What They Are, Why They Matter and How to Best Build One

Fictional representations of customers can help you get a deeper understanding of who’s purchasing your products. April 3, 2020 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. If you’ve spent time around any marketers, you might have heard the phrase buyer persona thrown around, but having a thorough understanding of what a buyer persona is and how to build one is one of the most important aspects of building a successful brand, period. So what do people mean when they talk about buyer personas? Personas Are Characters Best-selling authors have nothing on marketers when it comes to creating characters. Buyer personas are fictional people created to represent certain groups of customers that allow companies to get a deeper understanding of the people buying their products. They’re commonly used in marketing departments, but they help the entire company. As Raphi Mahgereft, founder and CEO of jewelry retailer Allurez, recently explained via email, […]

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When It Comes to Work-Life Balance, Do Boomers Have It Better?

There’s something to be said for having some money saved up while being able to telecommute. April 1, 2020 5 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Work-life balance is often an accurate barometer for both physical and emotional health. Gone are the punchcard days of the first half of the 20th century and the strict 9-to-5 office regimen of the early baby boomer generation.  The internet has guided the transition to a heavier emphasis on the “life” aspect of work-life balance. Internet self-service products like Zoom have replaced in-person meetings, which are surprisingly inefficient. Communication apps like Slack have made person-to-person and group chats trivial. And project-management tools such as Trello or Asana manage workflows digitally and effectively.  Naturally, with all their distinct preferences and technological savvy, millennials and Gen Z would appear to be on the receiving end of the early transition to improved work-life balance, right?  Not quite.  […]

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4 Secrets to Becoming an (Even Higher) Achiever

Updating some habits we take for granted can get us to our goals that much quicker. March 28, 2020 5 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. We all strive to be prolific, sharp and creative high achievers. And each of us has that capacity, so long as we’re maintaining habits that ensure we reach peak potential.  So if you’ve been feeling a bit “blah” lately or realize something needs to shift to help you power through a busy Q2, try making these minor adjustments to your daily routine, and note the positive changes that occur. The sooner you can get started on these habits, the better.  1. Eliminate your phone and other distractions during work With so much outer stimuli, we have been programmed to believe that we can multitask. We think that checking our phone to reply to a text then returning to the email we were writing is helping us get […]

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4 Strategies for Better Email Marketing

Proven strategies to get your ecommerce brand on track. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. While there is no denying that email marketing has incredible potential for ecommerce brands, many struggle to generate the sales results they’d like to see. Research from Adestra reveals that 73 percent of millennials list email as their preferred method of getting contacted by a business. A study from Campaign Monitor found that more than 50 percent of American adults check their email upwards of 10 times each day. Needless to say, there are a lot of opportunities for reaching customers, but you’ll only accrue email opens and conversions if you use a multi-faceted strategy like the one outlined below to help your messages stand out. 1. Use double-open emails to extend your reach Worried because the email highlighting your newest product didn’t have a very high open rate? The work that went into crafting that email […]

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3 Ways Entrepreneurs Can Maintain Balance

What we can learn from the collected insights of CrowdOptic CEO and serial entrepreneur Jon Fisher. March 23, 2020 5 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. The rise of internet connectivity and accessibility has led to a corresponding uptick in serial entrepreneurship over the past decade. Defining success in that context is a whole other topic. Some would tie it to monetary gain, while others might point to innovation or positive global impact.  All in all, the best serial entrepreneurs aren’t solely driven by money. They also enjoy the challenges that lead to success, and get a thrill out of processes such as product development and the creation and unification of teams. But there are only 24 hours in a day, fewer waking hours and even fewer hours that can solely be designated for work-related purposes. Entrepreneurs are still human beings that need to maintain balance, despite their tendency to […]

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3 Things to Consider When Creating a Spinoff Company

From Ferrari to Trello, some of the business’s most recognizable names were offshoots of established companies. March 13, 2020 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. When your company has grown significantly and a new product or service has scaled within the larger operation, it’s tempting to turn that unit into a spinoff company. Many successful companies are spinoffs. Take software giant Trello, which originated as a subsidiary of Atlassian, or Ferrari, which spun off from Fiat. The decision to break out a sector of your business on its own depends on a number of factors, including available talent and resources. But despite any challenges, there are three compelling reasons to say yes to spinning off. 1. Customers connect better with focused brands Matt Mickiewicz, the founder of SitePoint, created a spinoff because, in his words, “People can only associate one thing with a name.” And it’s true; if you originally purchased from a company because they […]

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7 Tips to Improve Your Sleep While Business Traveling

Don’t let rest deprivation spell doom for your bottom line. February 28, 2020 6 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. For some, traveling has the power to throw off their sleep schedule, which is something you can’t afford to have happen when people expect you to be on your A-game. A recent Biz Women article detailed data from NexTravel showing that one in five business travelers say traveling for work negatively impacts their mental health, finances, productivity and relationships. The World Health Organization has classified burnout as an actual syndrome resulting from chronic, unmanaged work stress. That NexTravel survey also shows that the global cost of burnout is estimated as high as $323 billion, with an extra $125 billion to $190 billion in associated health care costs. Traveling for work is not just bad for your sleep, but it’s bad for the bottom line. The good news is there are ways to […]

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The Anti-Cyberbullying Movement That Is Spreading Like Wildfire

Entrepreneur and #CYBERBYTE founder Andrew Rossow on combating this societal epidemic. February 14, 2020 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Online toxicity has become a rising global concern, with cyberbullying thriving on social media and gaming platforms and researchers finding a direct correlation with rising suicide rates. Thanks to these findings and the efforts of high-profile activists like Monica Lewinsky, the world has started to take a closer look at this epidemic. But one social-media movement, #CYBERBYTE, has taken anti-bullying awareness to the next level and onto the red carpet. The campaign was established four years ago by millennial internet and technology attorney Andrew Rossow, and it aims to bring Hollywood and Silicon Valley closer to its fanbase and consumer network, creating an opportunity for the public to really listen, absorb insights and collectively help combat cyberbullying. “We idolize these individuals so much that we often don’t know why we look up to them,” says […]

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How to Plan an Initial Sales Strategy That Hits the Ground Running

Mentorship and malleability are among the main tenets for strong results out the gate. February 3, 2020 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Starting a business or launching a new product is both exciting and daunting, and many entrepreneurs feel a lack of clarity as to how to first create a sales strategy to hit the ground running with sales. After all, they never have opened it to a market before and seldom have all of the insights to know how it will perform. The creation of a sales strategy is a critical beginning step before the product ever becomes available. Sit down with your team months ahead of the launch date and work through the strategy. Planning can take longer than expected, especially when outsourcing or hiring help in the form of salespeople or advertising firms. Here are four tips to help you plan your […]

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How Creating a Long-Term Business Plan Can Help Prevent Burnout

Big-picture goal-setting can stop future stress before it starts. January 30, 2020 5 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Starting a businesses can be like throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks. Even if goals were initially clear, once the rubber hits the road, things continue to change and morph, keeping us reactive and out of the driver’s seat. It makes sense then, that one of the most common causes of burnout — according to Pi Slice founder and CEO and Entrepreneur contributor Genny Ghanimeh — is “working hard with the inability to shut off.” Many entrepreneurs find themselves doing just this: working long, laborious hours around the clock to make their business click in this period of chaos, when the real work should start with one intensive strategy session to create a business plan. Now, this isn’t just a business plan in the traditional sense. This a plan for […]

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How to Manage Multiple Companies at Once (And Still Feel On Top of It)

Key advice for serial entrepreneurs who find themselves working on multiple projects at a time. January 28, 2020 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Although most entrepreneurs start with just one business, as they scale operations and build out a team, they’re often able to start other businesses, too. Inevitably, this is the ultimate form of multi-tasking and must be done tactfully with the right infrastructure within each company. Just ask Joshua Gould — with four portfolio companies on his plate, he learned how to master this intensive form of multitasking early. He is now the CEO of both The Big Word Group and a new company called TBW Global.  We sat down so I could better understand how exactly he manages all of them from a high level and how other entrepreneurs can walk in his footsteps and build their own empires.  1. Groom a qualified team member to […]

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Can Hollywood Survive Streaming?

Entrepreneurs are creating Hollywood funding platforms for the new wave of creators. January 24, 2020 8 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. This past decade is the one that altered the very definition of Hollywood. (Verb: to stream.) Streaming services, of course, have been challenging the Hollywood status quo for years. Netflix began streaming movies and television shows in 2007 and has grown into a giant, spending $12 billion on programming, in 2019 alone, to entertain more than 158 million subscribers worldwide. There are 271 online video services available in the United States, according to the research firm Parks Associates.  The business of Hollywood is rife with problems and I’m not just talking about the #metoo movement that has brought awareness to an underlying issue that needs to be resolved. But, more business-centric issues that affect production companies, investors and the general public, whether they realize it […]

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Top 3 Obstacles Entrepreneurial Women Must Overcome

Hurdles still remain before females gain true parity in business. January 21, 2020 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. There’s plenty of reason to believe 2020 is going to be the year of the female entrepreneur. The workforce is becoming increasingly diverse as more women, including women of color, seek to make their visions a reality and capitalize on it. A study commissioned by American Express reported that, as of January 2017, an estimated 11.6 million female-owned businesses generated more than $1.7 trillion collectively in revenue.  However, it’s worth noting that while startup life is obviously never easy, tackling it head-on as a female entrepreneur presents its own unique set of challenges. Thankfully, we are at the cusp of a shift, and these obstacles should soon be a thing of the past. But until then, here are three hurdles worth looking out for, and how to leap over […]

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Top 5 Must-Attend Events for Startups

Gain actionable insights and network with brilliant minds at these upcoming conferences and summits. January 17, 2020 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. While startup life presents many hurdles, it’s perfectly possible for goals to be achieved at an accelerated rate upon gaining the right insights from the right people and implementing them the right way. It all starts by expanding your social circle and making connections with people who’ve achieved the goals you’re trying to reach.  Events, conferences, summits and expos oriented toward startups serve as a great starting point. It’s empowering to hear experts speak on their path to accomplishment, and their actionable insights might provide shortcuts that spare your team from having to learn things the hard way. Plus, the networking opportunies are priceless. Here’s a list of some of the top events for startups that are absolutely worth attending in 2020. Related: 6 Tactics to Get […]

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20 Podcasts That Will Help You Grow in 2020

Spend some time this holiday season tuning in to what the experts have to say. December 21, 2019 11 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. To be a well-rounded business owner today, one must master not only business and finance, but other areas like mental and physical health, family, spirituality and sustainability. And as we approach the next decade, it seems like every self-proclaimed successful entrepreneur has a new weekly podcast offering guidance on these and other topics. So how do you sort through the fluff to find real, honest, useful advice that will help you on your own path? Here’s a list of podcasts worth downloading or streaming, including both familiar names and smaller, up-and-coming series that deserve recognition.   Do you ever observe these massive billion-dollar empires and find yourself asking, “But how?” Well, this podcast is your new best friend. Its host, Guy Raz, masterfully facilitates intimate conversations with all-star founders, focusing on […]

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What Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know About Visual Search

From Amazon to Pinterest, the entire e-commerce ecosystem is making the switch. December 19, 2019 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Presented by E-commerce businesses live and breathe by keyword searches, but new technology is causing the industry to think outside the written word, and all in the name of efficiency. When you’re searching for a Roomba or a smartphone, a keyword search works pretty well. But if you’re looking for something specific and unique, like a particular article of clothing or a coffee table, it’s much more efficient to search by picture. That’s why visual search is making such a huge splash in the retail industry. It taps into the idea that sometimes words fail, but a picture says it all. Keyword failure was the genesis for the entrepreneurial tech company, Syte, which is one of the major providers of visual-search technology. The company’s co-founder, […]

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How to Position Your Product in a Niche Market

Just because what you’re selling is unique doesn’t mean it can’t find its audience. December 14, 2019 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. When you have a niche product — something that positions a unique value proposition to a customer — it can be hard to figure out your place in the product landscape and market competitively to your target customer. And despite the specificity of your business, you’re still likely to have some competition. So, what’s the best way to position your product in a niche market? 1. Thoroughly assess the competition.  Although you’ve likely already perused their websites and gotten the inside scoop on who comprises your competition, you won’t learn much unless you do a full-blown deep dive. Create an entire document dedicated to competitor analysis. BDC recommends looking mainly at the following categories: products and services, pricing, positioning and branding and market reputation. You may […]

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6 Variables To Assess When Building a CBD Brand

Don’t be among the bad actors flooding this busy market. December 6, 2019 5 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Since its legalization in 2018, the CBD retail industry has experienced explosive growth. Brightfield’s 2019 U.S. CBD report predicts that the market will grow to an astonishing $23.7 billion by the end of 2023. That’s led to a flood of entrepreneurs looking to make a profit in this lucrative space. Unfortunately, the abundance of businesses has made it difficult to choose a trustworthy brand or go-to CBD product — especially for newcomers. Although there are several great companies in the CBD industry, sadly, there is also an overwhelming number of bad actors producing low-grade products. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, 69 percent of online CBD products are mislabeled; some had extra CBD, some had less, and some contained hidden cannabinoids. As a consumer, you do not […]

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Yes, AI Can Make Company Websites Accessible to All

Three takeaways from sitting down with accessiBe CEO Shir Ekerling. November 27, 2019 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Presented by Most of us take Internet connectivity and accessibility for granted. As active members of the digital age (with an ever-growing number of people being born into it), the connected life has truly become a normal part of our every day. However, that is not necessarily the case for people with disabilities. As Brian Wang writes for Next Big Future, “Web design and other elements managed to build a wall between online platforms and those with disabilities, making them only half as likely to access technology and creating a significant data divide for more than 56 million people in the U.S. with a disability.” It’s an oversight that has neglected a powerful customer base by restricting its access to platforms due to limited navigation capabilities. Business owners carry a […]

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Top Fintech Trends Entrepreneurs Must Watch in 2020

Whether it’s online trading or crypto conversions, the future of finance is fluid. November 21, 2019 4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Presented by Financial technology (fintech), for all of its faults, helps us get more things done more efficiently. Artificial Intelligence (AI) takes it even further, allowing us to conduct business and have conversations when there isn’t even another human involved. We can have online chats with bots, for example, to accomplish or learn myriad things. Innovation is always on the horizon, though, especially in the fintech realm.  As more fintech options become commonplace, every industry must either adapt or be phased out. With the turn of the new year, 2020 promises big changes in how we manage, spend and access our money, so you’ll want to keep an eye on some of these emerging trends as you make financial decisions regarding partnerships and investments. Minimizing Traditional Institutions Several […]

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