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How do you start a business by yourself?

I am becoming a piano tuner (meaning I am the only employee). How do I make my business legal and promote it etc. I just have no clue as to how to make the business a “business.”

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2 Responses to “How do you start a business by yourself?”

  1. kemperk said :

    a; becoming a legal business and
    becoming a profitable business
    are not related to each other.

    promoting it–ask every store
    in a 35 mi radius that sells pianos
    if you can list your name with them
    as a tuner. AND you might
    want to hold music lessons or
    other activity to expand your arena.
    MORE people want to learn music
    than need pianos tuned.

    IF there are enough people in your
    city/county that need what you wish to do [my dad was a pianist],
    start to just do it.

    do not bother with being “licensed” yet.

    after you have been tuning for
    3-6 mo and earning a profit,
    then, apply to your city hall
    for a business license.
    I used to recommend everyone
    get their license first but
    too many times, the company folds
    right after they get a license
    because the biz they expected
    [profits] did not arise.

  2. John D said :

    yes you do, but you have gotten just a step or two ahead of where your feet are at, right now.
    let us look at where you are at versus where you think you need to be versus where you need to be.
    1. you have identified a product or service that the is a market for, and you have the ability to supply that market. this is a good thing, and additionally it would seem that several hundred others are NOT going to compete with your enterprise, that to is generally good, but do not overvalue it.
    2. now let us more closely begin the business process, prepare an outline, this is a business, so run it as one from the start you are less likely to RUIN it.
    2/a you must conceive it , to achieve it, if you can not clearly put it on paper what it is you do, how you do it, why you do it, the profitability you need , the costs associated with it, then STOP, until you know something, less you fail before you get going.
    2/b. the purpose of this business is to make you money, not for you to feed it forever. it would seem in my mind hat this is mostly potential side line, 2nd income business, but that is not automatically bad thing
    3. NO Universal panacea: i do not know what state and city you are located it, but if you have a name or trade name, a phone, and a system to keep records of your business, than per the IRS, you are in business. You are at this point in time a sole proprietor, as you are not an incorperated entetity, nor are you a limited liabiltity company. all 50 states have different laws,and you can educate yourself on the web, as to where you live, ask a good CPA, who does small business as the main part of his pratice to exsplain the difference, most will not charge you, and if you suceed you need a CPA, so they are selling to a potential client. do not go fishing for an attorney yet. You or the CPA can get a Federal Tax I D number from the IRS for free, but do so only after you know how the business is structured.
    4. SCORE, is an affilate of the Small Business Administrtion, and one of the few government activities that ever does anything right, there are about 400 chapters most of their assistance is excellent and free, or at a minimal cost,
    5. Marketing, is the single most overlooked aspect of small business in my opinion, and one of if not the biggest cause for failure. Right now you are labor, and management, and you want to grow and suceed, so the area of management concerned with marketing is you foremost worry right now.
    As you have and know the cost of labor to produce your service, you must add a premium for it that is your gross profit or retail price, from that a per cent must be allociated for marketing and advertising, even if it is just a simple letter with a coupon, mail out at your cost as a courtescy from say all the local sellers of pianos in a 25 to 50 mile radii. So you clearly need to contact the piano sellers, who are the first and most likely source of customers for your business. Any computer and printer should allow you to produce a decent looking coupon where you give a better than normal price for customers who respond by a certin date, let us say $10 off the regular price of $39.
    6. other things you need to know. do not have the time or space. see item 7.
    7. Good Luck and do not sell your self short or to cheaply, you know more that you thought you did for all i did was remined you that organisation is just as important as the motivation.


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