Start A Business, Do What You Love, Maximize Your Impact – with a startup budget under $500
“Do what you love and never work another day in your life”. If you like that quote, this might be the most important article you ever read.
A lot of people (maybe you) have frustrating jobs, earn a small income and have no impact.
In the meantime, millions of other people have discovered a way to earn a bigger income, do what they love and have a positive impact. This article will show you how to do it.
What is ‘Impact Entrepreneurship’? It’s term I invented to describe any business whose purpose is to generate revenue while also making the world a better place.
How can you start with less than $500? I’m not just saying that you CAN start with a low budget, I’m saying that you SHOULD start with a low budget even if you have more to spend.
Why? It’s highly unlikely that your first business idea, or the strategy for executing on the idea, will work. Putting a lot of money into one idea with one strategy is very dependent on luck.
There’s a better way. A strategy that involves spending less time and less money to discover what your target customers really want.
Before diving in, you’re probably thinking – why listen to me?
This is the one-paragraph summary. My TEDx talk about passion has more than 1 million views. I’m the founder of World Reconciliation Day with Nelson Mandela and the business I started with nothing had grown big enough to donate US$1 Million to Nelson Mandela’s charity. I’ve raised more than $100 Million for businesses where I was the CEO and controlling shareholder. I’m the founder of ‘I Imagine’, a platform for people that want to maximize their impact.
Step 1: The Best Business For You
The first step is to use the ‘Theory Of Pii’ identify a new business idea (or you use it to test your existing business idea).
‘Pii’ stands for passion, income and impact. Your business should meet all three criteria.
Passion: Passion is not just a hobby. Think of it as the “things you feel strongly about”.
You are unique and you have your own unique perspective. The combination of your unique perspective and your ‘instinctive’ understanding of something you’re passionate about is your competitive advantage.
The opposite is also true. How can you expect to compete against people that are passionate about a specific niche and want to work on it all day and night if you don’t feel the same way?
They have more knowledge on day one, they love to add to that knowledge and they have an instinctive understanding of what the customer wants because they are one of them.
Income: The reality is that some passions cannot be the basis of a financially viable business.
Impact: How can the thing your passion about make someone else’s life better – or make the world better?
How to implement the Theory Of Pii in practice: Create a list of a few things you’re passionate about, another list of things you can to generate income, and a third list of things you can do that will have a positive impact. Look for the common thread between all three and find the optimal combination.
Ideally, all three should be one thing e.g. You decide to create a yoga studio because you’re passionate about yoga, you can generate income by selling yoga lessons and you believe that yoga has a positive impact on your customers.
If you are doing work that you love AND you’re generating a big income AND you feel like you have purpose – then there’s nothing holding you back.
The main reason for people quitting a business idea is that they are missing one or more of these three.
This is the foundation of your business – and your day to day life. It’s a big deal. Take a small amount of time to think through it carefully.
Step 2: Launch And Test Concurrently
Create a small blog, YouTube channel, podcast or social media group about the niche you selected in step 1 and start creating some content, gathering feedback and building an audience.
You should have something intelligent, useful or interesting to say about your topic. What are people getting wrong? What’s a better way to do things? What are the misconceptions that need to be addressed?
To specific, what are your ideas about how to make things better?
This is an opportunity for you to start a discussion, test your knowledge, establish some authority, and see what your target market really thinks.
Do they agree that the problem you’re trying to fix is important? If yes, do they think that your ideas will work? If they do, how much are they prepared to pay for it?
The decision about whether to do this through a blog, YouTube channel, podcast or social media group depends on your personal preferences and the preferences of your target market.
If you like to write, create a blog. If you like to make videos, create a YouTube channel. If you like to talk (and don’t want to be on camera) create a podcast. If you want to manage a community, create a social media group.
The importance of building an audience on one or more of these platforms cannot be underestimated. Take a look at this incredible list of benefits:
- You will establish authority
- You can validate ideas, concepts, and assumptions
- A percentage of the audience will become customers
- It makes it easier to attract co-founders
- It makes it easier to establish partnerships
- It makes it easier to raise money
- You can even monetize it passively or actively in multiple ways (see below)
Step 3: Decide How To Monetize
You can monetize your audience in multiple ways. This is the list in order of most passive to most active:
- Automated Ad revenue
- Afiliate revenue
- Online courses
- Physical products
Now for the punch line…
If you have produced some solid content and built an audience, you can potentially grow this into a simple multi-million dollar business without even building the big, fancy new thing that you were originally planning to build.
Or, you can use this revenue to ‘bootstrap’ your business and bypass raising money.
How To Get Started
There are millions of people around the world that have already something similar to the plan I outlined above.
Just remember that the Theory Of Pii is the most important part. If you get this wrong you will fail. If you get it right, you will happily learn whatever you need to learn and overcome any challenge.
If you want more “step by step” guidance, you can get it from my course. Why am I selling a course?
I’ve created a social network called ‘I Imagine’. It’s a platform for people that want to maximize their impact and I want it to become the primary destination for impact entrepreneurs, nonprofits, and businesses that want to make the world a better place.
I want to help people to start businesses, nonprofits, and causes that have a positive impact and use the “I Imagine” platform to grow.
Almost everything on ‘I Imagine’ is free. This is a brief list of other things you can do on ‘I Imagine’:
- Create a vision board where you can manage your goals
- Grow your blog, YouTube channel, podcast, or social media group by partnering with other impact entrepreneurs that have similar (but not competing) audiences and agreeing to cross-promote each other. This is an extremely effective and free strategy but finding partners that will agree to work with you is hard. When you use ‘I Imagine’, you just need to check a few boxes and the algorithm will match you up with people that want to work with you.
- You can also use this innovative “social matching” mechanism to connect with like-minded people, find co-founders, and find funders. You can also find opportunities for interviews on blogs, YouTube channels, and podcasts. All without any cold contacting!
- Create “Ideas listings’ where you can crowdsource ideas to solve any problem. People can contribute their own ideas or vote and comment on ideas from other people. The best ideas bubble to the top.
- Create and sign petitions
- Support causes that matter to you
But the starting point is simple – create some content about the thing you feel strongly about. Gather feedback. Adjust. Monetize. Grow. That’s it!
Your worst-case scenario is that you will spend time doing work you love and create something that you’re proud of that has a positive impact.
Your best case scenario is that it grows into a multi million dollar business that has a massive impact.
The title of this article is “How To Start A Business, Do What Your Love & Maximize Your Impact”. It’s real. I’m doing it. And you can do it too.
The course normally costs $497 but you can get a $300 discount and get access for $197 with this coupon: FB300.
This is what you need to do: Create a free account on ‘I Imagine’, click on My Business. Use this coupon to get $300 off: FB300.