Five Great Resources to Leverage for Your Side Business
Have you thought about starting a side business? According to a study done by Bankrate, 44 million Americans have a side hustle in addition to their full-time job to bring in extra income. Building a side business can also be a great way to get a running start into your own full-time business, which may allow you to quit that day job someday.
Another report called UPS Stores’ Inside Small Business Survey also says that 66% of Americans dream of starting their own business. People state the number one reason for not even getting started is money. Some business ideas require an up-front investment for actual product development. However, the mechanics of just getting started can be done at a relatively low cost.
Here are five great cost-effective resources that will help you get started:
Free Online Training & Podcasts
There are tons of experts in almost any industry you choose doling out free information all over the internet. Conduct a few simple Google searches to find the experts in the field you are interested in, and subscribe to their newsletters and podcasts. Become a student to learn both about becoming an entrepreneur and about the industry you want to enter. As you know, you can download a podcasting app on your Apple or Android phone to have your own training library right in your hand!
Your Local Library
This isn’t your father’s library anymore! In addition to hosting great classes for budding entrepreneurs, the library has “maker spaces” to test out invention ideas, recording studios for videos and podcasts and free meeting spaces for your company or initial customer meetings – all for free. And, of course, the books are great, too, to learn more about your desired new business.
If you haven’t discovered this gem of a website, check it out. Looking for a good company name? Need a logo? Want a voice over for your new product? Fiverr is a creative freelance marketplace for a wide array of services you may need to get you started with your business. What’s more, the fees charged tend to be really low.
Once you’ve got that idea, name, logo and website nailed down with your friends from Fiverr, getting the word out is essential. Social media is the easiest and fastest way to let people know what you’re up to with your side business.
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, oh my! If you’re not used to managing all these channels, you might start with just one and build. That said, once you begin managing multiple channels, there are websites like Hootsuite that help you consolidate, streamline and manage your messages and posts all in one place. This service and others like it are worth the investment because you will save time and make this important marketing aspect of your business much easier.
Every business needs customers. After you tap into your friends and family, you’ll need to build your network. Social media is a great place to start to connect with like-minded entrepreneurs and prospective customers; however, nothing beats face-to-face interaction. Check out www.meetup.com and try out some free networking groups in your local area. The first one or two you attend may not be the right fit, but don’t give up. Finding your “tribe” as well as a great source for new customers will happen in time!
These are just a few key resources to help you in the beginning – there are hundreds more to be sure! The key is to find something you really enjoy that also makes money while not spending a lot to get it off the ground.