yet have less and less time to process it. That’s why every small business needs a brand—a fundamental message or impression about its products or services that punches through the clutter and anchors itself in the customer’s memory.
When SCORE 87 Flagler & Volusia began, Bonanza ruled the television ratings, Frank Sinatra owned the radio waves with "Strangers in the Night,” America was pushing for the return of her troops from Vietnam and college head coach Steve Spurrier was the Heisman Trophy winner. That year was 1965.
For any small business to succeed, achieving product/market fit is among the most important goals. But verifying that your product meets a strong market need and can stand up to competitors is not an exact science, nor does it typically happen in one grand a-ha moment. Likewise, building momentum in a market requires patience and comes with no guarantees as customers’ needs, regulatory landscapes, and competitive pressures change over time.
Running a successful business centered on doing something you love is the dream of many entrepreneurs. What could be more gratifying than making a living sharing your talents and skills with others?
It’s not difficult to find success stories about everyday people—from photographers to interior designers to carpenters and others—who have turned hobbies and interests they were passionate about into viable businesses.
Our experience has shown that leisure-based founders, those that can focus exclusively on the soon-to-be business are more likely than others to generate revenue, achieve a profit and have a deep commitment to their business. That is encouraging if you’re contemplating making the transition from hobbyist to small business owner. It’s important to know, however, that not all hobbies (and the people participating in them) may be well suited for entrepreneurship. Here are some essential points to consider as you explore the feasibility of your hobby becoming a sustainable business:
We suggest you take the following actions as you assess the viability of your hobby becoming a business that supports you and your family:
Once you complete your research and have the answers to those basic questions you’ll be ready to start drafting a business plan. A written plan is important because it helps identify the time, energy, and money necessary to take your hobby to another level.
If you need assistance in determining if you and your hobby are suited for small business, there are resources out there to help you. Consider taking advantage of the free mentoring services provided by our local SCORE Chapter. For more information on our mentoring and workshop programs call our office at 386-255-6889.
Did you know that by 2015, millennials will have spent $2.45 trillion. By 2018, they’ll spend more than the much coveted baby boomer generation shelling out more than $3.4 trillion. Each day, more than 10,000 people turn 21.
Determine whether your idea is really a good business plan.
What problem does it solve? "Be very honest with yourself in the business idea you come up with," Williams says. If your passion doesn't translate into a viable business, maybe you're better off pursuing it as a hobby or volunteer.
Customer service is one of the most important ways a small business can distinguish itself from competitors. You have the unique opportunity to connect directly with your customers, furnish the products or services that meet their needs, help them with problems, and follow up after the sale. This generates more than just sales; it also creates relationships that will not only keep those customers coming back, but also lead to referrals and new business