Student blog – How I turned my side hustle into a business during lockdown
Adam Billing shares with us how he utilised his time during lockdown by turning his hobby of making keyring’s and stickers into a business with 130 sales now!
Throughout this pandemic I have been shielding due to being high risk, so back in the first lockdown I really struggled with finding things to occupy myself.
I invested in an Apple Pencil to create designs, my dad had an old cutting machine which he let me borrow for my first launch. Now on my third product launch of bottles and keyrings, expanding my adventure from stickers to working with vinyl. And soon hopefully greeting cards as well. My aim is to be a fun small stationary business.
It took me longer than planned to get to university, I done three years at college.
I’ve always enjoyed taking photographs, from the age of fifteen when I got my first camera to now using the skills within my practice and also to create promotional work for my business.
"I chose to study photography because I found it really interesting how you can capture a moment of time."
When it comes to juggling my small business alongside university it can be challenging, but I’ve found that I enjoy doing business tasks in my free time so when I’m not in classes or working on projects you’ll find me either designing new stickers or products such as my new keyrings and water bottles. A big part of my small business journey has taken place through the app TikTok, since starting my business in June 2020 I am now at 1500 followers and over 18 thousand total likes.
In regard to finding clients it has mainly been by the use of creating content for TikTok, showing my processes from designing and making the physical product to packaging videos and unboxing supplies. I have also used various support groups on Instagram to help promote myself and other small businesses. It’s a really nice community.
My main piece of advice would be to make sure you enjoy what you’re doing, don’t just start a business because you think it would be fun. Starting a small business can be expensive and time consuming so make sure you are having fun.
Also making sure you are promoting yourself, whether it be on Instagram or TikTok, using tags within posts also helps you reach a larger audience. And lastly, be unique. You’ll want a niche, something different to everyone else, yes it can be a task to find that but it will help you so much.
Visit Adam’s shop StickWithUsByAdam