From Passion To Profit
Updated: Dec 8, 2017
Immigrating to America from a very small country like Jamaica gave me total culture-shock. I quickly realised things are done much differently in America. But opportunities to pursue my passions were endless. My entrepreneurial journey started with just $350 in my pocket. I bought my first ever Nikon camera and a swimsuit, started doing photoshoots, uploaded them online and went on this wild quest to Build My Brand. Afterall, I have an entire family back home that is depending on me, so that $350 had to be fruitful!
Some say not to mix passion and entrepreneurship, but I respectfully disagree. Money can take you only so far, but integrating your passion with your business provides sustainable motivation and the grit to weather the inevitable ups and downs of entrepreneurial endeavors.
Thanks to online platforms, it is now possible for anyone to transform a passion and hobby into a lucrative career. So, I wrote down six things to consider when embarking on this entrepreneurial journey, these are some insights and expertise as a young immigrant fulfilling the American Dream.
1. Find a void - fill it.
We are living through a digital revolution where people around the world can build new businesses in ways that were not possible 10 or 20 years ago. Observe what other businesses are missing and use your business to fill the void. Discover how you can change your industry and why that is necessary. Ask: How can I do it better? Are my competitor/s making a profit?
Great places to sell your products include, Etsy, an artist, crafter or collectors to sell their handmade creations, vintage goods.
With Shopify, a social entrepreneur can turn his store into a national e-commerce phenomenon without knowing a lick of code. On YouTube, a star like Phan can make a living appying her makeup skills to tutorial videos.
For me, social media offers a way to get my work in front of the right people, It allows me to meet interesting, like-minded individuals and locate potential customers.
2.“A goal without a plan is just a wish” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
If you want to succeed, you need to set goals. Without goals you lack focus and direction. Goal setting not only allows you to take control of your life's direction; it also provides you a benchmark for determining whether you are actually succeeding.
To accomplish your goals, however, you need to know how to set them. You can't simply say, "I want" and expect it to happen. Goal setting is a process that starts with careful consideration of what you want to achieve, and ends with a lot of hard work to actually do it.
3. Get comfortable with stepping outside of your comfort zone.
Doing something you’ve never done before can be scary and uncomfortable. The unknown often becomes an an excuse for not moving forward. But let your fear empower, not hinder you. Looking back I can only laugh at how embarassing my first pictures and vlogs were but as the great Ernest Heminway said, "The first draft of anything is shit." so laughing about them is a much easier way to deal with the embarrassment. With that being a habitual mindset that my first attempt to do anything that I am passionaite about will probably be something I will laugh about in the future - and that's ok! Funnily enough the style & fashion I wore in my videos started a buzz and and ultimetly people became interested in the outfits I wore in photoshoots, movies... Suddenly, my closet, AquaShop became a hit amongst people who love fashion.
3. Don't count on passion alone.
While enthusiasm is a great place to start, it's not enough to sustain your business for the long term. Before launching your business, do a reality check and make sure you have the other components needed for success, such as a willingness to work hard and a market for your services or products.
According to beauty, fashion, and lifestyle blogger Mimí Jasmin it is important to be consistent with your work, make your audience want more from your feed, blog posts, vlogs.
4. Be creative with money.
A startup today has more options for financing than just big investors, bank loans or venture capital. First, develop a strategic marketing plan that details exactly how much you need to get started. Then, use social media to gather community support and market your brand before it comes to fruition. Use online crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter, GoFundMe or AngelList.
"Only with money you can get food to your mouth but money doesn’t feed the soul. Only fed soul can create ways to feed the mouth" -Mimí Jasmin.
5. Start today, not tomorrow.
As the old adage says: life is a journey, not a destination: Realize that success will not come instantly. Take Malcolm Gladwell’s advice: Practice your passion for 10,000 hours to become a master, and request feedback and get consultation from mentors to ensure you’re doing it right.
Hours take a while to accumulate. That's why I highly recommend you do something you're passionate about. Start focusing on your passion project now. By defining what’s working (and what’s not), you'll turn your dream project into a business model you can expand on for profitable results.
Have any question? feel free to send me a message.
About Stacii StaySea: Well-rounded International Brand. She is a Actor, Host, Model, accomplished sailor and serial-Entrepreneur. Sta'cii integrates her creativity and drive into multiple businesses, including a Yacht Charter Business, making her the First-Blake Female Yacht Business Owner around the EastCoast.