I would like to remind my readers that this blog is geared toward teens and young adults (so please don’t be offended by my admonition to look up a word in the dictionary – that’s meant for my young readers). The information here is just a summary, intended to guide them toward thinking about what they want their online business to look like/be about. I invite you to post any ideas or suggestions you have that would add to the topic and be a good addition in the upcoming book I’m writing using these blog posts.
In part 1 of this topic we looked at service oriented businesses. In part 2 of this topic we will consider just a few examples of internet businesses and the products or services you can offer online.
Online Training. I heard about one man who taught piano and wanted to move to an island in the Caribbean. He decided to take his business to the internet in order to make the move. He purchased a video camera for his computer and worked with students via Skype (a free online video conferencing tool). He was able to demonstrate and to observe the student playing the keys. He eventually added pre-made video lessons which he turned into DVDs and MP3s and built a million dollar business.
Get any ideas from this story? Many classrooms use video conferencing and online videos as an adjunct training (if you don’t know this word look it up in the dictionary as my father used to tell me).
Online videos are easy to make and are a great training tool. You can do live demonstrations, embed video on your website, post them on your own YouTube account or create DVDs for sale. Most computers come with built in cameras now. If you have an older computer, there are very inexpensive cameras you can buy. I got a Microsoft camera for my desktop for only $12.
As you become experienced, you may want to write a book about your topic which then becomes one of your products. You may develop a training program that you can teach using webinars or have teleseminars or telesummits and teach classes over the phone. The tools to do these things are free.
Be a Rock Star or a Comic. Using YouTube you can create videos of your performances, post them on YouTube then give everyone the link to your video and ask them to share it. If you’re good, or what you do is interesting, you might hit it big. Just look at Justin Bieber and Gangnam Style. These people posted on YouTube, their performances caught some eyes and they went viral and became overnight successes. Both have ended up on Dancing With The Stars and Gangnam style is being danced all over the world. It’s possible with a little talent, some creativity and a lot of luck.
Be a Talking Head or a DJ. You too can have your own radio program on blogtalkradio.com. You just download the software and start talking. You can invite other people who are in the same niche as you to interview, interview customers, just talk about whatever interests you for an hour, review movies and books, play music. You can record it and use it as a demo video, send it out to stations you might want to have a radio show for, or use it as a demo tape to get DJ gigs.
Online Retail Store. You can open a storefront online using a website. You can either develop your own or buy into an already existing business where they provide the website and all the tools you need; you only need to do the marketing and bring people to your site. This is known as a turnkey business (everything is done for you, you just need to market your site). Post photos and information about the product you are selling, set up a paypal account, use a WordPress plugin that is very inexpensive to purchase that becomes your Estore and tracks your orders, sends out invoices, notifies you via email about sales and keeps track of the money.
I use the WordPress estore and their affiliate plugin. You can get more information about that here. In the interest of transparency, I am an affiliate for this product (that means I am part of their sales force and earn a commission if you purchase this product using my link).
There are many other options for services or products you can provide at your website or other online business. Can you think of any?
Do you have a business model that isn’t mentioned here? Please let us know if you provide a service that hasn’t been mentioned and you think we can benefit from knowing about it. Thank you.