Many business owners have goals…
But only the ones who have a plan get ‘em done.
So if you want to turn your gaming and hobby passion into a serious business that pays you to play…
…You’ve gotta set goals to get there.
Before I jump into some easy ways to get started creating your business goals, let me ask you a question:
What is a goal?
Sounds simple enough. But let’s get on the same page, shall we?
Goal: the desired result of focused effort.
Since you downloaded our guide, I’m positive you have one business goal already:
Turn your game and hobby passion into a profitable business.
You wouldn’t go on a journey without a destination in mind (unless you’re a wandering nomad).
Likewise, you wouldn’t jump into an MTG battle without a strategy either (unless you’re a total newb).
So, don’t embark on the road to becoming a gaming/hobby entrepreneur without setting goals first.
I’m telling you this because I want you to succeed. There are thousands of gamers around the globe profiting from their hobbies…and I want you to be one of them.
So how do you set goals that you can actually achieve?
First, do it the SMART way.
The best goals are SMART:
Let’s dig into this.
Your goal must be well-defined.
Vague goals like “start a business” or “learn how to build a video game empire” are not exactly specific. There’s a lot of missing parts in between those ambiguous goals.
Here’s a great goal that’s specific:
“I will create 5 product pages on my video game e-commerce website by tomorrow.”
That’s a goal that is broken down and clear. You have a specific number of product pages to create and you even have a deadline.
Now that you have a specific goal, how will you measure your progress?
This one is easy:
Continuing with the goal from above, if by tomorrow you have 5 product pages up and running on your video game e-commerce website, then you’ve achieved your goal.
Your measure of achievement is getting 5 product pages on your website.
Here’s the goal with measurability:
Your goal has to have some objective way to test whether it has been achieved or not.
Let’s try another.
What if you wanted to have 1,000 new website visitors on your video game e-commerce website. How would you measure that?
Without getting into the specifics, you could use a service like Google Analytics or HotJar or even CrazyEgg to verify how many visitors you have on your website per month. If you’re reaching your desired number, you’ve met your goals.
This element of SMART is meant to keep you from cheating yourself. The data won’t lie.
Either you’ve met your goal…or you haven’t. Period.
But don’t make your goals impossible to achieve. You need to make them…
If your business goals are like fighting Sephiroth from Final Fantasy VII, they may be harder than they need to be.
Your goals should be easy and move you forward towards your larger goals.
So what does this look like?
Let’s say you have a goal to start a YouTube channel for video game reviews.
It’s definitely specific, but you still need to break it down to be attainable.
Here’s how you could break it down:
- Open a YouTube channel
- Start a new channel
- Update the channel profile and name
- Find 1 video game to review
- Record the review video
- Upload and optimize video
- Publish video
You see how your larger goal to start a YouTube channel has now been separated into 8 different attainable tasks?
Each of these tasks can be done in small clusters or even one by one when you have free time.
But how will you know if the tasks you choose are important?
Every goal you set out to achieve needs to push you towards the larger goals in your business.
So it follows that every small goal needs to be related to your larger goals in some way.
So let’s say I have a large goal to make $20k per month. There are many ways to do that, but you need to break down your goals to make sure you’re putting your focus in the right place.
So let’s say you have 3 different goals you want to start out with:
- Build a website
- Start a blog
- Join a mastermind group with other successful gaming/hobby entrepreneurs
Which of these goals is the most relevant towards your goal of $20k per month?
That’s right. The last one.
Because attending a mastermind group of like-minded business owners will help you figure out a strategy that can get you amazing results in the least amount of time.
Now here’s where the concept of relevance becomes clear—all of these goals are important, even necessary, if you hope to start a successful business.
But building a website and starting a blog may not be the fastest way to get there at the outset. You might attend the mastermind and you’ll get this advice:
- Get market validation first
- Build an audience on social media
- Create your website
So in this case, even though creating your website is a priority, it’s not the highest priority. All of these goals are relevant to you goal, but putting them in the right order will help you leverage your time so you’re getting maximum traction for your gaming business before you start heading down rabbit holes.
Ok, so now that you’ve got specific, measurable, attainable, and relevant goals, you need to give yourself a deadline…
Your goals need to have a deadline or else they’ll get lost in the ether.
If you seriously want to start generating a monthly income from your gaming/hobby passion, you need to set goals that will be achieved in a timely manner.
If you say, “My goal is to make money from my hobby this year,” there’s a deadline—but a year is too long. You’ll probably forget about your goal in 2 weeks.
But if you say instead, “My goal is to create a tutorial on how to strategize an MTG team and have it up by Friday for FNM,” now that’s a goal! And you’ve given yourself a specific deadline that must be achieved within a few days.
It’s nearly impossible to fall behind on a goal like this 🙂
Here are some more examples of SMART goals for a gaming and hobby business:
- I will have my e-commerce site fully operational by May 1st.
- I will publish two new articles per week on my blog.
- I will acquire 5 new leads this month through my podcast.
- I will increase my Facebook followers by 100 in the next three months.
Having well-defined, clear goals will help you achieve your objectives…and help your business grow.
Other ways to set your business goals
The SMART approach is a great way to start building a structure around your goals, but there are some other ways to set your business goals in stone.
Commit to Your Goals
There’s a certain level of mindset work that needs to be done if you want to succeed.
Once you create a goal for yourself, you’re gonna notice something interesting:
Your brain is gonna start second guessing your goal!
This is a common problem for new business owners. Creating goals is easy once you have a decent structure in place.
But sticking to your goals is the real test of success.
So once you set your goals, it will be important for you to—
Make a promise to yourself. Tell your friends and family. Share an update on Facebook.
Do whatever you have to do to get yourself accountable to following through with your goal.
If you’ve ever played The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, you know that’s the type of game you have to commit to. You could easily spend over 200 hours before beating it.
Your business goals need THAT level of commitment if you want to start making a living off your gaming hobby.
So set yourself up with an accountability partner and have them check up on you periodically.
And if you do that, you’ll need to do this next step…
You need to give yourself something to work towards. Starting a business can be a long and sometimes challenging process, so give yourself small rewards along the way to keep your spirit and motivation up.
Here’s a great one: splurge on a video game you’ve been wanting or buy that booster box you’ve been eyeing. No guilt. Once you’ve completed a certain number of tasks on your goal list, go ahead and drop some cash on your favorite game.
Then, your next reward could be a full day of guilt-free gaming. You’re gonna need off days, so why not allow yourself to play your new game—uninterrupted and totally free of any nagging guilt?
You’ll enjoy your game better when you know you’ve made significant progress on your business goals 🙂
Develop Your Big WHY
If you have a significant reason for starting a business, you’ll find yourself with renewed motivation to keep going.
One of the difficulties of starting a business is that finding ways to stay motivated can be difficult.
Some think, “I’m not feeling up to it today, I’d rather just order a pizza and get back into making my next awesome deck.”
If you’ve ever felt this way before, you know what it’s like to hit a wall on your goals.
The way to break through this wall is to develop a better reason for starting your gaming/hobby business.
Here are some more reasons that might align with you:
You’re Passionate About Game and Hobby
A lot of people are passionate about game and hobby, but not everyone knows how to turn that passion into a business.
For example, if you can focus your gaming passion into making videos for your business, you’ll be able to rally people around your brand and generate an audience very quickly.
And a passionate audience member usually becomes a passionate customer 😉
You Want to Create a Game and Hobby Community
Playing trading card games or board games with friends and other players is part of the fun of big battle games.
If you particularly love playing TCGs with lots of local friends, your big WHY might be “because I want to bring like-minded gamers into a community where we could collaborate and enjoy the experience of playing new games together.”
Whatever your big WHY is, make sure it helps you renew your motivation when those inevitable downer days pop up.