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Wanting to go from hobby to job.

Gary.r

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Hi
Have been flying for a while now but interested in taking it to the next level
from my hobby to my job, so thought this was the place to start.
Understand this is a big jump so all info welcome.....thank you.
 
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BigAl07

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My first suggestions:

1) don't "go all in" and spend $$ you can't afford to lose. It's easy to go in debt for the shiny new equipment, branded car/truck/suv, and so much more. Don't do it. Build the business and buy with cash as you can afford it. Operating debt free gives you a lot of wiggle room for when things are tough.

2) Don't quit your day job until you have a proven customer base lined up and you have several months of bank deposits that support quiting.

3) Don't give your products/services away. IF you don't value your work, someone else won't either.

Good luck :)

Allen
 

Aerial Edge

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My first suggestions:

1) don't "go all in" and spend $$ you can't afford to lose. It's easy to go in debt for the shiny new equipment, branded car/truck/suv, and so much more. Don't do it. Build the business and buy with cash as you can afford it. Operating debt free gives you a lot of wiggle room for when things are tough.

2) Don't quit your day job until you have a proven customer base lined up and you have several months of bank deposits that support quiting.

3) Don't give your products/services away. IF you don't value your work, someone else won't either.

Good luck :)

Allen
This is solid advice. I started my Business as a side job to build slowly and exit out of my industry. I ended up finding a posting as a drone pilot to perform infrastructure inspections while looking for contract work. I ended up doing that, the information and experience in itself and the ability to fly some amazing platforms was an opportunity I could not pass up. It has limited my Business opportunities due to conflicts of interest for now, but since they only do huge contracts and not smaller jobs it works out. Start slow and try to build a customer base. Mine is still small, I did some small jobs for very little money for people I personally know to help build my resume. It actually helped land my full time job. It helps if you are just getting started.
 
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chasco

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Anything with UAV's is visually based and data on the back end. The clients typically don't care about that data unless they are using it inhouse as with a Surveyor, Engineer or General Contractor. Word of mouth is the catalyst in this industry especially in the land development and AEC spaces and websites are unquestionably the best way to convey and market your services.

Define your services very specifically with good high-level descriptions. Once again what we do with drones is foreign to most people so they don't care about the technicalities.

Decide what pricing structure you are going to propose, but be flexible according to the client. Most of our work is and hourly flat rate or contract lump sum, but some developers prefer a per flight billing.

Don't be afraid to make contact and offer a free flight. If you do a good job at a sensible price point they WILL want you back. I can't tell you how many Construction Managers I have shared our internal data with that have contacted us to provide services for them even though we were not performing any construction work.

Of what everyone else has said I would have to agree most with starting slow, but more specifically find good volume clients. If you find someone that gives you repeat business of and pays promptly they are the focus. Building personal relationships with these people is what leads to referral business.
 
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Gary.r

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Really sorry chaps for my late late reply to your much appreciated
reply's. Things have been rather hectic here the last few days
with a family member falling ill so couldn't keep up with everything.
To answer all your questions basically i have only been flying about
6 months so i'm a complete novice compared to you chaps but i fancy
a change of career so thought this section of the Mavic forum a good
place to start. I've just past my A2 CofC and have started looking
into what exact area of the drone industry to look at.
Once again sorry for late reply, i do appreciate your replys.
 
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chasco

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Really sorry chaps for my late late reply to your much appreciated
reply's. Things have been rather hectic here the last few days
with a family member falling ill so couldn't keep up with everything.
To answer all your questions basically i have only been flying about
6 months so i'm a complete novice compared to you chaps but i fancy
a change of career so thought this section of the Mavic forum a good
place to start. I've just past my A2 CofC and have started looking
into what exact area of the drone industry to look at.
Once again sorry for late reply, i do appreciate your replys.
Prayers for your family. Congratulations on passing your test! This is a great forum and depending upon which direction you would like to try there are a number of forums that can be recommended. One of which being the Mavic specific mavicpilots.com. It would probably be more aircraft an photo/videography oriented and this forum is a catch all for commercial use. I would also recommend forum.dronedeploy.com if you become interested in mapping. I moderate there and am pretty much always present. Good luck in your journey!
 
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