Starting Your Crypto Side Hustle: 22 Tips for '22
Let me just begin by saying that money in crypto is broken.
It’s possibly the unfairest economic advantage you can have at this stage in human history. Sounds like an exaggeration, but you must understand that in crypto, it’s typical to measure your gains in multiples, not percentages. As in, "wow look I flipped this NFT for 25x", not "25%".
But it’s daunting to get into, and I can empathise. Where do you even begin? Here’s a guide to help you kickstart your crypto side hustle. None of this is financial advice, only my personal experience, but it is useful for most newcomers and moderately experienced investors.
1. Dollar cost average
Cultivate the discipline to buy a small amount of crypto every month. Accumulate quality crypto like BTC or ETH regularly, regardless of how high or low the price is. This small financial habit pays off immensely.
2. Use Twitter
TikTok and Instagram are great. Who doesn’t like challenges and influencer models? But for crypto, get Twitter. Follow the right thought leaders to get timely updates, profitable tips, and great memes.
3. Discord too
Discord has become the community messaging system of choice for crypto. Speak directly with the projects you’ve invested in, and get inside scoops from the teams before the rest of the world becomes aware of them.
4. Listen to podcasts
Three days in crypto is like three months on regular planet Earth. Podcasts summarise important developments. My favourite podcast while commuting is Bankless; they invite founders and industry leaders onto their weekly show.
5. Be a user, not just an investor
Speculating on tokens is one thing. But use decentralised applications too and see for yourself why so many traditional financial institutions are upset with how disruptive crypto is to their outdated business models. Side note: many crypto start-ups airdrop surprise money to genuine users. Airdrops from Uniswap, Ethereum Name Service, Looks Rare etc. are worth thousands of dollars each.
6. Get a web wallet
Download a crypto wallet like MetaMask. This allows you to interact directly with blockchains. Absolutely essential if you want to make money with some of the methods I’ll describe later in tips 8 to 11.
7. Get a hardware wallet
I’m paranoid about security and you should be too. If you’re serious about crypto, buy a Ledger or Lattice1 to avoid getting phished or scammed. So many seven-figure thefts could have been avoided if users just coughed up $100 for a device to protect themselves.
8. Buy an NFT
Non-Fungible Tokens are hot. They’ve been popping off while global markets perform terribly. Watch more celebrities and athletes hop on the Bored Ape bandwagon this year. Buy an inexpensive NFT just to learn, and observe how factors like community, utility, and scarcity are monetised.
9. Play P2E games
As a child wandering around Viridian Forest I would often think how great life would be if I could just beat up bug catchers and get paid for it. With play-to-earn (P2E) games, this is a reality. Try a modern Pokemon called Axie Infinity. Monster battles that you can pay your IRL bills with.
10. Try liquidity mining
Mining Bitcoin with GPUs is passe. A new form of producing crypto, called liquidity mining, has emerged. Earn crypto just for leaving your assets, or what we call your liquidity, in smart contracts. I personally use apps like Curve and Trader Joe for liquidity mining.
11. Create your own NFTs
NFTs have put the power to earn back in the hands of creators. Everyday a story appears about kids who have made stupendous wealth selling NFTs. Such as this kid who drew whales, or this kid who took selfies.
12. Write code
If logic and problem solving are your thing, pick up programming languages like Solidity for Ethereum, or Rust for Solana, so that you can code smart contracts. Many start-ups easily pay developers over a quarter milli per year.
13. Don’t borrow to invest
Investing involves risk. Don’t take out a loan to buy crypto. Don’t buy with your credit card. Don’t trade with leverage if you don’t know what you’re doing. Fastest way to Rekt City. Invest only money you can afford to lose.
14. Buy the dip
Often abbreviated to BTD, or BTFD for more expressive emphasis. This means when crypto sells off hard, use this as an opportunity to load up on your favourites while they’re cheap. For best results, do this only when you believe we’re in a bull market.
15. Keep some dry powder
Dry powder refers to cash reserves. You need ammo to open fire when things are cheap. So always have some stablecoins ready to BTFD when the crypto market gives you a 30% discount flash sale, as crypto is prone to do.
16. Don’t FOMO
Fear of missing out on crypto gains is real. You wanna chase! But when a crypto starts to pump, think of who’s selling to you. It’s the big boys with the big bags. Foresee someone buying your newly acquired crypto from you at an even higher price? No? stay away.
17. Do your own research
It’s the internet! Go beneath the surface and don’t take anyone’s word for anything. (Including mine.) A rigorous research process will help you avoid scams and discover gems. Use tools like Messari or Nansen to help you with your homework.
18. Stay focused
Don’t spread yourself too thin. Stick to a small bunch of core positions and avoid Shiny Object Syndrome. Too many things in your portfolio and you won’t have enough size to profit significantly even if your bets were correct.
19. Keep learning
Crypto land is where the money you make is directly proportional to the amount of effort you’ve put into learning this space. Every month there is a new narrative in the market. Whoever figures out the game gets paid.
20. Be comfortable taking profits
Sweep some chips off the table when you win. Always feels nice to lock in some gains, and you don’t go broke taking profits. Don’t spend money if it’s not profit that has been realised! Share the spoils with your loved ones.
21. A rising tide lifts all boats
Don’t confuse a bull market for skill. Everyone feels like a genius trader, when in reality it’s the whole market that’s up. It could all change at the drop of a hat, so don’t let it get to your head. Make decisions objectively.
22. Stay humble
Be a nice human being. It’s not an easy time in the world for many of your friends and family. Help to educate and don’t be a douche. Enjoy your wealth quietly – knowing you’ve won your game is good enough.
About the writer
Dennis LK is the co-founder of Powerbomb Finance, a crypto startup in Singapore that helps you earn double digit yields on your dollars, except the yield is paid in a crypto of your choice, such as bitcoin or ether.