By Shanshera Quinn
Moonlighting as a part time entrepreneur:
You don’t have to quit school or give up your 9 – 5 job to earn the money you want. However, you will have to put in a little extra work. It is well worth it, however, when you discover that you can take your financial destiny into your own hands. One of the fastest ways you can take control of your finances is to try your hand at becoming a part time entrepreneur and starting a small business on the side. The thought of running a business can really be intimidating for most people, yet it is one of the most lucrative ways to supplement your income. Starting a business doesn’t have to involve buying or renting property, asking for a business loan or throwing caution to the wind and quitting your day or night job for that matter. Sure, there may be opportunities you run across that may require that but I am one who is quite content with starting small.
In this article, we will explore a strategic 4 step process that will help you kick start your side business. It all starts with taking a good long look in the mirror because it starts with YOU. You will definitely need to bring your best YOU to the table and offer something that people truly value or want. What I am referring to is called monetizing your assets or shall I say, making money off your talents. Here is how you can begin.
Step 1: Identify your most valuable assets:
Begin by going through this exercise where you ask yourself the following questions: What are you really good at? What do you enjoy doing? What do others seek you out for? What can you do without even thinking about it? What experiences or life events have you overcome? Really explore your answers to these questions as somewhere in there may be a great service or product that you can offer to a specific segment of the population. For example, my husband takes great pictures at events. He captures those incidents that, while in the thick of the event, are often missed. People say “oh, wow, I can’t believe you got that” or “oh my…I didn’t even know that happened”. He has a way of noticing those precious moments and catching them on camera for people to cherish forever. I call that a talent, an asset, a skill because it is not something that everyone possesses or is interested in doing. I can barely work my phone camera, let alone a professional one. So, look at what you do and the things that people really appreciate about you and start thinking of ways you can monetize it.
Step 2: Identify the people who can benefit most from these talents and are willing to pay for it:
After you identify your talent, you have to determine if there is a market for it. Is it something that people would be willing to pay for? You can start by asking them. You can also look to see if others are offering this service or product, whether online or in your community. If they are, you know that there is a market for it. If they aren’t, there is a reason why. If no one else is offering it, then it is likely an indication that they have not found the market for it. It may be possible to make money off of it but it may prove quite difficult. Most ideas are not completely new. People often take something already in existence and put their own spin on it. For example, one of my talents is writing; not something I invented right? The reason people seek me out for their writing projects are that I can capture their viewpoint, I can write to influence and I write from a Kingdom perspective. Look around to see if your talent can bring something of value to people. For example, can you help them look better, feel better, achieve more or make more money? If so, then do your homework and determine if it is a service or project that they are willing to pay for.
Step 3: Determine if you need certifications or additional training for mastery and get it.
If you need certification or additional training to be at the top of your game, then go get it; especially if it increases the amount of fees you can charge. You should also determine if you would need some type of state license to charge for your services. However, keep in mind that the main thing that people will want is results. What results can you help them attain? A certification doesn’t guarantee that but you being good at what you do can. So be sure that you continue to develop your skill set until you have achieved the level of mastery that helps your clients get great results.
Step 4: Offer your services for money.
Now, it’s time to make it known that you are in business. Determine what your fee is going to be and then put it out there that you offer a service or a product. You can share it through word of mouth; you can put it out through social media outlets; create a website; attend networking events, etc. The main thing is to share the benefits that someone could expect from taking advantage of what you offer. If anyone has already achieved some result from working with you or would testify that you do great work; that would help your sales initially. However, when starting out, you may need to charge lower fees so that you can attract business. Once you are established and are sure about the results you offer, you can begin raising your prices.
These are the first 4 steps to becoming a moonlighting entrepreneur and can be put into practice by virtually anyone who has a talent to offer (you). There will be more work to do but this will help you get started. Some possible ideas to start with are: photography, hairstylist, make-up artist, dorm or apartment decorating, personal training, tutoring, weight loss coaching and the list goes on.
Drop me a line and let me know your entrepreneurial ideas. I would be happy to assist you in bringing them into reality.
Just let me know how I can serve you.
If you know of any college students or anyone who can use some extra funds, please share this post by clicking one of the social media icons below.