Last week a colleague noted “When you start working with other people, you spend a lot more time thinking about their paychecks than your own.”
AMEN TO THIS. Things were tight over at the Empire this month, and at a certain point I made the decision to pay my staff instead of myself this pay period. Oddly, it was WAY easier to do that than to even consider delaying everyone else’s checks.
For those who aren’t familiar with internet start-up talk, “bootstrapping” refers to a business that doesn’t take on any investment capital. As Wikipedia explains, “Such startups fund the development of their company through internal cash flow and are cautious with their expenses.”
The Offbeat Empire is a bootstrapped company. I started it with money out of my own pocket, and have never taken on any investment dollars or venture capital. This means that by necessity, the Empire always has to function in the black — simply put, the company has to be profitable, because there is no other money other than the money coming in.
For the most part, I love bootstrapping…but sometimes it’s hard, and the Offbeat Bride Tribe’s migration earlier this year was one of those times.
For me, the biggest challenge with monetizing has been finding legit, non-scammy tools. There’s a lot of shady, scammy stuff that goes down in the world of online advertising, and it’s hard to trust information you find online about any of them. I like to feel good about the businesses I partner with, so I figure it’d be worth sharing some of the tools I use that don’t feel shady to me.