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How to Have a Personal Life as an Entrepreneur

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How to Have a Personal Life as an Entrepreneur

Balancing your professional and personal life is difficult even for people who work a set number of hours in their jobs. It becomes even more difficult when you do not have set hours, and you are not exactly answerable to anyone, but yourself.

Being an entrepreneur has an added thought process of working continuously. If you aren’t working, you start feeling guilty and feel as if you aren’t doing enough. The responsibilities and obligations you feel overfills your plate. True, being an entrepreneur means putting more time towards your goal, sacrificing some personal time, but knowing how much to sacrifice is very important.

Creating balance in your life is something that you need to work towards. A balance makes you feel more fulfilled and also helps meet all the obligations. By having no personal life, and trying to work 24×7, you are doing more harm than good.

Being your own boss means that you get to decide your own schedule. You have to be disciplined enough to take some time out for yourself. Use this time to meet people, do things you love, learn things you have wanted to, spend time with your family. The time you take out for yourself helps you to recharge your mind, which in turn will help you to work better towards your goal.

As an entrepreneur, you already know the importance of planning and organization. You have to be thorough to get the most out of your day. This is a challenge if you work from home. Because there is no separation between your workspace and your living space, it is easy for one to bleed into another, and mostly it will be the work taking over everything.

How to Have a Personal Life as an Entrepreneur

“The question I ask myself almost every day is, ‘Am I doing the most important thing I could be doing?’”


– Mark Zuckerberg

The first step is to respect the work and private life for yourself. When you yourself value your time, others will have to follow. If you live alone, then distractions are limited and easy to deal with, but when you live with family, it becomes complicated. Because you are home, they might think you are available for whatever reason.

You have to set clear rules and a timeline when no one is allowed to disturb you or ask you to do something. This also gives you a chance to feel like you actually have separate work and personal lives. When you set a time when your family cannot disturb you, they themselves will make sure that you get off work when that time is over.

When a cycle sets in, keep family out during work will make the family bring you in during your allotted personal time. When you do not do this and entertain everyone all the time, it is difficult for anyone to know when work stops and when personal time starts.

Now that you know how to keep yourself busy in an effective manner, you need to work on finding the time you are most productive. You have the flexibility to work according to yourself, use that to your advantage.

I know people who work the best at nights or early mornings, but they don’t have the flexibility to do that because they work a job where they have to fill in the hours that the company demands. You, on the other hand, don’t. So, work your schedule around your personal life to not feel pressured to fit in everything at the same time.

How to Have a Personal Life as an Entrepreneur

If you have a spouse who has a job, then you can sync your time to them so that your free time syncs in as well. If you have children and you know they will be home in the afternoons, then you can work all morning to spend time with them later.

It really is all about finding out what works best for you. You also have to take care of the business side of things as well, of course. If your work requires you to communicate with clients and the timeline you want to work at doesn’t match, then set a few hours aside to later talk to your clients. You do not have to do all the work all at once, find the rhythm that makes the most sense to your situation.

When you are working on a timeline that is different from others, you might have to say ‘no’ more frequently, don’t be afraid of it. It just means you value your time enough to say no.

“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”


– Albert Schweitzer

When you work in an office, you get a change of scene when you come home. Change in the environment helps to deal with lows if there are any. Highs and lows are part of life and also business. With a job, you can leave it at the door when you enter your home. What do you do when your home is your office?

Like it is advised to leave your work at the door, you have to do the same. Leave your work on your laptop as soon as you shut it. You stopped working, that means you need to leave all the work there. I know, it is easier said than done. But, you need to remember that low points don’t last forever like high points don’t, so, instead of stressing, take some time out. Spend this time with people who matter or doing what you love so that your brain gets a break from thinking about business and has a chance to recharge itself.

“You have to see failure as the beginning and the middle, but never entertain it as an end.”


-Jessica Herrin

Hitting lows means maybe you can’t afford to take time out for yourself. But, here’s where you can do what I do at times like these. When things get too difficult, try merging your breaks and family time. I usually follow the Pomodoro technique, where you work in 25-minute blocks and take breaks, but if things get too hectic or there are some crises, what I do is I reschedule my timeline.

How to Have a Personal Life as an Entrepreneur

I take a longer break and incorporate a small activity with my family. Let’s say I take 2 hours off when things get too heavy, and my mind desperately needs a break, and watch a movie with my family at that time. This gives me a break, lets me spend time with my family, and also lets me loosen up a bit. I can then get back to work with my mind a little more freed up than it was before.

This works because it lets your brain think that you aren’t taking a break, you are still doing something valuable. You are spending time with your family, which we can otherwise neglect when work gets heavy. When there’s a lot to do, taking breaks can make you guilty, and your mind will keep going back to what you could do in the time you are taking off, may it be just 5-minutes.

Following my method, tricks your mind into not feeling guilty about taking the much-needed break and also helps you pay attention to the people who matter. It is like killing two birds with a stone.

Final Takeaway

You will come across a lot of tips to balance your life online. But remember to not follow everything you read. Something that works for someone else might not work for you, and something that works for you might make no sense to someone else.

In the beginning, I made the mistake of following every advice I came across. I quickly realized that every person is different, every business is different. Our priorities are different, and what we value in life is totally different from someone from even our closest circle.

So, when we talk about having balance in life, it doesn’t always mean family and work, it can also mean you and work. Find out what balance means to you, and work on achieving it.

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”


-Mark Twain

Entrepreneurs

Why Diversity is Key in Business Marketing

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Diversity in business

Diversity and inclusion have become essential to businesses as they allow a mix of people from different backgrounds and cultures to provide the diversity of thought required in marketing. However, many businesses do not place enough emphasis on ensuring that they have a balanced, diverse and inclusive team, especially in their marketing departments. This needs to change, and this article will look at reasons why businesses should focus on diversity and inclusion and why they are both essential for businesses.

Improved Creativity and Innovation

Having a marketing team filled with people from different backgrounds and who have different experiences, skills and knowledge leads to an increase in creativity and innovation. This is because each member of the team has different, unique ideas that can greatly benefit the organization as a whole. Additionally, employees feel more comfortable sharing their ideas in a diverse environment.

It Protects the Business

In the past, businesses have gone viral for the wrong reasons, mainly because they did not understand how their messaging would come across. This negative publicity impacted the businesses that went viral for the wrong reasons, and it takes time for businesses to recover their image and marketing positioning once something like this happens. All of this negativity would have been avoided if different diverse voices had been listened to, and this is another reason why businesses should have a diverse marketing team.

Understanding Diverse Demographics

Having a diverse and inclusive team helps businesses understand diverse demographics better. This is because businesses can market their products and services as well as themselves better once they have people on their marketing teams who understand the demographics that the business is targeting.

The diversity of thought, opinions, and representation helps a business have different perspectives that they can incorporate into their marketing messages and that shape how the business and brand present themselves. Diversity Equity and Inclusion drive the decision-making process because businesses can use the members of their marketing teams to better understand different demographics and their differences.

Filtering Biased Data

Marketing teams have lots of artificial intelligence and machine learning tools at their disposal. These tools help businesses build campaigns, tailor their message, understand their customers better, and a lot more. However, the results you get out of these tools largely depend on the type of data you feed them.

A diverse marketing team can help the business filter data to remove biased data. If the marketing team reflects your customer base, they are in a great position to point out which data is correct and which would lead to unwanted results. A business should not be making decisions using insights gleaned from data that was flawed in the first place.

Businesses that understand the need for inclusion and diversity in their marketing teams do a lot better than those that do not. Their marketing campaigns do a lot better with their customers, they avoid negative publicity due to insensitive messaging, and they only make decisions based on the right data.

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How to Use User-Generated Content

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How to Use User-Generated Content

For a business to remain relevant on the internet, especially if you are a small business, it must constantly create content. And, just any content won’t do. The content you create must resonate with the followers and engage them thoroughly. 

This can be pretty tough to pull off consistently all by yourself. I speak from experience. No matter how good you are with content, no matter how much knowledge you possess about your niche, and no matter how driven you are – constantly coming up with ideas can be draining. Being consistent requires discipline along with creativity, and sometimes, creativity just wants to stay stagnant.

However, you can solve this problem by using social media followers to create content for you. Social media is full of precious information for businesses. It has become easy to directly connect with the customers and use data to make data-driven decisions. Let’s use what is available and look at eight simple ways how we can use the help of users to generate relevant content.

Hashtag

How to Use User-Generated Content

An easy way to make users create content for you is by using hashtags. For this, you need to first create a branded hashtag that gives off a strong vibe about your business. 

So, for a gaming company, hashtags like #LetsPlay, #PickUpTheGamepad, or something similar will make sense. Plus, if you can ensure that the hashtag is related to some kind of cause, then all the better. 

For example, a new government regulation might result in restricting the gaming industry. So, creating hashtags revolving around this topic will give you a better chance at attracting users and ensuring that lots of quality content is created.

User Photos

How to Use User-Generated Content

Text content alone will not help you widen your reach on social media. You will need images, as well. And these, too, can be sourced from your followers. Ask them to send in photos of them using your product or service. 

You can then select a few that look good and have a chance of being shared the most on social media to feature on your profile page. Ideally, photos should depict them enjoying or benefiting from the product. 

So, if you provide online gaming service, then photos showing people smiling while gaming is far more preferable than people just holding a gamepad in their hands and taking a selfie.

Post Comments

How to Use User-Generated Content

When you post content on your social media profile, you will most likely generate a massive amount of comments from followers. And while most of these comments will often be one-liners with no substantial content, there will be a few comments that can be deeply impactful or thought-provoking. 

So, when you see such comments, take a screenshot and post it on your social media page. You can also contact the user and ask them whether they wish to be tagged.

For example, you may post an article on how best to use your brand of nail polish. And among the many comments, the post will attract, you might come across one user who has narrated a story about how using the nail polish has helped her feel more attractive. These are the type of comments that you should screenshot and share.

Polls

How to Use User-Generated Content

You can also conduct a poll and use it to create excellent content. The best way to implement this is to conduct a poll wherein the participants are asked about your product or brand, and the results of which can be turned into an infographic. 

For example, if you sell internet security software, then the poll can focus on questions like how many people feel that their computer has become safer after installing the software; how many think that your security software is better than the rivals; how many feel that the pricing is okay, and so on. 

Once the poll ends, you can tabulate the results and get a good graphic designer to convert the statistics into an attractive infographic that has the potential to go viral.  

Questions

How to Use User-Generated Content

Asking your followers some questions about the product or service is also a good way to create user-generated content. The question must focus on evoking a response that highlights how good your offering is. 

So, a question like ‘How much weight have you lost by using our product’ should be used as compared to ‘Do you think diet is essential for weight-loss?’ 

The former will mostly evoke an answer that will reflect the quality of your product while the latter will only lead to a more generalized answer. You can then select the best answers and post them on your profile.

Events

How to Use User-Generated Content

If your business is conducting an event that has the potential to attract the attention of the general public, then that, too, is an opportunity to generate user-created content. You can spread the news that a special event is being conducted, and invite people to attend. 

When they do come to the place, encourage them to share their experience of it online. They may publish a text post about how the event was or may even live stream their experience on Facebook. Whatever way they choose, it will benefit you by getting your business more exposure.

Testimonials

How to Use User-Generated Content

Another excellent way to generate top-notch content is by inviting testimonials from users. Just ask customers to provide their experience with your product or service detailing how using it has changed their life for the better. 

So, if your business manufactures shampoo, you can ask followers to send in their experience of how the shampoo helped them get rid of dandruff and made their hair lustrous and healthy. 

The best thing about this is that you will easily get so many responses since many people will jump at the opportunity to see their story featured by a business.

Influencer Marketing

How to Use User-Generated Content

Maybe you don’t have sufficient social media clout to create user-generated content successfully. So, what do you do? The best alternative for you is to use influencer marketing

Contact an influencer in your niche and use them as a tool to create content from the public. As a starting point, you can ask the influencer to use the hashtags discussed above so that your brand name gets sufficient exposure. You can then move on to using the influencer for collecting testimonials, conducting polls, asking questions, and so on. 

However, do make sure that the influencer you associate with has a good reputation so that your business will be seen in a more positive light by the people.

Final Thoughts

How to Use User-Generated Content

Building a brand presence on social media can be a great deal because it has the potential to make more sales than direct marketing. Social media helps you make customers feel a connection and trust your business. They are more likely to convert into actual customers when they see how others have benefited and how well you understand your customers and care for them.

Use a combination of all the ways that I have talked about. Reaching people and then showing them how helpful your product or service can be to them has never been this easy. If you play your cards right, you might not even have to spend much on elaborate marketing.

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Tools to Find and Work With Influencers to Market Your Business

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Tools to Find and Work With Influencers to Market Your Business

For any business to grow, marketing its products and services to the right audience is necessary. One marketing channel that many businesses seem to avoid due to ignorance is influencer marketing

“Influencer marketing is the modern word of mouth & is eating the lunch of traditional digital media in many ways.”

-Kinser

In simple words, with influencer marketing, you will be using popular people with a large following on social media and blogosphere to promote your product. The outcome can be tremendously positive. Today I will help you explore how you can find influencers in your business niche and how to negotiate with them.

Finding Influencers

“Influence marketing is an art and science. The art is the crafting and creating of content that adds value to people’s lives, personally or for their business. The science is the tactics and tools of building tribes and followers on the big social networks”

-Jeff Bullas

The first step for using influencer marketing is finding the top influencers in your business niche. For this, you can use any of the following tools –

Buzzsumo

This is a freemium application in that you can use certain features for free but will have to pay to use its full set of features. Even with its free mode, Buzzsumo is extremely useful for marketers to identify and categorize influencers into various types, like bloggers, reviewers, trainers, beauty experts, and so on.

This will later allow you to use them appropriately for business promotion activities. In addition, Buzzzsumo is also a great tool to know what types of content is trending for a particular day or week.  

Tweetdeck

If you wish to focus largely on twitter influencers, then Tweetdeck is the perfect tool for the job. While you can certainly use this tool to identify influencers that have a large number of followers, its true usefulness lies in the fact that you can also see how many Twitter lists these influencers are on. 

This will allow you to accurately gauge the popularity and impact of the influencer enabling you to avoid those who have the least impact and hire influencers with the biggest reach.

Kred

This is another great tool that will help you judge the quality of an influencer. The tool will use various metrics like replies, follows, mentions, etc. of the influencer to see how impactful they are. Finally, Kred will provide a rating based on the criteria that will make it much easier for you to find top quality influencers. If you are just starting out with influencer marketing, then Kred is the tool for you.

Group High

If you do not wish to waste time on research and finding influencers, then you should try the influencer marketing software – Group High. They maintain a centralized data of some of the biggest influencers on the internet.  Plus, the influencers are categorized based on different niches like sports, travel, beauty, tech, and so on. This will make influencer marketing an extremely simple process.

Working With Influencers

Once you have found the important influencers in your niche, you can start approaching and negotiating with them. For this, the following tips will be useful:

Reviews

Tools to Find and Work With Influencers to Market Your Business

The first option is to ask the influencer to review your offering. You can allow them to use the product or service for a few days and ask them to post their honest reviews about it on their social media page. Customers always conduct in-depth research about a product they are interested in.

“95% of people trust recommendations from others over branded content, even if they don’t know them personally.”

-Josh Hager

As such, if they come across a review from an influencer they are following, then an extremely positive review may push them to choose your product. Now, it is also possible that the reviewer may not like your product. As such, you can ask them not to post a bad review but do not ask them to post a false review. It is unethical and will eventually turn against you.

Sponsored Post

If you don’t want influencers to review your product, you can negotiate with them to publish a sponsored post. Though a sponsored post might seem like a review, there is a big difference. In a review, the influencer is free to say negative things about your product. But, in a sponsored post, you will be paying them to publish a post about your brand.

“People influence people. Nothing influences people more than a recommendation from a trusted friend. A trusted referral influences people more than the best broadcast message. A trusted referral is the Holy Grail of advertising.”

-Mark Zuckerberg

This will ensure that there is nothing excessively negative published about your product or service. However, you have to understand that some bloggers will likely state in the post that it is a ‘sponsored post’ if they are a strict follower of the FTC guidelines. But, do not let it stop you because the exposure gained through a post by an influencer marketer is well worth the money spent.

Giveaway

Tools to Find and Work With Influencers to Market Your Business

Another way to use an influencer is through giveaways. This can be a great strategy since a giveaway allows the influencer to hold a contest for their followers with your product or service as the prize. As a result, they are very likely to agree to such arrangements.

Plus, they will also be neutral when talking about the giveaway and only mention its benefits. So, as far as you are concerned, a giveaway is the perfect tactic to get a positive mention of your product from an influencer to their numerous followers. This is essentially a win-win for both parties.

Make sure to work with the influencer to come up with a great contest for the giveaway. It should be exciting for all participants. And remember, the objective of the giveaway is to ensure that many people participate in it. So, don’t complicate the contest. Keep it simple and you are guaranteed to see a fantastic response and exposure.

Guest Posts

Many influencers will be contributors to big media outlets that will have a reach to millions of readers. And this is an opportunity you must fully explore. In addition to posting favorable posts on social media and personal blogs, you can ask the influencers whether they are willing to publish a post about your product or service on the website in which they are a contributor. Or you can ask them to let you write a guest post on their blog.

Now, do not have any expectations of how much exposure you will receive in such posts. After all, they are publishing to a third party website and will usually have to contribute a useful piece of content. The best they can possibly do is mention your product or service briefly. But, considering the exposure the article will provide your brand, this is a good marketing strategy that you must definitely try out.

Final Thoughts

In today’s times, social media is a life-changing tool for small businesses. The plethora of platforms available at our disposal to use – to benefit us and our businesses in ways that didn’t seem possible before – offers a huge opportunity to engage with a community of prospects at a fraction of the cost. 

“Influencer marketing is something to pay attention to. We’re used to influencers being people like the Kardashians, but we all have our Kardashians at our events. These people are called micro-influencers and they can have a large impact when used strategically.”

-Alex Plaxen

Influencer marketing lets you tap in on a community of people who can be potential customers. The right influencer can allow you to gain many prospects. It is important to learn what works for the current times, and influencer marketing doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon so you might as well use the opportunity to the fullest.

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