Silas and his wife Grace are the voices behind the wildly popular lifestyle, travel and personal finance blog, Chasing Foxes where they teach thousands of monthly readers how to live their best lives. Check out how they recently made over $3,000 in a month working from home. Here's the business advice Silas has to share with first-time entrepreneurs who want to start a business of their own:

"Pretty much anything you are going to go through, someone else has already gone through. Pretty much any feeling you are going to have, someone else has already had. Any obstacle, any roadblock, ANYTHING! Someone has come up against them and figured out a way to get around them. Tap into that. Whether it's reading a book, reaching out or shadowing someone, get help and then do it better."
The rise of the chatbot has been extraordinary to witness. Thanks to the ubiquity afforded to us by chat on platforms like Facebook, we've grown quite used to chatting with friends and family across all our social media networks. That's why AI-powered chatbots present a new digital frontier for businesses looking to automate and relinquish much of the man-power it takes to have a chat with its customers.

Larger companies can hire an agency or full-time staff member to run their Facebook and Twitter accounts, but small businesses often have to handle their own social media marketing. With so many responsibilities, business owners are often too busy, overwhelmed or undereducated about the importance of social media to spend time developing and implementing a great social media strategy. As a consultant, you can help them determine the best tactics, posting schedules and content for their target audience. As their follower count grows, so will your business.

The Entrepreneur Insiders network is an online community where the most thoughtful and influential people in America’s startup scene contribute answers to timely questions about entrepreneurship and careers. Today’s answer to the question, “What should budding entrepreneurs know about building a business?” is written by Michael Cole, co-founder and CEO of Picniic.


Social Media Examiner: Social Media – Listed 10 out of 20 times, offers everything needed for social media strategy. Readers can find advice on social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+, Snapchat, and more. Browsing and following this digital marketing blog helps formulate an effective social media strategy for different channels. The articles and posts include case studies, podcasts, review of the latest industry research, and expert interviews along with latest social media updates & news.  This is a blog to bookmark for anyone implementing social media marketing.


When it comes to digital marketing, there’s always more to learn. New technology and changing trends mean that if you don’t make an effort to regularly do research, you’ll be at constant risk of falling behind. Luckily, a number of great digital marketing blogs stay on top of the most important digital marketing news and trends you should be aware of. Add these to your list of subscriptions to stay in the know.
Do you have impeccable organizational skills? What about cleaning skills? Can you quickly and efficiently carry out these tasks? Maybe it's time to put those skills to good use by becoming an online personal assistant or task manager. Companies like TaskRabbit or Zirtual allow you to sign up for tasks you want to complete — including data research, virtual assistant or running errands — and begin building clientele.
Tim Schmoyer posted his first YouTube video more than 10 years ago. Since then he’s created over 3,000 videos, amassed over 50 million views and became officially certified by YouTube in “Audience Growth.” In 2013, he started Video Creators to train other creators to master the YouTube platform and use it as a place to spread messages that change lives.
It's easy to get caught up in the day-to-day challenges of running a business, but you MUST carve out time at least once a week to take stock of what you're doing for the long-term health of your business. That includes marketing, training, employee development, community engagement and capital development. Sound investments today will pay dividends in the future. - Jim Judy, Try Franchising

As someone who's been immersed in a number of online industries for quite some time, I know a thing or two about what it takes to succeed in this arena. However, just like you, I started at ground zero with little knowledge, but a great deal of passion. What I learned along the way were some invaluable lessons from failure that hurt at the time, but helped immensely in the grand scheme of things.
If your customers are making it all the way to your check out page with items in their cart and not making a purchase, something is wrong and Google Analytics will let you know. There could be a number of reasons that people are abandoning their carts, but figuring it out on your own could cause even more problems. An online marketing expert will be able to help you solve this problem quickly and prevent it from happening again.
They’re curious: Entrepreneurs love finding out the answer to the question, ‘what will happen if…’ They’re experimental. Entrepreneurs love learning. They regularly read business books to advance their knowledge. So naturally, entrepreneurship appeals to them because doing allows them to learn the most in the shortest amount of time. Their curiosity allows their continued growth.
Converting files can be done manually or using file conversion software. Usually, you need to convert word, excel or powerpoint files to a PDF format. In the case of books, files are typically converted with a text editor program to an epub or kindle format – used for e-books. Some examples of file conversion software are NCH FIle Conversion Software and Zamzar.
As well as giving opinions it’s important to guide companies on how to collect them. Research designs are, therefore, a critical component of any research process. It includes the formulation of survey texts and questions (e.g., textual, multiple choice, drop-down, Likert scale, ranking, file/image, questions, etc.). The surveys sometimes also need to be integrated with a website, database or mail marketing service provider (e.g., Mail Chimp).
Likes, shares, and social media engagement have become ways for companies to expand into the online business world and gain followers who later on can be converted into customers. As a basic example, say you come across a post for a business in your local area. Initially, you might give it a like and then later remember, hey, I’ve been meaning to check this place out. Or maybe you give a company page a like and then later make a purchase from them.
Startup entrepreneur Keval Baxi of Codal Inc. shares “One piece of advice that I’d give to someone who wants to be an entrepreneur is to be reliable. If you say you’re going to do something, do it. Leaders and managers that don’t follow through fail to gain the respect of their team, and don’t encourage accountability. Make sure that your team knows that you’ll be there when you’re needed.”
Every day, there is a huge fluctuation in FX markets. If you have a combination of technical and fundamental analytical skills and some cash flow, you can become an online currency trader. Places like www.forexfactory.com are great for learning the basics. Remember, this is leveraged cash, so if you make the right decisions, you have a chance to profit big! At the same time, the risks can be high if you don’t have a money management strategy in place.
This is one of the best Internet marketing tips we've ever come across, and we will even tell you where we found it. It came from an eBook that we read by Brian Clark, CEO of Copyblogger.com. In this book, he reveals a detail about SEO that everyone in the Internet marketing arena should focus on - "What happens off the page is much more important to SEO than what happens on the page."
Webinars are quite possibly one of the most potent ways you can make an exorbitant amount of money online. You'll need an audience to train and you'll need to know what you're talking about. Of course, this usually requires having a website and some semblance of an online presence. However, people can still do webinars without all of that. For example, you might have a sizable social media following and you train them every week on something to do with social media. But you will need a product to embed and sell at some point. Don't worry about it in the beginning. In my experience, the best webinar platform out there is GoToWebinar. 
The sad truth is that for all the SEO consultants out there who know exactly what they're talking about, there are hundreds of others who are clueless, money-grabbing sharks. Their sole focus is on getting customers signed up to a 6-month retainer based on promised results. They then kick their heels for the first few months, pocketing cash for doing nothing.
If you can find and restore items like furniture and appliances, you can make a substantial amount of money. You can acquire the items on Craigslist, or even at garage sales or estate sales, restore them, and then list them for sale on the site. You may also be able to market certain items on eBay, particularly if they are small, unusual, but high in price.
Users are much more likely to “like” and share content that includes some imagery. Short text tweets should be transformed into eye-catching graphics with the same message. Writing a blog post with plenty of stats and facts? Consider turning it into an infographic, one of the most-shared forms of content. And just about any blog post will be more powerful with a short video.

Google is the key search engine. A digital marketer cannot ignore Google while planning a marketing strategy. While designing your website, it is important to understand Google and its unique requirements. For this, you can follow Think with Google. It discusses the best practices of digital marketing. It will offer you insight into different channels and will enable you to explore the latest trends. It brings the like-minded persons together to help the beginners to understand digital marketing and its trends.
The nature of this type of business makes it easier to work from home and for clients who are thousands of kilometers away from your country. If you are a good editor and you have eyes for details, then you should consider visiting freelancer.com, elance.com, oDesk.com et al to enroll and become a member. From such platforms, you can get enough editing and proof reading jobs that you can handle.

As someone who's been immersed in a number of online industries for quite some time, I know a thing or two about what it takes to succeed in this arena. However, just like you, I started at ground zero with little knowledge, but a great deal of passion. What I learned along the way were some invaluable lessons from failure that hurt at the time, but helped immensely in the grand scheme of things.
Entrepreneurship is a challenging but rewarding path to take and you have highlighted some great tips here. I agree with your point that to be a successful entrepreneur you need to work smarter, not harder. I believe that working smarter is all about hiring the right team and delegating responsibility. Think about it this way. Today’s entrepreneurs are working with the ‘Millennial’ generation, those born after 1980 and before 2000. These people are digital natives who have very different ideas around what they look for in their leaders, compared to the ‘Baby Boomers’ generation. For example,‘Millennials’ look for their leaders to be strategic thinkers, inspirational and have strong interpersonal skills. Millennial’s will make up 50% of the global workforce by 2020, so entrepreneurs really need to tap into their younger employees and involve them in company decisions.

Fast growth usually ends badly for most businesses. Fast growth may not be manageable without the right people. Build for the future. Target small areas where you can avoid big encounters that are able to take you out of business in just a few minutes. Remember to research those ideas, make sure that the idea is feasible, and try to find a niche product with low competition and high demand, preferable something you are already familiar with. Then start implementing the idea by starting small and continue with slow and stable growth. Long term earnings are always greater than short term earnings.
If you have expertise or a passion or interest for a subject, you're ready to start making money with a blog. With a service like Blogger (www.blogger.com), you can start up your blog totally free. You can also create your own site and secure your own hosting for a low price, which is generally the route I recommend, as many free blogging sites have restrictions on what you can say or do, including making money or advertising.
"The way we’ve gotten around that is to always work with somebody on a project before we start handing over significant equity stakes or large sums of money. If the trial project goes well, then talk about expanding the scope of the relationship. Sam Altman from Y-Combinator once said something to the equivalent of 'a bad hire in the first few employees can be detrimental to a startup.' I've really taken that to heart in my business."
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