A group of coffee cups surrounded by autumn leaves and pumpkins.

Love it or hate it, three letters have become synonymous with fall. Say them with me: PSL. Yes, pumpkin spice is back – the seasonal sensation that has taken the world by storm. Every year, before the leaves change color even a smidge, we see the return of pumpkin spice lattes, candles, cereals, and even deodorants. It’s a phenomenon that not only marks the arrival of fall but also holds valuable lessons for teenage entrepreneurs.

Timing is Everything

One of the most essential ingredients in the pumpkin spice trend is timing. Just as the weather starts to cool and people are looking for cozy comforts, pumpkin spice products hit the market. Understanding your target audience’s desires and aligning your business with demand is a powerful force in marketing. Whether you’re selling lemonade in summer or hot cocoa in winter, timing is everything.

FOMO is Your Friend

Many businesses use the pumpkin spice trend to create a sense of urgency by offering limited-time versions of existing products. This strategy taps into the fear of missing out (FOMO) and encourages customers to make quick purchasing decisions. As an entrepreneur, you can apply this tactic by periodically offering exclusive deals or products to keep your audience engaged.

Link Your Brand to Brilliance

When you think of pumpkin spice, chances are the first brand that comes to mind is Starbucks. The pumpkin spice latte has become synonymous with the company. This showcases the power of effective branding. As a teenage entrepreneur, building a strong and memorable brand for your business can set you apart from the competition.

Think Outside the Box (or Cup)

Pumpkin spice isn’t limited to just lattes; it’s infiltrated various industries, from food to fashion. This trend encourages entrepreneurs to think creatively and find unique ways to incorporate popular trends into their products or services. Remember, innovation can lead to new markets and growth opportunities.

Joy Can be Sold

A PSL in the hand is more than a drink. After all, there’s little that it’s practically accomplishing. But what is lacks in practicals it makes up with in joy. What can you offer, sell, or package in a way that makes people smile with delight? Find it, and there’s a chance you’ll find a road to success.

The pumpkin spice trend is more than just a seasonal flavor; it’s a business phenomenon that offers valuable insights for teenage entrepreneurs. By understanding the power of timing, scarcity, branding, and innovation, you can apply these lessons to your own entrepreneurial endeavors.

Extra whip, please.

Being a teen entrepreneur can be a daunting task, even in the summertime. But add school, extracurricular activities, and a social life, and juggling everything at once can feel downright impossible. Yet with the right mindset, careful time management, and a dash of creativity, you can run a successful business without abandoning your schoolwork. This week, we’re exploring some business models that are perfect for teens looking to make some extra cash without compromising their academics.

Freelance Services

Freelancing offers a flexible way to earn money while honing your skills. Here are a few areas where teens can excel in their spare time:

  1. Writing: If you’re a wordsmith, consider offering writing services like blog post writing or social content creation.

  2. Graphic Design: If you have an eye for design, offer your services for creating logos, social media graphics, or promotional materials.

  3. Social Media Management: Leverage your social media savvy to help businesses grow their online presence.

  4. Web Development: If you have coding skills, you can build websites for individuals or small businesses.


Get paid to learn? You bet. Use your academic prowess to tutor peers or younger students in subjects where you excel. This can be both profitable and an efficient way to solidify your own understanding of the material.


If you’re artistic, consider selling your creations online. Platforms like Etsy are perfect for selling handmade jewelry, art prints, or even custom t-shirts.

Dog Walking and Pet Sitting

If you love animals, offer dog walking or pet sitting services to your neighbors. This is a pleasant way to earn money while spending time with furry friends.

Lawn Care and Cleaning

Get outdoors and offer lawn mowing, gardening, or general yard maintenance services in your neighborhood. This can be a seasonal business that aligns well with school breaks. Or, turn your elbow grease into cash with a home cleaning service.


If you have a passion for photography, offer your services for events like birthday parties, family gatherings, or senior portraits. You can create a portfolio and promote your work on social media.

Balancing school and business as a teenage entrepreneur is entirely possible with some dedication, time management, and the right concept. Whether you’re offering freelance services, tutoring, or running an online store, these ventures can provide valuable skills and financial rewards.

Time is key. Create a schedule that balances schoolwork, business tasks, and personal time. If the struggle is just too real, don’t forget: prioritize your academic responsibilities over an additional buck.

Back view of a boy standing in a classroom

At Biz Kid$, we’ve made our share of complaints about the lack of financial literacy taught in schools. But the reality is that, while more cut-and-dry money talk in classrooms would be a fabulous development, plenty of the lessons taught by heroic educators do apply to your financial life. Here are a few of the secretly relevant subjects that might surprise you.

Advanced Algebra = Compound Interest

One of the most important lessons of financial literacy is that time is money. The practice of growing money with your money is called compound interest. But calculating compound interest is actually a bit tricky. But guess what? That’s where advanced algebra comes in. Courtesy of Google, here’s the formula for compound interest. Look familiar?

Addition and Subtraction = Budgeting

Making a budget might sound easy, but sticking to one is a different story. One thing that helps? Being able to calculate the impact of a potential purchase on your budget in real time. By doing some basic subtraction, you might decide against your next impulse buy.

Language Arts = Pro Skills

There’s one thing the human race fears more than anything. Can you guess what it is? Public speaking! Those who learn to hone their communication skills have a major upper hand in many entrepreneurial tasks, such as pitching potential customers or investors, writing marketing copy, and building out a website.

Group Activities = Job Practice

In school, group projects teach you the value of working with diverse individuals to achieve a common goal. The friendships you build can turn into valuable connections down the road. Similarly, the business world thrives on connections and relationships. “Networking” can even open doors to potential career paths.

There you have it. Before you think “I never learn anything that I’ll use in real life,” think again. By paying attention to your teachers, you just might learn something that could help you grow your dough and hone your business chops.

A boy holding a bag in hand walking on the street

Yes, adulting is alluring. No sharing the remote with siblings. No nagging about dishes. No parents. Nothing but…freedom? The reality of living on your own isn’t as ­free as it might sound.

Before you pack a single box, it’s essential that you determine if you can afford it. Step one: learning how to budget.

Creating (and keeping) a budget is a crucial life skill that will impact your financial success in the long run. Like a roadmap for your financial journey, a budget helps you keep track of where your money is coming from and where it’s going. Your assignment? Balance. Your goal? More income than spending. Armed with a well-structured budget, you can ensure you’re spending responsibly, saving for your goals, and avoiding unnecessary debt. Let’s get started.

Step 1: Calculate your income.

The first step in budgeting is knowing how much money you have to work with. This includes any allowance, employment earnings, self-employment profits, and gifts. Make a list of all your sources of income and add them up to get your total monthly income.

Step 2: List your expenses.

Next, create a list of your monthly expenses. These can be categorized into fixed (consistent every month) and variable (irregular) expenses. Fixed expenses include things like your phone bill or subscription services. Variable expenses might include eating out, entertainment, and clothing.

Step 3: Define your spending categories.

Next, divide your expenses into buckets. Perhaps they’ll look like this:

    • Necessities: These are the expenses that you need for survival – things like groceries, transportation, and rent.

    • Savings: Allocate a portion of your income towards savings for short-term and long-term goals.

    • Entertainment: Budget for activities with friends, movies, concerts, and other fun outings.

    • Random: Account for unexpected expenses that might pop up, like car repairs or medical bills.

Step 4: Start balancing.

Now it’s time to put it all together. Subtract your total expenses from your total income. If you have money left over, that’s great! Perhaps you can allocate more towards your savings goals. If your expenses exceed your income, you’ll need to adjust your spending in certain areas.

Step 5: Track away.

A budget is only effective if you stick with it. Keep track of your spending as the month progresses. There are plenty of apps and tools that can help you track your expenses, or you can simply use a small spiral notebook. Regularly reviewing your spending will help you stay on track and make adjustments if necessary.

Step 6: Adjust as needed.

As changes occur in your life, you’ll probably need to reflect them in your budget. If you have a change in income or expenses, adjust your budget accordingly. Flexibility is key to a realistic budget.

There, you’ve done it, Biz Kid. You’ve considered the real costs of adulting and set yourself up for something even more valuable than freedom from sibling rivalry: financial freedom.

Looking for more budgeting tips? Check out our Financial Basics page for inspiring videos and actionable activities.

Zuckerberg vs. Musk poster with smiling face

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk are undoubtedly two of society’s most influential entrepreneurial legends. The two visionaries have reshaped entire industries, redefined success, and become icons for aspiring entrepreneurs worldwide. As rumors of a fight (yes, a real, childish, schoolyard-style fight) circulate, we wanted to focus on a different “vs.” — comparing their unique journeys, successes, challenges, and entrepreneurial philosophies to uncover the valuable lessons they reveal.

Origin Stories

Mark Zuckerberg, the co-founder of Facebook, was a Harvard student when he laid the foundation for his social networking giant in 2004. At the time, it was little more than an online directory for Harvard students. Yet a few years late, his idea of connecting people in a virtual space would go global and disrupt the way we interact and share information.

Elon Musk, the brain behind companies like SpaceX and Tesla, was an entrepreneur from a young age. Musk’s ventures began with Zip2, an online city guide he co-founded in 1996. His vision expanded into the realms of electric vehicles, space exploration, and renewable energy, ultimately transforming the future of technology and transportation.


Both Zuckerberg and Musk took enormous risks on their paths to success. Zuckerberg dropped out of Harvard to focus entirely on Facebook, facing skepticism from those around him. Similarly, Musk invested a significant portion of his fortune into SpaceX and Tesla, risking financial ruin if his ventures failed.

Zuckerberg faced legal disputes and controversies over data privacy, yet he adapted to the challenges, turning Facebook into a more robust and responsible platform. Musk’s companies confronted numerous technical and financial obstacles, but his unwavering determination to create a sustainable future kept him going.


Both Zuckerberg and Musk are renowned for their revolutionary innovations that have transformed industries. Zuckerberg disrupted communication and socialization, allowing billions to connect effortlessly. In contrast, Musk revolutionized electric cars and space travel, making sustainable energy and interplanetary colonization plausible goals.

Leadership Styles

As their companies grew, Zuckerberg and Musk demonstrated unique leadership styles. Zuckerberg fostered a culture of “Move Fast and Break Things,” encouraging innovation and risk-taking within the Facebook team. However, as the platform matured, he learned the value of responsibility and privacy.

Musk, on the other hand, is known for his hands-on approach and relentless drive for perfection. He leads by example, working long hours alongside his team, and prioritizes a shared vision to achieve ambitious goals.

Generosity & Impact

In recent years, both entrepreneurs have engaged in substantial philanthropic efforts. Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan established the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, focusing on areas like education, science, and justice reform. Musk has pledged significant portions of his wealth to causes like climate change and space exploration.

Young Entrepreneurs Everywhere

The lives of Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk read like modern-day entrepreneurial sagas. Their stories emphasize the significance of determination, innovation, and resilience on the path to success. As a teen entrepreneur, remember that age is not a limitation. Your vision, combined with relentless effort, can lead to revolutionary changes in the world.

P.S. Our advice? Don’t pick a fight with either of them.

Close up shot of a bay barbie doll with pink shirt

This month, it seems the entire world has been bathed in shades of pink. One of the biggest box office hits in years, Barbie has sent fans to theaters in droves – and offered a reminder to us all the power of a plastic doll that was, once upon a time, just an idea in the head of an innovative entrepreneur.

In 1959, the world was introduced to Barbie, created by businesswoman and inventor Ruth Handler. Ruth noticed her daughter Barbara playing with paper dolls, imagining different roles and identities. Inspired by her daughter’s imaginative play, Ruth saw an opportunity to create a more grown-up, fashion-forward doll that could help girls imagine themselves in various professions and life paths.

Enter Barbie, named after Handler’s daughter, and the world’s first adult-like fashion doll was born. With her strikingly glamorous appearance, Barbie was unlike anything the toy industry had ever seen. Her debut marked the beginning of a revolutionary journey that would shape the toy market and the lives of countless young entrepreneurs.

Breaking Stereotypes and Encouraging Ambition

As Barbie evolved over the years, she became more than just a pretty face. Her extensive career choices challenged societal norms and shattered gender stereotypes. From a fashion model to an astronaut, a doctor, a CEO, and everything in between, Barbie showed girls that they could dream big and pursue any career they desired.

Young people across the globe looked up to Barbie’s versatility. She inspired them to think outside the box, challenge traditional roles, and dream beyond the confines of society’s expectations. Barbie’s ability to adapt and reinvent herself showed teen entrepreneurs that flexibility and adaptability are essential traits for success.

Innovating in Response to Change

As technology advanced, Barbie embraced the digital age with open arms. The Barbie brand expanded to various digital platforms, offering interactive games, apps, and online communities that engaged their young audience in a whole new way. This digital transition provided young entrepreneurs with insight into the power of technology in shaping modern businesses and building connections with consumers.

Barbie’s digital presence also taught teen entrepreneurs the value of staying relevant and adapting to changing times. To succeed in today’s fast-paced business environment, embracing digital transformation and staying connected with tech-savvy customers is crucial.

From her inception to her journey through changing times, Barbie has been more than just a fashion doll. She’s been a beacon of empowerment, a catalyst for change, and an inspiration for young entrepreneurs worldwide. Her ability to adapt, her inclusive nature, and her embrace of the digital era have taught teen entrepreneurs invaluable lessons that continue to shape their aspirations and ambitions.

As for the entrepreneur behind it all? It’s rumored that Ruth Handler was worth $100 million when she died in 2002. Pink has power.

A red light is shining on a clock.
Summer is almost complete. Now how about those summertime goals, Biz Kid?

Chances are, your list of summertime vacation ambitions still leaves many items unchecked. Don’t fret. And definitely don’t throw in the towel. Instead, prioritize.

As the days for poolside Fun Dips come to a close, time is also running out to make a dent in your entrepreneurial or financial to-dos.

Our advice? Run at checking off those items that will benefit from your upcoming busyness – a.k.a. the passage of time.

In other words, if you do nothing else until Christmas break, take actions that will reward you for that lapse of time, rather than give you FOMO. Here’s what we’re talking about:

1.     Get your money working for you.

There are three words we say more than anything else: time is money. Having money sitting idle without making interest is the same as throwing money out the window – especially now. This is an incredibletime for risk-free returns. Reputable (and FDIC-insured) banks are offering as much as 4% in high-yield savings accounts. If you spent the summer earning a paycheck, you can continue to make money without continuing to work. It’s called interest!

These astronauts know what’s up:

2.     Put your entrepreneurial ideas and decisions in writing.

It’s easy to forget everything that you settled on during the last few months. Perhaps you came up with a name for your business, or decided who you’d hire on as you built out your team. Perhaps an uncle gave you an idea for a way to build a quick prototype or MVP. Don’t assume you’ll remember each of those when you have time to pick up your entrepreneurial endeavor again, or think that you haven’t accomplished anything just because you haven’t launched your business just yet. Write it all down in a notebook or Google doc. That way, when the next break comes, you’ll be able to pick up where you stopped.

3.     File paperwork

When you’re in a hurry to start a business or open an account, few things are as frustrating as red tape. Applying for a business permit can take weeks or months. Clearing a patent application takes years. Ditto for filing a trademark application. Let the next few months of busyness work in your favor. Run at completing paperwork, then focus on your schoolwork until you get a response. The worst thing you can do is to wait to file paperwork until you need approval, funding, or next steps.

The bottom line, Biz Kid? If you take a few simple actions while you still have flexibility, time could be on your side. Make it so.

Some small paper clips pasted on face of a person

At Biz Kid$, the rationale behind our passion for children’s financial literacy is simple: the earlier a person learns the pitfalls of debt, the potential of entrepreneurship, and the power of compound interest, the better. After all, time truly is money. Take it from our hosts: compound interest is a powerful force.

But reaching a person in their growing up years isn’t always successful. There’s no shortage of adults walking around with financial literacy-shaped holes in their mindsets. Case in point: the American Psychological Association’s recent report on stress and money. The study found that 72% of Americans “reported feeling stressed about money at least some time in the prior month.”

To help reduce the burden, this week Walmart announced a partnership with the Khan Academy to offer a free online course for their associates to learn such topics as budgeting, saving, loans, insurance, fraud, and taxes.

Sometimes, when two brands get the same idea, it stings. Not this time. Sure, Walmart’s new course hits many of the same points that our online course has been teaching to kids for two years. But we take that as a major compliment. If the APA is finding that 72% of American adults stress about money, we’ll do our best to meet their future respondents upstream. By working together, maybe then next generation will have a bit more peace when it comes to their wallets.

Learn more about our online course for teens here, and check out our abridged 1-hour summer cash crash course here.

Close up image of an ice cream with some sprinkles

One of the sweetest parts about being a young entrepreneur is the opportunity to turn a childhood passion into a profitable business. Case in point: ice cream. We’ve had the joy of featuring several ice cream entrepreneurs on Biz Kid$. If a quick glance at their profiles proves anything, it’s that ice cream doesn’t have to be sold in a store – or on land, for that matter.

In the words of Biz Kid Payson of Cape Code, Massachusetts, “Why settle for an ice cream truck when you can have an ice cream boat?”

For Mik of Mik Mart’s Ice Cream, selling ice cream isn’t actually his dream. Playing junior hockey is. Selling ice cream? That’s a (delicious) means to an end.

As perhaps the two most famous ice cream entrepreneurs of all time, Ben & Jerry need no introduction. But their Biography backstory is worthy of watching:

One type of ice cream entrepreneur that we hope to feature (and sample!) in the future? Ice cream delivery via drone.

So how about you, Biz Kid? What wild idea could you concoct to make ice cream sales anything but typical?

A stack of japanese dollar bills on a red background.

Managing money as a teenager is a daunting task. With so many new financial responsibilities and an entire digital world begging you to spend from the palm of your hand, it’s essential to develop healthy money habits early on. One such habit gaining popularity is called “cash stuffing,” a modern, social media-friendly take on a classic budgeting concept known as the “envelope system.” In addition to sounding (and looking!) cool, cash stuffing can revolutionize the way you manage your finances, while also keeping the tried-and-true principles of the envelope system intact.

What is Cash Stuffing?

Cash stuffing is the latest iteration of an age-old budgeting technique called the envelope system, perhaps made most famous by Dave Ramsey in the 1990’s. It involves allocating a set amount of cash into different envelopes, each designated for a specific category of expenses. These envelopes represent different spending areas, such as groceries, entertainment, clothing, and savings. By physically separating your money into different categories, you gain better visibility over your spending and make it harder to fork over those hard-earned dollars.

Cash stuffing allows you to visually see how much money is available for each spending category, enabling you to plan your expenses accordingly. This method reduces the risk of overspending and helps you stay within your budget. Reborn for the social media age, the newly renamed habit has gained fresh popularity by on TikTok, where crisp bills are sorted into plastic accordion folders as followers look on.

Getting Started with Cash Stuffing

1.  Assess Your Spending: Begin by identifying the key areas where you spend your money regularly. These may include groceries, transportation, entertainment, clothing, and savings. Customize your envelope categories according to your specific needs and financial goals.

2. Set Your Targets: Set realistic spending limits for each category based on your income and financial priorities. Consider allocating a portion of your income to savings or emergency funds as well.

3. Get Stuffing: Withdraw the budgeted amount for each category in cash and divide it among the respective envelopes. Make sure to label each envelope clearly to avoid confusion.

4. Track Your Transactions: Keep a record of your expenses for each category. You can use a simple notebook, a mobile app, or a spreadsheet to record every transaction. Regularly update your records to stay aware of your spending patterns and adjust your budget if needed.

5. Review and Adjust: Periodically evaluate your spending habits and assess whether your budget needs any modifications. Life circumstances and financial goals may change, so it’s crucial to adapt your cash stuffing system accordingly.

Ultimately, the goal of cash stuffing is to make spending more difficult, saving more alluring, and the entire concept of money management more FUN. Game on, Biz Kid? Stuff away.

A person opening his empty pocket

You don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to see that social media has transformed the way we connect, gather information, and seek advice. Among the many voices that dominate our social feeds, financial influencers (a.k.a. “finfluencers”) have emerged as popular figures, hawking advice about how to manage your money, invest, and achieve financial independence. As teenagers navigating the complexities of personal finance, it’s crucial to approach the advice of self-appointed influencers with a good dose of skepticism. After all, your financial well-being hands in the balance.

1.     Charisma is not expertise.

Financial influencers often have a charismatic online presence, captivating followers with their engaging content. But popularity does not always equate to expertise. While some influencers may have achieved personal success in their financial endeavors, their advice may not be universally applicable or backed by professional qualifications. Remember, financial decisions should be based on sound research, extensive knowledge, and expert guidance.

2.     Follow the money.

Behind the seemingly unbiased advice lies a web of hidden agendas. Many financial influencers get paid to promote products or services, often without explicitly disclosing these affiliations. This creates a conflict of interest, as their recommendations may be driven more by financial gain than genuine concern for your financial well-being. Others will claim that the shortest path to riches is a multi-level-marketing scheme that enriches them when you sign up. Always question the motivations behind their recommendations.

3.     Sometimes, it’s complicated.

To appeal to a wide audience and gain popularity, financial influencers often simplify complex financial concepts. While this may make the information more digestible, it can lead to a distorted understanding of important financial principles. Case in point: if you’d only invested in crypto 5 years ago, you’d be rich! Such a claim is easy to make in retrospect. It’s the future that’s hard to predict.

4.     Everyone’s different.

Each individual’s financial circumstances and goals are unique. However, financial influencers tend to provide general advice that may not be tailored to your specific needs. It is vital to remember that what worked for someone else may not necessarily work for you. Instead of blindly following influencer advice, take the time to understand your personal financial situation, consult professionals, and develop a customized approach to managing your money.

5.     Licenses exist for a reason.

Unlike licensed financial advisors who are bound by professional standards and regulations, financial influencers often operate in a regulatory gray area. This absence of accountability can have serious repercussions for their followers. If you encounter a financial setback after following influencer advice, you may have limited recourse or support. Your best bet? Seeking advice from qualified professionals who are accountable for their recommendations.

A girl with money on her head.

Many teens’ lists of ambitions share a common goal: gaining fame on social media. While the appeal of making money from being, well…liked…is obvious, the reality can be much more complex (and potentially disappointing.) But that doesn’t mean there isn’t money to be made on social media. Your first step? Thinking outside the like-lined box.

#1 Become an Influencer

Studies report that 54% of young people would jump at the chance to become an “influencer” if given the chance. Yet for such a widely shared goal, the reality of phone-based fame is less appealing than many may think. The majority of all “influencers” make less than $10,000 per year, and only 1.4% of those who identify as successful influencers become millionaires. Talk about a narrow road to riches! The bottom line? Fame and fortune aren’t as joined as the hip as you might think.

#2 Promote your Business

Perhaps a better use of social media is as a marketing engine. Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram are fabulous places to promote your invention or service business. Share pictures of your artwork, post testimonials of your lawn service, and connect with potential customers and investors – all without leaving the comfort of your own easy chair.

#3 Learn about Saving & Investing

Looking for an out-of-the-box angle to financial freedom on social media? Consider its value as a teaching tool. By following finance expert and inspiring entrepreneurs, you can sharpen your skills as an investor, saver, and maker. Remember: we become the product of those we spend the most time around (virtually or physically).

#4 Enter our contest!

Looking for something even snappier? We just so happen to be hosting a month-long contest in which you could turn a single social post into $500 in cold hard cash! Just follow Biz Kid$ on TikTok and choose one of four video clips to turn into a viral video. The entrant with the most likes by July 10 will win $500! Full details can be found here.