Wasted Opportunities #2: Music Tribute Night and Artwork Not Sold

Occasionally I’ll write up anecdotes where money making ideas were not followed through or fell by the wayside because of procrastination.

It serves as my own reminder and as a lesson for the future.

Dear Diary...

My core skills are art and design. I’ve devised a method for producing hand painted canvases based on printed templates using carbon copy techniques. I approached a few music shops with samples and was referred to a local club owner (it may interest you to know he was one of two drummers in the British band Showaddywaddy) who I intended to contact with a proposal to produce canvases related to the tribute bands playing. Sack Sabbath, Thin Lizzy UK and White Snake UK were booked for the following month and painted canvas art of Ozzy Osbourne etc would have been ideal. No licencing would be needed because the sales would take place on private property. My costs would be art materials plus commissions paid to the owner.

Raise Capital for the Big Business Idea

Funding a business venture can be complicated and time consuming if you don’t know where to begin. Over the years I have created various small income streams from virtually nothing (and minimal investment) but which one day may warrant a loan or cash injection to take things to a new level.

Bootstrapping and self finance is something most people are familiar with during the embryonic stage of a cash generating idea.

The initial testing ought to be about setting up efficient operations rather than growing an error-ridden company too fast only to see hidden problems multiplied. The best ventures start small and develop a growth strategy. Do this and you’ll know what you need money for.

Manufacture Low Cost Original Canvas Art

Each of these paintings took approx five hours to complete

I’ve written briefly about art sales in the past and more recently targeting niche subject matter. Now I’d like to present ideas for further artistic potential by at what I term “catch all” subject matter. This is the kind of art with mass appeal without the stupid price tags. I’m talking about painting life-like impressionistic depictions of famous personalities in a matter of hours using computer imagery and pencil tracing techniques.

A Beginner's Guide to Insurance

When it comes to insurance, it’s important to know what’s what. With over half of the UK owning a smartphone, it’s clear that we value an expensive possession, and so it’s essential to know that our contents can be protected in case the unfortunate occurs. 

Of course, as the saying goes, prevention is better than the cure. Nevertheless, insurance exists to compensate us in the case of theft, loss or damage, at a manageable monthly rate to avoid forking out on large replacement fees.

As The Telegraph reported in 2011, according to studies nearly seven million British households are underinsured – totalling £200bn worth of at-risk home contents. Whether you’re a student moving into halls of residence (with costly items such as laptops, speakers and iPods), about to buy a new car or making preparations for loved ones, there are various types of insurance offered by companies for you to take out. The varying types are often associated with a particular kind of risk, be it definite or dependent on other factors.

Childhood Business Ventures: What Was Yours?

Autobiographical and anecdotal accounts of successful business people in their early days often suggest they had a keen eye for opportunities as youngsters. 

Alan Sugar and Richard Branson are two such examples where wheeling and dealing to earn pocket money was normal. I often wonder to what extent childhood schemes affect the extraordinary success they went on to achieve.

I had an interest in money making when I was about 11 or 12, (selling toys outside my house after spotting a kid in my neighbourhood doing just that) and when my family moved house, I immediately set about flogging unwanted possessions to raise money for computer games. The venture did not last because I ran out of stock and all the other children on the street copied! This was my first taste of niche market saturation and competition! Good way to make friends though.

5 Ways to Finance Importing Goods

If you intend to import goods from outside the EU to the UK you may be thinking of ways to raise capital finance from a third party.

Imports are subject to duty, VAT, freight fare and the price of obtaining an import licence (if required). Naturally, the economy of scale lowers cost per unit and you may already have established a supply chain in which you are a vital link. But where will you get the money to get your venture off the ground?

Are You Serious about Self Employment?

According to StartUpTracker the last couple of months have seen the most business start ups in the UK on record. What about the wind-downs and unsuccessful ventures? How many actually get past the first couple of hurdles and survive a good few years? Are people simply being whipped into frenzy only for their enthusiasm to fizzle out?

Increase eBay Sales with Embedded Video

If you're selling an item on eBay, think about filming the item with added commentary and uploading it to YouTube. Most mobile phones have a camera allowing you to create a basic, information-rich sales pitch.

This shows everything is in working order and helps unload the burden of proof on you as the seller. In this example I'm using a TV, but you may consider using video for just about anything. It would be great if you were selling something like a car or caravan.

What To Do When You Lose a Supplier

What can you do when part of the supply chain in your business is broken? 

Recently a high street retailer decided to discontinue stocking a certain sized envelope I needed for my self-illustrated greetings card venture.