Over the years, we’ve discussed side gigs for pediatricians several times in our Physician Side Gigs Facebook group, One comment we sometimes get is that there aren't as many opportunities we get through our consulting databases or medical surveys, so we wanted to start our series on side gigs by specialty with pediatricians.
We honestly feel there is a lot of room for pediatrics in the side gig world. People put a lot of research and time into their children, and think most parents would love related content to be either created by, endorsed by, or taught by pediatricians. They'd also be likely to share these resources with others in their parenting groups, so marketing may be easier than for some other specialties.
Many side gigs in this realm revolve around content, course, or product creation, consulting, and influencer marketing, but they aren’t the only options. We’ll explore each of these, and other popular ones members commonly recommend, below.
If you're not a pediatrician and wanting to learn more about side gigs for your specific specialty, don't worry, we'll be releasing one for your specialty as well soon in this new series we are doing. In the meantime, follow the series on Instagram, where it's already well underway!
The Pediatrician as An Influencer and Content Creator
I always call my oldest child my “Google baby” because I spent a lot of 2AM nursing sessions searching the internet for answers to random thoughts and worries. I think about how much information I saw from sources I wasn’t sure of the credibility of. It’s great to have information from fellow parents, but I would’ve been eager to consume content coming from a pediatrician if it was readily available.
If I'd have seen a reasonably priced tutorial on the subject of concern coming from a physician, I would have been interested in purchasing it. The investment would have been well worth the information learned and the peace of mind it brought me in the middle of the night – and for several years after.
We would love to see more pediatricians getting into the physician influencer space. It can be a rewarding side gig not just in helping your community but in diversifying your income. If you can build your brand and get a website up with good SEO, the money can add up really quickly, and as a bonus you'd be able to help get quality information out there.
We aren’t suggesting you should do predatory marketing to scared and exhausted parents looking for answers and monetize off of their fear. There's such a demand for good info. Pediatricians are the perfect authorities to provide it, and you can choose how to do it in a way that feels right to you.
Whichever path (or paths!) you choose, make sure you narrow down to a specific niche or problem you want to help solve.
Pick a topic that you are excited about, such as child safety, developmental milestones, or education. Kids pretty much encompass everything, giving you plenty of options to explore to find the one you’re most excited about. Then really focus in on a niche. Say something other influencers aren’t covering already, or do it in such a way that makes you unique and stand out.
Some common issues we see mentioned in Physician Community Facebook group all the time when it comes to our children are:
Health conscious foods and snacks
Kid friendly exercises (yoga, sports, etc.)
Advice on sleep training kids
Surviving being new partners
Supporting children through mental health struggles
Once you have a following, there are several ways for a pediatrician to monetize their content as an influencer, including:
Brand partnerships and endorsements
Getting paid for content on mediums such as YouTube, TikTok, or Instagram
Many of these opportunities may come to you organically as a result of your social media following. You can click on the dedicated pages to learn more about some of these, and we go into some in more detail below.
If you’re not somebody who wants to regularly create content and build followers, consulting can be a great opportunity. A lot of the same recommendations and topics apply in regards to building a brand and establishing yourself as an expert, but what you do with that brand may look different.
There are opportunities to engage in consulting both on a 1:1 level as well as for large companies.
As every first time parent realizes, the struggle is real and you can only prepare so much for a fussy baby who won’t let you sleep before your next twelve-hour shift. Some favorite consulting opportunities for pediatricians on a 1:1 basis are:
ADHD consulting and treatment
Child obesity/healthy diet consulting
On a larger level, you could consult or serve as an advisor for companies or organizations in the pediatrics realm. This could include:
Guiding the direction of product development
Helping shape advertising campaigns
Informing them of research or science relevant to their company’s endeavors
Giving feedback on existing products or services
Brand partnerships are a great opportunity for influencers, physicians thought of as key opinion leaders, or physicians with successful practices . Anyone who is seen as an authority and is well respected in their community may be approached by companies wanting you to represent their brand to your audience, whether that’s 500,000 followers on social media or a stacked schedule of devoted patients at your private practice.
Brand partnerships can come from any kid related product, such as:
Formula and kids food
While these opportunities usually come to you, you can outreach as well if there is a particular brand you think is doing well and would love to work with. Either way, you’ll be assessed by things such as reputation, following, and prior success rates, so having data handy or even creating a media kit may be helpful depending on how seriously you want to build this side gig.
A lot of the advice we give in our becoming a physician startup advisor is relevant to becoming a brand ambassador.
If you decide to go down this route, we have a few key recommendations.
Know the brand well and ensure that you are comfortable having your reputation tied to them.
Understand how they are going to use your likeness and what oversight you will have in approving or declining how they use your content, quotes, or image.
Make sure you have a solid contract agreement in place before agreeing to anything. This includes aspects such as the right to sever ties and have them stop using your content if you no longer align with the direction they take, as well as outlining how you get paid based on profits they generate from you.
If you’re interested in particular products for kids and have a higher entrepreneurial interest, developing your own product for kids instead of partnering with an existing one is a great opportunity. We have several member side gigs developed by pediatricians. Check out examples of the products they’ve developed. While this will likely require more upfront time and costs associated with this side gig, it can lead to great income potential as well as the pride of creating something on your own.
As you scale this, you can think about ways to automate operations, partner with other companies, or even get acquired as a company.
Telemedicine is one of our most popular side gigs for our pediatrician members. There are a few ways to get set up for telemedicine.
Setup your own platform through your private practice
Make your own platform separately
Become a contractor for an established telemedicine company (join our Physician Side Gigs community if you’re interested in signing up for our telemedicine side gig opportunities database).
Being a contractor can impose certain limitations, such as a minimum requirement of hours worked a week or month or block scheduling. If you are considering working through an established company, make sure you check their requirements before signing on and what they offer, including malpractice and tail insurance.
Other Unique Side Gigs for Pediatricians
While we’ve covered the most popular side gigs, we’ve also seen some really unique ideas our amazing community members have come up with. With peds, there are so many unique angles you can take to find extra income (and of course you can always engage in a side gig that has nothing to do with your job as a pediatrician). Depending on the flexibility you have at your day job, we’ve seen our members do lots of things!
We’ve seen this become a successful side gig within our Facebook groups. Parents worry about safety and hygiene when it comes to piercing their children’s ears, which can make them seek out options other than taking their kids to random stores in the shopping mall. As a pediatrician, you have the medical knowledge to ensure a proper procedure, which parents are more than willing to pay for. This can be setup as an option at your private practice for extra side gig income on the side.
Other opportunities we’ve seen pediatricians explore:
DJ for parties
Pop-up daycare or summer care for sick kids with parents in a pinch
Children’s book author or illustrator
There are so many opportunities for side gigs for pediatricians. While we’ve highlighted some of our favorites, don’t limit yourself to only this list. While we feel like you’ll have so much more of an opportunity to create something that's your own, choose whichever one you’ll enjoy the most, as that can lead to the greatest rewards. If nothing on the list interests you, you can also explore opportunities such as chart review, surveys, expert witness work, and medical writing.