What is a Creative Business?

Can creativity be trained? Is it possible to read enough, learn enough, and practice enough to be magically creative? Or is it likely a talent reserved to those lucky few witty and creatively-induced enough to add that all-encompassing dynamic to art and business? Surely, creativity is a talent. And surely, you can train yourself to be more talented. But like nature vs. nurture, it is fascinating to explore the influences of each cause on the methodology of people. So in the never-ending debate of creativity, we explore what justifies a creative business, and how you can take a solid idea to an unrivaled and exploratory creative peak.

It took one paragraph to mention the phrase “out of the box.” It is a common phrase that is associated with creativity, but amounts to very little. Not only is it grossly overused and rarely actually results in what people consider “out of the box” thinking, but it is ill-conceived. What is wrong with being inside the box? The box is nice, comfy, and enlightening. If you are outside the box, you are wandering aimlessly in another place entirely.

Theoretically, it does represent what many consider creativity. But perhaps it is so overused that being inside the box is what is actually creative. Despite the specifics of the term, a creative business is affronted by unique ideas and concepts that, by its very nature, excels because it is different. Creativity can be overused itself. Finding a balance between what is formulaic and serviceable and what is unique and different is at the crux of being creative. Businesses may extend their creativity too far, and perhaps build a basis around something too odd and contrary to what is popular to succeed. Yet, being too formulaic may position you right in an oversaturated market with too much competition and too few profits.

In a product sales business, study the product life cycle to position your creativity effectively. A creative business succeeds by being in the right place at the right time. Truly innovative ideas can easily be overlooked by the mainstream, because they are accustomed to what is proven to work, and marketed as such. Being creative, being truly innovative, starts you off in an odd position. How do you market something that is truly creative and new? This is why balancing out creativity with practicality and a quality marketing plan is essential.

Creativity has four steps:

  • Input: Every creative process has a foundation. Start the creative process by inputting an idea. This allows the rest of the steps to take shape around a big concept. It does not need to be wholly unique itself, but any business needs that beginning input to drive the rest of the process.
  • Blend: A big idea is nothing more than just a simple idea if it is not blended. Take your idea, and mix it with all sorts of other influences. How can it be marketed? How can it be improved? How can it be merged with other ideas? A big idea needs to be worked and reworked, and the most effective way to do so is by blending it with other influences. This is your brainstorming session.
  • Tickle: After taking a great idea, and blending it with all other influences and smaller ideas, you may have the formation of a solid concept. But the business needs to be refined. Focus your idea to a realistic scale. This involves “tickling” the idea. Set realistic goals and practical motions to accomplishing the idea. Give it a refined focus that can bring you into the future. Grandiose ideas are great, but they need to be tickled into a smaller more manageable scale. Refine the idea enough so it can be held in the hand, and break it apart so your brain can properly process it all.
  • Output: Your output is as simple as it sounds. Take your finalized idea (that should not be well developed, and begin making plans to act on it. Your output is the deconstruction of your idea into reality. Your output is the one sentence that symbolizes your whole idea, and sums up the business.

Everyone is creative. But sometimes, they need to practice their creativity. By moving through the steps appropriately, you can begin to construct a business that has longevity and uniqueness. Nearly every business has been formulated, on nearly every possible expanse of ideas. There is very little that is truly unique. Consider that as you take in influences from your major idols in life, and gain knowledge in a variety of arenas.

If you are creatively inclined, always consider building your business around this very concept! There are many people itching to find creative individuals to either freelance or hire for their team. Creativity is a powerful tool. As you harness it, refine it, and build a business around it, be aware of the very power available in being creatively-inclined, and prosper into the future with all possibilities wide open.

Personal Services – A Business For Under $100

Personal Services businessUniqueness is a nice attribute to market. As millions of people try to coexist peacefully, and all try to succeed in their own ways, being unique is becoming harder and harder. Sure, everyone is unique. But in a business sense, this does not hold all that much weight. Being unique is a marketable aspect of oneself that can cause prosperity and financial comfort. For many businesses and demands, uniqueness is required. Without being unique, you may have no value. Without being unique, the competition will crush you.

If you have a unique aspect about yourself, consider turning that into a profitable venture. The business of personal services is highly touted and regarded. The arts are widely considered personal services because of the sheer variety in delivery. The talent aspect comes into play as well, as you deliver art in many forms as a highly qualified personal service. These artistic qualities are very individualistic. As well with art, people can become truly affected and attached to a specific creator. Trent Reznor, front man of Nine Inch Nails and industrial music producer, has a very specific artistic sound. His most recent output has involved his signature style and sound for designing soundtracks. One such soundtrack for the Facebook-infused 2010 movie the Social network won awards and was considered a phenomenal piece of art. His personal service was unique to him, as, ideally, no one would be able to deliver the type of artistic service (a soundtrack) as Reznor, in his signature style. His business was in writing this soundtrack, and it was a personal service providing.

But you do not need to be a mega-popular producer to follow this trend. If you manage to provide a unique service in any medium, you will be highly touted. If you gain a following and a great track record, you will be monumentally successful. Many musicians return to the same designers for each of their album covers, as their signature artistic style molds beautifully with the vision the group has. This exclusivity and signature stylistic choice allows the artist to find a niche and charge appropriately premium prices.

A personal service business industry is extremely lucrative if you find a niche and can deliver quality. Notably, a personal service is a very individual delivery. You are hired because you supply a product or service that not many others can do. This “uniqueness” makes you special, and regarded with careful alarm. You are able to charge exclusively high amounts because of the likely peculiar service you provide.

Keep in mind, you may not be offering a unique service in itself. For example, massaging is a personal service almost strictly exclusive for licensed massage therapists. Yes, massaging is a personal service. But we are discussing with the theme of “uniqueness” is less about fitting a normal statute, but expanding into more peculiar states of uniqueness. An example could be, say, massaging only using your feet. Perhaps you can massage with your feet with impeccable skill. This delivery is personal, it is unique, and it is fascinating. If you deliver appropriately, you charge appropriately. This example seems bizarre but it represents how bizarre personal services can get. Of course, it is suggested you stay within the legal limits. But with that, feel free to use any uniqueness and specialization to your advantage to succeed on a notoriously niche level. Too niche, you may have no customers. But there is almost nothing too niche in the world of business. Carefully supplant your skill set with something uniquely you.

Starting a personal service business is all about finding the specific service you can provide. Touching on artistic qualities help, but there may be something else in your repertoire. If you lack a signature styling, this business is simply not one to venture into. The idea is to market a very specific attribute to hopefully gain a larger following and critical respect. Below are just a few mediums you can explore the creation of a personal service, from very vague to comically specific:

  • Amusement park design
  • Writing
  • Inventing
  • Graphic design
  • Church chapel painting
  • Marketing
  • Creative Brainstorming
  • Woodcarving

Personal services are a practical and individual business venture. Starting by building a team is not an apt way to go about marketing yourself. Find a niche service that you can provide, and begin by using social media to explore marketing. If your skills are talented and appealing, customers will come to you. Use popular video website YouTube to showcase your talents and hopefully garner a fan base. Approach this business with a unique and fresh perspective. Many of your practical business principles may not apply to a business that is individualistic and based on raw talent. By exploring social media, you can obtain an audience that may resort to being customers. Many artists use Photobucket to showcase their artwork. Many individuals use YouTube as a means to radiate their creative outpouring, and hopefully gain a base of fascinated customers.

You are not restricted by a local following if the service you provide is virtual. But personal services are a vast and exploratory adventure into the very recesses of human desire. Using art and appeal, you can craft a formidable following for yourself. The typical small business construct may not apply. Reach for the sky with a service that is uniquely you, and uniquely satisfying. Many individuals have found massive success through providing a service they feel passionate towards. Explore your artistic side as a veritable business venture.

How to Start a House Sitting Business for Under $100

House Sitting BusinessThere are many types of sitting. Some prefer the act of babysitting, of course, having an invested emotional interest in babies (not so much changing diapers I am sure). Others adore pets enough to take care of them, acting as a pet sitter for those owners who take extended trips away. Gaining in popularity and demand is house sitting. In its simplest form, it is the act of watching a house. Just because they do not breathe, they still need to be watched as any of the more animate sitting jobs.

House sitting entails that an individual oversee the responsibilities of a home. This could include situations very specific to that home, or vague varying on the agreements between owner and house sitter.

  • Pool maintenance
  • Lawn mowing
  • General Security

House sitting may also incorporate pet sitting as well. The idea is that as an owner leaves for an extended period of time, the home is being watched by a trustworthy individual. On more specific terms, insurance companies void claims if a homeowner is away from their home for long periods of time. A house sitter, accompanied by legal paperwork, can prove there was someone watching the home as the homeowner was vacant. House sitters are becoming more prevalent with crime rates rising; stingier insurance practices, and jobs becoming further away. With accessible cross-country travel such as a business trip, a trustworthy and consistent house sitter may be a requirement for those who go on extended trips away from their home.

Some house sitters can stay on the property for a long period of time. Like Stephen King’s novel The Shining, a house sitter resides on the property as if living there, and he is expected to maintain the property (except without the ghosts). And like that novel, the property does not need to be a house, but farmland, hotels, and business properties may apply. As the house sitter stays, he or she may be paid up front. But there are agreements where a house sitter is paid in “living.” This way, the owner does not pay the house sitter directly, but does so by providing shelter, electricity, and other miscellaneous bills procured through living at the property. The specific terms of the agreement are between the owner and the house sitter. They may involve a steady rate or a rate that increases as time goes on or new unexpected home issues arise. A house sitter may also visit the property often without actually living on the property.

Finding a trustworthy house sitter is at the very core of what makes a house sitter valuable. With access to an individual’s home, you ultimately have access to their most private affairs. Homeowners do not take this likely. As they find a proper house sitter, there number one priority is finding an individual they trust. This is why many turn to family and friends to house sit. Consider this your competition, a competition you cannot compete with.

House sitting is an accessible job. There are no required licenses and no real skills necessary to commit to the job properly. The barrier of entry for house sitting is almost uniformly low, and this causes a lot of untrustworthy individuals to enter into the field. The easier it is to get in, the more poor performers are in the field. Trust is, in many ways, your greatest asset. Because house sitting does not require raw skills to be effective, nor does it take innovative strategies to accomplish successfully, trust becomes your truest to divide you from the competition. As you venture into house sitting part term, and perhaps even fulltime, always be aware of the other individuals and what they bring to the table- because if you look at the big picture, it is the trust factor that makes all the difference.

Owners often supplant trust with official terms of agreement. The terms highlight that, indeed, this person does have access to the home. Other than specific dates and hours the individual is allowed to be in the home, it will likely highlight what specific tasks are to be accomplished and upheld.

Many individuals allow one to housesit without these specific terms and agreements. This is not a way to do business! If you settle into a verbal agreement to housesit, this more informal approach can have awful consequences. It is not unheard of that an owner or house sitter becomes legally responsible for something unexpected because the terms were never formally pronounced. For example, if the house was to burn down during an away, the insurance company may revoke any claims. As well, if a house sitter is seen residing in a house, he may be arrested for breaking and entering!

Formal paperwork is the only way to protect you in a situation, and it also reflects a certain responsibility and seriousness that can reaffirm that you are a professional and not house sitting for “a few extra dollars.” This professionalism will work in your favor, as well as attribute trust, as you expand your business.

Market yourself locally, as it is only a local audience that you can reach. Building a website is recommended for most businesses, but may be a bit excessive here. Try by reaching out to second-tier friends and family. These are individuals who you are familiar with, but do not interact with regularly. You can tell these individuals that you are looking to expand into house sitting, and consider yourself a valuable and trustworthy option. Craigslist may also be a noteworthy place, but consider that many do not trust a stranger from the Internet to have access to their home. Always leave open the option to meet and greet the homeowners before affirming terms. Skype allows for webcam communication for free. By using Skype, you can virtually meet any potential customer. Even further, you can promise consistent Skype interactions during their time away. This is to build trust and possibly be the deciding factor in choosing you over a competitor.

Make yourself as transparent as reasonable as you seek to find customers. They want to trust you, but you have to show you can deliver. Use Skype as a means to lower a communication barrier, and insist on filing the proper paperwork to protect you and build a level of professionalism. If you are a charismatic and trustworthy individual, who follows these basic mechanics, you are bound to have some level of success house sitting no matter the region.

Graffiti removal & Abatement – a Great Business Under $100

In urban areas, the “art” of graffiti is often hotly debated and polarizing. Some fall on the opinion that graffiti is harmless and small portions, and rarely leads to anything worse. Graffiti is, by its very nature, a crime. Others believe that this ill-cited act is a troublesome pathway to greater crime, and devalues a city’s overall appeal and personality. Malcolm Gladwell’s uses graffiti as an example citing the occurrence of “social” tipping in his novel “the Tipping Point.” Graffiti is messy and a relatively low-key example of minor crimes. Yet, if left unpunished and further exploited, it can severely damage the image of a city. In all actuality, graffiti leads to lower home prices and a damaged image. With studied positive correlations between crime rates and graffiti quantity, there is an established need for graffiti removal and alleviation in modern day urban areas.

Before understanding the marketing aspects, you should have a considerable grasp of the practical elements of graffiti removal. Many use paint to paint over the graffiti. This is a tedious and relatively temporary fixture for graffiti. Paint is only really effective on smooth surfaces. Otherwise it is largely ineffective. With the fact that multiple painting over cause peeling and that a paint over can leave for a large patchwork that often looks just as intrusive as the graffiti itself, painting over is a poor choice for fix. But it is also the cheapest. If you want to run a successful graffiti removal business, the cheapest option may not work for very long.

You may also consider the method of chemical removing. This way, the actual removal of the graffiti is more effective. Unfortunately, chemical removal may cause damage to the surface itself due to its abrasive nature. Considering that it is environmentally unfriendly, chemical removers may have ramifications beside a messed up wall. The environmentally conscious are finding ways to make this method no more.

In more populated areas, graffiti removal is flourishing. The main issue is the means of obtaining an individual who does the service. The potential “customers” are really only one singular force- the state. It will be the local government that will do any of the hiring for this service. With that said, entering into the field is extremely difficult. The local government usually has instilled a graffiti removal service of their own. If graffiti removal is in demand, they have a means to procure that service. Breaking into the field effectively will require you to remove the individuals who are already doing the service for the local government. The government has little reason to fire and hire a new company to do the task. They may already have an in-house company who does the removal. The fact of the matter is there is only really one customer who desires this service. Most major cities have a hotline in place for individuals to call if they see new graffiti. This allows the state to deploy their local graffiti removal company of choice quick and with little consequence. With these networks established, breaking into the field may be downright impossible.

By approaching graffiti removal, you take on a culturally responsible task. And though it is reasonable to assume that finding areas to purge of graffiti is easy, finding work is harder. Succeed by building relationships with state and local governments. If you deliver quality, and consistent work, they may consider using you as an on-duty source for graffiti removal. Removing graffiti takes the skill of any man or woman with a paintbrush and some paint. But accomplishing the task with quality entails a little more than this. If you can properly remove graffiti through something beyond the bare minimum, you may have a chance of being successful. This incorporates some sort of innovation. With a new or almost new graffiti removal technology, you can succeed where competitors fail with their dated methods.

Obtaining a team of graffiti removers allows you to be in a position to not remove the graffiti manually. With a quality team, you can remove more graffiti in quicker quantities. This also allows you to be more in demand, as the team effort makes you more valuable for a government source that may need your services.

There are other approaches to the field. Using compiling methods, you can statistically obtain data about graffiti in the region. This data could validate your entrance into the graffiti removal field. For example, if you were to obtain data about where graffiti was most often committed, beyond “in the city,” you could offer this information for the state. The information could be used to deter graffiti with more focus, perhaps by placing attention into key areas. It could act as a proactive way to lower graffiti in the area. In exchange, it could act as a way to justify them hiring you. Statistics are hard to measure and take time, but if earning entrance into graffiti removal through means using statistics, it may be worth exploring further.

In truth, graffiti removal takes very focused and specific measures to succeed. Undeniably, graffiti will always be prevalent in urban areas. But the established means of ridding of graffiti is ingrained into a subculture of legislative organization. Graffiti removal is a fascinating task to uptake, but being innovative and intriguing with your approach is a demanding, but wholly satisfying task.

Starting a Virtual Assistant Business for Under $100

The Internet is mighty. With its massive seas, you can harness the potential of almost all information. You can swim the seas of social interaction, and expand into the horizons of opportunity. The Internet has created business opportunities, and destroyed others. The power of its influence is still shaking the landscape of modern culture and business. This magnitude may be excessive and preachy, but the Internet allows you the opportunity to do a whole lot of something from a chair and a computer.

Being a virtual assistant encompasses many aspects of business. Virtual assistants typically offer services at a remote location, mostly through the computer. If a business oriented needs help from others, they may resort to virtual assistants. Below are some of the tasks virtual assistants are most often employed with:

  • writing projects
  • answering phone calls
  • customer service
  • Web design
  • Online Marketing
  • Technical support
  • Live Financial assistance

As noted above, virtual assistants exist to help those who have too much on their plate. Many need marketing plans put forward, and will hire a virtual assistant to help. Others need a few websites designed, and typical freelance work done from a single source they can trust- a virtual assistant. With customer service and phone support options offered by many businesses, they may have the virtual assistant answer phone calls and support them in these endeavors. With the power of the Internet and remote communication through Skype and Aim, virtual assisting options balloon to many mediums.

Fortunately or unfortunately for aspiring virtual assistants, the demand is booming for interesting reasons. Many turn to virtual assistants to save on costs. A business owner may seek a virtual assistant because it is cheaper than employing an individual. With employment, they need to provide steady pay, as well as benefits and other such extremities which can be offset by hiring a virtual assistant. As well, a virtual assistant has their own hub and office, and their own residence. Employing someone personally means providing space for them to work, and the items they need. Virtual assistants may not be as loyal, on paper, but they provide an often cheaper service. A quality virtual assistance is getting smart to this, so rates and prices for hiring one are known to fluctuate through all ranges of price points.

Virtual assistants work from home, showcase a wide variety of talents, and are notoriously busy, often working with multiple individuals at once through a wide collection to tasks and demands. But for those who are intrigued by these attributes, being a virtual assistant offers a wide spectrum of possibility. Succeeding is about knowing your place in the field and keeping your focus. Begin by establishing an expertise. Do not go around on social media sites imposing yourself in every medium you can barely flounder in. find focus by noting your strengths, and keeping to those sentiments. As you a virtual assistant, you may have impeccable customer service skills. You may even have honed this skill for years as a telemarketer. The point bearing here that you have found strength, and will market that strength. You may choose to offer another service or two, but keep focus on what you know best. It allows your marketing to find an established path, and will not confuse your possible demographics. Also, juggling too many objectives at once may be too deterring early on. You may break into other services as you progress, but keep yourself contained appropriately.

Once you focus, it is standard to outline some goals for the future. With a virtual assistant business, you can upstart it at a relatively low cost. With access to a computer, you find yourself single-handedly acquiring most of the basics. Much software necessary to succeed in the field is available free, or at a low cost. Invariably, you can always offer services that are exclusively viable through what software you have. Without a quality phone hook-up, you may find customer service a service you cannot offer. Graphic design may not be a service you want to offer if your software, such as Photoshop, is inaccessible. This leads from the idea of finding your strength, something conducive to your intellectual as well as literal ability to provide.

Your marketing needs notable focus. By defining the services you will provide, you can target your market to those demographics. Social media will only allow you to get so far, as it is more a way to stay connected with customers in a distanced way, than acquiring customers. You may want to join an official network. These networks bring like-minded individuals together to bounce ideas and inevitably, build customer bases. By networking with effective groups, you may find yourself gaining knowledge, advice, and overall a direction as you progress your small business to a big one. You may also want to consider giving seminars or attending workshops. Both are ways to meet possible clients and possible educators. Your word of mouth possibilities will only exist if you make a presence in the large wide world of the social network. This is not Face Book, but actually meeting people face-to-face, and interacting.

Virtual assisting is not limited to a local audience like many businesses. You can seemingly gather clients from across the globe, and still hold a healthy and sustainable business. Use that to your strength and focus outward. A customer across the country is almost as valuable as one across the street. Sure, closeness brings an ability to convene in person periodically, but with Skype and webcam chatting available, there is little excuse to not talk to a potential client often. It will allow you to sustain a trustworthy relationship, while also being transparent.

Being a virtual assistant is difficult in that you often have to juggle many tasks. Despite your strength, a client may ask you to do something you are not specifically inclined to do. This is common, and should be managed appropriately. Being a virtual assistant entails unrivaled self motivation, and an ability to know who you are and what you can accomplish. There are many paths to take the business that are only limited by the desires of people and the virtual nature of the business. But where you see one option, others may surface. Virtual assisting is highly rewarding, allows impeccable freedom, and rich limits above and beyond a salary. But finding your niche and marketing effectively will become notable barriers- once trotting through these natural barriers of entry, the sky is yours.

Dry Cleaning Pickup & Delivery Business Under 100 Dollars

In the local business battlefield, dry-cleaning acts as a notable inclusion into the canon. Many individual seeks success on rather wide-scales in dry-cleaning pickup and delivery. Of course, this should not be a surprise. Days get busier, everyone typically owns some sort of clothing, and we like our clothing to be cleaned (and picked up and delivered). So with all these aspects in due consideration, dry-cleaning may be just the business for you.

Dry-cleaning involves cleaning clothes, and the pickup and delivery portions include just that. There are many that are physically incapable of leaving their home, or some who do not own a washing machine or dryer. On other terms, some simply strongly dislike cleaning clothes, and are willing to hire an individual who will do the task for them at another location entirely. These are your target demographics. Anyone outside of this is simply not suitable to your business services.

The business, in its structure, is suitable to a local audience. It entails physically picking up the laundry as well as delivering it, clean and smelling like new. There are many aspects of a dry-cleaning business that may be initially overlooked, and will help to break ground to success in the field.

Dry-cleaning must have a local focus, as you do not expect to fly laundry across the country for delivery and pickup. With this local mindset, you should market the business as such. Distribute flyers to vehicles or outside mailboxes. Keep in mind that for most regions, you are not allowed to actually put objects in a mailbox. But you may place a flyer or promotional tool on the outside of a mailbox, as well as at the front door, if you choose to do so. Many areas reprimand solicitors, so be cautious of this in your local marketing activities.

Yet, flyers are a powerful marketing tool, and if used effectively, can help promote your business quickly and effectively. As a dry-cleaning business is almost strictly local, at least early on, your marketing will almost always employ these physical promotional habits. An accompanying website is always useful, as is social media advertising. But do not rely extensively on these methods. It is the local field that is your ground to promote with effectiveness.

With that said, your local marketing focus should not be random and ill-conceived. Use intelligence when promoting. Many apartment complexes do not have laundry rooms inside. They often share group laundry rooms. This is a nuisance. This also makes those particular individuals more apt to be a customer. College campuses are notoriously inconvenient with their laundry rooms. You may want to market where a washing machine and dryer is not a household staple. With college dormitories and apartment complexes, you maximize your potential in reaching a considerable customer base.

Always consider marketing to businesses. More often than not, they will have greater quantity of laundry, and more consistent business. Many businesses do not want to do this service themselves. You may be offering quite a convenience to a business that requires steadfast quantities of laundry. The cost of hiring your dry-cleaning business may be worth the cost of them going to a remote location for their laundry services. A restaurant may need work uniforms cleaned consistently. If you apply yourself, you may be just that business.

Local marketing often relies on coupons and discounts. Customers appreciate this extension of your services. It can be a seemingly easy and costless method in obtaining new customers. The psychology of the coupon is also fascinating. Many individuals would not have been interested if it was not for that coupon to persuade them. Always consider marketing coupons and discounts into your flyers and paraphernalia. This can be a cheap method in obtaining a customer base relatively quick.

As you pickup and deliver laundry for a customer, make sure your car is fit for the job. Even further, make sure it is clean. No dents, no dings, no mud, nothing. A car that is picking up someone else’s laundry for cleaning should be almost comically clean itself. Never shortcut this aspect! A customer will be extremely deterred from offering you their business if you pickup their items with a poor car. Consider your image and appeal, as well as the business itself. There should be no excuse for a dirty car in a business that is all about cleanliness. If you want to lose customers quick and fail in record time, have a dirty car.

Any dry-cleaning service can offer the basics. Just like many businesses, you have to explore the confines of the business to edge out the competition. One way to do this is by offering special services. Many find issues cleaning their silk or leather apparel. Perhaps by offering special cleaning and acceptance of these material goods, you can persuade a potential customer to your business. Many may easily clean their more traditional wool and cloth items, but find cleaning leather far more difficult. With this service, equated by quality delivery, you can turn an individual notably disinterested in your business into a paying customer.

In all, it is wise to get advice from notable sources. This means networking locally, joining workshops, and making your presence known. There are many people online and off who have begun businesses similar or exactly like the one you propose. Learn from the experts to avoid not so common pitfalls, and always stay alert. The dry-cleaning business deals with customers. Never suggest that you can afford to lose many without it severely defragmenting your success.

Dry-cleaning is a notably significant local business, and will likely always retain some level of customer intrigue. As you begin, consider local marketing techniques, designing flyers that look appealing and offer discounts. Tr y to offer something “a little different” while also maintaining a credible image. Dry-cleaning is fun, and potentially lucrative. But by ignoring the basics and starting aground, you run the risk of burning out before you ever truly had a chance to begin.

How to Start a Personal Concierge Business for Under $100

Time can get the best of us. As expectations of productivity flourish, and we are exposed to more media, entertainment, and overall responsibility every day, the need for a personal concierge becomes necessary. The title “personal concierge” sounds rather fancy, and perhaps it is purposely so. Yet, concierges can assist in a variety ways, some involving high class environments, and others involve the rather mercilessly uneventful.

Some need concierges to handle the miscellaneous. This usually arises from the disorganized that would have less daily work if they were organized. A concierge could simply be hired to upkeep organization and help smooth out the process. The client has all the technical know-how and expertise, and simply needs a concierge to make the process smoother. Other needs arise from a matter of time. Some need a concierge to actually assist in tasks, often the menial or monotonous tasks that do not require much expertise and become tedious quickly. A personal concierge provides the needs of a client, and if one is comfortable doing so, they should be expected to provide accordingly. As you venture into a personal concierge business, make sure to always outline what your tasks will be. You do not want to be caught up working for an agreed upon fee, yet doing tasks far and beyond what you initially expected.

Personal concierges come in many forms. As you immediately settle what you want to do, extend that by whom you want to attract. If you are a concierge that is willing to do monotonous office tasks, perhaps establishing your business in a corporate environment is best.

Always attach your preferences to the demographic. Some despise a corporate culture, and refuse to involve themselves. Do not settle for doing something you inherently dislike. It will make your advents as a personal concierge far worse than necessary. Many concierges become very specific with their services, allowing them to clearly outline their required tasks. If you bill yourself as a concierge who will do anything, you may attract many customers. But you may find yourself working far too hard for too little pay. Individuals will take advantage of your freedom to act. Have standards and outline them specifically so you do not overwork unnecessarily.
Concierges are needed for organization or to simply save time. They may also be hired to make life easier. They are hired for personal and business use. Always understand the need for a concierge, and leave your options open as you determine what is in demand and what, simply, is not.

Being a concierge allows you a phenomenal unrivaled opportunity to venture into other business outlets. You may assist in cleaning premises and offices as these tasks become monotonous and distracting easily. You may assist in tasks of representation, such as representing an individual when doing paperwork that may be deemed overly superfluous by an individual (or tedious).

Always expect that as a personal concierge, you will not be doing desirable tasks all that often. You are being paid to do the tasks that others do not prefer. Rarely are you tasked to do something that is preferred, and when you are it is because your skills are appropriate for the task. As a beginning concierge, you must establish your skill sets for potential customers with a track record. Expect to do undesirable tasks until you build to doing something beyond that.

Of course, if you enter the world of being a personal concierge with a proven track record of delivering, this may be just the right business for you. Many individuals leave jobs of many years to be a concierge handling tasks that they were required to do in their career. Being a personal concierge is an extremely personal task, as clients often relate to you as a friend. When they trust you to do tasks, they trust you with doing them correctly, on time, and honestly. As you accumulate customers, your priority will always be completing the task with the highest respect for the customer. Even as you pick up laundry or wait in line, the task of being a concierge is one of intimate origin.

The vagueness of the personal concierge business allows for the upmost flexibility with rates. If you specialize in a very specific area, you can usually afford to charge higher rates appropriate to your specialization. On the other end of the spectrum, if you are an established name and offer many services, you can charge the appropriately higher rates for a wide range of services. As you begin, find a nice middle ground that seems reasonable to you. What would you charge? How much time is being dedicated? How hard is this task? These questions seem simple, but should be analyzed to find the most reasonable and appropriate rates. There is no formula.
Providing assistance for individuals is a very variable task. Each client acts, thinks, and simply has to different needs. Studying and researching can only get you so far. But reacting and experiencing individuals’ first-hand is the best way to prepare you for the concierge industry.

A website is an absolute requirement. The most effective way for an individual to find you is through a well designed website. Display the concierge services you provide. Ye t always try to keep your rates relatively vague. Being too specific may scare off potential customers, as well; it will allow you the room to adjust rates as appropriate. But as you begin, local customers will be the bulk of your clientele. It isn’t quite possible to travel across the country, unless the individual is willing to pay to cover your expenses. Focus your marketing on a local level, perhaps by advertising yourself in the Yellow Pages or newspaper. Though these methods are becoming obsolete in a mainstream scale, there are still individuals who harness these sources to obtain specific and less mainstream services.

Personal concierges flourish based on referrals. Use this to your advantage. Build very close relationships with the customers you require, and often times, they will refer you to an individual who may desire your services as well. If you provide quality work, an individual may find you worthy of telling their personal friends or associates. On the other hand, you may be too good and they keep you for themselves!

A personal concierge must work the system like any other. Getting into the industry is relatively simple, as technology as flattened the horizon for those interested. But finding clients is a personal testament to your skills as a marketing and communicator. Be aware that personal concierges are not picked from a hat, but often painstakingly chosen after surveying other potential concierges. Your success will ride almost solely on your ability o be appealing and likable. This may sound shallow, but it is YOU who is being marketed in this industry. An excellent track record helps, as does the services offered initially. But it is sheer likability that will allow you to excel beyond the competition. Find more information for the National Concierge Association, and market yourself locally to reach customers and build steadfast and prolonged relationships.

Manufacturer’s rep – Business Under $100

Sales drive most business. As companies try to obtain massive customer bases, they usually strive to provide a product that is appealing and in demand. In their effort to sell to people, they take different routes. Often a website flourishes with online product of many different mediums. Sometimes companies substantiate their merchandise and product sector with a quality service. It is even common to see people hold true to the roots of sales, and venture local and niche routes to obtain an audience that may still be relatively untapped. Yet, as sales evolve, these routes take different forms and change following trends. One sales methodology is direct, as manufacturers find independent sellers to sell their product based on a commission. Manufacturers can provide product to retailers, and sell at wholesale, and these will likely remain viable outlets. But it is often direct sales and the path of manufacturer representations that offers a unique perspective and even more original opportunities.

As an independent seller, or manufacturer representative, you are not paid on a salary. Starting a business in this realm is comfortable because individuals already working this industry are already more than aware of the structure. As an inspiring small business owner, consistency is not something you come to expect. Manufacturer’s reps are already blatantly aware of this attribute, and are often further motivated because of it.
To understand the manufacturing rep angle, you need to grasp the reasons for a business hiring one in the first place. The reason they are successful is because a business is not always apt to hire an entire team to assist in sales. Doing so comes at a greater cost, but it also may be excessive. A quality manufacturing rep already has the connections and established clients who are interested. For example, a business may create soap. They sell all sorts of soap varieties, and pride themselves in their soap products. They manufacture their own soap, and want to find a means to make more sales in new markets. They then begin seeking a manufacturer rep. A manufacture rep usually is selling between 5-15 products or services at any single time. The soap business now finds a rep that matches them. They look at their demographic and they look at what other products the rep is selling. The soap company may want to find a rep that is productive with areas that have lots of families, but they may not want a rep who is already selling soap from another company. The soap company provides their chosen rep with product, and the product is paid a certain percent of each product they sell.

At its core, this is the business of manufacturer representation.

Though the business example seems silly, it is a great representation of what typically occurs while working with a business as a manufacturer rep. Of course, this is all easier said than done. Tackling the industry is a momentous task. It may take years before you settle in with enough products to justify a client working with you. As a new rep, you may find yourself only dealing with flustering companies that either may have just begun their trajectory to success or may be falling down fast. As you accumulate product, always keep in mind that the product may not be available forever.

As you begin your business, don’t expect to sell to retailers. In all actuality, never expect to sell to retailers. Though logic may dictate that retailers will make up a large portion of your selling power, as they would often buy in bulk and often, this is a fallacy. Retailers are apt to order directly from manufacturers cutting out the middle man. You may have luck exploring independent retailers and small-scale or niche stores. They may be more prone to purchase your products, particularly if they are unique and generally unobtainable through a manufacturing. Be wary that retail stores are more than aware that you are getting the product from a manufacturing yourself. They may want to simply bypass you entirely, so explore this route with caution.

It is important you network yourself appropriately and be willing to cold call. Customers will not be knocking on your door begging for product. You have to be willing to find customers daily and actively, exploring demographics and localized areas for possible customers. You are likely working solely on commission. Do not be de-motivated when you are not making money, because it will take a lot of time and trail-and-error to establish your grounding as a salesman. You may have the product, but without the means to sell it, you will not be successful. This also creates a paradox. How can you practice making sales when no one wants to provide you with product because you haven’t made sales?

Businesses want to work with reps who can sell. Before you sell, you must have product. Getting over this initial disturbance is possibly the most difficult aspect of being a manufacturer rep. Try selling your own product to help hone your skills. This could be a potential branching off business is successful, and will allow you an opportunity to flex your skills with product sales.

Many direct sale companies already have concrete networks. Consider finding networks that you can learn from and potentially connect with. Be wary of pyramid schemes that are likely to devalue your business path. But finding excellent direct sales companies, and learning from them, you can take that knowledge to your own small business. You may also meet some really great people, and maybe even recruit them!
The Manufacturer’s Agents National Association is your prime source of knowledge. Take advantage of the knowledge on their website to obtain a greater basis to expand from. Use this resource to find strategies and network properly. It is an excellent place for growth and assistance in paving out your methods early on.

Manufacturer’s rep’s is one of the fastest growing sales sectors in business. As more people get tuned into the possibilities, competition rises. The hardest aspect is finding a way to sell product while simultaneously finding businesses to provide product. Once you find your niche and your style, the potential is limitless. Be self-aware enough to know if you are charismatic enough to justify this business path. It takes a special type of person to sell product. If you are that person, than find the product for you and build a fantastic business future of sales, respect, and individuality.

Want To Be A Consultant? Start The Business For Under $100

Consulting is all about helping those in need. In a social sense, perhaps it is about donating to a local charity or helping an older person cross the street. In a business sense, consulting takes on a wide collection of meanings. For those in the consulting industry, they may know exactly what needs to be done and what they specialize in. For everyone else, it can be a game of assumptions, estimates, and simple guesswork. The vagueness of consulting is to your advantage. If the very essence of consulting is helping businesses, than how exactly can you help? This is an important question, and only the first step in developing a consulting business or firm.

Consulting has a wide range of areas. In the field of writing, you can consult with business writing, such as devising memos, email content, or fully fledged reports. As businesses grow, so does their marketing standards. Consult with their marketing if you find yourself infused with additional creativity. Many larger businesses have human resource divisions, but that can often be vastly improved. Consult in HR to bring people working together and the problems of dealing with people to a minimum. Perhaps your consulting expertise lies in the press. Businesses savor quality public relations. Of course, you can always consult in design, advertising, and accounting. Each of these has their own respective strengths, and all are infinitely valuable in the business world. The very options at the table are only limited by what aspects you can add to a business and your creativity. In truth, there is no limit to a business structured around assisting businesses. Yet, a business might one some direction that is a little less specific. This makes consulting fascinating, as it is the very structure of the business that allows for so many directions.

As a consultant, you need to discover your value. But as you distinguish your strengths, assess what exactly businesses need consultants for. It is easy to say “whatever they ask me for.” But before diving too far into the consulting industry, determine what is often needed. Many businesses look for consultants to offer an objective view of a situation. Often times, associates within a business offer bias views of a scenario. A consultant can objectively assess strengths, weaknesses, pitfalls, and situational circumstances to obtain knowledge for a business. This type of internal studying can find problems inherent to a business, that only an objective outside consultant can accomplish well.

Perhaps they need consultants to come in and clean up a mess. This could be a technical issue, where a consultant uses their computer expertise to rid of an issue within a company. The mess could also be financial issues. A company may need a consultant to rid of associates, hire new associates, or simply streamline the business. These can all be handled within the business, but they may want to save time or the trouble and hire an outside consultant.

As well, a consultant could help on an intellectual level. With their certain expertise, they may enter a business only to teach employees. A business looking to go completely computer-based with their database, could teach employee’s the basic and even advanced specifics of the computer program that will do just that.

A business may be changing their landscape entirely, and needs consultants to come in and help drive the ship to a successful and bright future. Maybe their previous practices are not longer working, and they are creatively dry. By mining a quality consultant, they can obtain a new life in an organization and get out of a rut.

The power of a consultant is limitless. Some insist on specializing with very unique categories of consulting. For example, a consultant may strictly do computer teaching. The strengths of this are apparent. If they specialize in this specific area, most people who need that very specific service will go to them and not the competition. They can also become masters of that very specific service. The con to this methodology is the simple alienation of potential customers who do not need that service. Of course, a consultant company who attempts to specialize in too many different categories may find themselves spreading too thin. The perfect balance is providing a variety of consulting will reaffirming the quality of every category. There are many methods to succeed in consulting. Find what works for you, and what businesses desire as you expand your business efficiently.

There are many businesses that are difficult to start. They require excessive capital, and years of patience often unbeknownst to the amateur entrepreneur. Fortunately for consultants, the beginning investment is relatively low. And with a small budget, you can upstart your business reasonably. Work out of your home, and contact a tax official to determine your tax benefits for doing so. As well, you have the freedom to explore many avenues in consulting. Many businesses have different needs. By exploring your potential customers, you are simultaneously exploring what is in demand. But do not dive into a subcategory of consulting that does not interest you. Of course, you must supply a need that businesses want, but forfeiting your personal interest will likely result in a failed business.

A business must know what you offer. Your marketing should be very clear. The consulting industry is rather vague, encompassing many facets of all sorts of mediums. It is suggested you build a pamphlet that visually displays the services you provide. As well, a website is required. Learn about how to make a quality website and keep it updated. You may want to find a consultant yourself!

With a great website and a great physical pamphlet, you are on your way to finding customers and businesses to support your own small business. Explore the competition and offer rates that are are more than reasonable. The going strategy is to offer something that is slightly above the average cost. If 100% is the highest price available, and 0% is free, choose around 60%. You do not want to lean too cheap or you will be sought as only a cheap alternative to quality work. And the businesses will represent that mentality. Choosing something that is competitively priced without being downright “cheap” is your best bet at establishing a name in the competitive field. Also, always be aware of additional costs. As you shop or purchase, it is not uncommon that things may cost more than you anticipated. This applies to consulting. Getting a job done will likely require additional funds that you were not expecting. Make it clear to businesses that this is likely to happen, and give them an estimation that is fair and transparent.

As you accumulate businesses, you may consider expanding appropriately. Hire individuals who specialize in other aspects of consulting, ideally in ways where you are weak. This creates a more well-rounded collection of services that you can provide. If you have mastered accounting, hire an individual indirectly related to this service. Having one person do account consulting and separate hired hand do marketing may be too adverse. Grow but grow with intelligence. Offering too diverse of services can be unproductive. Of course early on, the bulk of work will be done by you. Accumulate clients by advertising online, and having a cohesive high-quality website. A poor website can severely deter businesses from working with you. It will likely make you come across as unprofessional and ill-advised. Websites are, by and large, an extension of your own business persona. A website that is informative and well structured is almost as important as the very services that you provide. Begin by gaining a following locally with small businesses in the region, and use your amazing website as an outlet to reach much larger businesses.

Many consultants make the mistake of believing they can handle the needs of a large business. For the most part, you will not work with large businesses for the beginning durations of your consulting practices. This is ok! It is unlikely you have the resources available to supply their demands, and it also allows you to practice your chops with businesses that are less consequential if a mistake occurs. Of course, you never want to make mistakes. But by providing quality work to smaller businesses, you can snowball your skill sets for the larger businesses of the future. Consulting is an absolute blast to venture in. Not only is it universally vague by design, but also becomes a rewarding testament to helping businesses of all kinds and in all places. You can design a fully functioning and successful business all around the idea of helping businesses. Do not get overwhelmed. Do not get caught up in providing everything for everyone. Consulting is about finding your place. Use the Internet as your source to learn, and be accessible as you market through tiers of people who all may want you to help make them more successful. Charge appropriate rates so businesses do not take advantage of your services, but also remain competitive as you explore consulting on any front you desire.

How About a Desktop Publishing Business For Under $100

When exploring the art of display, there is a certain art to creating and marketing that has to be understood. Many messages are ill-conceived, many documents misunderstood. Visually, you may have a barrier between you and a possible customer that will invalidate any sort of marketing accomplished. The best television commercial marketing campaign in the world will be ineffective if the commercial itself is poor. Desktop publishing takes the art of creation to a business sense. As you imagine creations in a business environment, imagine how you can creatively improve a certain idea. As you read a business document, scan over a visually-centered resume, or witness the design of a publication, recall ways you can improve the content. If you find yourself clamoring for ideas, this may not be for you. But if your judgmental nature finds improvements in all facets of business creation, desktop publishing may be a perfect path for you to explore your small business desires.

Desktop publishing is essentially creating content for a business. It revolves primarily around print and design, and the act of publishing. Now, you can take desktop publishing in other avenues, and attempt to merge mediums together for a competitive edge. This creativity is powerful. But at its core, desktop publishing encompasses print and visual displays. Examples include:

  • Directories
  • Manuals
  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
  • Websites
  • Brochures

Desktop publishing has a long history, as businesses have always found a need to display content to customers and to their own employee’s fluently and effectively. Graphic design is an offshoot of desktop publishing, as well as journalism. As you go into this business venture, be aware of all the possible services you can provide. Do you want to focus on writing and text as a way to obtain clients, or a more visually and graphic-based direction? Successful desktop publishers likely encounter, and provide, both.

Assessing your strengths is a quick way to learn if this is right for you. The medium usually entails a healthy knowledge of software involved. Know the software! As technology advances, new software becomes popularized and often ignored shortly after. As you develop your skills in the industry, always be aware of new software that can make your job easier, and your skill sets up to par. For example, Adobe offers a powerful collection of software called The Master Suite. It invokes image editing software such as Photoshop, as well as a video editing program, Adobe Premiere Pro. These are staples for desktop publishers. If you do not keep up with new versions and new software entirely, you may find yourself obsolete. It is worth noting that Adobe improves their versions of this software almost every other year, offering dramatic new updates that can change the climate of your wok entirely.

Just as importantly as understanding the software to your standard, you have to learn it to the standard of the possible clients. For example, you may find your video editing knowledge up to par. But if your client finds your skills inferior, he or she will have no problem not giving you business. Always have greater knowledge than a possible client. If the client is more knowledgeable than you, you lose almost all your value as a desktop publisher.

Design takes impeccable communicating skills. With your knowledge of the appropriate software, you will know what can be easily done and what is, well, not quite possible. Your clients do not know this. Be patient, as it will take just that to receive the details of the job. Website designers know this all too well. Understand that communication is vital, as it is often hard to convey visual details through words. Always be willing to set up diagrams, and always be willing to ask questions. It will save you valuable time as you deliver a product that is what they expected. Often times, a desktop publisher gets confident in their abilities and fails to ask enough questions. As they return the content, the client is unsatisfied. This is not what I expected,” they may say. This is a common trap for beginners. Always be willing to ask questions, and ask more. It will help you to determine the task at hand in detail and make the customer satisfied for potentially future business (and referrals).

As you build your clientele, you will hopefully earn a quality track record. Create a website, where you update examples of work. It is significant that you keep this content updated often. You do not want a past customer to return to your site seeing that you have the same samples as before. As well, it is important to keep your website updated often. It will help to keep you focused, as well as the nice side affected of being listed properly on Google (websites that go unedited for long stretches of time are not listed as well or as high). Your best friend will undoubtedly be your track record. Keep your past accomplishments in desktop publishing as exposed and transparent as possible. Be wary of thieves who steal content, but also make you accessible. Your track record will stand as the majority of your marketing, as customers will see your previous work and hire you based on it.

Desktop publishing is a formidable business. Entering it means you have access to software. The higher quality software can range in the thousands of dollars, but there is free software available for those just entering and needing the basic functionalities of the business. A quick online search should run you quality programs. Windows movie Maker excels for video editing, and naturally, Microsoft Word comes with a plethora of quality options. Many programs allow patches of content. For Word, it may be advisable to download additional patches for customizing, such as fonts or colors.

As well, a lot of software is available for free on a trial basis, often thirty days. Explore your options and learn the programs before you ever make a purchase. Download the trial versions right before an important client, to maximize the use of your trial run.

Desktop publishing is an accessible industry. As the Internet grows and technology advances, the barrier-of-entry is further lowered. Yet keep in mind, the same is for your competition. Anyone can download a program and watch a YouTube tutorial. Make sure your skills are good enough to beat the competition strictly out of knowledge. Desktop publishing is a fascinating field. Be keen of competitors and of the software available to you. It is easier than ever to be successful if you have the proper knowledge and the proper ability to network and promote yourself. Many will hire you based on your enthusiasm and track record. Keep both of these transparent as you find customers and build that base for future growth.