The Premise: Most small businesses can be started without venture capital or big investments of any kind. In fact, they can usually get going with $1,000 or less, and often with just $100. The $100 Business Forum is an online group of kick-ass people who want to create independence through freelancing or a small business. You'll work with Chris Guillebeau, Pam Slim, and 149 of your peers who will be creating their own projects. If you'd like to build a very small business or improve an existing project, we'd love to have you on the team. The next group starts Spring 2011.
- Quickly evaluate business ideas to determine which are worth pursuing
- Create a one-page, no-fluff business plan
- Increase revenue immediately for existing businesses
- Understand how to use partnership and joint ventures to extend your reach
- Use social networking without becoming a spammer
- LAUNCH your project before the end of the 28-day forum
Who said starting a business had to cost money? To start a very small business, you don’t need any number of things that are frequently thought of as prerequisites or first steps. You don't need venture capital, credit card debt, an MBA, a complicated legal structure, a physical office, or much else. You just need a product or service, a group of people who will give you money for it, and a way to actually get paid. The $100 Business Forum is led by Chris and Pam, and you can learn more about them here or here. But more importantly, this group is about you. You'll have a chance to contribute and share your story as you're building a small business project of your own choosing. We'll all be in this together. For more background, read this post.
- What's this all about?
It's a forum to help you get started with a small business idea. If you don't yet have a project, by the end of our time together you'll have it launched. (Spending lots of money on an unproven idea sucks, and so does waiting.) If you already have a business, you'll have made significant, measurable changes to it. Either way, the goal is that nothing will be the same by the end of our four weeks together.
- What will we do?
Every other day, Chris or Pam will provide an exercise to complete or lead a discussion for the group. In the first week we'll look at a range of ideas and examine the pros and cons of each. In the second week, we'll help you create a simple, one-page business plan for your project. We'll look at the three questions every proposed project has to answer (they're easy but important), and figure out how they apply to your project. In the third and fourth weeks, we'll talk about a variety of topics, including what you need to do to get started right away, ways to increase revenue in an existing business, the importance of cash flow, and pricing.
- How will we work together?
You can share your answers with the rest of the group, get feedback from up to 151 people (your 149 peers, plus Chris and Pam), and offer your own input to others. The goal is to have fun and make a real plan for your miniature startup.
- What if I already have an amazingly successful small business?
You're welcome to join us, but this group is mostly for people who are just getting started or are in the early stages of growth (less than $75,000 a year income). The goal is to expand the pie by creating more people like you.
- Will I have to work hard?
In a word, yes. Hard work is a prerequisite to entrepreneurial success. The important thing is to be sure you're working hard on the right things, and that's what we'll help with.
- What do I need?
A computer (any kind) with an internet connection, and an idea. Bring your idea, and the whole group will brainstorm on turning it into more of a business.
Low Cost, Strict Limit In keeping with the premise of "less is more", just $100 covers 28 days of activities, group calls, and surprises. Awesome, right? Yes, but we only accept 150 Participants for each group to ensure that the group size is manageable. If you're interested, don't wait! [Groups are currently closed. Check back in Spring 2011 for the next one.]