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Know When to Quit, Pivot or Persevere (FS017)

We all face what Eric Ries calls the hardest part of any startup: deciding whether to quit, pivot or persevere. Why is it the hardest part? Because most of us don’t know what the hell to do!

In this conversation we walk you through our own experiences with pivots, quits and perseverance.

By the end you’ll be setup with 3 tactics to help you know what the right decision is for your business and when to make it.

You’ll also get a surprise blogging pro tip from Corbett and an answer to a listener question about free vs paid stuff online. Enjoy!

Listen to the episode:

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We’d love to include your business and question in the show. Let us know what you’re struggling with.


Show Notes

How Scott Dinsmore Re-Launched his Blog and Doubled His Readership“Sometimes you have a website that just isn’t going exactly where you want it to or is growing at a sluggish pace.”

The Dip by Seth Godin“Winners quit fast, quit often, and quit without guilt—until they commit to beating the right Dip for the right reasons. In fact, winners seek out the Dip. They realize that the bigger the barrier, the bigger the reward for getting past it.”

Rick Perry’s list botching — let he who’s really nailed their presidential debate throw the first stone.

How The Wrong Metric Sinks Your Business (& How The Right One Saves It) (FS011) — Think Traffic“What if you built a website with a ton of traffic only to realize it could never end up supporting you?”

Good Life Project: Seth Godin On Books, Business And Life – YouTube — around 16:50 it get’s into the stuff Caleb talks about. The whole interview is excellent.

Chain Smoking Your Projects — great insight here from Austin Kleon. More from him on this topic here.

Freakonomics » The Upside of Quitting — a stellar exploration of quitting through the lens of illuminating situations and rigorous economics.

Shaq’s Kazaam and Jordan’s Space Jam are two great examples of a pivot. Or, was this actually a way to quit? naw, you don’t think you’d call this perseverance would you?

Shittin’ in tall cotton“When you have to relieve yourself outdoors, nothing makes better toilet paper than a few cotton bolls… The implied meaning is that things are going well for you, or that you have joined a group of elite folks.” .

Ron Conway is an angel investing superstar. Here’s some data he collected from 500+ startups. It’s not gold standard research, but he found a fail rate of 40%, and entrepreneurs are 20% more likely to succeed on their second venture. Again, small sample size and highly culled (to be speaking with Ron), but interesting stuff regardless.

Gary Vaynerchuk VideosCorbett’s interview, Caleb’s interview, his Web 2.0 talk on this page is phenomenal, and A rant from the heart, hip and head video (this is where he talks underestimating DNA). Again, I’m not proud of enjoying him so much recently, but I can’t fight it. The dude’s great.

Build a Better Blog in 31 Days — this is the book Corbett mentions in his blogging tip.

Successful Entrepreneurs Focus Better and Quit More Often — Think Traffic“This leads to one of the biggest mistakes that entrepreneurs make: before too long they are overwhelmed by how many projects they have going at once.”

big yellow taxi – Joni Mitchell in concert 1970 – YouTube. And if you really want a proficient jam session, check out this crew.


Closing Thought:

“Everything you say ‘yes’ to brings down the quality of every other ‘yes’ in your life.”


The Top 10 Mistakes in Online Business

Every week we talk with entrepreneurs. We talk about what’s working and what isn’t. We talk about successes and failures. We spend time with complete newbies, seasoned veterans, and everything in between.

One topic that comes up over and over again with both groups is mistakes made in starting businesses. Newbies love to learn about mistakes so they can avoid them. Veterans love to talk about what they wish they had known when starting out.

These conversations have been fascinating, so we compiled a list of the 10 mistakes we hear most often into a nifty lil' guide.

Download the guide

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