What you need to know to be a successful entrepreneur

Chase the vision, not the money, the money will end up following you “ – Tony Hsieh, Zappos CEO

 

Mark Zucherberg, Richard Branson, Reggie Brown, Evan Spiegel are all names you’ve heard of or even people who you’ve looked up to. Entrepreneurs come in different shapes and sizes, educational and economic backgrounds but there’s not many things that are common except for the passion, perseverance, never say die attitude and the ability to take risks that comes with the job.

In order to get to where they are, you can bet your bottom dollar that they’ve faced hardships, made numerous mistakes, and tried various things before they perfected their business.

 

The difference between most entrepreneurs, you will notice is their attitude. Either to persevere or to give up when faced with adversity, to not let competition pull you down or shut shop when there are a few bad reviews. It takes a lot more to be a good entrepreneur.

 

What makes them successful?

 They:

  1. Figure out what they want to do; and take baby steps towards their goal
  2. Pause in-between steps to see how far they’ve come and reassess their next step. It’s more a routine of Act.Pause.Learn.Pause.Build.Pause.Repeat
  3. Deal with uncertainty and contingency by experience and not just theoretical plans that have been put in place.
  4. Put yourself out there and try new things and at some point you will figure out what you’re good at and stick to it.
  5. See over every detail of your business. It’s good to look at the big picture but also the smaller details. Especially the case when you’re just starting out.
  6. Never give up-No matter what! They’ll always be moments that bring you down, leave you faithless and competitors will try to cut you off. But, remember why you started your business and stick to it.
  7. Get out of your comfort zone– It’s important to stay scared in the beginning. Some call it staying hungry and some call it staying scared. Either way, the sentiment’s bottom line is the same. Which is to use it as an important motivator.  Go outside of your comfort zone, learn to survive, grow and evolve.
  8. Create what the market needs: This is an important thing you will find most entrepreneurs doing. There are a lot of people with a lot of ideas out there but not every idea is a lucrative business to pursue. If you begin with a current market need, you have a market that is already present with the people who need what you have.
  9. Don’t begin by thinking you will be rich and famous: Believe it or not, entrepreneurs don’t’ have money, success or fame as their goal but rather the by-product.  They begin by working on their product or service, perfecting it until they’re the best at it. The fame, fortune and success will follow on it’s own.
  10. Push yourself harder
  11.                   Learn to finance your business well: Begin with sufficient financing before you move on
  12.        Manage your time well: Remember that time is money
  13.               Learn to function as teams and play to everyone’s strengths
  14.                   Turn Obstacles into assets
  15.                 Learn to say ‘NO’ when the need arises. It’s essential to say no to some great ideas in order to get to the brilliant ones.

 

“The value of an idea lies in the using of it.”—Thomas Edison, General Electric Co-founder

 

 We hope that these 15 tips from successful entrepreneurs and business owners will help motivate you and give you  the ideas you need to keep surging ahead.

 

“Make every detail perfect and limit the number of details to perfect.” —Jack Dorsey, Twitter co-founder

There’s nothing wrong with staying small. You can do big things with a small team.” —Jason Fried, 37signals founder

What tips do you use for your business? Let us know!

-Social Pandora

 

15 TIPS TO KEEP YOU INSPIRED AND PRODUCTIVE WHEN YOU FEEL LIKE GIVING UP

a dream is never big unless you make it happen

Some days are good days at work, and some days are downright hard. We read about the many success stories of entrepreneurs and what motivates them ,gets them to be so productive all the time. Unfortunately success does not come easily for everyone. Chances are you will soon be giving up on your venture before you can even fully experience the success you’ve been aspiring for. But you never know, tomorrow might be your lucky day! And you would have wished you hadn’t given up today.

To keep yourself motivated or inspired when the Going get’s tough. Here are our top tips.

TIP 1:  “Begin your day Early’:  Sounds cliched but it’s true and works every time. Entrepreneurs wake up early and begin their day healthy. Drink plenty of water and stay fit to help you throughout the day.

TIP 2: Plan your day:  Write down your top 5 tasks that you need to accomplish today.

TIP 3: Set achievable goals: Some entrepreneurs set high goals in the beginning of their venture which sometimes results in disappointments. Set realistic goals with proper timelines. Make use of Gantt charts to help you set smaller more achievable goals. They will then push you to achieve more once each goal is fulfilled.

TIP 4: The 50/10 rule:  It’s easy to get distracted or side tracked at work so try avoiding that by applying the 50/10 rule which is  50 minutes of work with a 10 minute break to refocus.

TIP 5: Keep your mind on the Big Picture:  When you begin your business, no doubt you have pictured yourself basking in the glory of your success after a few years. But if you haven’t gotten there within a few years, don’t give up. Keep that big picture, your dream in your mind and carry on.

TIP 6: Make sure that your work environment is comfortable– Spending a large amount of time in front of the computer can be hard so ensure that your chair is adjusted properly, and that your room is airy and well ventilated and free of distraction.

TIP 7: Change your work environment every now and then: If your work is the kind where you can take it anywhere, then move! Either to a different room at your office, your home, to a library, a nice comfortable public spot with Wi-Fi access or your backyard, anywhere where you’re comfortable because a change in scenery helps with the creative thinking.

TIP 8: Take timely breaks:  If you feel yourself becoming drowsy, low in energy or that you’ve hit a blank spot. Take a break! Get up and take a walk, run an errand maybe, get some coffee or green tea. Each break renews or refreshes you plus gets you to move a bit giving you more energy and a chance to think laterally.

TIP 9: Reflect and self- evaluate: Set aside 10 minutes at the end of your day everyday to just reflect and self evaluate. Rethink your goals, your day. Or meditate. It’s great to calm yourself and get a good night’s rest.

TIP 10: Forecast:  All good entrepreneurs plan and forecast for any glitches that they might come across. Open your minds to the ‘what-if scenario’ even try the marketing warfare strategy with your team.

TIP 11: Keep learning:  Reading, browsing, brainstorming promotes increase in knowledge, increase in capabilities and be the creative gold mine that you’re looking for!

TIP 12: focus on what makes you happy

Focus on what makes you happy Do the things you love to! They keep you happy and productive!

TIP 13: Express gratitude:  Be grateful for what you have and for how far you’ve come. It will help you become a better person and achieve higher levels.

be grateful for what you have

TIP 14: Reward yourself: For every goal achieved, reward yourself with small indulges, or a movie night out or maybe even a spa!

TIP 15: Alternate between projects:- If you find yourself bogged down on  a particular project , switch to something else (if you have the time). It might require a different skill set but it let’s you work with fresh energy and ideas.

Remember that you will fail a few times before you really make it ,especially if you’re a start up. But, It’s in those moments that you truly learn so take it in your stride and carry on.  Once the hardships are over, the business will blossom under your care and passion!

impossible is nothing

What are your go to tips for being inspired and productive?

Write to us!

-Social Pandora

(Images via: WeSEE)

The idea muscle

StrategyAudit

brainpower

We all know instinctively that with exercise, we get better. Running, jumping, swimming, all that stuff makes us fitter, healthier, but it takes time and effort, and we are all busy.

Busy doing what?  Besides, running is boring, sweaty, and bad for the knees.

We also know that going to school is supposed to teach us stuff that is useable in life, like how to solve a quadratic equation. Last time I did that was 5 minutes before I forgot how to do it, 45 years ago, so perhaps not such a great life skill, for me at least.

However, exercising our brain, our idea muscle if you like seems pretty important however, you think about it.

A friend of mine is stricken by a form of muscular dystrophy, debilitating and dehumanising physically, but rather than becoming despondent and reclusive, she has sought places where she can exercise the only muscle…

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20 + Creative ideas for Social Media Marketing

creativity in social media(Image via WeSEE.com)

 If you’re a small or medium sized enterprise, churning out content everyday can be monotonous and most often, you find that you need to shake things up a bit to get your page noticed.

 

93% of businesses are currently leveraging social media to gain more customers, acquire new businesses deals or to build brand loyalty. So if you need to stand out from the competition and effectively attract customers and other businesses, you need creative social media content. So here are our top tips to get you started!

 

  1. Share your experience:Share your experience

 (Image via @brainwaves-ni.org)

 

While a lot of information can be got over the Internet, you’re more likely to get heard when you share your experience. It could be anything- A problem you solved, an issue you faced, tips etc. It helps to build relationships and find other like minded people to share expert tips with.

2.   Post a Photo and ask your fans what they think it could be- Our Mystery Photo round !
Help create a sense of excitement with your brand.

3.    Caption this- National Geographic on their Facebook channel does this beautifully and it gets high engagement too! Post a photo and ask your fans to caption it or what they think it represents. It’s perfect for increasing engagement and you get an idea what your audience are like.

4.   Share a Video- Videos are the most shared form of content and gets maximum attention in the social media world! So share a video of your own or something that interested you. It’s good to cross promote too !

5.   Where’s Waldo or the picture hunt-  Post a photo and ask your fans to find any of your brand items, raw materials, finished products etc. It’s fun and gets people to participate!

6.   “I spy something with my  little eye”  – Similar to the picture hunt but you can give them specific things to look for in the picture rather than looking for random things in the picture.

7.   Change the Profile picture and Cover photo:  Spice it up with different pictures to keep the page active. Keep coming up with creative images that reflect your brand’s vision.

8.   Share Funny Stuff- Photos of your office fun, videos you stumble upon from the web, funny images etc. Humour always works well on social media and it helps to lighten the posts for the day.

9.   Share 2-3 pictures and ask which of them your fans like best -It garners interesting responses and provides good insights to what your audience likes.

10.                Riddle me this!

 

riddles for creative social media marketing

(Image via Bubbleviews.com)

 Ask a Riddle or ask them to unscramble a word Jumble-Break the monotony of posts with this fun game!

11. Create a teaser campaign: When you want to test a thought that hasn’t quite made it big as yet, create a teaser and keep referring to it in your posts to gather curiosity and to build conversations about the topic or thought. You will know what works , how to change anything or how to make it better.

12.Create a ‘ Behind the Scenes’ video series: Use a smartphone or tablet to record your own ‘behind the scenes’ video to show what you’re working on (outlines, schedules, raw materials and so on). Remember to keep it short and sweet!

13.Share your ideas on a new marketing plan or campaign idea and ask your audience what they think of it. What  better way to find out what they really like?

14.                Did you know’?  Fun fact or Trivia- Each week post a fun fact or trivia, a small way to merge education and entertainment don’t you think?

15.                Share inspirational quotes- Short Inspirational quotes to motivate your fans during the week.

16.                Share Live testimonies: Share the testimonies your clients, fans or friends have of you and your work. Show your fans what you’re like!

17.                Fill in the blanks:

 

I prefer ______________________ to chocolate. A once a week post to build engagement and personalize with your fans.

18.                Provide Expert or Handy tips –

19.Pin it to win it! A contest that works like this. Ask your fans to follow you on Pinterest and repin photos from your board named ‘Brand X’s Pin it to win it Board’ and a #BrandXpinittowinit and get fans to participate from across your social media channels. Choose a winner at the end and offer them a prize.

20.                Offer a Facebook Fan’s only offer

21.                Ask me anything day!- A chance for your fans to ask you questions on that particular day every week. A chance to give them hands on advice, tips, lessons etc

22.                Fact or Myth? Works similar to Did you know? at no 14

23.                Use the ‘Coming Soon’ Message across all your social media channels to let your audience know that something exciting is about to happen!

 

Try these handy tips and get more followers and build relationships with your fans on all your channels!

 

Let us know how it works! What creative ideas do you use on your campaign?

-Social Pandora

 

 

 

 

The Content Marketing Forecast for 2014 that you should know about !

The Content Marketing Forecast for 2014 that you should know about !

 

What you should know for your Business

What you should know for your Business

(Image via submitedge.com)

 Content Marketing has definitely come a long way! Something that began as a niche strategy has quickly grown to become one of the dominant methods of attracting meaningful and good leads. Harnessing the power of words, or images or videos is essential for building long-term success and an online presence.

 

So here’s a gist of what we believe are trends for this year and where it is headed!

content-marketing- has to be Original and valuable

 (Image via siliconangle.com)

 Did you know that 92% of marketers are using content marketing? According to infinigraph.com 2014, is all about going beyond experimenting to full content marketing integration and executions.

 

Instead of arguing about its significance and wondering what strategies to follow and the budgets to go along with it, this will be the year where you will need to have your content marketing strategies organized and in place.

 

58% of B2B and 60% of B2C marketers will increase their content marketing budget over the next 12 months. That being said, companies need to become aware of the importance of content marketing so that CFO’s can make investments in solid content strategies; meaning creating more positions and teams that are dedicated to creating great content. Without a good strategy in place, results won’t be as effective for every aspect of content marketing

 

Online Marketers have seen an explosion of how people are accessing the web via their mobile devices. From when they wake up until their heads hit the pillow at night, people are on their phones. So why shouldn’t marketers take advantage of this trend and offer consistent and effective content that is accessible on not just mobiles but also tablets? – Trend to look out for is Multi-screens

 

Marketing needs to be Integrative – it’s not enough to just simply focus on content marketing or social media marketing but to take a holistic view of online marketing in general. Connecting e-mails, content and social media would do a lot to promote the brand and to build relationships.

 

 

New SEO –Google’s new algorithm Hummingbird, delivers better results based on the way we speak, so you will now need better and greater content. This update means better use of grammar, synonyms and words that deliver results.

 

Content Curation:  As more content is being churned out everyday, 2014 will see a greater need of efforts to organize all the information into relevant and better ways for audiences to absorb them- like Custom Timeline in Twitter to tweet about a specific topic or event or LinkedIn Showcase pages that allows brands to segment content for audiences based on different aspects of their business.

 

Providing value and quality content:  The overall quality of content will grow more than ever this year and as more people consume this content; brands and marketers will step up their game by integrating photos, videos, journalism and innovative story telling into their strategies.

 

So it’s time to get your Business on board and incorporate these into your strategy!

What are your content trends for 2014? What do you think people should include into their content strategy?

 

Let us know!

 

-Social Pandora

 

 

 

 

The Best iOS And Android Apps Of 2013

TechCrunch

Congratulations, Planet Earth! We made it another 365 days without crashing into the sun. Go team!

It’s the end of the year, and that means three things: booze, ridiculous sunglasses with numbers on them, and lists. Lots and lots of lists. You’ve seen our list of best/worst gadgets of the year. Up next? The Best Mobile Apps Of 2013.

Now, to be clear: there’s not a lot of science here. If we were going by the raw numbers, some Angry Birds spin-off would be the top app every year for the rest of eternity. Instead, these are the favorites picked by a bunch of geeks who write about this stuff all day, every day. We’ve seen the good, the bad, and the terrible — and after some heated debate, these apps emerged as the year’s champs.

We tried to stick with apps that launched in 2013, or, in…

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Google To Close Bump And Flock, Its Recently Acquired File Sharing Apps

TechCrunch

Bump and Flock, the file sharing apps Google acquired last fall, will be shut down by the end of this month. Both apps will stop working and be removed from Google Play and the App Store on January 31, Bump confirmed on its blog today.

Google bought Bump Technologies, which make both apps, back in September, and Android Police reports that work on the app appeared to stop shortly after the acquisition.

Bump, which let users tap phones together to share contacts and other files, raised nearly $20 million and enjoyed high download rates, but failed to monetize successfully as other easy, mobile-friendly ways to share information were developed, most notably Apple’s AirDrop for iOS 7. Flock is a collaborative photo-sharing app Bump Technologies released in 2012.

As TechCrunch’s Josh Constine wrote in September, the sale wasn’t an acquihire, but Google might plan to turn Flock into part…

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