In one of my previous blog posts, I walked you through how to identify your areas of expertise that will help you come up with business ideas.
Your areas of expertise can be in any topic. Parenting, baking, looking after rescued dogs, life coaching, mountain climbing, organising, gardening, and so on.
When you look at your areas of expertise, it's a good idea to figure out which are the most marketable before you get started. If you're good at something that's of high value to others, you can either teach people how to do it for themselves, or you can do it for them.
Everyone Has A Marketable Expertise
You have at least one. Likely more than one.
Your best marketable expertise is one which:
- You feel passionate about
- Is something you love doing
- Is something you're skilled at doing
- Aligns with your core values
- People are willing to pay for
Brainstorm Paid Products And Services
Once you've identified your areas of expertise, you can start to brainstorm ways to monetise your expertise.
Can you come up with a list of products (whether physical or digital) or services that people will be willing to pay for?
For example, if you have undergone training or learned through self-study how to be a skilled baker, and you know how to make an adorable wedding cake, these are possible services and products you can sell:
- Downloadable recipes for different cakes with ingredients and steps to make the cake
- Online courses to teach cake making (to suite different abilities)
- Bespoke luxury wedding cake design service
If you're an expert in parenting, what can you sell? Digital products, memberships, live events, workshops, small group coaching, one-on-one coaching, and so forth.
List everything you think you can create that might sell to your ideal audience based on your expertise.
Study Your Competition
One way to determine whether your skills are marketable is to look at your competition. The competitors who have been around longer than you already have some insight into what sells and what doesn't. You can learn a lot from checking out the types of products and services they're selling.
What Does Your Target Audience Need?
The most important thing you can do is figuring out what your audience needs. This is a critical step to take if you have an audience already. You can do this via polls, surveys, and even by generating buzz when showing off new product concepts to your audience.
If you don't have an audience yet, you can read discussions and messages in various forums and groups. What questions are they asking? What advice are they seeking? What problems do they face? What's missing in currently available solutions? What do they wish exists that doesn't?
As you move forward, determining which part of your expertise is most marketable, also think about your lifestyle and how much time and effort you want to spend.
For example, in the long run, one-on-one consulting and coaching are going to take much more of your time than a membership or group coaching effort. Membership or group coaching will also allow you to reach more people, but they take more time, money and effort to set up and organise, while it's a easier to get started with one-on-one coaching. It's all about finding what works best for you at a given time.
Be Open To "Crazy" Ideas
Don't limit yourself to traditional ideas, or restrict yourself to your career or academic field. Look at all your skills and identify what areas you feel most passionate about and are easy for you to do, but hard for anyone else.
Perhaps you're someone who could instantly see how to make a complex subject easy to understand. Could you use that insight to help others see things differently?
Often, we don't recognise that we're great at something because it comes so naturally and innately to us. And you may think that a certain skill you have can't be lucrative enough. But there are people out there making money on diverse and unusual topics such as the art of clowning, becoming a pro gamer, stop being lazy, communicate with your animal telepathically, doing philosophy with superheroes, dance floor confidence, and so on.
So, don't dismiss ideas as too crazy or wacky. In fact, something that's a little quirky and different may just be what your market is waiting for!