Funding Your Future: Turning a Hobby into a Business

Taking something that you love doing and finding a way to get paid doing it sounds like a great idea.  But, it's not always easy.

David Sant, Chief Marketing Officer for Cyprus Credit Union, joined us with some tips for turning your hobby into a business.

Have a Plan
Every great business needs to start with a plan. This will require you to sit down and do some research about the market as well as create goals and strategies for your personal business. This plan should include an analysis of your business, your strengths and weaknesses and very specific goals.
Separate Business and Personal
Once you start making a profit, you need to start treating your hobby differently. This means reporting your income and expenses on your tax returns. Setting up a separate account for your business will help you stay organized and prevent any tax trouble down the line.
Be Prepared to Work
Once you need to meet the demands of paying customers and hit deadlines, your hobby may start to feel less fun. It may be helpful to start slow and work your way up into a full-fledged business in order to judge how you'll carry the extra responsibility.
Promote Yourself
It's one thing to have friends or family interested in your product, but creating a market is a whole different matter. Part of your business plan should include how to find consumers. Some great ways to do this is through social media and/or a website. Reach out to loved ones about sharing your pages with their friends. Seek out potential networking opportunities to help your business grow.
Ask for Advice
Seek out others who have made their hobbies a business. Sit down and talk with them ask them about their successes and their failures. Ask what they would have done differently and what they have done well. Owning your own business is a challenge, going into it with little to no experience will make it extremely difficult. However, by getting as much advice as possible, you can minimize the learning curve.

You can get more financial advice and ideas at: cypruscu.com.

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