Is Your Business You?

With over 35 million online users in the Philippines, and billions more worldwide, there has never been a more exciting time to become an entrepreneur.

With so many business building tools available on the internet, everyone has the potential to become an online entrepreneur and establish their mark.

I find though, that some online businessmen seem to have a difficult time transcending their online personas when building their businesses.

Many become pay-for-hire bloggers, or simply focus on link building campaigns, leveraging off their personal network. Others are doing outsource work on the many freelance marketplaces found online, such as 99Designs.com and ELance.com.

Then you have the self proclaimed online experts. The moment you come across someone who says that they are an expert in a particular field of the internet, run in the opposite direction. I can tell you, the real experts of the web do not have to say that they are good. Others will proclaim their expertise for them.

I see so many of these online experts peddle their training seminars and workshops to supposedly teach online users how to build their personal brand. The problem with this approach is that most businesses that are built on the backs of a single entrepreneur have a difficult time growing beyond the entrepreneur’s personal reputation. Customers will always look for the entrepreneur when dealing with that business, as the product or service being peddled is inseparably intertwined with the owner who is peddling it.

Although there is nothing wrong with doing online consulting work, the opportunity to scale your business beyond your personal time and space exists.

Instead of focusing on building your personal brand online, focus instead on building products that people want. If you work on building a world-beating product, your business will scale and as a result, so will your personal brand (i.e. your reputation).

My challenge is, if you want to build a business online , then build a digital franchise. Build new intellectual properties. Patent new inventions, systems or processes. Create new brands. Establish new platforms. Build your own community.

You know you’ve succeeded when you are generating revenues even when 99 percent of your customers don’t know who you are. Then, your reputation will grow. The reward: you will attract capital, talent, and strategic partners that will scale your business to the next level. Doesn’t that sound more exciting?

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