If you’ve had a reading by a professionally certified hand analyst, you know it changed your life! When that happens it’s natural that you want to go deeper into the process that so changed your life.
That is what happened to me! I had a hand reading in the Spring and by the Fall I was enrolled in a year-long certification program to become a hand analyst. At the time I had only a few vague ideas about becoming a professional hand reader. While I’m so glad to do the work I do today, helping palmists and others like them build businesses using the code in their hands, there are still a number of things I wish I’d known before I hung out my shingle. Here they are.
- How patient are you? Building a palmistry business takes time and steady devotion. My first company was making a profit within 6 months and I had more than 10 years’ experience in corporate sales and marketing so I thought setting up and running a palmistry business would be a piece of cake. I spent a ton of time on things like logos and color schemes and jumping from one goal to another – this was time I should have spent focusing on one goal at a time.
- Who do you serve? Resist the urge to be everything to everybody. I know you’ve heard it a million times, but the easiest way to build your palmistry business is to focus, either on a specific clientele or specific results. The surest way to burn out and go broke is to try to help everyone who has hands. (Ask me how I know this.)
- What are you really offering? Clarify the features and benefits of your services so that you know what you want to offer and how you want to offer it.
- What are you willing to do? Decide what type of palmist you want to be. Do you want to make your money on the road doing fairs and wine shows? Would you rather work big corporate events and parties? Perhaps you want to focus on being the reader in a well-known local shop? You could also focus exclusively on one-to-one readings by phone or in person. While you don’t have to etch these decisions in stone, it’s a good idea to know what you want and don’t want to do to build your business and make money. I spend 80% of my work time doing one-to-one client work and mix up the other 20% with winery events and private parties. In the past I’ve worked at local shops and had some good and some bad experiences. (I’m working on a post on what you should know about becoming a “resident reader.”)
- How much is it worth? Determine your rates. Create your rate sheet and packages or offerings. Once you know how you want to deliver your services (see #5) you can begin to formulate rates, service offerings and packages that serve your preferred clients. Clarify your pricing for classes, workshops and other offerings if you intend to include them in your business.
- How much money do you need? Get up close and personal with your numbers. If you are the sole breadwinner for yourself and your family, spend a few hours up to your elbows in financial projections. Knowing how much money you HAVE to earn to pay your bills and still maintain your quality of life is important. This will help you set your rates, set your working hours and get your butt in gear to make it happen.
- Can you work double-duty? Don’t quit your day job, just yet. First, there is nothing wrong with having a day job or bridge job to make sure you and your family continues to have a roof over your heads. In fact, I applaud your foresight. Just make some clear contracts with yourself if you intend to quit that day job by a certain date. You can definitely run your palmistry business part-time, but you still need to treat it as a business for it to grow.
- What do you want your client’s to feel when they work with you? Create a new client welcome experience package. Have a system for interacting with new clients every step of the way. Include everything from introductory email responses to the actual packet you mail to clients prior to their session. Include your “rules of the road” from the very beginning so client’s know and understand your hours, your scheduling and your boundaries regarding payments and no-shows.
- How organized is your time? Invest in, or create a time management system that allows you to keep overwhelm at bay. This can include systemized emails, a time-scheduling software and a personal/business calendar or bullet journal that can help you stay on track.
- What kind of storage do you need? Decide how you’ll store hand prints. People will want to know what you do with their prints after they’re made. Have a system in place to keep their privacy safe. If you intend to use their prints for any reason, be sure to have a waiver in your welcome package that requests their approval.
- What’s your domain name? Set up your website and have a concrete content creation plan.
- How will you keep in touch with your peeps? Review and set up an email content delivery program (I use Mailchimp) for sending direct newsletters to your list.
- What content will you deliver? Start creating content that appeals to your desired client. Make a list of 24 topics that you can write about and start there. (this will give you enough for two articles in one year!)
- How social are you? Choose your primary social media platform. It’s best to pick a platform that you already use and like. If you use social media, show up consistently. If you aren’t ready to be consistent, it’s best that you don’t dabble. Resist the temptation to try to be everywhere on social media in the very beginning. This doesn’t work!
I know it can seem like a lot, but I promise you, addressing these topics BEFORE you decide to launch your business will help you organize and get traction in your marketplace much more quickly than if you simply jump in and “wing it.”