People like all kinds of things. Some enjoy baking or gardening. Others like painting or playing instruments. Some are into electronics and technology. Others love kids or animals.
Just because you like something doesn’t mean you are passionate about it, though. I like pizza. I sometimes make my own at home. Yet, that doesn’t mean I’m dreaming up secret recipes or that I’m about to run out and open a pizzeria.
You know you’re truly passionate about something. Thus, turning it into a money-making enterprise can pave the way to a rewarding and lucrative career opportunity. After all, who doesn’t want to invest their time and money to do what they love all day long? Who wants to be their own boss?
The problem is, not every passion lends itself well to making money. That is, at least, not without a stellar spin and a waiting market. In addition, it takes a lot more than passion to turn your big idea into a high-profit venture. There are certainly examples of passion projects working. Just look at the iPod.
A man named Steve Jobs envisioned every American upgrading to digital music. He had the design, manufacturing, promotional chops, and the financial backing. He turned the iPod into a product that consumers didn’t even know they needed. This type of success is something to aspire to, but it’s hardly typical.
What’s the happy medium? How can you turn your passion into something that pays the bills? Here are a few things to consider before you take the leap to make money from whatever you are passionate about.
Pinpoint Your Passion, and Your Drive
A good example of a passion project gone right is TOMS Shoes. As the story goes, founder Blake Mycoskie had a strong reaction to something. He saw the hardships of shoeless children on a trip to Argentina back in 2006.
He was very passionate in his desire to help this underserved population. Due to that, he decided to start a for-profit enterprise. He would sell shoes to those who could afford them. At the same time, he donated shoes to those without them on a one-to-one scale. In other words, for every pair of shoes sold, one would be donated.
It doesn’t sound like a great business model. However, Mycoskie’s had a real passion for the project. He had a drive to make a real change in the world with a self-sustaining business.
This earned him accolades, followers, and fans. His passion was infectious. His products were well-received. He was able to expand the concept to include eyewear, as well. He provides a pair of glasses to a needy person for every pair purchased from TOMS Eyewear.
Pinpointing your own passion is extremely important. Additionally, you need to figure out what will drive you to succeed. These are the first steps to turning your passion into a productive and profitable business.
Liking something is not enough. You have to love it. You must be committed, if you want to persevere it despite the many setbacks you’re likely to face.
Figure Out How to Monetize
Now you’ve determined what you’re passionate is about. Thus, it’s time to figure out how to monetize, and this means finding potential markets. Consider the extremely profitable Spanx brand of shapewear. It was launched by Sara Blakely.
She was a woman who frequently wore pantyhose. Blakely was disappointed by flaws in the traditional garment. That included the closed toe showing while wearing open-toed shoes.
She began to experiment. She cut off the feet in the ends to get the body-shaping benefits of pantyhose without the unwanted coverage. An idea was born. However, it would take the time to come to fruition.
Blakely got a patent and approached manufacturers. Yet, no one would support her idea. That was until one man said he had reconsidered. It was based on the fact that his three daughters wanted the product after hearing about it.
Today, Blakely is a billionaire. You’d be hard-pressed to find a woman who doesn’t at least recognize the brand, if not own some of her products. This illustrates how you can find a niche. It can even be in a well-established market, if you choose, to pursue your passion.
Be Realistic About Your Strengths and Weaknesses
Not everyone is a go-getter, a Richard Branson, an Elon Musk, or a Sara Blakely, for example. You don’t necessarily have to be good at everything you set your mind to. However, when starting a business, you do have to be realistic. You need to know what you can actually accomplish on your own.
It’s essential that you take the time to determine not your passion. You need to know how it can serve an unmet need in the marketplace. Additionally, you should be aware of your own strengths and weaknesses.
That is especially true when it comes to turning a profit in the business world. In the beginning, you may have no choice but to go solo. You will have to manage every aspect of your operation, at least until you can afford to hire help.
However, you need to understand areas you’re weak in. Thusly, you can at least seek expert guidance early on. Then, hire qualified professionals as your business budget allows. Get the right professionals in place to handle the tasks you can’t. In doing so, your passion project will have a much greater chance of succeeding long-term.
Start Small, but Plan for Growth
One of the first steps in turning your dream business idea into a reality is creating a business plan. This is the case even if you’re running a sole-proprietorship in the online arena.
It may be something you could potentially accomplish without even taking out a business loan. Though, a business plan provides you with a flexible roadmap to the future.
It allows you to state your goals. It determines pathways that will lead you to success. This is especially important if your idea takes off and you find your operation growing rapidly.
New businesses can take months or years to ramp up before seeing profits. Have a solid business plan in place. Thus, you can account for this delay in earnings and find ways to compensate.
However, you need to prepare for the fact that your passion project may take time to develop into a successful enterprise. Patience is an essential virtue if you want to make money from your passion.
If you have any comments about this topic or suggestions about future topics leave them in the comment box below.
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