If you were recently laid off or have been out of work for a while, you may be wondering…

“But How Do I Make Money Now?”

What is needed in this case is a business model that:

  • Allows you to earn from skills you already have, or that you can learn very quickly
  • Produces a regular and immediate income

(In other words, just like a regular job!)

It’s immediately apparent that business models like affiliate marketing or opening a retail store do not meet the above criteria as they are time hogs and take a while to pick up momentum. Such models are better suited for people who are gainfully employed, or who have the funding to carry them until the business become profitable.

Perfect examples of business models that can put money in your pocket today – or next week at the latest – are service businesses.

Here are a few ideas:

  • Virtual Assistant – You will find the general Virtual Assistant field rather crowded, so it’s best to find a niche that is crying out for help such as project management, shopping cart management, or auto responder management.
  • Graphic designer – If you’re good with Photoshop (or any other graphics program), website owners are after all sorts of graphics to spice up their web real estate such as buttons, headers, order form and contact form graphics.
  • WordPress Set-up and Customization – If you’re a whiz with WordPress, there is plenty of work out there for you, what with so many people using WordPress and so many ways to customize it.

If you want to test your services before deciding on a particular business model, go the freelance route with sites such as Elance, Guru.com and oDesk.

They’re also a great source of information where you can research:

  • What people are looking for
  • What you should focus on
  • What you need to do to be professional and effective
  • What price-range clients are willing to pay for a particular service
  • How much you can realistically charge for services at your skill level

It can be disheartening to see the low prices that people are willing to work for, but you need to remember that as your experience and reputation grow you will be able to command higher rates. Plenty of people are willing to pay the higher prices if they know they are going to receive quality work in return.

One often-overlooked resource for landing a new project or client is LinkedIn. It is recommended that you become a member of this social network, and create a detailed profile made up of the keywords for which you want people to find you. For instance, if you specialize in graphic design, use keywords such as “web banner” and “web graphics” in your profile.

Sign up for groups related to your skillset that may be populated with clients who are looking for someone with the skills you have. Professional headshots can also give you the edge, along with a professionally written resume targeting potential customers. And be sure to log in daily, as you never know when something is going to pop up.

Excerpted from:

Starting A Business 1-2-3
The premier step-by-step interactive training system
for starting your business with confidence and clarity

Module 1: Research and Development