How To Take Risks When Starting A Business

Risks are part and parcel of daily life.

From the moment those prominent rays of sunlight usher themselves into your home and dictate a new morning, to the moment you lay your head on the pillow after a long industrious day; you’re always taking a risk.

In fact, nature has engineered us to be risk takers. Heck, even your marriage proposal was a risk. Because the flip side of the coin is…

They could have always said no

As adept as humans are at risk taking, we’ve become coy about it, especially if one is aspires to be an entrepreneur.

But why is this the case?

Laxity; modernity has instilled in us a fear of the unknown. No longer are we the valiant conquerors that once traversed foreign lands and explored the wilderness.

Not that we’re complaining or anything; because who’d rather be hunting a wild-boar instead of digging their teeth into a juicy burger delivered right at the door?

Exactly.

That being said, what kind of risks should you consider taking before starting your own business and how do you handle them? Here are a couple that you might need to face along the way.


Saying goodbye to that steady paycheck

Before you stamp the word ‘entrepreneur’ on your LinkedIn bio, you might have to say goodbye to your current employment position.

And this sucks.

Because most entrepreneurs rarely have a solid financial backup in case things go south. So once you venture into the realm of business, it’s safe to say that you’re on your own.

Plus there’s no guarantee that you’ll get a steady personal income once you kick start the business.

Bracing for tough times ahead?

Then it’s probably a good idea to be a bit more stringent with your spendingespecially for the first couple of months (or even years) of building your business.

Which then brings us to…


Saving an extra penny for the growth of the startup

Become a successful small business owner

Every Saturday evening, you always had a candlelit dinner at the Chateau le-something with the mister or missus.

And the tab always came to a whopping $400 per meal, right?

But ever since you aspired to leave the confines of your 9 to 5 to become a small business owner, the money has gotten tighter.

In fact, you’ve even had to dip into your savings just to finance some of the projects that run your business.

Especially if your crowd funding didn’t go so well. Or the recent grants/loans you took to start the business are currently overwhelming your financial structure.

All in all, prepare to cut out some of the luxury in your life to uplift the enterprise.


Sacrificing personal time to meet the company’s objectives

It takes time to build an empire. But if you’re passionate about it, you might find yourself working100 hours a week just to perfect your company’s business model and meet the stipulated deadlines you set.

This might mean missing out on some family time and sleepfor the benefit of improving your business acumen.


Acknowledging that you can’t do it alone

Even the savviest of entrepreneurs know that they can’t build a successful enterprise without the collective effort of their business partners, friends, and investors.

Everything from financial to emotional support is vital in keeping an entrepreneur focused.

So if you’re riding solo, perhaps it’s time to consider bringing in a sidekick to help you realize your vision and brand!

All in all, every successful entrepreneur understands that business and risk taking go hand in hand. And in the famous words of Roman Philosopher Lucius Annaeus Seneca:

“It’s not because things are difficult that we dare not venture. It’s because we dare not venture that they are difficult”

The Attention Show News: Live Streaming Your Business

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Click here to watch the full episode on YouTube.


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Anytime there is a new social media app and/or platform, everyone makes a mad dash to try it out. Meerkat is the latest app that has everyone from local tech folks live streaming shoveling snow to people like Gary Vaynerchuk setting up Meerkats of his #AskGaryVee show. Many are still toying with this new tool. The question on everyones mind is “Can my business benefit from Meerkat?”

Meerkat has an element of SnapChat to it. It is organic, has unscripted human elements and allows you to provide real time updates. These updates, by the way, will be “broadcast” to your followers who will be engaged with what you have to say since they opted into following you.

Meerkat is a perfect opportunity to open the door to your office and showcase your culture. For example, you could live stream a video tour or even a happy hour. Meerkat is also great for live streaming a new product or service launch. Founder Ben Rubin calls it “spontaneous togetherness” and this element of Meerkat is something businesses can certainly take advantage of.

Want to watch more episodes of The Attention Show? Click here!

The Secret Sauce of Snapchat

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Don’t have time to watch the full episode? Click here to watch the full episode filmed using Snapchat!

 

New business tools that are designed to create more customer engagement are always being introduced. It is up to the business owners and us marketers to identify the best tools and most creative ways to use those tools to create the necessary engagement that will then help grow your business.

We know the big players like Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and even Instagram. Many however, don’t include Snapchat in this conversation. Because it’s impossible to save or keep a message, marketers view this as less than ideal for building a brand or sharing.

They are all wrong.

An average of 21 million viewers per week tune into NBC’s broadcast of “Sunday Night Football” and 14.8 million people tuned into watch the midseason finale of “The Walking Dead”. But how many people watched a video broadcast on their phones showing unique sights and sounds of New York City’s “Snowpocalypse” filmed by mostly teens or adults in their 20’s? Who, by the way, are not professionals and are simply Snapchat users.

25 million! Thats how many!

The New Advertising Platform

While Snapchat does not run advertising in its “Snapstories”, they are in discussions with marketers on implementing this idea. They are certain to run ads in the future as there has never been a better content format with “Snapstories”. Why are these stories so great and how can they help build your brand? After all, these pictures and videos can’t be saved.

The Demographic is Right

According to Business Insider Intelligence, more than 60% of Snapchat users are in the coveted 18-24 age group. Among millennials, Snapchat is even more popular than Twitter!

The Audience is Completely Engaged

Facebook and YouTube videos offer the consumer an escape route. With both, users can simply leave an ad open in another tab or skip it all together. Snapchat however allows marketers to see if their ads are being viewed as users have to press and hold a button on the screen.

Great, Unique, Content

Snapchat allows consumers intimate access to big events like the Oscars Red Carpet or the post-Oscars party and even events on a smaller scale like a Syracuse basketball game in the Carrier Dome. Users can gain an inside look and feel as if one of their friends is giving them access to one of these types of events.

Snapchat story

Building a Brand on a Temporary Medium

Photos and videos are temporary, as a result you can’t build a brand using this platform right? Wrong. Repetition and consistency, that was the name of the game in the past when it came to growing your brand. Now however, brands utilize different attributes like authenticity and humor, adding a human element in place of repetition.

This is a match made in heaven for Snapchat. There is nothing more authentic than a brand engaging with consumers in an way that is unconventional and missing a number of the traditional branding elements. What’s more human than catching one of your co workers sleeping in a meeting or the president of the company playing Mario Cart in the office cafe? These not so serious moments are perfect for Snapchat. It allows users to receive instant updates from their friends day-to-day at the office and invites their network of followers to connect with the brand.

How Can Your Business Use Snapchat?

Exclusives & Promotions

Use Snapchat to tell your customers about any special sales or events. You can even give your most valued customers the VIP treatment by sending an invitation-only Snapchat, inviting them to a special sale or opening.

A frozen yogurt chain called 16 Handles is a great example of this. For their Snapchat campaign, they gave customers a unique and varying discount when they visited one of their stores and opened the snap from the register. The customer however, had no idea what the discount was until they were about to pay for their yogurt.

For companies that have an eCommerce store or an actual store presence, this can be a great way to take advantage of how temporary Snapchat is while engaging with users on a much different platform.

Customer Support

With Snapchat you can provide real time customer service in a way many other companies aren’t. With quick videos, you can provide assistance if a customer is having trouble with one of your services or products. One example of this is if a customer is having trouble replacing batteries in your product and they send you a picture of the issue. You can respond with a photo or video of your own demonstrating the easiest way to replace the batteries. This establishes trust amongst consumers and emphasises your dedication to customer satisfaction.

Preview New Products/Services

If you are offering a new service or have a new product you will be releasing, introduce it with a photo or video demonstrating it. For example, if you are a shoe store and have the brand new shoe that everyone is looking to get, showcase it and let everyone know your store is the place to go. You can also give your customers the chance to order it before it hits the shelves.

Conclusion

Setting up a Snapchat account is simple and downloading the app takes you through the process step by step. Once you are set up, what should you expect?

  1. Showcase the human aspect of your brand, allowing them behind the scenes and connecting them other platforms can’t.
  2. Creating content for engaged users on a platform that is even more popular than Twitter amongst millennials.
  3. Utilizing a channel your competition is still trying to figure the best way they can grow their business on.

Thinking about utilizing Snapchat for your business? Email us at whatsnext@thegoodmonster.com, and we’ll help you out.