people will then I you know, a lot of times people think in the very short term, but over the long term, I've seen people from this industry and in talking and more like 510 15 years start random companies or for instance in my case, my wife started a therapy practice. And it's this known thing that in the therapy world if you start your own practice, it's just so hard to get clients to get peep Totti like how do people find you? Where do you go, you go to networking events or something I don't know. And I was able to take the skills that I had built. You know, I took my first Google Ads course about nine or 10 years ago and took that knowledge and took everything that I learned and I love her her therapy practice and she has 10 therapists now hired under her she's got multiple offices and her business is just booming and she works like 20 hours a week. And it's one of those things where people really don't really realize there's just so much value in learning digital skills and the places you can apply them are crazy. Anyway, a little bit of a rant there but wanted to go back to like your May to July thing, your little delay. You're feeling it out and you're creating content. First of all, I wanted to say that's such a valuable thing for us. For you to share with us because there's so many people who go through that same exact, like incubation period, right? Where they're just kind of feeling things, figuring it out, Miss people out there who are trying to sell them additional things and they're like, Well, come on, hurry up. What are you waiting for, you know like, Hey, you're never going to change, start. Well, you know, whatever, start shaming people and I just think people need to feel it out a little bit. So that's cool. And I'm thankful for sharing that. When you get on TikTok. You were doing some stuff in the fitness niche. You're in the make money online niche now. Have you created content before? Were you mostly a consumer or, like what was your social media experience like before that?

Sydney: Yeah, so I mean, I like I had like personal accounts where like, I'll post like once a month or whatever like on my Instagram and I had TikToks I didn't really make TikTok so I just kind of watched dogs I was always like, people that make TikToks are weird, but but but so I had never really made any real types of content. I had done a little bit of advertising for not not digital advertising, just like posters and stuff from like, dance at college and stuff. But that's basically all the marketing experience that I had before. So I didn't really have any experience in either creating content or marketing. 

Matt: Yeah, like just I haven't really done much at all. Which is like most people so and then you get you go and you start creating content. For there's a lot of people here who are creating content every day. How am I going to grow followers? How am I going to get followers? Do you have any tips or like what your content creation process has been like and do you have tips for people who are just starting and just getting going?

Sydney: Absolutely. Well, first, it took me probably like, like, I was getting used shoes for like, I was probably getting maybe 200 views for like, like weeks and it's so frustrating. I was getting some lead submissions and I was like, so frustrated and it's hard to keep going when you aren't seeing results. And I think that's when a lot of people are like, I'm giving up. I don't know what to do. But my first piece of advice is to keep going and push past that and just wait and keep creating content. Like you have to really believe in yourself. Because if you don't believe in yourself, and you're like, I can't do this, what am I even doing here then? Who else is gonna believe you? So that's my first piece of advice. My second piece of advice is to look at other people's content that is successful so you can kind of like scroll through other affiliates or whatever, of whatever company that you're promoting, and be like, Oh, like that video did really well. How can I put my own twist on that? Or like, oh, like why did that do what are people commenting about and sort of just try to apply that to your content?

Matt: Yes, totally. 100% Yes. And even like searching through hashtags, right? Like a lot of people don't realize that when you want to go create real great content. You can go look through certain hashtags on certain channels. And, for instance, I'm gonna see if I can pull this open. I don't know if I can, but there's a lot of like videos in the I've researched the dating niche a lot like relationships and like dating advice and stuff like that because it's a very fascinating like, I don't know it's just a fascinating niche. And then see if I can find like, here, it'd be available. This is just kind of a funny one. I'll pull this up and let me know if you can see my screen. Okay. This Mr. Healthy Love is just kind of like, I don't know, it's just awkward and funny. You know, he's got a free ebook, right? He's a dating life coach, subscribe to my YouTube. Alright, so fair warning, everybody. I have not clicked or followed this. Link before. Okay, five mistakes men and women make when attracting the opposite sex. Okay, so is he relationship material? So, this is kind of his lead magnet that got going in the dating niche. Oh, I guess you can see that. Hang on. There we go. Yeah. So he's got his little lead magnet here free ebook, blah, blah, blah. But if I was in the dating niche, I would come in here and start to see multiple hash tactics. Like, oh, dating advice. Okay, interesting. Let's look at dating advice. And start to just see what's getting viewed right. Start to see videos that I could stitch to see videos that I could even like, live off of which is something like this, maybe. Let's see. That's kind of what you're talking about, which is going out and finding videos that are like, oh, there's nothing proprietary about making that video. You know, I could say, you know, Hey, did you know that if you give it to the side, it'll make you more attractive during dating. Here's five things you know, and like I'm not in the dating niche, but I could you you could probably make that video and in the next five minutes pretty easily. And I keep that and people sometimes don't connect that. Nowadays on social media, sometimes when people get started, they need to look into the camera and tell somebody or put it on the screen. Exactly. They're selling like, here's what I do, too. But that's not how marketing works. marketing works based on curiosity and fun and being playful and being likable. And especially on social media and these 15 Second 62nd clips, it's like, okay, I have a very short amount of time to capture somebody's attention and give them something interesting. Why, you know, that guy starts off. He's got 8.5 million plays on that video. And it's 11 seconds. Actually here. Let me pull it. Let me pull this up one more time, because I didn't realize that was 11 seconds and that's kind of absurd. Yeah, I mean, are you kidding me? Like, I just don't think people realize. Now that was made. Exactly almost exactly two years ago. Here I am stumbling around. On TikTok I found this video with 8 million views. And this guy is also now verified on Tik Tok with 7 million followers, and we're gonna do things that make you more attractive right now. Kind of has a full blown you know, following and everything. But back to the original point. That's an 11 second video, what you're saying is, hey, go search around, go looking and researching and figuring out you know, what are the style videos and maybe that goes maybe you want to find what he's doing more recently. Maybe the algorithms are a little different than two years ago, who knows? But accumulating videos that you know, are not necessarily proprietary. You can't create, you can't recreate a video about that guy's life. Or if you have a video that's talking about like, Hey, here's my journey and it's like, I clearly can't just rip that video. You know, it's like, I can't recreate that. But I can recreate edutainment style videos, videos that are more curiosity based. Has that been where most of your success has come?

Sydney: Yeah. Most of the videos that I had one video that blew up to like 20 or 750,000 views, which was what I can't even imagine that many people, but that was from so like, there is this one audio that I was noticing that kept blowing up on people's pages. And then I also noticed that when people were talking about promoting their favorite companies like and listing those companies that a bunch of those were really successful. So I put those two together, and it's very successful.

Matt:  It's so smart, so smart. You mean like when people are like, you can promote Levi's jeans or like, did you know you could promote Levi's jeans or like, you know, stuff like that?

Sydney: Yeah. I was like, like, did you know that you can make like, like a couple of $1,000 a week or a month promoting like Nike HelloFresh Lululemon, etc, but you keep scrolling.

Matt:  Yeah, right. Right, right. Yeah. And, and, yeah, and those videos are always like, super short ones like that. And they're super short. They move kind of quick, but there's a lot of text on the screen because you get flying as people read them. So funny. I mean, you know, in the next couple of months, that strategy will eventually fizzle. Because they will TikTok will kind of catch on that like, oh, okay, figuring out how to game the algorithm a little bit. But it's just that strategy has been working for like two years. And for new people, here's what I mean by that. To get more views, so here's the simple here's the simplest thing. Views lead to engagement, engagement leads to followers followers, leads to leads or opt-ins and leads leads to customers. And so it naturally follows that getting some form of views on your videos is pretty important in building a following and getting noticed, right? There's a lot of people out there who, who they say you know, views doesn't necessarily making making money and to a certain extent that that is true to a certain extent, but a lot of people say most of the people who are making money on the internet right now and 2022 are getting hella views on their videos. You know, like, that's the truth. And especially people who are growing big followings that are going to be that are going to pay them for the next year or two or three down the road. So I just think, for people who are newer and they're like, how do I make the connection about these views? You keep talking about views and how do I get more views and grow a following? You start by going out and, you know, kind of chumming the water. That's what Dave says. In the blueprints. You Chum the water and you start to feel around and do some research. What are people saying? What are they? What are they creating? And you put together pieces like a viral sound like you did and things that have been working for other people like you did? And when you start to do that, you know it might be call it luck call it odd call it God whatever, but one of your videos will eventually take off and go viral and and you'll get a lot of leads and a lot of followers and that's when things can that's when the ball can start rolling. So from a content creation standpoint, are you creating content a couple times a day once a day like what's how you have shifted your content creation strategy? Now that you've got all these followers oh, maybe we might have lost her. Hang on. All right. We're gonna see if we can get her back to where I was? Oh, yeah, I was just asking her how her content creation strategy worked. Oh, my connection is I just got a little kick from her and we'll send her back in. Sometimes the iPhone will overheat and we'll see if we can. We'll see if we can bring her in. But I wanted to say for any of you who are starting to maybe just come in or we're starting to create content. One of the most powerful things that you can possibly do to learn how to start creating videos? How do I just hit posts on these things? You can go to something like And you can just do a search. It's really easy like if I was in the writing niche, I could type and apparently, I go to this guy who's got 2 million views and fixing separation anxiety stops resource guarding. Like this is probably not a super proprietary piece of content that this guy's created for fixing separation. Looking around. Like your dog twice. Dog advice is very specific to dog training. You'll find lots of videos, five facts about your dog, right little things like that, that you can probably recreate or just repurpose, you don't have to recreate it for Batum but you can you can repurpose those you can repurpose those style videos and it will give you ideas of how to create content and also give you ideas about what's working and what's not in the online space or on the in the Tiktok algorithm. Right so introducing dogs how to introduce dogs right this isn't where he sees them exit 300,000 views though if you go over to unsafe for dog look, this has 284,000 views, tons of likes. And when you get a video that's that viral. There's a good chance that the reason that that went viral was because people sat on that video and just watched it over and over and over and over again. That's why it's all right. We have Sydney back.

Sydney: Yes. Sorry about that. I got kicked out

Matt:  No sweat. Well, I saw the training was out. I mean I saw your message and so I just kicked you out so you can come back in and usually that fixes it. So what's the what's the what I was gonna ask you was what is your content creation strategy, like how many times do you post in a day do you just kind of post randomly? Are you much more structured?

Sydney: Yeah. So it's kind of like it's kind of tricky to figure that out. Find a good balance. Because at first I was like, because people are like, I tried to post three times a day. And at first that was really hard because I was like I have to make content three times a day, like what are you talking about? But I kind of have like, what you can do is you can make content and then put it in your drafts. So once you have like a ton of drafts. It's super easy to post them by try to post three times a day. I think in the past couple weeks I've been posting two times a day more often but three times today. It's been my life goal.

Matt: Yeah, I think I think anywhere in that range. I always tell people, you know, if you've got a goal of three times a day and you can only get one but you can get that one and it's gonna be really good. Get that one. You know what I mean? Just get that really good quality one. And it's kind of a numbers game. He posts three videos a day, you get 20 of them out per week or so 20 and 30 per week. And there might not be a lot of rhyme or reason about which ones go viral. It sometimes surprises you. But eventually, one or two of them just hit you, put you hit posts and it's like oh my gosh is taking off. I got a lot of comments on this thing. This is crazy. And there isn't. You know, you could recreate an exact video from somebody else who's done one and it might flop and then you create one, a different one and it just pops off and takes off and there's no real rhyme or reason at all to it. 

Sydney: I posted a video that did really well and sometimes it also does like sometimes two videos that are the exact same don't perform the same. 

Matt: Not at all. Not at all. Yeah, it's so vital but that's part of it. As part of the algorithm that's part of getting lots and lots of views and followers is Yeah, is getting enough content out there to even see what sticks. So you're also creating for one to ask about this, like looking into creating another course or helping maybe create a course or something. You know, one of the best things that I've ever seen. affiliate marketers do is build a real, basically build a course. But um, but not a full court sort of a mini course and give it away for free. Now here's why can I give you like my best kept secret on this? Yes. Okay. So for people who go from let's say where you're at 10,000 followers and go to 100-200 500,000 followers, right? One of the best things that I've ever seen them do that has exploded their growth is taking that course and making it a freebie. And basically what you do is you create a mini course now if you're brand new and you're watching the show and you're like I haven't even ever posted a video, just ignore everything I'm about to say or store it in the back of your mind. For a later day. Take notes. You create a course and you say hey, here's my $97 course. Alright, this is a nice $97 Social media miracle. Okay, and what you do is you say hey for a limited time, you can get access to my social media miracle course for just $97 and you post that or I'm sorry for free my $97 course I'll give it to you for free. Go to the link in my bio right or point to the US a green screen and point to the link in your bio or something and you start generating leads and inside of that. As soon as they opt-in. You say hey, I'm about to email you info on how to get access to the course in the meantime. And then this is your bridge page where you have an offer to whatever affiliate courses you're offering or whatever affiliate products, whatever you're offering, and then you give them that free course and embedded throughout that free course or more of your affiliate offers. Right and you can do that in click funnels. ClickFunnels allows you to create a course and you can post the whole thing here's why that's so great for you. Number one, you're not dealing with any merchant accounts, you're not even collecting payment which is a beautiful thing. Most people don't realize once you get into selling your own course you start dealing with chargebacks and refunds and all that stuff. It gets messy because of digital in a digital courses business. You've got to keep a very clean merchant account. You start to get refunds or chargebacks. And your merchant account can go away and you can get to a place where you're literally not able to collect payments. So that's the first thing is giving something away for free is so much more of a simple way to go about that whole thing. Does that make sense? Yeah, yeah. Totally. And then and then from there, too, you can take that and eventually someday you could sell it like Calvin Hill used to give his away for free and now he's just like, hey, basically to opt in to my list. You have to pay me $10. It's the most absurd thing ever, but it works because he's built a really valuable lead magnet. And you know, people don't underestimate their ability to create something valuable that people will really really want. And so anyway, just my two cents, just my thoughts. Is that helpful? Or what comes to mind when you hear that? 

Sydney: It seems so smart to do that. I've seen a couple people that have like free courses and you're kind of like, why are they doing right? That makes so much sense because it's also like the sort of idea of giving people value and giving people more than what they're paying for. So I think it's basically genius.

Matt:  You know what it is? Here's the final piece to that. We also track people. So on our end as a as a as somebody who watches our back end affiliate stats and all that kind of stuff. affiliates who do that they make more money affiliate marketers should do that they make more money, and they convert at higher rates. And here's why. Because they're not just pushing people to sell somebody something. They're actually giving real value upfront. And so as soon as it's natural human psychology to want to reciprocate that, hey, you gave me something you didn't have to give me that for free. That was really nice. Let me give you something in return. And it's very basic marketing. It's sort of like Gary Vee talks about he talks about Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook, give value, give value, give value, ask for the sale, right, not the other way around. And so when you give all of that value upfront, then what you have is trust. You have a bit of Hey, okay, I learned something from you. What you gave me was valuable and helped me and I'm thankful for that awesome. I want to purchase How do I buy where I buy something, and not just on the front end conversions, but also on the back end higher ticket things are more likely to buy coaching, more likely to buy blueprints and all of that stuff. It's really just a it's a it's a powerful way to go about building goodwill in your list and and then you know, it's the difference between let's say, in five or 10 years from now, it's a difference in having a list that's sort of resentful because you've done nothing but pitch them since day one versus a email list of people who are excited and still fired up to hear from you because you just deliver value and that's who you are to them. And it's cool, it's a cool thing. So going forward, what's the plan? You're gonna do that you're gonna you're gonna work on your and create content. What else goes into school still?

Sydney: Yeah, that's sort of the plan. I think it'll be I mean, this summer was like a little bit more relaxed than the school year. That's why I was probably easier to make content. Probably once like, get back into my electrical engineering work. It'll be a little bit harder to find as much time but the plan is sort of to stay consistent. I was also sort of like, looking into starting like another account and another niche that like I was more like passionate about because I think this was like, like this is a good way I think I can keep building on it. But I think I could also bring it to another niche, which is I think could be cool. And I think when you're super passionate about something it shows and that also be valuable. I'll definitely like start looking into making a free course because that's like a stroke of genius. So, but yeah, I think the biggest thing and advice is to stay consistent and to not give up and to just not. Oh, I'm not seeing results like I'm just gonna stop because there's no way that you can succeed if you do that. 

Matt:  Totally, totally. And, and I just wanted to say to, you know, if you do go and go down that whole road of creating a free course or something like that, don't don't let what you just said as as, as advice towards people take your own advice. Don't Don't overwhelm yourself. Try and recreate something that's world class. Mind blowing. Usually those free courses are most powerful when that's a simple idea communicated in one or two or three videos maximum. It shouldn't be this 10 module. Oh my god long thing. It should be like a 15 to 25 minute lesson with a little PDF guide where they can take notes and they're just like, wow, this was so simple and so clear. And I understand exactly what the call to action is. I need to go purchase this if I want to learn more, and that's it. You know, keeping it simple and keeping it stripped down. I love the idea of creating stuff in other niches and Sydney we would love to hear from you if you do that. One of the things for us that is actually hard to track is when people go out and create stuff and other niches. It we just have no way of knowing that right so it's not like we're stalking people 24/7 All their social media accounts or something. It's like lots of people from Legendary take their take their education, and we never hear from them again. And they go on to creating all sorts of random weight loss niches and all this stuff and have lots of success. And we we just rarely hear back from them. So we'd love to hear from you if you do that. And it would it would make our day we'd love to feature you on wakeup legendary and feature that. Absolutely, absolutely. It's so cool. Well, Sydney. Thanks for coming on. Should people follow you on TikTok or Instagram? Or where do you prefer?

Sydney: Either or maybe I mean TikTok is my most viewed or so.

Matt: I'll put them both up. Awesome.

Sydney: Awesome. Thanks for having me.

Matt: Yeah, thanks for coming on the show Sydney. All right, so you can follow Sydney on TikTok @successwithsyd_ Pretty simple. Nothing crazy. We're here live every single Monday through Friday 10am. Eastern I'm hosting most of the week Joanne all hosts on Friday. This has been a powerful episode. I hope it's been a powerful episode. It's powerful. For me. And hopefully you might want to watch this back if you've never actually, if you've never actually thought about creating a little free mini course or something like that to give away on the front end of your marketing. Giving away little freebies is just a great way to build goodwill into your audience. Find Sydney on TikTok. We'll back here tomorrow, same time same place. 

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