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Ask Me anything About Starting A business! Online Startup or Store front!

Craig L Carda
Dec 3, 2017

I have years of experience from Startups both Store front and online, I have done Collabrations with all types of niches and am a believer in people doing the right thing rather than taught paid courses! Learn by experience and be prepare to adjust! I like working with niche based platforms and seeing how to adjust it to achieve maximum success! I also do things different, And can help you create a better game plan without using so much of just your funds. I can help with launching succesful kickstarters for example one I just started. KickStarter launch Alot of people like my views and I have good analogies that will help you understand what you are doing and the purpose. I know also about Ecommerce and how to make money that will slowly grow! Do not believe the hype that you will make thousands of dollars your first week. In order to do this you would have had to pre game, Develop the site, Drive a media sources, blogged about it, Did backlinks and researched others. Online is not make money quick! Is it possible absolutely! And most of the time its very enjoyable. And you get what you put in! 

A good example of one of my sites I launched recently doing well https://ugot2havethis.com/

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1757463291/wood-gifts-that-make-a-personal-memory

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Conversation (50)

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Do you have a book or any published article for starting a business - self help?

Dec 8, 8:51PM EST0

No, I believe books and articles are motivated by self promotion and making money off them. I don't think this is something that should be done that way. I think with the right leaders, research, and trial and error more things seem to be accomplished. Paying for a book usually states I am hiding something or making something of what is already out there. 

Dec 8, 11:33PM EST0

Questions made by Sherryl

Dec 4, 12:21PM EST0

Did it provide you with enough of a answer?

Dec 4, 3:13PM EST0

what are the tools, apps you use to have smooth production flow for your business in ecommerce?

Dec 4, 11:41AM EST0

The biggest thing with ecommerce is you want products that are unique that fit your niche. You have to build a realationship with the vendor if you choose dropship. If you have never done it before I reccomend shopify, If your willing to take it on yourself with low cost try wix. The best apps are Popups and mail chimp. You want to make a statement but not overwhelm someone. Here is a Ecommerce project I started that will convert into my product line. www.ugot2havethis.com.

I say start with google anything, merchant circle, adwords, and then apps for website would be beekiting service apps. Klaviko email form, OUtfy is great for social.  

Dec 4, 12:06PM EST0

If you are to enter a new business venture, what qwoukd it be and why?

Dec 4, 8:03AM EST0

Great question nikita! I am currently working on my venture for www.ugot2havethis.com, It's about handmade wood gifts, from watches, sunglasses and jewelry. I am about a month in and loving it! Things happened a little faster since I have had the background in wood/lumber for years, I had the audience and not the idea. I am working on branding and creating product right now I started a kickstarter to get the added interest and make the proccess to do it off and online. check out the link here! Kickstarter-Wood gifts that make it personal! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1757463291/wood-gifts-that-make-a-personal-memory

I chose it because I love gifts and sentimental things, I think these types of product will provide it. Read more about it there and feel free to pass the link around! Thanks for the question 

Dec 4, 10:41AM EST0

Wonderful experience really.

Dec 4, 6:46AM EST1

Thanks This AMA was a wonderful experience, I enjoyed the platform, questions and the willingness to learn. It's all about the right expectations, and doing the hard work. That's what makes a wonderful experience when you see it happen. Each time I do it, I have to say thats my favorite part. I picture all the hours put in and research put in when the sales start happening. It's a heck of a ride! I love it! 

Dec 4, 10:35AM EST0

What are the factors affecting the failure of a business?

Dec 4, 2:09AM EST1

Factors that affect a failure of a business is a person and or team not being able to game plan, strategize and follow through. There is the right person for the job and if it is just you, You need to research! Stick to one part of a business til you find something that hits. People think they start a website, or a business and it all just works out? Not the case, Each part of the business makes it a success, The product, marketing, the transaction, The person involved interaction and the investment. Theres alot more to it than that, feel free to reach out on your topic in message so maybe I can pin point it better based on your business. 

Dec 4, 10:33AM EST0

Can you predict if a business will last long in the market?

Dec 4, 1:52AM EST1

Ha! Good Question, But no. I have seen others and include myself That say that will not last on peoples ventures only to be wrong. We really have no prediction on how people behave if the right strategy is there, Or they change it a little to hit a different demographic. It's amazing just by little changes to product or services they become popular again. For example the "Pet ROCK" just a rock with a face on it. Started in the 70's reinvented in the 80's just by putting packaging on it and survived all through 20 years by going to different niches, stores, websites, Made a couple million which is nothing to sneeze at when your investment is 45 cents per rock for packaging and painting a face. Knowing how to market is a very valuable tool. Also knowing price point these rocks were around 2-7 dollars through time. People are impulsive, buying a small item that has a face on it is kinda nifty but would be easy to do. 

Dec 4, 10:28AM EST0

Is it possible to start a new business with a very small investment?

Dec 4, 12:57AM EST1

Absolutely! Some of the Best businesses start out with 0 or small investment. It is more exciting this way but slower, all though not always! You will find ways to reach out to more people, probably less liable to get scammed and you will be more passionate about it. Lets face it, With a little investment like say buying a piece of wood you turned it into a piece of art! That is the ultimate goal right? To do that you vision it out, plan it, Draw on it, sand it and paint or stain it til you are satisfied. People that throw money at wood or problems do not usually receive a return! Someone just picks up the money and reclaims the wood, Then your out on both! People with small investments or little to lose will do it right I have noticed, They will research, Plan and use spare time to do it right. People that do have lots of money now still use the smallest investment possible, But they do the research to make sure its safe. It's the people that have money, And no great Idea I worry about. Falling into gimicks, giving up, and trying anything to get ahead without doing anything. IT DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY! you need drive...Nothing is free and it is work. You will Get what you put in. 

Last edited @ Dec 4, 1:07AM EST.
Dec 4, 1:07AM EST0

I came from a rural area, wherein there is a less business opportunity what field of business would you like to suggest that you think will surely work?

Dec 4, 12:12AM EST0

In rural areas you probably still have a good niche in service like service offerings etc, these are valuable. A good one is mentoring in something you are good at, and offering a skype online or video conference. If it's really rural switch to online finding products to dropship doing Eccommerce. Do not quit your day job though it takes time but it works, buy some of the products you would drop ship and buy them show videos of them on you tube explaining them and what they do for benefits, For example health and beauty or jewelry. Do a small town event where you invest a little later and sell at the event showing people buying them, You get approval this way even if it is Ecommerce. 

Last edited @ Dec 4, 12:57AM EST.
Dec 4, 12:57AM EST0

What would you suggest a startup should do to hit the next level. My business has been around for about 2 years (officially) and maintaining but we want to grow to a more sustainable level. (This question is in regards to mentors, investors, etc.)

Dec 3, 11:57PM EST1

This is one of my favorite topics! After a year or two the business has become effective, makes money but not enough to grow. It's like a stale plateau level. This is where the group comes in, maybe a early meeting or a lunch. Tell them where your at and you want them to come up with ideas that evolve around what the business needs are, Give them some type of ownership of a project. Have them nominate the leader besides you. set the time frame maybe a week or 2 to do it again and everyone has to propose an idea. Product, Service, software etc. Then start a vote and pick 2. Have each person poll them on twitter, facebook or any type of poll to see who gets excited by what. You then have the vote on that one service and you have a following of people that would pay for that. You game plan it, review the costs, Start a Crowd fund and contact all those people in the poll. You will have the backing without sitting there waiting for the next big thing. IF that doesnt work look for angel funding, Investors that will take a percentage on a length term. That way they will promote your thing too because its protecting the investment.

Last edited @ Dec 4, 1:09AM EST.
Dec 4, 12:50AM EST1

These are some great ideas! We did try crowdfunding and found that we were a bit underprepared for the journey, although we did learn a lot. Investors are definitely something we are looking into as well. 

Dec 5, 10:02PM EST0

What is the most important factor in a field of business to start of?

Dec 3, 11:42PM EST1

The Factor I would say  Make sure this is something you want to do in 5 years, You have to be passionate and transparent. State what is going on, express the value to others. Being open is hard to do but is the most rewarding factor in a business. You will be able to listen and overcome obstacles simply with transparency, You have nothing to hide it then builds trust with partners, customers, and other people involved. 

Last edited @ Dec 4, 12:41AM EST.
Dec 4, 12:40AM EST0

Have you ever encounter a strictly demanding customer and dealt with it successfully?

Dec 3, 11:40PM EST1

Yes  I have encountered LOTS of  extremely demanding and rude customers, They actually are the easiest to deal with, One they want want to be heard, 2 they usually know what they want. Let them finish their rant, public or phone , do not interupt. Do not tell them to calm down, once they finish ask them their name and if it is ok to call them by it. Say there name first. Then ask them about there demands, Repeat their demands back to them, Tell them They have every right to be upset and your willing to work out a resolution to be satisfied. It's usually 2 things, a coupon not honored anymore or a return. Empathize with them and put your hand out to shake theirs, apologize for the incident or whatever it is and say you would like to give them a call later to follow up on their needs. Offer a small discount, Do the return if needed. OR explain policies that you have no control over. Explain that you are now a person of contact and need time to process everything and see what you can do. Make sure you follow up though, People look at this as going above and beyond and are always calm recieving the phone call. 90% of the time I did nothing to satisfy their needs they just wanted to rant, by the time I made the phone call they apogized to me. 

Dec 4, 12:33AM EST0

What is the right attitude of a business owner in dealing with the customers anger?

Dec 3, 11:07PM EST0

This is a good question but usually needs more info, I always like to repeat the customers concern, and follow it with the same emotion. IE: I understand you are upset about this item not working to your expectations, I am too, I care about quality and your opinion matters. Let's see what might have happened. BE As Genuine as possible!!! You do not want them slamming your name, business or product around. It will go viral quick. Sometimes offering a small discount or answering the question in a genuine manner it will resolve itself. IF not ask more questions, Do not avoid anything. ask them what the resolution they would like, If it is a refund do not think twice, tell them to come in or ship it back and ask after the fact is there something else they were interested in. 

Dec 3, 11:25PM EST0

I want to start a small store what advice can you give me before I go ahead and finally start?

Dec 3, 11:07PM EST0

Small stores are a personal favorite, The best advice I can give is where ever it is:  start a press release, invite the locals to the opening, Share your story of what your doing and what relates to what the town or city, Do a event or something small, Take lots of pictures, post them on social media, create your following of the store before launch make sure your listed on google and show pictures of how the story unfolded the condition of the store before what you did. You will instantly grab peoples attention due to wanting to know more. During the event or soft open make sure your engaged and hearing what they think and what else you should offer. I promise they will ask, "Why don't you have this, Or do you have this?" Make sure your stuff or service is unique to one capture bigger margins and make it personal. 

Dec 3, 11:18PM EST0

In your own thoughts, do you think all types of business can be done over the internet?

Dec 3, 10:53PM EST0

In my Own thoughts, NO. I think some business will remain as a store front. And some novelty shops are making there way back, also small local niches are impossible to sell online without a face to a business name. A good example a lot of service can be done online but your still going to want to reach out call or meet them. Also I think its healthy to have a combination of the 2. Drive business online while you run a business from home. Look at it from a consumer point of view. You will know if it works. 

Dec 3, 11:12PM EST0

In what stage of a newly opened business wherein you can finally say you're on the right track or you have chosen the right business for you?

Dec 3, 10:32PM EST0

Love this question! If you follow your game plan and you are making a little more than you are spending, within a couple weeks maybe a month tops, This may seem small but It is the proper gauge. If you are not seeing any traction, Things are not viral, your not making any money, And people are not reviewing you, ranking you, it's time to change what it is your doing or selling maybe just even a little is drastic enough, do not overlook simple things. online would be title tags, store front would be the sign. all important in driving traffic in. But once you see it, and others are buying it becomes contagious. you will know. 

Dec 3, 11:07PM EST0

What is the very first sentence you would like to tell your client before proceeding to the business start up plan?

Dec 3, 9:02PM EST0

Intresting question, I would say the First Sentence before The plan is.... "Provided we come up with a game plan, What is your level of commitment in cost, time and planning." I think it's important to set expectations before a game plan. You almost always want to be a over achiever but sometimes things may not work out usually due them giving up because the expectations were not set. 

Last edited @ Dec 3, 9:12PM EST.
Dec 3, 9:11PM EST0

What is the most popular site that you consider to be the most helpful free advertisement for newly aspired businesses?

Dec 3, 8:48PM EST0

This is a hard question to answer without knowing the niche etc. But I would say Free based is using friends and family of course have them share on social media. Then I would say any press release, and then once you fill that out using it on social media. Based on broad spectrum I would say social media being the best free. Then I would say niche based would be reddit, Groupon, and affiliated marketing with percentage based commisions. 

Dec 3, 9:03PM EST0

What kind of business will you recommend for aspiring business minded people in your own area?

Dec 3, 8:21PM EST1

I would reccomend service business, It is rewarding and it pays pretty well after a while if you treat each client as the golden egg they will tell others, It moves a little faster. Granted still takes time, But I Feel its a little more rewarding, You feel like you solved a problem and they feel like they can count on you for the next issue. 

Dec 3, 8:28PM EST0

What advice can you give for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Dec 3, 8:19PM EST1

Good question, My biggest piece of advice is do not expect results overnight! Set real expectations and a game plan that last a month to begin with. Review your game plan and see what you accompished at the end of the month, pat yourself on the back and set new goals. I always see people thinking it happens fast. You will get what you put into it that is for sure! But it takes time. 

Dec 3, 8:23PM EST0

welcome, welcome. Thanks for joining. I hope everyone has their coffee, Notepads and a open mind. I will try to make it as enjoyable, and hopefully I can provide some key take aways which we can follow up on later. 

Last edited @ Dec 3, 8:06PM EST.
Dec 3, 8:02PM EST0

Is there any special skill needed to start up a new business?

Dec 3, 6:51PM EST1

I would not say "special skill" But passion comes to mind. More of a emotion. If I had to say you need a skill It would be:  Follow through! Write a plan out daily or weekly and follow through. That is one of the best skills you can have.

Last edited @ Dec 3, 8:06PM EST.
Dec 3, 7:32PM EST0

What business strategy can you recommend for people offering services?

Dec 3, 6:12PM EST1

What Business strategy can I recommend for people offering serivices?

Service Is personal right? You need to better than your competion, You follow up more, offer free consults, video or phone, The biggest deal maker to close the sale is to put a voice or face to the service. Let them know who is behind this, It's personal and just not another gig. When advertising talk about benefits, NOT features. No one cares the wattage on your battery of your phone, They want to know that you can talk 8 hours! Always pretend to be the consumer and how you would want this service to look like from beginning to end. Each interaction you follow up and repeat their question and provide the answer so they know you were listening. Even by email this is important, This clarifies what you are doing for them and the cost. This will also get you a In to promote another service as needed. It's about bundling right? This is also useful and used alot in services, show packages based on price. Then what each item cost individual to shout out the value of that package. So to answer the question,  When in it comes to service, You have to be what you want in service! 

Dec 3, 6:33PM EST0

What is the most important thing to consider when you want to start a new business?

Dec 3, 10:14AM EST1

Awesome question!

First decide a couple ideas of what is important to you, what you would WANT to do in 5 years, IF your not passionate about it, They will fail. I look at long term.  

From those Ideas, pool from your friends and ask them what they would purchase, The more honest the better, If you don't trust your friends do a pintrest account and do some pictures of all the different products and spend 5 bucks boosting them, researching them, And see what pins the most. this also be done with polls on facebook, I've noticed not as honest on polls. Pins are better because they are willing to share them on their boards, They have commited. 

Be prepared to be overwhelmed, I cannot stress this enough you SHOULD write things down to come back and visit them, Some of your ideas and others you probably already heard but upon gathering information you forgot the value or it could be applied to other parts of this system. 

You will not know everything! Join discussions, Reddit is one of my personal favorites, They also have discord and facebook groups. Key based on startups, business, ideas, niches etc. Write key points down to revisit and see how people are responding to what you are doing. Also great ways to create the GAME PLAN.

GAME PLAN! Do this daily, Create tasks and stick to them, just for the day, IF your randomly just doing everything, nothing will get done. If the task for 2 hours is backlinks by blogging, do that.  Create prelaunches, or press releases or awesome for starting before you start to see how many people you appeal too. 

MY most important, IS stay passionate, Business only fails when people are not passionate, The more passionate, The more you want to learn, Research, And create realationships and see the investment worth the time. Do not listen to statistics, Most people That start something I thin have some type of attention span where they thought "hey I can do that." Sure you can do some, but each step is a learning process that applies to the next step. The Commitment. 

I know thats alot of things, and NOT just 1. But they all need to be done, to create a business. They all are just as important! 

Dec 3, 10:54AM EST0

In your opinion, what is the most sellable commodity online? What is the estimated length before you achieve your ROI?

Dec 2, 11:44PM EST1

In my opionion the most sellable commdoties are, Consumer electronics, Health and beauty, Jewelry, And services. Out of those The TOP 2 are Services and Health and Beauty.

Services, Well let's face it we all need them because we are so Involved in other projects, or it's something we know nothing about. People are going online to get these services. Your probably asking what kind? Really does not matter, You could do a video based cooking, fittness, Web training, SEO, or monitoring website service. People know there is a lot of phony so they want to connect or see a face, testimonial and return on their investment as well. For health and beauty we all know why they sell. People want to look better, feel better and have a product they attribute this miracle too. For your health gurus, It's the protien based supplements, shakes, and energy. For beauty it's Organic based products, Concealers, and lotions. Also huge now is Beard oils, creams, sculpters. 

The estimated length before you achieve a ROI depends on the type of thing you are doing and how much you have invested. I cannot say this enough, DO NOT listen to videos how some one did it days, or 2 weeks. Websites Need to Rank, Show up in search, have some social media backing. This takes a average of 2 months. But could be less depending on investment. Let's make the problem easier, 

you decide on a health nutritional supplement, It's part of a wholesale dropship, Meaning no money up front or maybe a small partner fee. Then you add your website to start I would reccomend using a host, maybe around 30 a month. then say you did a pre-launch and spent a 100 to boost things. so total invesment was around 300 before you started. I say all things going well you would at least make your money back first month, second month you would start ranking and be able to pay hosting make another couple hundred, spend another hundred of it boosting and giving samples away by month 3 things should be going smooth. Services usually see returns more slower but bigger profits based on margins. So I would say 2-5 months total. 

Dec 3, 11:13AM EST0
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