Buckets-O-Cash


parttime

I was having an interesting discussion with my Father the other day.

We were discussing the topic of offering too much. Being involved in multiple business models. Spreading ourselves thin.

In other words, we have many buckets of revenue.

My father has been in business for over 40 years running his own dealership, sporting goods stores, and other various small business. He knows a thing or two about getting off the ground. He made an excellent point that I think needs to be understood in 2011:

Part time job’s have a new meaning.

We generate income with parts of other jobs or business model’s.

In 2011, especially in the entrepreneur scene, companies are not sticking to just one revenue stream. You don’t set out with a business model to provide just one service. You have to be more agile now to compete, to keep costs down, and to keep growing.

Let’s take a look at building out your part time job or new bucket of revenue.

Buckets-O-Cash

When we started Slocum Studio, we were offering the world to our clients. A typical sales pitch would be lead with a laundry list of services that we offer. From photography to video to web services. Customers were overwhelmed with choices and we were overwhelmed from pitching them.

Since then, we’ve reevaluated our pitch and streamlined it. (Read how in Step 1 of Web Marketing)

But what we haven’t done, is cut out the potential revenue stream. In this day and age, you would be foolish to throw away potential cash.

So what do these new “part time jobs” or revenue streams look like in 2011? Let’s take a look:

Real Part Time Jobs

There’s no better time to be an entrepreneur or freelancer. We have all the tools to create companies, market them, and support them. Social media allows us to reach markets and other collaborators to keep a steady pipeline. Streamlining management and organizational efforts allow you to have your head in other jobs and still be efficient at it.

Do you have a talent that could help another company?

If they’re virtual and have all the tools in place to work remotely – reach out to them and see if you can help. If they don’t, maybe you can consult them in becoming more proficient with new cloud applications.

Even if you’re running your own company, there’s plenty of opportunity to generate a new source of income by reaching out to another business.

Buckets Of Revenue

Multiple streams of revenue is the big fish. It’s also the hardest to manage and you have to be ready to handle it all.

Take a look at your business and see where your potential revenue streams can branch off. Evaluate a process or service that could go full circle.

Where are there other smaller features you could branch off and market on their own? It could be a lead in to the bigger service or vice versa.

One way to evaluate new buckets is by creating a blog. By creating a blog you’re producing inbound marketing to bring clients to your site. Your first bucket could be as a knowledge retailer.

Meaning, you could write an e-book, host webinars, or sell a monthly newsletter based on your experience and processes. If you’re a leader in your space, your knowledge and stories are worth something to someone.

Build your audience and evaluate what’s valuable to them. Research what other products and services compliment your offering. Partner with other companies and provide back end services.

Soon you will be on your way to multiple streams of income.

Use Your Head To Grow

This does not mean create entire new core offerings for your customers.

You should have a cornerstone product that you excel at. Your additional buckets should not be looked at as your core life line. They could dip up and down on the revenue chart, but you should always have your core revenue to define overall success.

You always want to be scaling your business. You want to avoid being the end all be all of the company. (Read Avoid The Steve Jobs Effect.)

Grow vertically and branch out safely on the horizontal offerings. Picture the growth of a small maple tree and not a massive red wood. I think an issue with most of us creative types, we tend to look at the massive big picture and become overwhelmed. Let’s avoid it, focus on the core (what you’re best at) and pick up the side streams as you see fit.

Your Part’s of Part Time Jobs

Ironically enough, as I wrote this blog post, I had a surprise visit from my friend who is a New York Fashionista.

She consults a lot of folks in the NY area in her market of expertise fashion and lifestyle design. She was telling me about the growing number of potential leads reaching out to her in other parts of the country and the world.

We started brainstorming about ideas to make this new bucket work for her. We thought that maybe she should get into video conferencing her clients. Charging a lower rate for an hour or half-hour worth of time because she wouldn’t be traveling.

Another bucket idea came up where should could offer shopping lists she crafted with affiliate or commission kick back from retailers.

So you see, there are potential revenue buckets in all aspects of business.

I’m interested in hearing yours. Please share below what you do for clients and any successful (or not) buckets of revenue you produce.

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8 Comments

  1. Rick Manelius on August 29, 2011 at 8:06 pm

    I agree with the main thrust of your article. Where I’ve stumbled is not fully vetting out the opportunities I’ve chased combined with not having systems to manage the variety of things.¬†

    I’ve learned some lessons and have already begun to streamline as you mention. I too luck forward to buckets of cash ūüôā

    • Matt Medeiros on August 29, 2011 at 10:58 pm

      haha very good Rick!

      What kind of opportunities are you chasing? What types of systems could help you?

      • Rick Manelius on August 29, 2011 at 11:16 pm

        For a while I was trying to go the route of setting up passive streams. Setting up things at a low fee in return of a percentage. That way, it’s less up front cost to the other person but I would get a long term percentage. The problem is if you can’t spend enough time on it to really gain it traction and an audience, it’s actually a harder path than I thought it would be at the onset.

        The other path I took was a technology one. I’m working with some friends and we thought we had a novel video delivery system (in short, drop in a folder and in 10 minutes it’s on a iPhone, web, and boxee). But we again underestimated the development costs to bring it to the next level, and etc.

        I’m realizing now it’s better to do a few things really well and then spin them off versus trying to run with scissors trying to take on way too much too quickly.

        This is not to say one shouldn’t spread out. But I think I wasn’t as targeted and strategic as I could have been.

        Lesson learned. Now I’m planning a bit more and trying to look for ways I can better leverage my skills with others versus trying to do too much myself.

        There is my long answer to your short question ūüôā

        • Matt Medeiros on August 30, 2011 at 2:51 am

          Rick amazing response!

          And thus what I mean about not branching out too far. Oddly enough, I was in your same exact position with that novel idea a few years ago. Further, it was quite the same idea.

          Barriers were the technology and money it would take to press on. My partners were not as dedicated as I was and the company evaporated shortly after seed funding.

          Bluntly, it sucked.

          So you’re right, a few things really well, really works – and it’s a lot more satisfying!

  2. Mark Medeiros on August 31, 2011 at 12:36 am

    I agree with most all of what you’ve said, always wanting to be scaling your business and avoiding being “everything” to all customers. I’ve studied a great amount of material regarding the auto industry, having spent half my life in the field.

    If you look back at the auto industry in the late 1800’s/early 1900’s there were something like 3000 firms that were positioned to build autos, most never entered into production. Just like the internet boom of the 1900’s.

    Wealthy entrepreneurs were looking to invest fortunes made in the copper, iron and lumber industries in these startups.

    Henry Ford’s first two automotive ventures collapsed but he was still able to obtain financing for his third venture. Ford’s failed second venture was renamed Cadillac that went on to be an important component of GM.

    I think we think when we look at people like Ford that he had his shit together at all times but you know what he didn’t as (Eric Ries quoted in his interview in wired “Ideas are overrated”) he just had a process for adapting to situations as they revealed themselves.

    The point is and I agree with both you and Eric on is to be able to change your vision. How many times have we seen things that we thought would never work take off and things that we thought were the best die?

    Its not just one thing, but lots of little things that build a successful product or service.¬† So you need continuously deploy, not looking to “fix it all” at launch but rather, roll out to a smaller audience. Sometimes its a product as a whole or pieces that have the potential to earn money hence “multiple streams of income” and a bucket of cash.

    • Matt Medeiros on August 31, 2011 at 2:30 am

      Always be shipping. Always be selling. Always be innovating. 

  3. Anonymous on August 31, 2011 at 2:26 am

    Thanks for the insightful post!

    I’m looking at this from vantage point of an employee. The world has changed a great deal of late, and so have the rules that go along with it. In fact, I don’t think there are any cleary defined rules of the New Economy. Used to be you got a degree, got a job, and climbed a ladder. Loyalty was spoken of in the present tense.

    Today there is no loyalty from company to employee or from employee to company simply because¬†neither have¬†any to offer. An interviewer used to ask “where do you see yourself in 5 years?”, but today the guy asking that question can’t even answer it for himself!

    Madonna has the right idea. Yes, THAT Madonna. Reinvent yourself. Remain relevant.  Employees need to adopt an entrepreneurial mindset. We all need to be far more proactive.  There is no more cruising altitude, no more traditional ladder to climb. As someone with 22 years experience in the wholesale side of the home furnishings business, I am in full reassessment mode today, and fully expect to be for the remander of my working life. 

    Former GE CEO Jack Welch said “Change before you have to.”¬† I’d like to make this the first rule of the New Economy.

    • Matt Medeiros on August 31, 2011 at 2:29 am

      Peter I love it!¬†Spot on with your thoughts on being proactive and no more traditional way of business. Reinventing yourself is key to today’s success. Maybe then we can guess where we will be in 5 years?

      Thanks for stopping by as always!

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