If you dream about being your own boss or doing something you’re passionate about, you’re not alone. According to GoDaddy research, a quarter (24 per cent) of Aussies have a dream to start their own business or side hustle. Of those, 53 per cent actively think about it at least once a week. Australia is already home to 2.3 million entrepreneurs and small businesses, and as people seek more meaning and control in their careers, it’s a sector we expect to grow, writes Tamara Oppen Managing Director of Go Daddy Australia.
A side hustle can be an appealing, flexible and rewarding way to earn extra money, explore self-employment and bring an entrepreneurial idea to life. If you’re inspired by the thought of turning passion into a side hustle, here’s a couple of considerations to get you started.
Step one: Identify your ‘why’
First, find your ‘why’ and decide what it is you want to do or create. Being clear on your ‘why’ will help you develop and market your idea. There is no right or wrong ‘why’; some people want to pursue a hobby, others want to earn additional money on the side, and some want to test out a full-time business idea. Starting a side hustle requires dedication and focus, so it helps if you are genuinely passionate and clear about your idea.
A great example of someone turning a passion into their ‘why’ is Melissa Wu, four-time Olympian and recent bronze medalist in Tokyo. Melissa is also the founder of three businesses, each relating to her passions around health and fitness, diving and sports activewear. Creating a business can be challenging, so an idea that you believe in and are passionate about is important for motivation.
Step two: Planning and setting goals
Developing a business plan with clear objectives and goals can be the difference between success and struggles. Finding a gap in the market and solving a consumer problem are what entrepreneurs do best. Decide how to differentiate your offering, and who you are targeting. Test your idea or product on your target audience and listen to feedback – it might shape your side hustle in ways you hadn’t considered.
Use these insights to create a business plan, and set SMART goals: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based. For example, if you’re selling beach towels, a SMART goal could be to sell 50 by the start of summer. Track your progress daily, and don’t be afraid to change things up – adaptability is a powerful trait.
Step three: Bring it to life
Next, it’s time to name your side hustle and make it official with a website. For the name, think about something that’s memorable, representative or meaningful. For example, Melissa named one of her businesses, HrdKAW Strength. It combines the initials of her sister, Kirsten Amelia Wu, with the word ‘hardcore’, which is often associated with the type of intense weightlifting coaching the business provides.
Once you have decided your busines name, register your domain name. You will need an ABN (Australian Business Number) to be eligible to register a ‘.com.au’ domain, then bring it to life by building your website. A website is a great way to bring your side hustle to life and share it with your audience – many of whom today use online channels as their primary engagement with a business. On your website promote your story and what sets you apart, showcase your product or service with great imagery, and include positive customer testimonials. And if you’re selling products, consider an eCommerce page so people can buy them. There’s so much you can do with a website today but start with the basics and build from there. You don’t need to be a design expert, many tools and templates to help you create something beautiful in next to no time and for free.
Step four: Find your customers
Social media is an excellent way to promote your side hustle on channels Australians use regularly. On Instagram, 90 per cent of users follow a business, and 50 pr cent are more interested in a brand when they see an advert on their feed. Email marketing is another cost-effective, engaging way to connect with your customers. Creating an email address that is consistent with your domain name helps you reinforce your brand with every email.
Continuously evaluate your business as it grows. Engage with your customers and network, join start-up and entrepreneur communities, and listen to podcasts for ideas to continually improve and modify your side hustle.
Starting a side hustle is exciting, especially if you’re inspired by autonomy, flexibility and control. So whether you just want to earn a little extra on the side or have a big idea and bold visions, consider these steps and who knows where your side hustle could take you.
This post originally appeared on Kochie’s Business Builders, you can read it here.
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