Creative Money Projects
By Steve Gillman
What I am calling money projects might also be referred to
as "creative marketing arrangements." The basic idea
is that you make money helping other businesses make money, and
you do so in a way that gets you in and out of the process in
a relatively short time. That's why I use the word "project."
You don't have to commit to working for years or even months
to do these deals.
To explain I will describe a a real deal which I read about
years ago. The numbers may be recalled incorrectly (although
I tend to mess up other details more than numbers), but the basic
principles will be clear. It was a deal done by a marketer who
was helping a chain of furniture stores. The owner wanted a creative
way to sell more chairs and couches. Our marketer had the idea
that people buying these things--and especially the furniture
meant for relaxing on--might also want to get some exercise.
He suggested that a health club membership could be given away
with any chair or couch bought. The owner of the stores liked
Next, our marketer approached the owner of a large chain of
health clubs. It normally cost $200 for a six-month membership,
but the marketer paid just 75 cents each and bought 5,000 memberships.
You might wonder why the owner of the health clubs would accept
this deal, but there is a good reason--an it isn't the $3,750
in cash he got up front. You see, he had space was available
in his clubs, which meant there would be little additional cost
to add the new members, but--and this is the important point--some
of these new members would enroll again at the full price after
their six months were done.
Next our marketer went back to the owner of the furniture
stores and sold him the 5,000 memberships for $3 each. The promotion
he suggested involved giving away a health club membership to
anyone who bought any piece of furniture. The furniture store
owner could afford this at $3 each, and could honestly say that
the retail value of the gift was $200. The marketer pocketed
a profit of $11,250 ($2.25 profit times 5,000 memberships) for
making this happen.
Money projects like this can be done relatively quickly. This
one took a few weeks, and everyone was happy. Sales went up sharply
in the furniture stores. Many customers never used their health
club memberships, or used them rarely (not surprising), but about
10% actually paid their $200 dues in full after the first six
months. Those 500 memberships generated $10,000 of revenue the
health club chain wouldn't have otherwise had, in addition to
the original $3,750. They also undoubtedly had future renewals
Now, consider what it took to make the $11,000 or so that
the marketer made for himself. If you had thought of it, you
would have had to find a health club business that waned more
customers, and convince a furniture store owner to buy $200 memberships
for $3. That doesn't sound impossible, does it?
This is just one example of many possibilities for creative
How Much Can You Make?
There is no way to say what you can make. It quite obviously
depends on your level of creativity, motivation, skills and the
types of deals you find or create.
Ways to Make More | Related Opportunities
Let's look at what makes these deals work. Items that can
be bought cheap but have a high perceived value are a start.
Low incremental costs for additional customers helps too. A health
club operating below capacity has to pay only bit more for water
usage and wear-and-tear on the equipment when they get a new
customer. A complementary or universally valued product is needed
too. Giving away free tickets to a dog-racing track might not
With these principles in mind, here's an idea for a small
deal. You buy a thousand tickets good for any movie from a struggling
local movie theater for 50 cents each. They have little additional
cost for each of these customers since the seats are not filling
up. Also, they might average $4 or so at the concession stand
from each customer. You investment is $500.
Now you approach the owner of a chain of restaurants in the
same town as the theater. You offer to sell the whole 1,000 tickets
to him for $1,750, or $1.75 each. At that price he can afford
to give a ticket away with any meal purchase. A few hundred more
spent for advertising and he has a great promotion that boosts
What do you make for this creative marketing money project?
Only $1,250. It is a small deal, after all. On the other hand,
it is a way to get some experience doing deals like this, it
may have taken you less than a week, and you only risked $500.
By the way, if you really want to reduce your risk, you can
make all the arrangements before spending any of your own money.
Get the theater owner to agree, talk to the restaurant owner,
and only then buy the tickets. Of course if you don;t already
have the tickets the restaurant owner might think to call the
theater and buy them himself for less.
Qualifications / Requirements
Consider how much money you can risk on a project and start
looking for opportunities.