If you're a regular reader of Purple Frog blog posts, then you might remember the blog I posted not too long ago talking about my Social Media Success Story,if not you can click here to read it now. Keeping it short and to the point it's about how I opened a retail / cosmetic shop on Etsy, and how Instagram quadrupled my sales. On that note, now roughly 6 months down the road I thought I'd share some things I've learned along the way for any other first time entrepreneurs. Even if you're further along than I am you still might find some interesting points that could help you onward!
Don't Be Afraid Of Risks
This one might seem obvious, but then again it could be what's stopping some people from actually getting started. Obviously the first thing you'll have to do when starting your own business is take a risk, nothing is guaranteed but that's where you should find excitement. The thrill and exhilaration you get from seeing if something works can be so rewarding as long as you fully commit.
Avoid getting side-tracked, this can be really hard at times because if you're like me, you would ve been absolutely bubbling with a million different ideas. Being a first time entrepreneur, if you listen to all of those ideas going around in your head instead of focusing on the ones you already have to improve and make them a reality you will end up will spreading yourself thin and limit your effectiveness and productivity. If you feel the need to jump onto another project, that might mean something about your original concept so make sure you stay realistic as well as focused.
Keep A Journal
This is a good step towards staying focused, if you are full of ideas you should write them down to avoid getting distracted. This way you wont forget about them either when the time comes to act on them (or rule them out of course). Personally, I write 5 to 10 ideas down every day as good practice because ideas spark off of each other, its like an ongoing brainstorm that organises your thoughts and puts them into a form where you can reference them with ease at a later date.
Learn to Work Under Pressure
Okay, this was probably one of my biggest personal struggles. Working under pressure can get super overwhelming but there's nothing you can do about it, so learn to roll with it. Yet again, linking with the previous point, I found that writing things down in a journal made working under pressure a lot easier. I would write everything down so that I wouldn't forget anything because personally I start to go mentally blank when I'm under massive amounts of pressure. At the beginning I didn't used to keep a journal which was a massive mistake, but the most important thing you can do is learn from your mistakes.
I'm not going to preach to you about healthy eating, believe me, I'm no health nut, I live next to a McDonalds and eat it all too often. What I'm referring to when I say stay healthy is that entrepreneurship is a lifestyle, not a 9-to-5 profession. It can run you down to the point of exhaustion but you can't let it burn you out! You will be much more productive when you take better care of yourself, eat right (most of the time), exercise and find time for yourself. I suggest that you commit to a regular workout schedule because in my experience my gym membership was useless. It wasn't until I started to book classes that were scheduled that I started to go and I can honestly say that it reduces stress massively.
Don't Fall Victim to Your Own Procrastination.
Procrastination is not a word that should be in your vocabulary as an entrepreneur, I found out the hard way. Sure procrastination is never a good thing, but when it comes to something thats as fast paced as this things double up on you much faster than you'd ever expect. Do things when they arise, stick to a schedule, never get behind because it will run you down and it will be so much herder to deal with than just sorting it out in the first place. Do NOT be lazy!
There are places such as Quora where people go to ask questions, you could take this opportunity to gain exposure by answering them (relevant ones of course). You could even so searching for some people with relevant questions on social media but this would be a bit more tedious (but if you happen to stumble across some, go for it!). The point of this - answering relevant questions - is to come across as an expert in your field to those that come across you or your business. This not only helps establish your expertise but it is also cool to look back at your answers and see how much you’ve grown personally and professionally by re-reading your previous answers, and you'll likely gain customers.
Learn Something Everyday
You should get used to solving problems and learning on the go. Learning new things should fill you with excitement, as entrepreneurs we should be learning something new every day. That’s part of the journey! Spend time learning about your direct competitors too, what type of things are they posting on social media? Can you any inspiration from their successes? Be creative with what you learn from those who have been in the business longer than you and have more experience.
Don't Be Scared To Ask For Help
SO many people go wrong here, there is nothing wrong with putting your pride aside to better yourself and your business. Starting a business for the first time can be too much to handle on your own, by asking for help you can avoid mistakes and make the process run a lot smoother.
Never Give Up
If you’re an entrepreneur, act like one. Ignore the naysayers, if anything let them be motivation for you to work harder so you can prove them wrong. If you fail with one idea, start the search for another because nothing should hold you back. You’re an entrepreneur, no matter what, whether up or down, success or failure, you’re always an entrepreneur.
I hope you used your entrepreneur journal to take notes throughout! If you have any tips that I maybe haven't mentioned, feel free to comment them below. We would love to hear what you have learned through your experiences, my journal is open and I'm ready to take notes!