(By John Rampton)
“Many entrepreneurs accept less-than-great pay to gain experience or exposure. This can be a savvy move in the beginning, but do not be guilted into staying with a client because they gave you a shot. Charge what you’re worth, and realize that will steadily get higher as you gain more experience.“
Lifestyle entrepreneurs are truly living the dream. They work, make money and thrive online. Most do not have an established physical location (beyond a couch, coffee shop or occasional home office), and they certainly don’t need one to succeed. A lifestyle entrepreneur just needs two tools: a laptop and a reliable Wi-Fi connection.
Of course, you need other entrepreneurial basics, too, like fantastic ideas, skills, and a jack-of-all-trades mentality. However, does it really matter where you do business, as long as it gets done?
Around 2.5 billion people go online every day, and by 2020 that figure will double, according to tech writer Kimanzi Constable. The Internet is a nearly endless source of potential customers and clients for entrepreneurs. Already, there are many lifestyle entrepreneurs, but few are maximizing their potential in this realm (and there are probably many more who haven’t yet figured out this alluring lifestyle).
Some entrepreneurs have figured out how to legally and ethically work the system, and are enjoying some choice perks. For example, moving to another country with much lower cost of living, scoring that foreign income exemption and maybe living a dream of working beach-side is very possible for some lifestyle entrepreneurs. Should they need to consult “in person” with a client or investor, video conferencing or a phone call usually suffices.
However, it isn’t easy to become a lifestyle entrepreneur, but it is possible for many. If this sounds like the right track for you, start by choosing the best, profitable demographic. This isn’t a plea to choose a niche, because that is not always a necessity. It is better to have a specific idea rather than a specific niche. To make money, your target audience has to have money (I’ve tried the broke route and it’s a long one). If you have a great idea, but your target audience can’t afford it, it’s a long road ahead that won’t make money for a while. In my opinion, income generation potential is a key metric that you should make sure is present.
Here are four more steps to becoming the ultimate lifestyle entrepreneur:
1. Start from the ground up.
Your website should be the beginning, but it is never complete. Don’t over-invest in this arena. Instead, build a thriving online presence, work towards an emergency fund, engage with your audience, and seek out tools that can help your business grow.
2. Study what works.
Keep in mind that what works for others may not work for you. Figuring out what works for your business and you will involve research, trial and error. Testing is your friend, and failure can be a great teacher.
Once you’ve achieved some success, evaluate it. Could it be made even better? Don’t let the white noise overwhelm you, but do acknowledge, evaluate your business and grow it.
3. Grow your audience.
The more exposure you get, the faster your audience will grow. Seek out different means, such as being a guest on a podcast, on other blogs or on authority sites. This will grow your lifestyle business daily.
4. Charge what you’re worth.
Many entrepreneurs accept less-than-great pay to gain experience or exposure. This can be a savvy move in the beginning, but do not be guilted into staying with a client because they gave you a shot. Charge what you’re worth, and realize that will steadily get higher as you gain more experience.
Being a lifestyle entrepreneur is likely more achievable than you think. However, it is not the best fit for everyone. Before even pursuing this track, make sure you’re the type of entrepreneur cut out for such a lifestyle, because otherwise you will stumble with every step.
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