Oh, blissful retirement! Is it a reality or is it a myth?
You planned it all out – endless vacations, hobbies you finally have time for, and no alarms ringing at the crack of dawn. And voila! You finally retire!
But instead of relaxation and joy, you find restlessness and boredom knocking on your door. Or, you may have just discovered that the retirement savings weren’t enough to sustain the lifestyle you dreamed of. Or worse still, you might be missing the routine workplace hustle, the purpose, the morning coffee interactions.
If any of these signs are squeaking louder for your attention, you may have fallen into the quirky category of ‘Failed Retiree’.
Fear not, you’re not alone, and it’s not as dire as it sounds. It’s merely an inner alarm sounding off, telling you it’s time for…
Kind of like a do-over, Retirement: Take 2! is where you reintroduce elements of work, social interaction, or new habits to create your version of retirement.
To assist you on your new, exciting journey, I’ve got 5 fun and profitable business ideas for your consideration. Use these to get your own creative juices flowing, or grab one and take it for a spin.
I’m glad you asked! A few reasons:
I put a lot of thought, marketing insight and even some brand brainstorming into each of these business ideas – by standing in your shoes.
Each of these business ideas meets my criteria for being specific, practical, and – cha-ching! – profitable.
One thing’s for sure: you don’t want to be chained to a desk all the livelong day, now that you’ve graduated to retirement!
Whether it’s teaming up with friends or getting in steps with a furry companion, supporting local businesses or meeting new people, these ideas pull together other enjoyable aspects of daily life.
And finally, for each of these business ideas, you’ll find resources such as articles and online courses to expand your knowledge and training, along with marketing tips to make your business stand out as THE best choice in the crowd.
Now let’s dive in!
The coaching industry exploded over the last 10 years, with approximately 23,000 certified life coaches in the US today.
New coaches in particular need help promoting their services and growing their client base. As a virtual marketing assistant, your job is to execute the marketing plan, not devise one. So pressure’s off there!
The most effective digital marketing activities for coaches include email marketing, guest blogging and social media marketing. These tasks also happen to be time-consuming, and not so easy to outsource.
By specializing in marketing services tailored specifically to coaches, you can position yourself as an expert in this niche yet sizable market and attract clients who need a reliable, skilled and resourceful marketing VA.
To get acquainted with the terrain, I recommend Coach Pony’s free Couch Training guide.
For free online training, check out The Virtual Savvy.
Sure, you could market yourself as an “admin assistant” or “operations manager.” But a multitasking extraordinaire? Now we’ve got a real picture of who you are and what you’re capable of! This is a great example of shining your own beacon of professional light in a sea of so-so sounding prospects.
I’ve worked with a couple nonprofits myself and can attest to the fact that multitaskers are deeply appreciated. Throw in “resourceful, creative problem-solving, passionate team-player” and you’re really speaking their language!
Since many nonprofits are funded by memberships and donations, I recommend getting acquainted with popular membership management platforms such as MemberClicks, Classy and Wild Apricot. Try a demo or free trial to get familiar with this type of software.
Read up on all-things-relevant to nonprofits. For example, Wild Apricot’s blog is brimming with resources on marketing, organizational management, and fundraising ideas.
I recommend these two simple steps for landing a client or two:
Mention why you’re reaching out and detail a few ways you could help. Be totally honest – even mention you’re a “failed retiree” and want to put your skills and passion to use, but only for the right organization. Keep it short, and personable. Follow up in two to three days.
You might be thinking… Hey, wait a minute. This sounds like a job I’m applying for. But it’s not – it’s a service you’re offering. It’s up to you whether you call yourself a freelancer or a business owner (they’re really one and the same) and ultimately, you need clients to be in business, right?
I just heard another – YET ANOTHER – story in the news about senior fraud.
You know this already – older adults are especially vulnerable to scams. In fact, over a quarter of financial fraud victims are over 60, according to the FTC. Coupled with that, seniors often struggle with managing their finances and navigating the complex world of retirement planning.
Here’s where you can help – not as a financial advisor (unless you hold the proper credentials, of course!) but as a financial advocate, someone who is chosen to manage money matters, such as paying bills, managing property, and handling taxes. A financial advocate may be a paid professional, or a trusted friend or relative.
For this idea, I recommend exploring the National Counsel on Aging: Connect, You can become a facilitator using toolkits and guides offered here. For example:
Khan Academy’s Financial Literacy also offers life skills on detecting scams and fraud.
If you live in a dog-friendly neighborhood like I do, you’re basically surrounded by potential furry clients!
And, if the idea of getting dragged through the hills with a Rottweiler isn’t your cup of tea, you can be choosy. Want to be an exclusive walker of lapdogs? Anything is possible.
While many cities don’t require any special license or permit to walk dogs, you’ll want to check with your city or county for local license requirements.
Consider taking a First Aid Class for pets. The Red Cross offers this class online ($25). Try Googling “pet first aid and CPR class near me” to find other training options – preferably in person so you can ask questions, meet others and network!
Ah. Remember the days when you called customer service and someone actually picked up the phone?
I predict a return to those days. Maybe not for the Comcasts and the Verizons of the world, but for local businesses that want happy, repeat customers. Well, YOU can be that service!
This is a slightly less flexible business idea, assuming your services would be needed during normal business hours. But it’s certainly a “work from home” option, and if you team up with a couple friends, you can alternate shifts, and maybe even build a fun and lucrative business together.
And just remember, you offer clients something the competition simply cannot: friendly, personalized answering services by and for locals!
Here’s a great article by Grasshopper, a virtual phone software.
Identify real businesses in your area you’d like to serve. Those that risk losing business without a live receptionist include: home improvement and repair companies (roofers, plumbers), lawyers, veterinarians, and health and wellness services.
Become knowledgeable in these specific businesses by visiting their websites (and their competition) so you can “speak their language.” Look at their Yelp pages to see what customers like (and dislike!).
List all the benefits these businesses will get from your services. These might include increased aquisition and retention, more positive online reviews, and peace of mind knowing they’ve got the phones covered – especially during busy hours, lunchtime, and possibly after-hours and weekends.
Once you land an interview, ask for specific details on how you can help improve customer acquisition and retention. For example, do they need someone to make outgoing calls, for a friendly check-in? Come up with your own ideas to share.
More and more individuals are opting out of traditional retirement and embracing what some call “encore entrepreneurship.” I just love this description, don’t you?
And, according to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, a significant number of Americans between the ages of 55 and 74 started new businesses in recent years, driven by a desire to make a difference or build wealth.
I love reading about business success stories – especially deeper dives on how they did it. Here are three women who prove that starting a fresh business venture is possible at any age:
If none of these five ideas float your boat, consider how your hobbies or passions might transform into potential business opportunities. Are there any other business ideas you’ve had and want to revisit? You may also like to check out my megalist of 81 Business Ideas.
Remember, Retirement: Take 2! is an opportunity to explore, innovate, and contribute in ways you might never have imagined.
Do you consider yourself a failed retiree? How are you dealing with that? Is Retirement: Take 2! On your radar? What’s your next big idea? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!
Tags Encore Careers