Monetizing finance knowledge?

College senior here already low on cash after his internship and in dire need of beer money... any idea how I could go about making money doing some sort of freelance finance-related work? I tried writing an article for Seekingalpha, for instance, but they didn't like it enough to publish it, which if I had to guess is due to my mediocre writing skills. However, I know my macro and also am pretty good at modeling and the like so if anyone has any ideas please fire away!

Also, attached the article -- maybe someone who knows how Seekingalpha works can give some advice.

Comments (18)

Oct 2, 2018 - 2:43pm

Thanks for the suggestion! I concurrently tutored for two companies last year, and although I go to a large public state school I hardly got any work. I think it's because of how easy my school's Finance program is. Perhaps I'll look back into this, but would rather some sort of remote work if possible due to schedule limitations.

Oct 2, 2018 - 2:49pm

Yeah I went to a large state school as well and found that work was a bit sparse. If you're low on Finance options (after all there aren't a lot of people failing out of finance) you should try to target lower level entry courses that everyone has to take. The struggling students are filtered out of those pools before they enter a major like accounting or finance and therefore there is less demand for tutoring. Try Calc / stat / algebra if you're comfortable with your abilities.

In terms of the Seeking Alpha article I'm not sure I can comment on your shortcomings. I read the link you provided. It seems a bit erratic, you jump around as though it is conversational, try to refine it, make the writing more formal, might work?

You could always try to find companies (local restaurants / food places / etc) and do finance consulting for them. The only issue with this is you'd have to recognize a shortcoming in the business itself, address it, and pitch a solution BEFORE any guarantee of monetary returns.

I also worked as a TA, got a few thousand dollars for hosting office hours once a week and responding to emails / grading assignments / proctoring exams.

Oct 3, 2018 - 5:29pm

You can make pretty good money tutoring younger kids too. I made $20/hr through college tutoring middle schoolers and it was the easiest gig ever. You can make some good connections too (wealthy parents).

Oct 2, 2018 - 3:11pm

One of the TA's I had would write articles for seeking alpha and make corresponding youtube videos. He'd direct people from seeking alpha to youtube and vice versa. If you're looking to get into finance, most likely writing is going to be an important part of the job. My suggestion is keep at it. Best advice I've received on the topic is to write in the active voice. Not only will this help your writing be more clear and concise, it will also be more interesting to the reader (Don't take this rambling paragraph as an "active voice" example). Also, write about what you find interesting rather than what you think will appeal to the masses.

I've thought about throwing together an excel training course or something like that but the market is flooded with them. It would take serious effort to make a dent in it.

Oct 2, 2018 - 4:03pm

Thanks for the advice -- I guess I'll keep plugging at the Seekingalpha hustle. Also, I already have a job lined up, and the most writing I'll have to do is Powerpoint slides/market color e-mails which isn't something I struggle with.

Agreed on the Excel training course thought. There's about a 0% chance I could one-up Wall Street Prep; would just be a waste of time.

Oct 2, 2018 - 3:43pm

I don't know much about Seeking Alpha's writing style. But if you're going to submit an essay, especially if it's for a job application, you want to make sure it has no grammar mistakes. I have an SEO writing side gig and rely heavily on online grammar tools to make sure I don't make any writing mistakes.

Personally, I use Grammarly. It uses a freemium business model; it'll inform you about basic grammar mistakes for free and will inform you about more sophisticated errors if you subscribe for $11 a month. Grammarly detected 6 basic grammar mistakes and 14 premium mistakes in your essay so maybe that is one reason why they did not consider publishing your article.

Recruiters get turned off by grammar mistakes when they detect them on your CV. I'm pretty sure news/publishing companies detest them as much, if not more. So make sure you proofread plenty of times or you can save yourself the time and effort by having a grammar correction software do all the dirty work for you.

Oct 3, 2018 - 12:02pm

Consult for small businesses. Create a YouTube channel and monetize that (I've got a good friend of mine who makes RE videos and cleared $17k last month from it. He's earned well over $100k all in). Or create some course you can teach basic stuff to HS Seniors or College Freshmen. Lots of people have the bs amazon drop shipping whatever courses or stock picking courses and pull in dumb money from it.

“The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.” - Nassim Taleb
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Feb 26, 2019 - 4:02pm

I like how you casually suggest these things as though any idiot could do them. Do you not realize how many people (>90%) fail at making any significant amount of money through these venues? Sure, you may be able to argue that half of them are lazy/incompetent, but many of them aren't and still can't succeed. This is like telling the OP to just buy a lottery ticket and everything will work out.

Feb 26, 2019 - 4:11pm

I agree and disagree with you. I don't think I insinuated any of it was easy at all. I should mention most of those people put in >40 hours a week to make it take off as much as it has. I disagree with the lotto ticket analogy. I don't think it's simply dumb luck if you succeed or not.

For a comparison, it's mentioned a lot on this forum to go to HBS -> BX/ KKR and nobody bats an eye. I would say succeeding on YouTube is about the same odds. Getting into HBS usually starts when someone is 14 and able to get good grades too... YouTube is indifferent to that.

TLDR: It's really damn hard but not impossible.

“The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.” - Nassim Taleb
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