Can I be a solopreneur?

October 24, 2022

The Beginning

Ever since I was young I've wanted to be an entrepreneur. When I was around 14 years old I started selling sweets at school. Behind the backs of the teachers as getting caught would have landed me a Friday detention.

Once a week my dad would drive me down to Makro, a large wholesaler near Belfast, and I would buy my products. On the first occasion my dad loaned me £50 to buy the sweets, chocolate, and drinks. I worked out that I could make £50 profit a week on every £50 spent. So I was able to pay my dad back very quickly.

At the time I was getting something like £10-£15 pocket money a week. So you can understand why this was such a big deal to me as a teenager.

The business was easy. All I had to do was bring the sugary treats in to school and the customers would come to me. They all knew where to find me at break and lunch. All I had to do was discretely exchange the goods for cash and voila, business! The hardest part was trying to carry it all in each morning. Fortunately though I lived very close to my school so it wasn’t all bad.

Honestly this experience alone probably taught me more about business than I ever learnt at school. The power of credit to get a business running. Selling products in a market with high demand but little competition. Among many other lessons. It gave me my first taste at the world of business, and from that point on I knew it would be a big part of my life some day.

Why I left my Job ?

Well as I said I’ve always wanted to be an entrepreneur. I want freedom and building businesses or obtaining other wealth generating assets is the only real way to obtain it.

It can be done very slowly over time through the form of a pension and low risk investments. Stored away and compounding every month as you siphon off your pay check. However, then you only get to enjoy a small dose of freedom when you’re in your 50’s/60’s and you’re not in the prime of your life to enjoy it.

The only way to obtain wealth fast is to build content, products, and services that people are willing to pay for, that grow your wealth while you sleep, and investing in index funds to ensure your long term financial freedom is secure.

Therefore to answer the question why I left, well… I felt it was time. I felt that I had the bare minimum amount of skills to give something, if not a few things, a shot.

I know what sort of life I want to live, and I know that I can’t currently live it because I’m not wealthy enough, and I know that it’s not attainable through a normal 9-5 job without waiting an incredibly long time or without sacrificing lots of other areas of my life.

I have several months of runway where I am going to try and create a SAAS product that will hopefully generate me enough MRR to go full time on my own businesses, and retake control of my life.

I’ve never been more motivated for something. I know what’s possible now and I know what I can make with this amazing skill of software development. I’m very far from being a great developer with just 1.5 years experience. BUT I’m good enough, and I believe in myself.

I’m also only 25. I have very few responsibilities and I believe I’m at the perfect point in my life to take this risk with minimal downsides.

The Plan

In march 2021 I started a YouTube channel called Jays Way. I wanted to detail how I learned the German language to B1 level, give some helpful tips and advice, as well as make some funny videos. To my surprise, despite not posting any videos since the summer of 2021 I am now sitting on almost 12000 Subscribers. Many of whom are very interested in language learning like I am.

Well, as you’re probably thinking (as you’re a smart cookie), Jay! You’ve got quite a sizeable niche audience. My thoughts exactly!

I’ve loved learning languages over the last few years, really only dabbling since the intensive German experience in 2017/2018. However, I want that all to change. I love the process of learning a new language, and as a developer with a niche audience interested in this space I believe I can make some cool products and services geared towards it.

My primary idea so far, the one I am currently working on full time as of today, (I have a few ideas but this one is the only one I think I can pull off within my 2 month time window) is a more social, community based, solely language focused take on ANKI, the popular spaced-repetition app.

My goal is to build a quick MVP in less than two weeks. Get my Youtube Audience to test as I build and move along from there. I have plans for monetisation, how to build user retention and engagement, the brand among other things.

It’ll be interesting to see how powerful YouTube is, and simply having a niche audience is, in being able to market a product/service.

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