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Re: Working for yourself as a PC tech

Grant Robertson
Posts: n/a
In article <(E-Mail Removed)>, Removed) says...
> In this terrible job market, it is obvious that it's time to work for
> myself.
> For those doing basic computer repair, how do you market yourself?
> How do you set rates?
> What are your most common service calls?
> Do you have a "store front" or do you do pickup/delivery/onsite?
> Any other advice?

If you do good work then the most important thing will be marketing. Once
you get the customer's computers working reliably they won't have much
reason to call you until they mess something else up. Most people these
days still try to do everything themselves on their computers and only
call for help when they hit a brick wall. All of my customer's rave about
me but I still get very little referral business. People just don't call
until they absolutely can't use their PC any more. By then they don't
remember the referral. If you don't already have a marketing plan in
place and the money to carry it through for a full year then forget about
it. You might be able to pick up some money on the side but not enough to
live on. Believe me.

Keep your day job. Work out of your home for as long as possible.
Customers want you to come out to their location anyway.

Remember, everybody and their brother is thinking the same thing you are.
And many of them already know the things you are asking about. They know
how to market and sell. They know how to run a business and pay their
taxes. These are the people who will succeed. I started my business
before the dot-com bomb, 9-11, and all the layoffs. I was doing really
well for a while. When the economy tanked small businesses just stopped
spending money on their PC's. Now they only call when things grind to a
complete halt or they absolutely need an upgrade for some new software
they are buying. Plus now the market is flooded with guys who have been
laid off from $70k a year jobs with great severance packages and plenty
of savings to invest in advertising. These guys have been working on
really high end stuff that sounds impressive to small business owners and
can talk a line of BS a mile long. If you feel you can stand up against
that kind of competition then go for it. But if you have to ask the kinds
of questions you are asking in a newsgroup created for one of the lowest
level certifications available then I'm guessing you aren't quite ready
to start a real business.
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