One of my students wrote me recently. This is what she said, “I’m seriously occupied with academic issues but I want to make money. To be frank, I’m overwhelmed.”
Well, the truth is, there is nothing wrong with academics. Another truth is, if you’re only into academics, you’re preparing yourself to work as an employee.
However, what I encourage my students to do is to prepare to work as self-employed digital nomads. It takes a long time to sink in and some believe they can eat their cake and still have it.
Some of the most influential and wealthy people on the planet today did not attend college and some did, so it’s not about how many certificates you have, it’s about understanding how the global economy works today and is rapidly evolving.
You have to decide what you want: more certificates or financial freedom. However, if you’re still pursuing certificates at the age of 45 – 55, it doesn’t make much sense. What are you going to do with the certificate(s) when you retire at 60?
So my call to you as you’re reading this article is, start learning right away to extend your digital footprints, reach and bank account. When you create more influence and impact, your bank account will definitely swell as your target audience beats a path to what you create.
The age bracket having the biggest impact and creating the biggest wealth today are those between 27 and 43. Amazon started business in 1994 (27 years ago) and the founder Jeff Bezos is one of the richest men in the world today.
Nigeria’s richest musicians and entertainers today are Davido, Burna Boy and Whizkid and they are respectively 28, 30 and 31 in age. According to publicly available online sources, Davido, Burna Boy, and Whizkid are worth $25 million, $17 million, and $20 million, respectively. In contrast, King Sunny Ade, Nigeria’s music legend, is worth $12 million and he is 75 and started his music career in 1963.
What Davido, Burna Boy, and Whizkid have in common with Jeff Bezos is that they all harness the power of the web and multiply their reach, income and wealth by the minute. Using the web, Amazon reaches millions of people all over the world and that is why Jeff Bezos has been able to create so much wealth.
Using the web, social media and the associated technologies, Whizkid, Davido, Burna Boy, Tuface Idibia, Tiwa Savage, and Linda Ikeji have emerged Nigeria’s wealthiest and most recognized influencers below 45.
While success online is not a function of age, those born in the digital era, the so-called millennials and Gen Y, have a distinct advantage as they can swim through most things digital like fish in water.
You too can create more impact, influence and income by copying what those ahead of you in terms of wealth are doing. In short, having a web presence and learning to grow your reach exponentially.
However, making it “BIG” online is not a walk through the park. You must be willing to put in the hours to learn how the entire web ecosystem works together to enable entertainers, entrepreneurs, academics, medical practitioners, teachers and freelancers such as graphic and web designers, and sculptors, to mention a few, create mind- boggling wealth.
To get started, you need a social media presence by creating an account in at least three social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn. The ones you choose will be guided by the goals you have set for yourself. Having what the techies call social media handles is just the first step. You must also learn how to post relevant content to attract traffic.
Having set up your social media accounts and started generating traffic, you must also have a “place” where to direct that traffic to. That is where your website or blog comes in. The choice whether to start with a website or a blog will also depend on your goals. All in all, you need guidance from someone who understands how to build a web presence and business online.
There are many types of businesses online and each requires a different approach. You can sell physical and/or digital products or pure service in areas as mundane as planning a meal to something as weird as training a cat toilet manners.
Having done the basics, you have to keep deepening your knowledge in how to keep growing your traffic by creating and posting content that attracts attention. In all, I assume you know that you must position yourself in a niche that you have deep expertise so you’d be playing to your strength.
As in anything in life, all you need is to start. Once you start and are consistent, the momentum you have created will propel you in directions you never imagined and before you know it you’ll have succeeded in extending your footprints, reach and your bank account will start to swell all things being equal.