I often ask myself the question: could BrandLoom have done this in three years or maybe two years?
Now I can confidently say that the journey that we made in seven years can be easily made in 2 to 3 years if you know what to do or maybe if you have the blueprint for building a business that I have created with my practical experience of running the business for the last seven years.
We have used this blueprint to help half a dozen startups and hundreds of small businesses move their revenue from 0 to 6–7 figures every month. This blueprint has even helped our enterprise clients re-think their strategies!
While this blueprint is a multi-layered matrix that can be applied to any business, that’s not what I want to discuss today.
Common Mistakes Business Owners Make (I made them too)
Today I want to discuss the mistakes that I made while building BrandLoom that any new business can learn from and avoid it themselves.
1. Not having a big enough vision & not thinking long-term.
In the initial years, I did not have a big enough vision or plan for the business. While it’s important to think of things like keeping the operations running every month, I learned that it’s much more important to know where the business is headed in the future.
Believing and executing decisions for long-term outcomes are an absolute necessity. It takes the same energy and hard work to run a small business as it does to run a large business. I would not limit my dreams & visions if starting over.
2. Not having a defined sales process.
Again in the initial years, we did not have a thought-out sales process, leading to low conversions. We did not know what kind of clients we wanted. We accepted anyone who showed up and worked for whatever they were ready to pay. We slogged for a lot of wrong customers. We now have a defined sales process. We also have a defined client type. And we have also defined values and ethics for the company and work only with those clients whose ethics and values match ours. It saves us a lot of pain and helps us serve our selected clientele better.
3. Wasting time on the wrong things.
As a leader, the founder’s job is to lead the company and be aware of the overall trajectory of the company. In the initial years, I was busy donning hats of different employee roles and often got so engaged in it, that sometimes there was no one watching the trajectory of the company.
4. Not adopting paid marketing early on.
In the initial years, I depended a lot on cold calling and depended on my business network to get clients. I could have adopted paid campaigns early on and saved time and energy. I would also have probably, scaled much faster.
5. Not paying enough attention to the human aspect of the business.
Hiring the right people is crucial. We’ve all been there. That person who seemed like a perfect candidate is not what you wanted. Passive aggressive tendencies, negative mindsets, and poor work ethics are too common. When you start thinking you have the wrong person working for you, do not let the fact that you like them personally delay the inevitable. Let them go.
I now hire slow and fire fast.
My Takeaways as a business owner:
1. Be ready to iterate. Avoid being stagnant.
2. Be ready to fail & rise again. You will.
3. Be ready to pivot. Go where the market takes you.
4. Be ready to scale. If you are not growing, you are dying.
5. Be ready to acquire. Lateral growth is another way to scale.
In my experience, knowing when to be flexible & know when to stick to your guns is key to successful entrepreneurship. Embrace change.
My biggest learning?
“Entrepreneurship is a journey and not a destination”Me (Avinash Chandra)
I hope this can help you avoid some of the mistakes I made and cut your journey to success much shorter!
(Questions People Ask Me)
There were two major turning points for us. Initially, like everyone else, we started by offering specific piecemeal services. However, down the line, we realized that clients were not looking for a service; they were using it to solve a particular business problem.
So our first major mindset shift was to move from offering a service to offering wholesome multi-service spanning business solutions by understanding & analyzing the challenges faced by the client and making tailored recommendations that work.
The founders and the senior members of Brandloom have decades of experience working in corporate leadership positions, which makes BrandLoom better placed to analyze & understand business problems from a birds-eye view. This differentiates us head & shoulders from the competition and the gig economy.
The other turning point for us was investing regular time & funds in internal company-wide training programs for our internal teams, such as sales, design, content, SEO & development teams.
These training workshops have bought the teams together on BrandLoom’s values, mission & vision. They also help the teams stay updated with current industry standards. They have also helped facilitate knowledge sharing, improve leadership skills, and improve our internal delivery processes.
That lifted our game.
Continuous research, learning & meticulous implementation is at the forefront of BrandLoom’s growth. We use internal research and industry research to continuously create systems and solutions that can change our clients’ bottom lines.
For example, in our quest to help DTC startups that approach us regularly, we have now built a 5 stage system to create a UIUX driven high converting store along with the research-backed implementation of marketing automation strategies which has helped some of these startups to grow from nothing to $1M+ in monthly revenues in a short span of 6-10 months. This system has technical, UIUX research & marketing research strategies that work synergistically to deliver results.
We have many such internal and external systems and processes in place that are designed to deliver results for various problems faced by businesses looking to leverage digital strategies for growth.