Bootstrapping Advice From An Online Marketing Pro
Bootstrapping your startup is tough business. That’s an obvious statement. But, what most entrepreneurs don’t realize is that there are so many emotional rollercoaster you may not be prepared for when you start your venture. Jesse Pujji is one of those people. As CEO and Co-Founder of Ampush Social, an online marketing company that helps advertisers turn clicks into customer actions, he has faced the startup rollercoaster head-on. Now he has advice for us bootstrappers that he says his team lives by.
The word just won’t get you by
“There is no such thing as just”
When Jesse and his team were first starting out, they constantly used the 4-letter word, saying that if they could just buy search campaigns and if could just close a few more clients they could generate more revenue. All of the justs took the team twice as long and were incredibly more challenging.
Advice: Don’t use the word just; it’s a word of inaction, delays and excuses. Instead, replace it with will. “We will have more clients.” This should be every team’s mantra.
Admit that you don’t know what you’re doing
Jesse’s team comes from a solid consulting and finance background, and can out Excel the best of them. The first projections and percentages of user converts and market shares concluded that the team would be banking in no time.
The problem was that when executed the clicks purchased were three times as much, the user conversion rate was a fraction of what they first projected and their dreams of instant fortune were shattered.
Advice: Don’t spend so much time analyzing, and just do it. It is only after doing it that you can gain the real info you need to grow and succeed.
Leave your hesitations at the door
The early bootstrap stage comes with many decisions: “Where do we want our office to be?” “Should we hire her, or not?” The longer you take to decide these types of things, the more likely you will lose clients, talent, and money. Jesse uses the example of his first hire that was terrible, but he helped generate the first few clients and got the ball rolling (though he left with a pink slip two months later).
Advice: Making a good decision is better than making a great decision if it takes less time. Time is money, people.
The bottom line: Take action, and don’t sit around waiting for things to happen because they won’t. Bootstrapping is a stressful venture to take on as it is, but if you are able to keep an action-focused plan in place, you’ll be able to hit the ground running. Execution, says Jesse, is the most important success indicator for new startups.
Now, stop just thinking about your startup success, young bootstrapped startups, go forth, take action and don’t ever look back.