If I've Got a Side Business, When Should I Start Investing in Branding?
I'm back this week diving into more common questions I get around branding. Today, I'm sharing a brand-new episode of "Skip to Action TV" perfect for you if you've got a side business (or you're thinking of starting one!) -
"If I've Got a Side Business: When Should I Start Investing in Branding?"
When is the right time to invest in branding for my side business?
You know, I'm working full-time, when should I invest in branding if what I'm doing is only "on the side?"
And I like this question a lot because I think I kind of have an unorthodox answer to that. I actually think it's the perfect time to invest in branding yourself. It's a time when you're sheltered ideally, based on your financial situation. But if you have a salary coming in, and maybe you have a spouse or a partner that can help manage some of the funds, you may have more financial freedom than you do if you're running your business full-time.
So, I would recommend in that case, if you do have the financial opportunity versus when you go full-time, to take the opportunity before you go full-time to invest in branding your business when it's still a side-business. Because you can partner with the right person, so that you can set out on that full-time journey and be set up for success from the very beginning, which is an ideal state but not something everyone can afford to invest in.
Having professional branding as soon as possible is going to help you go farther, faster as you grow your business.
The thing is that, if you can when you go out and you really start to grow a business, if you can do that in a professional way, if you have creative business assets that are done by a professional, that are not only professional for you but tell your story, that are authentic, that resonate with other people, that' going to help you go farther, faster. And that's what you are going to want to do, if you want to transition from your side business to your full-time job.
So investing in that now, when you still have the money to do that, and to get going, you're going to launch faster and be able to recoup that investment much more quickly and to be set up for success in the very beginning. And I think that that is so valuable because at the very beginning, when you're starting to get the word out, when it's still a side business, that's the time that you really can benefit from having more credibility. And that's something that a professionally designed brand and knowing the words to say to describe your business is going to do for you, that a lot of people don't have, quite frankly.
Professional branding is going to communicate your credibility, value, and competitive edge out of the gate. It'll make it easier for you to go full-time.
It's the thing that instantly communicates that you are professional, that you are an expert in what you're trying to do or trying to sell or offer to others. It's not to be overlooked or underestimated, it's a great opportunity for you so that if you can afford to invest in it, that to me, is the perfect time to do it, when it's still a side business. When you could benefit from working with someone who not only does the design, not only does the writing, but then sees the strategy and can help mentor and guide you so that you can launch full-time. That you can get that, know-how to use these assets to grow yourself into the next chapter. Which you hopefully, I woul assume, maybe want to take full-time.
It can't be underestimated how valuable the credibility is, the confidence that you get out of it, and honestly the competitive edge. You could be beating out people have been in business for a very long time, but that have very dated materials, things that don't look as professional or expertise. That's the world we live in now, is that professional and authentic brands will beat others every single time. Because we're all like goldfish, we all take 4-5 seconds to look at something to go yes or no. And so you want to give everybody that opportunity, if you can do so and as soon as you can do so, and as soon as you can invest in that.
You might find, especially if you start asking questions, that the investment is less than you think, and it takes less time than you think, and it really will help you so much more. I've talked to people that I've worked with who said, I thought I was getting marketing but what I got was counseling. So, what they meant by that was, they went on to say, it was about soul searching, it's about developing what your goals are for your business, and that's so important. And in that process, getting the tools, not only that work for now, not just the logo and the website that work for now, but the logo and website that you can grow with for years to come, that have the vision for you, that you can step into. It's like setting your shoes out in the morning and putting your foot in. It's setting you up for future success.
So, all that to say, that if you're on the fence about it, especially thinking about it - “Oh well the business isn't making money yet, so I can't put money into it.” - that's not the way to think about it. It's the way you set yourself up so that you can start bridging that gap and leverage the other opportunities you may have being in a full-time job.
So, good luck to you and let me know how it goes, because I'm certainly cheering you on!
- "Over Invest in Your Brand as Much as You Can Possibly Afford: Advice for Early Stage Start-ups" (Forbes)
- "7 Ways to Invest in Your Brand and Company" (The Everygirl)
- "Why Investing in Brands Remains Crucial" (Wall Street Journal)