If you’re reading this blog, then it’s likely you’re interested in starting your own creative business. If that’s you, then YAY! That’s so exciting.
I wrote recently on my blog and on Instagram sharing my struggles with business and how dang hard this thing really is.
To balance that, I’d like to share some tips with you on starting your own creative business.
- Know that it’s so darn incredibly hard. Running Rhema Design Co has been the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my entire life. But, I love it and couldn’t imagine doing anything else.
- Find a sugar daddy. I’m joking — kinda. Seriously though, I’m the sole income provider, and that’s made the pressure to make this work even more intense. If you have a partner that’s willing and able to take more of the financial burden while starting up your business, that’s ideal.
- You’ll need to do 10 things to do the 1 thing you want to do. The one thing I’d like to do is Brand Design. Some of the things I need to do in order to do Brand Design are marketing, social media, running ads, bookkeeping, SEO, blogs, growing an email list, and showing the heck up.
- Know what you’re good at, what you can do yourself, and what you must absolutely outsource. For me, that’s accounting. I would go insane if I had to file my own taxes. In retrospect, I would advise hiring someone to help legally set up the business as well.
- Be kind – there’s enough work for all of us. Whatever you do, I promise you will gain more of a name through graciousness, honestly, and good work.
- Find a community. If you can’t find one, then make one. I moved and started my business within the same week, and I desperately needed a creative community. I found that in the Rising Tide Society, and through fellow creatives on Instagram. Now I’m the leader of my local Rising Tide Chapter, and I started a Slack channels for creatives. We chat throughout our workdays, offer feedback and advice, and video chat once a month. Once I began reaching out to other people, I realized this is something we were all craving.
- Sometimes you have to start off taking on work you don’t love. This pays the bills. But just because you did it doesn’t mean it has to go on your website.
- It’s okay if you’re creative business is not your full time job. Let me say that again.
It is okay if you have another job, and it is okay if you do not have aspirations to one day make your creative business a full time job.
- Work hard to develop your own systems and processes. This is something that will take some time, experience, and unfortunately some trial and error, but make this a focus. Your clients will remember the experience they had with you, and systems and processes are a huge part of that.
- Be careful who you consume educational content from. There’s a lot of educational out there (from myself included) and it’s so easy to get overwhelmed. Don’t over-research this. Find someone you admire, and use their educational resources. By no means should you copy that person or their business model, but carefully curate who you learn from. And, if I’m not one of those people that’s completely fine!