It’s been over a year since I walked away from industry and government contracts to start my own small business. Some of that time has been awesome. I love being the master of my own time. However, I don’t love being broke. I also don’t love the fact that there is very little chance that I’ll ever make money doing what I had hoped to monetize. At this point, I’m pretty sure that the idea I had hoped to turn into income is never going to amount to much more than a hobby.
What did I do wrong? Well, there are many things that come to mind:
- I selected a market segment occupied by a large number of offerings that are nominally free to end users by way of YouTube and other similar venues.
- I selected a market segment where the target audience is notoriously cost conscious (homeschool families).
- I over-estimated the quantity of work I would be able to accomplish in the last year.
- I committed to far too many things outside of the business that took large amounts of time and energy. I seem unable to really focus my attention on one thing. To make this endeavor work, I’d need to turn off everything else. I can’t do that.
- I underestimated the impact of inflation on the burn rate for my savings.
- I underestimated the investment required to get beyond a baseline website.
- I focused too much time on a product (my novel) that I knew was doomed to fail and was doomed to offer no more than a minuscule return on investment.
- I lost interest in the products when they switched from a hobby into a requirement.
- I over estimated myself.
- I didn’t fully commit to success.
- I gave up.