I recently achieved a major goal I set for myself many years ago – to have a six-figure business by 30. I accomplished this without taking on debt and without using other people’s money. Although using other people’s money would be nice, it’s not a route I want because I want complete control of my business. If you feel the same way, then you need to learn how to bootstrap a six-figure business for yourself.
What is bootstrapping?
Bootstrapping is a method of funding your business which gives you complete control. With bootstrapping, you’re using your own money to grow the business. At first this looks like dipping into your savings. Over time, it looks like reinvesting some of the revenue back into the business.
A word of caution…
Don’t think you can bootstrap a six-figure business overnight. It actually took me five years of being self-employed to reach the six-figure mark. This because I had less access to capital and I did not want to get in over my head with credit cards.
I slowly built my business over time. This is important to keep in mind because in the world of perfect Instagram photos, entrepreneurship looks easy. It’s not. It will probably take more time and cost you more money than you think.
I don’t say this to scare you. I say this so you’re aware of what it actually takes to make this work. Far too many people try to bootstrap a six-figure business and don’t realize the amount of time, dedication and work.
Furthermore, I say this so you focus on generating as much revenue as you can from the get-go. The faster you generate, the more you can invest and the faster you can get to six-figures. With that being said, here’s how to bootstrap a six-figure business.
Reduce your personal expenses ASAP.
You can free up some money to bootstrap a six-figure business immediately by reducing your personal expenses. This also puts lets pressure on you because you can live off less. That way, more of the money you make can be reinvested back into the business.
Furthermore, the first couple of years can be rough. Any entrepreneur can tell you this is true. You’ll want to make sure you’re not in over your head as you grind it out. The easiest way to do that is to cut your personal expenses.
Know how you’re going to make money.
The next step to bootstrapping a six-figure business is to know how you’re going to make money. What products or services are you selling? How many sales do you need to close? What’s the price point? How many people do you need to speak with to close that many sales?
Here’s a secret that took me years to figure out. If you want to bootstrap a six-figure business quickly, start by selling products and services that are expensive. Last year I created my group coaching program which is $2,000 per sale. Because of this, I increased my revenue by 40 percent in 12 months without trying very hard.
As such, my current goal is to go harder on those sales because they make the most money the fastest. If you don’t have a high-end product, how can you create one? The truth is you need something to sell in order to bootstrap a six-figure business.
Speaking of which…
Learn how sell, negotiate and close deals.
If you need to make money, start selling.
I fervently believe that every entrepreneur should invest in education that helps them with selling. Because without sales, you essentially have no business.
When you try to bootstrap a six-figure business, its likely that the selling is your responsibility at first. This is because you’re not yet ready to hire and manage sales teams. That’s okay so long as you know how to close a deal.
If you’re uncomfortable with sales, I would start by working on your mindset. The truth is sales is an art. It’s also likely that most of what you’ve been taught to believe about sales is wrong. After that, it’s a matter of learning skills and techniques so you can sell, deal with objections and close the deal.
Just note that this does take practice. I once got rejected 60 times in one month because I didn’t yet know what I was doing. Now I am able to close deals and get credit card information over the phone. In fact, many of the prospects who rejected me back then are now my customers.
Don’t shy away from marketing yourself.
One mistake I see a lot of entrepreneurs make is shying away from marketing themselves. They tend to hide behind other people or just not use the tools that are at their disposal.
I’m here to tell you the harsh reality of the internet. We’re living in a time where you need to get people’s attention. That means you need to be everywhere and market yourself consistently.
This is one of the reasons why I do IG stories every day. It’s also why I email my list almost every single day and have my podcast syndicated everywhere possible. People consume content in different ways and they need to see you as much as possible.
In addition to putting yourself out there, you should learn the art of good marketing. Invest in learning how to write effective sales copy. If you’re able to do that, sales become easy.
For example, last week I wrote a specific email that I sent out to my list. The copy was so well written that people were literally calling my business phone inquiring about my coaching programs. That is the power of good marketing. Being able to get people to move like this makes it easier to bootstrap a six-figure business.
Finally, he who markets himself makes the money. You get people’s attention and build their trust over time. Because if no one knows who you are, it’s unlikely that they will buy from you.
Don’t be afraid to invest some money.
I hate it when I see entrepreneurs who are scared of investing money into their businesses. The reality is that you will need to invest at some point if you want to bootstrap a six-figure business.
I understand the feeling of wanting to hoard money. We’re so afraid to part with it that we don’t understand the value of investing. However, I also understand how investing thousands leads to a return of tens of thousands. For example, I invested about $3500 in a mentor and made a return of $40,000 with what she taught me.
It took me a long time to get here and I see a lot of entrepreneurs get stuck when it comes time to invest. It’s no wonder that many of them stay small and never make it to the six-figure mark.
Here’s how I’ve come to see investing in my business. If I slap an investment on my credit card, then I have a few weeks to figure out how to make more sales to pay for it. Because the money is never actually there when you need it. Instead, you need to go find it.
Of course, this is done slowly and meticulously over time. You also need a lot of discipline so you don’t go haywire. That’s where having a trusted accountant can come in handy.
Originally published here.