Side Hustle Spotlight
We are going to start a new series that spotlights side hustles from various people from around the nation, beginning with aerial imagery. This series will hopefully shine some light on new ways for you to make some extra income that Andrew and I do not have the resources or talent to try out.
A Full-Time Teacher, Coach, Husband, and Father Brings Aerial Imagery to Life
Today we will talk with Mr. Haskovec, the co-founder of WHaerial Imagery.
I know Mr. Haskovec through my years in high school as he was my American history teacher about 15 years ago. Wow! I cannot believe it has been that long!
And, yes, I still find it strange to call Mr. Haskovec by his whole name after so many years. 😀
Somehow, this full-time teacher, coach, husband, and father has found time to start this aerial imagery side hustle.
Who Is WHaerial?
WHaerial imagery is a drone photography and videography business located in Northeastern Iowa. They provide customers with new marketing perspectives and opportunities. A recent project that Wayne completed was for a golf course in Waverly, Iowa. The video shows off the course from a unique perspective that traditional photography and videography cannot.
Aerial imagery has really started to boom over the last five years as the technology becomes cheaper. There continues to be more and more creative ways to capture different industries using drones. We have started to see this in the real estate business as drones are able to show off properties very well.
WHaerial has only just begun this side hustle but is already publishing some great work! Let’s see how Wayne and his business partner got started, what it took to get into the field, and what are the challenges of drone photography.
1. What do you hope comes out of this side hustle?
Well, to be honest, and upfront….this is a first time endeavor. I am hoping that this start-up will blossom into something that lends itself to more opportunities down the road. The goal is to grow this aerial imagery business into something that will provide not only extra revenue but opportunities to expand. My partner and I decided to officially start a business that features a fully insured and licensed drone company.
There are thousands of drones out and about, but many are not licensed or insured to fly commercially. We are hoping to provide that security and opportunities to our future customers in the Cedar Valley of Iowa.
2. What motivated you to start this venture?
Just over a year ago, I was able to fly one of the first Phantom 4 drones in our area. I immediately fell in love with the creativity and technology packaged in such a small device. The opportunity to capture never seen before areas of my family’s property turned into an absolute passion for me.
As I became better at piloting the drone, I decided to purchase my own drone.
The purchase soon turned into a serious hobby. I was able to show friends and family how unique the drone perspective was. Soon I was capturing images and video and including those creative pieces onto my social media. The excitement and fun I was having made me realize that I could potentially jump into a market of professional aerial imagery. It was a pretty easy to convince myself that I should go ahead get certified, and make money doing something I enjoy.
3. What did it take to get up and running for professional aerial imagery?
My partner and I laid out all of the potential assets we had, which included the two drones that I currently owned. I also invested $150 in taking the FAA certification exam at a local community college that allows for such testing. The insurance and fees for creating our LLC have completed our initial startup costs.
Obviously, there will be more costs down the road….but our hope is to get off the ground (no pun intended) running. In terms of being able to pilot the drone….anyone can do it. The trick, however, is doing it the right way. Making sure you take the time to follow protocol in pre-flight and flight. I have spent the past year getting better at making turns manually without jagged video.
Experience is the name of the game!
4. What is your weekly time commitment to the business?
As of now, it is hard to speculate what future weeks will look like. As of now, we are just waiting on making sure all of our paperwork is in order. My estimation is that once we get into the swing of things, we will be looking at 10-12 hours of pure droning and video editing.
In addition, time will be spent on social media helping to promote our product. Without a doubt, that number per week will increase. With that growth, we are hoping to enlist more certified pilots into WHaerial.
5. How are you going about to getting work?
Social Media! Between Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter….we hope to boost sales dramatically as we begin to actively search for projects.
We also have several connections within our area in the real estate and agriculture realms but are going to be diving deeper. As we build our numbers via social media, we hope to showcase our work on our website. Our most recent project has been highlighted through the use of Facebook.
The opportunities to connect and grow are limitless in the world we live in today.
6. What challenges have you run into so far?
I believe one of the biggest challenges we will have is staying ahead of the curve. Even though there are droning/aerial image companies out there, we are hoping to get a foot up on the competition in our area.
The other issue that potentially could create some difficulties is the expense in keeping our equipment up and running. The drones that we operate can take 20-megapixel photos along with 4K video. Continuing to stay current and state of the art in the world of droning will be something that will be continuing to fuel our company.
7. Do you have any advice for anyone looking to get into aerial imagery?
My biggest piece of advice is to read all manuals before flying! Know your drone inside and out, and account for your surroundings. Helping the drone community to look as professional as possible, will allow more opportunities to drone in the future!
8. Shameless plug
Head over to one of, or all of, WHaerial’s social media and give them a follow! Personally, I really enjoy the Instagram account! There are some pretty aerials of the Iowa countryside.
If aerial imagery sounds like an awesomely fun side hustle, go for it! If you are interested, I would follow Mr. Haskovec’s advice of getting your FAA license as well insurance. This might be the difference as to why a customer chooses you over another company.
Also, do not forget to practice flying your drone, a lot! You will want to create high-quality videos for customers which will require you to fly the drone smoothly as you film.
If aerial imagery is not your thing but you are still looking to earn some extra money and need some ideas on how to do that, then check out our Ways to Make Money page. Here Andrew and I provide 70, yes 70, ways you can make money outside of your 9 to 5 job. We even test these out for you so you can easily figure out what side hustle is best for you.