Dreaming of Starting Your Own Biz in 2019? Start Here

Tis the season for year-end reflections and year-ahead resolutions.

In that vein, I’m making a shameful, Black Friday plug for Niche Down, the book I co-authored earlier this year for legendary marketing guru and podcast conversationalist, Christopher Lochhead.

I know I’m biased, but if you’re thinking of starting your own business, this modest tome is meant to kickstart ideas. Our top-level philosophy: don’t try to compete on someone else’s terms. Look inside, find your “different” and tell the world.

Don’t buy this book if you’re looking for a step-to-step “how to” but we do offer some specific ideas for marketing tactics. BUT we do offer some vivid examples. One of my favorites is John’s Crazy Socks, which is just about as “niche” as you get. Plus, I’m a sucker for feel-good stories. How you can resist the tale of a father who helps his child with Down syndrome realize his business dream? I’d love to hear about more entrepreneurs who you think embody this philosophy: I bet it will be easier than you think. I can’t necessarily write about them — but if the example has something to do with fighting climate change — I’m much more likely to listen.

The process of writing this book forced some serious soul-searching. Throughout my career, I haven’t paused all that often to set goals. That’s not exactly something I’m proud of. My bad.

But one thing I’m confident that I’ve always done is stood behind my convictions, something that hasn’t always rubbed everyone in my path the right way. As someone with a “pleaser” personality, it is difficult for me to cope with the idea that not everyone likes what I have to say. I like being liked! But instead of apologizing for it, I’m embracing the fact that this makes me, well, me. I’m still working on the apology thing. I say “I’m sorry” far too often. One of my resolutions for 2019 is to say it only when it really counts.

What’s on my Christmas wish list? The hope that at least some small percentage of would-be entrepreneurs benefits from reaching Niche Down. What are you waiting for?

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Author: Heather Clancy

Heather's articles have appeared in Entrepreneur, Fortune, The International Herald Tribune and The New York Times. She is a senior writer for GreenBiz.com, and the editor of FORTUNE Data Sheet, a daily dose of enterprise technology news.