How to Get The Most Out of Your Idea Without Starting a Business
If you are like most people, you probably have a hobby that you excel at or a special skill that could serve others well. You may be interested in sharing your skill with others and even to monetize your activity. However, you may not be interested in launching a full business. After all, maybe you don’t want to take the risk, put together a full business plan and more at the moment. There are some relatively easy steps that you can take to start profiting from your skills or interests without starting your own company.
Define your Idea
Before you can start making money by sharing your idea or skills with others, you need to define what it actually is. For example, is it a physical object, a skill or an intellectual concept? You could potentially license your inventive idea, such as the Copper Chef cookware that you may have seen featured on television commercials. You may also offer a service, such as life coaching, mentoring, copywriting and more. After you have defined your idea, you can walk through a few steps to get your idea off the ground without launching a full-fledged business.
Find Your Niche
To successfully provide your idea or product to other people, you must understand your unique niche in the marketplace. Define who may benefit from your niche, and explore strategies for getting the word out about your niche concept to the target audience that you have identified. For example, if you have a product, using Etsy or Amazon is a smart idea. If you offer a service, Patreon, Upwork, Peopleperhour or other websites could be helpful to you. If funding is needed to assist with bringing your idea to fruition, consider using crowdfunding to generate interest and capital. You may not need to have a full business plan when taking this approach, but you still need to do some research in order to achieve success from your effort.
Build Your Social Following
You do not need a huge marketing budget to spread the word about your product or service. You can easily use social media to your benefit. First, select social media platforms that would work best for you. For example, Etsy or Pinterest are a smart solution when introducing a product. Capture excellent images of your offering online to appeal to the masses, or even consider using a video to demonstrate how a product works or how beneficial a service may be. You may even offer freebies or special offers to further engage your social media followers. Social media platforms offer two-way communication with your audience. Regardless of whether you would like to monetize a product or service, use your sphere of influence and your connections on social media platforms to generate interest in what you are offering.
Make Smart Connections
As soon as your product or service gets some momentum, you can reach out to other influencers to make smart connections. Sometimes you can connect with an influencer who may serve as an ambassador for your product or service. Maybe you have some powerful friends who can spread the word to their own connections. For example, you can reach out to local business professionals who may be interested in partnering with you. You never know who can turn out to be your champion. Remember that these are free ways to generate interest in your idea.
Always respond to questions and comments so that you establish a relationship with your audience and brand yourself. While this takes time in many cases, it is very effective at producing results. Remember that others who are not actively communicating with you will read the comments posted as well, which further expands your reach.
After a while, you may decide to create a business plan and approach monetizing your skills, hobby or product idea through a full startup or launch. On the other hand, you can profit through a different approach. If launching a startup is not quite right for you, consider how you can walk through these steps to generate interest in what you have and to turn a profit from your great idea.
Heather Redding is a part time assistant manager and freelance writer based in Aurora, Illinois. She is also an avid reader and a tech enthusiast. When Heather is not working, she enjoys a good book from her Kindle library along with a hot drink.