What is a Dropshipping Mentor, and Why Is One Important for my Success in 2020?
Just as a team needs a coach, an entrepreneur needs a dropshipping mentor.
A study from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) stated that “Research has shown us that small businesses that receive mentoring early in the business’s development achieve higher revenues and increased business growth.”
Sure, you can barrel through the launch of your business, create your first Facebook Ad, and make your first sale, but what if it could be ten times easier?
What if you could move forward confidently without worry about making costly mistakes?
That’s not to say that launching and running your eCommerce business will automatically be a walk in the park; However, finding a reliable dropshipping mentor will undoubtedly make the process less stressful than it already will be.
Securing a dropshipping mentor at the start is one of the single best professional development choices you can make when opening an online store. Read further through this article to understand not only why but also how to get started finding one!
Dropshipping as a Business
Dropshipping is a method of order fulfillment. In simple terms, when you dropship, you create a business where you are selling a third party’s products. The drop shipper manages a storefront and sales but doesn’t have to keep products in stock. Instead, he relies on a third party to handle order fulfillment.
As a drop shipper, your revenue would be a percentage of the final sale prices by increasing the rates.
While it is typically recommended not to start your business with only dropshipping alone, that’s not to say it can’t be done!
But what is the key to running a successful dropshipping business?
The answer is a reliable dropshipping mentor to guide you on your journey.
What is a dropshipping mentor?
Similar to an eCommerce mentor, a dropshipping mentor is an individual who has experience in your same field and may even be considered an eCommerce expert.
Specifically, a dropshipping mentor has the unique experience of running a successful dropshipping business.
Dropshipping is a unique way to find success in the eCommerce industry, and for that, you want to find someone who understands the area thoroughly. Since you are dealing with a third party vendor and a different way of managing an online store, this also poses its challenges.
A dropshipping mentor has already put in their time and effort into the industry and has gained a significant knowledge of what worked and what didn’t.
It’s someone who will have that “been there, done that” kind of mindset. Ideally, your mentor can share their experiences and what they learned to help you know what to look out for along the way.
Instead of wasting time pouring through articles and how-to books, why not go directly to the source and talk to a real person who cares about your success for guidance?
A mentor is beneficial for professional development and crucial for the successful launch and management of your online business. Read further for why!
Why is a mentor important for business success?
Think of it as walking on a hiking trail. Previous hikers and others created and enforced that trail because it was the best way to move through the forest, mountains, or wherever you are hiking. This path is already free of obstacles leaving you with a clear path to your destination.
Now, seeing that trail as an option, you probably wouldn’t choose to veer off into the unknown with the possibility of having to bushwack through branches, avoid holes, and maybe even ending up on a cliff.
While it can be a fun adventure to veer off into uncharted territory every once in a while, as long as you know the path and stay close, you can always come back for stability.
Similar to this hiking trail, a dropshipping mentor can clear the path to business success. While it doesn’t mean you always have to follow it, it is one of the best resources to have for guidance along the way.
A dropshipping mentor can give general wisdom for looking at your business’s long-term goals and short-term advice, such as what you should avoid when using Facebook Ads or which website hosts they recommend.
A dropshipping mentor’s possibilities are endless and can ultimately mean the difference between success and failure for your new online store.
How to find a mentor
So hopefully, by this point, you are fully aware of the vast benefits of having a dropshipping mentor to guide you on your path to success.
Now the question is, how do you find one?
This process can look different for every individual. The two main methods are finding a mentor with an individual that you already have a relationship with or through cold outreach. We’ll examine both of these strategies below.
Look closer at friends and colleagues
If you have friends or colleagues excelling in the same field, sometimes all it takes is to send a quick message or phone call to ask about becoming your mentor. This closeness is what makes this method a more organic approach to finding a dropshipping mentor compared.
When you already have an established relationship with someone, you already have the connection and trust, both foundational for a mentorship.
That is why when you first decide that you want to find a dropshipping mentor, you should start within your closest circles and branch out.
Was there a past coworker that worked in the same field and motivated you daily?
Do you have a family member who started an online dropshipping business a few years ago still running successfully today?
Is there a friend who you, maybe even unknowingly, started modeling your business after theirs?
These are just a few scenarios that might stick out as potential dropshipping mentors. Since you have already established that connection, it will be more natural to find that mentor-mentee relationship.
If you have looked through your circles and still are coming up empty-handed, it may be time to do a bit of cold emailing instead.
Use cold outreach to discover a dropshipping mentor
If you don’t already have friends or colleagues in the dropshipping field, then the best strategy for finding a mentor is by cold outreach.
Sending a simple email can be a great way to ask for career advice and, hopefully, in the long run, find the magical dropshipping mentor you’ve been waiting for. Cold emails are for reaching out to professionals in your field that you admire or any other individual you haven’t already developed a relationship with.
The Shopify blog has a great example of a cold email template that you can use when first reaching out to a potential mentor.
While cold emails may get your foot in the door, if you genuinely want to establish a beneficial mentor relationship, it will take more than just a couple of emails. Try to set up some face-to-face conversations, even if it’s only over Skype or Zoom. This will give you a greater chance to connect with a mentor, thus increasing the benefits.
Finding a dropshipping mentor is invaluable for the long term success of your business.
A good mentor can save you from making costly mistakes in advertising efforts and wasting your valuable time. For those reasons and more, your business’s long-term success must focus on finding a dropshipping mentor when beginning the journey.
A mentor can come to you either organically from a past coworker or friend. On the other hand, you may find one after a couple of cold email blasts. In either case, the main focus should be discovering someone with whom you have a connection and maintaining a working relationship that benefits both parties.
Who says you can only have one dropshipping mentor, either?
In the best-case scenario, you may even find yourself with a few individuals who all provide invaluable guidance throughout your mission of finding success in eCommerce. So even if you find one dropshipping mentor, don’t just stop there. As you grow into your role and your business evolves, you may find yourself reaching out to new mentors who can guide you through different aspects of the journey.
What’s important is that you find someone ready to provide that invaluable mentorship and help you envision, create, and succeed in the future that you desire.
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