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Small Business Success: Creativity VS Metrics

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Post Small Business Success: Creativity VS Metrics   Sat Aug 13, 2011 12:54 pm

What is the key to launching a successful small business? The type that not only has the potential to provide you a comfortable lifestyle but one that can explode into a major, dynamic, game changing enterprise and deliver real wealth and financial freedom?

Balancing creativity and solid business sense.

If you are like many other budding entrepreneurs out there you probably see business ideas and opportunities at every turn, everyday. From walking to your car to grabbing your coffee and realizing there has to be a more efficient way to get served to seeing missed profit centers at the restaurant you visit at lunch time to shaking your head at horrible TV commercials when you get home there are business possibilities everywhere, whether it is improving on a core product or service, enhancing the customer experience or just marketing something a lot better. These are where many of our ideas for new ventures come from and have certainly spawned many incredibly profitable organizations.

Though what if you challenged yourself to come up with something completely original. Why not launch a venture providing something that is not being done at all right now? What if you tore out every part of your business plan that leaned on an idea that was already in use? Then you could absolutely come up with something completely revolutionary. Something that could really change the game.

Contemplate the things you are most passionate about and brainstorm ideas for monetizing the things that inspire you in a way no one else is doing.

Now comes the hard part. The reality check. Unique and creative business ideas are great and are what fuels change and growth. However, there is a time when you do need to listen up to outside advice if you really want to enjoy your success.

Ultimately the purpose of starting and building a business is to generate money. Doing what you love is important, but unless you already have far more wealth than you could ever want, then you do need to look at your venture as an investment and a real business that needs to meet payroll.

Sometimes this means looking at the numbers and making tough decisions. Or at least making decisions based on the finances and not just on what frills you think make your business look pretty. A great example of this is real estate investing. Real estate has long been one of America's favorite investments. Unfortunately when many start out they begin looking at fancy houses that they think they might actually like to live in, then never want to sell or they renovate properties far beyond the point where they will see a return and actually add value. Smart investors know that they need to look at the numbers first and if the numbers work then it makes sense.

When it comes to your own business, especially in terms of marketing and branding you will definitely be wise to get some outside input on what really works and converts customers instead of just what looks nice. For example, you can commission elaborate websites and spend thousands on TV ads but if you could achieve better results and realize higher profits with a simple two line email campaign and a Facebook page then it is clear which makes more sense.

This is where market research and taking advantage of coaching can really make all the difference between a fantasy business idea that ends up burning a hole in your pocket and collecting dust and a vibrant venture that can really deliver the independent executive lifestyle you are seeking.
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