Small Business Tools: Education & Inspiration

Happy Small Business Week friends! The journey of any small business is full of peaks and valleys, surprise obstacles, and unfortunate wrong turns but the rewards can be life changing and utterly thrilling. One of the ways to avoid missteps in any journey is by planning ahead and packing the right tools. At Campfire & Co, we’ve learned a little bit along our own journey and want to share our favorite small business tools for the epic adventure ahead.

Today’s post, Education & Inspiration, will be the first in a series on small business tools to help guide you as you plan for and embark on your own journey! This list includes some of our favorite podcasts, books, blogs and more that will teach and inspire you no matter where you are in the process of growing a business. 

  • After the Jump: a podcast by Design*Sponge's Grace Bonney. Grace interviews successful makers and designers to learn more about their businesses and the challenges they face and shares her own tips and tricks along the way. Informative and most of them are nice and short (under an hour). If you'd rather read instead of listen, check out D*S's Life & Business post series. 
  • Start Up: another favorite podcast of ours takes you inside the day to day beginnings of a start up business. Season 1 follows the host Alex Blumberg as he launches Gimlet Media and Season 2 just started following a brand new dating app. A sightly larger scale but the story is brutally honest and incredibly relatable to all new businesses.
  • Business Model Generation: This book breaks down all the ways in which different businesses operate and make money.  Simple illustrations and easy to digest explanations make this one great for when you first begin molding ideas into real business plans. 
  • Skillshare: Affordable access to learn literally almost anything. Video classes offered on everything from entrepreneurship to design to cooking. A valuable resource in the beginning when you're wearing far more hats than you ever thought imaginable. 
  • Seth Godin: A best selling author, blogger, and expert marketer - everything Seth puts out there is gold. His blog includes tiny tips and tricks daily and his books dive deep into the tactics of successful businesses. 
  • Make Your Mark: A business book for makers, not managers. "Make Your Mark will arm you with practical insights for launching a purpose-driven business, refining your product, delighting your customers, inspiring your team—and ultimately—making something that matters."
  • Graphic Artist's Guild Handbook of Pricing & Ethical Guidelines: This one is obviously tailored to graphic designers specifically, but it works for lots of creative freelancers looking for info on business policies, contracts, pricing, legal and more. 
  • Dribbble: Visual inspiration. Basically, Pinterest for graphic designers. 
  • Home Polish: An inspiring business model for us personally. A tech business in the interior design industry that's pushing the boundaries of how people sell design services. They also have a stunning Pinterest collection. 

Any education or inspiration resources that we've left off of the list? Please share your favorites in the comments below!