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Some of you just want to pay your bills while others want to make a lifestyle business—that’s where you have a business that makes enough to support you and enable you to do basically about whatever you want.
Others of you want to create a world-changing business or a disruption business—something that’s going to change the world or really impact people at scale. Maybe you want to build the next billion dollar company.
All of these are great aspirations, but if you really just want to build something small, you can build a business in almost any niche to around the million dollar mark with just yourself and maybe a few other people helping.
Maybe your goal is to build a great workplace, somewhere with an awesome culture, where people are given the recourses to pursue what they want to do. Or, maybe you give them paid sabbaticals every seven weeks so that they can do whatever they want. Maybe you want to build a huge company that is able to employ hundreds or even tens of thousands of people.
If you are dreaming of something really big, something on a huge scale, I’m not here to tell you you can’t build the next billion dollar business. I honestly believe in you, I believe that you can, but:
You need to understand the size of your market, because not every market is a billion dollar market.
You need to understand the limitation of your market size. If you have really big revenue or business goals, you have to understand the size of your market. Not every market is big enough. Not every market can support the goals that you have, so you have to research your market. Some questions you want to ask are:
- Is there another business doing what I want to do?
- Is there another business making what I want to make?
If there’s no other businesses, you may not be in a market that’s big enough.
Competition is a good thing.
If you’ve found that you’ve niched yourself into a corner that’s too small for your revenue or business goals, you may want to take a step back or take a step adjacently, because then you can expand what you’re about.
Like I talked about a couple of episodes ago, you may think you’re in the hammer business, but after some reflection you may find that you’re in the home craftsmanship business. This opens up a lot more. There’s a lot more potential there. You can create all kinds of tools. It’s not just about hammers, it’s about empowering a craftsman and that’s a really big market.
I did something similar where I was originally in the hand lettering market. I taught lettering artists how to make a living as a hand lettering artist. I taught them how to work with clients, how to price their work, how to use contracts, and licensing.
While I did make a few hundred thousand dollars doing that, there is a limit on that market, and I was just focusing on lettering. I realized that lettering artists were simply the first people I helped. What I’m really passionate about is helping people do work that fulfills them and be able to be sustained by it.
I’m interested in teaching business and entrepreneurship, so lettering artists were the first people that I helped, but what I’m about isn’t limited to that specific market.
When I took a step back to realize I’m in the business of helping entrepreneurs grow and start their own businesses, I realized there’s tons around that that we can teach such as podcasting, creating courses, producing video, learning how to write, and using writing to grow your business, all of which lead to creating the Community and a podcast network.
Now, we have essentially an entrepreneurial learning community, and that’s a much bigger market.
Again, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to build a lifestyle business or something that just supports you personally, but if you have really big goals and you want to build the next world-changing company or you want to build a billion dollar business, you have to inherently understand the limitations of your market. You need to know your market size.
If you’ve gone too specific for your super large goals, you may want to take just a step back, or maybe a step to the side—an adjacent step—to reevaluate and expand.