Yesterday, I told you how we started our swimming pool business from home. I forgot to mention that we also had a sign put on the back of our truck. We also had shirts made. When in business, advertising is extremely important!! You have to let people know what you're doing. After 6 years in our pool business, in a small town, we still have people tell us they didn't even know we were here.
But, let's move on. I'll tell you how we changed from a home based business to a traditional store front. When we were working from home, we were just a service company. We tried to get into some retail and offered free home delivery but it was hard and people like to go buy products. So, that part didn't work out. Which reminds me of somerhing else important to think about when you're deciding what you want to do. You want to fill a void somewhere. Meaning, you want to offer products or services that are unique or lacking in your community.
If you'll recall from yesterday, my husband was selling cars for a GM company. Every day, he would tell me how much he hated his job. I would respond with "Quit!! We'll open our pool store and it will be fine." He wouldn't do it. He was afraid of quitting his crappy job and losing his increasingly smaller albeit steady income. So you know, there is some risk involved when you're in business for yourself. As you may know, GM has had their own financial struggles. So, quit, shmit! He got laid off! He called me while I was working and told me. What I didn't tell you is every night, that man would lie in bed at night worried about money and his job. He'd already made it through several rounds of lay offs.
So, that was a PERFECT time to open a store! :) So, the absolute first thing we did was figure out how much money we needed up front. We had to figure rent, utilities, signage, office eqipment, and oh yeah! INVENTORY!!
Once we did that, we decided we didn't want to go into debt. So, we started small. That's worked very well for us, but we don't have any competition. Think about that for YOUR business. How will you set yourself apart from the competition? We started with about $9,000. Once we had a store front, sales reps started calling on us. I called them and told them we just opened a retail location and asked if they had any display items for free. You know what? They do!! And they start giving you all kinds of stuff to promote their products.
Now, I still go out and do all the service work, along with Jake and Melanie. And Robbie mans the store. It's like our little home away from home! (We have high speed internet there!)
Now, on Sunday night, Robbie actually looks forward to Monday instead of the cranky dread he was feeling before. He's much easier to get along with too!
Which brings me to one other thing.When you're in business for yourself, you generally will have to work harder, longer hours than if you work for someone else. I think its worth it, though.
"Profits are better than wages!" - Jim Rohn
Tomorrow, I'll tell you how we got into network marketing. You won't want to miss it! It can change your life. It did ours.Search Amazon.com for zig ziglar