Archive for February, 2012

Turning Hobbies into Dollars

Feb 13 2012 Published by under Uncategorized

As long as you’re doing something you love, money doesn’t matter (that’s what they say). Why not do something you love AND get paid? It’s the best of both worlds. When you’re deciding whether to quit your job or stay put, maybe the key is to start a small business based on your hobby and see where it takes you. Who knows- your hobby could turn into financial success. First, let’s start small and explore some options for turning your hobbies into dollars.

What hobbies do you have that could render a sellable product or service? It’s best to choose just one to start with; delving into too many new endeavors leads to an unfocused effort. When deciding on which of your hobbies you will use to bring in income, think of what is the most marketable with the least amount of work. If your hobby is too difficult to launch, you may lose interest early in the process. Think outside of the box. If you enjoy scrapbooking, you could teach others to scrapbook, host parties, or even make handmade cards to sell online. If you enjoy collecting antiques, you could buy antiques at estate sales, refurbish them, and resell to others. Do you love to write? Explore writing for magazines or newspapers in your spare time.

How will you get the word out? Marketing your product or service is so easy with the internet. There are many websites already established that allow you to sell your product for a small percentage of your sales. If you make handmade arts, crafts, or jewelry, try Etsy (www.etsy.com). You can start a personalized storefront with your homemade products and also buy materials at bulk prices to help keep your costs low. If you have collectibles, sell them on eBay (www.ebay.com). If you would like to offer a local service, like car restoration or reupholstering, advertise your services on Craigslist (www.craigslist.org) or Oodle (www.oodle.com). Another option is to start your own website, which will cost a little more, but allow you more control of your product or service. There are companies that offer low-cost websites with easy-to-use design options, like Homestead (www.homestead.com). Once you have your website and storefront(s) ready to go, be sure to start social networking specifically for your money-making hobby, especially Facebook (www.facebook.com) and Twitter (www.twitter.com).

How will you run your new side business? First, you should check with your local Small Business Development Center (www.sba.gov) to make sure you are following all the rules and learn how to handle things like taxes and contracts. Even though you may do just a little photography on the side, you still need to protect yourself and everything you have worked hard for. Take pride in your hobby and treat your customers just like any other business would. Good word travels fast, but bad reviews travel even faster. If you decide to sell a product online, reviews are easily accessible to potential customers and the lifeblood of future business.

The most important thing is to enjoy what you are doing, otherwise you’re hobby may become a chore. Once you get things going, contact us at QuitorNot.com and let us know how things turn out!

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