Monday, 10 March 2014

Scott Assemakis: How to Succeed as a Young Entrepreneur

As Scott Assemakis points out, more and more young people decide to become entrepreneurs instead of following the less-exciting linear path of going to school, university and then finding a job.

The internet supplements these young entrepreneurs well by offering them early access to unlimited information on everything they need to get started.

But in a world with so much mixed information, how do we know who to listen to? What advice can get us real, tangible results?

Scott Assemakis’s Entrepreneurial Success: 5 Golden Rules

To address that question, we will look at Scott Assemakis’s 5 Golden Rules to success for young entrepreneurs. We use case studies to accompany these rules and demonstrate the importance and applicability of each point.

1. Follow Your Passion – But Not Blindly

This is regular advice given by people every day. We’re being told to follow our passion everywhere: TV, blogs or social media – you name it.

However, no one seems to address how to find your passion before we start following it. And so the question inevitably arises: how exactly do you find your passion before you start following it?

In our opinion, there is only one way: you try different things out.

Did you do one thing, really enjoyed it and think you just might be able to do that for potentially tens of years to come? That’s great!

Keep practicing. Keep doing it and achieve some tangible results in that specific area. Making your first money in the niche might be one example of such a tangible result.

Then look back. Are you still enjoying it as much as you did in the beginning? Is your initial enthusiasm just as pronounced, or has it faded away in time? If you’re still feeling the same way you used to, you might’ve just found (one) of your passions.

Experiment with different things. Try out whatever you think you might be interested in. Then do it for a while. Achieve some tangible results.

After you’d proved yourself that you can provide real value in the area, look back and decide if you want to keep doing it in the long run. That is the key to finding your passion.

As an extra piece of advice - while you experiment with all of these different things in your journey to finding your passion, learn generally useful skills. Become a jack of all trades. Get to know a bit of everything
Develop your communication skills. Attain basic knowledge in globally useful subjects such as Negotiation. Marketing. Accounting. Maths.

All of these will likely come in handy at some point in your life, no matter what you end up doing in the long run.

Try to do all of this while you’re young. Later on when you’ll have a spouse, mortgage and kids, your time will be much more limited – and finding your real passion does take time and dedication.

Clippykit is one great example of an entrepreneur who has experimented with different things before she found her profitable idea mostly by chance.

Calypso Rose, the founder of Clippykit, dropped out of a geography degree after just 6 weeks – plenty of time to find that being a weather girl was really not her passion as she had initially thought.

Going out of that and into starting her own business was the best decision she could make.

2. Be Flexible and Adapt Quickly

The business world is changing rapidly – especially in the era of Google, blogs and social media. Today, information travels at unprecedented speed. This has opened the door for new possibilities, especially for start-ups and small businesses.

However, one requirement of entrepreneurs that is more valid now than ever is having the ability to adapt
Andrew Slack, young founder of a very successful affiliate marketing business, has talked about the importance of adaptability, especially in rapidly-changing industries such as internet marketing.

Having a vision and sense of direction for your business is essential. You also need a highly detailed business plan – especially if you’re going to apply for finance in order to grow that business.

However, you shouldn’t be reluctant to change those initial plans as results of your work start coming in. Always look for what works best and what doesn’t in your industry, and adapt accordingly.

Try to think forward and make maximum use of new opportunities – especially in the area of internet marketing. Andrew, for example, was one of the first ones to try out things such as Facebook Advertising and promoting his brand on Twitter.

As a result of his openness to trying to leverage new technology and next-gen marketing strategies, he was able to grow his More Niche website to be one of the best in his industry.

3. Act. Learn. Build and Repeat: Scott Assemakis

This case study by Forbes has identified a proven path that increases an entrepreneur’s odds of succeeding.
As they say, the first step is to determine what it is that you want to do, and then take a small step towards that idea. The second thing is to pause for a bit and take your time to learn the lesson that resulted from your action.

Then, you can proceed to build on what you’ve learned and take it one step further. By continuing to repeat this process, your chances of success will increase considerably.

Learn from both success and failure, and apply what you learn to your future actions. Even if the whole idea fails altogether, you know that you’ve gathered a lot of experience for the next thing that you figure you’ll want to do.

Just as with finding your passion, finding a profitable idea and going for it is a repetitive process that involves active pursuit of potential markets.

4. Make Your Customers Happy

If there is one thing everyone should take away from Andrew Slack’s More Niche case study, it is making sure your customers are happy with you.

This way, they won’t even need to check out your competition – because you’re already offering them what they need and more.

By overpromising and overdelivering with your products and services, you create unique connections with your clients.

People do business with people they like – and boy will your clients like you if you understand their problems and overdeliver on the solution.

The extra time spent doing the best quality work for them will later on pay back tenfold in strong relationships and long-term commitments between you and your clients.

5. Action Trumps Everything

Entrepreneurs are people who love action. The fact is, no matter how much theory you read and how many books you buy – you won’t become an entrepreneur by simply knowing everything about the process.
You have to get out there and act. That is the first step, and also the best method to learn. Because action is so important, Forbes has dedicated a whole resource page dedicated to motivation and doing as opposed to passively aspiring about results.

To be a successful entrepreneur, you need to try things out yourself and learn the lessons. Risk small at first. The internet is one great place to start exploring with new ideas for cheap – especially as a young entrepreneur.

Go out there and find your own idea. Learn. Act. Build.

Connect With Scott Assemakis

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