Turn Your Part-Time Gig into a Full-Time Business
Work smarter not harder: how to transform gig-worker status into next-level business.
Your side hustle may not be just a side hustle. It’s a passion. Perhaps it’s even a calling. No matter how you define it — it’s already making you money, earning the attention of clients and competitors alike, and taking up more of your time than you ever imagined.
Does that mean, though, that you’re ready to make the leap? That it’s time now, to turn your part-time gig into a full-time business?
Explore more, how to determine if you’re ready to make the move from freelancer to entrepreneur. As well, discover tips to help ensure the transition is a successful one.
Are you ready to make the leap?
From Side Hustle to Full-Time Business
There’s no doubt about it, freelancing is big business in the United States. In fact, it’s estimated that by the year 2027, nearly 90 million people, or slightly more than half of the entire U.S. workforce, will be freelancing.
Not all of those freelance gigs will translate into successful full-time businesses, however. So how do you know if your side hustle has the makings of a thriving enterprise?
The first test is to understand the difference between freelancing and entrepreneurship.
When you’re freelancing, for example, the priority is the work and the money you can make from each gig or project. You’re directly, and perhaps even solely, involved in producing the goods or delivering the service.
When you’re an entrepreneur, however, the focus is on the business, on setting up systems that will do the work and make you (and your employees and investors) the money. This means that odds are, you’re often going to be at least one step removed from the production or service delivery process.
Are you ready to become an entrepreneur?
Instead of doing it yourself, in other words, you’ll likely spend a lot of time training and then leading others. It’s a bit like going from being the soloist in an orchestra to being the orchestra’s conductor.
Thus, if you’re thinking of turning your side hustle into a business, then you need to be prepared to play a very different role regarding the work than you now play as a gig worker.
However, if you find that you’re ready for a change, and you’ve already built up the resources, the market interest, and the clientele to support a startup, it may well be time to take your work from a side hustle to a full-fledged money-making enterprise.
Define Your Niche
As a freelancer, you probably grew accustomed to taking gigs wherever, whenever, and from whomever they came. However, that model probably isn’t going to serve you well as a business owner.
Instead, if you want your startup to not just survive, but to grow, then you will need to be clear about exactly who you are serving and why. To put it in the language of business, you need to define exactly what the value proposition of your business is.
To figure out your company’s unique value proposition, you need to determine exactly what need your company is meeting or what problem it is solving in its target market and for whom.
What problem are you uniquely solving?
Once you understand the “what,” the “why,” and the “for whom” of your startup, you’ll be able to tailor not only your business model but also your marketing, product development, and service delivery strategies accordingly.
On the other hand, if you can’t answer these questions, then this may be an indicator that you haven’t targeted the right idea yet.
After all, if your freelancing has you doing everything from tuning pianos or giving music lessons to writing jingles, that could be an indicator that there’s not enough market demand to sustain a business built around any of these services. True, the gigs may provide enough money to feed your family and keep the lights on, but it may not be sufficient to sustain a roster of employees or to entice and recompense investors.
Get Your Financial House in Order
If you’ve determined that you have both the motivation and the market to transform your gig into a viable full-time business, then it’s time to start taking stock of your finances. One of the most significant obstacles aspiring entrepreneurs face, is funding.
In addition to tapping into any savings you might have squirreled away from freelancing, you might consider applying for a small business loan. Your history of success as a freelancer may, indeed, go far in reassuring potential enders that there is a strong market for the product you intend to provide.
The same is true if you hope to finance your startup by securing investors. The key, however, is to have a detailed and viable business plan, as well as a great presentation that makes an irresistible case for why would-be investors would risk their money supporting your endeavor.
What’s your business plan?
You love your freelance work, but you’re ready for a change. You’re ready for new challenges and greater growth. In short, you’re ready to turn your side-hustle into a full-time business. The key to this transition is to ask the right questions, do your market research, define your strategy, and establish a strong financial footing.
(Learn more about worker definition, laws, and resources in Colorado, at: CDLE)
Noah Rue is a journalist and content writer, fascinated with the intersection between global health, personal wellness, and modern technology. When he isn’t searching out his next great writing opportunity, Noah likes to shut off his devices and head to the mountains to disconnect.