Today I'm starting a new series called #StartSmallStartSmart inspired by the mini lessons I seem apt to write on Instagram.
I couldn't agree more.
But sometimes I get so down deep in the grind, that I could use a reminder. And I'm thinking you may need one from time to time too. So today I want to add my two cents to this conversation and get back to the basics:
The Cliff Notes Version of a Business
Essentially you can define a business (or a side hustle) by these 2 thoughts:
- the problem that you solve for others
- how you earn income by solving that problem
Defining a problem and finding it's solution is the first step to starting a business.
The tricky part is that if you want to earn money from it, it has to be a problem that others will actually pay to have solved.
An Example of Defining a Problem
(aka Story Time)
I sometimes have trouble sorting through the gillions of files on my computer and hard drive.
But I'm not going to pay someone to help organize them (that just sounds expensive) or hire someone every time I need help finding something. Instead, I may pay for a video or ebook that shows me how to name & organize my files in a systematic way that makes it easy for me to search.
So what's the problem behind this solution?
The problem isn't that I can't find my files. The problem is I don't know how to name & organize them correctly.Which can lead to wasted time, headaches, or potentially negative relationships with clients or customers.
And though I've never been in this situation (I'm much more organized than I'm letting on for the sake of this post)... That's how you would need to position it to your audience.
This is not being sneaky or "salesy". After all, it is a simple problem that many online business owners face. And sometimes we live with problems just because we don't realize that there is a solution for them.
Or, because we don't have the time to create that solution for ourselves - but others will and will make a business of out of doing so (and maybe that's you...)!
Maybe you already know the solution to the problem that your business is solving, but are you communicating it in a way that your customers can resonate with?
How Can Artists & Musicians Solve a Problem for Business?
And if you're thinking "I'm an musician/artist, what problem do I solve?" I would rephrase the question.
Think what problem you can solve and position your business in that way.
"I write music for those who feel disconnected in an ever growing social sharing world"
- The problem: We want a healthy outlet that let's us feel connected to others in a deeper and more emotional way than social media can provide.
"I paint one of a kind paintings from 3 objects of your choosing that help tell the story of who you are"
- The problem: we all want to feel unique and special in some way, and this is just one way to help solve that need.
The Moral of Today's Story:
Every business solves a problem.
You could own a dog walking service or a boutique cupcake shop, or be a health coach or an online graphic designer - but when you break it down you are still solving a problem that someone is willing to support you for in exchange for your help.
So whenever you get lost or are confused about your business direction, go back to this question:
What's the problem that you are solving for others?
And answer it again or in a new way if you have to.
Need Further Help?
If you need help figuring out the problem your side hustle actually solves, then take my free course Do THIS Before You Brand.
In it I cover all the things needed before you start to brand - from figuring the problem you really solve, to creating a brand inspiration mood board.
That's all for today. Until the next time...