Like most individuals looking for supplemental income, I search popular sites like YouYube, Etsy, and Pinterest to see what kind of small business opportunities exist and could get me some extra money.
The problem: I am finding that people on YouYube post how to boss up, be your own boss, own your own business owner – BUT their timelines and their sales are misleading.
- There was a person on YouYube [I will not say names], but they talked about how they got their business started, shared the items they purchased, and how you should do it too. I was getting hyped, and when I saw a more recent video from them where the person stating how they “failed” 4 months after the first three videos I saw. There is nothing wrong with failing; most people do not even try.
- The worst is when I go online, and they tell you that they quit their job a year ago, so you go to their Etsy site and see what they made less than a thousand sales between a full-year. If you do the math, assuming that they sold an item for $20 x 1 thousand purchases, you might say that $20,000. Sounds decent for a year depending on where you live, but remember that materials, shipping, Etsy fees should be deducted. The person is already telling me, the intrigued audience, that I should quit my job.
- The last example that I see on YouYube sites is financial literacy and sustainability. What I mean is that someone might be in business for a year, but their funds are not coming from “their business.” As social sites grow along with audiences that read posts, see videos, you can begin obtaining revenue through YouYube, affiliate marketing, and sponsorships. The issue I am finding when people post “this is how much I made selling [blank]” is that they bulk these financial revenues, and they should only focus on what “the business is making.” The reason I want to see that information is that not everyone will use YouYube to grow their business, so they may or may not get supplemental income to make a huge profit.
The purpose of this blog post is to utilize program management techniques before you jump into “boss mode,” and it hopes to offer non-consulting advice to people who need to hear a realistic approach.
Step #1 Identify your audience
You need to identify your audience (not I do not mean your family and friends). Small business owners only make money if their business survives, and according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, 75% of new businesses make it a year, 69% make it two years, and 50% get to five years.
Step #2 Timeline and Goals
Things like supply and demand should not be foreign for you if you are trying to become your own boss and create your business. You must know when your sales are most likely to increase and when you might dip. For example, wedding photography is likely to increase during summer because of the nice weather in California. So during off-peak season, I take portraits of people, their kids, even engagement photos. Besides knowing what months you can expect to have more money, you must have a timeline that projects where you will be in 5 months to a year, what year two will look like, and what other products you will offer if you want to be successful. Project managers will look at this as phases. During the timeline and goals, you should be projecting the minimum you can earn with your business, how you will grow, what sites you need. All this together should tell you how much you are to spend and how much much you can get back as a minimum.
A tip I would advise is to create a blog, a social media account, and post things related to your business idea to get people to follow you and start a base. This allows you to build and find the audience to have people who might be interested right away when you launch your items. When you start selling, it will take time for people to read your post, feel you out, and buy your product.
Step #3: Delivery
In short, I am talking about shipping, the most expensive thing you will have on your budget sheet IF you are not careful. Many people on YouTube wrap their items in high-end packaging; they use tissue paper, wrap bubble paper as a second layer, add packing peanuts to ensure that the item does not break, and the paper cushion more. I completely understand this approach, but from a practical sense, please order items from your intended business genre and do better without investing too much in shipping supplies. I am suggesting this because many people do not charge for these additional packing services, which means your profit margins go down if you don’t factor in shipping materials as a cost.
Step #4 Give Aways and Finances
Again, it would be best to get some exposure to social media platforms. You must also know when to buy the supply, when to have things ready, how long things may take, what financial needs you have and need to survive, and more. Consider giveaways and build a platform or team up with someone to ensure you get the audience you need.
Step #5 Identify the Issues and Risks
Think of your business as a relationship. If all steps taken were attempted with your best abilities, you need to know when to throw the towel and decide if you are to start a new adventure or break it off for good. Again, there is nothing wrong with failing, as most people never try to begin with.