What It's About
A low-tech sign hustle that brings in a whole other side income without even a basic website!
Words of Wisdom
The business grew steadily, mostly through word of mouth. People would either see him out putting up signs and ask for his contact information or get referred by an existing client. Soon he was placing signs for independent real estate agents, real estate offices, housing developers, contractors, residential painters and even fireworks stands before the Fourth of July. Any time he wanted to add to his client list, he would go in person to introduce himself to the agents hosting model homes for a new development or to real estate offices.
It's important to know how to market yourself, and sometimes cold calling can really pay off!
90% of Pierce's clients are in real estate or are involved in building housing developments, so they tend to be consistent, repeat clients. These connections helped him to build the foundation of his sign side hustle business, but he’s also had some other random clients. In addition to helping real estate agents and housing developers, he's also helped companies advertise for fireworks, Halloween celebrations, house painters, and hospital clinics.
Notes from Chris
If you've ever thought that you didn't possess the technical skills to create a successful side hustle, today's story may change your mind. It's all about how a salesman in Nashville, Tennessee jumps at the opportunity to launch a low-tech, low-stress side hustle that brings in an additional $48,000 for him and his family without even having to launch a website. Back in 2005, a friend from Pierce Marr's church was looking for someone to set up signs, and since Pierce had helped people move furniture on more than one occasion, he was the very first person he called. Even though Pierce was already successful at his day job in sales, since it was only a few hours per weekend, he said, “why not?!” and decided to try it out. He already had a truck, and a hammer, so with no additional costs other than his time, he brought in $500 / month right off the bat. He spent an average of 12 hours hour per month and used the extra money to take his wife out to dinner more often and help out their son who was in college. The business grew steadily, mostly through word of mouth. People would either see him out putting up signs and ask for his contact information or get referred by an existing client. Soon he was placing signs for independent real estate agents, real estate offices, housing developers, contractors, residential painters and even fireworks stands before the Fourth of July. Over the years his business has grown naturally through referrals. When his son joined the business he also brought with him new contacts and some new accounts. In 2016 they placed around 500 signs every weekend for an average of a dozen clients which brought in $50,000 in revenue for only 5-10 hours of work each week. These days, Pierce still has his day job in sales, runs the sign business with his son but now has multiple other side businesses. He does voiceover work, coaching, and hosts a podcast. Looking back, he credits starting his sign hustle with giving him the confidence to move on to these other ideas. Aside from the awesome name—SIGN hustle—I love this blue-collar side hustle. I use that label because he’s doing a fair amount of manual labor here—it’s not an internet business where he sits at the computer all day—but he’s constructed it in a way to where it’s not just a part-time job, he’s created real value in it. MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
- Pierce Marrs: Learn more about Pierce and how he got started with his unique "Sign Hustle" business on his website!
- College Bartender Turns Online Shopping Into Accidental Side Hustle: In the prehistoric age before easy online shopping, a bartender discovers a way to supplement the tips she lost during a recession by reselling clothing to her friends.
- USPS Mail Carrier Makes Clay Imprints for New Parents: How a USPS mail carrier and court interpreter created an $800/month hustle serving new and expectant parents.
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