College entrepreneurs have a lot to be proud of. For one, starting a business before actually graduating with a degree is a remarkable feat, especially for those who have limited experience in the professional working world. However, with the Internet it’s easier than ever to create a business and market your products or services from the comfort of your own apartment or dorm room. The trick is coming up with a business that you can sustain in such a situation, as well as ensuring that it’s unique enough to be successful.
With the right business model and a great deal of passion and drive, you can build a business from the ground up before you ever get a degree in hand. Here are a few unique business ideas to kick-start your brain and help push your creativity in the right direction….
DIY Record Label
A lot of people think that running a record label is something that takes thousands of dollars of start-up capital to get off the ground, but that’s simply not the case these days. Music production and distribution is easy and less expensive than ever before, making it possible to release recordings on a shoestring budget. College students have the added benefit of being surrounded by young people who are interested in purchasing locally made music, making this an excellent entrepreneurial pursuit.
All it takes to start a label is some cheap recording equipment, a handful of friends or local musicians who are willing to put their music out on your label and enough drive to produce and distribute the recordings locally. It’s not going to make you rich overnight, but you never know which act might get discovered, in which case you might wish to sell your business.
Record labels become expensive to run as they grow larger, and as Equilibrium Partners Inc. founder Mark Rotstein says, “Not wanting to invest additional funds into the growth of a company might also mean it is time to get out and profit from the sale instead.”
Graphic Design Business
Those who are in school for graphic design and other arts programs may want to take what they’ve already learned and apply it to a business standpoint. Almost any business can benefit from partnering with a good designer, whether it be for print materials or web design. So long as you have the proper software, this is a business that you can build with little to no overhead, and you’ll be able to charge a relatively substantial hourly fee once you start building an adequate portfolio. Building a client-base isn’t always easy, however, which is why it’s almost always best to start off by offering to work pro bono.
What better ways for those who are going for a degree in photography to practice their skills than to start their own freelance business out of their apartment or dorm? Digital cameras have made it easier than ever before for beginner-to-advanced photographers to produce shots of exceptionally-high quality, and combined with an eye for the art-form, you’ve got practically everything you need to get a business off the ground.
As with graphic design, finding the right clients can be difficult, and offering to work for free at first is never a bad idea. Once you start building a portfolio though, you can expect to be able to charge more than most people realize to shoot a wedding, graduation or other event.
Creativity can go a very long way in the world of business, and just because you’re still in school doesn’t mean you can’t begin getting the wheels in motion to create your very own successful career.