Take Your Hobby And Make It Your Business
Most of us have a hobby that brings us joy and rejuvenate us after a long week of responsibilities. Some may have even daydream of what it would be like to take that hobby and making it into a full-time business that we can thrive at, and pay the bills. But to create a successful business, requires more than just skills and passion. Building a sustainable business takes careful planning, deep commitment and a strong business attitude.
In order to turn your hobby into your business, here are some important steps that you will need to take:
1.) Have A Goal
Is this going to be a full-time business that is going to take care of all of your living expenses, recreational spending, insurance, investments and retirement and regular savings?
Perhaps you just want a part-time business to supplement your income from your day time job; a little extra cash to cover expenses.
Depending on your needs, the more you'll depend on the income from your hobby-business, the harder you'll need to work at it
2.) Brainstorm How To Make Money With Your Hobby
You may need to find more than one aspect of your hobby that you can make money from, to create a sustainable business . Think about all the ways that you could make money from your hobby. For example, if you're a wood carver, you could sell your carvings, but you also could teach carving classes, open carving shop, or design and sell carving design templates.
3.) Keep Your Enjoyment For Your Hobby
Will you still enjoy your hobby if you're doing it for money? Making money from your hobby may mean that you will be doing your hobby even on days that you may not feel like it. You will also have to meet deadlines, please demanding customers, manage unexpected expenses, financing and marketing. Be sure you're willing to juggle all these things before you turn your hobby into a business.
4.) Do It Well
Get really good at what you do — before you quit your job. To make money from your hobby, you've got to be good at it. If your skills aren't yet up to par, make a plan for improving them and put off your business idea until you're ready.
5.) Create A Business Plan
When you write a business plan, you'll evaluate the market for your hobby-business and prove to yourself that it's a viable business idea. You'll learn how much money you need to get started, you'll set goals, and you'll plan how you'll market the business to your customers.
6.) Adopt A Business Mindset
A hobby is something you do at your leisure. When you make it a business, you must show up to work. Think of your hobby as your career and make it a priority in your life.
7.) Learn About Marketing
You can be the best in the world at what you do, but if you don't market your business, you'll never get customers. Read up on small business marketing and observe how similar businesses promote themselves. Set up a website for your new business and get comfortable using social media. Start making connections online and in your community.
8.) Create A Brand
Your brand is your business identity and what you'll be known for. A strong brand helps your loyal customers recognize you, just as people instantly know that golden arches mean McDonald's. Decide on a business name, logo, font, and/or color scheme that reflect your business's “personality" and use them consistently in your website, social media, and other marketing.
9.) Get Your First Customer
Your first customer will give you confidence in your business idea and will make it psychologically easier to market yourself. If necessary, do your first job for free in exchange for a nice review or testimonial.
10.) Have Your Finances In Order
You must report your business income and expenses on your tax return and pay quarterly estimated taxes. You may also be required to collect sales tax. The easiest way to keep your business finances straight is to set up a bank account for your business, to keep business and personal finances separate. Meeting with an accountant and investing in accounting software can help get you started on the right foot.