I see it too, that perfect image. Sitting by the pool, sipping a cocktail, secure in the fact that the benjamins are rolling into your bank account while you soak up the sun – the dream of a 100% online business, all the time, for everything.
The amazing thing is, it seems as though brands all over the world are killing it with online businesses – in this age of technology and social media – and they are! These days every person is a brand, and every little business has the potential to be a global business. My Mum could build a website if she had to, and my Dad has just discovered LinkedIn (yikes). In fact, my 87 year old grandfather knows how to open an email! Things are getting weird. The power is in your hands, literally, with smartphones and laptops and the good old fashioned ‘internet’ – to create a scalable online business and retire early.
Woah slow down now – before you go running off to create this magical online business, I’m going to share my opinion (because I’m THAT person) – the hard truth is, nothing can ever be all online.
This is for two reasons;
1) Because we’re human
Deep down within us, we all want real connections with other humans. The beauty of technology is being able to connect with millions of people instantaneously and scale your business idea. Harness the power of technology to connect with the world, for sure, but don’t forget that people want to connect with people (not just a screen).
Also, we humans enjoy actually talking to other humans – it’s wired in our brains to desire this. Some of the best ideas, creativity and connections actually come from the real world. Whether it be networking, events, strategising or simply within your own team – social media and technology should support the real world stuff, and reflect it – it’s a luxury add-on. Make the effort to go into the world, meet people and be the human behind your brand.
2) Running a business is still running a business
FACT: at some point, you’ll need to talk to people. You’ll probably need to create videos of yourself, run events or generally be physically present for business deals and networking. Before you get caught up in the beautiful idea of an online business, be aware that it is still running a business! You’ll need to hustle your butt off, and the best hustling is in-person hustling. Online businesses include all the trimmings of a regular business, with the added headache of technology overwhelm – get ready!
All of that being said, I love my online business. I learned very quickly ‘Online’ is a support to the offline world. My biggest piece of advice is really “make your brand human” and choose online platforms that reflect what you want to achieve.
Now go forth and beat me to cocktails by the pool! (I’ll meet you there)
A little bit more about Collabosaurus:
Collabosaurus is like a dating site for businesses. It help brands gain amazing marketing exposure by finding valuable, mutually beneficial partnerships within complimentary industries. Collabosaurus makes finding creative collaborators around events, social media, referral partnerships simple.