8 min 59 sec

Oil & Gas Worker Becomes Sports Videographer for Polo Games

A project planner gets inspired by his son’s soccer game and then creates a rewarding business as a sports videographer.
Niche Ideas Photography Service SHS Success Story Sports

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What It's About

A photography side hustle that specializes in getting players noticed.

Business Model
Skills Required
Photography & Power of Observation
Profit Potential

Words of Wisdom

One lesson learned: During a game in which he’s being paid by both teams, he always collects full payment upfront from both of those teams before the game. If not, the loser might not pay at the end of the game. He learned this the hard way.

Fun Fact

Alvaro is not just a long-time listener of the Side Hustle School podcast, he also watches Your Business by MSNBC where it features business submitted by the public in a section called #YOURBIZSELFIE. Alvaro sent MSNBC a photo and explained what he does without any expectation. One day, he saw his business appeared on national TV and was surprised by it.

Notes from Chris

Episode 581

Alvaro Plaza is a project planner at an oil and gas service company in Houston, Texas. While he’s doing well in his job now, he always wanted to start a side hustle. He used to work as an Uber driver part-time, but he wanted something that was more within his own control.

Like many of our listeners, Alvaro had many business ideas. He thought about starting an espresso van, building a digital marketing agency, working in real estate, and more. While having a lot of ideas is great, it’s crucial to take action. Alvaro didn’t move on with any idea he had until January 2016. At the time he had been laid off by his company, and everything changed.

At that time, his son was playing soccer in 9th grade. Alvaro always loved photography and filming as a form to preserve memories. He thought if he could film the game, create some highlights, and send those to coaches, his son would have more opportunities to get a soccer scholarship. Besides, these highlights can one day become great sports memories for his son too. That was when a brilliant idea flashed across his mind.

He called his new project Champions Sports Films.

Athletes need services like this if they want to increase recruiting opportunities. Besides, they could also use these replays for self and team improvement. Alvaro thought he could package it as a service targeting coaches and families with athletes. Furthermore, it was a weekend side hustle so that even when he found another full-time job, he would still be able to continue growing it on the side.

After Alvaro filmed his son's game, the opposing team’s coach came over to talk with him. He wanted Alvaro to film their game so they could learn from the replays and highlights. That was when Alvaro got his first customer. With the quick success, he knew that there were more opportunities to make more money. He didn’t celebrate getting the first sale because all he was thinking about was how to get more clients.

Champions Sports Films had a humble beginning. Alvaro made only $6,000 in profit in 2016. It wasn’t a big paycheck, but it was growing. Then, he made $15,000 in profit in 2017. Halfway through July, he had made $17,000 in 2018 up to July. Alvaro’s goal is to make a total $30,000 in profit this year and expand the business to other cities in the future.

By our math, Alvaro’s $4,000 investment has turned into $38,000 and counting. It’s also brought him a wealth of experiences, the confidence to think about one day doing this full-time, and the passion to try out new projects.


  • Champions Sports Films: Learn more about Alvaro and his photography/videography service over on his website
  • Wordpress: Alvaro used Wordpress to setup Champions Sports Films, and here you can learn how to install your own Wordpress site in 5 minutes
  • Adobe Premiere Pro, YouTube, & Dropbox: Three of the programs and platforms that Alvaro used for his videos

Inspiration is good; inspiration combined with action is better. Now get back to work!

Yours in the revolution,


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Quote of the Day
"While photography and videography may be a saturated market, there are lots of different methods you can use to stand out. Always be on the lookout for ways to adapt your service to fit the needs of others."
—Alvaro Plaza #SideHustleSchool

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To infinity and beyond,

Chris Guillebeau