5 Ways to Get Paid Multiple Times for the Same Work

When most people think about making money, they only think in terms of a job. You go to work, you get paid, and maybe—if you have a little surplus—you invest for retirement.

5 Ways to Get Paid Multiple Times for the Same Work

Photo Courtesy of ©iStockphoto.com/GreenStock

If you follow this paradigm, you can succeed financially, but it is much more difficult. In fact, most people who take this approach end up living paycheck-to-paycheck and don’t have enough saved for retirement.

There’s a better way.

If you are going to get ahead financially, you need to understand—and fully appreciate—the difference between active and passive income. Most likely, this is not a new distinction for you, but it is an important one.

Active income is what you already know and understand. It’s what you get when someone hires you to do a job. You do the work; you get paid. But only once. In other words, the income is non-recurring.

In my world, this includes public speaking, hosting conferences, one-on-one coaching, and consulting. I do the work in exchange for a fee. I am essentially trading my time for a one-time payment. Currently, about 20 percent of my income is active income.

Passive income is just the opposite. It is what happens when customers pay you over and over again for the same work—work you only did once. In other words, it is recurring.

For me, this includes book royalties, affiliate commissions, course sales, and monthly membership fees. I am trading my time for an ongoing revenue stream. Currently, about 80 percent of my income is passive.

By the way, if you want to get technical, there is really no such thing as passive income. I still have to occasionally refresh the product, adjust the marketing, provide customer support, etc. It’s just a lot less work than active income.

When I launched out on my own two years ago this month, my goal was to create multiple streams of income. Or to be more precise, multiple streams of passive income. Currently, I have nine streams of income; six of them are passive. (I plan to write about these in another post.)

The key to financial success is to figure out how to transform your active income into passive income.

The good news is you can do this even if you have a job. In fact, it is imperative you do so if you are going to move beyond being Just Over Broke (J.O.B.) and get ahead financially.

Here are five ways you can move from producing active income to producing passive income:

  1. Could you turn your expertise into a product? Yes, you are an expert. There are things you know or know how to do that you take for granted. You assume every one knows what you know. They don’t. Other people would happily pay you for your knowledge. This is what I did with my Writing a Winning Book Proposal e-books.
  2. Could you turn a series of blog posts or podcasts into an e-book or book? People will pay for the convenience of having your content all in one place. Plus, you can incorporate insights you get from reader feedback and take the content to the next level. This is what I did with my Platform book. My blog was my “content lab.”
  3. Could you turn your coaching or consulting into products? When you find yourself providing the same advice over and over again, it’s a candidate for turning it into a product or series of products. This is what I did with my Get Published Course and Platform University. I have a dozen more products like this on the drawing board.
  4. Could you turn a speech into a product? You can record it on video or even audio then turn that into a CD, DVD, or online file you sell. You can add additional value (both perceived and real) by including a transcript and a study guide. This is what I did with my Why Now Is the Best Time Ever to Be an Author video. I plan to also do this with my Platform speech and a few others.
  5. Could you turn a live event into an online training experience? Obviously, you will need to start by recording the event. Then you can turn it into modules with workbooks, transcripts, or other ancillary material and deliver it via a platform like Kajabi.com. This is what my team is doing right now with our SCORRE, Launch, and Platform conferences.

The reason passive income is better is because it scales. It works while you are doing something else—like sleeping! You are not limited by your available time.

While I still do both, I am always thinking about how I can turn my active income opportunities into passive ones, so I can get paid multiple times for the same work. How about you?

Question: What opportunities do you have to turn active income into passive ones? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

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  • Christelle

    This is a such an important topic. I discovered Pat Flynn about 15 months ago and ever since I’ve been obsessed with this question. How can I create some passive income?
    I’ve taken the first step of creating my blog, finding my voice and trying to build a community, but it’s a slow and long process and to be honest I still don’t know how I’ll get there. I just know I have to and I don’t want to give up.
    But you see, finding how you can create something is one thing, how to sell it to enough people is harder. What if I create an eBook tomorrow, who will buy it?
    Thanks for the reminder to keep trying :)
    Have a great weekend.

    • http://harrisonjonathan.wordpress.com/ Jonathan Harrison

      Christelle, I too discovered Pat Flynn and his Smart Passive Income podcast/blog as of late. I am thrilled by his ideas and practical application.
      I say go for your ebook and make it happen! If you create it, and it only sells 25 copies, then you will have sold 25 more than if you never did it at all!
      Your ideas + advice & resources from the likes of Michael & Pat is more than enought for you to be successful!
      Set aside 90 mins to work on it between now and Monday, and I bet you will make some great progress this weekend!

      • Christelle

        Thanks for the encouragement Jonathan, I often need it! I already get up at 5:15 to write for my blog, so finding more time is a stretch, but I’m working on it!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      The great thing about online marketing is that the content itself will help you build an audience. Don’t over-think it. Just start and the path will become clear. I know so many people who are making great incomes today who never thought they could. You can do this!

    • http://www.leahadams.org/ Leah Adams

      Christelle, don’t give up. It is a long slow process for most of us to build community. Hang in there.

    • http://DesignerRobRusso.com/ Designer Rob Russo

      I heard about Pat Flynn and SPI awhile ago but just starting diving in to his content. Similarly, I received the Platform the week it came out (birthday gift from my wife!) but am just now reading it.

      I’m great about coming up with ideas or getting started and then… My turn to block out time and see something thru to the end.

    • Lynn Dean

      You’ve made a smart start! Don’t give up!
      Fourteen years ago I started a small writing project, releasing the content month by month as I wrote it. The second year, I packaged it for sale as a complete program. It took another two or three years to earn back what I’d invested into it, but over the last ten years as I developed a platform and became known in my niche, the product has enjoyed consistent growth. While it would not support me as a single income source, it has become far more than a hobby, helps a lot of people, and is a source of great satisfaction.

      • Christelle

        Thanks for your message, if there’s one thing I want to do is keep going. Years ago I started a cartoon blog then stopped it. Now I’m thinking that if I had continued it I would be a great cartoonist now with a large audience. So whatever happens I am continuing.

    • http://warriormen.com/ Glen Evans

      Christelle, I hear you friend! One thing I did with my product before I started was a Google Adwords search to see how many people searched for my topic. I then created a niche association around it, posted some ads, and when they go there I give them free stuff leading to my product. It takes time, but you can do it.

  • http://personalsuccesstoday.com/ John Richardson

    Great post, Michael. I’ve talked with so many people lately who are either unemployed or underemployed. Many are frustrated, depressed and even bitter about the situation. For many, the whole outlook is another job in their same field. Unfortunately, the reality is, many of those jobs have gone away and are not coming back.

    This is where I tell people about building a platform and recommend your book. I relate my story of blogging for eight years. While I haven’t broken out yet, I have made a consistent extra income over the years. Basically I make about a car payment a month, with ads and affiliate sales.

    I’m really excited about the future. I just released my first Kindle eBook this week, and I’m moving my blog to a new site/template over the weekend. Your platform University has been really helpful, especially the site critiques. The hard part about platform building is figuring out the niche/audience and adjusting the branding to match. Your feedback has been invaluable. While trying new things can be scary and stressful, the outcomes, especially with passive income, can pay huge dividends.

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      John, your “car payment a month” comment makes the hypothetical become concrete. My royalty check makes it possible to buy breath mints every three months. :-)

      • http://personalsuccesstoday.com/ John Richardson

        It’s funny, but almost everytime I mention to someone that I make a “car payment a month,” they get excited about blogging.

        • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

          You should do an e-book, a course, or at least a post on that. It makes it easy for people to visualize and it’s not such a big, hairy, audacious goal.

          • http://personalsuccesstoday.com/ John Richardson

            Actually working on an eBook about goal setting now. This will be one of the examples in the smart goals chapter. Really excited about some of the new goal research. Finally figuring out why some goals are so much easier to achieve than others. (BTW… moved more eBooks in half a day than I sold in 4 years with my paper based book. Kindle is exciting!)

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, John. It’s good to know that you are finding the Member Makeovers helpful. It’s my favorite part of what we do.

      Watching you inspires me. You have what Chet Holmes calls “pig-headed discipline.” Your success is inevitable. Just keep going!

      • http://personalsuccesstoday.com/ John Richardson

        I love Chet Holmes’s book. I tell you, it was only pig headed discipline that got me through the last two weeks. Trying to move a blog to a new host, choose a new template, and ship a book, almost stopped me dead a number of times. Especially trying to choose a blog template… way too many bright and shiny objects out there… not to mention, plugins, tweaks, and upgrades…arrgh

        • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

          Hang in there. You’ve done the hard work!

  • http://www.alslead.com/ Dave Anderson

    It has been a while since I commented. The reason is I have been on my own blogging and building a leadership consulting and development business. But it is all active income.

    My intent has been to create the passive income streams you suggest and I believe in. The tyranny of the urgent has overwhelmed that goal so far. I must get back that focus.

    My site, http://www.alslead.com, is now getting over 4000 visitors a month reading my blogs that are mainly on leadership and I have been at it 13 months. I have an audience that is engaged and growing. It is time to develop my passive income streams.

    Thanks for the kick in the seat. All of us need that sometimes.


    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      Excellent. Can’t wait to see this take off for you, Dave!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      4,000 visitors a month is a great foundation! It took me more than four years to get more than 1,000. You are well on your way to success.

  • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

    Good, sound counsel. I preach. I write. Both can be turned into e-books.

    • http://www.leahadams.org/ Leah Adams

      Go for it! I bet you have good sound cousel to give to others!

  • http://thejoshcollins.com/ Josh Collins

    Ahhh man what a ridiculously AWESOME post MH!!! As I prepare to launch to my first eBook and new site at the end of the month (thejoshcollins.com), I’ve been planning and thinking strategically about this very subject. [To be perfectly honest, I’ve been developing this for quite a while now! The voices of fear can be loud, indeed.]

    But once again, thanks for your leadership!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      You’re welcome, Josh. All the best to you as you launch your new site and first e-book!

  • http://twitter.com/junejewell June R. Jewell, CPA

    This is a great topic. I have been educating myself about info products and get tons of emails from online marketing “gurus” that have their own programs teaching people how to make money on the internet. It has become an industry into itself.
    I have just written my first book and have a pretty good list. My questions relate to how to figure out which products to focus on, what help I will need, how much to charge for them, and of course, the best way to market them. I could spend a ton of money signing up for subscriptions to online experts to help me with this. I have chosen to sel-educate.
    Any advice around which products are the best leveraging tools would be bery much appreciated.

  • Micki

    Michael, I am a grant writer and blogger. I have often thought of turning some of my popular blog posts into an ebook, but my blog has not gotten a very good following yet. Could I use something like an ebook to promote my blog, or does the blog need to have a good audience established first?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      This is the incredible thing about the time in which we live. Content is the new marketing. An e-book will definitely help grow your audience. You can use it as an incentive for people to subscribe to your e-mail list. Thanks.

      • Micki

        Thank you for the quick answer, Michael! I will definitely take the initiative to write one in the next two weeks!

      • https://about300.wordpress.com/ Chip Brown

        Michael, I totally agree that content is the new marketing. That model was used by Jesus, who developed the most effective marketing organization in history with a budget of $0.00. Here’s the Genius of Jesus’ Marketing Plan

        • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

          Good to hear from you, Chip. I’ve heard a lot of good things about you from Bob DeMoss.

  • http://twitter.com/stacey29lincoln Stacey Thacker

    Great thoughts here Michael. I love that now more than ever, it is easier for everyone to do this. Years ago, making passive income as a house wife (which I am) was difficult. Blogging, writing, ebooks, social media, etc. has opened so many doors for me. Passive income is possible when you are cooking dinner. Love it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/whiz.dom.9 Whiz Dom

    Yes, I am finally in the process of doing this for myself. As a writer, I have written articles, books and elearning programs for clients and been paid once while some of that content has lived on to continue to bring in revenue for those clients. I am very happy to have done it, and was paid well. At that point in my career, it was the best way to learn the ropes and get experience. However, at some point, I realized that I have gained enough knowledge to do it under my own flag. As part of putting together my own brand, I have joined Platform University to assemble the tools for this effort. As a writer, I have hundreds of blogs and papers on health information technology and electronic patient records that I plan to turn into a book – or actually a series of books – on health IT and how it can lower cost and improve quality when it is done right. I also developed an elearning program that is still experimental but exists as a template on the web. My husband is retired and so his earning days are over. I’m much younger and have many working years ahead of me, but would like to spend more time with him while earning that passive income! It is time that I stop living paycheck to paycheck and work smarter, not harder. Michael, thank you so much for what you are doing. You are having a positive impact on the world and people’s lives! Hopefully I can have the positive effect in the world to ultimately improve healthcare while improving my own earning potential.

  • http://www.mattmcwilliams.com/ Matt McWilliams

    I like to think of passive income like investing.

    I spent a lot of time on the front end getting all the forms filled out, picking the funds, etc. Then once it was up and running, I really don’t do that much in comparison to what we make.

    Of course, I check in, I talk with our advisor, we optimize, etc. Just like passive income. Platform the book will probably have a new edition. You update the online training. You tweak the landing pages, etc.

    But I am not running any of the companies I invest in. I am not answering their phones or marketing their products.

    You CAN do the same thing within your own company, just as Michael points out above.

    Another good example is cross-selling related products. While not purely passive, if you have 10,000 customers for a cooking course and cross-sell cooking utensils to them, the majority of that is passive. The time investment is minimal compared to the investment made to create the course, market it, etc.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      These are great examples, Matt. The analog to investing is spot-on. Thanks!

  • http://www.kentlapp.com/ Kent Lapp

    This is great. I promise your post is better than you even know Michael. It’s so, so true. It reveals the simple difference in mindset that makes all the difference in the world. When you work because you want to, not because you have to, life becomes way more fun! Great post!

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      I agree. In fact, I think Michael should probably turn this into an e-book. :)

      • http://www.kentlapp.com/ Kent Lapp

        Tell him to wait a year, I want to beat him to it. Ha ha. :) Just kidding! He totally should, would make a great ebook.

      • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

        Great idea! Project #734!

  • Chip

    Great Post MH! I am a financial advisor. I have been going at this for 20 years now and it has just recently “dawned” on me that perhaps my message that is “easy” for me to say is truly an “enlightening” experience for the the listener that wants to hear it. This is very humbling for me. So I am so thankful for your work because I am about to launch my blog (www.chiphutchison.com) to see if I can expand my message. You guidance in so valuable and timely for me!

  • http://www.leahadams.org/ Leah Adams

    Although I never really thought about it in this way, this is exactly what I did with my Legacy message that I gave at ladies events for a couple of years prior to putting the message into written form, aka, “From the Trash Pile to the Treasure Chest: Creating a Godly Legacy Bible study. http://www.leahadams.org/legacy/ I also have a DVD of the message that I offer for sale. I took blog posts from a six month period entitled ‘When Word Won’t Come’ and have turned them into a set of boxed greeting cards (Warner Press) http://www.warnerpress.org/Product/G7023/Boxed_Card_-_Encouragement%2c_When_Words_Aren_t_Enough.aspx and a soon-to-be-published devotion book, also through Warner Press. Thanks, Mr. Hyatt, for helping me define and put a name to what I was already doing.

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      Wow! This is great, Leah!

  • Robert Andrews

    I’ve been wondering how I can create more income streams with the blog I’m creating. You gave me some great ideas. I just need to get started. I’m trying to get my affiliate marketing business off the ground. Just a matter of time. I have ideas for books. Your blog inspired me as well. Thanks.

  • Nithin Thompson

    Michael, I work for a church. And I often wonder if I could turn sermons, or other things i’ve worked on into profitable books or e-books. But I’m not sure how to approach the leadership or the awkward conversation of how much cut the church gets verses what I get. How would you navigate that?

    • http://www.facebook.com/rlatham14 Ryan Latham

      I work for a church as well. Go for it! I use my blog to offer coaching and speaking opportunities and will soon be selling products like ebooks and DVDs. This will expand your reach beyond the walls of your church and your city.
      I would recommend talking to your leadership ahead of time to let them know what you are doing and why.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      This is great question. The best time to have this conversation is before they hire you. Increasingly, pastors are doing that. However, I recommend you read this excellent blog series, “Who Owns the Pastor’s Sermons.” It is written by my friends at Yates & Yates, one of the leading literary agencies in the world. They are also attorneys and Christians. (I know, that’s an oxymoron!) They have clients like Chuck Swindoll, John Maxwell, and David Jeremiah, among many others. Thanks.

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      Hmmm….I’m not sure why the church would get a cut other than a tithe or donation that you determined adequate. I agree with Ryan that you should give the board or pastoral leaders a heads up rather than “asking permission” because freedom of speech is still a right. However, if you DO plan on working on the content during your office hours using church resources (e.g. salaried hours, computer, broadband, fax…etc.) than you should ask for permission.

  • http://www.softskillsforhardjobs.com/ Jim Ryan

    Wow…this comes at a perfect time for me. I’m currently learning how to develop online trainings for my company and I was thinking on the way to work today how I could use this skill to enhance my blog and possibly sell my own.

    I can’t tell if the online training market is saturated or ripe for new content. What do people think?

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      Hi Jim, I think it depends on what your area of expertise tends to be. While I’ve not developed an online course for sale, I think the most successful programs are those that have a laser focus. An information mentor of mine once said, “..the riches are in the niches.” The more specific your content, the easier it will be to target your audience, provide value, drive word of mouth and get repeat purchases.

      • http://www.softskillsforhardjobs.com/ Jim Ryan

        That makes perfect sense! Thanks

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      It really depends on the field. As long as you are offering something distinctive, there’s plenty of room in ANY field.

  • DonnaGilliland10

    Michael, your article is appreciated. I needed to be reminded that my 20 years of expertise can be monetized with the varied products you mentioned. Sometimes we do think others already know what we do. Thank you Michael.

  • http://selfstairway.com/ Vincent Nguyen

    This is making me think about the possible ways for my skills to create these consistent streams of revenue. I’ve been toying with the idea for an ebook, but haven’t yet given it serious thought. Does turning a series of articles into an ebook mean simply drawing inspiration from the topics covered on the blog posts?

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      That’s one option Vincent, but you want to be very careful about copyright infringement and plagiarism.

      I think Michael was specifically referring to a blogger who has written content of their own and then using that original, self-generated content as an ebook.

      • http://selfstairway.com/ Vincent Nguyen

        Oh, of course! I should have mentioned this would be from my own content. :) Thanks for looking out though!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      You could actually use the same content. In fact, one great way to do it is to outline the book, then write each chapter as a blog post. You will likely have to do some work on transitions, but that’s about it.

      • http://selfstairway.com/ Vincent Nguyen

        I love that idea, Michael. Perhaps I’ll begin outlining the idea of a future book to inspire new articles and then transform them into one piece. Thanks!

  • http://www.facebook.com/rlatham14 Ryan Latham

    This is very helpful and timely. I have been wondering if there was some ways for me to create passive income and this post really helped me with some ideas and mostly the encouragement to do it. Thank you for the encouragement.

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      Care to share one of your ideas here?

  • Pingback: 5 Ways to Get Paid Multiple Times for the Same Work | Pastor Leaders()

  • http://www.gauraw.com/ Kumar Gauraw

    This is awesome! Turning the expertize, speech and even events in products? Wow! And you’ve exemplified what you teach. Not just enjoyed the post, but learnt a lot from you. Thank you very much!

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      Agreed Kumar – one of the real benefits of Michael’s content is that it’s not over-hyped theory, it’s ALL based on his own real world successes and failures.

  • http://twitter.com/quirkycity Heather C Button

    It’s a tough item in my industry, construction. Because you don’t get paid unless you get a job you work on. But I am working with our company on revitalizing Branding and our office, and getting other methods of communication out there for our expertise, and I like the idea of creating “passive income”. More importantly, I think the partners will too. I’ve even lent my physical copy of your Platform book to them for perusal. But I think we need to level more of their expertise too. Just need to figure out how. So far, I like the video and training idea.

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      Heather, I think there’s a tremendous amount of your knowledge that could be turned into information products that would benefit other industries: an ebook on subcontracting best practices; an online course about project management; a webinar about the ins-and-outs of zoning boards; or possibly a speech about “green” considerations and environmentally building practices.

      There’s a ton of relevant content that would resonant with many audiences.

  • http://www.jaysonfeltner.com/ Jayson Feltner

    This is the great thing about content creation. Other than writing a book about something you know, most office staff won’t have anything they can turn into a product other than their own knowledge.

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      The trick Jayson is realizing that the knowledge we tend to take for granted is often valuable to others who don’t know it. The info products that Michael mentioned allow that expertise to be shared and monetized.

  • Judy

    Wow…how is it that you always seem to write about the very thing I am questioning, wondering, etc? Very useful article, as usual! Thank you.

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      I know Judy – it’s almost kinda of spooky….in an informative and extremely beneficial way ;-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/scott.brock.33 Scott Brock

    I love this idea of doing work once then getting paid multiple times. My question is how do you find or realize that thing that you are an expert in and is only for people who are good speakers and writers?

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      No, it’s not only for speakers and writers, although I believe excellence in communication is absolutely essential in any kind of business endeavor. When I’m trying to identify my areas of expertise, I look at everything from life and career experiences to unique talents I have. Then I consider what I spend the most time thinking about, talking about. When having lunch with a friend or coworker, what topics do I go back to again and again? What gets me fired up? Then I think about the feedback I get from readers, friends, coworkers, audience members. Usually there are some common threads between all of these that help to hone in on my expertise.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      No, it could be literally anything. I would ask myself three questions:
      1. What am I passionate about
      2. What am I good at?
      3. Is there a market willing to pay for this information?

      My podcast next week will on this subject. Thanks.

  • Nancy Collamer

    Excellent post Michael. One of the things I love most about your site (and why I recommend it in my new book, Second-Act Careers: 50+ Ways to Profit From Your Passions During Semi-Retirement) is that you don’t just write about why something is a good idea, you provide tools and how-to’s so that people can more easily turn their ideas into income. Always enjoy reading your updates – many thanks.

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      I agree, Nancy. The content is always fresh, clear, and focused.

      • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

        Thanks, Michele. If that’s true, I owe a lot of it to SCORRE.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, Nancy. I really appreciate you recommending me. Thanks also for your very kind words. Blessings to you!

  • http://www.facebook.com/twirk Robbie Kleinberg

    I already have almost 100,000 views of my YouTube videos of trombone covers of pop songs and people are always asking me how to do it. an instructional ebook? how have I not thought of this?

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      Great idea Robbie! Once your ebook is completed then post a video book trailer on your YouTube channel to help your fans find out about it. You might also want to consider embedding within the book a link to a URL or “squeeze page” that allows you to capture the email address of buyers so you can continue to notify them about any complementary info products you might develop in the future.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      I love that niche. Perfect!

  • Dianna Schneider

    Thanks Michael, The reminder was perfect timing for me. I’ve been offering solutions 4 parents for years but just started on the website. So far I love it, but learning the social media aspect everyday.

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      I agree Dianna – the social media piece is an on-going learning process. One of the best things I’ve learned from Michael is that you should only focus on those social media outlets that you yourself use.

      If you love Facebook and Pinterest – then use those. If you’re a Twitter and LinkedIn fan, than learn all you can about those. The point being that it’s better to go deep with one or two sites, rather than trying to be everywhere. For what it’s worth….

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Me, too. I learn something new about social media every day.

    • http://twitter.com/motherof2angie Angie Walthall

      I agree on the social media aspect. It’s the best way for unknowns to get “known” these days – to advertise your work, expertise, blog, book, etc. with your social followers on a consistent basis (consistency being the key) is the key, as most of us don’t have a foot in the door to overnight fame. Be the squeeky wheel, create your own buzz.

  • Mary Hooker

    Mr. Hyatt,
    I attended one of your conferences and enjoyed it and have learned from your blogs. I am a first time novelist and in reading about writing and any type of submissions, do you really think an unknown is going to be recognized. Today the field is crowded and to have anything, other than paying for it yourself, published, you have to know someone, be a well-known person, have a popular ministry, or have been published in some area for years. My pragmatic thinking tells me that the days of just being received as a writer because does not work any more. I am sure I will be the only negative post you will receive, but then, again, my practical nature trumps.
    Still, I do learn from your blogs and appreciate the time you put into them.
    Mary Hooker

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      I completely understand what you’re saying Mary. It’s been my experience that the advancement of technology and the Internet have democratized every writer’s ability to build a Platform. Michael’s book is a fantastic how-to guide that every content creator should read to help them find and attract their audience.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      This is a case where whether you think you can or you think can’t, you’re right.

  • http://www.facebook.com/tj.keaton.5 Tj Keaton

    I have joined an MLM which at a low cost of entry has given me the opportunity to work through my blocks to success and to develop the tools needed to be successful in any venture. Even though I am not currently financially independent it has put me on a path that could lead me there. Most importantly given me the opportunity to dream again! Don’t rule this options out as a way to create a passive income if you can find a product that you love and a company that you can truely beleive in. It is easy to get oversold with all of the hype out there. Be sure to follow your heart and to pray to be sure.

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      Over the years I’ve only had modest success with the MLM model and nothing sustainable. Personally, I’ve had greater success from affiliate commissions generated from information products promoted on my blog.

      • http://www.facebook.com/tj.keaton.5 Tj Keaton

        Did the process help you to learn and develop in ways you wouldn’t have other wise? I do agree with you by the way about generating more through your informational materials as you have a much larger profit margin to work with. Also, you do have more of an upfront time investment to develop your informational materials as it is a gamble to those of us that need what you offer. I don’t know if I am off on my perception that the more you invest in time, resources, and risk the more you get back either monetarily or in life lessons. The success system is what is most important and you, I believe have learned it for yourself and you are using it in your current pursuit. Would you agree? Would you also agree that if you were just as passionate and dedicated as you are now that you would have been just as successful in your past MLM opportunities?

  • Brian Schmitt

    Great post Michael, and a reminder I needed to hear. A great way for non-writers to generate the needed content for blogging or writing a book over the course of a year is to use shortcutblogging.com. An excellent tool for anyone who’s struggling with the discipline to write weekly. (And there’s no writing involved!)

    • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

      Hmmm….I’ll have to check out the recommendation Brian. Even though writing and content generation is not a problem for me, I’m intrigued by the site.

      • Brian Schmitt

        They’ve got an genius idea for people who do struggle to write. (As I do.) So it may not be a great tool for you, but something you might be able to point others toward. And they have a free tool you can download to help you brainstorm and map out a year’s worth of blog posts. Worth the visit to their site just to get it.

      • http://www.shortcutblogging.com/ Dave Young

        We just completed a case study video yesterday with our very first customer. He started with us 15 months ago. His site had 3,200 words on it…INCLUDING a 2-year-old blog. We’ve helped him add 60,000 words and he’s contemplating books, e-books, etc. We don’t even have the video on our site at the time I’m writing this comment. But, it’s live on Youtube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mbUCH99Ud8s

    • http://harrisonjonathan.wordpress.com/ Jonathan Harrison

      Brian, how interesting! This could be a great benefit to many, thanks for sharing.

  • http://www.thedailyretort.com/ TorConstantino

    These are all great ideas – Michael. Unfortunately, I’ve seen some “infopreneurs” who simply repurpose the exact same content in EVERY instance mentioned, which comes off as kind of useless. However, your content ALWAYS seems fresh and beneficial to your audience. I guess the secret always comes back to “start with wow.”

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      That’s exactly right, Tor. What does your audience expect, and then how can you exceed those expectations? Thanks.

  • http://twitter.com/jillsavage jillsavage

    Michael, this is very helpful and is something I really need to do. I’m wondering if there is a consultant or a company that comes alongside of someone who has TONS of content and helps to repackage it into other forms of resources resulting in passive income. I have more than enough content to do this, but I don’t have the time to repackage it. What suggestions do you have for outsourcing this process?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      A couple of people you can check out: Rebecca Livermore and Pam Hendrickson. Rebecca is working for me now. She is my blog editor. I have not used Pam, but I had dinner with her and really liked her philosophy.

      • http://twitter.com/jillsavage jillsavage

        Thank you very much!

  • Brent

    Making “products” has become so simple. WHat is NOT so simple is how to “roll them out.” The Marketing is always the ‘KEY”. Do you have any systems or tools available that I’m not seeing. I would be very interested. Thanks,

  • http://joyfulmothering.net Christin

    Love, love how you laid this out. I do blog consulting and have recently decided to turn it into an e-course. I need to finish an eBook I’m writing before I can dive into that project. But I’m excited! I am hanging up my role as a virtual assistant to tap into my own creativity. :) Thanks for this, Michael!

  • Mary Catherine George

    I am just not entering the process of thinking about what passive income streams I should consider – What would help me is to know what passive income stream is the easiest to produce and then launch as a passive income stream. I have several areas of expertise – and definitely want to introduce this knowledge for those who could benefit. Thanks Michael – always learning from your sites..

  • http://twitter.com/davestadel Dave Stadel

    What an important article. As long as we trade time for money (in an active income) it’s very likely we never will have as much of both things (time & money) as we would like.

    Imagine a community of entrepreneurs, authors, speakers, life coaches, and leaders that are able to leverage each other’s talents. What if that same community served the public with their gifts and also developed hungry students
    to carry the torch forward? If we could then implement passive incomes streams via subscriptions of multiple media forms and live events it would be a home run for people who like to help people and make a difference while making an income.

    The economy has hit my family like most. Thankfully I’ve been working with a community like I described above, developing myself and others, while building passive income. Last year it was a significant part of our household income and it is growing. Right now we’re about one-third passive and two-thirds active. By the end of this year those will be reversed.

    I’ve been following this blog for about five years. There are always so many smart ideas. I appreciate learning through your experience with social media tools, blogging, and leadership.

    This country is in need of leaders ready to make a difference while they
    develop others. Keep up the good work Michael!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, Dave. I appreciate your encouragement!

  • http://twitter.com/acnallan Allan O’Gorman

    The mlm we are working does not deal with products but rather with essential services. We obtain a customer ONCE and get paid every month they pay their bill. This generates a true residual income. If you like, http://www.apennydoubled.ca

  • http://www.mythinkingbox.com/ Terry Hadaway

    Great post. I am creating elearning modules for my book, Live Your Why. It’s fun to see people discovering their purposes without me having to lead the seminar each time. I’m working toward the 80/20 split. Not quite there yet. Now that you’ve informed us, I can’t practice the art of ignorance (http://wp.me/p36il6-3x).

  • Aaron Ashworth

    Talk about aimed right at me. I having been trying to turn knowledge into product, but seem to not take action because I don’t know what knowledge I should bring to the table. I have had so many different experiences with the military, business attempts, and jobs that I lose myself in thinking about what people may want to actually hear about. How do you overcome wondering what will sale and what won’t in order to get started.

  • http://www.clayproductions.com/aaron/ Aaron Johnson

    I just have to say that I really enjoy reading Tor Constantino’s replies on here. Tor, thanks for your always thoughtful and helpful remarks.

  • http://www.apprenticeshipofbeinghuman.com/ Graham Scharf

    The question that strikes me is this: Does the platform/tribe need to come first? Or is it possible to build passive income as you build a tribe/platform? Any great examples of folks in different sectors who did both at once?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      You’ll always be building both. Great content expands your market. For example, my e-book, Creating Your Personal Life Plan, took my e-mail subscriber list from 3,000 to 70,000 in 6 months.

      • http://www.apprenticeshipofbeinghuman.com/ Graham Scharf

        Thanks for leading by example, and for the encouragement that both can and DO happen at the same time!

  • http://kimanziconstable.com/ kimanzi constable

    Great advice Michael! Last year I attended two Brendan Burchard events and was blessed to have intensive training on how to take your expertise and create products and services. I have since released two ebooks, two products, and a coaching course. Everyday they bring in more and more passive income.

    The cool thing about the day and age we live in is that you can do a lot of this for little or no cost. You can use a Google Hangout and create a killer webinar for a small fee or for free to promote a product of yours. With social media it’s also easy to market what you’re doing.

    • Jim Martin

      Kimanzi, thanks for sharing your own story regarding passive income and what you have produced. This is encouraging.

    • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

      Kimanzi, with all you’re doing, have you ever thought of releasing a video course? Maybe taking some of the past talks you’ve given and put them out on video. That would be an awesome way to convert the active to passive!

  • http://www.designingachampion.com/ DrMatt

    Love this post! I actually was planning on writing a similar article on my blog next week. I have always been someone that studied wealth, and of course understood passive income as a result, but a few years back it really hit home for me. I am a Chiropractor(as my main job) and about 4-5 years ago, I broke one of my fingers. It could easily have been worse, and even with it being just one finger, it took forever to heal because I had to work. Also, at that time my wife was working the front desk in our office, so there was no income from any other source. We have since focused very hard on fixing that problem.

  • http://www.searchandtrace.net/ Stan

    I launched my website 14 months ago, providing free and discounted Christian eBooks. While it still isn’t providing a financial return, it is rewarding me in so many other ways. To have 1000’s of people downloading quality Biblical literature, from 127 countries around the world, many of them unreached with the Gospel, is very satisfying. Go help yourself to a free eBook in PDf or MOBI, or ePub format here: http://www.searchandtrace.net/shop/

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  • http://www.linkedin.com/in/sholaabidoye/ Shola Abidoye

    This statement is VERY thought-provoking: “What opportunities do you have to turn active income into passive ones”. Also, the statement, “The reason passive income is better is because it scales.” begs a blog post about scaling! What are your scaling techniques as an author?

  • http://twitter.com/motherof2angie Angie Walthall

    Michael, thank you for this post, and for your blog in general. Because of one of your posts, I am now in the process of publishing with Westbow. Hoping that the beginning of passive income is right around the corner, and will continue as the Lord leads to build more. Am soooooooooo beside myself excited at finally publishing after all these years. THANK YOU!!! for sharing!!!

    • Jim Martin

      Congratulations Angie! This sounds like something you have have wanted to do for a long time. So glad that one of Michael’s posts was particularly helpful and instrumental in this.

  • Marquita Herald

    I’ve written/published half a dozen books and am now in the process of turning some of the material into additional products. It takes time, but it’s an excising process. I feel compelled to comment on the point about turning blog posts into books – everyone recommends this – and because it sounds like such a quick and easy way to produce a product many (many!) bloggers have already done it. Unfortunately, some of the most negative reviews I’ve come across on Amazon are for these very books – usually with a recommendation to fellow readers to just save their money and visit the blog. I’m sure this can be done well, but I’m sad to say that so far I haven’t found an example to point to.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      THe format is not magic. If you start with junk, you’ll end up with junk. But if you start with quality and think strategically, it can totally work. Not to toot my own horn, but almost every chapter in my book, Platform, was a blog post originally. It has 269 customer reviews on Amazon with an average of 4.7 stars. Thanks.

  • http://www.workyouenjoy.com/ Adam Rico

    This is great Michael. Thanks to your post I just had one of those Duh! moments. I have a presentation that I can turn into a product. Thanks for jarring that idea loose for me.

    • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

      Sweet Adam! Presentations work well for audio and video programs. Looking forward to what you release!

      • http://www.workyouenjoy.com/ Adam Rico

        Thanks Joe, I’ll keep you posted. I’m looking forward to your ebook when you release it.

  • Sally Altobelli

    Thanks Michael! I am a young marketing professional just getting started and this post really helped put things in perspective for me as I start planning out my career.

    I am new to your tribe and I just love all the awesome resources you have available. Thanks again for all of your great content. :)

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, Sally. I appreciate you taking the time to comment.

  • Fernando

    You’re always giving us fantastic ideas to improve.

  • http://flatcreek.com/ Allen Fuller

    Michael, I always appreciate your practical direction and unique perspective based on your own success. I’ve been a consultant for 9 years and am just now launching my platform for political entrepreneurs at http://www.rootshq.com. What’s ironic is that as I’ve started blogging more, it has generated more leads for the active consulting stream. Which is nice to keep the lights on short-term, but it also feels like it’s distracting me from the primary objective of creating products. How do you balance that transition of pushing new leads towards the product instead of the lucrative — albeit non-recurring and all-consuming — consulting revenue stream?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Thanks for your kind words. I have a couple of thoughts on this. First, I would get really connected to why creating products is important for future. Write down the reasons in a bulleted list.
      Then write down a specific goal for what you want to create. I don’t recommend working on more than one product at a time. An old Chinese proverb says, “Man who chases two rabbits catches neither.”
      Then I would schedule the time. What gets on our calendars is usually what gets done. Thanks again.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dayo.adewoye Dayo Adewoye

    Thanks a lot for the advice, Michael.

  • http://warriormen.com/ Glen Evans

    Mr. Hyatt, this information is literally worth thousands to anyone who pursues it, and you gave it up for free. Thanks.

    • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

      It is Glen. How are you going to use it?

      • http://warriormen.com/ Glen Evans

        Hi Joe. I have a member site and information products for a niche subject, but since “meeting” Michael through his Platform book, I am launching a new website aimed at men who want to protect their families physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I just started writing a new book, and plan to write many more.

    • http://theordainedbarista.com/ Barry Hill

      Glen….ain’t that the truth! Let me add that the stuff on Platform University is worth 100X the membership fee!

      • http://warriormen.com/ Glen Evans

        Hi Barry, Platform U is where I am headed next. I want to make sure I have time to consume the content. One thing Michael has done for me is drill past the guru types out there, and focus on a few who can help me achieve my goals. I really enjoy his approach.

      • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

        Thanks for that, Barry!

  • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

    Michael, there are a few areas I can turn the active income to passive.

    I can turn my previous blog posts into a book of some sort. I can begin releasing audio products based around previous created content. There’s all sorts of ways and I’m excited as I take the steps forward to uncover them.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Awesome, Joe. YOu can definitely do that.

    • Jim Martin

      I have actually been thinking the same thing since I read this post. Hearing you express this encourages me as well. Thanks.

  • Rashaan Mateen

    I’m striving everyday to be just like you when I grow up

  • http://www.thadthoughts.com/ Thad Puckett

    Great post. The line that hit me the most is that passive income scales. You don’t. But the fruits of your labors do or at least can. Thanks for a stimulating read.

  • http://www.personal-success-factors.com/ steveborgman

    I’m sure we all have our opinions about Robert Allen, the infomercial guru who wrote the popular book, Multiple Streams of Income. I have to say, though, that he transformed my mindset about money, and I’ve been working on the same types of things you mentioned since I read that book a few years ago. It just makes sense to offer value in more than just a one to one transaction; in addition, we can share value on a scaled basis in this manner.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      I read that book too. It was huge;y helpful to me.

  • Jck R. Nicholas, Jr.


    Thanks for this post. It’s right on point. After retiring from Naval & Civil Service 24+ years ago, I started writing articles for magazines focused on my area of expertise (maintenance & reliability). I also prepared professional papers for conferences with those themes (which also got me admission without having to pay a fee). I found one could be converted to the other with additions, deletions and proper formatting. Ultimately there were enough to form a book. Now, after some keynote speeches, many articles, papers, and workshops (live and on the web) there are nine books in print. Workshop presentations under my publisher’s sponsorship have been recorded and DVD products produced. All of these yield semi-passive income (royalties). The products are also are my advertising. I say semi-passive because you need to periodically update to add new material in order to keep the royalty stream running.

    • Jim Martin

      Wow! What a wonderful example of the point that Michael is addressing regarding passive income. It is very helpful to hear how you did this after your retirement. Your willingness to explain in detail what you did really helps to clarify even more what Michael is saying.

  • http://www.facebook.com/aileen.r.price Aileen Rodriguez Price

    Michael, I love this idea. I’ve been considering furthering the resources I already have, and your blog has encouraged me to pursue it. You’ve given me new hope that the opportunities abound! The reality is that when you already have a starting point, the task becoming less overwhelming since you’ve already done your homework. All those years of teaching Sunday school and planning lessons will come in handy :). Blessings.

  • http://www.leavingconformitycoaching.com/ Randy Crane

    I’m sure I have even more than I’ve already recognized, and this post has started the wheels turning on some new ideas.

    I’ve already got one book published (a short easy-to-read and highly practical one tying aspects of Disneyland to time management strategies), and I’m working on a larger one due out later this year that is more evangelistic or devotional in nature (it could be used either way). The latter is from my blog (http://www.FaithandtheMagicKingdom.net) that I’ve been working on for a couple of years now.

    I’m in the process of finalizing a 6-part video series that I could easily sell, but I will be giving it away as an opt-in offer.

  • Mich

    Thanks for this post, Michael! Good momentum for me. And through the comments, I see I am in great company. Yes…just keep going…don’t give up… :) I so need focus in what I am doing…

  • Ed

    Energy deregulation – lead others to dream again and succeed.

  • http://twitter.com/JudiHoller Judi Holler

    I launched my blog at http://www.judiholler.com in January and am definately taking your “content lab” advice as I think about a future book!!

  • http://www.fixyoursockets.com/ Shaun Burke

    Hi Michael. I love the way you distinguish between active and passive income – its really putting words on a concept which I always knew was true. As a retired electrician, I have turned my expertise into a product – I’ve just released the 7-Step Guide to Working Sockets which helps homeowners safely get their electric outlets back working again should the power go because of a faulty appliance etc.

    Keep up the good work!

  • http://www.joshuabfarrell.com/ JB Farrell

    Great post, I love seeing people move from their only income being w-2 income to have other income.

    For those who love their JOB’s and don’t want to move into the types of passive income you mention, their are other passive income opportunities they can research and invest in to earn passive income.

    Such as Real estate, working interest in Oil wells, publicly traded limited partnerships, and several others. If you learn to sow your active income, you can reap passive income.

  • http://www.thepetedesign.com/ Pete R.

    I love how you really shown where your passive income are from. Most blog I read always left that part out for some reason. Thanks for sharing it.

    I’ve also started writing blogs (http://blog.bucketlistly.com) since the beginning of this year every week.

    I was wondering how long it took you from the beginning to this perfect passive income?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      I’ve been at it for nine years. I started trying to monetize my blog in 2009. Thanks.

      • http://www.thepetedesign.com/ Pete R.

        Thanks for the answer! Time to accumulate more experiences and contents. :D

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  • http://www.magicalmouseschoolhouse.com/ Jodi / MagicalMouseSchoolhouse

    I have turned my expertise into a book and am having great success with it. However, what I need to know is how to get that book to a wider audience – where to publicize it. I can only advertise to my Fb, Twitter, etc., fans so much, you know? How do I get word of my product out to potential readers?

  • http://twitter.com/AndreaReindl Andrea Reindl

    Multiple streams of income is the way to create long term stability and wealth. We are blessed that in today’s world each of us has the ability to create many different kinds of income streams and assets. It’s all in how we look at it. Thank you for sharing openly what’s worked for you and offering suggestions on more ways to increase income streams. On a bit of a personal rant (which you touched on) it’s important that people know that passive just means that you aren’t trading time for dollars but rather leveraging some other asset you have. It still requires occasional attention to keep the income streaming in.

  • http://OneBoldMove.com/ Frank Gustafson

    Michael, thanks for your wisdom. I recently sold my company. I read Platform (twice) and am working on putting your advice into action (thank you). I started my blog and am working towards producing a podcast and doing some video interviews, and eventually a book. The goal is to produce valuable, compelling content that will help take entrepreneurs and want-to-be business owners to the next level. Your tools have been immensely valuable and I look forward to creating new streams of passive income. You rock!!

  • Selina Ou

    This post get me start thinking about my financial situations. But from the 5 ways you mentioned, it seems that I could not get any of them at this moment.. All I am doing to it create active income.

  • Tarence Wade

    this info is good and sets the things in perspective for most people.


  • http://TrueFocusMedia.com/ Jeff Long

    Thanks for reposting this on Twitter. One of the three legs of my business is helping companies and individuals turn their knowledge into eLearning products. I love helping, teaching and serving and there are so many industry leaders out there that could easily change from active to passive income with a little help and guidance.

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