Do you have any business tips you wish you knew when you started out?

almost 6 years ago from Ivan Bjelajac, Co-Founder @ Bien / bien.studio

  • Mason LawlorMason Lawlor, almost 6 years ago (edited almost 6 years ago )

    I've been running a design/dev agency for 4-5 years. I'll take a whack at your Q:

    1. Don't take outside funding
    2. Don't give anyone more power/equity as yourself unless you know them extremely well
    3. Set a minimum amount, (i.e. $2500 or $5000) tell clients you only take 100% upfront for those budgets.
    4. Don't underestimate the power of spec work
    5. Specialize in a system that you have a competitive understanding of
    6. If you're going to take payments online, use WePay
    7. Read: The E-Myth Revisited (might recommend "Rework" as well).
    8. Build great documentation, and you'll be able to scale faster
    9. Don't confuse scale with success
    10. Do exceptional work, and if you find yourself becoming jaded, re-evaluate your business

    Those are just some valuable lessons I've had. Good luck!

    Couple extras I thought of:

    • If you give clients 10% off for the first 7-10 days after you send your invoice, I've found the close rate is much higher.

    • When doing the "discover process" with a client, really dig in and question everything about their last project. I've found they will usually tell you how much they payed even, which can result in charging a lot more and not feeling bad about it.

    1 point