The mystery behind money for entrepreneurs

Shacky Timburwa

“Money is only a tool. It will take you wherever you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver,” once said philosopher Ayn Rand. 

In business the number one issue for every entrepreneur is money. Thus getting money, raising money, convincing investors to give you money become critical. 

Whether you are a start-up, a small to mid-sized enterprise, or a $100-million company, your biggest problem is always money. 

There is currently a mad rush towards private equity which is the new and hot way to get financing but it remains a mystery to most entrepreneurs and owners or managers of small medium entities. 

One thing you need to understand is that money magnet unlocks the puzzle of private equity financing and shows how understanding private equity is the first step to growing wealth in your business. 

Historically, the most common ways to raise financing for SMEs was through bank loans or through the stock markets. But banks are notoriously risk averse and conservative in lending to small businesses, and the great bull market is over. 

Looking at social media influence, for the past few days, I have spent a lot of time talking about ways to attract attention, make money and build a following. 

What often gets lost in the shuffle, however, is the reason so many of us are trying to do so in the first place — namely, to make more money. 

In her latest book “Entrepreneurial You,” author Dorie Clark picks up where so many other business writers leave off.

Even if you are amazing at what you do, and even if you are recognised by your peers and clients as excellent, you can’t have a sustainable business unless you learn to monetise effectively — and that is a very different skill set, and one we don’t talk about very much in our culture. 

This week, I decided to focus on unmasking some of the mystery, and the baggage about how entrepreneurs actually earn their money. 

What exactly are their business models? What works and what doesn’t? How much are people really earning? These are things that have always been talked about behind closed doors, but have often been opaque to outsiders. 

Why are there more people than ever before who are becoming well known but still not making any money?

Thanks to the Internet, regular people have the opportunity to build a following and reach an audience. 

But many of those activities, even if glamorous, aren’t that lucrative. 

YouTube stars often generate millions of views and receive a pittance, because advertising sponsorship rates are so low. So these days, there’s often a disconnect between being well known and making money from your expertise.

One doesn’t necessarily lead inexorably to the other. You have to consciously learn how to do both things.

Why are some “thought leaders” better than others at making money from their expertise?

Professionals miss out on fully monetising their business for a few different reasons. 

Some experience self-doubt, and worry that if they’re charging for their expertise, it will open them up to criticism or being “found out.”

They typically have one revenue stream, such as consulting or offering some other professional service and it hasn’t occurred to them that there are opportunities to expand into other, related areas.

They may be interested in exploring a new revenue stream, such as podcasting, but aren’t sure where or how to start. 

They’ve seen the visible outliers — the hucksters and charlatans — in the online marketing space, and worry that if they start marketing online, they’ll be viewed in the same negative light, and want to protect their brand.

Some people once said, “People used to make money from something. Now they make money because of something.” 

Another issue is market conditions can change, and if a competitor enters the market, or starts under-pricing you,  whatever you offer is no longer relevant. 

I always say that there is a difference between money and its expression (bank notes) : money, the talents, gifts, potential and value we carry within us. 

So we go out there looking for something. Real value is deposited in us and our purpose is to extract value we carry within us until it becomes translated info bank notes, which are universally accepted as a mode of payment. 

The goal of every entrepreneur is to walk this journey of discovering value that is within them and offer it as a solution to problems humanity face and then in return you get the expression of your value which are these notes. 

Here are key takeaways from my research  

One of the most important things that an entrepreneur can do when they make windfall profits is to protect their hard work through patents and copyright procurement.  

The sector of a given product or service dictates the patent length. Being aware of these particular requirements is important in any entrepreneur’s plan for success. 

Entrepreneurs will experience growth and success through a general timeline that will adjust based on the type of product or service provided.

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