It’s the time honoured question… how is it that some business owners launch company after company and have repeated success, whilst others struggle to get their first idea off the ground and end up in embarrassing amounts of debt and shuffling back to their old jobs…
I’d consider myself a six time champ on this front. I’ve still a long way to go. I want 7 successful profitable businesses before the years out for one, but every time I jump a hurdle, I set the bar even higher… always putting ‘perfect’ just out of my own reach. Yeah, I know, I’m nuts.
I am human though. I failed once. My first business actually failed when I was just 19. I didn’t have the tools and the knowledge I have now; the same tricks I apply time and time again to keep launching successful and PROFITABLE enterprises.
So what do I know that others don’t?
The first thing is supply and demand. Are you offering something people need? Chances are you are, BUT you’re not packaging it or presenting it in a way that makes them UNDERSTAND the VALUE of what you’re offering. You don’t always have to come with something completely new, quite often the most successful entrepreneurs succeed just because they do something better or in a different way to their competitors.
Secondly, startups forget to do their market research, and in their passion and frenzy for what they are doing, they forget to check out what OTHER people are doing. Never forget competition exists. Research research research, and figure out what you’re doing differently/better.
Thirdly… find your niche. Pretty much what I said in the last paragraph. Once you’ve done your research, you’ll have a much better idea of how you sit in the market and what your unique selling point is (USP).
Which brings me onto number four… your brand. Your brand essentially starts with you and what you believe in. These days people buy people, they don’t necessarily buy products. Branding has changed dramatically… does yours stand out from the crowd?
Five: how’s your marketing? Chucking a load of money at the ‘boost post’ button on Facebook is a sure fire way to fall into the ‘95% of startups that failed’ category. You need strategy, knowledge, smarts, dedication, and a penchant for data analysis. Yeah OK it’s not the most fun in the world studying stats, but I tell you what is super fun… when the pennies, turn into pounds, which turn into hundreds of thousands of those little beauties smiling at you from your balance screen.
Six: Systems. Do you have strategies? Have you planned for success? How easy is it for your customers to find you / buy from you / communicate with you? These things require systems. Clever use of technology, software, people, planning, even to do lists… do you know how many entrepreneurs forget to send basic welcome emails? Let me give you a clue: No relationship, no sale. Systemise that shit!
Seven: If you’re lucky enough to get off the ground, do you have a growth strategy in place? Or was it just beginners luck and you’re headed for the 95% pile again? Growth requires list building, clever partnerships, delegation, a team (even if it’s a team of robots), product development, service development, expansion into other niches and markets, rebranding, refocusing, and an understanding of your customer LIFETIME value.
Eight: The right mindset. This really ought to be number one because if your heads not in the right place, your finances, your product, and your business certainly WON’T be. Are you a positive thinker? Or a frustrated, stressed out, nail biting bean? Do you command attention when you walk into a room or do you imagine the worst and end up a nervous wreck? Do you visualise? What do you visualise? Do you worry about the rent thats due next month or do you worry how on earth you’re going to choose between one of those three million pound houses you’ll have to bring your children up in? See the difference?
The 5% who win this game all have one MAJOR thing in common: They know, understand, and abide by, the UNIVERSAL LAWS OF BUSINESS.
Will I share them with you?
Maybe one day
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