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Despite the hate they get in the media, millennials are actually extremely hard working and entrepreneurial. In fact, there’s a good chance you either are a millennial business owner or know of one.
A recent study from The Center for Generational Kinetics found some fascinating data about millennial business owners. They found that millennials don’t just want to be entrepreneurs, but rather a huge chunk of them already are entrepreneurs.
According to the study, 39 percent of the millennials surveyed have worked in a startup, 30 percent currently own a small business or startup and 26 percent are able to live off their business.
As for millennials who haven’t started their own businesses, about half of them want to and are even willing to quit their day job to do it. That being said, millennial business owners may need to learn some business chops in order to take their ventures to the next level. Below are some essential books every millennial business owner should read.
“Book Yourself Solid” by Michael Port
“Book Yourself Solid” is probably considered the book on sales for a service-based business. The book walks you through a very basic sales funnel, from getting in front of a prospect to getting them on the phone to closing a sale.
Speaking from my own experience, it was the information in this book that allowed me to quit my job. It was also the book that made the terms “sales funnel” and “systems” finally click in my mind.
In a day and age when it’s easy for a millennial business owner to feel overwhelmed by online marketing tactics, this book can help get back to basics. Just recently, I had my first five-figure launch for a digital product, and much of the sales were a result of the practices laid out in “Book Yourself Solid.”
“Dot Com Secrets” by Russell Brunsun
Just because going back to basics with sales is effective doesn’t mean you should totally neglect online marketing. In fact, neglecting the online portion of your business could mean you’re leaving a lot of money on the table.
For a straightforward read on how online sales funnels work, check out Russell Brunsun’s “Dot Com Secrets.” In the book, he explains how funnels work and shares some of his own strategies for effective sales. Strategies include emailing your list every day, upsells and having different points of contact for digital products.
After implementing just half of what Brunsun teaches in this book, I immediately saw an increase in sales for digital products. I also saw increased engagement from my community.
“Expert Secrets” by Russell Brunsun
It’s worth mentioning Brunsun’s most recent book, “Expert Secrets,” which is also worth a read. Like his first book, it’s very straightforward, with practical steps a millennial business owner can implement right away.
This one dives into how to position yourself as an industry leader and how that works in the online space. In a time when everyone is trying to build a brand online, this book really shows you how to stand out in what seems like an overcrowded marketplace.
For example, Brunsun talks about how to carve out a mini-niche within a niche. An example of what that may look like is a business coach who specializes in Facebook Ads. Their overall niche may seem saturated, but their particular specialty is where they can carve out space for themselves.
He also lays out some of the reasons why customers and clients find certain leaders attractive based on common sense marketing principles. All of this is done with the intention of teaching the reader how to become a leader in his or her own right.
“Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill
Having success in business has just as much to do with your mindset as it does with your skillset. In fact, one can argue that your mindset is what really makes the difference. You can have all the required skills in the world, but if you don’t believe you can make money, you won’t.
Enter the self-help classic, “Think and Grow Rich,” by Napoleon Hill. In this book, Hill interviews some of the most successful businessmen of the 20th century to see how they think. From these interviews, Hill came up with 13 principles that can help anyone achieve success not just financially, but in any area of life.
“The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries
We can’t discuss startups and entrepreneurship without mentioning “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries.
What’s great about “The Lean Startup” is that Ries offers a scientific approach to building a business from the ground up. First, you start by asking the right questions. Then you come up with a viable product you can test. From there, startups can test their vision each step of the way until they bring a product or service to market.
Of course, this is the Cliff Notes version. Ries goes into excruciating detail about what to do each step of the way so new entrepreneurs don’t waste time or money on unnecessary things.
Part of being an entrepreneur is constantly learning in order to improve yourself and your business. Start with these books and watch how your business changes. What are your favorite business books? Leave some recommendations in the comments section below!