12 Most Critical Steps in Creating a Business You Love From Home

12 Most Critical Steps in Creating a Business You Love From Home

Want to create a business you love, from home? Watch the news of today and it’s nothing but doom and gloom. More Americans are fearful of losing their jobs than ever before. The unemployment rate has hit a historic high. Our economy is in the toilet, and more Americans are panicking about ‘what will be.’

That said, now has never been a better time for Americans to decide to take the stability of their future into their own hands. No longer can we depend on working a “good job” for 40 years and retiring with a pension. Those days are gone and will never return.

Statistically, more millionaires have been created in times of economic depression. That is where we find ourselves now, however, starting a business must be done correctly.

Why do so many small businesses fail in the first two years? Because people start businesses without knowing business. Here are 12 steps to follow to create a lucrative, yet leveraged business from home doing what you love:

1. Create a vision and clarify the business model

One must know what vision they have for their business. Is it to build a multi-million dollar business empire, or simply a business that will create a comfortable flow of income without stress? This vision will be critical in attaching to when times get challenged in the early stages of building a business. Attaching to the vision, rather than the challenging circumstances, will propel the new business owner forward.

The business model is critical in that this is where leverage is created. Creating hourly services or selling “chatchkies” will simply result in “chasing your tail” to always be earning money. Creating bulk services for a higher amount of income will result in a leveraged business that allows the business owner to work less for more income.

2. Identifying the niche market for your home-based business

This step will create fear in most business owners. “But my product/service can help anybody!” is a common push-back.

This analogy will help: would you rather shoot a gun into the ocean to hopefully hit a fish, or would you rather shoot a gun into a barrel-full of tuna hoping to hit one?

Targeting a smaller market within your prospective client base will allow you to secure more business quickly rather “yelling to the masses” hoping to find someone who will buy.

3. Your marketing message & USP (Unique Selling Proposition, for a Business You Love)

What makes you different than your competitors? What will YOU do that others won’t.

Your marketing message must “speak” directly to your niche market. You will have a picture of a person in your niche market that you are “talking” to in your marketing. Whether it be a pay-per-click ad, an article, a blog post, a newspaper ad, etc., you must speak to your target market and pull them in with what makes you special.

4. Your offer

Offering prospective clients an offer of free value will attract more people to YOU than your competitors.

This is where you communicate your knowledge and your USP to your clients. Offer an e-book, an audio recording, a video training series, etc. But, ask your prospects to leave an email address in return for your “freebie” and you can continue to create a relationship with that prospect through an effective email marketing campaign.

5. Your website = Your Business

Your website is a direct reflection of you. Your branding and messaging must authentically communicate who you are.

Your website must include a blog where you write about your expertise, what’s happening in your industry, and why you are passionate about what you do.

Your website should be self-hosted. Do NOT use a free blogging service as the content is not owned by you and, it just looks cheap. Free services will reflect badly on you as a business owner and ‘cheapen’ your brand.

6. Creating Your Celebrity

You must become a “celebrity” so-to-speak in your area of expertise. You want to be everywhere. You’ll want to utilize social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube to communicate your message.

Write articles that will organically show up in specific industry keywords on search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing.

You will want your potential clients to say, “You are everywhere!”

7. Create your signature system

Systematizing your service will create the leverage most small business owners do NOT have.

Creating a system to work prospects through to becoming paid clients is extremely important. Using pull marketing, rather than push marketing will pull your prospects through an automated system. They will self-identify themselves as a client of yours and take the next step.

Once your system is created, your business is automated up until you have a paid client, then you step in. This is an extremely important step and one that usually is skipped and leads to the quick burnout of the business owner.

8. Build a list

Your email list of potential clients will be a direct result of what your business is worth.

Enticing website visitors and those you meet personally with your free offer to leave their email give you a chance to establish rapport with your list.

You will share free knowledge, free value and your expertise with this email list. The size doesn’t matter as much, however, the responsiveness of the list is critical. 80% of your communication should be offering value. 20% will be promoting your products/services, however, with a targeted niche market, your list should be responsive enough to buy when you offer something.

By creating enough value to your list, a responsive list will result in a business owner being able to name his paydays. If the authenticity of the free value is there, when a biz owner needs a payday, he sends out an offer. The list responds, the biz owner gets paid!

9. Your marketing plan

A small business is 90% marketing, 10% of what you do.

A specific and consistent weekly marketing plan is needed in order to build a business quickly. Without one, the business will surely fail.

With one, the business will reach extremely high levels of success!

Your marketing plan can include strategies like: article marketing, pay-per-click ads, social media marketing, media submissions, guest blogging, press releases, etc.

Choose the strategies that work for you, implement them consistently, and your business will grow quickly and consistently.

10. Create your referral system

The referral system is critical, especially at the creation of the business. A biz owner’s sphere of influence will most likely be the source of new clients. Once a client base is established, a system should be in place to ask for referrals.

People do business with those they know, like and trust. Your sphere of influence will know, like and trust you first. That will lead to initial clients.

Once client-work is finished and the client is happy, they will now know, like and trust you. A business based on referrals sets a solid foundation for a consistently growing business.

11. Automating your business

Once a biz owner establishes a solid “pull” marketing system, automating the system and marketing is key.

A biz owner will always have to work on their business, however, they will leverage their time and earnings by automating the business as much as possible. This will be done with your marketing, your services, etc.

Automating as much as possible will need to to be done by thinking outside of the box in some areas, but once figured out, this will be a transformational realization.

Working less, but making more income will be a realization that seems too good to be true…but it’s not when implemented properly.

12. Establishing the entrepreneurial mindset

Leaving a job to be a business owner is, mentally, a tough move. Moving from an hourly or monthly income mindset to wrapping one’s head around leveraging time for money is extremely tough.

Scheduling time for self-development, seminars to increase your industry knowledge and increasing your sphere of influence, and surrounding oneself with successful entrepreneurs is critical to a biz owner.

Moving from an “employee” mentality to an “entrepreneur’s” mentality will be the toughest step, but when done, will create a business owner that is “psychologically unemployable.” Once this happens, business success in inevitable. If one can’t go back to being an employee, then he must make his business successful “no matter what.”

Follow these 12 steps to create a foundation for a business, and one is positioned to create a transformational lifestyle. Realizing that there is more to life than the four sides of a cubicle and creating a business doing what one actually loves to do will, not only transform the individual, but also start to create a global shift of inspired people changing their own lives and the world as well!

Featured image courtesy of http://bantencerdas.com licensed via creative commons.
(Link for image: http://www.DitchYourJobNow.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/work-from-home-business.jpeg)

Vidette Vanderweide


Vidette Vanderweide is a Premiere Business Mentor, Speaker & Life Enthusiast. She is the renowned leader in transitioning women out of Corporate America to be rich in all areas of life and to find their "deliciousness" again by creating successful businesses based around what they love! Vidette has an innate ability to bring inspired humor, loving feedback, and an inquisitive viewpoint to her clients' needs. Learn more at http://DitchYourJobNow.com.

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Great post, loved this analogy: "would you rather shoot a gun into the ocean to hopefully hit a fish, or would you rather shoot a gun into a barrel-full of tuna hoping to hit one?"

So true. It's important to realize that - however great you think your product is - the harsh reality is that most people won't want it and won't care about you or your business. You can't please everyone. The sooner you narrow your vision and focus on areas in which you can really succeed the better.


This was a nice surprice. I started a home based business 10 years ago. Today we have offices in the USA and Greece! These steps remain critical to us today - there are just more people on hand to take them. I can't express how gratifying the whole experience has been - and continues to be. I would call 1. Find your passion and clarify the business model.

PegFitzpatrick moderator

Really great post! Love the "creating your celebrity" section - your personal brand is YOU and people need to be comfortable with that to be successful on their own in business.


Vidette this is an awesome blueprint to help anyone finally breakout of their corporate job. There are so many people who want to take that step, but they just don't know where to start. This list will help! My favorite is #12 reminds me of the Henry Ford quote -- "Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right." When starting a business you have to establish the CAN mindset. Good job!


Great list for building a business, just don't agree with the order they are in. Thanks!


Great blueprint for a successful home-based business. What I love is that it has to be a business that YOU love - without passion the plan doesn't mean much. Thanks so much!


This is a fantastic resource! I'm so glad you talk about planning. There is a lot of "failure worship" in the online world, it seems. People talk about how much you can learn from failure, which is true to some extent, but man, if your business fails you could be in real trouble before you start benefiting from those lessons. It's so important to plan, learn, think, AND dream. Dreams are not always (nearly) enough.

Thanks for writing this!


Exactly! Passion is the first ingredient...maybe even step #1, but then there would be 13 steps and wouldn't fit into the 12 Most criteria! :) In all seriousness, being passionate about what one does makes the journey a little easier. Not without challenges, but a "different" kind of challenge.


@margieclayman Agreed! I see many business owners who "wing it." They set up shop and think that attending a few free networking meetings will have the business rolling in. There is much more to be planned out and when done strategically, the foundation is there!

And yes, I do believe it all starts with a strong dream! A dream to attach to while the foundation is being laid so the attachment is not on the hardships. When that happens, quitting becomes too easy. Thanks for commenting!


Personally I think identifying a market need is #1. Yes I will look for that need within what I am passionate about. I do not see how you can develop a business model without knowing what need you are filling.

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