Michelle is an entrepreneur and blogger that runs the personal finance and lifestyle blog, Making Sense of Cents. Since 2011, she’s been using her background in finance to write great content and grow her blog business to over $70,000 in revenue per month. Here's her business advice for new entrepreneurs who want to start a business and become gainfully self-employed:
You might have some established persons in your network, share your plans with them and seek guidance. They would be more than happy to help you solve problems that are intrinsic to your business, suggest changes that can help you reduce overheads, and even guide you on things that can help you in scaling up your marketing efforts and sales. There is nothing like learning from someone who has firsthand experience at what you are about to do or have begun doing. Seek advice from successful entrepreneurs, do your research, check case studies and base your decision on the vital knowledge that you gain out it.
You'll have a total of 2,160 points (worth £15) in your account so you can visit the 'rewards store' to choose which gift card you want, which you should do before the sale ends on Wed 24 Oct. The gift card will then arrive within 10 working days, either by post or via email in the case of voucher codes. You can also convert your earnings into PayPal cash but it costs more points (800 SB = £5 PayPal).
There’s plenty of work and clients to be found. If you know where to look. To start, you need to know if there is enough demand for your skill to make it worth the effort to go out looking for work. Start by searching for freelance postings on sites like Flexjobs, SolidGigs, Contena, greatcontent or one of the dozens of other skill-specific freelance job boards.
Aaron Lee is a social media manager and entrepreneur who has helped 500,000 people globally through his website and social media profiles. He was featured in the Huffington Post, Social Media Examiner, Mashable and was ranked #5 on Forbes Top 50 Social Media Power Influencers in 2013. He is also the Grand Master of Customer Delight at Post Planner, a platform that helps businesses gain an extra edge on Facebook.
It’s simple: great people make a great company. As your business grows, you might need to hire staff. Firstly, take the time to interview people thoroughly to ensure that they fit your culture and share your values. Secondly, it can be hard to let go but it’s important to learn how to delegate tasks. Finally, don’t expect people to be your clones. Be open to new opinions and suggestions. It’s always good to get fresh perspectives on old ways of working.
Best of all, unlike a brick-and-mortar business, you don’t need a lot of startup capital. In fact, you can get many internet businesses up and running with no money at all because so many free services facilitate the possibility. For example, you can set up a website or blog for free using WordPress. Or you can leverage a third-party site like Amazon or eBay to sell goods with no inventory costs. You use their selling platform in exchange for giving them a cut of your sales.
If you love to travel and find yourself randomly searching for airfare sales or browsing Lonely Planet, why not carve out a niche for yourself as a private travel agent? My friend, Mark Jackson did just that, making extra money online with his travel consulting side business. Start with word of mouth recommendations from friends who know they can count on you for the cheapest flights, and then move on and create a Facebook or LinkedIn group to invite people who want to stay on top of the latest deals. Eventually you could spin this into a full-time consultancy teaching people how to make their dream trip a reality.
“Ask more questions, always. Assess whether “the one method” people are telling you is the only way to go, even makes sense for you and your topic or audience. I’ve found more engaged audience members and more sales waiting on the other side of ignoring traditional advice and focusing on key questions about what my audience needs than through re-creating systems that others have used. Ask more questions, always. Does it apply to you? How can you use it without the elements of it that you don’t like? What would utterly surprise your audience at this point? If you’re asking yourself “Should I do webinars or a 10-day challenge to promote my course?”, ask instead, “In a world where webinars/challenges don’t exist, how would I ideally help people and share my product with them?” – Regina Anaejionu