In case you missed it, we hosted author and columnist Gene Marks on Facebook Live to discuss all things small business financing. Thryv’s social media pro, Chandlor Wright, interviews Marks to get the latest tips on loan forgiveness, a second stimulus and overall business development.

Marks kicks off this chat by adjusting the small business mindset.

“I’ve learned that when you start up a business you have to invest capital,” he says. “And capital is not just money, but it’s time, as well.”

That goes for everyone in the business owner’s orbit: “I wish someone would have told me that before you go and start a business, you really need to be sure that everyone is all in — everyone that you’re affecting. And that you’ve got the time available.”

Set Up for Success

Starting a business can be a fanciful idea, but Marks cuts to the chase when it comes to actually doing the work … and making money.

“You don’t have to be in a sexy business … there’s 30 million small business owners, and the people that succeed the most are the ones that treat their business as an income-producing vehicle, something they can build value at and enjoy doing it and be challenged by it. But you don’t have to get all wrapped up in this romantic idea of running a business.”

In the COVID environment, Marks suggests focusing on keeping a tight grip on cash flow and overhead while investing in sales and marketing.

“We’re doubling down on sales and marketing,” he says. “If I’m spending anything, it’s on marketing. Invest in marketing technology; invest in sales and marketing people; and go after opportunities you may not have gone after before. You never know what could happen.”

Finding Financing

Marks explains that despite the COVID environment, financing is available for small businesses. He recommends business owners:

  • Inquire about an SBA 7 (a) loan, which is guaranteed by the government
  • Research reputable online lenders
  • Work with a professional, like a CPA or your local banker
  • Strive to save (or have available) 6 months worth of cash
  • Don’t apply for PPP loan forgiveness just yet — the rules are still changing

To hear these and many more tips and insights, watch the video below for the full interview.