Of all the challenging, infuriating, frustrating, and rewarding things that we’ve done, launching Hop Culture ranks right up there. It’s not easy launching a business, especially when you’re independently owned and operated by two journalists. No startup is a walk in the park, but if you learn from our experience, your own venture might be that much easier.
In the song “Hustla” by The Roots, Black Thought says, “I want my baby where the cake and the icing is, out of them crises-is, off of them vices-is.” I have no idea what that means, but, in the hook, STS says, “Baby be a hustler, better be a hustler, if not, then you’re only a customer.” And that makes sense to me. If you’re not willing to wake up every morning until you collapse from exhaustion, you’re not starting a company. Period.
2. Start Small
Pace yourself. Every business starts small and grows over time.
3. Barter Everything
You have more to sell than just your inventory. Especially when you’re starting out, you can sell your time, skills, knowledge, and social media presence.
4. Be Kind, Fair, and Honest
Always, always, always be kind, fair, and honest. Because karma’s a *****. Also, it’s zero fun not closing a deal because you said something mean to someone on Twitter.
5. Keep Track of Every Dollar
As long as you’ve got cash, you’ve got a business. When that runs out… you’re done.
This video adapted from a lecture called “The Art of Bootstrapping,” given to a Pepperdine University MBA class by Kenny Gould in March 2017.