￼9 Ways To Turn Your Passion Into a Business
This is a guest post by Victoria Greene, Brand Marketing Consultant & Freelance Writer
We all have our passions, some of which we could use to fuel the creative energies needed to start a business. Living off something you’re truly passionate about is a real dream come true, but can it come true for you? Well, the only way to find out is if you try. A lot of people don’t ever try, either through lack of confidence or simply not knowing how. If you’re somebody who wants to try and turn their passion into a business, here are 9 ways to get started, from getting some professional training to online crowdfunding.
1. Start With Your Friends & Associates
Obviously telling your friends about your passion won’t instantly provide you with a business, but it’s a good place to start. Your friends could be some of your first customers (and they can tell their friends too). Make your friends into regular customers so that you can start saving money on the side and then make some real investments. Passions should never be private and word of mouth is very important. Treat early adopters and your first customers like VIPs, and gather insight from them. Your friends will want to support you, which is great for your confidence, but be aware that they might not always be brutally honest about your products — you can’t rely on them forever….
2. Get Some Professional Training
Have you got a specialized skill that you use for your passion project? If you’ve never been professionally trained, then you should definitely think about doing so. This can make sure that you have completely mastered your skill and will probably give you some new ideas about its business applications. Training is a great way to learn more about your skills and personality — definitely a great way to start a business.
3. Post Your Work Online
If you’re writing a novel, doing a series of paintings or anything like that, then you should try posting your work online. There are plenty of online communities that would welcome you with open arms if you’re any good (like reddit). Getting feedback can help you to hone your skills and improve your work. You could even put out a series of ads in the first instance to drive traffic to your work and website — a great way to capture a customer base immediately.
4. Create An Online Store
Do you create products that people might like to buy? Then you should know that it’s actually very easy for you to create an online store using one of the many ecommerce solutions available to people who want to start a business. If anyone’s interested in your product, this gives an easy way for them to buy from you, and a website is a great way for you to tease out your brand and future direction. And with very small set-up costs, an online store is the perfect way to validate a product or business idea, before you start getting ahead of yourself and buying office space!
5. Visit Local Trade Shows
There’ll probably be some local trade shows going on somewhere near you – you should try to attend one soon. Find out if anyone else is doing something similar to see if you can find any inspiration. If at all possible, you could arrange to make an official appearance at the next one, where you could showcase your product. Meeting people and associates at professional events is a big step on the transition from hobbyist to pro — relish in your newfound professionalism.
6. Get A Part Time Job
What does this have to do with anything? Well, the thing about freelancing is that you may not always be making enough to get by on. To stop this from being too much of an issue, you should get a part time job that you can fit your freelancing around. It gives you a safety net and it also leaves you with time to focus on cultivating your business. Having something to fall back on can give you the freedom and the confidence to pursue your passions fearlessly, while you wait for the money to kick in.
7. Find A Job In The Industry
This isn’t a choice for everyone. This is what to do if you want to play the long game. Find yourself a full time, contracted position with a business that does something similar to what your hypothetical business would do. While there, watch and observe. This will help you to identify the many aspects of maintaining a business that you might not have thought about before. This is the stealth mode approach to starting your own thing, but an incubation period is important, so don’t dismiss it!
Have you got a really great, artistic idea that you’re sure a lot of people would love to see realized? If so, you might like to try using a website called Kickstarter. Tell everyone about your passion project and ask them for the money you need in order to make it a reality. It’s a mutually beneficial exercise and many many businesses have found fame and money on Kickstarter…
9. Contact Local Stores
Another option for those whose passion project involves the creation of something people might like to buy. Why don’t you go to a local, independently owned shop and let them know what you’ve got to offer? You may be able to arrange for them to display and sell your products. A great starting point for a business — local community stores and sellers are so important and have been the backbone of many great owner-run businesses and brands. You can also have the same approach for non-physical products: speak to local companies and groups and hang out in popular co-working spaces.
So that should give you some idea of the different ways to start transforming your passion into a fully fledged business. Every business is going to need a different approach – just make sure that you’re doing your best to market it. Check out our earlier blog post on Twitter marketing. Think about some of the digital marketing services available to you that could help you kick-start your dreams! What’s your dream business?
Victoria Greene: Brand Marketing Consultant and Freelance Writer.
I work with ecommerce businesses & marketing teams to create content and targeted digital strategies. I’ve helped countless people start up the business of their dreams & now I’m running my own!