When you’re researching, there are certain rocks you must flip over to ensure a positive result for your project. You don’t want to waste time or money reading articles or buying equipment that aren’t immediately useful to you. So here are 4 of my top tips for researching for your project —no matter if it’s a business, social media content or personal goals.
Keep Your Options Open
When researching, you need to look for the most expensive way to execute your plans, the cheapest way, and a combination of the two. Learning how to execute your vision in the cheapest way possible will save you a ton of money, and allow you to make mistakes and learn your way around the cheap equipment/resources first. This way, you will be able to work up to more expensive equipment and know how to use them to their fullest potential.
Knowing the most expensive way to execute your vision will show you what the professionals in your field of interest use to produce their work, and will give you something to work toward. And knowing how you can combine the two will allow you to know how you can introduce high-level equipment and techniques into your work as a beginner, which will set you apart from your competition.
So for example, if you’re starting YouTube, everyone knows if you have a smartphone, the cheapest option for recording and editing is to use the camera on your phone and a free editing app, like iMovie for IPhone and PicsArt for Android. The cheapest option for lighting is the sun coming in from your window, and, if you really don’t have any money to buy supplies for content, you can start by making content that is of no cost to you. So you can film your reactions or opinions to current topics, rate pieces of art you saw on Instagram, or talk about celebrity news and/or their fashion.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, you can buy a $3,000 dollar vlog camera, $400 worth of studio lighting, $500 dollars worth of makeup or clothes or hair products to review, a brand new laptop for editing which could cost you anywhere between $1,300 and $2,000, a backdrop, a tripod and a desk to do all your recording.
My recommendation, if you have the budget, is to find a way to intersect these two to give you a head start on being a content creator, and I advise to use this mindset toward any and every project you have.
Know What You’ll Need to Produce Quality Content/Products
Yes. Quality over quantity matters always. You don’t want to put out something of low quality for the sake of having just anything out in the world. Remember, you’re building your brand, your name is on your work. So make it good.
With that said, research what is essential to making your project quality, then refer to the first tip to see how you can do it in cheapest and most expensive ways so you can combine the two.
So if you want to start a business, the legal and sustainable way, is to start researching your state’s business laws and how you can register to legally operate as a business in your state. Then you want to look into trademarking your business’s logo and name, and, one of the most important parts of running a business, advertising. You also want to look up courses people have created about starting a business, I bought my courses from … They offer so many classes on building your brand, your business and how to be successful, and it’s all women!
I’ll always recommend doing these things -- starting a business, creating an event, writing a book, making a website or any project -- the right way instead of the fast way. It’s all about playing the long game here, especially if you want to start your brand with a strong foundation.
Ask For Help
If you know people who have done what you’re trying to do, ASK FOR HELP.
Everyone who is successful in their field has been helped or supported by someone who came before them. The person you ask doesn’t even have to be an expert; if you don’t know how to write a professional email, ask for help. If you don’t know how to do legal paperwork, ask for help. If you don’t know how to edit videos, ask for help.
YouTube videos are great for learning new things, but sometimes a physical person giving you guidance is better, especially when they have years of experience in the field. This also gives you a new person in your network because you can build a relationship with them and ask them for help again in the future.
Know Your Competition
It’s essential to know the other people in your field. How are they advertising? Who is their customer base? How do they produce the work they do? This is important so you can have an idea of how you can make content that is different from theirs while simultaneously learning how you can be as successful as they are.
Competition doesn’t have to be something you should avoid; it makes you better and learn how to be more creative. If you’re smart, you can make friends with your competition and collaborate with them so you can help promote each other’s products.
You’re going to make mistakes. It doesn’t matter how many courses you take, or how much money you spend on equipment, or how much help you get from elders. You’re a beginner and with any journey, project or the like, shortcomings are going to happen. So be kind to yourself and remember as long as you don’t quit, you’re still a winner!
Competition is important, but it’s not everything. Remember, you are your own competition and no one can replicate the insights, creativity and originality that you have. So focus more on what you’re doing and how you can better yourself, and less on what others in your field are doing.
Love and Light,