Are you looking to start your own business? You’ve come to the right place.
A little more than three years ago I decided to start my own business from scratch. I had no idea what I was doing. That being said, I had already been managing this blog as my full-time job for five years prior, so I suppose my business sense was already under development when I launched my bakery.
You can read about how I started that business here.
How to start your own business
In the last few years I have opened a few different businesses. I find creating new ideas and planning how they will succeed to be incredibly thrilling. Nerdy, I know.
If you have a business idea you’d like to explore and need that final push of encouragement, these books are for you. They’re the books I read that helped me the most over the years, replacing an expensive MBA (Masters of Business) which I almost started… twice!
Read more of our business guides here.
Books to read to start your own business
Superfans by Pat Flynn
One thing I tell all my students in the Travel Blogging Master Course is that you’ve got to create an authentic connection with your audience right off the bat. Readers of blogs are customers too, and if you ever plan to take your audience from free information to buying products that you sell, that connection is important from the get-go.
Superfans is a great way to understand the power of your audience. This could be as a writer of a blog, book, business owner or really any form of audience/customer base. There’s much more power in 10 dedicated “fans” or customers than there is 1000 fans who don’t really listen to what you say.
This book offers a powerful understanding of how to build a loyal audience.
Purple Cow by Seth Godin
As one of the most popular marketing books of all time, Purple Cow should be required reading for anyone looking to start their own business. Godin argues the only way to break through the noise and clutter of today’s gloablised economies is to create something remarkable, unique and innovate – like a purple cow. Godin’s writing is extremely clear and concise, which has led him to become one of the most authoritative authors in entrepreneurship and marketing.
All Marketers are Liars
Another great book by Seth Godin (you’ll find a few here), is the highly celebrated All Marketers are Liars. It’s all about crafting a story and the power of spinning what you have to say in a way that connects with your audience. And guess what: it works!
Start with Why
I first heard about Simon Sinek a few years ago when I stumbled up on his “Start with Why” speech on the trending Ted Talks. It has since become one of the most watched talks on the platform, with millions of viewers tuning in to find out more about a really basic idea that has been explained in a straight-forward manner. His idea isn’t new or particularly groundbreaking, but the way Simon explains how to find your WHY and the importance in getting there sooner rather than later, is really important for anyone starting out in business.
Tribes: We need you to lead us
Seth Godin has written a lot of great marketing books and sort of sets the benchmark for marketing in the entrepreneurial space. “Tribes” looks at the importance of becoming a leader in whatever you are passionate about, to avoid the risk of becoming a “sheepwalker”. It is a great insight into what draws people to follow tribes and how to not just be a part of one, but to be involved.
This book teaches you when to quit and according to Entrepreneur.com, it ‘should be on every entrepreneur’s book list’. The book walks you through the beginning phase of a business or company, the initial excitement and the eventual decline. Be that in excitement, sales or creativity, there is an eventual decline on the horizon. This book teaches you when to quiet (unapologetically) and when to persevere.
With more than 1 million copies sold, Atomic Habits has a unique message that starts with small changes for big results. People often think that when they want to change their life, they have to make big changes. This book really challenges the status quo and urges you to think about small changes for lasting results.
The One Thing
For a simplified look at how to drive results, this is one of the best books to read if you want to start your own business. I loved this book because it dives into entrepreneurship one a personal self-help level. I really started to think of business as more than just business when I read this book.
The Personal MBA
I bought this book when I was considering starting my Masters of Business Administration. I was passing through Perth International Airport when I spotted it out of the corner of my eye. “It must be a sign!” I told myself and handed over a $20 note for the book. It turned out to be filled with invaluable advice you would learn in your MBA. By my calculations, I saved about $19,880. Winning!
The 1-page marketing plan
And last but not least, the simple and effective one page marketing plan. It is one thing to have an idea and another thing to act on it. But then how do your customers find you? You’ve launched your idea into the world, now what? A business is only as successful as its marketing plan. This book makes it unusually easy to understand marketing for beginners.
Over to you, what were the best books you read when you went to start your own business?