I remember working at my desk and being obsessed with the date of my pre-planned resignation. I was never unrealistic about the amount of work that it would take for me to build my own sustainable business… but I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t looking forward to owning my own time and doing life on my own terms.
As a business owner (especially when you’re a new entrepreneur) you have to be okay with the idea of ‘no days off’. Unlike at a job, where there are shared responsibilities, the ability to delegate, and the fate of the business lies with some distant CEO that no-one has ever met – when you’re the boss, you are the CEO. And even in those moments that you just want to get away, you still won’t quite be able to completely check out.
Your business is like your baby. You’ll need to feed it, care for it, and nurture it into a strong, profitable enterprise. Don’t worry, just like having a newborn, even with all the chaos your business may bring it will still be one of the most rewarding things you’ve ever done.
Of course, there really are endless perks. From unscheduled meal times (think lunch date with friends) to no longer having to submit your vacation days for approval and the immense sense of accomplishment you’ll feel as your business starts to experience success – being your own boss may be challenging but it’s also worth it!.
Despite my love for entrepreneurship, there are a few practical tips that I have that I believe are fundamental to success in business. I like to call them the 3 P’s of success: Presentation, People, and Patience.
3 P’s of success
How you present your business to the world through your online presence is essential to your success. It’s how potential customers will determine if they like you and what you have to offer. Before I go to a new restaurant… the first thing that I do is check out their website. Pictures, reviews, and being able to see their menu online is a sure way to get me in the door. A janky website and lackluster photos is an instant turn off.
The same goes for your business.
Your prospects make assumptions about everything they see and hear about your brand. It’s not just about looking good, it’s also about the story that you are telling about who you are and what you do.
Be intentional with your efforts. Make sure that your brand aesthetic is cohesive and appealing. You want potential customers to find you with ease, to understand your brand message, and to want to purchase from you. The way you present your business to the world both online and in-person holds the key to your success.It's not just about looking good, it's also about the story that you are telling about who you are and what you do. Click To Tweet
Tip: If you offer a product based business and you want to be found online do these things now: Make sure that you have a strong social media presence (free customer engagement and increase visibility). Your website should be easy to navigate and should be search engine optimized. I won’t write a book on this right now, but if you want others to find you organically, you’re going to have to have an SEO strategy. If you have a WordPress website, check out free plugins for the best WordPress search engine optimization.
If there is one thing that I would emphasize more than anything else when you’re first getting started is KNOW YOUR TRIBE. The worst feeling in the world is to launch a new product, service, or blog to crickets. The little-known fact though is that you really only need to get the attention of a very niche group of people to achieve tremendous success.
So before you embark on the impossible journey of appealing to everyone, think about who your target market is. Who are the people that would be interested in what you offer or what you have to say? Who would find value in your offering and have a need that you can fill? … that’s your tribe.Don't try to be everything for everyone. Be confident in what you bring to the table and be completely okay with what you don't. Click To Tweet
Don’t try to be everything for everyone. Be confident in what you bring to the table and be completely okay with what you don’t. In business, it’s important to accept that not everyone will want what you have. It’s your job to get in front of those who do.
3 questions to identifying your target audience:
1. When you first got started who did you envision would benefit from your offering?
2. Who has a genuine need or desire for your point of view, products, posts, or service(s)?
3. What type of person would benefit the most from your business?
The best thing that you can do is take the time to discover the characteristics of your target market. You don’t want to run FB ads to single women when your YouTube channel is about your adventures as a new mom. Or, you don’t want to pay to vend at an event for career professionals, if your online courses are for new entrepreneurs. By taking the time to learn your target market, you position yourself for success, right from the start.
Tip: This tip doesn’t just apply to your target audience. It also applies to building a solid team with the right employees. As your business grows it’s important to have the right people in your corner. Even if it’s an unpaid intern, you want the work relationship to be a mutually beneficial one. Remember, you’re the boss – productivity and effectiveness are what you need most.
I’m a fast-paced by nature. I thrive in high-pressure environments. As an entrepreneur, my energy has to always be focused on bringing in new business. If I’m not securing new customers consistently… my business is in a state of stagnation. I’ve had to develop a strong level of patience on this journey.
When your livelihood is on the line, you want everything to happen fast. You want to find your way to profitability as quickly as possible. But you also have to understand that sustainable success doesn’t happen overnight.
Most first-time entrepreneurs get easily frustrated and overwhelmed with the process of actually building the business. It’s understandable given the financial burden they may have undertaken. And the truth is the last thing you want to do is play games with your money – your investment. But the only way to try to success is to keep going. Exercise patience and you’ll be just fine. One transaction a day will soon become 100 and you’ll be well on your way to the success you’ve worked for.