Tag Archives: business

Entrepreneurship Master Class

So this post should have been scheduled earlier today…but it wasn’t typed. I (Ms. ME) should have done far more marketing for the entrepreneurship master class I just held. To be honest, I kind of phoned it in, right down to the replay of one of my earlier classes from this year (see e2E launch below).

But enough of what I did wrong…here’s what I did right.

I didn’t press play and walk away. I actually put myself back through my own class. If you haven’t seen it, I won’t spoil anything here so you’ll be incentivized to sign up for the next free class happening on February 13th. What I will say is that it reminded me of the things that I need to be doing, even when I don’t feel like it to keep this and my other businesses going & growing. It reminded me why I took so many years to come back to this entrepreneur lifestyle and how rewarding and freeing it has already been this year.

Is that to say it hasn’t been nerve-racking at times? No, but it also depends on how I choose to look at it. The tedium of employment had driven me to a low point that I don’t want to revisit. So I have to accept the occasional thrill of “will she or won’t she” until my motivation returns to its past level when I juggled parenthood, college, and entrepreneurship. Or I can take my own advice from the master class…

Photo by Katerina Holmes on Pexels.com

At any rate here are a few tips on starting your own business (some are similar to my master class) that I’ll share from an ABC story back in 2011 that still has relevance:

  • Know why you want to start a business
  • Create a simple business plan
  • Nail your target customer
  • Go out and get customers

There are more tips in the article, seven to be exact. But as I and so many others are proof of, tips and knowledge are necessarily always enough without sufficient motivation or support. That’s part of the reason I created my course. So often while teaching teens and young adults how to start businesses, I’d hear from their adult guardians that they wish they not only had the knowledge but the support I provided my students.

So the key difference of this course in what I see as a series of at least three courses is the support group, for now located on Facebook, Entrepreneurs Creating Value. In my over a decade of working in education, I’ve truly come to appreciate that while the educator may direct the class, all of the instruction does not come from that educator. Goes back to that concept of ‘each one, teach one’ that I first heard in one of my college classes.

Of course at the end of the day everyone who enrolls in an online course is looking for the instructor’s feedback, which I provide on the schedule we’ve agreed upon based on our consultation prior to enrollment. However when it comes to tips 3 and 4 from above, I find the more people you have available to pick their brains the quicker you travel the path to identifying and reaching your target customer for your new business. Instead of bugging family and friends who may not fit that profile or worse yet may not want to support you in your escape for the employee lifestyle that they are too afraid to leave behind, crowd-sourcing the information you need in addition to individual research is a better path.

But what do you think? If you’re thinking about starting a business do you prefer one-on-one, having a group to bounce ideas off of, or both? Share below.

5 Things to Consider when Starting Your Own Business

Does anything sound better than being your own boss?

Well, maybe a brand new sports car or free ice cream for life. But even a state-of-the-art fully-decked-out sports car will eventually need routine maintenance, and the taste of mint chocolate chip can get old after a while.

The same kinds of things can happen when you start your own business. There are many details to consider and seemingly endless tasks to keep organized after the initial excitement of being your own boss and keeping your own hours has faded. Circumstances are bound to arise that no one ever prepared you for!

checklist

Although this list is not exhaustive, here are 5 things to get you started when creating a business of your own:

1. Startup cost

The startup cost of your business depends heavily on the type of business you want to have. To estimate the startup cost, make a list of anything and everything you’ll need to finance in the first 6 months. Then take each expense and ask:

  • Is this cost fixed or variable?
  • Essential or optional?
  • One-time or recurring?

Once you’ve determined the frequency and necessity of each cost for the first 6 months, add it all together. Then you’ll have a ballpark idea of what your startup costs might be.

(Hint: Don’t forget to add a line item for those unplanned, miscellaneous expenses!)

2. Competitors

“Find a need, and fill it” is general advice for starting a successful business. But if the need is apparent, how many other businesses will be going after the same space to fill? And how do you create a business that can compete? After all, keeping your doors open and your business frequented is priority #1.

The simplest and most effective solution? Be great at what you do. Take the time to learn your business and the need you’re trying to fill – inside and out. Take a step back and think like a customer. Try to imagine how your competitors are failing at meeting customers’ needs. What can you do to solve those issues? Overcoming these hurdles can’t guarantee that your doors will stay open, but your knowledge, talent, and work ethic can set you apart from competitors from the start. This is what builds life-long relationships with customers – the kind of customers that will follow you wherever your business goes.

(Hint: The cost of your product or service should not be the main differentiator from your competition.)

photo of person handing card
Photo by energepic.com on Pexels.com

3. Customer acquisition

The key to acquiring customers goes back to the need you’re trying to fill by running your business. If the demand for your product is high, customer acquisition may be easier. And there are always methods to bring in more. First and foremost, be aware of your brand and what your business offers. This will make identifying your target audience more accurate. Then market to them with a varied strategy on multiple fronts: content, email, and social media; search engine optimization; effective copywriting; and the use of analytics.

(Hint: The amount of money you spend on marketing – e.g., Google & Facebook ads – is not as important as who you are targeting.)

4. Building product inventory

This step points directly back to your startup cost. At the beginning, do as much research as you can, then stock your literal (or virtual) shelves with a bit of everything feasible you think your target audience may want or need. Track which products (or services) customers are gravitating towards – what items in your inventory disappear the most quickly? What services in your repertoire are the most requested? After a few weeks or months you’ll have real data to analyse. Then always keep the bestsellers on hand, followed closely by seasonal offerings. And don’t forget to consider making a couple of out-of-the-ordinary offerings available, just in case. Don’t underestimate the power of trying new things from time to time; you never know what could turn into a success!

(Hint: Try to let go of what your favorite items or services might be, if customers are not biting.)

5. Compliance with legal standards

Depending on what type of business you’re in, there may be standards and regulations that you must adhere to. For example, hiring employees falls under the jurisdiction of the Department of Labor and Federal Employment Laws. There are also State Labor Laws to consider.

(Hint: Be absolutely sure to do your research on the legal matters that can arise when beginning your own business. Not many judges are very accepting of “But, Your Honor, I didn’t know that was illegal!”)

Starting your own business is not an impossible task, especially when you’re prepared.

One other vital thing that makes starting your business easier is having a plan and a mentor. Register for our FREE master class happening Wednesday, August 12th at 9 PM EST to get access to both!

Start that side hustle like a pro!

If you’ve visited this blog before, you’ve heard us talk about your “hustle” or “side gig.”

There even was a series of posts about transitioning your side-gig into your main gig. It’s in style; and it makes sense—and cents? Gigs are now just a click or tap away on most of our devices, and a little extra money never hurts!

But what we haven’t done is given you specific tips on successfully starting that side-gig. We’ve talked about what you could do, but not so much about how to do whatever you decide to do. Here are a few things to consider when starting up a side hustle.

Checklist Free Stock Photo - Public Domain Pictures

What are your side hustle goals? We typically think of a side hustle as being an easy way to score a little extra cash. But they can sometimes be gateways into bigger things. Do you have skills that you’d like to develop into a full time career? A passion that you can turn into a business? Or do you just need some serious additional income to pay down debt? These considerations can help you determine how much time and money you invest into your gig and what gigs to pursue.

What are your marketable skills? Some gigs don’t require many skills beyond a serviceable car and a driver’s license. But others can be great outlets for your hobbies and skills. Love writing? Start freelancing on your weekends. Got massive gains from hours at the gym and love the outdoors? Start doing moving jobs in your spare time. You might be surprised by the demand for your passions!

Keep it reasonable Burnout is no joke. Some people thrive on 80 hour work weeks between jobs and side hustles, but don’t feel pressured to bite off more than you can chew. Consider how much you’re willing to commit to your gigs and don’t exceed that limit.

One great thing about side hustles is their flexibility. You choose your level of commitment, you find the work, and your success can depend on how much you put in. Consider your goals and inventory your skills to get there—and start hustling!

“I Want to Start My Own Business” Day

Today is “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day. If you’ve followed this blog, you’re familiar with our Divorce Your Job & Keep the House series. If not, don’t worry because we’ll be reposting them starting next week Friday. But to intro the reboot we want to recognize this special day and share this wonderful article written by Ben Guinter on figuring out what business to start.

While we recommend starting your own financial services business due to the incredible opportunity that exists because of the unique set of circumstances that exist, we know that
isn’t everyone’s dream. So see the full article below for tips on how to find your idea and move forward.

Watch the video to find out 7 things that make a financial services business a great idea.

Source: Chapter 12: The 7 Elements of an Ideal Wealth Building Opportunity — Wealth Wave


September 11th is “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day

– See more at: http://benguinter.com/iwanttostartmyownbusinessday.html#sthash.b0Et8kJ9.dpuf
If you’re looking for something to do today then stop procrastinating because it’s “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day! If you’ve ever said that statement before, today is the day to take your first step toward that goal! Let’s get right into celebrating “I Want to Start My Own Business” Day!

WHY IS THIS A HOLIDAY?

Well, think about how many times you’ve heard people say that phrase before… there’s a reason why it’s in quotation marks. 😉 People say it all the time and never act upon it, whether or not they have a strong desire to own a business or not. They mention it and forget about it before taking a step toward that goal. So sure, we could just spend today pointing our fingers at procrastinators or we could make it a day of action where you finally put into play a plan on how you’re going to reach your goal of running your own business. It can be a struggle to get started but if you don’t have a plan to achieve your goal then it’s just a passing dream. And if it’s really something that you want, you’ll just end up beating yourself up over not taking any action. But if you were to at least look into what it would take to get started, write out your definite goal and start mapping out your steps toward it then you’ll have a new purpose in life.

You won’t be a procrastinator, you’ll be doing what you want and before you know it you’ll have as much freedom as you desire. Can you imagine what it would be like to be your own boss? You set your hours, you decide what work you want to do and give the rest to your employees. Image what it will feel like to reach your goals! Just don’t abuse your power. 😉

HOW TO CELEBRATE

So, how can you celebrate today? Well, if you are one of those people who really do want to start their own business then your first step is to write down your goal. What is it you want to do with your business? What product or service are you going to offer? How are you going to make it unique? When you get it on paper you can start to mold it into exactly what you want your future business to become and it will be a constant reminder every time you see that paper. The next step would be to write out a plan of action. How are you going to reach that end goal? What are the steps you need to take to ensure your business succeeds? What kind of resources are you going to need and who can help you along the way? You can break these steps down to the simplest of tasks and put them in order so you know what you need to do from start to finish. And by the time you’re done you’ll know exactly what lies ahead of you. Can you guess what the next step is? DO IT! You have your goal mapped out, you know how you’re going to get there and now all you have to do is actually start doing what you planned to do. If you broke the steps down into individual tasks then just start trying to tackle a task a day or each week. Stick to it even when you are a little discouraged and you’ll have your business up and running before you know it! Have a great day and I can’t wait to see the grand opening of your business!

– See more at: http://benguinter.com/iwanttostartmyownbusinessday.html#sthash.1z1FR93G.dpuf