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In Honor of Ranking #6 in Wisconsin on the Inc. 5000: 6 Pieces of Advice for Fellow Startups
August 16, 2019 | Caitlin Reiff
Pop the champagne (or shotgun a White Claw – your call): we’ve made the 2019 Inc. 5000 list!
This week, Inc. magazine added us to their ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. We couldn’t be more thrilled, especially considering that some of the companies we admire most – Microsoft, Dell, LinkedIn, Zillow, and more – gained their first national exposure as honorees on the Inc. 5000 too.
Our Inc. 5000 Rankings
In our first year of eligibility, and with 3-year revenue growth of 774%, here’s where we ranked:
#571 Fastest-Growing Private Company (Overall)
#58 Fastest-Growing Private Company (Marketing & Advertising Category)
#6 Fastest-Growing Private Company (Overall)
#1 Fastest-Growing Private Company (Marketing & Advertising Category)
6 Pieces of Advice for Fellow Startups
In honor of ranking #6 ranking in Wisconsin, we asked our partners to reflect on what they’ve learned since launching The Digital Ring, and to share six pieces of advice for young businesses and fellow startups.
Here’s what they said.
#1: Hire people who are smarter than you.
In your first year (or two) of business, you might be a one, two, or three-man/woman show. You’ll need to stretch yourself, extending beyond your comfort zone and taking on projects and clients that challenge you. Do what you have to do in those first couple of years, but as soon as you can – find talent that fills gaps in your own knowledge and skill set. It’s the only way to grow and remain competitive.
#2: Don’t be afraid to f*ck up.
When we first launched The Digital Ring, we were really careful to avoid mistakes. And while that’s all well and good – mistakes are important in the growth and evolution process. Mistakes teach you lessons and help you design better processes.
#3: Embrace the pivot.
As an entrepreneur, you might have very defined aspirations for your fledgling business – maybe you’ve even developed a 5-year plan. But – don’t be afraid to pivot and take advantage of unexpected opportunities if it makes sense for your business. If you see a gap in the market that you can fill, even if it requires tweaking your original plan, consider it.
#4: Focus on the big picture.
It’s easy to get caught up in the minutiae of the day-to-day. Every now and then, take a step back to evaluate the whole, and to make sure you’re still moving in the right direction.
#5: Work on your business.
To grow a successful business, you need to do more than provide an excellent product or service. You also need to set aside time to work on your business. How can you become more efficient, more cost-effective, more impactful? How can you support, educate, and grow your team? Think of “internal work” as building a strong foundation. It’s necessary in order to grow.
#6: Good leaders give credit to their team.
We’ve worked at companies where success is attributed to leadership alone. That doesn’t make sense to us. A business is successful because of the hard work of everyone on the team.
We’re incredibly proud of what we’ve accomplished over the past 4+ years – and this is only the beginning. If you’d like to learn how we can help you grow your business, get in touch or check out our work to see how we’ve helped other businesses grow.