Starting a creative business can be tough. In fact, it can seem even tougher if you haven’t gone to business school and haven’t been taught business basics. To you, your business as an expression of your art. Your contribution to the planet and your source of income. But there is one issue you have no money to start with.

So how do you start your creative business with no money?

Many of my clients have been stuck, believing it is not possible to start a creative business with no money.  Well, the good news, this is an incorrect assumption.   There are a number of hacks which allow you to get started with little or no money. Here are the 3 skills  you will need to successfully start your creative business with no money.


The truth is there is a vast array of businesses that can be started on little or no cash! You just need to know the 3 skills that allow you to make a business a success when you don’t have a money tree to pick from.


 No Money Tip #1: Sales


Focus on selling. In fact, more importantly, let pre-selling be your friend. If you do not have a lot of money then pre-sell to fund development. Authors do this regularly, selling a book before it is written, to enable people to have the very first copy as soon as it is published. If you do theatrical plays you may wish to market the play very early so the early bird ticket can fund some of the production costs. Find creative ways to let your sales fund your business growth. Prioritise this.  After all it far more important than your “pretty” logo.


No Money Tip #2: Negotiation


Sharpen your negotiation skills. Your ability to negotiate a brilliant deal will enable you to get the most from each £ you spend.

This means first understanding that every number (not just price) is a negotiation point. So stop just negotiating on price.  Why not consider also negotiating on delivery times, perhaps you can afford to wait a lot longer for a provider for example.  Rather than simply asking for it to be cheaper, perhaps, position that it can be cheaper because you can wait and have a later delivery date.  Or agree longer term payment plans with your clients if they are willing to wait a little longer for delivery. Giving you more time to inspire and create new products.

If you struggle with negotiation check out the Business Bites interview with Simon Horton author of Negotiation Mastery.


No Money Tip #3: Frugality


It is easy to spend money.

Just because you have cash, doesn’t mean that you have to spend it.  Explore other avenues which will achieve the same result at a fraction of the price.  For example, there are great content management tools which allow you to send emails to highly segmented audiences and costs hundreds of pounds a month. However, if you are starting up, likely to only use a fraction of the functionality of such a system. Furthermore, there are other tools which do the job to the level you require for no investment or nominal monthly investment. Collaboration Club members will have access to an extensive list of cost-effective tools.

The key here is to scrutinise your spending, ask yourself is there is a more cost effective way. Ask yourself, if the purchase you are looking to make is essential. Focus your attention on generating revenue, as your business grows you can extend further investment.