I have been thinking about starting my own design business for a while. The problem is that I work a full time job. My question is this: What are some ways that I can generate business in my after hours work time, so that I can transition from working full time for someone else to working for myself? I have all of the necessary equipment, and I am even mobile, but the trouble I am experiencing is how to approach new prospects, or how to even find them in my off hours. I work the typical 8:00am-5:00pm shift, but after that, I am free.

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If it's business to business, consider partnering with someone who is out of work, who might prospect for you on a commission-only basis.   It might be hard finding the right person, but it's worth looking around.   

 

Trying to approach prospects via email or letter would be another approach- then when they respond and you need a face-to-face, take a half day of vacation to present and seal the deal.

EOK pub night is off hours and you'll meet lots of people there who may have good ideas for you once you tell them what you do. Check it out on Dec. 1st next month at Brixx Wood Fire Pizza on Kingston Pike. It's under events if you want to RSVP. Good luck James, lots of entrepreneurs have the same problem. :) It's a great question :)

James,

My brother and I have been doing just that for a few years.  Key point is to understand your business model.  Can you define further design business? Is your service local or regional.  Can you use the time zones to your advantage? 

I am mainly local, but I have also worked abroad via phone, Skype and any other way I can communicate long distance. For example, I am working with a female politician up north at the moment, and we converse via phone, email and the web. I posted this back in July, and I have done a lot of research and have learned to market myself much better. My portfolio site is http://www.gsquaredstudios.com, and it went from page 15 or 16 in the search engines for Knoxville graphic design, to page 4. I am making progress, so I am in a different place than before. I am suprised that you guys replied now, because this is an older post.

James,

Once someone responds to your post at any point it puts it back on the main page again so therefore people are seeing it for the first time in some cases. :)

 

oh that makes sense! I was wondering why I was getting a response all of a sudden.

 

I have recently joined a referral group - REO - in which we meet for an hour and a half at the same time and day each week to pass out referrals for each other.  I have gotten a bunch of business from that.  Check it out..http://reomeetings.com/

even though it is hard to get off each week while working a full time job, maybe since its the same time and day each week, you could work something out.  I go to an afternoon one but there are several in the morning hours so maybe you could go before work even..

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