I wear so many hats as an entrepreneur and that’s because there are so many things I can do. That being said, I am an author, a freelance writing coach, content creator, marketer & strategist. I am also an editor, a book project consultant and a public speaker. I have worked with clients in Nigeria and in other countries like Canada, Denmark, Wales, US, Poland and Germany, I have also done a lot of training both free and paid and recorded successes in the lives of my students who have built a life of influence and income via the training they had with me. Also, I am also the founder of the Facebook community From Hobby To Career Africa. In this article, I share a bit of my journey as an entrepreneur and some tips to help you start a successful entrepreneurial journey in this economy.
In 2018, I started my brand (The Midas Touch Literary Services) and from that time till now, my business keeps growing and I keep getting opportunities because of the content I put out. In December 2018, I got nominated for the African Writer’s Award in the flash fiction category. The following year, by virtue of my content, I had my work featured in both national and international magazines and blogs. So far this year, I have been featured on TV a couple of times and my articles have been featured in three magazines and the most amazing one is I was made the cover girl of the first edition of another magazine.
I just shared all these things with you not because I want to impress you but because I want to impress upon you that it is not too late to be an entrepreneur, which is why I will share certain tips and strategies that will help you succeed. Before then, let us get some definitions straight.
Who is an entrepreneur?
An entrepreneur is a person who starts a business and is willing to risk a loss to make money or one who organizes, manages, and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise. So, if this definition describes you or what you plan to do, then you are an entrepreneur. Now, it is no news that with the whole Covid-19 pandemic there is an economic downturn as companies are downsizing their staff number, people have lost their jobs and some businesses are not doing as well as they used to. With all these negative things that are happening in our continent, you may wonder what the way out is. Our continent is not like developed continents whose governments care for her citizens and try to relieve their burdens. We are pretty much left on our own to figure out how our lives will go, and this is where entrepreneurship comes to save the day.
You may also ask why I would talk about entrepreneurship when I just said some businesses are not doing as well as they used to. It is at this point I will define an entrepreneur as someone who sees a need or problem in society and uses innovative ways either through products or services to fill that need or provide the solution to that problem. This Covid-19 pandemic has caused lots of businesses to suffer, but some other businesses have done even better during this downtime.
So, how does one become an entrepreneur in this current African economy? Below are some things you must do to make sure you start and run a successful business.
- Find out the particular problem you want to solve, and if people will pay for it.
- Research your target market’s demographics thoroughly: who they are, who they buy from, what they say about your competitors, how old they are, what their income level and buying habit is.
- Do a SWOT analysis on yourself and business. SWOT stands for Strength, Weakness, Opportunity, and Threats. Using myself as an example, one of my strengths is teaching people complex things in the most simple way and this made me start my YouTube channel where I teach a lot of HOW TO videos on tech, apps and software. You can find my videos by clicking on this link
- Get advisors and mentors: preferably people who have walked in the same path you want to tread.
- Have a business plan and proposals just in case you will need to apply for funding
- Have a good grasp on the numbers that tell you how your business is doing and what you can expect. These include your start-up costs, sales, projected profits, cash flow, and much more, depending on your business and how you define success.
- Have a passion for what you do because this is what will keep you going when you don’t feel like it.
- When you want to hire staff, get people who are skilled and very passionate about your business just as you are. You must also lead by example and treat your staff well.
- Have great customer service, learn how to close sales, follow-up clients and have integrity as your watchword.
- An important aspect you cannot overlook is, your business must have an online presence (website and social media platforms) and understand both content marketing and digital marketing so you can reach more customers. In the past, I have trained business owners on how to use content marketing to their advantage. Also, I have a free book on content marketing which you can get by clicking on this link
As I stated before, to be a successful entrepreneur in these present times, you must have the solution to the problem people have. Once you can solve a problem, be rest assured that you can get people’s money. Look at brands like Mark Zukerberg, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, etc. they all have the solution to a problem the world is facing, and this is why they are wealthy.