The biggest sticking point for most new business owners (other than figuring out a company name) is what product to actually sell. Physical product, digital product, service? Online or brick-and-motor store? For women, men, kids, teens, tweens, millennials, mid-life crisis-ers? Amazon, Etsy, eBay? Udemy or Skillshare? There’s a ton of options, no wonder why we really get stuck on this point.
It wasn’t until 2 random incidents happened, ironically within a 24 hour span, that changed the course of my own business.
I was pow-wowing on the phone with my BFF, as our conversations always end up about business. As we were talking, she said, “Why don’t you teach this stuff?” By stuff, she was referring to me babbling on about some marketing strategy I had just heard.
Then the next day, I was on one of Mike Dillard’s webinars (love him and you must follow his work), and 1 line he said in particular really struck a chord with me. “Your biggest strength needs to become your business.”
The AH-HAH moment finally arrived.
It was literally that simple. It’s as if the path to business enlightenment was now clear. Almost too easy, right?
I think when we start to look around at other businesses, see who is getting success selling which products in different industries, we start to miss the point about starting a business: making a living off of what we love and what we are already good at.
If you love software programming, don’t think that you can make a business out of knitting doggie blankets just because you saw an Etsy store killing it in that space.
If you love cooking, don’t pretend that you need to use your college degree in mathematics to start an algebra tutoring business. Go and cook, and make money from it.
If you love yoga, yet your day job is at a customer service hotline center for an automobile parts manufacturer, go to yoga teacher training before you jump out your office building’s window (please don’t do that!).
Get my point? Focus on building a business based on what you already love and have working/expert knowledge in. If you need to, do the simple STRENGTHS & WEAKNESSES exercise by folding a piece of paper in half, dedicating each column to your Strengths and Weaknesses, and see which strengths really resonate with you. Then narrow it down to your biggest strength and see how that relates to your current passions. Strengths and passions typically have an intersecting point, it’s a matter of meditating and contemplating on it until you find that perfect crossroad.
Last week, I read this other blog where the author talked about NOT going for your passion or dreams (complete buzz-kill/de-motivator if you ask me), and to instead look at what the market is asking for. Yes, we will get to that in another post about product and marketplace demand, but for now I want you to focus on what makes you happy first. After you’ve established that piece, the next part about what you’re actually going to sell becomes 100 times easier. The product is the vehicle to income, but the business itself is the path to happiness.