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Go-to Guide on Turning a Passion Project into a Thriving Business

Go-to Guide on Turning a Passion Project into a Thriving Business

Life isn’t free and the cost of living continues to rise, bills pile up and you have to pay for everything.

For most people, this means you need a job or promotion.

Many people are happy to work for other people, exchanging their labour and skills for a steady paycheck.

There’s nothing wrong with this, as demonstrated by millions of people all over the world.

Some people find great satisfaction in their job or want to do a career where they learn by working for someone else.

Others go into their own business or start side hustles to bring in more money.

Starting your own business can be an excellent viable alternative to employment with a company.

For starters, when you own a business, you can earn much more than you can from drawing a wage, depending on how successful your business becomes.

You also get to turn your passion into a thriving business, but how exactly do you go about this?

Whether you want to become a jewellery wholesaler or run a gym, we’ll cover how you can transform a passion project into a viable business.

How to Turn Passion Projects Into A Business

1. Find Your Passion

What do you enjoy doing or could talk about for hours or would push through the hard times to be able to do?

For some people, this is making things, such as jewellery, apparel, accessories or other consumer goods.

Many people are passionate about providing services, such as building a new piece of software, building houses, or fixing broken appliances or technology.

Others are passionate about books, board games, or nutrition or other knowledge they have and want to share.

Whatever your passion is, you can transform it into a money-making machine.

Once you’ve identified your passion, it’s time for the next steps in your journey.

2. Develop a Unique Offering and Find a Place in the Market

Once you’ve figured out what you’ll be selling, either goods or services, or both, you need to work on making your product offering unique and valuable.

Ideally, you want to solve a problem for customers at a price point that makes you worth spending the money on.

What is it about your passion that stands out from the crowd?

Because you’ll be entering into a crowded marketplace, consider your point of difference or unique selling point carefully.

If you’re investing in a brick-and-mortar physical location, then thoroughly examine your site and any nearby competition.

For example, it’s not the most brilliant move to open a burger joint on a street that has two burger places already operating.

Find another piece of real estate or vary the cuisine you’re making if food is your passion.

When doing this, be sure to test the market and do thorough market research to ensure your passions and point of difference are viable.

How to Turn Passion Projects Into A Business

3. How Will You Fund Your Launch?

Starting a business costs money, and there’s no avoiding this but you can start an online business for under $100.

Depending on your business, you may need software, sometimes a physical location, IT systems and equipment, materials, and various other expenses to get started.

This means that you generally need some working capital to begin.

If you’ve got a decent nest egg tucked away, the problem is solved.

Otherwise, consider taking out a business loan or seeking a partner.

Once you have a product or service that you’re passionate about and is innovative and useful, you may wish to begin approaching venture capital firms to source seed investment funding.

Be wary of this method, though – investors can have a lot of sway when it’s their money you’re running a business on, so if you want to maintain autonomy and control of your decisions, you may want to consider bootstrapping yourself via other means until you’re successful. 

4. Write a Business Plan

What exactly is a business plan? In straightforward terms, a business plan is a written guide or a roadmap for your passion project that you’ll turn into a business.

It is typically written as a business starting while taking on the other advice in this article.

A business plan will set out some basic, achievable goals and how you might go about completing them.

For example, as you are just starting up, your first business plan might include goals such as launching your website, achieving your first ten or twenty sales, and then building up a contact list for email marketing. 

5. Understand Your Target Market

Understanding the market for your passion turned business means knowing if there is actually a need for what you are passionate about.

This means some work, such as researching your target market, analysing your competition, and measuring the overall demand for your product or service.

Market research is fundamental as it identifies the demographics of your potential customers (target market), such as their age, income level, gender, and location.

You could develop a survey, or engage a market research firm to assist with this. 

In addition to the above, you should also be across the trends and patterns in the market, as well as the price points of similar products or services.

Develop a spreadsheet or living document that tracks all this for you.

This information gathered about your target market and the existing state of affairs will help you determine whether your passion has the potential to be transformed into a profitable business and bring you success and wealth. 

Furthermore, if there are gaps in the market that you can fill with a unique product or service, you will have an opportunity to bring your unique offering to customers.

This is why some businesses become wildly successful: They solve a problem for people. If this solution didn’t exist before, you could sell what you’re passionate about, like hot cakes.

6. Consider Other Platforms

If you are making things to sell or offering specific services, you can test this on various platforms before going to the expense of building your own website.

Etsy is a global marketplace used by makers everywhere.

From game accessories to clothing, shoes, jewellery, perfume and more, if it’s handmade, you can sell it on Etsy.

This can be a great way to gauge the market interest in your products.

If things sell well, you know there is demand for your product, and you could consider launching a separate website to stock items on.

Etsy does take a certain percentage from sales, but they also offer visibility of your product, so it’s a decent trade-off. 

There are similar platforms for everything including providing services such as consulting, graphics, marketing, social media etc.

A Passionate Conclusion

Running a business can be highly rewarding but does come with risks.

Be sure to do your research, invest wisely, manage your cashflow and market it well to make the most of it.

For other tips on business, check out our business series covering everything from set-up to security.

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