AskPat 550 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 550, that's 550, of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today. As always, I'm here to help you by answering your online business questions five days a week.
All right, here's today's question from Harsh:
Harsh: Hey, Pat. This is Harsh from FireYourMentor.com. So, my question is, is it hard for a solopreneur to sell his or her business? Because for an entrepreneur, it might be easier as he has a company, he has a startup, he has a team. For a solopreneur who has a podcast, or maybe he has a few courses, is it hard for him to sell his business? I'll appreciate if you could answer and … big fan. Take care, man. Bye, Pat.
Pat Flynn: Hey, Harsh. What's up? Thank you so much for the question today. I appreciate you and your support. To answer your question, I think we have to first define what a solopreneur is, and an entrepreneur. You kind of made a distinction between both, but both are essentially the same. I feel like an entrepreneur is somebody who could be a solopreneur, and a solopreneur could be … or is essentially an entrepreneur.
What I think you mean is a personal brand. Can a personal brand … a person who is the face of the company, for example Smart Passive Income or … which I am the face of that brand—it's just become that over time, you know? Pat Flynn is very much connected to Smart Passive Income; you can't really disassociate the two. More prime examples are chrisducker.com, or amyporterfield.com. Can those businesses be sold? Possibly, but it's very hard.
These personal brands that are created around a certain personality, a certain voice, a certain style, they are very difficult to sell, and I don't know of any good examples of ones that have been sold. I do know of some people who have created … some personal brands who have created tools that were that were then sold, created software that was then sold, but the actual brand itself … You know, it's obvious why it would be difficult; it's because that person is tied to that brand. And to sell that off, it's gonna be hard to convince somebody that it's going to continue to run the way it has been, or work the way it has been working, without that person there.
Now, there are solopreneurs who have a business and they're working on it on their own, but they are not the face of the brand. They are the CEO of their company, and they have built a business in the way that is more easily sellable. And that is without actually their personality and their self directly tied to that brand. If you can create a business in a way that could be handed off … and you have to really think about this, can I actually have somebody else do the same work that I do? If that's possible, then yes, it could totally be sellable, and that has been done many times in the past before. Even people who have created just it on their own and not even another team. Now when you do have that team available and you do have some more systems in place, it does become a little bit more attractive to somebody, because there's stuff that they can just walk into and it's already working and they don't have to come into it cold. So in that sense, it's a little bit more attractive, like I said.
But again, I just wanted to make the distinction between solopreneur and entrepreneur. To me, they are one and the same, although I feel like every solopreneur should build out a team. That's kind of when you make the mindset shift of just, kind of, scrappy entrepreneur to, really, CEO of your own company. And when you treat a company in that way, it becomes more sellable, if that is actually your plan. But if you were a personal brand, if there is a personality tied to you and your business, it's a little bit more difficult to sell that business off.
Now, people … That doesn't necessarily mean you have to be completely behind the scenes, though. There are businesses where we know who the CEO is and we can see that company, but it can continue to work if somebody were to replace them for example. A good example would be facebook.com … I mean this is just one that pops into my mind … We all know Mark Zuckerberg is the CEO and founder … co-founder of Facebook. And if he were to go away, I mean, Facebook would still be Facebook, right? Because it is a software, it's an application, web app … mobile app that does what it needs to do, and he's not even really attached to it. We're not actually necessarily having access to him, for example. Although, he has given access to people every once in a while, but that's a different topic.
Anyway, Harsh, I hope that answers your question, and I wish you all the best of luck. If you plan on selling something off in the future, good luck to you. Follow up with me, let me know how it goes. And of course, as always, because your question was featured here on AskPat, I want to send you an AskPat T-shirt free of charge. You'll hear from my assistant, Jessica, in the next couple weeks or so. We're gonna collect your information, boom, send it over your way, no matter where in the world you're at.
And for everybody else, if you have a question that you'd like potentially featured here on the show, just head on over to askpat.com, you can ask right there on that page and … Yeah, guys, I appreciate you so much, and as always, I love to end with a quote, and today's quote comes from Andy Warhol. That is not true, that was the last quote from last week. Sorry, I'm reading my spreadsheet wrong. This is real life here, guys. I'm not changing these mistakes here, 'cause these come in every once in a while, and you just gotta keep going. Today's quote is actually from Tony Hsieh, the CEO and Founder of Zappos, and he says, “For me, the most fun is change or growth. There are definitely elements of both that I like. Launching a business is kind of like a motorboat: It can go very quickly and turn fast.”
Cheers, take care, and I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat. Thanks, guys.