Becoming a successful solo entrepreneur is not as easy as one might think. Seeing all the success stories of established entrepreneurs, people often forget all the work and hardship that went into them behind the scenes.
It requires a lot of endurance and determination to establish yourself as a solo entrepreneur. An estimated 90 percent of new businesses fail, with around 21.5 percent of them failing in their first year.
While it is true that just about anyone can become a successful entrepreneur with the right mindset and idea, there is a lot more to it than just having an idea and getting started. So, here are five tips to help you establish yourself as a solo entrepreneur:
1. Find your industry or niche
There are a plethora of industries and niches to choose from. However, to excel at something, you absolutely need to make a choice. You need to focus on a specific industry and a specific niche to concentrate your efforts on.
Finding the right niche comes down to personal preference and research. Depending on what you are interested in, you might end up in a creative industry, a manufacturing-centered industry, or in some of the many other available industries.
Once you have chosen an industry that intrigues you, the deciding factor for which niche you should choose is going to be the research. Knowing the typical going rates and profit margins, as well as other market dynamics, is key when you are looking to start a profitable, scalable business venture.
2. Research the market
Researching the market is not only important when you are deciding on which industry and the niche you want to work in. It is also an essential aspect of staying on top of the competition. You need to be aware of the supply and demand dynamics of your market and related markets.
Further, you should know what competitors in your field charge for their services. This can either help you adjust your pricing to be more in line with your competition’s or you can use this information to undercut your competition to gain more sales with sales analytics.
3. Educate yourself
Education and certifications are an easy way to set yourself apart from competitors and make potential customers more likely to choose you instead of someone else. Additionally, by gathering knowledge about your area of business, you can optimize your operations to generate more revenue.
There are many ways to educate yourself, such as podcasts or online courses, and they exist for every niche. Further, many lessons are applicable across multiple industries and niches. For example, Jai Long, who is originally a successful business coach focused on wedding photographers, also hosts the podcast Make Your Break, which is aimed at creative entrepreneurs.
Jai Long has educated many entrepreneurs and helped them establish themselves and their unique vision. “I see entrepreneurs working so hard trying to reach their unrealistic goals but they don’t have a road map, the right mindset, and the framework to turn that hard work into smart work. It’s like trying to get somewhere by running on the treadmill, it doesn’t matter how much you turn it up and how hard you run, you don’t get anywhere,” he said.
“Once you have the knowledge you need, a proven roadmap to follow, you can make a much bigger impact with the little time you have. I am all for hard work, trust me, I am relentless with growing my business and helping others do the same, but I am also relentless with making an impact. The quicker we can drop what doesn’t work and double down on what moves the needle the most, the quicker you will be able to chase your goals as the entrepreneur you dream to become,” continued Long.
4. Build your business
Scaling and growing a business should be a priority for every entrepreneur. While it is definitely an option to run a business at a small level and purposefully keep it that way, this is not what an entrepreneur should strive to do.
By growing your business and, consequently, its revenue, you are able to explore other business ventures and build a portfolio. This will help you further establish yourself as an entrepreneur.
Another important aspect of establishing yourself as a solo entrepreneur is advertising. You can put in all the work you want, but it won’t be of any use if you don’t get the word out there and make people aware of your existence. You can create awareness for your business by distributing advertising flyers, posters, brochures, billboards, newspaper articles, magazines, and many other materials. Do not forget to add your business logo design for branding purpose.
Fortunately, it is pretty easy to create awareness in this day and age. For one, you can run online advertisements. However, more importantly, you can use social media, such as Instagram, YouTube, or Facebook, to showcase your skills and your business.
By growing an audience on social media platforms, you can enhance your reach, which, combined with advertising, will lead to massive revenue increases and help you scale your business.