How to Stop Procrastinating and Get Your Business Off the Ground
Do you know how many years it took me to overcome my fears and insecurities and start TimeJump Media? A LOT. It's something that's been in the back of my mind for many years. Throughout that time, I've worked with clients large and small, and started a number of other companies but not this.
What was the problem?
This was more dear to my heart. I saw it as a potential gateway to the ability to do other things, greater things, things that could positively influence this world and the people who live here. But fear was holding me back. It took a person who is dear to my heart to finally give that push and encouragement I needed in order to take those first baby steps toward living my dream.
I've got Pinterest boards filled with inspirational messages. I actually try to live by those in a way that doesn't run into the danger zone of toxic positivity. I save them because they speak to my personal values, but at certain times, I fall short - even as I have enouraged others around me to fulfill their potential and follow their hearts. What is there to be afraid of, really? In the end, my fear is not having
Starting a business isn't difficult - conserve your energy for building your dreams
If you're considering starting your own business, my top advice would be to DO IT!
✅ Make a plan. ✅ Write down your idea. ✅ Have a conversation with a potential collaborator.
✅What else can you think of?
Make yourself accountable
It doesn't need to be anything large. My friend Jen over at DIY Glamour and I made a pact over sushi to do one thing each week - just one (more is always fine) - to help advance our goals, to keep each other honest, and check in with each other weekly.
A reporter recently reached out to me to ask what my top five tips would be to get a business off the ground quickly. Outlined below is my my 5-day plan to help you get your new business up and running quickly, so you can focus on doing what you do best! The point of this is not to over-simplify the process of opening and running a company, but to break things down into smaller steps that won't take you months or even weeks. You've got this.
Who is your customer? What is their need? (This is different from what is your product). If you are starting with an idea for a product or service, spend some time brainstorming all the different ways that your product can help people, fill a gap in the market, or be used in unexpected ways.
This will help build empathy and understanding of your core customer base, give you ideas about how to branch out beyond them, and also give you a foundation from which to build your marketing and publicity campaigns, your website, and your social media platforms. Know your market and your customer. Contact your local Chamber of Commerce for details about your local marketscape and general information about the local residents and tourists who may become your customers .
Take the time to analyze your start-up expenses, inventory and expected recurring overhead expenses, customer care expenditures and marketing. Don’t let it scare you, but you need to have a plan about where you’re starting and where you’d like to go. Write a 1-page business plan to solidify your ideas and identify and gaps.
Decide on a name. Check with your state business name office, check social media accounts, check available domain names. Ideally, your name will be unified across all three for marketing, search visibility and brand recognition. Register your domain . Research your competition and companies doing similar things. Begin to consider your marketing approach.
If incorporating, research the best state to incorporate in that makes sense for your business type and tax needs. This may vary depending on whether you are online, a physical location, or selling on line and in person. Take the time to familiarize yourself with the different corporation types and which is the best fit for your business structure.
Day 5 and beyond
JUST! DO! IT! If you have a great idea and the passion to see it come to life, don’t give up and don’t be afraid to pursue your dream. Never stop learning, never stop working, dedicate time to build your business every day and dedicate time to educate yourself about the various aspects of it. To some extent, running a successful business can be trial and error. If selling products online, experiment by selling on eBay, Etsy or Postmark before committing to opening your own online store.
If you are new to running your own business and have limited capital, make the most of your efforts by establishing yourself as a social-media driven brand, get those sales, and positive reviews to turn followers into customers. And hey - drop me a link and link to your site! I'd love to check it out.