Today on 5 Minute Marketing we’re talking about RISK. For some, risk might be a scary word. For others, it might feel like a new challenge. Whatever side you lean towards, there’s one thing we all have in common: sooner or later, we’re going to have to deal with risk.
I’m currently in Austin, TX meeting some new SamCart employees and as I was walking to lunch I realized I didn’t see any of those “rent by the minute” scooters that have been taking over all the major cities. I remembered I had heard that Austin’s local government had removed all the scooters because they were causing safety issues. That must have hurt the companies whose scooters were confiscated. But, that’s the risk you take when you try something new.
I want you to know that risk is not just normal- it’s necessary. You have to be comfortable with risk if you are going to make it in business- or any goal you may have.
Listen to today’s episode to hear how I manage risk as a business owner and my hope for you when you are deciding what or how much to risk.
Remember- no risk, no reward.
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If I’m not risking my whole life, you know, all of the money I have on this one Facebook ad campaign, I’m gonna take a small piece and I’m gonna test it. I’m gonna limit my downside.
What’s going on, everybody? Um, I’m walking down the street of Austin right now. It is hot as crap down here. I thought it was gonna be nice. It’s actually nicer in D.C. in April than it is in Austin, just FYI. Um, anyway, so, I’m walking down the street and I’m noticing, where the hell did all the scooters go? There used to be the … I- I’m going blank on the different names. Um, there’s, like, Lime, and I think even Lyft has scooters down here now and there’s, like, two other companies that have those little rideshare scooters where you scan it with your phone, you know, their little barcode on the scooter. You scan it. It turns on and you ride it. It charges you, you know, whatever, $1 a minute or whatever it is, and you jump off the scooter and you’re good. Bing, it, you know, pings your credit card and it was a fun way to get around. Kinda crazy because there’s frickin’ scooters everywhere, especially in Austin.
I’m looking around and they’re all gone. Yeah, I noticed this last time I was here. I’m here this time because we just hired three new people, um, in our Austin office for SamCart. We almost have more people net down here in Austin than we do up in D.C. now, which is cool, so I came down to hang out with everybody. And, so, I’m noticing there’s no scooters and it just made me think of a conversation I had, uh, I think it was online. It was, like, through Facebook comments or somebody with some, uh, about one of the videos I had posted, uh, last couple weeks, and I don’t even remember the context. But, uh, the worry from this new entrepreneur whose trying to start an online business was, you know, hey, you know, uh, this sounds pretty risky, like, you know, if I have to spend some money on ads and what happens if I don’t make that money back?
And it- it, like, the- the side of me that has no patience wants to yell at those people and say, “Well, obviously, there is, there’s risk, obviously. If there was no risk in business, everyone would have a multimillion-dollar business. Like, it would be easy, but it’s not easy ’cause there is risk involved and you gotta know what you’re doing. You don’t just jump into scenarios with your eyes closed. Like, there is risk for Lyft and Lime and all these other scooter companies to start doing what they’re doing. Like, what happens when the city gets pissed and the politicians come and steal all your scooters? You got a big-ass problem. You just sold or bought a ton of scooters and now those scooters are gone and you can’t make money from them, and hopefully you can get them back, but I guess is the city didn’t just steal them and keep them.”
Um, anyway, just for some context, that’s what I heard happen here is that the- the city government actually, like, hated having all these scooters around. People would get in accidents, falling down and breaking their arms, running into cars, doing stupid crap that people do when they get on a scooter. And so, the city came and just rounded them all up. So, the, what makes a smart entrepreneur is you understand, number one, there is risk. Like, these are the risks. If we go into this city, you know, we- we might have an issue, but you have back-up plans. You go into multiple cities so that if one shuts you down, you have the other ones as back-ups and you can take the scooters that you paid money for that got rounded up and you take them to another city.
So, like, you constantly, number one, you don’t worry about, uh, the- the risk involved. It’s, like, you’re worried about it, but you plan for it and you understand, look, I’m not risking the whole business by making this move. I’m not risking my whole life, you know, all of the money I have on this one Facebook ad campaign. I’m gonna take a small piece and I’m gonna test it. I’m gonna limit my downside, but you’re never gonna get rid of all downside. It’s physically impossible. So, if that’s what’s holding you back that there’s a little bit of downside, I’m sorry, but you gotta get the hell over it. Like, you just have to, or get better at limiting your downside, period. That’s all you gotta do.
So, anyway, that’s the rant for today. Um, I gotta go find our guys. We’re meeting them up for lunch, um, but I gotta get in some air conditioning. It’s hot down here. It’s only, like, 11:30 in the morning. So, anyway, that’s, uh, limit your downside, understand there is risk. Every business has risk. The biggest companies in the world, I mean, these scooter companies now are, like, hundred and, of millions of dollars in value. Probably a billion-dollar value, one of them, and they’re, uh, they’re dealing with risk. They’re getting, uh, shut down in certain cities, but they’re figuring it out. They understood before they went in that’s a problem and they figured out a remedy for it. I’m sure they have a back-up plan, even if their back-up plan is, well, every city shut us down, like, our business is done. Well, at least you got 5,000 scooters, however many scooters they have. You can sell them on Craigslist and make some of your money back.
Like, it, uh, even in the worst case scenario, have a back-up plan. It’ll make you feel better. It’ll make you take bigger risks, and hopefully you’ll be well-prepared for them. So, that’s all I got. I’ll catch you guys later.
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