There is a difference!
Neither is right or wrong, but your business results will suffer until you recognize this difference and work the goal into your plan. Let’s use an off-line example to help you fully understand the concept …
Making A Quick Buck
Suppose you are a student or school teacher with a summer hiatus. Or you were laid off and need to fill in some cash to make ends meet until a job opens up in your profession. Let’s say a friend the landscape designer introduces you to the rewards of landscaping during the nice weather and needs good installers.
You just want to pay for your next year’s tuition, or help with the rent and household expenses. So you head to Home Depot, buy a few tools, install a few yards under the guidance of your friend, collect your fees and head to the next job. Hard work, but you make good money.
Now let’s suppose you realize how much you love breathing the fresh air, feeling the sunshine or the rain. Connecting with the earth energy and elements revitalizes your soul and the satisfaction of a transforming a yard with beautiful plants cannot be measured in words. Creating a beautiful landscape is your calling and you decide to make this your business and sole source of income.
But there are challenges. Landscape installation and thus your income is seasonal. Plus your friend just moved across the country, so you don’t have a steady source of clients. Are the easy money and your dream fading away?
Building A Business
Not if you employ strategies to create, build and sustain a business in the long run, versus the short-term objective of trading the least hours for the most dollars. Wise investment of time, energy and money early on will pay off in the long run.
To create a business that will grow and prosper, you may need upfront seed money. You’ll need to reinvest some of your profits. The needs of each business are different, but they all require a solid support team that may include teachers, accountants, attorneys, suppliers, employees, sub-contractors, technical advisers, and so forth.
You must take a long-range view past the next client and well into the coming weeks, months and years. A well-researched business plan is vital and the best starting place. In future posts, we’ll look into the elements of a business plan, but for now, start with research into every aspect of your market.
At the most basic level you must acquire all your financial facts including your cost of equipment, materials, delivery, overhead, employees or sub-contractors. Identify competitive rates for your service or product and a realistic estimate of your sales potential. Create a long-term plan for acquiring new business and re-selling your existing customers.
Promote Or Perish
You must learn cost effective methods to promote your business, then invest in advertising and promotions. If you’re just looking to make a quick buck, maybe all you need is a classified ad in the local newspaper, or a good Google Adwords campaign and a simple website if you’re selling online. To build a business, you may employ these tools and many other more complex, self-sustaining promotional strategies such as online or offline community involvement.
Business owners can never afford to stop learning. This has always been true, but even more so with the fast pace of changing technology, which affects nearly every business in the modern world in one way or another. If you just want to make money, perhaps all you need is to educate yourself enough to make that single hit before you move on.
Create Multiple Streams Of Income
Business builders will eventually want to create multiple streams of income, once their business is sound. This strategy will usually involve the internet, even if your core business is offline.
Identify Your Money & Business Goal
You can see that the first step is to identify whether you want to simply make some short-term money, or invest in your future by building a long-term solid business.
Only then can you target the appropriate level of time, energy and money in choosing the right product or service and implement the most effective strategies to sell them. This applies as much or more to internet marketing as to the bricks-and-mortar world.
Time is too short to waste a precious moment, so start your business right!