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Building a Profitable Home Based Business
My hometown of Bedford, NY has a population of 17,335 people. The town is quaint, you can even describe it as charming, and in small towns in the North East no chain stores are allowed by ordinance. In Bedford, there are two very small town centers about a mile apart, one with a small parking lot and about 10 storefronts, and another with no parking lot and about a dozen storefronts; the stores in the former were built about 30 years ago, and in the latter they have been meticulously maintained since the early 1900s. Well known residents of this town include Martha Stewart, Richard Gere, Glenn Close, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, as well a wide assortment of lawyers, bankers and at least one blogger :)!
There is one dry cleaner in this town, and with only 22 store fronts no room for another. His business aligns perfectly with the town population, most people on the list above would regularly use a dry-cleaner, so it’s not surprising that his store is always busy. It certainly helps that the owner is a very nice gentleman, so his customers love him: he runs a good operation, maintains what I would consider to be “medium,” hours and he knows his customers by name.
Is he wealthy, you bet.
You say, “Winter that’s all nice but what does that have to do with working from home?!?” To cut to the chase then before I lose you, he has what you need if you want to make outsized profits in your home-based business, a personal monopoly.
Personal monopolies come about if three key factors align properly.
1) You have something that people want or need;
2) You are the only one that is currently doing it within a protected customer base;
3) You have a way to “lock-out” the competition.
Having Something that People Want or Need
Let’s be honest, finding a product that people want or need is not that difficult. If you go online right now, you can find hundreds of thousands of them. Go to Google and type in “products people need,” then try “services people need.” That will narrow the field to several thousand – then pick one that you’re good at or want to become good at and you’re ready to move on. It’s point number two that is tricky.
The Only One Doing It
Here is the difficult part – if you make money in a business, others will ALWAYS try to jump in. Think about Burger King and McDonalds, Coke and Pepsi, Microsoft vs Apple – you get the point. So, you have a choice: look around and see if there is something obviously missing in your community or city that is successful and then replicate it, hoping that no one notices (which is possible – the dry cleaner would be mad at me right now!) or, create something that is irreplicable. The is first the dry cleaner analogy, the second is what I call the “ClickBank.com” analogy.
ClickBank.com is a service for those that have an e-product that they sell online – an eBook, a how to course etc. They use ClickBank.com to get their product into the hands of buyers by advertising on websites such as this. Many products are unique and quite good. Almost all of the thousands of product developers (i.e. the writer of the book or how to course) have a natural monopoly. A great example is “Home Made Energy.” The author of this course figured out how to sell a e-course to teach people to make their own solar panels. An entire home’s worth of solar electricity for about $200 worth of material. Is it new technology, no. Is it particularly difficult, no. Does what he sells really work, yes. Is it a branded name “Home Made Energy,” Ohhhhh yes. And is the brand his monopoly. Yes.
The key to a personal monopoly is to take something that someone has already developed and make it your own by putting a brand on it. The competition won’t know what hit them, and when they do it will be too late! It is then that you will have achieved point number three above – you will have locked them out.
In our next post we’ll explore the lifestyle choice that you want with your home based business. Do you want to be able to run it from a laptop in-between meditation sessions at a Tibetan mountaintop monastery or do you want to be front and center in the thick of the action. I’ll call this next one Designing Your Home Based Business Around YOUR Lifestyle.
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Until Next Time,