Thursday, September 8, 2011

What you need to know before you start your publishing/speaking business

I love owning my own business, and I love helping my clients create their own publishing companies from the ground up. While it's rare that one of our micropublishers turns into a full blown publishing operation where they take on the business on their own, it does happen and there are many things to learn as they grow into an entrepreneurial role.

I always caution my clients:
 You have a creative side and an analytical/logical side -- make sure they aren't crossing over
and letting the creative side make business decisions and the business side make creative decisions.

I recently contributed to a well known entrepreneurial blog, where the question was "What do you wish you'd known when you first started your business?"  Here is the introduction to the blog and a link to the 100 things recommended by her entrepreneur network. 

Reprinted with permission from Carol Roth's Blog:
100+ Things You Need to Know Before You Start Your Business

As many of you know, I often talk about “Business Beer Goggling“- the phenomena of being so intoxicated with your new business idea/venture that your view of reality is completely distorted. So, to help you take off those beer goggles and sober up, I have asked the contributor network of entrepreneurs and experts to use their 20/20 hindsight and provide the one main thing that they wish they knew before they started their businesses. Their answers are presented below in no particular order.

You may notice some similar insights, but I kept the concepts separate, as something in the way one is framed may resonate differently with you.

1. FOCUS!!!

I wish I would have realized that the more focused and specific our company's niche, the more easily understood and referred our services would have been.

Everyone's heard the saying, "A jack of all trades is a master of none," but many people, when starting a business, don't take this to heart. Focus on what you do best and partner with others who can help you succeed!
Thanks to: Rocky Walls of 12 Stars Media.

As you read on......I'm #21
21. Integrity Isn't Reciprocal

My first year in business was easy. I did what I promised and people paid their bills. Of course, many of my first clients were writers I already knew. A couple of years into my venture, new clients found me through our website. When I first started doing books for those I didn't know, I continued using email and verbal okays. I did what I promised, but they didn't always. Once Bitten, Twice Shy, as they say. Have a formal contract with legal oversight and clearly share expectations. Document everything.
Thanks to: Lisa Pelto of Concierge Marketing & Publishing.

Here's the link to the rest of the article:  100 things you need to know

Moral of all this to any new author, publisher, or small business -- make sure you know who you are doing business with, focus your business, check out your customers and vendors, have faith in yourself, accept that you will now be a salesperson first and a writer second, and then GO FOR IT.

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