Recently, I had the chance to sit down with Ewa Chodakowska to talk about her journey as the fitness entrepreneur in Poland. I wondered: How did her passion for fitness lead her to not only owning a gym but multiple brands including a running a magazine that covers everything from healthy catering to training programs, a fashion line and more?

Here are my five learnings from Ewa on how to start a business by finding your passion:

1. Passion - Your love for the game

Depending on what you love, your passion should:

  • Embody your strengths
  • Enrich your life
  • Come naturally to you
  • Be part of your lifestyle
  • Give you drive when you fall

The last one is crucial. It’s not easy to build a business. Your passion should, therefore, be so motivating that it keeps you going when times get tough.

It’s like choosing your favorite sport.

2. Target market - Find your audience

Think about who you want to add value to. Who do you have a unique connection to? You might even be part of your own target market.

The things that come most natural to you will be most valuable to your audience.

Does your passion influence your life? If yes, you want to bring this value to your market.

Understand their needs and how your passion can satisfy them.

How to start a business -finding your passion - Ewa-Chodakowska-Adidas-athlete-interview-Sina Port-business-athlete-Personal Branding- passion -shebreaksbarriers
Her passion gave Ewa the chance to change lives through sport.
How to start a business -finding your passion - Ewa-Chodakowska-Adidas-athlete-interview-Sina Port-business-athlete-Personal Branding- passion -shebreaksbarriers
As a multi-passionate entrepreneur, Ewa had to choose the biggest passion which had the most impact.
How To start a business - Ewa-Chodakowska-Adidas-athlete-interview-Sina Port-business-athlete-Personal Branding- passion -shebreaksbarriers
Ewa was never afraid to risk things, fall down, get up and change her direction.
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3. Value - How you bridge the gap

Your passion is not only the value you give. It’s a tool for change. How will you impact your audiences’ lives? Dig deeper than just ‘teach them tennis’ or ‘improve their fitness’. Define what you’ll support them to transform. Understand the aspirations and visions you’ll help them realize.

To start a business which delivers real value, ask yourself: Who does my audience want to become? Then write down how you can help them achieve it through your passion.

Your business’ value is the gap between where your audience is and where they aim to be.

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4. Product - Your tool for impact

Your product embodies your passion, is made for your audience and delivers your value. I asked Ewa how she was able to transform her love for fitness into a variety of products. Her answer: “Own it!”

Many influencers put their faces on products, often without knowing what’s in it or what goes behind it.

Own it from production to distribution. Because the more you bring yourself into your products, the better they will perform.

You are unique. When you start a business and bring your whole self into it, your audience will recognize it as uniquely valuable.

5. Messaging - Creating a connection

Your content

To transform your passion into a profitable business, keep communicating the value behind it. That’s your content.

Content marketing will help you build relationships that make people care, through digital tools like blogs, videos or podcasts. Successful content comes by reverse-engineering your audience’s needs:

  • What do they need and how can your business provide it to them?
  • Why do they need it in the first place?

Make people care, by caring for people. When your audience cares about your business, they will buy into it.

Start your business by committing to add value. Ewa wrote up to 30,000 private messages to the women with whom she shared her training program for free. She built trust with the quality of her content and the consistency of her personalized communication.

Your communication

I was smiling when Ewa said she was “obsessed” with her audience, but actually it shows. Her emotional connection with her followers is reflected in their comments, community building or purchases.

You might experience it yourself with someone you admire but have never met. You connect to them because they constantly communicate with you through a blog or social media.

Communicate with your audience genuinely, by listening and responding. Listen to their questions and doubts and answer them directly, or through the content you produce. And do it consistently. That’s how you start a business. A constant connection to your followership builds trust and loyalty, which equals profits.

Podcast

Tune into the conversation I had with Ewa (23 min)

What's the passion you'd like to turn into a business? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!

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