In an earlier post on our blog, we discussed a whole bunch of different, creative ways to invest in your business with $1,000 or less. That’s all well and good if you’ve got an extra grand laying around, or you happen to stumble upon it somewhere (and if you do, could you tell us where?!).
But what about when you’re just starting out? When you’re bootstrapping your business and scraping together your extra pennies just to keep your doors open? When you need an extra $1,000, and you need it fast?
We’ve been there, too. Today, we’re flipping the script and sharing eight realistic ways to come up with a thousand big ones in a short time frame.
- Raise Your Prices
Yes, we’re being serious. The fastest way to make more money is to charge more, plain and simple.
If you’re balking at this, let me ask you a simple question: do you think your product or service is worth what you’re currently charging? I sure as heck hope you answered with a resounding “YES,” otherwise we’ve got a whole ‘nother problem on our hands.
So, if you think your prices are worth it, I’m willing to take it a step further and guess that you probably think you’re actually worth more than what your customers are paying. It’s a phenomenon we see all the time with new businesses: you charge less than you actually feel you’re worth, because you’re afraid customers will simply refuse to pay more.
It’s time to end this epidemic once and for all and charge what you’re worth. The key is helping your customers understand the value they’re getting for their money. You need to break it down for them step by step, whether that means better reporting to show how far their dollar is going each month or better marketing materials that more clearly explain your benefits.
If you’re currently bringing in $10K in revenue per month, raising your prices a mere 10% will get you your extra $1,000 almost immediately.
- Offer an Add-On or Upgrade
It’s far easier to sell to an existing customer than to win a brand new one. In fact, studies have shown it costs around five times as much to attract a new customer than to get an old one to buy from you again.
So with this in mind, what’s a smart strategy? Going back to your existing customer pool and offering them something new they can’t resist.
If you sell a physical product, maybe it’s as simple as running a flash sale on your most popular item and letting your customers know with an email blast. If you sell a service, come up with a one-month added bonus or upgrade customers can opt into for a limited time.
- Wrap Up Open Projects
Especially when you’re a solopreneur, projects have a way of taking on a life of their own that can drag on and on. Sometimes you’re so concerned with doing a great job that you forget the most important end-game: getting paid!
What finished or near-finished projects do you have that you can wrap up and get paid for by the end of the month? Do you need to circle back for any final approvals or make the last round of changes somewhere? Maybe you’ve got an invoice that’s just been hanging out unpaid for 30 days.
What easier way to get money in the door than to get paid for work that’s already done?! We talk more about ways to get paid faster here.
- Tackle a Side Gig
What are you doing between 8 p.m. and midnight? Is the answer is “binge watching Netflix,” you’ve got room to take on a side project.
Whether it’s writing for a blog in your area of expertise, tutoring a struggling college student or designing websites for people in your network, take one of your skills and turn it into a side gig that will yield extra cash.
- Offer Consulting Sessions
If managing a full-on side gig isn’t an option, consider offering consulting sessions around your existing niche.
If you run an IT company, you might offer one-hour sessions to help business owners better grasp their technology options. If you’re a marketer, you could come in and give businesses a five-point strategy for improving their advertising, and so on.
- Cancel Recurring Subscriptions
Recurring subscriptions add up quickly, especially for services you don’t use on a regular basis or you no longer need. And what about those that require you to pay for 12 months up front? That's a hefty fee for something you might not even need six months down the road.
You can save big bucks by eliminating those subscriptions that aren’t essential to run your business.
A few to consider:
- Magazine subscriptions
- Industry memberships
- Software subscriptions (Many Microsoft Office programs, for example, can be replaced with the free G Suite from Google)
- Paid marketing and sales platforms
- Subscription boxes
- Credit cards and banking platforms with an annual fee
- Plan a Course or Workshop
The global e-learning market is expected to reach a whopping $51.5 billion (yep, that’s a B) by the end of this year. Snag your slice of the pie by launching your own virtual course, workshop or webinar on the subject you know best.
The best part of offering an online course is that you can profit from it before you even hold the event. How? Through pre-sales.
Once you have a topic and basic outline in mind, you can pre-sell your course to your existing network, customer base or email list. This is a great way to not only make cash up front, but to gauge the viability of your topic before you invest hours into creating your presentation.
- Get Rid of Excess
Finally, the old standby for when you need cash quickly: sell your stuff. It’s cliché, but you’d be surprised how much potential moolah is sitting around in your drawers, attics and garages just waiting for a new owner. I consider myself a minimalist, but was shocked at the amount of stuff I was able to sell prior to a recent move.
Have a creative strategy for bringing in $1,000? We’d love to hear it! Leave it in the comments section below.
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