5 Steps For Turning Your Hobby Into A Business by Derek Goodman

Guest Post 

Editor's Note: Some authors decide to go beyond simply writing articles or books to become "authorpreneurs" —writers who turn their writing into a business by offering products and services based on their written works. Derek Coleman offers some tips to help you get started on your journey.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio

Have you ever thought about turning your hobby into a profitable small business in Iowa City, IA, or online? You may have a pastime that easily becomes a brick-and-mortar store, or perhaps you've already toyed with selling goods and services online. Converting your hobby into something professional will take time, hard work, and patience. 

Remember that many people engage in hobbies as distractions from responsibilities such as work, family care, and chores. Some people are happy doing what they love for work, while others prefer to keep their favorite pastimes as outlets for stress and creativity. If you're the type of person who loves the challenge of entrepreneurship, turning your hobby into a business is a great place to start. Consider these steps as you begin the process. 

1. Find Your Platform 

You may wish to set up your website to enable e-commerce or you might start a brick-and-mortar store—or you might want to do a little bit of both. It's important to know who you're selling to as well as where this type of customer may buy items they're searching for. For example, consider a person who wishes to sell homemade soup on an e-commerce platform. His or her best bet for consistent sales is a customer-to-customer sales platform such as Etsy, Amazon, or Squarespace. This person could make a plan to select a platform, set rates, and upload pictures of his or her soap.

2. Brainstorm About Your Brand

Building a brand involves creating a business name, a logo, and a narrative that speaks to your customer base. Consider working with a writer from to create engaging and descriptive marketing content that showcases your brand. It's important for your brand to reflect professionalism as well as integrity.

3. Establish Your Social Media Before You Launch

Digital marketing can be a valuable tool for those just starting out—but how do you sell to people when they don't know who you are? This is where social media comes in. Try establishing your website as well as starting Facebook groups, gaining Instagram followers, and putting out TikTok videos to get the word out about your brand before you even launch. 

4. Complete Your Legal Paperwork 

According to the IRS, there are several steps you'll need to take to legitimize your new small business. For example, are you registering your entity as an LLC? Do you know how to file your taxes at the end of the year? How will you pay the freelancers you may hire to build your website, design your logo, or write content for your social media? While these questions may seem intimidating at first, it's a good idea to familiarize yourself with these processes (and get answers) for yourself now rather than later. You can find many of the templates and documents that you'll need online. 

5. Develop A Budget 

You may have not had to track your expenses for your hobby thus far, but now you should. You'll have to keep track of your spending and report the amount of money you make to the IRS at the end of every tax year. Be sure to pick accounting software that can link with your tax program if you plan to do your business taxes by yourself.

These five steps should start you in the right direction if you wish to turn your hobby into a business. Don't get frustrated if it doesn't immediately take off. Many profitable companies have experienced a slow, steady path to success!

Derek Goodman is an entrepreneur. He'd always wanted to make his own future, and he knew growing his own business was the only way to do that. He created his site, "Inbizability," ( to offer you tips, tricks, and resources so that you realize your business ability and potential now, not later. 

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