Written by Victor Sacks, VS Associates Ltd
Rocket boost your business! Right from the off…
So, you’ve decided to start your own business? How awesome is that?!
As I’m part of this fabulous group of collaborators known as Shifties, who has a logo that is a Rocket, let’s use a Rocket Launch as an analogy for how you might go about it…
Well, there’s a start – how can you train for something when you don’t know what is required?! The training I refer to is your determination and mindset. Just as gravity will do everything it can to stop that rocket getting out of its clutches, the journey to self-employment is not for everyone. I’m sure you’ve heard the voices of the naysaying friends louder than those who are right behind you – though in reality they’re perhaps evenly split.
Maybe you’ve even had nagging doubts yourself – this, dear reader, is the starting point for us all – so embrace it, it will be with you for a while and will stand you in good stead. The more you overcome your doubts, the more resilient you’ll become.
Part of the training will be around finances. But I’ll assume at this point you are aware of what will be required, and recommend you focus on determination and mindset.
We now need to gear up and start telling the world about what we’re doing – but all we have is our time – we have no money at all… no problem!
We need to get a safe landing set up so that people can find us and more importantly come to see us – a website is perfect. There are plenty of free sites available, and it doesn’t have to be anything fancy at this stage. Maybe three or four pages showcasing you, your backstory (assume everyone is nosey and wants to know who ‘you’ are) what you do and how you do it, and a prominent ‘call to action’ on every page (telephone number, email etc).
Fuel lines open. Engines heating.
At the same time, we need social media accounts, and these are all free as well! So LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram can all be set up. You can even create separate business and personal profiles. All social profiles should be set up to display your website link, and your website should be showing your social media links – harmony!
It’s time to bring in content and engage online – What do you do? Who are you? What can you do for people? Do they need to engage with you?
Okay, so this next bit may sound obvious. Still, so many that set up their own businesses go straight to ‘sell, sell, sell’ mode, where ‘show, show, show’ can be so much more powerful. Demonstrate your prowess, give away ideas, hints and tips, use your mobile for videos, join LinkedIn and Facebook groups, but sit back and observe before diving in. There may be others in the group who do what you do or people you admire and aspire to – so watch and learn.
When you’re ready, ‘like’ a comment… post your own comment (that you are 100% certain is on point) then… post more often to the group and build from there.
Engines are firing!
As this content hits cyberspace there will be interest and intrigue, and requests to connect. Take it all as ‘virtual handshake offering’ – accept graciously; respond with a ‘Hi – my profile is pretty much self-explanatory, but if there is anything I can help you with then please get in touch’ rather than straight to a full-blown sales pitch. They’re connections for now (you may want to disengage at a later stage – but that’s a whole other blog) and you can always reach out to them when your skills have been honed.
5… 4… 3… 2…
Now everything is cooking we need boots on the ground. We need physical collaborators to help build and grow. When determination and mindset get side-swiped (and they will), you need someone other than family to check in with.
So here’s where Shifties comes in – a group of fantastically wonderful business owners, all growing their businesses, all with hopes and dreams just like you have hopes and dreams, and yes, every so often, when you have a wobble and pick up the phone to each other, who will help you reset your mind and crack on.
We also need our collaborators. When a social media group asks for a referral for someone who does what you do, who better to respond than someone who knows you? Someone who isn’t a family member or close friend, but someone who knows you as a business owner?
You are up and running! It has cost you time and effort, it has tested every fibre of your being but don’t for one minute think it won’t stop testing you. Gravity is pushing you down and those engines better stay on full throttle to push you through it. You can’t level off, because the nose is the heaviest part. Level off and you’ll fall back down.
So you have to keep on pushing, posting, reaching out, collaborating, helping others by directing traffic their way as they direct traffic to you, watching your social media and website engagement, reading books to help you develop yourself as well as your business – and do the work too. You’ve got to be the best you, you can be.
Most importantly: don’t forget to look out of the window from time to time, see how far you’ve come and enjoy the view… but not for too long – got to keep pushing!
If you would like to talk to me more about my experience starting my own business up, please contact me any time – you can find me in Shifties or by reaching me via my Shifties Contributor profile: https://shifties.co.uk/directory/victor-sacks.