Even if every single class I’ve ever taken applied to entrepreneurship, which I can assure you is not the case, it’s hard to take what we learn in a classroom and apply it to the world around us. I learned more in my first week of trying to come up with a business idea than I did in at least half of the classes that I took throughout my high school career – for many young people this is the case.
Take it seriously. Yes, you’re applying for an online job. Yes, you can do the work in your underwear, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a “real job”. You must treat it as such or they aren’t going to treat you as a serious candidate. You aren’t the only one who wants to work in their underwear. In fact, the competition online is likely higher than it is in your local area.
What good is a successful startup if you destroy yourself in the process? Nothing is as precious as health, which is why you shouldn’t sacrifice your well-being for the sake of your entrepreneurship. In fact, what might seem like hard work could ultimately derail your career. Losing sleep, eating unhealthily and allowing yourself to become stressed are surefire ways to shorten your life expectancy. By tending to your health, you’ll have the strength to carry out your goals.
Post Daily — Ensure that you are not just posting your buy links, or marketing information because people will unfollow you. Instead share great content that adds value for your customer. Give them coupons, funny videos, awesome quotes and even how to videos your customer would enjoy. When you’re thinking of what content to post it’s good to follow the 80% Social 20% Marketing Rule. This means for every 10 post you do each day, only 2 of them should be direct marketing post. If you follow this principal your social media accounts will grow.
It would almost seem remiss not to mention HubSpot’s marketing blog on this list, as so many modern marketers have taught themselves digital and inbound marketing through HubSpot. Between their years of daily blog content on all things marketing, hundreds of downloadable resources, free tools, and their free marketing courses and certifications, they practically provide an entire curriculum for their target audience and customers.
Unlike freelancing, though, this is a bit of a tougher nut to crack. It’s not as easy to have a predictable stream of revenue until your app is already out and selling, and by then you’ve already put in a lot of time and energy. You’ll want to be sure that there’s a market out there for the product you’re creating—and that people are willing to pay for it.
Digital products like workshops, courses and membership sites have become popular among entrepreneurs with strong personal brands and businesses with potent content teams. This collateral represents an opportunity to monetize marketing in ways other than moving the target audience through the company’s main sales funnel. As Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose of the aforementioned CMI have posited in their book Killing Marketing, introducing products like these to your business model gives you the opportunity to operate marketing as a profit center.
Do you love taking pictures and have a general passion for photography? If so, you could make a very nice living for yourself online selling your photos. There are countless people who are willing to pay you good money for your collection of unique images you have to offer. Today more than ever it’s super easy to submit your pics to the masses, which can provide you with a very convenient approach to creating a solid source of additional income. Several stock photo sites like Shutterstock and Fotolia offer enticing incentives for individuals to earn money passively from the photos they randomly shoot in their spare time.
If you’re serious about making money selling things online, it’s pretty much impossible to not recommend Shopify. The platform gives you everything you need to get your online store up and running in less than a day including a custom domain, beautiful templates (so you don’t need design skills), secure payment options, and they can even take care of marketing and shipping for you. Whether you’re promoting your own products, designs, or curating other products for people in your niche, Shopify is the best option for powering your online store.
Write pitches. If you have located a client for whom you want to write, send pitches, which are topic ideas for articles. Write pitches that not only show your expertise, but also demonstrate your enthusiasm for the topic. First, read the publication to which you are sending pitches to familiarize yourself with what they publish. If applicable, identify a specific section and send our pitch to the appropriate editor. Also, include a brief summary of who you are.
There are no limits to the types of business you can stand on the internet. One of the business that you can stand online is a maid agency services. Part of what you need to do get this type of business rolling is to network with maid agencies in different cities within your coverage area and help them list maid services online. You can make good commissions from this type of business.
The same can be done with professional goals. Don't make your goal to start a company or get promoted to an executive-level position right off the bat. Instead, identify skills and areas of improvement. Start with one of those by taking a course, working with a business advisor or doing research. These relevant steps will help you on your way to that larger, more complex goal.
There you have it – a comprehensive guide to the best online businesses to start this year. We deliberately didn't cover ideas like app development or IT support because they require specialized skills. That's why we only provided you with businesses you can start with very little money. In fact, you can even start some of them with very little knowledge.
Jim is the Founder and CEO of Owler, a crowdsourced competitive intelligence platform. Prior to Owler, Jim founded Jigsaw in 2003 and was CEO until it was acquired by Salesforce in 2010 for $175 million. Before his career in technology, Jim was owner and operator of Lookout Pass, a ski resort in Idaho, and served in the U.S. Navy as a diving and salvage officer. He's seriously the man. Here's Jim's business advice to first-time entrepreneur who want to start a business:
Resist the temptation to splash out on fancy offices, expensive equipment and over-the-top marketing. Your company’s livelihood depends on what’s in your wallet so every rand and cent must be triple-checked. Maintain a low overhead and manage your cash flow effectively. For one of our 1001 days survivors Jamie Pike, this meant foregoing a physical shop at first and selling his wares at a market; for design duo JesseJames it meant sharing their premises with other small businesses.
Digiday covers all things digital marketing for big brands. We especially love their site because we get to examine how digital marketing plays out on a much larger scale. Big brands are just like us — they too need digital marketing — and reading about them is fun! This helps us examine our digital marketing strategies from a different perspective and up our game.
Digital marketing is defined by the use of numerous digital tactics and channels to connect with customers where they spend much of their time: online. From the website itself to a business's online branding assets -- digital advertising, email marketing, online brochures, and beyond -- there's a spectrum of tactics that fall under the umbrella of "digital marketing."