🛣️ Street Smart Entrepreneurs

How business really works, bad investors, earning passive income, a mind-bendingly useful tool, and plenty of startup snacks below.

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Hi there, 👋

Happy New Year! - and welcome to our first edition for 2021.

We hope you enjoyed your holidays and are ready for an exciting and productive year.

It's taken us a few days to get back into the flow, but we're ready to hit your inbox again every Wednesday.

We've dedicated this issue to "entrepreneurship" and the many facets of being an entrepreneur. We're all on a continual journey to cultivate our skills, to look out for our team, and to learn how to improve our businesses.

You'll find several articles on the theme of entrepreneurship below, as well as links to the great new tools we found. 

If you enjoy our "Startup Snacks" section, then scroll to the end for a revamped summary of good reads.

As always, thanks for being here, and remember to drop us a comment on the web version of this letter.


🧰 Tools

📄 Export Google Docs Into WordPress

If you use Google Docs to create your content and run your site on WordPress, then you'll love this one-click transfer tool.

Wordable lets you write normally, with all the usual headings, images, and tables, etc.

But, instead of spending hours copying and pasting from Docs into WordPress, this tool instantly exports your document to a WordPress post or page.

To use Wordable just download the plugin. It comes at a price of $19 per month, but there's a free trial on offer. Connect one WordPress site and export 3 documents to see how it works - for free.

>> Take a look

🖋️ Write Better Emails

There's no excuse to put off writing your next email.

Lavender is a browser extension that helps you write better, more personalized, and more effective emails. It comes with a tool package that includes AI-driven writing analysis, sentiment check, and email scoring.

The Lavender score is particularly useful for salespeople and entrepreneurs because it rates how likely your email is to be opened, read, and replied to. 

It focuses on the four C's - Clarity, Conciseness, Correctness, and Consideration - to increase your chance of receiving a response.

Lavender Basic is free to use and operates with Gmail and Outlook 365.

>> Write better emails

🤯 Mind-Bendingly Useful

Here's how Descript describe their product:

Descript is a collaborative audio/video editor that works like a doc. It includes transcription, a screen recorder, publishing, full multitrack editing, and some mind-bendingly useful AI tools.

This is for anyone who produces video or a podcast. Descript comes with video editing, overdubbing, and transcription features. It even lets you create shareable pages for your audio or video.

There are numerous uses for this tool so we suggest that you check it out.

Descript offer a free plan and all paid options come with a 7 day free trial.

>> Try it out

🦄 SEOs with Skin in the Game

Smash Digital - a growth agency, filled to the brim with unicorn images and SEO memes.

A team of SEOs with actual skin in the game, ranking their own portfolio of profitable businesses, and offering the exact same services to clients.

An agency with so much link juice you’ll need a mop and bucket to clean it all up. Check. Them. Out.

🎙️ Podcast

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In this Evergreen Profits podcast, a digital and email marketing expert explains why his emails get an incredible 87% open rate.

George Bryant maps out the systems and processes he uses which are usually shared only with his paying clients.

Bryant says:

Customer journey is the body and email is the blood that keeps the body going. 

Find out what he means by that and how to adopt his strategies to guarantee your email marketing success.

📚 Articles

🛣️ Street Smart Entrepreneurs

There is no substitute for experience.

You might have sound technical knowledge or attended business school, but there are a few realities to grasp before you dive into any opportunity.

Marty Zwillig even suggests that you join another startup or existing business to see how things really work.

To avoid failure, he outlines the 6 Lessons Most Entrepreneurs Only Learn On The Street.

Among them is "don’t under-estimate or ignore your competitors."

Zwillig says:

I want to hear how your offering stands out, and how you have a plan to stay ahead of the crowd. Having an innovative solution is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for starting and succeeding in business.

You’ll get 5 other valuable lessons in the article.

>> Be street smart

🤔 6 Traits That Make an Entrepreneur

Aside from their fame and success, what else do Elon Musk, Oprah, Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, and Kendra Scott, have in common?

All of these entrepreneurs:

1. Have a passion for connection

2. Are always prepared for whatever business challenges come their way

3. Trust their teams and delegate to fight burnout

4. Have innate self-discipline 

5. Are persistent and driven, and

6. Are unwavering in their creativity

If you develop these qualities, you could be the next stand-out entrepreneur of our time.

>> Read more

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💰 Why Entrepreneurs Should Earn a Passive Income

John Rampton is an entrepreneur, writer, full-time computer nerd, and founder of Due. In this post, he shares how he lost everything when Amazon shut down his first business.  

If he’d had a variety of income sources, then getting back on his feet would have been faster and less stressful. 

Having more than one source of income increases your chances of becoming a millionaire. Tom Curley, author of “Rich Habits” found that “65% of self-made millionaires had three streams of income.”

Rampton also discusses the 7 myths surrounding passive income. He quotes Lucas Miller who said:

Generating passive income isn’t as simple or straightforward as some of the world’s richest people can make it seem to be. Figuring out how to generate a steady flow of cash requires a fair amount of work.

There are many ways to create additional income and this article will encourage you to consider your options.

>> Diversify earnings

🎉 The Only New Year’s Resolution for Entrepreneurs

It’s 2021 and everybody is ready to tackle their resolutions for the year.  But, seriously, how many of these goals will you achieve?

Beth Newton takes a different approach by suggesting that you do not make a list of resolutions for the new year.  Instead, set intentions. 

She states:

Setting intentions allows you to align your goals with your mindset then refine those goals as you achieve them or evolve in a new direction, without losing your passion or drive.

These three intentions will set you up for success in 2021:

1. Cut out the crap – remove anything that does not move you forward.

2. Go public – make your goals visible and share them with the people you trust.

3. Make space for big ideas – move away from your work desk but not your work. Take a walk, do something creative or healthy.  You will find that these activities will lead you to achieve more than just business ideas.

Jumpstart your 2021 entrepreneurial spirit with great intentions.

>> Intentions or Resolutions?

❓ Do You Have What It Takes ❓

🥨 Startup Snacks 🥨

💠 Founder of the Opera Web Browser Explains How Bad Investors Can Destroy a Startup

It's important to choose your investors wisely, but no one tells you what makes a 'bad' investor. 

Jon von Tetzchner founded the Opera Web browser and he has first-hand experience of the downside associated with the wrong investors buying into a business.

At its peak, Opera was the most used web browser in the world. Unfortunately for Jon, some of his investors were so bad that they literally helped create the competitor that would go on to destroy his company.

💠 Partnership Perspectives

Staying with the above theme, business partnerships can enrich your organization and your life or ruin your business and drain your energy. 

What makes a good partnership? To find out, one writer surveyed a handful of entrepreneurs to glean their insights.

As one entrepreneur says:

There are going to be ups and downs, and sometimes when things are down they can really be down. To know that you are working with someone that “has your back” strengthens and bolsters you, makes you brave and makes it easier to overcome the inevitable challenges. Business is like a sport and a champion team will always beat a team of champions.

💠 6 New Year’s Resolutions for Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses at the End of a Very Tough Year

No one would dispute that 2020 was a tough year.

This Forbes article gives us 6 positive resolutions we can share as entrepreneurs. We recommend taking #4 to heart.

💠 The Best of 2020: Entrepreneur Staff Picks

We're cheating a bit here because this article is not a single story.

This 'best of' roundup lists the favorite blog posts of Entreprenuer.com's editorial team.

You'll find articles with bizarre titles like: "MeUndies' Founder Went to Prison and Befriended a Bank Robber. It Was Great for Business."

And equally valuable posts with more mundane titles such as: “How to Keep a Virtual Audience Captivated.”

💠 13 Acquisitions Highlight Big Tech’s AI Talent Grab in 2020

Want to know which startups and tech were snapped up by Big Tech in 2020? 

It turns out that the Big 5 grabbed no fewer than 14 AI-related startups between them, along with customer relationship management (CRM) platforms and desktop automation tools.

It's an impressive list, with one completed deal valued at over a billion dollars. That's a heap of zeros...

👋 The Awkward End Bit

How did we do this week?

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Your suggestions and comments are welcome. Go to the web version of this letter to have your say!