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Scaling up Your Business: How NOT to Paint Yourself into a Corner

Aug 21, 2007
You must plan ahead for growth that is scalable. If it's too late, and you've created a monster that can only grow by eating you alive, at least you have the comfort of knowing you did it yourself.

Chances are, however, that there's a way to move the time consuming chores of your business off of your desk and onto someone else's. Better still is creating a business model that is scalable in the first place: designed to grow larger without requiring more input from the owner.

Imagine a self-contained, automated business that takes very little time every month to maintain. Now imagine creating a village of these businesses, which can grow indefinitely large. The key here is making the day to day operations run on autopilot, without demanding attention from the owner.

The force behind the autopilot can be employees, remote assistants or computer automation. Automation is probably the best choice - scripts and programs don't take vacations or take off from work because their cat is having an existential crisis.

The type and method of doing business will determine how much input it will require from you. A "vanity" site that contains frequent blog entries by you (and you alone) will not scale well.

A membership site that gets its content from the members themselves can be infinitely scalable. By creating multiple sites that pay recurring fees and have self-generated, valuable resources and information, you can grow as big as you can stand (or imagine). All it takes is finding the right model and duplicating it.

There are low-profile Web sites doing this right now, very profitably, in a few small niches. The total number of possible niches is so large that there is literally no competition for the rest of the marketplace.

By offering free classified advertising to sellers, and charging a monthly fee to buyers, just about any niche market can be "monetized" effectively. The trick is to locate motivated buyers who need direct contact with the principals who are doing the selling.

Another model that scales up well is brokering or arbitrage of products or services. Very inexpensive sources of writing, scripts, programming, graphics and the like are entering the market from Third World countries.

Because of a lack of credibility and bad word of mouth, many excellent but inexpensive sources of these assets are ignored or underused. If you have a flair for locating the best of these suppliers and represent them to the IM community, you can make substantial revenue with very little follow up effort.

The idea with all of these methods is to create a self-contained "hub" that has many spokes radiating out from it. Each one can be a modest source of revenue. Taken together, they can amount to millions of dollars a year for the owner that controls them. Control is the key. You don't need to be personally managing every step, chore and duty of these operations. Instead, you make them run automatically by designing them rightly from the start.

McDonald's restaurants appear to be a fast food business. In reality, McDonald's is an example of scalable real estate investment, self-funded by the sale of fast food. As long as each branch sells enough food to cover its operating costs and mortgage payments, it's profitable to the corporation.

Learn to think like this, outside of the box, when you begin planning your Virtual Real Estate Empire. You could find a business model that actually loses money on the front end, but makes you ridiculously rich from back end, recurring or residual revenue! It's all in how you set it up.
About the Author
Jo Han Mok is the author of the #1 international business bestseller, The E-Code.
He shares his amazing blueprint for creating million dollar internet businesses
at: http://www.InternetMillionaireBlueprints.com
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