More Americans are taking the leap into business. According to a recent analysis from the U.S. Bureau of Statistics, the number of applications for new businesses is at a 13 year high. In fact, applications for employer IDs increased by 12 percent up to mid-September, the largest year on year increase since 2007. At the same time, the country continues to experience a digital revolution. Technological use has rapidly increased, and opportunities for a career in your geeky passion have exploded, including starting your own business. A great example: gaming. In 2020 alone, gaming sales increased by 37 percent to $3.3. Billion, proving itself to be both a popular pastime and lucrative business idea. Whether you have an idea for the perfect gaming setup or want to provide the perfect gaming subscriptions that the market is missing, turning your passion into a business can be the perfect answer to the ultimate question: How do I do what I love and get paid for it?
Find Your Target Market
Every successful business begins with the identification of the right target market. Even if you have a great business idea or product, failing to identify the right target market puts you at risk of missing the mark where the appeal would be the highest – i.e. the demographics that would receive your product the best. For gaming businesses, you can utilize target audience research using some of your known competitors. Focus on demographic markers like the income, age, and gaming genre of your intended customers. Are you aiming to attract supporters of retro games or modern gaming tech releases?
Take Steps To Protect Your Idea And Your Business
Like any other business owner, taking steps to protect your business should be done before you even open your doors (or website). As a business owner, you will be putting a lot of effort and financial resources into building your business and brand. Leaving it vulnerable to risks like copyright or theft means you are leaving yourself open to potential losses, which can jeopardize your business’ future.
Start with securing the right insurance policies for your startup. As a guide, these should include property, employee, and general liability insurance policies. Many businesses are also choosing to add cyber-insurance to their insurance policies package as the threats against hacks and fraud continue to increase. In fact, the 2019 Global State Of Cybersecurity Report showed that 76 percent of small and medium-sized businesses have experienced a cyber attack in the last 12 months. Also, if you plan on employing workers, you will need to check the state requirements on insurance coverage for employers. For instance, workers comp is mandated in every U.S. state besides Texas. As a general rule, business owners are required to secure workers comp insurance once they add an employee who is not an owner.
Line Up Your Resources
Finally, assess your readiness to be a business owner. Do you have the finances to open your own business? Small business owners often finance their ventures using savings, business loans, or credit cards. If you plan on applying for external financing, be sure to check your credit standing in the months of planning. Most lenders will consider a sole trader’s personal credit rating when they are applying for a business loan. This is particularly applicable if the business is new and hasn’t established its own credit profile yet.
You may also want to assess your other resources like business premises and business website. Even if you plan on opening a brick and mortar store, having an online presence is still overwhelmingly important for businesses. For a gaming business, it is a uniquely important platform to connect with fellow gamers and potential customers.
Turning your geeky passion like gaming into a viable business can be incredibly enjoyable and rewarding – but it still requires a lot of hard work and commitment. The good news is, once you have got the right safeguards in place, you stand a real chance of doing what you love and loving what you do.