We are all about to get $600 from the federal government in the form of a stimulus check, I know I know it isn't what we received before, but it is something. Some of us are in situations where we need to pay something off or get a car or something that was needed, however for those who do not have it spent, what are you going to with that $600? I would suggest starting your business or at the very least set up the "structure" of your business. Caveat: I am not a lawyer who is going to charge you $5000 for a paralegal to file your paperwork, but I will show you what I did step by step to set up my LLC (Limited Liability Company) and my DBA's (Doing Business As) and I will also show you how to get your sellers permit and register for your domain name (website www.) and a couple of places to build your website. I will also discuss how where to build your logo and how to protect it.
Assumptions: You already have some idea on your business, scope or what kind of business and a name
Step 1 Set Up Your Business Structure
Look up your Secretary of States website (here is what California's Looks Like Click Here and do a "Business Search" to see if someone is already using your the idea you have for a business name. Once you are clear no one has the same name (now I will say if they are doing business in a different industry you might be able to duplicate) you would then apply for Sole Proprietor, LLC or S-Corp (Corporation). i did the LLC because I have a home based business and I can write off several of my expenses including a portion of my rent on taxes. Total filing FEE in CA $70 for LLC
Step 2 FIle Your DBA
Once you have set up your business structure you need to register your business with your county and/or city or both. DBA is an an abbreviation for "Doing Business As" which means your LLC can manage your business so that your name is not directly attached to the business for liability purposes. This is where you use the name of the business that the customers will be dealing directly with, for example our LLC is Dreams Delivered which manages both Hairlivery.com and Medtoursla.com The local court building is where we file the paperwork (you do necessarily need to have an LLC to accomplish this, you can put it in your name , but will have to pay another fee to change it once you have your LLC) for about $26 and will last for about 5 years. They will give you (2) copies one to use to open a bank account and the other to use for a required publication you need to publish for several weeks (it is not expensive about $50) in a local newspaper (they will give you a list). Total Fees Application $26 + Publication $50 = $76
*Some cities will require you to get a business license and/or permit (depends on the type of business) which can add more cost
Step 3 Get Your Website Name (Buy Your Domain)
You have now set up your business structure and registered now you want to set up up a website and it starts with buying your domain or www.whateveryourbusinessiscalled.com. The most popular place to search and purchase websites/domains is Godaddy. The cost is usually on one or two year basis where you will see the savings on a two year agreement. They do offer websites as well, please take a look if you feel like you see something you like, might be easier to deal directly with them. If you are going to be serious in business you will need a real website so do not go cheap here, buy it a buy a good one. Total cost of a website $11.99 for first year (You will get e-mail addresses with this purchase)
Step 4 Design Your Logo + Brand Colors using Canva
Now that you have your website you will need to fill it with your products or offer, but first you need to establish your identity which means you need to build your logo which includes also includes picking your brand colors. Canva has made it super easy for anyone to create a logo, click on this link here to see what you can create. You can upload photos, create logos, memes, etc. You can also create other marketing materials like flyers and social media content with your existing pictures, very easy to use, user friendly and if you need tutorial click here. Total monthly cost of Canva Pro $12.99
Step 5 Set Up Your E-mail List
One of the most important and critical things a new business can do is collect e-mail address of your clients and potential clients. One of the oldest forms of digital marketing but also one of the most best ways to interact and potentially market to your customers. There are 2 major players in this space one being Mail Chimp which allows you to have a free account for up to 2000 e-mail addresses (we like mail chimp). The other would be Constant Contact which is good as well, but I am not sure about the starter rate (free) so please take a look here. Total Cost of Mail Chimp FREE (for first 2000 e-mail addresses)
Step 6 Set Up Website
You will need to set up a website ( hint try to find one that offers hosting too, because hosting is a whole other blog post, lets keep this simple) through a designer (which can be expensive and sometimes a headache) or have one that you can build yourself also call a "plug and play" design which means the will provide you a template or the bones of the website and you will add pictures and other relevant information. We have used word press which can be a little difficult if you are not familiar with it, if you want to learn how to set up a word press website click here. We have also used weebly which is super easy and they provide hosting, it cost around $15 per month. Total Monthly Cost $15
This is just some of the basics of starting a business, you will still need to do several other things to make sure your business succeeds. You can see we are easily under $600 for everything I mentioned above. I always want to say that my experience is just that, and is subjective, as your city or state might operate very differently. I am only trying to plant seeds of success, you all need to do the watering daily. Peep the extras down below.
Sellers Permit/Wholesale License is Free and usually issued through the state which is where you will also pay your sales tax For more information on how our (LA) works click here
Use Google Voice for free, you get a local number that allows text messages as well as sending photos. You can forward to your mobile phone or preferred
Learn about drop shipping and how it can be an option if you need to sell something but no money for inventory
If you want to protect your logo, business name, and phrases associated with your business you will want to apply for a trademark which can be found here
Homies the holidays are here and this is the time to make some bread, and I know of a fairly easy hustle to get going for little to no money. Everyone is getting in the Christmas spirit and that means Christmas lights. Right now there are several new and old homeowners who either don't know or don't want to get up on the a ladder and hang those lights which translates into a great opportunity to make some money and buy gifts for your loved ones. I know I know, this is not your typical hustle but according to www.homeadvisor.com the average job is over $400 per house and depending on how detailed you are and the type of services you provide you can earn up to $1200 per home. So now comes the second question How do I get started? Well I will always speak on what "I" would do and not giving advice, so what I would do is:
You One of the hardest things for a hustla to do is mind his or her own money, shit we are competitive so it is very natural to want what someone else has. Every hood and every city has a "Hood Star" and trust me they rotate almost every 5 years so, why you ask? Because the game is very high risk and the probability of the homie getting locked or robbed is high which can take even the best of us, out. So even if you are in the H-town, AZ or Florida hustles and hoods all look like and there is a hood star you can probably learn a lot from. So why should you pay attention to your bag rather than his/her:
1. Your do not know why they are being blessed so work on your blessings instead, wish them well and don't mess with your karma by hating on them on the low.Everything is about Karmic balance, and hating or being envious is not good for your bag. Also you do not know what good they did for them to receive the blessings that they are currently receiving.
2. You can learn a lot from everyone in the hood,especially the hood star, who is usually a bonafide hustler or has the plug. Before you start to hate, see what you can learn from them as they are in the streets just like you. Get your network up.
3. You should be busy working on your own dream, setting up your LLC or going to city hall getting your business registers. It is easy to get sidetracked focusing on someone else's hustle, but if you are able to focus and "lock in" on your hustle, you will see it blossom, when you are focused on theirs, their bag will grow and so will your jealousy.
4. They probably feel the same way you do, they probably see you too, most of the time we are envious of people who might have some advantages, however they might be hating on you for something that you have like how tall you are or anything, so don't trip as God blessed us all with an advantage we just need to figure out our gifts, we all have them.
5. You have your own bag and its coming, the one thing I try to let everyone know is that God has a Bag for all of us, so be patient and wait on yours. Sometimes you have not received your bag because you are not ready to receive it. God is not in the business of wasting bags, so when you are ready your bag will be ready and you will be mentally ready enough to maintain it.
Duane Cofield over 15 years selling Cocaine from the age of 11 in the gritty streets of South East San Diego. I know the "game" in and out and very few can show me something new..I am now a business owner and professor of business a a few Southern California Universities. I am available for consulting, speaking, coaching. Please subscribe to the Official Drug Dealers to Businessmen You Tube Channel Here