Turning your passion project or hobby into a full-time business would be a dream come true, right?
Of course, making such dreams a reality seems much easier said than done. Yet with the explosion of full-time YouTubers and crafty entrepreneurs taking advantage of platforms such as Etsy, it’s arguably easier than ever to turn your interests into cash.
Whether you want to go full-time or run a side gig, there’s no denying the potential headaches and hurdles that you’ll encounter along the way to success. Unfortunately, many newbies are totally unaware of what to expect when they start their hobby businesses.
Struggling to get your passion project off the ground? Considering taking yourself full-time but don’t know what’s next? If you want to give yourself some peace of mind, keep the following tips in the back of your mind.
Protect Yourself from Problem and Predatory Customers
There’s nothing worse that dealing with a legal nightmare, especially when it comes to your business. Although nobody wants to fight a nasty legal battle with a customer over the Internet, it’s bound to happen the longer you stay in business if you’re selling products.
Beyond having your legalese sorted out by talking to a lawyer, investments such as PI insurance represent smart moves for savvy solopreneurs who want to have their bases covered.
Rather than sweat a potential customer complaint, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Don’t Be Afraid to Task
Many new business owners, especially artists and hobbyists, fail to see their companies grow because they haven’t mastered the art of asking. When you’re working in a creative field, you’ll always struggle until you take the leap and put yourself out there.
So, what can you ask for from your audience, fans and followers? Consider asking for…
- Shares, comments and “Likes” on your blog, social media posts and product pages
- Opportunities for financial support via platforms such as Patreon
- Features on relevant blogs or sites in your industry
At the end of the day, it’s all about being forward without people while still remaining tactful.
Be Prepared for Burnout (and How to Beat It)
Those who make money through their hobbies often find themselves facing a sense of burnout which makes them want to throw in the towel. Feelings of burnout are inevitable when you’re unable to disassociate your “job” and what you once loved to do in your spare time.
It’s important to anticipate these feelings and understand that they come in waves. By having other hobbies and adopting a more professional mindset, you can take a step back and remind yourself that you’re running a business. Remember: your livelihood isn’t all fun and games.
“Free” is Your Friend
Don’t make the mistake of blowing out your advertising budget when free platforms such as social media and blogging exist.
Sure, free advertising can only take you so far in the long-run. That said, many creative business owners make the mistake of allocating an arbitrary amount of their income to their marketing without assessing the ROI.
Instead, see how much you need to get started in terms of marketing spend and try not to spend a dime more until it’s time to scale. For example, you don’t need to pay for social ads or a pricey email automation platform if you have no list or followers yet.
Rather than be your own worst enemy when it comes to your hobby business, do everything you can to set yourself up for success. Understanding these tips inside and out will keep you from worrying when you do run into a rough patch or need to make a big business decision in the future.