Reviewing events of 2005, if I were to choose the most important lesson for entrepreneurs, it clearly would be this: Back up your data.
This year, hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastated tens of thousands of small companies. Critical to their recovery was gaining access to their business records. Yet, roughly 60% of small businesses and nearly 70% of home-based computer users fail to back up their data regularly, according to research firm IDC.
Earlier this month, Dan Sherman explained how providing computer backup services could be a lucrative business opportunity, and described how to sell it door to door in upscale neighborhoods:
Take a cool looking hard drive with you when you go door to door. Use this one. It’s very cool looking and if you happen to get a Mac household, you’re a shoe in. Tell them you’ll set up the hard drive and ensure their data is being backed up every night at 2am (or whatever time they want) and they’ll never have to worry about it again. Their data will always be backed up.
The hard drive comes with backup software so you can just install it, tell it what to backup and you’re done. Tell them they can get it done now for $250 (which includes the hard drive and backup software and your services to set it up) or if they want to schedule another time, it’ll be $275.
Photo by Brian Steele.