Turning Your Hobby Into a Business: Part 1

Have you considered turning your hobby or passion into a business?

It’s everyone’s dream to be paid to do what they love, isn’t it? For some that dream can become a reality. But this isn’t the case for all.

If your hobby is watching Eastenders or reading romance novels then quite clearly it’s going to be difficult to turn that into paying work.

I guess what I’m trying to say is be realistic. Some hobbies and passions lend themselves to becoming paying gigs, others do not.

Things to consider before trying to turn your hobby into a business;

1. Is my hobby something that someone would pay for, whether it be a product or service.

I will quite happily pay you to build me a website but I’m not going to pay you to tell me what happened in Eastenders last night.

The best way to find out if people would buy your product or pay for your service is ask.

However avoid asking family or friends as nine times out of ten they will tell you what you want to hear. Set up a basic poll and put it on your website or blog, this will allow people to confidentially let you know if your idea has legs. Your market research shouldn’t stop there, if it looks like it has potential you then need to do some second stage research. Find your target market and ask them if they would pay for your product or service, how much, and how often etc.

You may have to think out of the box for ways to make your hobby into a profitable venture. I enjoy playing poker but I’m not good enough to make a steady income (ie. pay my mortgage) from it so instead I got a freelance writing job writing about…you guessed it, poker!

Think of alternative ways to turn your hobby or passion into an income stream.

2. Can my hobby become a viable business, that is, can it be profitable?

It’s fun making handmade cards but can it be a profitable business? Can you produce enough cards per hour to provide a decent hourly rate?

You need to bring together your costings (how much does it cost to produce each card) with your market research (how much are buyers willing to pay) with a bit of time analysis (how long do they take to produce).

Do the figures stack up?

As much as you might love the idea of spending your days making beautiful handmade cards, if it’s not profitable then you’re wasting your time.

Unfortunately this is where many mums in business slip up, especially if you’re not programmed to think mathematically. Don’t fall into the trap of creating a business that doesn’t make any money.

If I can sell a handmade card for £3 and it cost me £3 to produce then I don’t have a business, I have a ‘job’ that pays me approx £0 per hour.

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