managament

3 classic business struggles & how to overcome them

Almost everyone at one point or another fantasizes about founding and running their own business. Being one’s own boss, making one’s own hours and schedules, and deciding what is right and wrong at the end of the day is very enticing. We all want some control over our daily schedules and travel abilities, and owning a business seems like the perfect avenue for achieving it.

But, like everything good, there comes the bad as well. With owning a business comes a massive amount of responsibility, stress, time management, and discipline that is required to keep it prosperous and lucrative.

Here are 3 classic struggles you will face in business and how best to overcome them.

1. TIME MANAGEMENT

Probably the number one reason people dream about running their own business is to make their own schedule and manage their own time. But, what people don’t know is that this often becomes the most difficult facet of running a business once the operation is starting to move forward.

Developing the discipline to wake up at a certain hour, work overtime, and work through weekends (often frequently) can be a huge challenge for many business owners. It’s hard to separate personal and professional matters when running a business becomes a 24-7 job.

The best way to overcome this struggle is to incorporate a great deal of organization into the foundation. Buy a daily planner, setup a digital calendar that sends alerts to your phone and laptop, hang up in-person calendars in your workspace, and hire individuals who do the exact same thing. Build an organizational system together, and you will quickly adjust to the proper required hours.

2. IT'S OK TO FAIL

No one wants to fail. No one wants to be told they did it wrong or didn't finish in the end.

Failing is almost a requirement for making it big in business. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, some of the greatest business minds of our time all failed, MULTIPLE TIMES, and even failed to complete college along the way. Business building is a trial and error process, and business owners need to be comfortable with the possible prospect of failing.

To overcome this fear, it helps to read books and magazines about other businesses and startups failures and success stories. Familiarize yourself with what failures are likely, and start developing a Plan B for if they do. Be practical about the prospect. Failure is only possible if you’re trying.

3. FINDING TIME TO UNWIND

After reading through the first two struggles, you probably guessed this one was coming last. We’ve just run through all the different demands, expectations, and stressful management that come with running and participating in a business. Everything in life comes with balance, and in order to energetically perform at all levels every day, business participants need to find time to unwind.

Mental rest and clarity are critical for optimal performance, and owners need to identify the best ways for them to ease their worried minds.

A great way to overcome this is to build in a gym period every day for stress relief. Set up a “me-time” hour for quality exercise or site seeing. Do something for yourself every day. Explore a new museum, try out a new restaurant, or buy a new book. It’s OK to take a step back. You’ll find your downtime to be some of the best brainstorming periods throughout your week.

 

These are just 3 of the many classic struggles associated with business. By accepting and studying them ahead of time, you can be prepared to successfully wrestle and conquer them. 

How to brand your small business

A word that has come to carry a lot of meaning with it in the new digital marketing era we live in today, branding is absolutely essential to building a successful and long-lasting business model. Whether you’re a small business, a corporation, or an individual, in order to resonate with consumers, you need to brand your company in a clever, memorable, and intriguing way. People want to feel they know you and your goals before they purchase something –how you brand your business instantly communicates with clients what is most important to you.

Branding is just as important for small businesses as it is for the businesses buying up ad space all over the Internet. The innate human connectedness branding taps into is relevant at all levels of the economy. With social media and instant information at our fingertips today, it is crucial that businesses build smart and unique brands that stick out against the others. If anything, it’s even more important that small businesses utilize this effective approach to marketing as a way to surpass the competition. Creativity, active social media management, blogging, and unwavering customer support are free branding channels all small businesses should be harnessing to get ahead in the game.

You may be saying to yourself “I know branding is important, but my business is doing just fine. I don’t need to worry about it.” We know social media and digital marketing are intimidating to many, but trust us, if you don’t accept this new nature of business, you will fade into irrelevance next to the businesses who are branding themselves far and wide.

The first step to branding your small business is defining your brand. Your brand character should embody and promote your business while engaging your target audience. Identify whom you want to reach and who would want your product. Build a brand that taps into their interests while also harnessing the core of your business goals.

Next, think about what drives your business. Who comes into your store every day? How old are they? What do they talk to you about? Who visits your website regularly? Who leaves reviews and what do they have to say? Really analyze who is driving your business and supporting you. Build a brand that reaches people like these ones. Bring them into your online community.

Once you identify this group, define a brand that will build long-lasting relationships with them. If they’re already supporting you, they either like your product or your business in general. Build a brand that will keep them around forever. Communicate what’s important to your business, and change what you need to keep them with you even longer.

Then, whatever you do, don’t copy other successful brands. Nothing fades faster in the eyes of consumers than unoriginal copycats. So what if your logo doesn’t look like Coca Cola? Community members and local consumers want to know your original business. They want to see something different and unique, something that catches their eye. Be unapologetically yourself. Your small business has character – they all do. Build on it.

And lastly, the most important part of actually getting your brand out there is the communication. Are you on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn? If you don’t recognize all four of those words, it’s time to hit Google for a couple hours and bring yourself up to speed with social media today. An absolutely critical (and 100% free) marketing tool, social media disseminates your brand to millions of users worldwide. Each platform has its own target audience, so it’s important to be on all of them, otherwise you’ll miss out on age groups possibly in-line with your brand. To promote your brand on social media, start a blog, and write your key words as much as you can to boost your Search Engine Optimization rankings. You want people to traverse your website every day – that’s how they discover your brand in the first place. Both social media and blogs complementary promote one another, driving millions to behold your new, original, and refined brand.

Does all of this seem overwhelming? Most of it is information you already have as a small business. You know your community, you know your clients, and you know your love for doing business at the local level. All you have to do is thoroughly analyze and identify it – and then get over your fear of social media and start posting. Here at SocialMe, we have a passion for social media and blogging. We can make you a free blog on your website instantly. We can write about whatever you want, so long as it incorporates themes synonymous with your brand. And we can post to your social media for you every single day.

So what are you waiting for? Go brand your small business and share your beautiful message with the rest of the world.