You Can’t Mind Your Own Business If You Don’t Have One

What’s up guys! I’m back! I’m happy people have been enjoying the blog posts. Now fair warning before you read this one…it may increase your intellect and awareness when dealing with business. Side effects also include lowering your tolerance for ignorant folks.

To Be A Business Person You Need A Business

Let me explain…there are many people who seem to not understand the meaning of entrepreneurship. Besides being creative and doing whatever it is you do, you need to make a product that sells to makes money! Or at least has a chance to. I see this the most in stand up comedy. Most folks don’t understand that they are a business. There are things to weigh out moving forward.

Firstly, what are you selling?

Jokes? Really? Like we can’t find things to laugh at without leaving the house? I can’t remember the last comic I saw that made me laugh out loud. Have a product that you sell. I hate seeing comedians brag who will have 10 shows in a month and they just show up, do their set, and then leave. You are missing the whole point. You need something that gives value to those that purchase tickets (if anyone does). What am I actually buying if I come see your live show? The heavyweights in the game have figured this out. If you pay to see Louis CK, Jim Gaffigan, Gabriel Iglesias, or Kevin Hart you are getting a unique experience and a quality time out. What’s your business value?

Who are you selling to?

Please don’t say everyone because that’s stupid. Not even Wal-Mart’s target demographic is everyone. If you are an entrepreneur of any kind you need to ask who should buy your products? Would you buy your product? If so, what are some things about yourself that draws you to that one thing? There are a million shoe companies out there but Nike’s target demographic seems to fit me perfectly. I know exactly why. There are things about me that Nike appeals to. That’s why it’s important to clearly define your product or else you can’t even begin to think about who should buy it. Lets say you write a tv show. Seems like everyone can these days. Who should watch it? What audience are you appealing to? Trust me every network on television is after a certain audience. My mom loves ABC. They have her by the couch pretty often throughout the week. However, I’m in love with Netflix. Can’t live without it. There’s a reason for that. As business men and women we have to figure out those reasons for each demographic and capitalize on that.

Why should people buy from you?

This one can be pretty difficult but if you can figure this one out you are WAY ahead of the game. Most things in entertainment aren’t NEEDS for people. Nobody needs to see fast and furious. Nobody needs to buy Jordan’s. Nobody needs a flat screen tv. Yet we are drawn to buy these things. Apple is the greatest example to me. I have so many apple products it’s ridiculous. There are several tech companies that I could buy from but I have a reason to only go to Apple. We have to create these reasons in our own businesses. If someone has 100 dollars a week for their entertainment budget or “play money” why should those dollars go to your restaurant or your subscription based service? Do you do something different than the competition? Do you offer a service others don’t? Are your prices cheaper? Are you giving more value? These things are important to understand when trying to appeal to the average person.

So With All That Said…Now What?

Tend to your business!!! If you are a comedian, develop a product, define a market, and promote the hell out of it to your potential buyers. Whether you are a painter or carpenter or public speaker it doesn’t matter. We all have to abide by that rule. You can’t make money if you don’t sell anything. If you don’t sell anything you will continue to work a day job chasing your unpaid hobby.

Personal Story Moment

I’m amazed how much my grind has changed this year. I’ve been doing comedy a few years now but I also finally opened up my music production business. Put simply, I make beats. I can’t sing or rap but I can make music. I had been wanting to do it for a while and after some encouragement from some loved ones I opened up shop a few weeks ago. The response has been amazing with my plays up over 14,000 and my first sales are coming through. As far as content goes it’s been the most successful thing I’ve made in business thus far. At first I was shocked because I was turning a profit so quickly but then I realized why. In standup the reason why money is hard to come by is because most comedians can’t leverage a venue to put them on stage. Walking into your local club to perform is one thing. Being paid for it is another. If I can bring 300 people into a club on any given night, I’m going to work there every week. If you can’t you are performing for free. Why? Because venues that are only after money can’t make money off of you. Let me give you a little secret…everyone’s after money. With music, I cracked a code that I wasn’t even aware of. I was making a product (ex.beat) and I had a defined target market (ex. singers/rappers/spoken word artists/movie producers/film composers) and then I market that to potential buyers via my website and means to e-commerce. It’s a simple model but it works. Think about these things move forward and when you come across someone who gives you their “master plan” for business and it doesn’t sound like this, just nod and smile. And then maybe go on Instagram to distract yourself from having to listen to the rest of what they’re saying.

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IG/Twitter: @jokesbynick