Many home-based or other small business/licensee opportunity, franchise or distributorship shoppers and prospective business owners may not realize it, but they are “reluctant entrepreneurs.” They know what they want and where they want to go, but they are not willing or able to simply drop their day job overnight and start again. There’s just too much at stake for them to give up a steady paycheck. So they pursue their ideal job part-time until the time is right and they begin to feel more confident that they actually can turn their dreams into a reality.
That’s all according to a recent book by New York Times best-selling author Michael Masterson. Appropriately called The Reluctant Entrepreneur, it’s an inspirational and informative read for anyone who is trying to make the transition from working for someone else to buying and/or building a business of their very own.
“This is a book about entrepreneurship—a collection of strategies that will help you start and grow your own successful business,” Masterson writes. “But it is written specifically for people who are nervous about doing it. Maybe even a little afraid.”
If you are a “reluctant entrepreneur,” this book is for and about you.
Although from simply a storytelling perspective The Reluctant Entrepreneur is a great read for anyone who aspires to own a business, Masterson’s book also offers substantial and more concrete guidance in a number of key areas, starting with how you can build your business on a solid foundation. On this topic, he offers six strategic choices that you as a prospective business owner must make early on as you decide which business is right for you, and here they are:
1. Pick an Industry You Know—Although new and exciting is great, there’s something to be said for what you can achieve when you’re working in the realm of the familiar, even it’s only vaguely.
2. Pick the Right Product to Sell—According to Masterson, there is “absolutely no need to try to invent something new. In fact, that is a very bad idea.” He adds, “What you want to do is start with a product that is already working for other marketers.”
3. Pick a Way to Add Value to Your Product—While what you are selling must be based on something already being sold by others, Masterson writes, it’s your job to make it better in some concrete and measurable way.
4. Pick the Right Way to Market Your Product—Good product ideas are one thing, but good, solid marketing, or a lack thereof, can make or break you.
5. Pick the Right Offer—Only the right offer will yield profitable sales to just the right target audience, who then must be converted from new customers to repeat buyers over time.
6. Pick the Right Way to Get Your Marketing Copy Written—Far too many entrepreneurs “drop the ball” here, according to Masterson. They think they are qualified to write their own marketing copy. Yet copywriting, he says, is as much about the art of persuasion as it is being simply able to write. Know your limitations. Meantime, hire out.
“Reluctant entrepreneurs” who are interested in reading Masterson’s book can find it more than likely at their local library or certainly online at such retailers as Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.