Do You Believe in Magic?

I blog here, and I also read about blogging. A lot. Recently, I’ve read numerous articles offering tips for more effective blogging on a business blog. Like most non-profit trade associations, NASMM’s mission is two-fold: we must reach the consumer audience searching for senior move managers in their cities and towns, and we must also serve our 600+ dues-paying members who are senior move managers. So we’re different than straightforward B2C or B2B organizations. Trade associations are a hybrid of these two business models, and it’s a battle (oops, I mean challenge) Jennifer and I (along with our nine elected Board Directors) fight/tackle daily.

Several social media gurus suggest answering your most frequently asked questions (FAQs) on your business blog – just for a change of pace. Sounds like a good idea. Each day, the NASMM toll-free line and the website “Contact Us” page are filled with inquiries from consumers and individuals considering senior move management as a next career move. Current NASMM members simply call or email us directly (a perk of membership!).

One question – from individuals who are thinking of opening their own senior move management business – always bubbles up at some point: “How much money can I make doing this?”

Our answer: “It depends.”

Usually a few seconds of awkward silence follows.  Then we say, “It depends on your previous experience starting and owning your own small business. Will you need to acquire basic small business start-up skills at the same time you are learning the nuances of running a senior move management business? No worries if you need to do both, but this info helps us help you.

It depends on your experience working with older adults. Hearing loss, vision impairment, limited mobility, and decision-making stressors are all components of working with an aging population every day. Add to the mix a few adult children weighing in on every decision and you’ve got the picture. Working with older adults and families is hard work.

It depends on how willing you are to market, market and market some more. Relentless, targeted marketing is critical to success for any (and every) small business.  Additionally, marketing a service is trickier than marketing a product. If you don’t enjoy public speaking, shameless self-promotion and marketing to the max, you may want to reconsider the entrepreneur’s path.

It depends on how much you value SMM-specific training, ongoing education and peer networking by joining a trade association like NASMM. It depends on whether you choose to invest in all the association offers.

It depends, too, on your target market: do you live in a somewhat densely populated area, with many potential clients or do you live in a rural setting with few prospects?  Do the math.

It depends on how many senior move managers are already actively serving your area. Sometimes less is more, and sometimes more is more. The answer isn’t always the same.

It depends on the quantity of cash that will define success for you. Some SMMs gross $50K a year, and are thrilled with their bottom line. Others make $500K annually, employ 6 staff members, and are not content with their results.  What’s your goal?

It depends on the thickness of your skin when you are rejected (by potential clients) or challenged (by confused clients and apprehensive family members). Can you hear “No?”

It depends on your flexibility . . . and creativity. Mrs. Charles wants to take her massive armoire AND china cabinet with her to the new assisted living apartment. Only problem? The space is only 400 square feet. Can you say “No?”

So many aspects to consider beyond the few listed here, but it still depends. A single, all-important query remains:

                                                 Do you believe in MAGIC?

Senior move managers perform magic every day. Just ask someone (or their family members), debilitated by the mere thought of downsizing or moving a home of 40 or 50 years. The happy smiles and heart-felt hugs of more than 50,000 senior move clients (last year alone) have only one explanation: it’s magic!
Do you have a question for NASMM?

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