Here’s what you need to do to turn your talents into money:

  1. Decide what you want to do, and,
  2. Sell your services

Simple? Yes. Easy? Maybe, but there are likely to be many intermediate steps that you will need to contend with, and each might stretch your comfort zone and take you into new territory.

Be flexible. The goal is to use your talents to make money, and what you believe to be a workable plan may need to be adjusted. Guess what? That’s great! This shows that you are responsive to what the market is asking for.

What do you want to do?

When it comes to choosing what you want to do, there are four categories to consider:

  • Do you like doing it?
  • Are you good at it?
  • Do people need it?
  • Are people willing to pay for it?

Pick something that fits into all four categories, that is, you are good at it, you enjoy it, people need it, and people are willing to pay for it.

Incorporate your passions and your talents. Passions are things that you want to do, you enjoy doing, and you would do whether you were being paid for them or not. A passion is something that you might make into a hobby, or do in your spare time for enjoyment.

A talent is something that you are good at in comparison to other people. A rare skill, or something that relatively few people are good at would be considered a talent.

Passions and talents are different in that you can enjoy something without being good at it, and you can be good at something that you don’t particularly enjoy. Ideally you would choose something that you are good at and that you enjoy, or combine elements of activities that are both passions and talents for you in a creative way.

“Start by making a list of everything that you enjoy, and another list of everything that you are good at. Come up with creative ways to combine items from both lists, as well as how you would offer them on the marketplace.

The remaining two components of deciding what you want to do are whether people need it and whether people are willing to pay for it. What need does your service satisfy? A satisfied need is a benefit to your customer, and you are going to need to communicate the benefits of your service in order to sell it. Are you going to be able to find a market niche that is willing to pay for what you are offering? It’s okay if your market niche is small, as long as there are enough customers to support your income goals.

The only way to answer definitively whether someone will pay for your service is to put it on the market. If you’re unsure if it’s possible to make money doing what you want, look around to see if anyone else is doing something similar to what you are considering. If it’s possible for them, it’s possible for you.

How to sell your services

In order to sell your services you are going to need five things:

  • A business model,
  • A market niche,
  • A lead source,
  • A marketing tactic, and,
  • The ability to close sales.

A business model is simply how you intend to make money. What are you going to do, and how are you going to get paid? What does it look like to serve your client? Is your service going to be performed in the presence of your client, or are you going to produce it on your own and present it to the client later? Is one person going to pay for each service performed, or are many? Is it going to be presented to individuals, or many people simultaneously?

What market niche would you like to begin pursuing? What market niche will be the easiest for you to find customers? What market niche is going to have the easiest time paying you? What market niche will you be most comfortable working with? What market niche will you have access to?

How are you going to generate leads? You are going to need a predictable, dependable method of finding people within your market niche who might be interested in your service. Where are you going to find them? Is there a directory? Can you get a list?

You need a constant, reliable stream of qualified prospects who want what you have to offer and are able to pay. Choose a marketing tactic to present your marketing message to your leads so you can find out if they are interested. When your prospects contact you, or you contact them, you need to be able to sell your service. Describe your service and emphasize the benefits. Make them an offer that they can say yes or no to. If they say yes, congratulations! You’ve closed the sale and you can begin delivering your service.

Final thoughts

Choose one service, one business model, one market niche, one lead source, and one marketing tactic at a time until you find a way to generate qualified prospects. If you need to learn how to close sales, you can start by offering your services for free or at your own cost. Once you are confident in your ability to sell your services, choose an introductory rate that people will have to say yes to. Fill your schedule, and then continue marketing yourself. As demand for your limited availability increases you can raise your rate over time to meet your income goal.

Good luck!! Making money doing something you love is a terrific feeling. Doing what you want with your time is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself.

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