It’s hard not to catch the entrepreneurial bug these days, with all the startups, investors and amazing side business ideas you see on TV and read about online.
If you think you have to be stuck in the same old career for the rest of your life, consider the fact that the average age of today’s entrepreneur is about 50 years old! If you have a little spare time, are resourceful and creative and can absorb the initial startup costs, there’s no excuse not to go for it. Here are a few side business ideas that could earn you the title of CEO.
Offering Specialty Foods Or Gourmet Desserts
There are many successful startups working out of their very own kitchens and if you’ve got the talent (and a really good recipe) you can too. Check local regulations about food preparation, licenses and other tedious details, then test your goods on a large sample of people you don’t know. Document what they say and use their words of praise as testimony to the savoriness of your creations on your website. Go out to different venues that feed people in quantities, such as caterers, churches or convention centers. Ask if you can provide a few freebies in exchange for their feedback. If you’re as good as you think you are, they will be calling you with orders in no time.
Keep in mind: Whatever business you start up, no matter how modest, you may need to scale, big!
Starting A Branding Consultant Business
If you have any expertise in advertising, marketing, product management and/or branding, the business world eagerly awaits. Becoming a branding expert requires self-promotion and little else, provided you can back up your claims of marketing wizardry. The rate of failure for small businesses is discouraging, but if you can re-brand them, repackage their products to be more appealing and show them how to get their messages to market, your phone could be ringing off the hook. Check the going rate for consultancy fees, to ensure you’re within the market norm and not selling yourself short: Saving struggling businesses should come with a very satisfying payoff, and this type of work can be managed with an existing nine-to-five as needed.
Keep in mind: Quitting your day job means losing health insurance and other securities: make sure you’re ready.
Getting A Product To Store Shelves
If you’re a tinkerer and have come up with a good idea or two, undertake an (exhaustive) patent search to see if someone else has thought of the idea first, then conduct product feasibility research. It’s one thing to think you have a marketable idea, quite another to actually have one and be able to convince others of it. Once you’re certain, get the legals out of the way and find a manufacturer, or produce the inventory yourself. Although not every great startup began in a garage or basement, many did and even more continue to emerge. If you can make something that people want to buy, find a way to introduce the product to the appropriate audience. Although a lot of work, time and sweat may be involved, this is one of the most rewarding side business ideas to pursue.
Keep in mind: It’s never as glamorous as it is on the reality shows, so prepare to be discouraged and even lonely.
Being a CEO is exciting, even if you’re not making the Forbes 500 list. It gives you the opportunity to explore passion, be independent and even earn a decent amount of money (eventually). In all likelihood, the biggest obstacle you may be facing is your own self-doubt, so don’t put your aspirations off any longer, get out there and go for it!