Choosing the right business to start, based on what you know about yourself thus far, is the first thing you need to do to build your dream. Let’s look at how you can choose the right business for you.
Step #1: Know How Much You Need / Want to Earn
This may seem like a weird place to start, but whether we like it or not, money is how we pay for our lives. It’s what enables us to get the education we want, go to the doctor, buy homes, enjoy entertainment and so much more.
Right now, you’ll want to look at the “pie in the sky” and the “big, hairy audacious dream” lifestyle and pick a number that you’d like to earn. Justify it by creating a little one-page budget, so you know it works.
Consider everything, including how much tax you’ll need to pay and potential business expenses. When it comes to earnings, the only thing that really matters is what you take home. That’s the money you can spend.
Step #2: Know Your Skill Set
The skills you have right now are essential to identify. What are you good at? As you evaluate different types of businesses, it’s imperative that you know what you do well, what you do poorly, and what you don’t ever want to do again.
You can start by listing the things you have done before, what you have education for doing, credentials for, and anything you’ve done for fun as well that required skill. Right now, just make a list without opinion or thought as to whether you like it or not. You may have the skill and hate it, but that’s not important right this moment.
Step #3: Identify the Right Type of Business for You
Considering your skill set, what industry do those fall in? Knowing the niche and industry where your skills fit in best is helpful. You may also decide to start with a particular type of business because you already know you want to do it. If you already think you know, what is it about that niche that calls to you?
One thing to consider is how much it costs to start that particular business. It’s also important to know what type of business you do not want to do. For example, if you absolutely never want to do anything with MLM, that’s great. Make it your goal to choose something else.
Based on your skills, write down a few different ideas that come to mind. Again, don’t use any type of judgment right now. After you’re done, you can go through and mark through the “no” ideas and highlight the “yes” ideas.
Step #4: Determine Who You Like Serving
One thing to look at in any given industry is the type of people you like working with. If you don’t like the people who are served by that type of business, you’ll hate your business. If you like the people who you serve, you’re going to love your business and feel good about it.
Write down a description of the type of person you’d like to work with. What are their values? What are their problems? Do they have money to pay for problem solving? How many are they? Can you earn a living from that audience?
Step #5: Know Why You Will Do This
It’s also important to always keep in mind why you are choosing a particular type of business. Know your why – whether it’s because you had a problem that you found the solution for, or if it’s because you like working with the type of people that this business serves, or something else. Your story is your story. Be sure to tell it to your audience.
Taking the time to explore alternatives and new opportunities before you get started is all part of the process and journey of becoming an entrepreneur. Many people spend a lot of time researching until they find just the right thing. Once you do find the right thing, you can easily get started in your business. Let’s look at the ways.
Know How You’ll Manage All Aspects of Your Business
Once you know the niche, the industry, and the people you’ll serve, you can start thinking about how you’ll run and manage your business. A typical business has several aspects that needs to be managed. Yours may have all of these or only some, but you need to consider how you’ll deal with each one that applies to your business.
How will you produce your product or solution? What type of product are you making? Is it physical or digital? How and who will make it? How much will it cost? What are all the parts you need to work together to get it to work?
For example, if you want to promote and sell affiliate software, that’s a digital product. Will you outsource the project to someone who is going to code it for you? Can you code it? You need to plan out every single aspect of production and know who is responsible for it.
Research and Development
How will you research your audience to keep creating amazing products for them? How will you research your competition? What means will you use to compile the data you collect? How often will you look at it and what will you use it for?
It depends on your business, but all companies have to make purchases. You need to create a process for purchases, even if it’s just you. How do you decide the price and who to choose to buy from? How will you keep track of the vendors you use? Who will maintain the relationships?
No business can succeed without marketing. What type of marketing do you want to do, and how will you do it? In this case, you may need to start with your budget and then choose your marketing method based on how much you can invest.
Online marketing is an important marketing method to use today. You can probably get started online less expensively than television, but you should determine which is best based on your business and your audience’s needs.
Do you need to hire people, work with joint venture partners, or bring on some affiliates? What software will you use? What features should it have? How will you handle sales? What type of software do you need to manage your customer relationships?
For example, when someone buys from you, that’s only one part of the sale. There are transactional emails and follow-ups that must be done to ensure customer happiness and satisfaction so that you can create repeat buyers.
How will you handle your freelancers, employees, and others who work with and for you? Are you aware of the legalities of each? Is there a professional you can outsource to on a contract basis that you know about? Do you want to hire someone full time to deal with this? If you have several employees and contractors, it’s in your best interest to have someone on staff or a contractor you can call on to ensure you’re doing things legally.
Accounting and Finance
What is your chosen business structure? How will you do your bookkeeping? Will you use a specific program? Will you hire a CPA to help? Do you have the skills to do it yourself? What about paying your taxes? Paying quarterly taxes is imperative. You must pay on every single dollar you earn from day one of your business.
Getting this appropriately organized is imperative. More than one business has taken a fall even though they were profitable due to unpaid taxes, and sometimes they even end up paying more than they should due to poor organization and commingling of business funds and personal funds.
You need to figure out each of these characteristics of your business and figure out how you’ll deal with them. You may need to develop a team, find mentors to help you, take a course, or any number of actions to get started. Go through each area with your business in mind to make an action list.