Not sure what business you should start? This video will help you decide…
Choosing a business to start is both fun and frustrating. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to starting a business. If there was, everyone would already own one.
The key to narrowing down the limitless options is to choose something you love to do and something you already know how to do really well. This combination will reduce your learning curve and make it easier to stick with it when you encounter obstacles.
As promised in the video, I’ve created an Entrepreneurial Self-Assessment that you can download and complete. It’ll help you narrow down your options and give you some ideas about how to monetize your passion and know-how.
If you don’t have any idea what business to start, spend a good amount of time on this exercise. If you have an idea in mind already, it’s still a good idea to do this assessment to sanity check your idea and to identify ways to monetize it.
A post like this wouldn’t be complete without a list of business ideas for inspiration. You may not have these skill-sets, but you may be able to apply these ideas to your area of expertise. Keep an open mind and think about how you can start a business doing something similar.
If you have a knack for capturing things on camera, here are some business ideas for you:
- Start a photography studio…duh. This is a brick-and-mortar type business, but you can easily start it out of your house in your spare time.
- Sell photography equipment online. Shop around for close-outs at the big retail stores, look on CraigsList, go to garage sales, etc. Buy discontinued or gently used equipment and sell it on Amazon or Ebay.
- Create a marketing package for photographers. A lot of professional photographers don’t have the time or the skills to market their services effectively. You can create a marketing package that handles it for them. It’s best if you have some marketing experience for this one.
- Create an e-learning course. If you can teach photography skills, you can create a video and/or audio training course and sell it online and through affiliates. Checkout Udemy.com as a means of distributing your course, as well. Get additional monetization through affiliate offers.
- Write an eBook and sell it or give it away to drive traffic. This is a popular business model for the passive income types. Once you’ve written your eBook, you can sell it through affiliate programs like ClickBank or through Amazon. You can also give it away in exchange for email addresses that you then use to market your other services, or to market affiliate offers from other people. Checkout SmartPassiveIncome.com for more information on this business model.
Have you been building websites at your day job or for fun? There’s lots of business opportunities for you:
- Start your own website design agency. You can build the websites yourself, but a more scalable option is to assemble a team of outsourced designers to build the websites for you. That would free your time to sell your services and project manage the designers.
- Teach people how to build websites. There’s a growing number of people and small business owners who want to learn how to build or maintain their own websites. Create an online or offline course and start teaching them.
- Build a wizard system like Wix or 1&1 for a niche market like dentistry, photography, veterinarians, lawyers, doctors, real estate agents, etc. The system should be designed around their specific niche to make it more appealing and valuable. You can also provide industry specific content to sweeten the pot or for an extra fee.
- Create WordPress themes and sell them on ThemeForest.
- Create WordPress plugins and sell them through your website. There are lots of free plugins but the best ones cost anywhere from $20 to $100. Checkout WooThemes for an example of a successful business that sells plugins.
- Offer related services like SEO, Social Media Management, and Pay-Per-Click Management. There’s a lot of money to be made offering these types of time-saving services to businesses. Choose a niche and put together a package of services designed specifically for it.
- Create a marketing package for web designers and sell it to them. See #3 under photography for more on this idea.
I could go on and on but this post is getting out of control! If you’d like me to brainstorm a specific skill-set or idea, post it in the comments and I’ll add it to the post.
You can apply a lot of these idea to other industries, such as martial arts, baking, financial services, real estate, horseback riding, computer services, books, writing, etc. If you have a passion and a skill-set, I guarantee there are ways to monetize it and turn it into a business.
One thing I haven’t mentioned is starting a true dotcom. If you have an area of expertise and you spot a need for a website to automate or enhance the experience of a target market, you can hire developers on Elance.com to build it for you at a very reasonable price. A web startup is a whole other can of worms, but it has the potential to be the most lucrative.
- Download and complete the Entrepreneurial Self-Assessment.
- Watch the Steve Jobs video about doing what you love.
- Brainstorm business ideas that involve doing something you love and know how to do.
- Attend events and learn as much as you can about the business you decide to start.