As 2020 winds – or perhaps whimpers – to a close, we are all starting to look toward a promising 2021 (and the opportunity to start a business) with vaccines on the way and a return to a “normal life” – though it would be nice if that new “normal” was enhanced in some way thanks to the lessons of the pandemic. What those lessons might be, I leave to someone far wiser than I to speculate…I just think it would be nice if there was some larger Life Lessons to this horrible time for those of us who have been blessed to survive it, as far too many people have not been blessed to survive – which is heartbreaking.
Time to start your own company?
If 2020 has pushed you to consider starting your own business, a great path to success starts here at the Silicon Valley Business Center, where you can plug your business into a thriving network of successful Silicon Valley businesses, connect with business owners, leverage our facilities and services, tap into our staff, and get it all for very low monthly rates that will free your budget and mind to focus on your startup.
Accounting and Bookkeeping
Are you a licensed CPA or a business accounting software wizard? Your less math-friendly entrepreneurs could use your help in keeping their personal and business finances in order.
As a bookkeeper, you’ll process invoices and payroll, compile expense reports, and more. If you have a CPA license, you can help business owners file taxes, generate balance sheets and other accounting documents, and make your professional recommendations about your client’s bottom line.
If you have the skills to make your own accounting or bookkeeping service happen, then this is one of the best and most lucrative, small business ideas for you.
If you’ve been in the business world for a long time, folks might be clamoring for your knowledge and expertise within your industry. Why not turn all that know-how into a new career as an independent consultant? You can get paid to speak at industry conferences or events, serve on a board of advisors for a fledgling business, or lend your expertise to shape the strategy of an existing business on a contract basis.
Whatever your field of expertise, starting a consulting business is a great way to make a sizable income while working on your own terms.
Most business owners have some idea of how they want to market their companies – but most could use expertise to help them tap into the right channel, the right medium, at the right time to reach the right audience at the right time. Executing that plan can be challenging as well – especially for new business owners with little, or zero, marketing experience.
As an independent marketing professional, you can work with small businesses who don’t have the in-house bandwidth to execute their marketing plans. Write their blogs, firm up their SEO strategy, generate paid ad campaigns (PPC), deploy inbound marketing tactics, and do whatever it takes to get their name in (proverbial) lights.
Real Estate Business (JOIN BRG Realty!)
If property is your passion, there are several ways you can serve other businesses, or even individuals, with your real estate business. You could start your own real estate agency, working with businesses or private citizens to find the office space, house, or apartment that’s right for them.
If you a realtor and would like to join BRG Realty, you’ll enjoy many advantages that will help you thrive in the South Bay real estate market – reach out to Gregg Bunker directly to talk about joining the team.
More and more individuals and companies are hiring freelance event planners to manage the design, logistics, and coordination of pulling off major events. If you love every little detail of coordinating your kid’s birthday or your dad’s retirement party, start offering your Type-A services to partiers in your community or within your personal network. You just need to pull off one great party, to start, and your event-planning business will take off with all those word-of-mouth recommendations.
Are you the person who brings your camera everywhere, or the kid who ran around with a video recorder, taping all of your family events and memories? If so, one of the best small business ideas for you might be video production. With the popularity of video on social media platforms and the internet as a whole, there is certainly a demand for those who can shoot video, cut video, or both. Even if you don’t have prior video experience, like graphic design, there are numerous courses online that can teach you how to cut and edit video using programs like Adobe or Final Cut Pro.
With the demand for video, this is another business idea that you can start at a very low cost, in your own home. Plus, once your videos are out in the world, you’ll have automatic marketing for your production enterprise.
For those who have something to say or important stories to tell, you might consider starting a podcasting business. With the popularity of podcasts from newspapers and other media providers, private individuals have been able to jump on the trend—turning a hobby into a fully-fledged business. Podcasting will require an initial investment in some audio equipment and editing software, but once you get started, you’ll be able to grow as fast as you can talk, produce, and of course market your podcast.
Moreover, if you’re specifically interested in online business ideas, podcasting can be done from one of the Silicon Valley Business Center’s Conference Rooms, and completely online.
Do you have experience with computers and other types of technology? If so, use this knowledge to your advantage and consider starting an IT consulting business. With limited budgets and resources, many small businesses are apt to hire an outside consultant to help assist them with installing, managing, updating, and troubleshooting their technology. As an IT consultant, you’d more than likely be able to offer remote services as well as on-site assistance, giving you freedom and flexibility while working in a field that’s in high demand.
Social Media Management
Social media marketing is a specific marketing specialty that most business owners know they need, but few are capable of doing well. If you’re glued to your phone, Instagram all your meals, and carry out most of your conversations in 280 characters or fewer, you might want to consider cultivating a client base of business owners who need help managing their brand’s social media platforms.
Doing Social Media right is a complex, full time discipline – most businesses could use help doing it right – and tracking results to their Social Media activities through Google Analytics.
Business Planning Service
If you’re the serial business owner type—and have successfully launched and run a few businesses now—you’ve probably crafted a couple of business plans in your time. Writing a business plan is a crucial start to any business, but it’s a process that not all entrepreneurs have down.
One of the best small business ideas for seasoned business owners ready for their next venture is a business planning service. If you know how to see the whole process of writing a business plan through—including business funding plans, market analysis, competitor research, and so on—clients will be lining up for your services.
If you’re a CPA or other enrolled agent, you might consider opening up a service specifically for business taxes. Filing and staying on top of business taxes can be one of the most complicated parts of running a business, so if you have experience in all things tax-related, business owners will be willing to hire you for your services. Plus, unlike individual taxes, many businesses are going to need a tax advisor to support them year-round, meaning you’re services will be in demand through tax season and beyond.
Whether you have a background in public relations, or simply have an extensive network and knowledge in the business space, a PR agency might be the perfect business idea for you. Just like some of these other B2B examples, small businesses often hire outside PR agencies to assist with their public image and presence—including business marketing, events, press releases, outreach, and more. If you have a network of contacts in a specific industry, your services will be even more attractive to businesses in that industry.
If you’re incredibly organized, have a place for everything, and an eye for color-coding, you might consider getting into the professional organizing business. Organizing professionals work with businesses and individuals alike to offer tips and strategies for organization based on their space, as well as get hands-on and help them sort through the clutter. With the time and effort it often takes to clean up a room, house, or office, professional organizing has become a service that people are willing to pay for.
Professional photographers are in high demand for weddings, corporate events, family portraits, and more. Plus, you’re in charge of your client load and schedule, so professional photography is a great way to build a side hustle while working full time elsewhere as you start out – and being a member of the Silicon Valley Business Center will keep your overhead low while giving you a prestigious Silicon Valley business address – and access to our experts and business community.
Rather than redecorating your living room for the 14th time, apply your love of design to an interior decorating business. To start out, leverage your personal network to offer help decorating residential and commercial spaces. You can charge an hourly fee to clients for your work, partner with your favorite furniture stores, luxury mattress stores, or FF&E manufacturers to work on commission or a combination of the two.
If you have a background in design or art, then this business idea is a no-brainer. Even if you don’t have a background in this field, consider taking a course in graphic design—it’s relatively easy to pick up.
Plus, the tools to get this business started are pretty minimal. With just a few handy computer programs—think Adobe, Sketch, or Canva—you could be operating this lucrative business out of your home in weeks. You do need to find clients though, so try networking with small businesses in your community. Everyone could use a well-designed website, online materials, email campaigns, physical print work, and more.
If you have a passion for helping people reach their true potential, becoming a life coach might be the perfect small business idea for you. As a life coach, you’ll work with clients to sort through problems or parts of their lives that they’d like to change and help them create plans to move forward and reach their goals. Although you don’t necessarily need a certification to become a life coach, getting certified can help you as you start out looking for clients.
Once you’ve marketed your services, and your clients can attest to your skills, however, you’ll be well on your way to a successful business.
Ready to Start Your Business at the Silicon Valley Business Center?
Once you’ve chosen your path, come on in and talk with us at the Silicon Valley Business Center. We’ve got flexible workspace solutions from Hot Desks to Internet Cafe memberships, from meeting rooms to private offices – all designed to help you start your business and succeed in your venture.