When I first began on my entrepreneur journey, my credit was in tatters. Personal circumstances and a failed marriage meant no bank would look at me, and so, to follow my dream, I had to begin with what was in my pocket. The sum total of £10.
Today, I like to think I’m successful; of course, I must blow my own trumpet to prove this. I write for the Huffington Post, I’ve won many awards and I’m regularly quoted on Forbes magazine.
I’m a copywriter, published author, a beauty director, a CEO, a founder, a marketing consultant, a mum, a wife and an entrepreneur. And it all started with £10.
This is how I did it.
All You Need is Time
I won’t lie, one of my pet hates is when a friend comes to me with the generic, “oh I wish I had what you had but I just don’t have the time.” This implies that anyone could copy my career if they had some time from work. It’s insulting on many levels. The reason I find it so offensive is because I didn’t have the time, I built the businesses through the night, working through the day to pay the rent. As a single parent I had no childcare, I had to work while the children slept.
If an entrepreneur tells you they have no time for pursuing their dream, they’re really not passionate enough about that dream to begin with.
This all sounds like a moan but it’s not. I loved every minute.
A History is Free
I began as a copywriter but although I’d written stories, books and technical copy I hadn’t freelanced before. Therefor I started delivering work for pennies at the beginning in order to build a portfolio. It didn’t take long for clients to see the value of my work and the feedback, of course, was phenomenal (as I was very cheap) and my reputation was born. Within a few months I really wasn’t very cheap at all. These days I have my very own financial advisor Jeff Alexander. (We swap services for each other!)
Take Advantage of the Internet
A strong internet presence is essential when you’re setting up in business online. I recently tried to find a web designer online who had applied for a job. There was nothing about his company, not even a website. Needless to say, he didn’t get a call back.
There are so many places where you can promote yourself, you can set up a free profile and sell your services straight away. All you need is time and passion.
Where Did the £10 Go?
With all of this for free, you may wonder why it cost any money at all? My £10 bought a domain name using my own name for £1.99 (here’s my marketing consultant website) and a month’s website builder subscription. I’m no web designer.
This way I could pitch my portfolio online and start ranking in the search engines for my preferred keywords. I’m now no.4 when you search for copywriting services and I’ll admit, I haven’t done anything on the site for quite some time.
Of course, if you are buying and selling, you need a little more investment than a tenner. (I’m quite convinced that you could start a business with the cost of one product alone, but that’s me). You may need good credit (these guys helped me sort mine out once I began earning real profit). You need the stamina, you need the time but as long as you have the passion and drive, you’ll be just fine.
In summary, please don’t put off your entrepreneur journey just because you think you need oodles of money or pots of time. It’s a myth. All you need is a little imagination, a lot of intelligence and the fire in your belly. But first, you need to be in it to win it!
Martina Mercer is a freelance marketing consultant, editor and copywriter. Her clients include big brands such as Tax Rebate Services andSunday Woman Magazine. Martina writes for a variety of publications such as Huff Post, Forbes and Moz. She has over 15 years experience in marketing, SEO and copywriting.