WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO TURN YOUR IDEAS INTO A VIABLE BUSINESS BEYOND TPT?
Oh, I know you have ideas…
Wanna know how I can be so sure?
Because you’re a teacher! It’s in your DNA, even if you don’t know it.
Coming up with ideas is like a walk in the park for you. You’re used to having to get so creative in thinking of 100 different ways to help your students. But not only do you have to deliver content to them, you have to get them to enjoy receiving it and learn it too.
That’s no small feat. So that’s how I know ideas are probably not your problem. (You’ll get to see what you have floating around up there when you try out my 3 step system to getting a teacherpreneur business off the ground, later on in this article.)
Once you’re clear on the fact that you’re ready to extend your teacherpreneur business beyond TpT, one barrier you can face is knowing which of these ideas are most viable to turn into business plans, beyond selling resources on TeachersPayTeachers. Let’s break it down to help you choose.
NOT ALL YOUR BUSINESS IDEAS WILL WORK AS YOU HAD HOPED, AND THAT'S OK!
I mean, think back to some of your lessons you’ve taught…
I’m sure we can all recall a STINKER that was so beautiful on paper and in our head, but in reality it tanked. Hard. It was awful. You’re still haunted by it, apparently… Yeh, same.
The point is, it’s just one lesson. It doesn’t make you a bad teacher. You know you’ll come up with other ones that will work so meh, no biggie right?
Well it’s the same in business! Just because one idea doesn’t work, it doesn’t mean you have to pack it all in and that this life isn’t for you. Dust yourself off and try something else. That’s half the fun anyway!
So how can you evaluate which ideas have more potential than others? Keep reading to find out!
A BASIC SYSTEM IS ALL YOU NEED TO TELL IF YOUR TEACHERPRENEUR BUSINESS IDEA IS SCALABLE:
Here’s my 3 step plan to getting a teacherpreneur business idea off the ground:
Step 1: brain dump all the things in your head.
The good, the bad, the terrible – everything! Get it allll out. It’s also ok if this list is something you add to over time, rather than all at once. Sometimes the most creative ideas come out in the shower, while walking the dog, driving around doing errands, that pinnacle moment right before you fall asleep… [you fill in the blank]. Give yourself time to think of all sorts of ideas.
Step 2: start filtering out the bad, terrible and ugly ones. Don’t completely delete them though, as you never know what ideas could stem from them some day! For now, just highlight those ideas that stand out to you as something that sounds exciting and new.
Step 3: test drive an idea. This is where you are going to choose one to move forward with.
Here’s the important thing to note though: you’re only test driving.
Don’t get emotionally attached to any idea.
This idea itself is not the be all end all. It’s OK if it doesn’t end up going anywhere. Just like that crappy lesson you were thinking about earlier – it doesn’t matter that it didn’t work out, you came up with hundreds, if not thousands of better once since then and everything worked out just fine!
HOW DO YOU TEST DRIVE YOUR TEACHERPRENEUR IDEA?
Alright, so you’ve chosen an idea you want to test drive, what next?
Start planning out the facets of your business. Here are just some questions you could ask yourself:
- What is it exactly that you are going to do for people?
- Which people? Who are your target audience?
- How will they benefit from what you have to offer?
- How are you going to provide value to them, both free and paid?
As soon as you have a plan, test it out. Start putting out some content for them and see if you can build an audience. Do people like it? Do they need it? Are they benefiting from it?
This step might take some time or it might immediately take off – there’s no right or wrong process, but keep your ear to the ground to see if people are valuing what you have to offer.
Another crucial thing to remember when testing out your business idea, is to conserve your money. This is an important one as you’re not sure this idea is going to go anywhere yet. The last thing you want to do is invest a significant amount of money into it only for it to tank and all be a complete waste.
So what’s the best way to conserve money? That’s right, DIY baby!
Do things yourself at first, it will be immensely cheaper and you’ll learn some extremely valuable skills that will undoubtedly help you with future endeavours!
I know had I not pushed myself to learn website design early on in my teacherpreneur journey, I would not be where I am today with 5 other websites on the go!
As you soon as you notice your business gaining some traction, by all means you can develop things and take them further by investing more into the business if you wish to. But during the testing phase, I encourage you to save as much money as you can.
Also, don’t be afraid to try things and “fail”. I put “fail” in quotation marks as I don’t believe in the word in it’s final terms. Failure is only failure if you quit or don’t learn anything from it, but let me tell you – there’s always a lesson to learn that you can use to your advantage if you look hard enough!
When looking for traction in your business, it’s important to note that nothing goes up perfectly over time. There are always pull backs in a graph – no graph goes straight up. Spend time building your base, then sit back and observe how its going.
By all means, let go if you need to. There’s no shame in that. It’s better to let go now before you spend all your time and money on something that isn’t working.
If it is working however, keep taking it forward and start working on a fool proof system to keep it going.
HOW TO DEVELOP A FOOL PROOF SYSTEM FOR SCALING YOUR TEACHERPRENEUR BUSINESS?
Once you notice your teacherpreneur business gaining some traction, it’s paramount that you get a system in place. This has to be done before you even consider delegating any tasks to anyone else.
A system is something that helps remove the thinking process of a task so you can do it much faster and that so someone else can take over from you someday, if that’s what you want. Your system could look like checklist, spreadsheet or template; anything that you can follow to improve your workflow.
Say you want to start creating content for your new business, this could be blog articles, videos, podcasts, social media posts etc. How would you go about planning and creating those? There are so many steps involved in each of those, as you know, so shave off some time wasting and get a system in place to speed things up!
I would like to share with you my unique content creation planning system that I use when creating content. I like to work in batches to speed up the process and this spreadsheet will show you how to do that if you’re interested!
Simply click the button below to download this content creation planner for free and start test driving your new business idea today:
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How do you like to work – are you a batcher or do you have a different system? Let me know in the comments!