When starting your own venture it can be easy to make mistakes that derail your progress and discourage you. Below are common pitfalls to avoid to ensure you are always cruising on the highway to success.
Not Validating Your Business
Proof of concept is documented evidence that a potential product or service can be successful.
The best thing to do is prove your concept while you are still in your current job.This allows you to still have income coming in to support you and your business. Once you feel your business can support itself you can start to transition into working on it full time. In the end you must be able to answer the question “Do people need/want this?” with a definitive yes.
Spending Too Much Money
It is smart to keep costs as low as possible when initially building your business. Being frugal from the start helps you distinguish what expenses are priority and what can wait. I am guilty of this. When I started my website my initial gut reaction was to find a designer to create a site a professional looking site. After I took a step back I realized there are so many websites to help you do it yourself. Research all your options before spending. Figure out what you can do first, and what exactly you need help with and then continue looking for free help options in those areas. After you’ve exhausted all of your resources (including your tech savvy friends) look into paid help.
Marketing Is Key
This is critical, you may have a great idea but hate self promotion so you put off marketing your services or product. Marketing can make or break almost any business. Social media allows for so many free marketing tools that you should not feel like you need to go out and pay someone to do your marketing right away. It is never too early to start marketing. Your product may not be perfect initially but early feedback can be essential in helping refine your process and the end result.
Keep An Open Mind
Your business may evolve in ways you never imagined. If you do not allow for change then may miss out on huge opportunities. When starting my online vintage store I had not considered the idea of doing wholesale orders until I received an unexpected email from a boutique vintage store in Brooklyn. They wanted to know if I could supply small batch orders. This was not a service I offered, but I knew wholesale could bring large profits quickly. I pushed myself to figure out how I could fulfill their orders and now wholesale has become a vital part of my business. Be open to abstract thought and new ideas in the beginning and also as you progress to avoid becoming stagnant.
Featured Photo: Instagram @Yanafisti