I remember my first entrepreneur day at school. My 10-year-old mind was filled with creative ideas to make a stack of cash. £10 to be precise. I decided on clay figurines that my mum helped me bake in the oven.
I painstakingly painted these figurines and it took days. But I had it covered: simply price them higher. I shared a table with a classmate, and it was soon clear that her humble 5p-per-cupcake business was going to get her to £10 faster than my £1.50 figurines would.
She sold out in under an hour because she understood her market, priced her items right, and had a product that was simple, cheap and easy to manufacture. I, on the other hand, didn’t sell a thing.
Kids can incorporate an element of fun into making their own money, which goes far beyond the cliched lemonade stand or getting paid to do their chores. Some kids go the extra mile though, and serve as entrepreneurial gurus.
Sell toys on Ebay
Henry Patterson discovered at the age of five that by marketing his old toys a little differently, he could sell them at a good price. This afforded him the money he needed to buy some new toys. It also developed his understanding of entrepreneurship, showing him he needed to keep money aside for taxes and new stock.
Henry is now the proud owner of several businesses. The first, Not Before Tea, is based on a book he wrote titled The Adventures of Sherb and Pip. He has since launched an entrepreneurial platform called Young & Mighty which teaches children the fundamentals of making money as a kid. He also launched Zellie Zipper, a bag brand that solves the issue of stagnant fashion by changing colour simply by pulling a zip.
For the young entrepreneur inspired by Henry’s sales tenacity, it’s important to remember that he started small. A Ben-10-figurine-on-a-tractor small. It’s also important to remember to reinvest the money you make back into the business to allow it to grow.
Use your coding skills
This may seem like a skill for older kids, but basic coding is easy to master even for those in lower grades. Creating a simple website or software is far easier than it seems, especially for kids in the digital age. It’s even better if you’re able to identify a gap in the market.
Nina Devani started her software business, DevaniSoft, when she was just 14. Her software is designed to help password management and the idea came about when her father’s Facebook account got hacked. Today, Nina’s company employs developers and coders to ensure her software remains relevant and up to date.
Kids who find themselves coding before bedtime and creating websites for their friends can easily monetise their skill. They could start by helping peers set up their own websites, social media accounts, and online profiles.
Create content for your peers
One of the best ways to make some extra money is to provide content that your friends would like. For instance, starting a YouTube channel and reviewing toys (yes, I’m looking at you, Ryan) or following in the footsteps of Jenk Oz. At the age of eight, Jenk realised that there wasn’t enough curated content for children between eight and 15.
This multi-talented youngster curates playlists, creates unique music and video content, and also has a production facility and studio. The iCoolKid brand is looking to expand into clothing soon, which will create another revenue stream for the young CEO.
If you have a flair for the musical or have a special talent that you know your peers will enjoy, you might consider creating content around it. For instance, you could create content for your youth group or football club.
Make your hobbies work for you
When Kate and Annie Madden were just 15 and 13 respectively, their love of horses led them to start their business empire: an equestrian supplement that helps prevent ulcers in horses. The pair realised that their combination of herbs and spices had a positive effect on the acidity regulation in horses. Because the products don’t contain any banned substances, the horses could use them even on show days.
For the pair, their love of horses was the missing ingredient to launch a business that is now supported by royal families across the globe.
While not all children may have a flair for understanding the digestive issues of horses, the lesson here is simple. A hobby or pastime could result in a business concept. For instance, a love of pets could result in a pet walking or grooming business. From there, who knows where the business might go?