This book was on my mind to read for many years. I’ve always wanted to start a side business of some sort in addition to my day job to earn a little extra money and gain new skills and experiences. I’m really glad I did and now have a dog sitting business that I do part time on nights and weekends. This book is a nice entry into how to do that.
Below are my typed up notes throught the book.
Convergence is where you find your ‘passion’ and ‘will people pay you for it’ collide.
ie. For me..dog sitting
Skill transformation: Know that you’re probably good at more than one thing.
passion/sill + usefulness = success($$$)
You only really need three things.
- Product or service, what to sell.
- Dog sitting sells peace of mind.
- People willing to pay: Customers.
-People that go on vacation or are too busy with work/other obligations.
- A way to get paid. How to exchange product/service.
-Paypal, check, cash.
Some sources of inspiration:
new technology or opportunity (ie apps after iPhone was launched)
spin off or side project of another thing
inefficiency in the marketplace
value: Is creating something desirable.
how to get $
how much to charge?
Can I get paid to do it?
Ask yourself, how can I give more value?
i. How can I help customers more?
Always dig deeper to hidden wants and needs. Make your customer a hero and sell what people buy.
Setup a simple bootstrap website for pet sitting. (use bootstrap for experience)
“An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory.”
Free time, less stress/worry
Market the core benefit(emotional) vs a list of features.
Peace of mind, stress free, anxiety free, time to go travel and enjoy life.
Don’t get paid for the hobby itself, but paid for helping other people pursue the hobby or something indirectly related to it.
ie. fluent in 3 months example.
Build dog sitting business
The beginning there is a fair amount of fumbling and a large number of hours spent working on projects that may or may not succeed.
Demographics: People with $$ and a little time who value their dogs well-being. OR people with lots of free time to travel that want peace of mind when they are gone.
Use surveys to understand customers and prospects
get started quickly and see what happens.
Idea: Dog sitting is it useful to peole that will pay $$ for it.
“meet and greet”. Time usually an hour plus travel.My first ‘sale’ = $163“Your 1st sale in a new business is a very big deal”
Mission Statement: I help dog owners feel at ease about their dogs when the;yre not able to be with them.
_“Plan as you go”_to respond to changing needs of your customers, but launch it ASAP.
140 char mission statement
Understand what we want and what we say we want are not equal.
People like to buy, but we don’t like to be sold.
FAQ or also known as
“What I want you to know”
Connect your offer to the direct benefits that your customers will receive.
Think about possible objections and respond to them in advance.
Provide a nudge or call to action. Why should they act now? “I’m filling up fast!”
Contain admission of uncertainty and then augment. Work and talk fue
One page promotion plan
Spend 50% connecting and 50% creating.
Spend $ on things that will A) Build awareness or B) Boost sales. Always remember to focus on profit.
Price product or service in relation that the benefit provides the customer not the cost.
Offer a limited range of prices. low medium think. (Think apple example).
Get paid more than once for the same thing.
None of the people I met offered the lowest price
Compete on value, not on price. Only the market will decide if its too expensive for other people.
Anchor a really high price and then other prices as well ie. $80 hike + overnight stay.
Recurring billing model will produce more income over time than a single sale model..ie repeat clients.
“It’s not market share, its share of the customer.”
Getting started is the hardest part.
Provide testimonials on the site, upsell hiking adventures.
Encourage referrals, “3-days free” if you refer me to a new client.
Building a pet sitting business, for working professionals/ 9-5ers.
Service: Raise prices regularly. When clients say your prices are too low, you should listen. ie. Ethan telling me that I am underselling myself.
Maintain a practice of regular price increases so it becomes normal and expected. Price on the basis of value not time. Talk about yourself and your business.
Track record, meet and greets, nights got $$
What do you love to do and what people will pay for.
- Give people the benefits, don’t teach them how to fish..just give them the damn fish.
- Know that you are good at more than one thing.
- Complete one page business plan
- 140 char mission statement
- Action always beats out planning.
“Don’t waste your time living someone else’s life.”
Freedom is the goal and delivering value is the currency that will take you there.
Lots of additional resources at 100 startup website
Some recommended reading
- Charming the serpent
- Fragile state.