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Key steps before turning hobby into a business.

Byline: CAROLE WHITE

STARTING a new business is hard work. But any successful entrepreneur will tell you, it is much easier to find the drive and determination to pursue something you are passionate about than an occupation you struggle to get out of bed for each morning.

With this in mind, it is no surprise that so many business owners find a way to turn their hobbies into full-time work.

If you like the idea of setting up a business built on your passion, here are a few of the basics you should consider before turning your idea into a reality.

Finding enjoyment in work is important, but it won't pay the bills on its own. Your enthusiasm needs to be matched by skill and professionalism. After all, you will be charging people for these products or services and competing against other businesses for work.

Before you take the plunge into self-employment, you may want to put in place the foundations for your new enterprise in the form of classes and courses to gain any qualifications that may be of use.

Finding enjoyment in This will not only prove your competence but will also help to build confidence.

work is important, but it won't pay the bills on its own One of the simplest and most effective ways of getting your business known is to make the most of social media. Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter represent a low-cost alternative to traditional marketing techniques. Start by making sure that the content you post is as strong as it can be and use the knowledge you've gained about your hobby to inform your business updates. If you have something interesting to say and are prepared to take the time to engage with your followers, social media can be extremely effective.

Another great benefit of social media is that it gives you access to some fascinating insights. From breaking down your follower base by demographic and geographical area to understanding what type of products and services attract the greatest interest, social media is an incredibly powerful data tool.

Not only that, but you can also use social media to perform competitor analysis - assessing the strengths and weaknesses of businesses moving in the same space as yours.

Plan ahead - developing a business plan can help you to look beyond the basics of your hobby and help you understand what it will take to achieve genuine business success.

Whether it's obtaining premises, accessing funding, taking on staff or putting a business development pipeline in place, it's important to give yourself a framework to work within.

If you've never tried writing a business plan before, seek help from someone who can act as a good sounding board.

Carole White is chief executive of Tedco Business Support

Finding enjoyment in work is important, but it won't pay the bills on its own

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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Nov 23, 2017
Words:478
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