What’s the big deal? You’re a talented entrepreneur with tons to offer, quality content, and a desire to lead your industry. I’ll tell you the BIG DEAL… it’s that no one knows who you are. You’re fresh out of the gate with aspirations of being on the leader board and potentially, unrealistic expectations. You believe it’s just a matter of serving the masses a heavy dose of your skills and ideas.
You hang out your sign and fully expect the payments you deserve to flow in. I mean… it’s your time, your knowledge, and your experience…right? Well, that’s not exactly all you need. NOPE… It doesn’t always work out the way we dream it (at least not at first). You have to do a little more than SAY you’re the expert, you have to WALK it out by developing relationships with your potential customers and establish your expertise among your peers.
It’s so easy to get too far ahead of yourself here. Sometimes falling into the trap of what I call, “NEWBY BLUES” is a problem. This is when you start believing your own hype and think you should be compensated for your grand opening, but not realistically managing your expectations regarding the credibility of your NEW business. If you’ve just hung out your sign and no one knows who you are, then you may not be able to command the same pricing or respect as your competitors.
It’s in situations like this, an open mind to ROI could be helpful. ROI, for those not yet familiar with the term, is your RETURN ON INVESTMENT. I believe it’s important to be intentional as you build your brand identity and in doing so, you should always consider your returns. There are tons of articles about ROI, and there are even calculators to help you compute what yours should be. What’s a little less available is a REALITY CHECK. As you start building your brand identity, consider the following as good examples of ROI’s that aren’t often considered by new entrepreneurs. They may not be top of mind when thinking about your return, but they’re ROI’s just the same:
Experience – the more you have, the more confident you are, the more you can charge later.
R&D – Getting a better understanding of the market helps you develop better policies and service.
Exposure – Sometimes you find yourself in front of people you would have never been exposed to.