From coaches to trademarks, seven founders sat down with Jessica Abo to share the best investment they made before they started their business.

1. Sharri Harmel, Editor-in-Chief, Extraordinary Women Magazine

“The Extraordinary Women Magazine is a magazine focused on helping women create fantastic next chapters. The best investment I ever made was truly an investment in failure. Before I was ready, I launched courses, lives, Facebook groups, you name it, to learn more about my target audience. We learn by doing. Invest in failure.”

2. Roketa Johnson, CEO and Founder, Opulence

“Opulence connects entrepreneurs with vetted resources who are looking to launch, build or scale their business. One of the best investments that I made before launching was trademarking my brand. Your brand reputation is your most valuable asset. You’ll want to make sure you protect it.”

3. Emily Cisek, CEO, The Postage

“The Postage is a digital estate and legacy planning platform. The best investment I made in The Postage before we got started is really two things: team and technology. Because with those two things, no matter what pivot, growth or how quickly you need to scale, you are going to be able to handle it no matter what with the right team and the right technology.”

4. Melanie Espeland, Founder and Executive Coach, Espelad Enterprises

“Espelad Enterprises works with professionals on executive coaching and executive life coaching. My best advice before you launch your company is to do work on yourself. Do your due diligence on your why — why you’re starting this business. This will help you be connected with what you’re doing and help others connect with you.”

5. Claire Spackman, Founder, Consumerhaus

“Consumerhaus is a curated online marketplace for over a hundred of the internet’s favorite consumer brands, ranging from food and beverage to health and wellness, to personal care and pets. The best investment I made before I launched was to cold email as many people as possible. You really never know where a cold email might lead, whether it’s an intro to an investor or a feature in a publication. I owe a lot of my small wins so far to not being afraid of sending strangers incredibly personalized emails.”

6. Michelle Yu, Founder and CEO, Aspire Talent

“Aspire Talent is a boutique HR consultancy focused on all things HR and people operations. One of the best investments that I made prior to launching my business was to get myself a coach. A lot of times, people have this misconception that they’ll save a lot of money trying to figure it out on their own when that’s not the case. Having a coach and knowing that there is someone who is a 100% dedicated to your success will get you to your business goals a lot faster.”

7. Kristina Bartold, CEO, The Social Snippet

“The Social Snippet is a social media and podcasting agency focused on helping entrepreneurs build their digital communities online. And if I could pick up the best thing I invested in before even getting started, it was definitely community. Joining free or low ticket communities and just pouring in value. Offer connection calls with anyone you can think of that you can meet and see how you can pour into their business. Don’t pitch. Just make connections and you’ll see how much that will pay you back.”

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