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December 6, 2008, 05:36 PM
OK, here's what is on the other guys' lists:

FranNet (a middleman company for the franchise industry) claims the following are "recession proof":
Dry Cleaning -Hair Salons - Residential and Commercial Cleaning -Home Improvement Companies - Temporary Staffing Agencies - IT and Technology Services - Mobile Storage Units - Children's Educational Services/Tutoring -

And they can hook you up with the right franchise. OK.

According to Entrepreneur Magazine, the best bets are: Collection Agency, Health Agency, Computer Repair, Resume Services, Vending.

Then there is the current Newsweek picks: Ice Cream, like Ben and Jerry's have little to fear, lipstick and nail salons, GAMES, such as Grand Theft Auto, liquor and carryout stores, funeral parlors, etc., etc.

These are Big NAME outfits, and you can find 1001 other opinions about what is a good business to be in during a recession. I've observed that 99 out 100 of these "lists" are done by writers...not business people who have been through a recession and actually started a business.

Also, many of these "perfect" businesses require huge investments or huge knowledge. Where is the realism? Well, it's gonna be right here in just a moment.

Listen, YOU can start or expand a business in hard economic times. Which ones? Four have been the traditional go-to business are:

1) Real Estate (and maybe if you want, it still can be...but it's not all that easy)
2) Information Publishing
3) Specialty Products sales
4) Specialty Services

For this discussion, I'll skip Real Estate.

ONE specialty service that seems saturated but has plenty of room in it is the dating/love/hookup services. Put people together and make money. SOARS during a recession.

INFORMATION? Whatever helps people save money, make money, save expenses, make money, save money...get it?

Specialty Products. Here is where fortunes are to be made, and you'll see some 70's items come back into vogue (I know, I'm working on a couple of them)... products that help people save money, save energy (which is saving them money).

Also, the easy solutions to weight loss, feel-good, spiritual type things...you'll see a rapid rise in Astrologers, Rune Readers, Palm Readers etc. Anyone who can "peer" into the future and report that all is going to be alright will probably have more business than they can handle.

Escapism, including movies but now more like GAMING, all those things that have stay at home ENTERTAINMENT value are going to be OK. As will EDUCATIONAL products that help people learn a new trade or skill that will help them be wanted in the job markets.

Entertainment, education and ease of life products will be HOT for the next three years.

So, I open the floor for further discussion, including what businesses you probably don't want to be in either.

Is your business recession proof or is it a business that is recession acclerated?

Gordon Jay Alexander

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