DJ,Recording Artist,Author & Entrepreneur An Interview with
So you want to start a Business?
For the New Entrepreneur
Entrepreneurs Should ask themselves
Looking at the world of entrepreneurship from a different perspective
For the New Entrepreneur
By Lyndon Smith Page.2
Should ask Themselves Page.3
DJ, Recording Artist, Author & Entrepreneur An Interview with
Joel NR Powell Page.4
Message from the editor We would first like to thank you, the readers of Self Starter Magazine. Without your support, the vision would just be a vision and not a reality. We chose an entrepreneurial focus for the magazine because of a few influences in our lives who have chosen entrepreneurship as a way of earning a living. We have witnessed the struggles and successes of those individuals, and decided that their voices should be heard and their experiences should be shared. So our vision for Self Starter Magazine is to talk to entrepreneurs from all walks of life and have them share their experiences. Being an entrepreneur isn’t easy and sharing knowledge is one way to make it easier. Once again, we would like to thank you, the reader! This is the first edition of Self Starter and we hope our vision of independent earning will resonate with you. Credits Publisher: Lyndon Smith Artwork: Luminous Graphic Design (www.LuminousGraphicDesign.com) Editing/Proofing: Janine Clarke Special Thanks to: Joel NR Powell
A Moment for an Inspirational Thought “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom” How well do you know yourself? And what would you do to better yourself?
For the New Entrepreneur By Lyndon Smith
Whether you’re fresh out of school, feel constrained in the workforce, or have a business vision, congratulations for having decided to embark on the journey called entrepreneurship. Let me be the first to tell you… Entrepreneurship is not for everyone! Embarking on the journey of entrepreneurship is one of the most challenging, time consuming, frustrating, stressful, but rewarding and profitable decisions an individual can make. Entrepreneurship is a 24 hour job, therefore, the 9-to-5 punch in and punch out mentality does not work. Everything you earn now depends on you and how hard you work. This means that if you cannot sell your product or service, you may not be able to pay your bills or put food on the table.
Unfortunately, that level of consistency is not built overnight; it takes work combined with a lot of time. This is where having a TRUE passion for what you do factors in. The passion you have for your business will motivate you through tough times, and will elate you during the good times. Developing consistency will help to ensure that your efforts win more than they lose. All in all, work on building quality and consistency and your business will reflect your effort.
Tip #2 Marketing & Promotion Marketing and promotion are some of the biggest responsibilities an entrepreneur has. As an entrepreneur, getting noticed and developing a client base will consume most of your time. You will have to think outside of the box for people to notice you. Whether it’s the use of posters, business cards, banners, cold calling, newspaper ads, or even standing in the middle of an intersection holding a sign, anything that gets people talking about your business (positively) is what you want. Here are a few tips for promoting your new business.
Being an entrepreneur assigns you all of the responsibilities of your business. Tasks such as marketing, accounting, public relations, and tech support are skills you will cultivate as you evolve as business person. But remember dear entrepreneur –you can’t be the master of everything! Having good resources and people to assist you will help ease some of your growing pains. Remember to cherish your lifelines, you will Build an Effective Website certainly need them one day. Your website is the 24/7 face of your business, and its Tip #1 Consistency job is to convey your message to potential clients. Your website has to be the best possible representation of Consistency is the key to success!!! That applies to ev- your work. To create an effective website there are five erything, not just business but in day to day life. Con- things you should strive to achieve: sistency is the key to success! I know I repeated myself, but that is how important consistency is in the busi1. Clean design with excellent usability ness world. Creating consistency in your business is a 2. Consistent brand identity throughout the great way to build a reputation and a client base. Clientire site ents want a quality product or service, and your abil3. Ensure that you showcase the BEST of what ity to deliver that in a consistent manner can make or your business does break your business. If clients cannot count on your 4. Your site should make it easy for potential business’ quality and consistency two things happen; clients to contact you directly you will lose clients and they will not refer you. 5. Keep it current! First impressions count. If An example of time tested consistency is The Coca your website it outdated, think about what Cola Company. For 70 years they have produced the that tells customers about how serious you same product, using the same formula. The Coke forare about your business mula has become renowned, and the company logo is recognized globally. As a business owner The Coca Cola Company’s consistency is a business model to ...Continued on page 3 strive for.
Tip #3 Saying “NO”
Social media is a business essential that can’t be ignored. As an entrepreneur, social media is an excellent way to build a following, and it provides you with direct interaction with your client base. By posting photos, asking questions, and sharing current projects, social media entices your followers to respond or react. The responses or reactions are exactly what you want! This direct interaction will give insight as to what you’re doing well or what needs to be improved from your clients point of view. Remember new entrepreneurs, use social media to stay connected to your clients, and keep them talking!
The final tip is probably one of the most important, if not the most important: learning when to say no. Saying no is usually one of an entrepreneur’s biggest fears. WHY SAY NO!?!? Saying no might cost you a relationship and money, but in reality, not all potential business is good business and in time, you will learn to recognize that. So never be afraid to say no to a project, because accepting a project you should have turned down comes with an opportunity cost that may result in the loss of a greater opportunity. Therefore, learning to say “NO” means focusing on what is important to you and your business. Its really a matter of correctly valuing your time. When declining a job, always be honest. Explain why you can’t take the job – you won’t be able to meet the project deadline, the proposed compensation is not in line with your expectations, etc…. And remember that just because you’re declining the project, doesn’t mean you’re declining the relationship. Respectfully declining work and being open and honest demonstrates a level of maturity as a business owner.
Word of Mouth
Word of mouth is the most powerful form of advertising for an entrepreneur. As a new business owner, referrals will be an important source of income. Be it from family members, friends, or past clients recommendations, referrals are an effective way to show the reliability of your service, increase your client base, and of course make money. It is also very important to recognize the effort of those who refer you. Make sure As your business grows, consistency, marketing, and to thank them, be it through a phone call, a card, or the ability to say no will become the foundation of your by giving them a discount the next time they use your development as a business person. service. Showing that you appreciate their referral will help ensure they refer you again. Treat all your referrals like gold, because word of mouth spreads, whether good or bad.
Questions all entrepreneurs Should ask Themselves! Why do I want to Be an Entrepreneur?
It’s a good idea to define exactly why you want to start a business. The answer to this question will help you persevere through the chaotic times as an entrepreneur.
Is my product or service marketable?
Will people pay for your product or service??? Look around and do your research. Find what niche your business fits into, and remember your business in not set in stone! Tweaking and adjusting will be part of your business growth.
If I don’t know who do I call?
Whether you’re starting a business by yourself or you have a partner, it is always good to have a few lifelines. You won’t always have all the answers, but it is good to know people who can point you in the right direction.
How do I deal with failure? Failure is a big part of a startup business! While its important to focus on your successes, it is also crucial that you learn from your mistakes.
DJ, Recording Artist, Author & Entrepreneur An Interview with
Joel NR Powell
The Man: Joel NR Powell
The Business: NR Entertainment Inc.
SSM: Please introduce yourself? NR: I’m Joel NR Powell aka Ninja from Ninja Ryders Sound aka Da NR Superstar. I am a DJ, Recording Artist, Author, and Entrepreneur of NR Entertainment Inc.
SSM: What is the toughest part of being an entrepreneur and what made you choose this route? NR: Being an entrepreneur is not difficult once you love what you do. When you love it, everything else will eventually fall into its rightful place. I was born to do this. God has a higher calling for all his children and this is mine. I’ve been an entrepreneur my whole life; never once giving up and never once backing down. The toughest part is convincing the doubters who feel what you do isn’t “real work”, especially family, because some family members won’t respect your movement until they see you’re famous, or you’re making enough money to take care of them and yourself. That’s just the way it is. For me, I focus on doing God’s work and continuing my journey. Being a visible minority plays a huge role on being an entrepreneur. Because many of today’s youth don’t understand that you need money to make money and a bank isn’t going to give you a dime unless you have something they can take (a house, brand new car, etc). When I was 19 I went to a bank and tried to apply for a business loan and was turned down not because I didn’t have good credit but because I didn’t own anything they could use as collateral. That’s why a lot of young males will turn to other methods to gain capital from more organic methods such as “hustling” and whatnot.
SSM: What makes you different from other artists? NR: I grew up in a Caribbean household (Jamaican & Trinidadian) so, my 1st love of music was reggae. A lot of my musical knowledge came from reggae. People don’t realize that in order to really be great in hip hop, you have to understand that it started with reggae, so having reggae knowledge puts me ahead of many artists who simply don’t know the history. SSM: What/Who were your inspirations when you were growing up? NR: I’ve always believed in God, so I was inspired from a young age to go after my dreams. Psalm 27 is the source of my success daily. Growing up I was blessed with 5 Dads: Dad, Step-Dad, God-Father, and two of my Dad’s good friends. All of these positive male figures helped shape me into the man I am today. My mother always kept me in line as well, so it made me stay focused.
The Book: Black Empowerment & Minority Issues SSM: What was your inspiration for writing your book, Black Empowerment & Minority Issues? NR: Growing up in public housing is a blessing and a curse at the same time. On one side you get to meet and become friends with people of all nationalities, colors and creeds, which opens your mind to a higher state of knowledge. On the other side, you’re labelled because you live “here” you’re not going to amount to much. My book is designed to reassure youth and their families that no matter their current circumstances, they can improve their lives and achieve their dreams. SSM: What is your overall message and goal for the book? NR: The message is simple… EMPOWERMENT! The goal is to get as many copies out there as possible. I’ve already attained status as a bestselling author inside an independent bookstore so each day I am going to bring it to higher heights. I believe strongly that poverty should never be celebrated. A lot of people think it’s cool to be in a rough situation because when they look around many are struggling as well. I’m speaking from experience that it sucks to be on the bottom, whether it is financially, mentally, or physically, deprivation isn’t a good thing. A person told me that my book is the bible for the ghetto and I never realized how powerful the book was until so many youth came back and told me that it changed their lives when they read it. SSM: Where can we buy your book? NR: My book is fully self-published and independent so anywhere it is being sold I gave authorization. It can be purchased through my website www.JoelNRPowell. com, www.amazon.com and selected retail outlets.
SSM: What message do you have for entrepreneurs in the music industry and entrepreneurship overall? NR: Countless times, I’ve told people that entrepreneurship is something that not everyone can do. Entrepreneurship takes huge sacrifice, for most they think it’s like winning the lotto (instant success) and you’re good, but it’s far from that. I’ve spent my own money in the hopes of making a profit, but even when you have plans on top of plans it’s only God who can give you the increase. So if you don’t love it, don’t do it! That’s my 100% advice because not many can handle losing. The Music: “7 Issues” The EP SSM: Which artist(s) do you listen to in your home or car? NR: I often listen to the veterans of the music game N.W.A, Eazy-E, KRS One, Bone Thugs N Harmony, Ice-T, and MC Eiht. Other than that, I own a huge record collection so I play a lot of vinyl at home especially reggae…Bob Marley, Bunny Wailer, Tenor Saw, Shine head, Ninja Man, Super Cat… too many to list! SSM: How have these artists influenced your music? NR: I’ll tell you a secret, I learned stage presence and how to perform by watching Ninja Man perform. I would watch stage shows where he would just walk out on the stage and tear the roof off the place without saying a word. That would always blow me away. Ninja Man made me focus harder on stage presence and making music I could simply perform well.
SSM: How does your DJ background help your on stage performance? NR: I learned how to rock a crowd by starting my career as a DJ. It showed me how people truly react to music. The greatest joy of performing is knowing you have the crowd listening to what you’re saying and reacting to what you’re doing. I like to be very spontaneous and tell people stories sometimes. I get comedic depending on my vibe but with my background as a DJ I learned how to entertain.
In Conclusion SSM: Any final thoughts or announcements for our readers NR: Buy The Empowerment Series: book, film, soundtrack coming May 20th 2014. Get Black Empowerment & Minority Issues the book, Empowerment through awareness the documentary, and 7 Issues EP soundtrack. Purchase all three May 20th 2014. Log onto www.JoelNRPowell.com for more info.
SSM: What message do you promote in your music? NR: I focus my music on building awareness, and to empower people in a world laced with family issues, employment issues, health issues, and more. My music is like the news, but based on pure fact, not fiction. I’m Follow Joel NR Powell: not going to put out something I don’t believe in be- Website: www.JoelNRPowell.com cause I speak from my heart. Facebook: NR Entertainment Inc, Joel NR Powell Twitter: @JoelNRPowell
SSM: What is your favorite music industry moment? Youtube: Joel NR Powell NR: When I opened for Tech N9ne and he bought a E-mail: email@example.com copy of my book. I’m a fan of his indie movement and when we met and I showed him the book he was truly interested in my work. I signed it for him and he offered me some strong advice. Really cool person.
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For more information visit www.SelfstarterMag.com or E-mail SelfStarterMag@gmail.com