Okay, I’ll admit it. I never aspired to run a large, brick and mortar business or fortune 500 company that required overhead and leading a large team of employees.
Yes, I’ve managed employees in Corporate America before but did I necessarily enjoy it? Not really.
My decision to become a solopreneur was based solely on my preference for a slower paced lifestyle and stress-free working environment.
Do you prefer to work on a large team? Do you prefer to work with others or alone? Just a few questions you may want to consider.
Some people would rather wake up everyday, complete their work from home peacefully without a long commute, the stimulation of coworkers in an office space, or bosses hovering over their shoulders.
There’s nothing wrong with this as long as you have a healthy work life balance.
Yes, we need balance even while working alone!
Is it better to start a business alone or with a partner?
Being a solopreneur can be isolating. There’s no one else to bounce ideas off of or someone to vent your frustrations to when you miss a deadline or an order doesn’t process correctly.
It’s usually you and your computer screen alone until your spouse returns from work or your children are out of school.
Believe it or not, there are a lot of people who prefer their workday this way.
I’m one of them!
What can I say? I’m introverted, I don’t like the hustle and bustle of commuting into the city and I approach life simply. I prefer to keep my business endeavors simple as well.
Creating multiple streams of income online from the comfort of my home was always the goal, but starting an online business doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t need a support system or virtual assistant (or two) to help you grow.
Let me be clear. You should aspire to grow and scale your business like any other entrepreneur.
Just make sure that you do it in a way that is both manageable and sustainable for you mentally and physically as the only player in the game.
With that said, monetize your hobbies, get rich from your passions, and live out your dreams. It’s very possible to attain success as a solopreneur alone.
How To Become A Solopreneur?
Assess your talents.
- What skills or talents come to you naturally?
- What do you enjoy doing for leisure or as a hobby?
- What valuable information or knowledge do you have to share?
Take some time to either journal or jot down a list of things you can possibly offer as a service, product, or teach as a lesson to others.
Identify a viable business.
Your side hustle or new business does not have to align with your passion. Unfortunately, many of us can’t make a sustainable living from doing what we love.
You could be great at budgeting or managing finances, but the mere thought of creating a business around it may seem daunting.
A side hustle should ideally be something you enjoy or can sustain long term without it feeling like work.
Nothing’s worse than leaving your 9 to 5 to grow a small business or work a part-time job you absolutely loathe or hate with a passion.
Your journey to becoming a solopreneur should be fun, uplifting, and gratifying.
Solopreneurs can work on their businesses from sun down to sun up, because they genuinely love what they’re doing and are dedicated to reaching their goals.
Is your side hustle something you can really dedicate your time to? Outside of your full-time job, can you work a second, eight hour shift from 7pm to 3am in the morning?
Make sure you’re thinking things through before you fully dive into your entrepreneurship journey.
Research the market.
If a market audience doesn’t already exist for the business you’re trying to start, chances are it may not be the best market to get into.
As a small business owner, it’s better to sell to an established market that’s not oversaturated. This is important.
It’s pretty hard to stand out in a crowd unless you have a genius marketing strategy, or a really unique product or service that will set your business apart from a sea of others.
It’s even more difficult to create a market audience for something nobody wants – unless your neighbors and close family members count.
Before buying supplies, searching for merchandise and vendors, or creating products, research your potential market diligently. I can’t stress this enough.
Refer back to the list you created and identify a niche that aligns with your interests but also has customers that are ready to buy.
Write a business plan.
Don’t throw crap against the wall to see if it will stick.
Start your business with a plan. Trust me, the pursuit of business ownership is no joke, large or small. You’ll be investing precious time, money, and energy into your business if you plan to be successful.
Starting out, solopreneurs tend to wear multiple hats. At times, you’re the graphic designer, creative director for your brand, marketing specialist, and the finance manager.
Solopreneurs have to create content to market their products and services; drive traffic to landing pages or websites; and funnel in potential customers to grow their email lists.
Imagine doing all of this without a plan. Can you say overwhelm overload? This doesn’t have to be your side hustle life.
Create a five year plan that includes strategies on how you plan to reach your target audience, what marketing channels you’ll use to appeal to them as the face of your brand, and the steps you’ll take to grow.
Sometimes, it all starts with just one product alone.
Sell a valuable product or service.
Ready to reel the money in? Well, products don’t sell themselves, you do.
Don’t expect to have your side hustle take off if you’re always hiding behind your brand.
What do I mean exactly?
Well, you can’t sell a book, a course, handmade item, or workbook without putting your brand’s story out there first. People purchase from brands they can trust or relate to.
Target and Walmart are two brands that essentially sell the same things. Consumers trust them and never hesitate to purchase from their retail stores because of their familiarity with them.
Although you’re running a one man show and not a large retail store chain that sells household name brands, you still have to make a name for yourself.
This comes with time and being strategic about how you can get your target audience to relate with you and your brand on a personal level.
Ask yourself the following three questions to reflect:
- What are some common struggles that you and your audience share?
- Do you have a solution to the problem?
- What products or services can you offer that will resolve them?
Build a brand.
When people think of your name, organization, or company they should automatically know how you will be of value or service to them.
Your logo, pretty script fonts, and brand colors should not be the foundation of your brand. Some small business owners don’t have any of these things, but benefit from a large following because their target audience resonates with their brand.
Relatability can stem from a myriad of things. You could simply be a mother with great style; lead a healthy lifestyle; keep a tidy home; or are very crafty and skilled with your hands.
There’s something unique about all of us that others can either relate to or learn from.
Your brand should symbolize and showcase those very things.
Grow Your Audience.
Without an audience, you don’t have a business, at least not yet.
Whether you’re starting a Youtube channel, eCommerce shop, or a blogging business, you need people to buy what you are selling.
Creating a product and writing a business plan is only half the battle. Depending on your side hustle, strategies to build your target audience will look different from others.
Instagram and Facebook are potential platforms to market products for skincare, beauty, and clothing while Pinterest and Youtube may be more suitable for someone who would like to curate an audience for their blog.
Webinars and workshops are great for people looking to sell their knowledge, such as courses, ebooks, or professional services.
Now that you have the seven steps on how to become a successful at solopreneurship it’s time to select a side hustle. Check out the 10 best side hustle ideas for 2021 and get a head start on your solopreneurship journey with The Side Hustle Planner below.
I teach entrepreneurs how to simplify their life and business with less + own their time and maximize productivity towards their personal and monetary goals.