Hobby To Career on 3AW 693 AM Radio Melbourne with Tony Moclair

Hobby To Career 3AW 693AM Radio Melbourne with Tony Moclair and Sue Ellson

Hobby To Career on 3AW 693 AM Radio Melbourne with Tony Moclair

By Sue Ellson

Topic: Hobby To Career

Date: 23 January 2024

Media Outlet: 3AW 693AM Melbourne https://www.3aw.com.au

Broadcaster / Interviewer: Tony Moclair

Producer: Bianca Johnston

Duration: 00:05:11

Time of show: 14:35

Audio Recording:

YouTube Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiOHGHvonn8

Hobby to Career on 3AW Radio Melbourne with Tony Moclair and Sue Ellson


I’m keen to know if you know anybody who has parlayed their hobby into a career. If they’ve, if they’re really into something as a as a pastime and then have decided to make that they’re 9 to 5 as people say. The reason I ask, I read an article last night about a former teacher who has now gone pro gaming. He games.

Now if you thought that was something only your 17-year-old did at high volume at all hours of the day on school holidays when he’s promised to be doing his homework, no. Seems uh everyone in the classroom is now hooked on gaming. It is a thing, and uh if you know anything about that world you know that there’s YouTube videos who uh or YouTubers who who earn good living from uh just gaming and uh there’s a whole tournament circuit that you can get on as a gamer that’s what this particular teacher has done.

I want to know if you or anybody you know has gone from uh something that is just a hobby or a pastime to then making that their bread and butter. 13 3693 Somebody who knows something about this switch, Sue Ellson she’s a Career Expert she joins me now. Hi Sue.

Hi Tony.

Sue, it happens to people they might have a crisis in middle age they might have a wakeup moment they go I’m not enjoying my career.


There is something that I’ve dabbled in uh my whole life and I want to give that a go instead. Is it a course of action you recommend?

Well it really depends on what that hobby or interest is and a lot of people their hobby involves spending money not earning money.


So you’d have to ask yourself the question is there somebody who’s willing to pay for the outcome of whatever my hobby is.

Okay. Isn’t that funny you say that every time I bring home an aviation related trinket.


I say to my wife it’s okay it’s superannuation.


And she doesn’t she doesn’t believe me.


But for somebody in this uh who might be contemplating it um and and in your uh experience as a career expert does it pay off generally or are there great risks involved?

I would say generally speaking there are great risks involved particularly if you quit your day job in protest and then assume that your hobby’s going to make money the day after.


Most of these things have a very long burn. So a typical example would be, maybe say you collect motorbikes.


And you fix them up and you say right I can make a hobby out of this. But what if you can never sell them? What if you can never part with a product that you’ve created? You know it’s going to be difficult to make money out of that. Now there’s another issue that this whole topic brings up and that is if your career becomes obsolete. So there was this really amazing guy I met once who was a sign writer. Now nobody wants to pay for a hand painted sign anymore but there are plenty of cashed up baby boomers who were more than happy to pay for him to sign write their motorbikes, caravans, bikes


Trucks whatever and so although his career wasn’t suited in one area he could sort of find another audience who would pay for it and he’s doing what he loves, signwriting and getting paid handsomely and nobody quibs about the price.

You make a great point about um about I guess uh how lucrative the the hobby might be.


And if you are into bottles say and I’m not knocking that.


But the the example I used of somebody going to gaming. Gaming is a massive global industry.


So you are you aren’t you Sue you’re diminishing your risk of falling on your face if you throw your lot in with such a huge global pastime?

Yes and no because obviously if it’s a huge global pastime with an international audience there’s going to be a lot more competition. Now this gamer, he’s earning money out of YouTube videos that is helping other people with it a bit like I think he was an Australian of the Year nominee, the Maths Teacher.


Who created WooTube you know he he made money out of it. But let’s let’s look at the facts. You have to have a minimum of 1,000 subscribers, you have to have 4,000 watch hours you know there’s all these hurdles you have to overcome to get to that stage. You would be needing to win competitions, getting lots of subscribers, uh streaming your games live on multiple platforms, you might have memberships, you might have subscriptions you might have a Patreon there there’s all these little affiliate programs that you might have to set up as well and again most of those are very easy to join but to actually generate regular revenue out of it, you’d be better off with your $20 an hour in a coffee shop and just doing it for fun when you like kind of thing you know.

They’re also it’s also very time intensive and labour intensive uh to set up uh to go from the the hobby to the career. Sue uh you are uh remarkable and uh I really appreciate your time this afternoon um full bottle on that and I I’m grateful so thank you for your time.

You’re welcome.

Sue Ellson Career Expert.

Social Share

HOBBY TO CAREER // Do you have a hobby you would like to turn into a career? Could your hobby earn enough to pay the bills? Tony Moclair and I discussed this topic on Nine‘s 3AW 693AM Radio Melbourne today.

✅ gaming and pro-gamers making a living

✅ if it is realistic to change a hobby or pasttime into a career

✅ moving a hobby from spending money to earning money

✅ risks of quitting a job one day and expecting to earn money the day after

✅ can you sell your product?

✅ changing your skills to suit a new paying audience

✅ international benefits and risks

✅ YouTube requirements 1,000 subscribers, 4,000 watch hours

✅ winning competitions and gaining subscribers

✅ streaming games on multiple platforms

✅ affiliate programs

✅ earning revenue by the hour

✅ including the time and labour cost

Enjoy the show online at https://sueellson.com/blog/hobby-to-career-on-3aw-693-am-radio-melbourne-with-tony-moclair. This link also includes references and some other strategies I recommend if you are considering this option.

Thanks to Producer Bianca Johnston for reaching out!

➡️ Do you have any recommendations for anyone considering changing a hobby into a career?

➡️ Have you done it and what happened? Was it successful or did it return to being a hobby?

I would love to continue this discussion and share stories to inspire others.

#3awmelbourne #careers #sueellson

Further information

‘I quit my job’: How these gamers play for a living

Gigsters Book – for people wanting to use technology to attract aligned gigs

Podcast Recording of the Show – starts at 01:39:50 – 01:45:01

Additional Comments by Sue Ellson

A few other comments I would like to add…

  • on YouTube once you have reached the ‘requirements’ you can be paid by YouTube and by viewers via the ‘Thanks’ button
  • Patreon allows you to sell digital products
  • Gamers who win Competitions can on-sell their winning merchandise
  • there are many different ways to monetise online activities – but focus on the genuine ones not the ‘dodgy’ ones
  • remember that in Australia, you still need to declare all of your income in your tax return
  • you may also be approached to offer Referral Codes for discounts and special offers by ‘sponsors’ or ‘advertisers’
  • you may be invited to include banners and advertising in your content
  • you could have your own merchandise available for purchase
  • you need to be aware of the risks of making a hobby into a career – do NOT invest your life savings or mortgage your house – make sure the financials stack up and that you have planned, done the research, allocated the time and consulted an expert to review it all
  • whilst it may be a hobby or pasttime you enjoy in your leisure time, do you really want to do it full time?
  • are you prepared to do all of the additional tasks beyone the hobby or pasttime?
  • the hours you spend will not always create a reasonable dollar return – measure your hours and the profit over time
  • make sure you have a cash buffer or emergency fund
  • set realistic goals as it can take time
  • consider trialling your product or service in an existing market – like EBay, Etsy, LinkedIn etc before going to the expense of setting up a website, shop etc
  • see if you can sell your product via your social media first
  • find a mentor who can tell you the facts and potentially guide you through the process
  • make sure you get the WHOLE story from someone who has done it before. It may have taken them 2,000+ hours to be profitable – are you willing to make that investment?
  • add in the costs of developing your skills, products or services to the big picture
  • be aware of your interest becoming an addiction that you can’t stop when you need to let it go and find another revenue source to stay afloat
  • don’t rely on the bank of parents or friends to fund your venture – grow organically over time
  • start small and build and iterate along the way – you may start doing one thing but find something aligned along the way
  • make sure you use the most reliable platforms but don’t keep your enterprise there – platforms can change at any time and you don’t want to have all of your eggs in one basket
  • if you create an audience, see if you can find an aligned enterprise that would also like to reach that audience and collaborate – could be through link exchanges, shared promotion, podcasts, promotions etc
  • be aware that you will face competition and be prepared for it
  • move ahead in manageable steps and take calculated risks not knee jerk reactions
  • always, always, always build relationships and increase the size of your network – your network = your net worth

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