Budgetboost.co is supported by its readers. If you click on or buy something via a link on this page, we may earn a commission.

My Fake Business Would Have These 10 Mistakes Covered ;-)

If you have a chance, please check out my staff writer post, Are You Missing The Big Picture, at Sweating the Big Stuff today!  🙂

Yesterday I posted about my “dream” small business idea, pet sitting.  I quickly went over a few ideas and came to the conclusion that by charging just $20 per dog per day plus more for extras, I’d have enough business in 1 year to be making $3000-$6000 a month.

Then I remembered this post at Yahoo Finance, 10 Mistakes That Start-Up Entrepreneurs Make.  I’m going to see if Crystal’s Cozy Kennels (yes, that’s my imaginary business name) would have its bases covered:

1.  Going it alone.

Well, I was planning on running it by myself, but if we up the dog count to 10-15 at a time, help would be nice.  Anybody want to be a co-owner?  🙂

2.  Asking too many people for advice.

I have this one covered for sure.  I only ask a few people for advice for any project I’m working on.  Kris at Everyday Tips and Thoughts is my go to friend for blogging advice.  I also ask Mr. BFS.  I only ask everybody for advice when I want a quick look at a bunch of point-of-views to give me an idea of where to start.

3.  Spending too much time on product development, not enough on sales.

I don’t have a perfectionist mentality, so this isn’t usually a problem for me.  As you can tell from my two new blogs, I definitely don’t wait around until everything is perfect, lol.  Crystal’s Cozy Kennels would just need an air conditioned living space for dogs built and I’d get to filling those spots ASAP.

4.  Targeting too small of a market.

Pet sitting is already a niche business, so I wouldn’t be too picky about the residents.  The dogs would need shot records and not have a history of biting, but that would be the extent of my requirements.  Maybe I’d even have a specialty area for the mean ones…I don’t know…

5.  Not marketing yourself well and spreading the word.

No problem here since I got some custom business cards and have been passing them out like crazy. I’m too cheap to pay for ads just yet and feel I would waste my money doing so. Being friendly in person is my main approach.

6.  Overpaying for customers.

Word of mouth, flyers, and Craigslist would be my ways of advertising.  If that just wasn’t enough, I might place small ads in the cheap area papers like Green Sheet and The Thrifty Nickel, but I doubt that would be necessary.  When I pet sat at our house, Craigslist brought me all my clients.

7.  Raising too little capital.

If Crystal’s Cozy Kennels ever is a real idea, I’d make sure to know exactly how much the land, pet building, and utilities would cost.  I’d also make sure that I could cover ALL costs even if I had absolutely no business.  I refuse to paint a rosy picture for myself – realism is just a good idea.  I’d either have the whole cost covered with our own money in advance or make sure I could get a loan or investors that could cover at least 2 years of costs up front.

8.  Raising too much capital.

I’d aim for enough capital to cover 2 years.  When it comes to profit, the more money, the better.  🙂

9.  Not having a business plan.

If I make sure to have enough money to cover all expenses for at least one year of absolutely no profit, that would make me feel safe.  I’d probably shoot for two years just to feel extra happy.  I’d have to really suck not to get any business for 2 years and then I’d need to call it quits anyway.  I figure that the land would be rented unless I found somewhere to buy cheap, the air conditioned building would be a fixed expense, the utilities would be pretty stable with contracted rates, and the supplies would be a fixed expense to start with and only would need to be renewed if I actually had customers.  🙂

As far as the income projections, that would be pretty straight-forward.  Based on past experience and a little research, I could come up with some predictions.  Off the top of my head, we’d have 1-2 customers for a few days each the first month, 3 the second month, 4-5 the third month, and 5 or more from there on out.  I would even guess that I could have every “room” full on a regular basis within 6 months but I’ll say a year to be on the safe side.

10.  Over-thinking your business plan.

Again, I’m not a perfectionist, so this would not happen.

What do you think?  Would Crystal’s Cozy Kennels make it?  How about whatever business you mentioned yesterday or just thought about?

15 thoughts on “My Fake Business Would Have These 10 Mistakes Covered ;-)”

  1. Aloysa

    You know, all of these mistakes (with a few exceptions)can be applied to blogging. Especially if you view your blog as a business. You do have to have some kind of “business” plan for your blog: your target audience, what your short term or long term goals are and so on. My biggest one is overthinking.

  2. Everyday Tips

    BFS – I have a feeling you are going to be pet sitting and blogging…

    Thank you so much for linking to me. I can give advice on non-blogging topics too! (hee hee)

    I really think you need to consider your plan.

  3. Squirrelers

    I’m sure your business would do well, if nothing else for the reality that you’re obviously someone who’s intelligent, thinks things through, and has demonstrated success with this blog.

    By the way, if you do launch the business, your regular updates on it would be fun for many folks to follow on this blog and/or your others.

  4. Molly On Money

    I started chicken farming meat chickens this past spring. I did a business plan and did the research. When I could see there were still some ‘holes’ I decided to start small, it became a kind of study. I raised under 100 chickens. The information I got from the experience has been invaluable plus I didn’t have to put a bunch of upfront cash. Next year I will be doing it again with more chickens and a few changes.
    It seems with pet sitting you could easily start small, figure out what you don’t know and grow, grow, grow!

  5. Crystal @ BFS

    @Aloysa, good point. I actually am pursuing blogging as a full time job in the next 15 months, so I have a rough plan over at www.crystalclearthoughts.com today. My biggest mistake is disregarding the importance of SEO.

    @Everyday Tips, oh, I know. You know I ask your advice on everything! 🙂

    I hope I will be blogging and pet sitting full time in the future. That sounds like an awesome future to me!

    @Squirrelers, you and everyone else who has made such flattering assumptions about me have been building up my confidence these last few weeks! I really do appreciate it and hope to live up to expectations!

    If I do launch Crystal’s Cozy Kennels, I will be updating everyone at www.dogslifeforme.com just to make all of you read it, lol. Two birds with one stone, hehehe. 😉

    @Molly, I was browsing your blog last week and saw you mention chicken farming! I hope you have the perfect chicken season next year, good luck!

  6. When I saw the title I thought you were going to be talking about a money laundering or IRS scam. You really caught my eye!

  7. Sandy L

    I love your fake business plan. In my opinion, cost is king. Many of the failed businesses I see go into way too much debt before even opening the doors. It’s no wonder they go bankrupt..and then a savvy businessman swoops in and buys it for what it should be worth a year later.

    There are some fun restaurants here all owned by the same owner. They are always decorated in a cool fashion..he has a pizza shop with metal trashcans as seats and surfboards as counters. It’s setup like a surf shack. He has an italian place that has pool table felt on the walls and mobster pictures on the walls. It’s all super hipl, but you can tell he had a budget in mind to fit his business model. There are others that spend hundreds of thousands renovating, but go under 6 months later.

  8. Invest It Wisely

    I do agree with the idea that there should be enough to cover your expenses for a couple of years, and that starting out right away and building things up as you go along is better than spending a bunch of time building up something big, and then hoping that they will come!

  9. @Sandy L. I like your comments. I too have seen what seems to be creative and innovative ideas that fizzle. A business plan seems to be the first big step needed. SBA has much free online help about how to make them.

  10. Money Reasons

    Based on just your energy alone, I’m very sure you could get a kennel up and running successfully in no time at all!

    Once you get the kennel up and running you’ll have to send pictures 😉

    My only question is: can it compliment your blogging? I would think that it might…

    Good luck if you decide to crack that nut!!! (maybe this last sentence would have made more sense at squirrelers)

  11. karen

    Oh please move to my area so that I may use your kennel!
    Here’s something to consider that another kennel did: located near the airport and hours to accommodate flights (I think they were closed from 1 am – 5am? Typically no flights depart or arrive during that time). I hate having to board my dog an extra day because I can’t there in time to pick her up.

    Also, I would build a website. I love websites to obtain information.

  12. Crystal @ BFS

    @Carol, hahaha! I hadn’t even thought of that…hehehe. I like to keep you on your toes. 🙂

    @Sandy L, that pizza shop sounds great! I like the idea of trash can seats a lot! Yes, the key to a successful business is to only put in what makes sense – overkill is a death sentence for a new business…that’s what brought down the game store business we were involved in a few years ago…

    @Invest It Wisely, exactly!

    @Money Reasons, the full time blogging will come first and the imaginary kennels may follow, lol. First thing’s first. 🙂

    @karen, thanks for both great ideas! If this ever does come to fruition, it will be after I’m blogging full time, so I will keep a 24 hour schedule. The major airport is only 20 minutes from my house, so I could be completely flexible…that could be the thing that puts my kennels over the top! And the website would definitely have to happen – maybe with password protected nanny cams like I’ve seen with several kennels (for a small extra fee of course, lol). Thanks!

  13. Khaleef @ KNS Financial

    I think your business would do fine. You have a passion for it, and you plan on raising enough capital for the first couple of years! Also, a list like this usually can’t be applied in all cases.

  14. Crystal @ BFS

    @Khaleef, we’ll see if I ever actually go through with it, lol…

Comments are closed.