There are certain characteristics most entrepreneurs tend to have that separate them from the general public. The way they act and carry themselves tend to attract the attention of an entire room. As a slightly more introverted myself, the thought of putting myself out there to increase my network is overwhelming. A few of you reading this may be the same but to jump-start your entrepreneurial dreams you have to get a little uncomfortable. To all my aspiring entrepreneurs or if you’re a little stagnant, we have four tips that may help you rise in the ranks of leaders.
1. Build Your Personal Brand
Establishing your own personal brand should be done as soon as you can. This is for a few reasons. First, it takes time to really build a genuine following and secondly, it makes you a credible go to source in your niche market.
Now it’s time to think about how you build your personal brand. It is a little difficult to convey your personality and sprouting charisma through screens but it can be done! Assess the options of mediums you can use to express yourself. For many today it’s videos, podcasts, blogs, and social media. All are potential ways to showcase your expertise and teach your viewers/readers/listeners a thing or two. Don’t be afraid to be yourself, being disingenuous is obvious a mile away.
Building your brand should be a fun part of your journey while you make connections and build relationships with potential clients!
As you may have heard, “your network is your net-worth”. This rings true for any field you attempt to enter. Expanding your network gets your name to corners of markets you may have not even heard of but don’t be discouraged if you haven’t gotten to that point yet. You don’t have to stress yourself out filling your calendar with an endless stream of networking events. Sometimes it’s best to start with the people you surround yourself with already.
Friends and family are going, to be honest when you bring your ideas up and unconditionally supportive. If you’ve got a product or service, test it out with them and get feedback. These people around you are more willing to be advocates of your marketplace and spread the word to an extended circle of their friends and family. Starting here will build a more loyal base and may give you the confidence to share your marketplace the next time those networking events roll around.
3. Stay Learning
The downfall of many companies are that they become comfortable and stagnant at the top while hungrier, younger company usurps them. No throne can’t be overtaken so it’s crucial to stay informed and up to date. The latest technology even in an unrelated field may be utilized in your business model if you’re creative enough. Trends in the fashion world can affect the production or labeling of your product. Think of colors, fonts, and influencers. Global news can also have a great effect on your business. A successful business can always afford to aid the people affected by natural disasters as giving back is just as important as bringing in.
Of course keeping up with emerging competitors is always necessary. Learn strengths and weaknesses and how you can make sure you stay ahead. There’s also something you can learn from businesses that have died out. What did they do wrong? What did they do right? Figuring out what they did wrong can offer new perspectives. All in all, learn any way you can. It doesn’t even have to be about your business. You can even learn something from a toddler!
4. Don’t Fear Rejection
Being afraid of something prevents you from confronting it a lot of the times. In the cutthroat world of marketplaces and e-commerce, you’ll run into obstacles that think your idea is crap or that you don’t have what it takes. Take these comments with a grain of salt because if you really put your all into something, failure is impossible.
The best thing to do is embrace rejection and see it coming. There’s something to learn from every rejection (ie. our last point) so take each encounter with investors or would-be-clients as an opportunity to gain or improve on. Don’t linger on the idea of a successful marketplace, make it a reality.
*Insert some cliche 80’s movie ending where the geeky nerd takes the leap and asks the head cheerleader to prom. Be the geek and get your date!
To wrap this up don’t forget to be genuine and put yourself out there. Rejection is a part of the process so embrace it. If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, I wish you the best of luck!