I had the best conversation with a entrepreneur friend, who is also an amazing celebrity wardrobe stylist. He mentioned how he has been traveling more for business and that the “money” isn’t in Atlanta anymore. I had to disagree with him… to an extent. He mentioned how he had spoken to a well known celebrity hair stylist and he too has been traveling more to seek business due to the lack of consistency in the city. Honestly, times are tough. I won’t go into a super long statistical history of how high the employment rate is. I won’t go into a super long blog post about how life as an entrepreneur is tougher than ever. What I will say is you have to think smarter and work harder to succeed past this economical hump.
So the phone conversation started simple enough then turned to business. We both agreed more and more of our associates are traveling out of the state for business. In these times, it’s almost imperative to do so. If you own a business, the best thing you can do is network on a national level. I bring almost everything back to social media. This great article from Inc.com explains how social websites and social networking can truly benefit your business. “How to Use Social Networking Sites to Drive Business“ When you get the moment, take a look at it.
If you’ve owned your own business for 10 years, in the same city, in most cases you’ve worked with the who’s who of your city. If you travel to another city, the who’s who will be eager to work with someone different with a fresh approach to business. Think about it. Atlanta is a large metro city but for those of us who live here, it’s quite small. Thanks to six degrees of separation,you know someone that knows someone that has worked with you. Through the use of social media you are even more connected to potential clients, but this time in other states.
A successful business weathers the storm. My suggestions for entrepreneurs is to revamp and refresh your business concept and vision every other season. The following suggestions for weathering the economic storm can be applied to any business.
- If you’re a retail store consider offering your products and services online so that it reaches outside of your state.
- If you’re an event planner, wedding planner, personal stylist, natural hair stylist or similar. Create a series of seminars, video tape and upload your videos to YouTube and/or your blog. Begin to attend conferences and seminars in other cities and create a Tweet-Up/Meet-up to increase your national network!
- If you are a personal/private chef, a caterer, a food writer, blogger, photographer or similar. Begin to travel to various cities to attend events and network. The Taste of series are in each major city. Attend Taste of Dallas or the Food and Wine Festivals to network and seek out contract work in those areas. Think outside the box! Even if you’re not getting married, someone always is. Consider attending Bridal shows in nearby cities to offer your services.
- If you’re a photographer… travel, travel, travel! Consider creating a table top book of your body of work.