The CopyPress Story on the Professional Failure Podcast

Christy Walters

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April 6, 2023 (Updated: January 24, 2024)

image for the professional failure podcast with information about Dave's episode

Nobody in business wants to fail. But each time you fail in life, you learn a new lesson. If you’re not afraid to fail in your business, you can overcome the fear of trying new things or worrying when things don’t go according to plan. Recently, our CEO, Dave Snyder, joined Justin Skinner of Prixel Creative to talk about failures he encountered while building CopyPress from where it started to where it is today. In today’s recap, we’re looking at some of the highlights from Dave’s appearance on the Professional Failure Podcast in case you haven’t listened yet:

Cash Flow Struggles

One hurdle that almost every new business faces is an initial cash flow struggle. Where are you getting your capital? Is it enough to scale your business? How do you continue to scale your business as new revenue comes in? CopyPress had similar issues in its infancy. Dave called this the “cart and horse” issue. Your company needs a certain amount of money to get started. But it also needs to provide the right products and services and have the appropriate inventory to keep making money beyond initial investments. Which of these things really comes first and which should be your first priority?

Dave found that scaling slowly and paying attention to who your customers are and what they really want can help with early cash flow issues. Another tip when dealing with early cash flow issues is not to be afraid to throw out a method that isn’t working.

“I think that’s really hard to separate that geo for a lot of business owners,” Dave said. “You know [throwing something away doesn’t] define us as a company or as an individual.”

The more quickly you’re willing to part with things that don’t work, the faster you can try new approaches that may help your cash flow.

Related: How To Calculate Return on Investment With Excel

Failure With Cash

Just like cash flow struggles can happen to any business, so can money management problems. Every business owner isn’t a financial expert (unless, of course, they’re running a financial services company). And if you’re not a finance genius, you could fall victim to the practice of predatory business loans. This happened to Dave in CopyPress’ early days.

CopyPress had investors in Europe, meaning to a traditional bank, it didn’t look like the company had enough U.S. ownership to take out a line of credit. To improve cash flow while the company grew, Fave turned to Merchant Credit Accounts, which give you a loan based on your credit card receivables. The downside? Repayment on these loans starts as soon as you receive the money, and the interest rates are sky-high. You often pay back twice the value of the loan just in interest rates.

Most businesses don’t survive this type of loan structure. CopyPress was in a predatory loan cycle for over five years with at least four of these loans in repayment at one time. Luckily, CopyPress survived the cycle and it taught Dave a valuable lesson. Cutting expenses and growing revenue can help you get more profitable from the beginning. Using digital account programs can help you spot cash flow issues and better plan for each step of your business. That way, you’re never caught unaware of expenses.

Related: What Percentage of Revenue Should You Spend on Marketing?

AI and Creativity

One of the modern struggles that almost any content company faces is battling against artificial intelligence (AI). For people who don’t write or don’t put a high value on writing quality content, AI sounds like a great resource. Why hire someone to do the work then the robots can do it in seconds? But here’s the truth: AI can write content that it’s already digested from other sources, but it can’t write something wholly new.

AI uses the Frankenstein approach to writing. It collects pieces from different sources and stitches them together. It doesn’t think for itself or come up with new concepts that don’t already exist. Now, let’s imagine for a minute that an AI program pulls its information from other AI-written content. How current, accurate, or original do you think that data is?

Part of our current crusade at CopyPress is to convince clients and customers that while AI can be an interesting or helpful tool to create content briefs or outlines, it can’t replace human writers and their human brains. Your audience doesn’t want to see the same articles over and over again. They want to see something original, which only your human writers provide.

Related: AI Copywriting: Does It Actually Work?

Author Image - Christy Walters
Christy Walters

CopyPress writer

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