Saturday, September 04, 2004

Micro Entrepreneurship

Eric Sink has written an excellent article on his plans to start a micro-ISV (independent software vendor).

Eric was fascinated with the world of one-man software companies, and his interest comes through in his writing.

That got me to thinking about the world of micro-entrepreneurship.

I'll define micro-entrepreneurship as a one-person company that has a scalable business. That means no professional services; a one-person services company is a freelancer.

I come from the traditional Silicon Valley world, where you raise a couple of million in venture capital, build a team, and spend 1-2 years building a product before you launch.

In comparison, Eric spend 1 month of after-hours time to launch his first product, "Winnable Solitaire," a standard Solitaire product with the clever twist that every hand is winnable.

The rise of the Internet and the death of distance have dramatically increased the opportunities for micro-entrepreneurship. A Web site can cost as little as $6 per year for the domain name and $4 per year for hosting.

But what about folks who, like me, can't code? What can we do that is scalable?

One possibility is to produce content. An author, for example, is a micro-entrepreneur because her work product is scalable. With the proliferation of blogging, authorship is easier than ever.

Another possibility is to design a product, but outsource the manufacturing and fulfillment, as with an ODM.

What possibilities can you think of?

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