In the fourth edition of the Megaphone of Main Street report from SCORE, 68% of entrepreneurs say they are looking for full-time self-employment, as opposed to gig work.
Even though gig workers are now classified as contractors by the Department of Labor, the fact they need to always look for the next gig doesn’t sit well with most people. As the report from SCORE points out, full-time self-employment is what entrepreneurs want.
The report is focusing on startups or small businesses in their first year of operation. According to Bridget Weston, Acting CEO of SCORE, this is, “… because the state of new businesses is generally considered a significant indicator of economic health and innovation.”
In the emailed press release Weston goes on to say, “Data shows that the number of new businesses started has been steadily recovering following the 2008 recession; but, the employment created by these new businesses has not seen comparable rates of recovery. Our research suggests that challenges in finding the right target market, finding financing and hiring the right team could explain this gap.”
The data for the report comes from both qualitative and quantitative data directly from around 1,000 startup small business owners across the U.S.
This is part one of a three-part report. The first part is Finding Your Way, Finding Customers, part 2 is Finding Financing, and part 3 is Finding the Right Team.
On average new business owners have 11.5 years of experience in their industry. This is to say, entrepreneurs don’t start a business on a whim. Likewise, when entrepreneurs begin a new business, they do it with passion and experience.
Why do Entrepreneurs Start a Business?
More than third or 40.2% say it is because they are passionate for the product/service they provide, while 16% want the flexibility of self-employment. Another 15.1% start because they see a gap in the marketplace they want to fill, 14.6% is because of unemployment or underemployment at their previous job, and 13.9% want to be their own boss.
Where do Entrepreneurs Get Support?
Whether you are a seasoned veteran or just starting out, you need support in order to make your enterprise work. In the report, entrepreneurs gave several answers as to what kept them motivated/inspired when they hit a rough patch.
Not surprisingly, 66.2% say it is family/friends. If the support you need is for encouragement and a shoulder to lean on, it is good and well. However, if it requires some sort of expertise make sure they are qualified. Even if they are experts, you should always look for an outside/third party who can be completely objective. Try to get more than one, two or even three opinions on the matter so you can make the most informed decision.
Other support systems entrepreneurs use are business plan (43.1%), mentor (42.9%), personal coach/counseling (30.3%), networking groups (29.5%), how-to training (24.9%), specific advisor in industry/field (19.6%), trade associations (9.8%), and co-working spaces (6.0%).
Once the business is up and running, marketing becomes a critically important part of a business. And it is the next question in the SCORE report.
According to SCORE, tactics which directly engage with prospective customers are the most successful strategies.
In the report reaching out to personal/professional network has the highest success rate at 64.9%. This was followed by speaking at events (59.9%), formal networking groups (53.6%), social media (52.1%) and others.
You can read the report here and take a look at the SCORE infographic below.