Become A Solopreneur – Start With These 10 Simple Steps
Want to become a solopreneur?
A solopreneur takes their professional journey into their own hands. They’re a one-man team, a one-man band, a one-man army.
If the research and execution are thorough, then there’s no stopping a solopreneur from attaining success and even potentially expanding their solo business into something more.
If you’re looking to become a solopreneur and don’t know where to begin, this article is a good starting point.
Here, we’ve listed the 10 steps you can undertake to kickstart your solopreneur journey.
10 Steps To Become A Solopreneur
Step 1: Identify Your Strengths And Passions
Your strengths and passions are usually going to dictate what your product or service is going to be. It may end up being something completely different. However, they’ll still serve a purpose in your business.
Create a mind map and list down the things you can do, things you’re good at, and things you want to do. It’ll give you a clear idea of what to pursue and how to use your abilities efficiently.
Step 2: Identify Your Weaknesses
And not the facetious kind that many talk about during job interviews (let’s be honest, we’ve all used one of those).
When you become a solopreneur, you handle the A to Z of your business. You’re the salesperson, the CEO, the head of marketing, etc.
However, you can’t expect yourself to be good at everything. This is why in your mindmap must list down things you cannot do or need to work on.
Once you identify those weaknesses, you can decide to learn them or hire another solopreneur to freelance for you.
Step 3: Conduct Research On The Marketability Of Your Business
Part of wanting to become a solopreneur is understanding that your business idea may not have enough demand in the market.
However, that shouldn’t dissuade you from your journey. It simply means that you need to head back to the drawing board and modify or change your idea.
Look at and these and make a call:
- Growth numbers in the industry.
- Secondary data on what customers want, what they’re happy with and what they’re complaining about, etc.
- Customer demographics, psychographics, and behavioral traits.
It’s better to know this information and put a halt to the business than suffer avoidable losses.
Step 4: Create A Budget
You can’t become a solopreneur without capital. And that capital will usually come through personal funds, investments, or loans from banks.
Whether you’re doing this for yourself, or reasoning with friends, family, or banks, a detailed budget is a must. It keeps you and your activities in check, as well.
Step 5: Create A Brand And Brand Voice
When you become a solopreneur, you’re not just responsible for the product/service, but also the brand image. Do these things:
Choose a name for your business: Your online business name can be personal, something that helps explain your product, details your brand voice, or a mixture of all three.
Build an online presence: Get on social media and start communicating! Put product pictures, memes, long and short-form content, etc.
This will also help you communicate your brand voice effectively- how you talk to fans, what you say, etc. Look at Wendy’s social media for inspiration.
Choose brand aesthetics: Once you have your product and market figured out, choose brand colors, packaging, fonts- the things that customers and onlookers first see about your products.
You can always get this outsourced, but there are tools such as Plutchik’s Wheel of Emotions that can help you choose colors.
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Step 6: Start Off With A Test Market
This step can come even before you finalize your budget and attempt to get investments. Creating prototypes of your products and trying them out in a small geographical area is always a good idea.
It’ll give you an idea of how customers react to your products, what they think can improve and what the overall demand for them is.
Best case scenario, you’ve got a hit on your hands. Worst case- you’ll need to go back to the drawing board.
Step 7: Network, Network, Network!
You can’t become a solopreneur without a solid network. Go to conventions to find suppliers, customers (if you’re B2B), investors, etc.
You can also network online with social media websites like LinkedIn. You can even find mentors there who can help you forge a career path.
Step 8: Practice Continuous Improvement
Your journey as a solopreneur does not end once the product/service is out there. There are always kinks and bugs to be figured out and knobs to be tightened.
Continuous improvement and small upgrades over time help keep your offerings fresh and up to the mark. Being proactive about feedback from your customers and actually implementing it is the key here.
Step 9: Automate Your Business
Just because you’ve become a solopreneur doesn’t mean that you dedicate your entire life to every single process of running your business.
Invest in tools and tech that help automate aspects of your business you don’t want to execute on a daily basis.
Apps such as Hootsuite make social media a breeze, whereas apps such as IFTTT will make just about any task easy. Look into automation software to focus on the bigger things about your business.
Step 10: Stick To Your Vision
It can seem tempting to veer in direction B, because of certain numbers, sales, customer responses, etc, Don’t do it unless there’s data and thought to back it up.
Visions can change. It is very common. Companies such as IBM have gone through total overhauls. It isn’t unheard of. However, those decisions were made with great consideration.
Solopreneurship has the gift of one person making a decision. This can also be a curse depending on how you use your sole authority.
Starting a solopreneurship journey is a lot easier than beginning a business with multiple owners, employees, and greater assets. However, the research and work involved should be just as thorough and serious.
In order to attain success lay out a mind map and consider all the factors involved in starting your specific business.
It depends from business to business and industry to industry, but the steps mentioned above are a good starting point.