Finding the ideal career is not always easy, particularly if you consider yourself pretty creative. Often, creative sorts don't fare that well working for someone else and doing the same mundane job day in and day out. Well, the good news is that these days you don't have to do that, as there are plenty of options available for creative people that want to get into their perfect career and earn a great income.
With your creativity and ambition, there are various different options you can look at on a self employed basis. By choosing the right career path and putting your time and effort into getting your business off the ground, you can look forward to a far more lucrative future, flexibility in terms of your hours and days worked, and the ability to be your own boss while doing a job that really appeals to you.
Some Top Options for Creative People
There are actually many self-employed career options you can consider if you are a creative person with bags of ambition. One of the things you can do is set up as a mobile beautician, providing services those who want to look and feel great for a special event or just in general. Your creativity can be put to good use by helping others to achieve the perfect look and giving them more confidence in themselves. By doing this on a mobile basis, you can travel to your customers, which means you don't have to worry about paying to rent or buy a salon for your business. By getting a suitable qualification in cosmetology, you can choose a career option that can ensure you enjoy a brighter future.
Another great option for those who are creative and ambitious is to set up a business as a web designer. If you have tech skills as well as creativity, this could be an ideal job for you. By setting up a home office, you can work from the comfort and convenience of your own home. You can also enjoy working for clients in many different industries and from countries around the world. With more and more businesses eager to create a stronger online presence, you have the benefit of knowing your services will always be in demand. You can also have fun coming up with creative and eye-catching designed for different sites. Plus, of course, you can look forward to earning very good money from doing something you really enjoy.
For some people, working alone and focusing on research is a dream job. Well, if you can do this and you also want to be creative, you can consider working for yourself as a freelance writer. There are many businesses and individuals always on the lookout for a good content writer who works remotely and does a great job. As long as you provide quality content that is well-researched and well written, there is no reason why you cannot make a successful living out of doing this. Of course, you need to have a flair for writing and a passion for it, as this is something that does come across in your content. Again, you can enjoy working from a home office and scheduling your own hours and days to suit you.
Some people love nothing more than crafts, and this is yet another way in which people express their creativity. This can include all sorts of crafts from baking cakes and savory treats through to making jewelry, designing and making greetings cards, making scented candles and more. Some people do all of this as a hobby, but why not turn it into a career and home business? With digital technology at your fingertips, you can various ways to help you sell the items you create. For instance, you can promote your goods on social media sites, or you can set up a website to sell your creations. You can even set up an eBay store or sell on Etsy.
Making Sure You Market Your Business
No matter what type of creative business you decide to go into, you need to ensure you market yourself and your services properly. With the digital technology available today, this is something you can do without spending a fortune or investing huge amounts of time. Instead, you can do it quickly and conveniently with options such as email marketing, social media marketing, and off-line leafletting in the local area.
By making sure you market your services properly, you can gain exposure, and this will enable you to compete more effectively with established rivals that offer the same sorts of services as you. Also, it is well worth starting a blog, as this will help you to gain the trust and confidence of audiences as long as your posts are authoritative, well written, engaging, and accurate. This can also help to boost your website rankings, as search engines like to reward those that add regular, fresh, high-quality content to their sites.
You should also make sure that, no matter what sort of creative business you start, you offer the highest levels of customer service and communication. This can make a big difference when it comes to customer retention, which in turn can have a big impact on your reputation. By developing a loyal client base and a solid reputation within your chosen industry, you can look forward to far greater levels of success in the future.
Enjoy the Chance to Work for Yourself
One of the key things to note about doing this type of work is that it provides you with the perfect opportunity to become your own boss without having to have a load of money to invest upfront. For those who thought they would be stuck working for someone else for the rest of their lives, this is great news. It means that you can work for yourself, set your own income, enjoy total freedom and flexibility, and moreover, make money doing something that you really enjoy.
Sweaty Palms & Weak Responses
Early spring 2018, I walked into the building of a startup accelerator program I had been accepted into. Armed with only confidence and a genius idea, I was eager to start level one. I had no idea of what to expect, but I knew I needed help. Somehow with life's journey of twists and turns, this former successful event planner was now about to blindly walk into the tech industry and tackle on a problem that too many women entrepreneurs had faced.
I sat directly across from the program founders, smiling ear to ear as I explained the then concept for HerHeadquarters. Underneath the table, I rubbed my sweaty palms on my pants, the anxiousness and excitement was getting the best of me. I rambled on and on about the future collaborating app for women entrepreneurs and all the features it would have. They finally stopped me, asking the one question I had never been asked before, "how do you know your target audience even wants this product?".
Taken back by the question, I responded, "I just know". The question was powerful, but my response was weak. While passionate and eager, I was unprepared and naively ready to commit to building a platform when I had no idea if anyone wanted it. They assigned me with the task of validating the need for the platform first. The months to follow were eye-opening and frustrating, but planted seeds for the knowledge that would later build the foundation for HerHeadquarters. I spent months researching and validating through hundreds of surveys, interviews, and focus groups.
I was dedicated to knowing and understanding the needs and challenges of my audience. I knew early on that having a national collaborating app for women entrepreneurs would mean that I'd need to get feedback from women all across the country. I repeatedly put myself on the line by reaching out to strangers, asking them to speak with me. While many took the time to complete a survey and participate in a phone interview, there were some who ignored me, some asked what was in it for them, and a few suggested that I was wasting my time in general. They didn't need another "just for women" platform just because it was trending.
I hadn't expected pushback, specifically from the women I genuinely wanted to serve. I became irritated. Just because HerHeadquarters didn't resonate with them, doesn't mean that another woman wouldn't find value in the platform and love it. I felt frustrated that the very women I was trying to support were the ones telling me to quit. I struggled with not taking things personally.
I hadn't expected pushback, specifically from the women I genuinely wanted to serve.
The Validation, The Neglect, The Data, and The Irony
The more women I talked to, the more the need for my product was validated. The majority of women entrepreneurs in the industries I was targeting did collaborate. An even higher number of women experienced several obstacles in securing those collaborations and yes, they wanted easier access to high quality brand partnerships.
I didn't just want to launch an app. I wanted to change the image of women who collaborated and adjust the narrative of these women. I was excited to introduce a new technology product that would change the way women secured valuable, rewarding products. I couldn't believe that despite that rising number of women-owned businesses launching, there was no tool catered to them allowing them to grow their business even faster. This demographic had been neglected for too long.
I hadn't just validated the need for the future platform, but I gained valuable data that could be used as leverage. Ironically, armed with confidence, a genius idea, and data to support the need for the platform, I felt stuck. The next steps were to begin designing a prototype, I lacked the skillsets to do it myself and the funding to hire someone else to do it.
I Desperately Need You and Your services, but I'm Broke
I found myself having to put myself out there again, allowing myself to be vulnerable and ask for help. I eventually stumbled across Bianca, a talented UX/UI designer. After coming across her profile online and reaching out, we agreed to meet for a happy hour. The question I had been asked months prior by the founders of my accelerator program came up again, "how do you know your target audience even wants this product?".
It was like déjà vu, the sweaty palms under the table reemerged and the ear to ear smile as I talked about HerHeadquarters, only this time, I had data. I proudly showed Bianca my research: the list of women from across the country I talked to that supported that not only was this platform solving a problem they had, but it's a product that they'd use and pay for.
I remember my confidence dropping as my transparency came into the conversation. How do you tell someone "I desperately need you and your services, but I'm broke?". I told her that I was stuck, that I needed to move forward with design, but that I didn't have the money to make it happen. Bianca respected my honesty, loved the vision of HerHeadquarters, but mostly importantly the data sold her. She believed in me, she believed in the product, and knew that it would attract investors.
From Paper to Digital
We reached a payment agreed where Bianca would be paid in full once HerHeadquarters received its first investment deal. The next few months were an all-time high for me. Seeing an idea that once floated around in my head make its way to paper, then transform into a digital prototype is was one of the highlights of this journey. Shortly after, we began user testing, making further adjustments based off of feedback.
The further along HerHeadquarters became, the more traction we made. Women entrepreneurs across the U.S. were signing up for early access to the app, we were catching investor's attention, and securing brand partnerships all before we had a launched product. The closer we got to launching, the scarier it was. People who only had a surface value introduction to HerHeadquarters put us in the same category of other platforms or brands catering to women, even if we were completely unrelated, they just heard "for women". I felt consistent pressure, most of which was self-applied, but I still felt it.
I became obsessed with all things HerHeadquarters. My biggest fear was launching and disappointing my users. With a national target audience, a nonexistent marketing budget, and many misconceptions regarding collaborating, I didn't know how to introduce this new brand in a way that distinctly made it clear who were targeting and who we were different from.
I second guessed myself all the time.
A 'Submit' button has never in life been more intimidating. In May 2019, HerHeadquarters was submitted to the Apple and Google play stores and released to women entrepreneurs in select U.S. cities. We've consistently grown our user base and seen amazing collaborations take place. I've grow and learned valuable lessons about myself personally and as a leader. This experience has taught me to trust my journey, trust my hard work, and always let honesty and integrity lead me. I had to give myself permission to make mistakes and not beat myself up about it.
I learned that a hundred "no's" is better than one "yes" from an unfit partner. The most valuable thing that I've learned is keeping my users first. Their feedback, their challenges, and suggestions are valuable and set the pace for the future of HerHeadquarters, as a product and a company. I consider it an honor to serve and cater to one of the most neglected markets in the industry.