LinkedIn Marketing Strategy Blog
Top 6 Mistakes when Starting an Online Business
The traditional view of ‘working’ just doesn’t cut it any more.
The “American Dream” of working your way from the bottom up, and you’ll be set up for life is dying out. More and more employees are reporting a lack of opportunity for advancement in their company AND there is a growing dissatisfaction among employees at larger companies.
If you want to take back control of your life and get the freedom that goes with it you have a couple options:
- Rob a bank. Not the smartest idea if you prefer staying out of jail.
- Win the lottery. Notoriously low odds. So low that you are better off burning your $2 dollars every week – at least you’ll have a heat source that way.
- Break free of the grind and be your own boss. Work on something you’re passionate about that actually helps your customers AND generates the kinds of Money that will grant you the freedom to work when and how you want.
Now #3 is the obvious no-brainer unless you are delusional (#2) OR a criminal (#1).
So it’s that easy, right? Just be your own boss and you’ve got it made in the shade?
Because of my job I get to deal with self-employed or independent business owners every single day AND having launched multiple 7-figure businesses myself, I’ve come to learn a mistake or two (or 6) that most online business owners make.
So below I’m going to share what I’ve learned and the patterns I’ve seen nearly all of these people do incorrectly.
1. Your Ideas Aren't Worth a Penny
People who like to “think” they are entrepreneurial seem to be everywhere these days.
Everyone’s got a “million dollar idea.” But almost all of them don't have a million dollar business.
Most people off the street will tell me which business on Shark Tank is dumb or fantastic. But most don't get off their ass and put in the ACTION that’s needed to succeed.
That’s what separates a true entrepreneur from a phony.
Spend more of your time taking action and executing the work and less time thinking and overthinking.
You may see this referred to as your MVP (minimum viable product), but really what you need to do is not overthink or chase every shiny object, but set a plan AND act on that plan as soon as humanly possible.
You can adjust or pivot as needed.
Thoughts and ideas are cheap. You won’t know anything until you act.
Which leads me to my next point, how do you know if the idea or product or service is something worthwhile…
2. Nobody Wants Your Product or Service
Our brains have evolved to the point of being pretty effin’ great at convincing ourselves that our ideas are bulletproof and people are going to be lining up to buy what we're selling.
Here’s the fact, they aren’t necessarily.
You won’t know how much your audience wants your product or service until you put it out there for them to use.
You have a couple options.
- Create something wholly original or unique. Something the world has never even seen before and HOPE it's something they want.
- Follow the framework of a proven market and improve upon this demonstrated service. Think about it! This is what every company from Netflix to Facebook to Shake Shack has done. Build upon a proven system and differentiate yourself.
Or take a look at what we do.
We help small business owners grow their business by building relationships and generating sales appointments.
Every business needs more opportunities to sell their product or service to the people most likely to buy from them, right?
If you ain’t busy growing, you’re busy dying. Generating new business is a NEED for small business owners.
3. Royally Screwing Up Your Introduction
Another area I see all too often with new and even some experienced entrepreneurs is that they have a great idea or even a great product or service, BUT they don’t know how to introduce their audience to their solution.
And if they can’t even get them interested enough to look in through the window, how are they going to get them through the door?
With the internet there are a MILLION ways to get your audience familiar with you and your service before going for the kill and asking them to write you a big, FAT check.
Start by providing them a glimpse at your expertise with a low-price or free ebook or blog or strategy call where you provide ACTUAL value without the need for a large scale investment.
The key here is offering this value in a way that is easy to deliver on. You shouldn’t spend all your time giving free advice to each person, if it leaves you no time to deliver on your real work or actually closing sales.
Be smart about it. We offer people low-price content and courses as a way to get them familiar with the value and expertise that we provide. And we then have a structure in place to interest the right people to ascend to our higher priced programs.
If you can get a customer to say yes to a lower priced option, it will build momentum and make it easier to get them to say yes to a higher priced program.
Simply put, if you can provide something valuable to your customers at a lower-risk price, then they’ll trust you at the higher prices. People want to see under the hood before buying the car, so show it to them!
4. Who's Going to Buy This Anyway?
Who will buy your product or service?
Seems like a simple enough question, but you’d be surprised how unspecific most businesses can be when answering this question.
Start with targeting the people you’ve worked with or had success with in the past.
Go after a niche segment and build out your customer roster from there.
You can always expand to target wider ranges of people, but you need to get your first customers on-board to test your service and refine it before you start talking about world domination.
5. Doing It By Yourself
Look being your own boss is liberating.
You have freedom – if I want to go catch a Cardinals game on a Friday afternoon I don’t need to submit a PTO approval request to my manager, I just go. But I also get to make decisions and work on what I believe in.
You can make an impact – I get to see first-hand the effects of the work I care about on the lives of my employees, my customers, and even my family. The happier you are at work, the happier you are at home.
And you can make money – These 3 (Money, Freedom, and Impact) are what we call the Trifecta. It's what every business owner or self-sufficient adult is in need of.
It's my goal to help you achieve this Trifecta. That's why we have put together a complete behind-the-scenes playbook to exactly how I've grown multiple online companies to 7-figures, you should check out our upcoming workshop on the “3 Keys to Escape the 9-to-5 and Make 6 Figures Online!”
The fact is: no man is an island, and no company is either. Just because you are self-employed or running your own company, doesn't have to mean that you are alone.
There is an ever-growing community of people out there just like you, who are working for themselves or running their own business.
Tap into the brainpower of those who have been where you are right now and learn how thousands of others are utilizing this exact plan to:
- Generate 6-figure years by providing a HIGHLY valued service online.
- The 3 immutable laws to any online business – if you successfully implement these 3 items, you will not fail.
- Our internal 6-step action plan to attract and close your first customers within weeks.
- And a whole lot more!
6. Not Giving It a Try
What’s holding you back?
There's a reason you've read this far, and turning back now makes no sense.
Fear isn’t a real excuse to not take the plunge.
If anything you should fear doing nothing and staying in your current job. A recent PWC study compared the happiness levels from employees at large companies vs. small companies vs. self-employed/independents.
While the larger businesses had only 27% reporting feeling happy at work, and astounding 81% of independent workers report being happier since becoming independent, and 60% report being healthier.
Those are some INSANE numbers!
And we want to help you get started. Below is a case study from a consultant who left an unfulfilling career to start his own consulting firm.
He went from zero to 13 retainer clients in just under 4 months. Look, this isn't impossible. You just have to take the leap.
Download the case study below.