Starting On Your Idea: Q & A w/ Carson Jones
We get so many questions from young and aspiring entrepreneurs that want to start a business, but they don’t know where to start. Every week we get comments like “if I only had ____ I could start my business” or “I just cant find the right product.” Recently, we came across an article called “How To Start: Going from idea to execution,” written by Entrepreneur Carson Jones. We reached out to Carson to ask a few follow up questions and he was nice enough to answer a few of them for us.
1.) Carson, we really liked this concept of getting people to “start” but what do you mean by that?
I think the biggest thing that holds people back from starting a business or new idea is that they are waiting for the perfect idea before they start something. In reality, if people would just start executing on their idea (whatever it is) they will learn so much along the way. For example, I was talking to a recent graduate that said he wanted to start a digital marketing agency and he was just waiting for his first client to come along. Meanwhile, he had no idea how to run a Facebook ad, didn’t know what Google search console was and had only built one simple Wordpress website. I explained to him that you have to start on an idea and be really bad at it before you can ever get good at it!
2.) Will you elaborate on that? What do you mean?
A: People are so afraid of what their friends will say, what their parents, colleagues or people will say if they fail at something, so they never start. I really think that’s the biggest thing that holds people back, and it held me back for a long time. Truth is, you must learn how to dribble before you start shooting off hand, reverse layups. In the article where I mentioned that the first thing you have to understand when starting a business, is that your first business will likely fail. Mine did! In fact, my first 5-7 ideas were complete failures that seemed like great ideas at the time. From each of those failures, I learned what worked, what didn’t work, what I enjoyed doing, what I hated and eventually led me to start 2 very successful businesses in the digital marketing space.
3.) What kind of advice would you give to somebody that wants to start a new business?
Patience and consistency! Patience is so important because we live in an instant gratification society where overnight success is constantly thrown at us via Instagram and the media. We are all so impatient. We want everything to come to us right away. It’s the reason the lottery exists and why I always lose $40 at the 50/50 raffles at hockey games! The opportunity to make it big overnight is the American dream. However, there really is no such thing as an overnight success. Even the yodeling kid, Mason Ramsey, spent years singing to empty stores in Walmart before he was discovered. The term overnight success only applies to your knowledge of that person. 99% of the time, that overnight success spent years plugging away at their craft before they were discovered. To use the Uber example, Uber spent years developing their tech, then spent nearly 2 years just in the San Francisco market before expanding. If you want to build something successful, it’s important to understand that it will take years of hard work.
4.) What advice would you give somebody that says “I want to start something but don’t know what to start?”
Follow your energy and passion. Let me explain! Based on my last answer, you must understand that it’s going to take a long time and you’re going to have to put effort in day after day and a lot of sweat equity before you can create something successful. For that reason, you better pick something you really enjoy doing or you will give up as soon as things get difficult. I see so many people chasing industries, they go from a social media expert, to a house flipper, to a crypto expert and end up chasing their tail and not really getting anywhere. Find out what you really enjoy doing and stick with it!
5.) Any advice for someone that’s trying to figure out what they enjoy doing?
Try everything! At one point in time, I had tried everything from selling watches online all the way to starting a roofing company (complete failure) and everything in between. You can’t be afraid to try different things, especially with the internet at your fingertips! We have the opportunity to learn and try so many different skills and industries and all of the knowledge/information is right in front of you. YouTube and Google are gold mines for anyone wanting to learn a new industry. You also can do it responsibly without quitting your day job. Learn skills and experiment with ideas in your free time (before and after work, weekends, etc). The only way you will ever find what you truly enjoy doing is to try out a lot of different things.
6.) Any last bits of advice you can share with our audience?
Once you find what you are passionate about and want to pursue, make yourself accountable! the first step to putting your idea into action. Self-awareness is key here because you have to know what will help you commit. For me, it’s verbalizing it to others or making a monetary investment. I know that if I tell others I’m going to do something, I automatically become more accountable. If you purchase that new domain name, invest in a training course or buy your first products to sell, you are committing by putting your own skin in the game. Decide for yourself what will keep you accountable to your idea and do it. If you need help with that accountability, I love helping people. Reach out to me on my website, or always tweet me @carsonjones1 (easiest way to reach me).