My biggest dream from when I got my first computer at the age of 12 was to make money from home off the Internet. Remember those large box monitors with those big bulky towers that sit on the floor in that awful off-white color? Yeah, that type of computer. We have come a long way.
I designed websites and graphics in my teens. I literally sat in my bedroom practicing web design day and night. Self taught and self motivated. I knew I wanted to set my own goals instead of working for someone else who had their own goals.
When I was younger, I started my own unofficial creative company designing logos and websites for clients. I figured this was a great start to something big. I've bought books about starting up your own Internet business. They were a big help but the problem was building capital in order to stay afloat. Coding websites and designing graphics takes a lot of your time. For the best work, you need no distractions. While I was planning on growing my online creative company, I was working retail. I got good at it. I got promoted. I moved to manage my own retail store. Short story, it became fairly easy to talk with people, make them happy, and get them to buy things.
The reason I am telling you all of this is because sometimes your biggest goals end up taking a turn...for the better, even. I went from working on building one business to actually building another. The big picture is I am making money from the Internet. Something I've wanted to do since I was 12 (I am 26 now). It's just in a different form from what I've originally visioned.
With the creative industry changing year by year with apps and such, it's become harder to keep up and self-teaching becomes more difficult when you have bills and responsibilities now. Something I didn't have when I was learning how to code and design basic websites in my teens.
I now run a popular online men's jewelry and apparel shop with thousands of views daily and over 17,000+ social media following. I still get to design and use my hands and I have been very blessed with what it has become today just after 2 and a half years in business.
Here are some steps I've learned from my experience with making money off the Internet:
1) Don't rush your process. Whatever you are wanting to achieve and sell will only be as good as the amount of time you put into it.
2) Start now. Not tomorrow but now. Time is needed to grow your audience and unless you have thousands for marketing, it's better to begin sooner rather than later to get your online business going. Start drawing up your plans for your business. See where brainstorming leads.
3) You're never too young or old to start your journey into self-employment off the Internet. Who knows what type of empire you may create. Don't let age affect your dream.
4) Don't be shocked if your vision turns in another direction. I am living proof that it does happen and it's usually for the better. This happens way more than you think so don't be distraught if your original plan changes. I went from making money weekly to making money daily.
5) Know when it's time to go all in. Quitting your day job is a risk but sometimes that risk is needed to fully put in positive effort with your growing business. This may take 6 months to 2 years to achieve (or longer). You can read more about that from a blog post I wrote here.
6) Do not be discourage of those around you who do not understand your vision for making money online. Most likely they are not the creative type and seek to work for someone else with a vision. This sort of thing can really break some one's concentration and give them total doubt about what they are doing. Who knows, maybe that person will work for you one day. I wrote an entire blog post about this.
7) Start small but stay affective. If you try to do too much all at once it will lower the quality of your work. You will get inpatient. Don't be. Take your time and stick with adding products and/or services day by day that you may provide for your online business.
8) Marketing your work through social media. Grab an audience's attention. Send newsletters. TELL PEOPLE ABOUT YOUR ONLINE BUSINESS. One problem with an online business is people don't know about it until you communicate about it. This isn't a store front or a pop up shop where customers can see by driving past it. People have to visit your work to purchase your work. Find common online businesses like yours and grow relationships. You never know when sending an e-mail or direct message could grow your online business in a flash. Knowing the right people helps but you have to get them to know you first.
9) Finally, keep it going. Starting a business online is definitely a self-starters job. If you sleep, eat, and breath success you will have no problem. If achieving goals doesn't excite you like it should, then the lack of enthusiasm will make your brand suffer. Everyday you have to think of new ideas, keep up with emails and social networking questions. Being self-employed actually means you work harder than working for someone else. You don't get paid unless you DO SOMETHING.
Sorry for the lengthy post, but I wanted to share my experiences with you all just in case there are some of you who just don't know where to start. I hope this helps! :)
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