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5 common mistakes made by indie entrepreneurs


5 common mistakes made by indie entrepreneurs

by Dubravka (Dee) Manojlovic

Choosing the right career is never an easy task, and choosing the path of entrepreneurship is probably the most difficult one. It requires a lot of hard work, patience and sacrifice, but on the other hand is highly rewarding and fulfilling. No matter which type of business you are starting it is important to know that mistakes are integral part of it – some of them are part of a learning process, but others can leave a negative impact on your business. Here is what to avoid:

  1. Vague Brand and Customer Identity

Most common mistake entrepreneurs make when starting a brand is neglecting unique brand features and failing to identify a distinct customer profile. Forcing mediocre trendy attributes leads to brand identity being pulled into a market void where interests start fading.

Green beauty and indie brand market is experiencing exponential growth. Now is the time to set yourself apart from the competition. Thinking that your brand is different because you care for the environment, source ethically and use solely ingredients of botanical origin is slightly risky at the moment because this was a way to differentiate yourself from conventional beauty brands. What you need to be thinking now is how to set your business apart from others in the green beauty niche who build their business on exactly the same fundamentals.  Do a little benchmarking and you will discover too many similarities. So what do you think triggers a potential customer to buy your products?


Brand is the tool that associates needs with fulfillment in a way that resonates with the customer on a subconscious and emotional level. If you do not know who your target customers are it is going to be very difficult to create products that speak to them.

Let your brand identity come out of passion for your work and needs you want to fulfill, or an important issue you would like to address. Embody those in a striking design of colors and shapes and target the right customers based on their lifestyle, culture, interests and age. Know your demographics!

  1. Sharing INCONSISTENT messages and surfing on the hype wave

Now that you know who you are and what it is special about you, your company or your products, start communicating it. One of the main brand features is CONSISTENCY and the magical stick you are looking for is VALUE.

Each time before you decide to publish something, answer this first:

Is information I am sharing of any use and importance to the end customer and does it represent my brand statement and promises? If it is not and it doesn’t – don’t do it.

Many brands fail to have clear statements and therefore upload random hype contents without being aware that they are choosing the wrong people based on their following or sharing messages that have no value to the recipient. There is no need to hunt in the dark just because there is a hype going on. It shows and can easily hurt your image. Take your time instead and focus on quality.

  1. Assuming rather than analyzing

If you already have followers, do not be lazy and do a bit of research. Look at them as customers who behave in certain manners. Try to discover their likes, interests, cravings, other brands they identify with, hidden motifs, lifestyle, age, gender, family and financial status.

If having followers is not the case, research demographics around you and once you have the idea in place, start targeting your ideal customer.

“Ignorance is not a bliss.” (Unless your target market feels the same!)

  1. Vision, mission and strategy

Most often than not it happens that some business owners hire copywriters to act as copy-caters. In other words, asking a storyteller to tell not yours, but any generally acceptable likeable story that will serve as a mission and vision on their webpage.

Very important to remember is that having a true and unique mission and vision is more important for your business than it is for your customers. Mission and vision are tools to help you define the right strategy, based on which you will act upon. Strategy helps you to have clear sets of goals in a specific amount of time and defines ways of executing them. This way you can analyze what you have achieved in the set time period, and if you failed to, it will be easier to find out what went wrong and how to tackle similar issues in the future. On the contrary, what was done well might serve you again.

  1. Holding onto old patterns

The most successful companies are the ones prepared to make the necessary changes and respond to the needs of the market. Do not stick to one strategy forever. Identify gaps and find ways to fulfill them. Envision where you want to be and the steps required to get there. Revise this as often as possible. What no longer serves you, let it go.

“The ONLY CONSTANT in this life is CHANGE.”

Embrace it!

About the author:

Dubravka Dee Manojlovic

Phuket-based wellness lover. Writer. Tutor. Formulator. Business Adviser.

Connect on Linkedin.

Read Dubravka’s full bio here.