What YouTube Celebrities Can Teach You About Marketing Your Startup

Thursday, June 1st, 2017

At the time of writing, Felix Kjellberg – alias PewDiePie – is the most popular YouTube celebrity in the world. The 27-year-old content creator has tens of of millions of fans, and though he remains modest (and rather quiet) about his income, it’s likely somewhere in the millions. Continue reading “What YouTube Celebrities Can Teach You About Marketing Your Startup”

Introducing the Startup Wizard

Wednesday, January 18th, 2017

MyNewCompany.com would like to introduce our newest exclusive product: The Startup Wizard. The Startup Wizard is like a startup checklist on steroids and is personalized to your specific business entity type and state.

We used to provide our clients with a state-specific checklist in PDF format that shows them all of the “post-formation” tasks they need to complete after we formed their company. This includes tasks like opening a bank account, getting a business license or setting up your accounting system. With the Startup Wizard, we now have a custom web-based checklist that is personalized for your state and entity type.

What this means is that, for example, if you needed to file an Initial List for your Nevada Corporation, our checklist would provide the specific instructions to do that as well as many other important startup tasks.

 

Features:

  • Included FREE with every business formation.
  • Covers steps such as getting a business license or resale permit.
  • Simple instructions for holding an Organizational Meeting, adopting Bylaws or Operating Agreements and Issuing Stock or Member Certificates.
  • Progress Tracking (0 to 100%) as you complete each step.
  • Weekly Automatic Email Reminder with attached PDF summary of remaining steps. Unsubscribe anytime.
  • Downloadable as a PDF file if you prefer to print or view/save elsewhere.
  • Multiple companies? You get a Startup Wizard for each one so you can track them separately.

Benefits:

  • Don’t spend hours learning these critical steps, let the Startup Wizard guide you step-by-step.
  • Save hundreds of dollars in time saved by having a simple checklist of things other services would charge you for.
  • Properly set-up your new company without having to learn complex legal forms or procedures.
  • Prevent costly mistakes or errors in the set-up of your company that could cause problems in the future (perhaps allowing lawyers to pierce your “Corporate Veil” and expose personal assets).
  • If you utilize our service for your clients you can give them personalized guidance using the Startup Wizard.
  • Peace of mind that you’ve set-up your company properly the first time.

We hope you like the Startup Wizard and let us know any feedback – thanks!

Five Tips To Re-Take Control Of Your Work Schedule

Wednesday, January 4th, 2017

It’s all too easy to let your job control you. But that’s also a surefire way to burn out. Here’s how you can regain control of your work – and your life.  

I’m no stranger to late nights and a lack of sleep. I’m also no stranger to feeling like a helpless passenger on the ship that is my business, careening without control from project to meeting to client. And that’s no way to live.

Remember – this is your business. It serves you, not the other way around. Today, I’d like to talk about how I took my life back from the overwhelming workload that comes with being an entrepreneur – and how you can do the same.

It all starts with proper time management.

Start Each Day By Taking Inventory

Slot off a half hour at the beginning of every day and take stock of what tasks you need to finish. Is there a looming deadline for a particular project or a meeting with an important client? Is an employee or colleague waiting on you to finish a task before they can do their own job?

Assign a priority level to each task, and tackle them in order of most to least important.

Learn Your Body Clock

Some people are night owls, and do their best work once the sun goes down. Other people love putting their nose to the grindstone first thing in the morning, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. You need to figure out which you are – figure out when you’re most efficient, and leave your important work to those timeframes.

Avoid Distraction

While I’m definitely an advocate of using a unified inbox like Hub+, I’m also an advocate of keeping your attention on one task at a time. Unless something pressing or urgent comes up, avoid the compulsion to multitask or switch from one project to another. Do one thing at a time – don’t check your email every few minutes, don’t constantly answer the phone, and don’t let yourself get sidetracked by banter.

Look At Your Calendar As A Flexible Entity

Now, there’s one exception to the previous rule. Sometimes, you’ll need to re-prioritize. A workplace emergency will come up, or a project will fall onto your plate that’s more urgent than whatever you happen to be working on at the time. In that case, you should learn to be flexible – look at your calendar not as something that’s set in stone, but as a guideline to keep you on-track with what you need to be doing. And again, think about using some sort of organizational tool.

Learn To Say “No.”

My last piece of advice probably flies right in the face of everything you’ve ever learned as an entrepreneur. You need to learn to tell people ‘no.’ To understand when you don’t have enough bandwidth for a particular task, or when you don’t have the energy for a project.

Every time you evaluate a new task or meeting, consider what else you could do with the time you might spend – if there’s something else you could be doing that’s more important or critical, it’s alright to refuse.

Closing Thoughts

As an entrepreneur, your schedule shouldn’t rule you – you should control your schedule. Letting yourself be dragged along by your business like a runaway freight train is a surefire path towards burnout. And trust me, that’s a road you don’t want to go down.

The Biggest Challenge No One Tells You About Running A Startup

Wednesday, December 28th, 2016

The Biggest Challenge No One Tells You About Running A Startup

Being an entrepreneur is immensely rewarding, but also challenging. And the toughest thing about the job is something you might have to learn the hard way.

It’s five in the morning, and I’ve just pulled my second consecutive all-nighter. As I reach for my cup of coffee – I’ve lost count of how many I’ve drank at this point – my mind wanders to how much there is yet to do. A part of me rages against the work I’m doing.

I should go to the gym, it screams. I should be getting more sleep, eating food that actually requires some preparation, and spending more time with my family. Unsuccessfully stifling a yawn, I suppress that voice.

I have deadlines to meet, after all. I have clients waiting on the work I’m to deliver, and a reputation to uphold. What I fail to realize is that I’m moving at breakneck speed down the path to burnout.

Does any of what I’ve written above sound particularly familiar to you? If you’re a new entrepreneur, it probably does.  We live in a culture where working upwards of sixty hours a week is viewed as a badge of honor.

“Look at how hard they’re working,” people crow. “They must really have their life together.”

What they don’t see is all the cracks beneath the surface. The jilted lovers and abandoned friends. The health problems and crushing anxiety.

Don’t get me wrong – running a startup is a difficult job. Most people aren’t really equipped to do it. Late nights and long hours are, to some extent, inevitable.

At the same time, I’ve seen too many people conflate hard work alone with success. If you’ve got a good work ethic, that’s great. Hold onto it.

At the same time, it’s important that you learn to prioritize. As the old cliche goes, you need to learn how to work smart instead of just working hard. And that’s the thing that a lot of newer startup owners fail to see; the reason so many entrepreneurs succumb to burnout.

They’re perpetually overwhelmed. They’re running on empty, and throwing themselves at busywork without any real concept of what it’ll accomplish. They’re slaving away, even though they’re aware that they aren’t built for this – no one is.

Here’s what they – and what you – should do instead:

 

  • Learn to walk away. If you’ve spent an hour staring at the screen with no idea how to solve a problem, get up and go for a walk. Take a bath. Ride your bike. Play with your pets or kids. Give your brain a chance to refresh itself and catch up, and you might be surprised at what you come up with.
  • Deal with distractions. Set a timer during breaks to ensure you get back to work right away. Avoid going on social media when you’re working. Organize your email, and get used to working offline every now and then.
  • Prioritize. You know exactly which tasks are higher on your priority list – complete those first, no matter what other stuff you’ve got on your plate. I’ve been guilty in the past of distracting myself with pointless busywork, ignoring the fact that I’ve a critically important job that I’m simply not finishing.
  • Work in chunks. Most people don’t work well when they’re simply slaving away for hours on end. Instead, try completing work in short bursts, doing one task at a time.
  • Recognize your own workflow tendencies. Everybody works a bit differently – figure out what’s most effective for you.

 

I get it. You have a tendency to get lost in your work – I do too. Just make sure you don’t end up so lost that you can’t find your way back to the real world afterwards. By learning to work a little smarter, you can steer yourself off the path of burnout, and towards greater success in the future.

Why You Shouldn’t Wait Until the Election to Start or Grow Your Business

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

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Something we’ve been hearing over and over recently from clients and potential clients alike goes something like this: “I’m going to wait until the election is over to see if I should start my business” or something similar. Some existing business owners have said similar things in regards to expanding their business, spending money on marketing or capital improvements, etc. Basically, they want to see what the political environment will be like before pulling the trigger on any big decisions.

While that seems like the prudent thing to do, let’s go over the reasons why that might not be the best strategy:

  1. Gridlock will be likely
  2. You’ll lose months of momentum and experimentation
  3. Your best competitors will not have such hesitations

1. Gridlock will be likely:

Hillary Clinton, should she win, will almost certainly be dealing with Republican majority in the House and maybe the Senate. Republicans only need one house to block any meaningful legislation. There’s also a lot of “bad blood” going around this election season so there’s yet another reason why the 2 parties are likely not to agree on much – in this case, gridlock of our government is a “feature, not a bug” so when American’s can’t agree, the government usually can’t either. Also, recent scandals (emails, Benghazi, etc.) may cause both parties to fight from day one.

Donald Trump, should he win, will also be dealing with a hostile congress, even if it is Republican majorities in both houses. He’s made many enemies in his own party, in particular, Paul Ryan who is the Speaker of the House. Trump getting much legislation through in this environment is unlikely. Also, the Democrats will be extremely angry at his tactics to secure the Presidency so they’ll likely be willing to block anything just to spite him.

2. You’ll lose months of momentum and experimentation

In the small business world, speed, momentum and being able to test your product, message, marketing and other things is critical. Speed is one of the main advantages of small business. If you wait around for months to even start a business or spend money on improving your business you’re likely to lose momentum to other competitors. Speaking of…

3. Your best competitors will not have such hesitations

Many have written about the vast fortunes that were created in recessions/depressions and challenging political environments. The lesson is that while their competitors were petrified to move or even downsizing, smart entrepreneurs were taking advantage of tough times to “buy low” (investments, property, etc.), expand their business, simplify and streamline their operations and keep moving forward. Recessions are usually a convenient excuse to not do anything.

Should I worry at all?

Sure, any political or economic environment is unpredictable by nature, but these worries are usually not justified for small businesses or startups. It’s large companies that have the most to lose. Small business is nimble, quick to adjust and ultimately much more suited to survive the worst. Focus on the positive, the opportunities that even bad environments can bring and you’re much more likely to thrive.

How to Evaluate Your Startup Idea (infographic)

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

Click for enlarged version!

hows-my-startup-idea

 

How to File a DBA

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

What is a DBA, exactly? Also known as “doing business as,” a “sole proprietorship” or a “fictitious name,” a DBA is a business that is not separate from its owner but has a different name than the business owner operates under. It is typically filed at the county level and might require a notarization. As an entity it’s easy to maintain but unlike the corporation or LLC, the owner is personally liable for the company and its debt.

One reason you might need to file a DBA is if you already have a corporation or LLC filed at the state level and you want to operate under a different name. Say your company name is Widgets LLC but you want to operate as Widgets & More. Then you will need to file a DBA name so that you can do business as Widgets & More.

If you’re starting your business as a sole proprietorship or partnership and you don’t want to incorporate or file an LLC, you will need a DBA so that you can “do business as” a name other than your own name. For instance, if your name is Jane Jones but you want to operate as JJ Ventures, filing a DBA will allow you to operate under the business name and also open a company bank account to accept payments for JJ Ventures.

A DBA is fairly simple to set up but one thing to remember is that every state and county have different requirements and you might be responsible for certain requirements such as a separate publishing in a newspaper that notifies the public of your intent to do business as a fictitious name.

We can help you file your DBA online today! Please note that if you’d like to file a DBA name for an existing corporation or LLC, you must have already formed your corporation or LLC (we do those too!).

Five Reasons We’re a Great LegalZoom Alternative

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

You’ve seen their commercials (featuring OJ Simpson’s attorney), but does that really mean LegalZoom is the best choice for starting your small business? Think of it this way: is the huge chain Italian restaurant franchise better than the tiny Italian bistro in your neighborhood–where every dish is prepared by real Italians–just because they advertise on television? We’ll let you decide, but we feel pretty confident that we can do better than the big guys when it comes to starting your company.

First of all, we understand that going into business for yourself can be complicated and even scary. We’re a real small business ourselves, so we’ve been there before. LegalZoom is a huge warehouse of legal services (Wills, Divorces, Bankruptcies, etc.) with only a fraction devoted to small business. Our incorporation and LLC formation service was designed specifically to meet the needs of small business owners.

Now let’s talk about cost. Our basic package starts at just $79 plus your state fee. That’s a lot easier on your wallet than their $149 basic package (as of this date of publication), and ours includes more. Do a side-by-side comparison of what you get with us versus what you get with LegalZoom. Running a business can be expensive. Starting a business doesn’t have to be.

We believe in honesty and won’t hit you with hidden fees or excessive charges, ever. For example, we charge only $45 to obtain your Federal tax ID. LegalZoom will charge you $79.

Personalized service is a benchmark of what we do. During business hours, you will always reach a live person or a quick call back (or response to your email), usually within ten minutes. Every member of our client services team can access your account and tell you the status of your order. We run a small, casual shop where everybody knows each other. LegalZoom, on the other hand, has more than six hundred employees.

Finally, just do some research: search for “Legalzoom complaints” on Google. Do the same for us and see the difference. As a LegalZoom alternative, we offer some of the lowest prices in the industry, fast turnaround and a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

Useful Post on 1099 Forms

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Small Business Tends has a useful post up on How and When to Prepare 1099 Forms for Independent Workers.

Our page on Hiring Employees & Processing Payroll is also a great resource for small business owners.

Starting a US Company as a Non-Citizen

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

One of the most common questions that we get at MyNewCompany.com is what is involved in starting a US company as a non-US citizen.  We’ve created a Checklist page on “How to Start a Company in the USA” that can be viewed here: http://www.mynewcompany.com/international.htm that lists all of the steps and procedures for starting a new US company as a non-citizen.