Why You Need To Diversify Your Income And How To Do It

Financial Advice from Capital City Marketing Founder Erica Rae

         Entrepreneurship can be a vehicle to do what you love on your own terms, but for Erica Rae of Capital City Marketing Co, it’s an essential element to a wealth portfolio. After working for three high-profile companies that shut down suddenly, Erica quickly learned the importance of multiple income streams. Since then, she’s made it her life’s work to educate people of color on how to build wealth. 

1. Monetize your expertise outside of work. 

 In 2012, Erica held a junior publicist position working with celebrity clients and pro-athletes like Michael Beasley and Adrian Peterson. However, when the owner of the firm passed away, Erica once again found herself giving her all to a company only to have the opportunity end due to no fault of her own. This was her third experience working for a business that folded. “I just felt like my life was just this staggering event of being on my way somewhere then it comes to a stop. At that moment I said I can no longer put my eggs in one basket.”

         Insert Capital City Marketing Co., a business Erica built while maintaining jobs in banking and for Google. Through work, she became a certified financial consultant with licensing for life and health insurance. Outside of work, she used her knowledge and skillsets to build a marketing and financial-counselling practice. “All those skills pulled together to create my business. I started part-time after work. I show people what they can do with what they have from start to finish whether it be an existing policy, investing, [marketing] or fixing credit.” 

Figure out your expertise and start teaching people or consulting on the side. Erica says, “Even if you don’t have money, there are so many things you can do outside of your job.” 

2. Keep a running portfolio of work you produce. 

         Whether working for a job or someone else, Erica excelled by documenting her work. This gave her the arguing power to advocate for more money. “I have a portfolio of things I do inside of corporate and outside of corporate whether it’s speaking engagements or seminars. If I’m trying to get a promotion, I show my work. Show them what they’re missing.” 

         When forming a business, documentation of past work and experience builds leverage and adds to your quality and worth. Erica’s junior publicist position and connections helped her secure celebrity clients when she first started Capital City Marketing. Don’t sleep on your experiences, use them to your benefit. 

3. Educate yourself and invest. 

         In the era of fighting for women’s equal pay, Erica encourages every woman to “be in control of your own destiny in terms of finances.” She does this by reading books such as Cashflow Quadrantby Robert Kiyosaki and The Billion Dollar Betby Bob Johnson, watching YouTube channels like London Real, and investing through apps like Acorns. “I have vehicles set up that I’m investing in and there are so many things that I do. So even though my paycheck may read differently [from a man’s], my annual income won’t compare.” 

4. Establish accounts that help you now and later.

In addition to building multiple income streams, a solid diversified portfolio should also prepare you for the long run. “One vehicle I use is life insurance,” Erica shared. “There’s so much you can do with a policy while you’re living to create a supplemental income for when you retire. People think ‘I’ll be dead’ and don’t really care.” This thinking is a common myth within our communities. Life insurance is not just for when you die.

Erica went on to explain, “You can use a policy while you’re living so you don’t have to go to a bank. You don’t have to ask for a loan when you’re ready to buy a house. You can set yourself up as your own bank. Put your money in tax sheltered accounts like annuities.” According to Erica, millennials have work to do when it comes to long term finances, life insurance, and hiding money from Uncle Sam. 

At the end of the day, when it comes to building wealth, Erica suggests seeking financial education and expanding your portfolio. Hit her up on Instagram @IamEricaRae and know that Capital City Marketing is willing to help. 

Written by Mizz Jasz

Jasmine “Mizz Jasz” Hawkins is a Philly-based educator, writer, and community organizer. Jasz serves as president and founder of the non-profit Urgent 365 Inc., author of Urgent Conversations: Race, Reality, and Responsiblity, and host of the Pecola Breedlove and the Freedom Party open mic. Her work and heart are grounded in the empowerment of women and the social climate of the Black community as a whole. When she isn’t working, Jasz loves watching romantic comedies, traveling, and working out.