Starting your own company is hard. Growing it into an actual business is even harder.
By Keri Barnett
“Can I really do this?”
It’s one of the many thoughts we have when starting a business. Your thoughts go from “I’ve got my business idea. I’m so excited!” to “Oh my goodness, what do I do now? How can I convince people that I can really deliver what I’m claiming?”
If you are having these thoughts, know that you are certainly not alone.
Being an entrepreneur requires courage, creativity, organization, tenacity and a crazy amount of resilience.
One minute you are on top of your game, and the next you are nervous about your next move. Here are a few power moves that will increase your productivity and move you forward.
1. Network, even when you don’t feel like it.scared
Let’s be real. Does anyone really feel like networking? Of course not. But it is an essential part of establishing relationships and getting the word out for your business. So even when you feel like you’re in a lull, speak positively to yourself and get out there. There are two ways to network:
• In-person: Find upcoming networking events in your area. Dress in your favorite outfit, and engage in some quick yet meaningful conversation. Hearing yourself state what your strengths over and over will reassure you of your calling.
• Online: Social media is an excellent place to network. At the touch of your fingertips you can find other groups such as Online Business BFFs on Facebook where you can encourage each other and find opportunities that would be difficult to find otherwise.
2. Research your existing followers or customers
To increase business, you need to have a clear understanding of what customers need. At the point where you start doubting yourself, your natural response is going to be, “How can I sell?” Don’t focus on that. Take a step back and remember why you got into this business in the first place. Remember that your business exists to solve a problem. So start researching. Web developers— look at some of your followers’ websites (if they have one) and see if there are missing elements. Virtual assistants— skim follower posts to see of any mention of being overwhelmed. Mommy bloggers— see if there are questions about certain products or address a recent recall. The important thing is to stay on top of your game so that your content is always relevant.
3. Interact on Social Media, even if you don’t receive many responses right away.
Maintaining a successful business now requires a strong social media presence. Social media marketing is measured by reach, engagement, impression. So now that you have done the research on your followers, act now. Reach by posting an ad with tips based on your findings, showing that you understand the problem. Then make an impression by showing compassion and offering a solution that is reasonable to the customer. Viewers will appreciate it, and it will open opportunities for conversation (engagement). Continue to build relationships with those who view your posts as it will ultimately lead to conversions.
The Wrap Up…
Running a business is scary, but it doesn’t have to bring you down.
The way to conquer your fears is to take action, find new and exciting ways to market yourself, and establish healthy and helpful relationships.
And during the process, be kind to yourself and be positive!
So what do you all think? What scares you about running a business? What inspirational tidbits did you find here? Please let us know in the comments below.
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About the author:
Keri Barnett is the founder of Barnett Marketing Solutions, a company that offers website creation, consultation, marketing plans, and online marketing management. She has over 10 years of professional experience, 5 of it in marketing. She resides in New Jersey with her husband and 1-year-old son.