Double flipping great business tips

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Double flipping great business tips

Double flipping great business tips

Setting up your own business takes courage, self belief, and money, however being your own boss and working from home gives you the ultimate flexibility – and is the perfect way to manage the family versus work conundrum.

Since I set up my business, double-flip.com, the learning curve has been steep.  Here’s some of what I have learnt:

The light bulb moment.

This may sound obvious, but if you are going to succeed you need to have a really good idea.  Extensive research into the concept is essential. Is there actually a market for your idea? Is any one else doing any thing similar?  Friends and family are useful sounding boards but they are usually positive and supportive, you need to test your idea with strangers to get a real sense of what people think.

Listen to your customers.

Get in front of your customers as soon as possible, as the feedback you receive, in terms of what people buy, as well as what people say, will be invaluable in shaping the way you go forward.  Offering your service to friends of friends for a cut rate, or taking a stall at a local event are both good low cost ways of getting in front of people.

Shout from the roof tops.

Once you are convinced that your business is viable you then have to sell it.  Put aside shyness and modesty, people are not going to find you if they don’t know you are there. You may have a brilliant idea and then create a beautiful website, but sitting back and waiting for the phone to ring is not going to work. Marketing will take up a huge amount of your time, especially at the beginning.

Passion and enthusiasm. 

You need this in spades. If you are not passionate about your idea, no one else will be.  Every one you speak to is a potential marketer, they will pass on your enthusiasm.  Personal recommendations via word of mouth are very valuable.

Stay motivated.

This is sometimes hard, and the mountain to climb can seem overwhelming.  Set yourself realistic targets and time scales, I find this makes the work seem more manageable. Don’t forget to look back, see what you have achieved, and give yourself a pat on back.

Take Advice.

Use every contact you have and follow up every one you are given. You never know where or what a conversation could lead to. Consider all the advice you are given, but you don’t have to take it! Use your gut instinct, you are probably right. It is YOU who lives with the consequences of what you do, you don’t have to do things to please other people.

You may not be the best person for every job.

If you can afford it, consider getting expert help with certain jobs, for example: branding or PR.  The investment in a professional job may pay huge rewards in the long run.

Don’t over do it.

Make sure you only offer or produce what you can manage.  Keep it simple and do it well.  Over stretching yourself financially, physically or mentally is self defeating and potentially disastrous. You may be a super woman, but every one has their limits!

The Balance. 

Remember why you are doing this.  Children can encroach on work time and visa versa, and this can be frustrating for every one.  Kids get grumpy when they don’t have your full attention, and you won’t be able to concentrate properly anyway. Clearly define your work and family time and give each your full attention.  Being able to pop a wash on during the day is useful, but don’t let house work encroach on your work time either. Compartmentalise.

Bloody hard work.

There is no substitute for this. The old adage 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration absolutely correct. ‘Overnight success’ if not a myth, is very rare. Do research into people you admire, you will find that in every walk of life, successful people have ‘made their own luck’ and worked long and hard to do so.  You will find that working for your self you will work harder than you have ever done, but it will be on your terms, and in your time, and the sense of achievement is brilliant.

 

Thanks for Lucy McDowel, director of double-flip, whose range of clothes, toys and accessories is all reversible or double sided.   www.double-flip.com  www.facebook.com/Doubleflip  twitter @doubleflipit

 

 

Latest news from Double-Flip:

Double flip is a family affair, and with our busiest season approaching we have even roped in Granny and Grandad to help.  Our best selling Fun and Games Mat used to be made on the kitchen table, but with daily orders and a growing number of stockists we have now found a family run manufacturer, with a similar ethos to us, to make them up for us.

doubleflipfun-and-games-mat-600

 

 

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