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Stop the Slaughter of Innocents. Congress is bought and paid for by gun lunatics and gun promotion groups. If you want to live in a safe America, help buy Congress back for America. Send a donation to Mayors Against Illegal Guns, 909 Third Avenue, 15th Floor New York, NY 10022

Start Your Own Business Mind Map

Every year millions of jobs are outsourced or automated out of existence. In today's and the future economy, getting a job is way more difficult than before these two forces set in. That's why every year millions of people are deciding to start their own business. One of the first steps required to start your own business is to decide what kind of business to start.

Decide what kind of business to start is easy if you have a passion for, or a talent for a particular type of work, provided there is a demand for that skill or talent. But what if you don't know what kind of business to start? One tool frequently used by business to make decisions is the mind map.

A mind map is a graphical method where you study a question or idea by writing the idea in the center, and building a map of associated ideas around it. Mind maps are very dynamic. If you asked ten people individually to draw a mind map around the same idea, you would get ten different mind maps. And each of those mind maps would be subject to growth and rearrangement.

Start Your Own Business Mind Map

Here, I'm presenting my version of a mind map of businesses you can start. You can use this to decide what kind of business to start, or you can use it as a starting point for designing your own mind map. If you have any ideas of what could be added to this mind map or what could be changed, I would love to hear from you.

The standard way of thinking about the different types of businesses is that you provide either a service or a product, and that you provide either your own service or product, or you sell someone else's product or service. But in my mind map, I've separated out "Advertising" and "social" as also being top business categories, even though they properly belong in the services category.

Follow along the "product" path in the mind map. If you want to develop your own product, it can be "consumable", such as a food product or a cleaning product, or it can be "durable". Durable refers to things like cars or appliances where they last a long time before they need to be replaced. A digital product could be something people download, which has the advantage of highest ROI (Return On Investment).

If you choose to sell other peoples products, you can buy wholesale and sell retail, which gives you a good profit, but requires you to hold inventory. Or you can be an affiliate, which gets you a small commission, but you don't have the expense of holding inventory.

Follow along the "service" path in the mind map. If you want to provide your own service, you can be a designer (for example websites or software), or you can provide marketing (which might take you over to the "social" and "advertising" branches), or you can provide content (be a writer). Of course if you want to start an offline business there are almost an infinite number of services that you can provide.

Follow along the "social" path in the mind map. I identify a business as "social" when it involves primarily with communicating and working with other people on the Internet. With a "Freelance" business, you would bid for work on freelance websites. With an "Auction" business you would sell products to the highest bidder on auction websites. "blogging" or "bookmarking" would be where you market a product or service on blogs or social bookmarking sites.

The types of businesses on the "social" path could also be starting a freelance, auction, blog, or bookmarking website. In this case it would require time or monetary investment to build up traffic before such a business would be successful.

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