As a former freelancer I would have been considered a small business owner at one point. I was managing all aspects of the business which operated under my name. There were definitely some areas that I neglected early on and the main one was marketing or “getting myself out there”. Producing the work itself was second nature but marketing my business was far out of my comfort zone. Some of the questions I asked myself when just starting out “what are others doing?”, “how do I find clients?” and when I actually got into the swing of things “am I doing this right?”.
Recently, some of my great co-workers produced a report based on research into small business owners. I was surprised to see that a lot of the concerns and challenges I faced as a freelancer also had a big impact on small business owners as a whole across a broad variety of business types.
Small business owners universally recognized the value and importance of marketing their business, and most expressed guilt for both not knowing or doing more with it. Online marketing was seen as particularly overwhelming
Small business owners talked about the importance of obtaining new customers but were somewhat fuzzy on how they did so.
I can totally relate to these, I knew the importance of marketing, I knew what needed to be done, heck I even spent a bunch of time in forums studying online marketing but when it came down it, I was never too certain if I was doing it right, if it was working or even if my time is best spent doing it. After struggling with this for best part of a year, I eventually found success in an online freelancing platform which took care of marketing for me and it was a big relief. I felt like I was in good hands. Finding this platform allowed me to put my focus back on the work itself.
So I ask myself these questions:
- How can we make products that give small business owners the same relief?
- How can we inspire trust so that small business owners feel a sense of being “in good hands”?