When Your Hobby Becomes A Business
It is possible to turn ordinary activities into money-making projects. All you need is the determination to put yourself out there with the best of them. There is satisfaction in doing what you love and being paid for it. Here’s a quote by Les Brown: “Success is doing what you love to do and finding somebody to pay you to do it.”
Hobbies can be a fun way to pass the time and unwind. From early stages in our lives, we gravitate towards certain activities that align with our passions or skills. We can sum these activities up as things we are good at or things we learn from those around us. Examples include drawing, painting, dancing, sewing, writing, designing, baking, and so on. The list is endless. Everyone has at least one hobby that they have picked up from childhood; something they enjoy doing outside of their regular school or work schedule.
With the changes we experience because of shifts in global economics and technological advancements, it has become possible for hobbies to become more than just ways to pass time. With so many needs arising because we are always evolving, people use their skills and passions to fill gaps left by conventional businesses and service providers. Many use their hobbies to meet people’s needs. This not only fills the gaps mentioned, but it has also helped people turn their hobbies into profitable businesses.
There are people who found themselves unemployed because of automation. For some, it came as an effect of national and global recessions, with companies having no option but to downsize in order to stay afloat. Others found dissatisfaction in their regular nine-to-five jobs. To find alternative sources of income, they stumbled upon the idea of using their hobbies to make money. For some, the ventures turned into full careers and employment creation opportunities. For others, it put food on the table. When you research on the internet, you find many testimonials of people who are making profits out of things they consider to be hobbies.
Hannah Dale was made redundant in 2007. She was three months pregnant at the time and they had diagnosed her mother with cancer. The situation was stressful for her considering her savings were too little to support her to take care of the baby and her mother. Her hobby, watercolor painting, continued to be her way to relieve stress as she found it therapeutic. She started selling her paintings to local shops, but she was still not earning much. An idea hit her to print her designs on greeting cards and sell those instead. Ten years later, she had started her company called Wrendale Designs, with twenty employees and a substantial yearly profit, all from printing her watercolor animal and bird designs on stationery, tableware, wallpaper, and cushions.
As exciting as it can be to monetize your hobby, it is difficult to do. There is a significant risk that once you fail to make a profit, you will lose your passion for that activity you once loved. The pressure of working to a schedule and meeting financial goals and customer expectations can take away the fun, relaxation, and personal satisfaction in the activity. This, however, should not deter you from trying. After all, every business comes with a lot of risks and failure is a significant possibility.
The art of turning your hobby into a financial resource.
It is not automatic that you can make money out of your hobby. It will demand a lot of hard work, more so because you want to turn in a profit and not just do the normal activity to pass time. Commit the time to research if your hobby is marketable. Not every hobby can turn into a business. Carry out your research. You also have to risk failure. Encountering setbacks is no reason to quit trying to make money out of your hobby. It is normal to find obstacles in the journey to achieving your goals. Push through every barrier you encounter in order to see what is on the other side.
Hobbies that you can monetize.
If you are a performer, you can teach others or perform for a fee. If you are into crafts, you can create something for resale. If you are creative, you can write or draw or paint.
How to turn your hobby into a financial resource.
Do your research.
The first stage is to list your hobbies down. Which one can you turn into a business? This involves extensive market research, including people who are already in the same line of business. Find out if your competitors are lacking something and see how you can cover the gap. Find your niche. Research on how much capital it will require to turn your hobby into a business. Educate yourself further by taking a course. Do everything you can to attract attention to your business.
Come up with a plan of action.
It is never a good idea to delve into a battle without a strategy. It exposes you to failure. Create a plan for monetizing your hobby. Set goals and timelines. Get other people to help you if you must.
Do a trial run.
Take advantage of having friends and family that will give you honest feedback. Let them be your first customer base. Sell to them and record all the feedback they give. Ask for advice on areas of improvement.
Expand your reach.
Once you are in the clear, invest back into the business. Make the improvements you can to attract more customers.
The only way people will pay you for a service or a product is if they know about what you have to offer. Take advantage of social media to let people know you exist. Build an intriguing online presence. Print out posters and fliers if you must. Attend networking events. Do what you can to get your name out there.