Monthly Archives: August 2009

The E-Attitudes: So You Want To Be An Entrepreneur?

8 Tips for Entrepreneurs That Will Keep You Off Your Mom’s Couch

mommys_little_entrepreneur_tshirt-p235697830807811550q0aj_4008 ) DIE
No, not literally – although death sometimes seems like a carousel ride compared to the exercise of starting a business. You do, however, have to put aside your own personal wants in order for your “baby” to grow and develop into a mature business. The sooner you realize your business isn’t all about you, the better. Creating, constructing and maintaining a viable company will  take away your pride and self-reliance and show you what you’re truly made of.  Die fast.

 

7) STOP LYING
It’s the biggest lie ever told and each year countless victims fall prey to its merciless trap. It’s the myth: I’m great at doing this! Everyone knows me for doing this! That must mean I’d be great at running a business doing this!” Get this in your head… being a great baker and owning a bakery are 2 completely separate things. In fact, beyond the yummy smell of cream cheese cake, they don’t have very much in common. Learn the business of what you’re good at before you try to make a living doing it.

 

6) BRING AN UMBRELLA-ELLA-ELLA…
This one’s simple. Life happens and storms will come. You may run out of money, get sued, lose all your client files, experience a tragedy or get poked in the eye. No matter what obstacle comes, you absolutely must first STOP, THINK, DON’T PANIC and then use your brain to get through it. Your umbrella is your peace, your faith, your trust and your hope. It really does work… you just have to bring it along and open it up.

 

PancreasA5) THE P-WORD
It’s the single-most important thing. You can’t live without it. Everyone has one. If you don’t use it your life will inevitably suck. Nope, not your pancreas – though you do need that. It’s your purpose! Fish were formed to swim, birds were born to fly and you were made to (fill in the blank).  Build your business around your life, not your life around your business. Figure out why you were born, pursue it, and the money and resources will come.

 

4) DON’T FORGET YOUR WALLET
At the day’s end, business is still about money. Money is the objective. Even in a non-profit organization your goal is to raise the money and then use it for a meaningful cause. Realize that you will need plenty of it to start a business. And then learn a thing or two about accounting, finances, credit, taxes and all the business basics. It’s the language of industry and without it you’re deaf, dumb and mute.

 

office-space3) YOUR BOSS IS AN IDIOT
It’s a hard pill to swallow but it has great results. If you’re starting and running your business, you must realize that you work for the most incompetent, unqualified boss ever – you! You won’t have all the answers and (gasp!) you won’t feel like working all the time. At the end of the day you can only do so much. That’s why it’s vital to build a business model that works, not because of you, but without you. There are only 3 ways to get rid of the idiot lurking inside you: 1) read books 2) meet smart people 3) learn from your mistakes.

 

2) DANCE WITH THE SIAMESE TWINS
Adversity is ALWAYS tied to opportunity. They are conjoined at the hip and where you see one, the other is not too far away. The new economic climate and convergence of technology has created countless opportunities for new ways of doing business. Many traditions are becoming void while new business models are sprouting. Creativity thinks up new things, innovation does new things. Be a doer. Don’t play by the old rules. Create new ones and opportunity will come knocking.

 

1) SOLOMON SAYS
A long time ago, men wore togas and lived life slow. King David had a son, Solomon. Solomon was young and inexperienced but he was given one of the biggest real estate development projects ever. He was to build a great temple. His father told him 5 simple words, “Be strong and do it.” Same goes for you. Great ideas are everywhere. The success of your business will be in the execution. Businesses all fail for the same reason – they give up. Keep working at it and don’t give up if it’s truly what you are meant to do. Remember, the brick walls are there to show how bad we really want something. Solomon finished it, why can’t you? I’m sure he’d agree: Be Strong And Do It!

 
You really can...

You really can...

BONUS:  If you only read 1 book this year, make it a classic. Michael Gerber’s E-Myth:Why Most Small Businesses Fail And What You Can Do About It. This $10 will save you thousands.

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reBlog from ducttapemarketing.com: Small Business Marketing Blog from Duct Tape Marketing

I found this fascinating quote today:

1) Turn your service into a product – selling services is a little like selling air. By making your offerings more productlike you can create something tangible while your competitors continue to offer solutions driven, customer centric services. Give your services a name – install your solution – offer a set deliverable, with set outcomes at a set price and watch how easy it becomes to explain and sell. The other advantage of a packaged program offering with a set price is that it allows you to rise above the hourly wage. When you sell your time you are capped and compared, when you sell a product or program, you are free to sell the value of the program without regard for the cost that goes into making it. As you become more effective at delivering your program you create the greatest path for getting paid on value delivered rather than hours input.ducttapemarketing.com, Small Business Marketing Blog from Duct Tape Marketing, Aug 2009

You should read the whole article.

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What happens when a marketing guy cleans out his closet?

Random Guy:  Hey what do you do?

Adrian ParkerOh, I’m in the marketing field.

RG:  Oh! You make TV commercials?

APKind of… I set the strategy and then manage the creative process with…

RG:  You shoot the commercials? You come up with the ideas, right?

APNo, I don’t shoot them myself. We hire people…

RG:  Wait… so what do you do? Who actually does the marketing?

APWell, it’s a collaboration.

RG: [walking away] Yeah right…

Good ol’ marketing. From the 4 P’s and cognitive dissonance to junk mail and Super Bowl ads… it’s arguably the most overused and least understood term in business today.  At its lowest denominator, to many it’s fliers, coupons and branded golf balls.  But for those of us who know, we realize it’s the art and science of driving action and delivering results. Disagree? Don’t take my word for it, hear it from an “expert.”

I was literally going thru my closet when I uncovered  2 of my old leather portfolio books. One was from my days interning at a PR firm in Florida. In addition to quickly remembering how much slave labor they got out of me, I actually realized I had some darn good work – even by today’s standards. The 2nd folder was from my 5 years in athletic retail managing media, advertising & brand development for Foot Locker & Footaction USA. Wow! Good times. Of course, then I started looking for ALL the programs I had managed… from fashion shows for 50-year old women to Danity Kane’s CD release party.

“Why is all this stuff just sitting here?” I had to ask myself.

Well, as you may have guessed, I didn’t have any excuse for keeping yesterday’s marketing heat to myself. The leftovers are looking pretty good so I hope you enjoy.

Some folks call it a portfolio… and I guess it is.  Truth be told, it’s a Thank You card.

Thanks to all the great clients who let me touch their brands and the agencies that made me look like a rock star.

Thanks to the 16-hour days, weekend conference calls, crack of dawn Starbucks runs, media turf wars & GRP spreadsheets that  pale in comparsion to the excitement of doing a good job for your brand, your team and your customers.

Good times indeed.

I wonder how many logos I can fit in this box?

You look at these logos and see brands. Not me. I see a bald head... a big one... the one they gave me. 🙂

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