While expanding my business into different streams of income other than physical products, I’ve reflected on the biggest business myths I’ve encountered during my three years as an entrepreneur.
MYTH 1 – A business will keep me chained to a desk.
In the early stages, “hustle” is definitely mandatory. But I’ve learned that all the big players eventually invest in automation and outsourcing. While it isn’t necessary to copy influencers exactly, it is important to learn the foundations so that you can mold them to your business down the line. Whether that’s using the same email responder or hiring a virtual assistant, as your business gets busy, it’s important that you remain working ON the business instead of IN it. Nothing’s worse than resentment.
Kimra Luna, a brand and marketing strategist hired a nanny and a chef when she grew her business to over a million dollars in the first 18 months. And if you’re a mom, it makes complete sense. Nothing is more stressful than trying to host a webinar with toddler crying for a meal.
So take hope in knowing that as your business flourishes, you won’t need to do more work…employees can. If you’re still questioning whether you can afford to outsource, think of it this way. How much is your expertise worth? Let’s say $300/hour. Now figure the average social media manager pay rate is $20/hour. By staying “chained” to your desk and managing social media accounts yourself, you’re actually LOSING $280 an hour – OUCH. Focus your time on revenue-generating activities and leave all that “busy work” to others.
MYTH 2 – You can do this business thing on your own.
As a full-on introvert, this was the biggest slap in the face. It doesn’t matter if you’re resourceful and determined, you can’t achieve ultimate business success on your own. Branch out and make connections. And I mean “real” connections where you’re both cheering each other on – don’t be a leech.
James Wedmore made a powerful connection and friendship with Lewis Howes during a mastermind meet-up. As Lewis Howes’ business blew up, so did Wedmore’s since Lewis had no problem telling his audience that Wedmore was the “best of the best” when it came to video marketing.
Network = Net Worth.
In fact, take a moment to follow some key influencers in your niche, you’ll come to notice that they all have a connection to each other. It’s not a coincidence – a rising tide lifts all boats. The biggest point I’d like to make here is to create relationships with people BEFORE you ever think you’ll “need” them. Offer help, be valuable with no expectations. Nothing sucks more than a leech.
MYTH 3 – I can build a business doing what everyone else does.
…it might take a while to see any traction though. You could do even better if you separated yourself from the competing pack and establish authority in a laser-focused niche. Offer something that no one else does. There are tons of dinner plate brands, but Corelle Dinnerware stands out. They have a lightweight plate that is virtually unbreakable when dropped. And because they are unlike all the other plates I see in the store, it’s the only brand name I remember.
Niche = Riche
I applied this concept in my own product business, Diaper Dawgs. My main product is a patent-pending sprayer shield that contains dirty particulate water that is created when rinsing off a cloth diaper with a handheld bidet sprayer (aka shit shield). All of my other competitors built a shield concept that enveloped the diaper. I went out of the box to build a shield that enveloped the actual sprayer. Because of this, my brand isn’t among the other three brands lost in the “noise.”
This is the age of specialization. Whittle down to a niche within a profitable industry and rock the hell out of it.
Nobody cares about how my website looks.
Ha, keep telling yourself that. Sex sells. This isn’t 1999’s anymore when Al Gore created the internets. Your website and visual branding has to look legit. A brand forms the emotions people feel about your company, one of those being trust. If your website colors, fonts, and messaging is changing frequently or overall looks janky, people will assume you’re a flight risk and won’t buy your product or service.
There was a website study mentioned by Derek Halpern of Social Triggers, that proving that “Design is King” not content. This study showed that the design of a website can affect the trust and credibility of a single organization. The good news for you is that the current design trend is a minimal, flat user interface. So you don’t need much design skill to make it work nowadays. Website builders like WordPress or Squarespace make building website fast and beautiful.
You can read Derek’s blog post HERE.
MYTH 5 – Everything has to be perfect before I launch.
Jadah Sellner is the co-founder of Simple Green Smoothies, a multimillion dollar business that has changed the lives of over one million people. Her mantra is to take “imperfect action.” Nothing is more crippling than not taking action because you’re ready for everything to be just right. Perfection will never happen. My very own profession as graphic designer has held me back because I thought there was absolutely no excuse that my website should look like a hot mess…well I still do, but that doesn’t matter. The point is to just do it – just launch.
“Comparison is the thief of joy.”
You can watch Jadah’s take on “imperfect action” at WDS 2014 HERE – it’s a really great video that will spur some action in you. “Something” will always outperform “nothing,” so do something.
MYTH 6 – I can only make money doing one thing.
As much as Kim Kardashian is hated, she’s got hustle and is the queen of multiple income streams. From sponsored Instagram posts, to emojis, a clothing line, club appearances, a tv show, magazine ads…you name it. I thought when I started my product business that I’d be limited to selling physical products only, but I was so wrong. I came to this realization after taking the 1K1Day Academy from Nicole Walters. She teaches three streams of income to start earning more money and plug in the holes that were seeping out cash.
You don’t even need a business to benefit, but since I already had one, I was able to incorporate these three additional income streams into different areas. And guess what, top influencers use these very income streams as well. You can learn more about the 1K1Day Academy and my Briefcase Bonuses.
MYTH 7 – Starting a business costs too much money.
Maybe 20 years ago, pre-interwebs. Are you creative with words? Did you know you can start a t-shirt shop with ZERO startup costs? If you’re killer at sales, there are plenty of direct sale companies where you only need $100. The fact of the matter is, if you’re absolutely set on creating a business, lack of money is no longer an excuse…but you definitely need commitment and grit.
Even if you only have a physical prototype or even just a drawing, you can show the CONCEPT of your idea on places like Indiegogo or Kickstarter and get fully funded. Do you have a skill others don’t and have five bucks on you? Check out my $5 Start-Up Guide below where I show you how to launch your own information biz for, you guessed it, $5.