The best advice always comes from those who have walked a mile in your shoes. Read on for nuggets of wisdom from successful small business owners that you can apply to your business ventures.
Do What You Say You’re Going to Do
Entrepreneur asked Matt Qualey, the President of Qualey Granite & Stone Fabrication in Maine, for his best piece of advice for fellow small business owners. Put simply, he encourages you to do what you say you're going to do, and always do the best you can.
In business since 2003, Matt practices what he preaches. He and his team are dedicated to their clients. As explained on the about page of his site, "...if we’re not working as hard as we can to develop a solid, long term relationship with you then we’ve failed." And it shows! Anywhere you see Qualey on the web, you also see 5-star customer reviews.
Focusing on accountability is critical to your success. But don't stop with customers! Work hard to be a person of your word with employees, vendors, and anyone you interact with as the leader of your business.
Be Willing to Perservere
As you work to build your business and your brand, you are bound to make mistakes. You may even have days where you feel like throwing up your hands and saying, "forget it!".
Don't! Instead, live by the words of Garrett and Melanie Marrero - "Take hardships on the chin and keep going!". They did, and with that attitude, they co-founded the largest craft beer brewery in the state of Hawaii.
In an interview with Business Insider, the dynamic duo explained that they quit comfortable jobs and started hustling to get ahold of $500,000 to pursue their dreams, by any means necessary. They sold property, took money from 401ks, refinanced a house, borrowed from family - and at times, wondered if it was all worth it."We questioned what we had done," Melanie said.
But now, many successful years later, it's hard to recall the tough times they went through in the beginning. There were many challenges, but by overcoming obstacles, making sacrifices, and pushing forward, they realized their dreams.
Take Advantage of Free Advertising
Good marketing is a key success driver for any business - which is challenging because most marketing costs money. Early on, you likely won’t have tons of money to invest in marketing - but you have options. In an interview with Forbes, real estate entrepreneur Barbara Corcoran revealed some insight on what you can do to get started.
In her words, "Capitalize on the free online access that leads you direct[ly] to your customers. Blog, Tweet with humor, and make as many friends as you can on Facebook. You can quickly build a huge following of customers willing to try your new product without spending a dollar on advertising."
Start by creating profiles on popular sites, share blog content and company updates, give your company a voice, and start introducing your business to consumers.
Heed advice from those who know best! Accountability, perseverance, a little creativity, and time equity will carry you far in the early days.
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