5 tips for turning your passion into a business

Judith Sun and Andréanne A. Mallette - Source : Eva-Maude tc. Photographer

Nathalie Slight ! Journalist

Andréanne A. Malette is passionate, intuitive and pragmatic, and she's what you'd call an "artrepreneur," or an artist entrepreneur. Spurred on by the success of her Feu de camp (in French only) campfire tour last summer, the singer is adding another string to her guitar by becoming a producer!

1. Believing in your idea
In singing/songwriting and in business, any project starts with a good idea. For Malette, it was wanting to offer an intimate show with guitar, singing and campfires. "The success of my summer tour exceeded all my expectations, and with over 40 shows in campgrounds across the province, I saw an opportunity to expand my idea and produce other artists using the same format."

As someone who loved watching Dragon's Den, she couldn't help but feel that a student, a mother, a retiree or an artist like herself could turn a good idea into a great business!

2. Seeking out advice
For Malette, including other artists besides herself in the Feu de camp shows came with lots of questions. "I met with an attorney who specializes in business law, and he advised me to incorporate my business to create a separate entity, to separate Andréanne A. Malette the artist from the tour I produce. For now, the benefits are definitely legal, with insurance, but eventually, there might be tax benefits, too. Of course, incorporation comes with expenses, and a bit of trepidation, I have to admit, but it's a step I need to take if I want my business to be successful."

3. Getting in start-up mode
Another important step for the artist: opening a business account. "I went to Desjardins, to the same caisse where I opened my very first account when I was little, in Granby! I trust them. If I need advice, I know I'll get good support. Now, when I access my Desjardins profile through AccèsD, and just below my personal account, I see my business account, I feel a touch of pride!"

4. Learning about business
Malette definitely has an entrepreneurial spirit, but she's first and foremost an artist, which means that she has to learn to manage her business effectively. "I recently took some training on various forms of business ownership, and small business taxation. Because I'm on the road so much, I listen to audio books on marketing and management when I'm in the car. I'm self-taught when it comes to entrepreneurship, so I use everything at my disposal to learn."

5. Planning for the future 
In the next few weeks, Malette will be announcing the program for her 2017 Feu de camp tour. Campground owners, summer event managers and private clients throughout Quebec will be booking the shows she's offering. "This summer, there'll be 4 of us artists travelling throughout the province. Maybe we'll double that next year."

For more information on the 2017 Feu de camp tour, go to www.andreanneamalette.com (in French only)

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