3 Free Things Shark Tank's Daymond John Says You Must Do to Help Your Startup Survive

Former West Coast Editor
3 min read

A business launches in America every 60 seconds, according to the Brookings Institution. Every 80 seconds, one fails. Only about half of newly established companies last five years or more and about one-third survive 10 years or more, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports.

The statistics are daunting, but don’t be discouraged by them, Daymond John says. Instead, put your time and energy into digging in and fighting for your startup’s survival right out of the gate.

“It’s OK to have a healthy sense of paranoia,” the FUBU founder told Entrepreneur, “but only enough to fuel the fire to keep going, get better and survive.”

Related: Daymond John's Top 7 Tips on How to Launch Your Product Like a Shark

We recently caught up with the multi-millionaire marketing mogul on the set of Shark Tank in Culver City, Calif., where he shared the top three basic steps you can take to help your business succeed in the sink-or-swim startup game.

1. Tap your network to your advantage.

“People have many individuals around them who they can barter and trade with at the beginning of their business that they don’t leverage to their advantage. We’re talking tapping into other people’s marketing, mind power and momentum, even other people’s manpower. Cross-promote with others’ in the industry you operate in. It goes both ways. You promote them and they promote you. It’s mutually beneficial and it doesn’t cost a thing.”

2. Crush your social media marketing.

“Absolutely study and dominate social media. Make social media 99 percent of your priority. There are about 15 social platforms that you can go onto to acquire customers and/or see what they like and don’t like, or, more importantly, to know what your competition is doing and learn off of them. That’s an education that’s yours for the taking, for free. Social media marketing is really, really important. I even do it myself today, every single day. Be all over Twitter and Snapchat. Make it happen to build up your business.”

Related: Shark Tank Star Daymond John Says This Is the Biggest Branding Mistake of All

3. Build infectious brand ambassadors.

“All you need are one or two infectious advocates of your brand to take your startup over the top. Get your brand’s fans excited to be part of a movement and they’ll spread the word about you for free. Feed them. Give them information and even free product, if you can. Give them a special moment with you that they can snap a pic of and share all over social media. Once they’re part of your brand tribe, believe me, they’ll do the promoting for you. It’s amazing.”


Not sure what we're giggling about here. Press junket day = a blur. Thankful for my trusty recorder. #SharkTank

A photo posted by Kim Lachance Shandrow (@lashandrow) on Jun 20, 2016 at 10:22am PDT


To glean more of John’s advice, check out Shark Tank’s Season Eight premiere on your local ABC station. It airs on Sept. 23 at 9 p.m. ET. 

More from Entrepreneur

Get heaping discounts to books you love delivered straight to your inbox. We’ll feature a different book each week and share exclusive deals you won’t find anywhere else.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Starting, buying, or growing your small business shouldn’t be hard. Guidant Financial works to make financing easy for current and aspiring small business owners by providing custom funding solutions, financing education, and more.

Latest on Entrepreneur

Entrepreneur Media, Inc. values your privacy. In order to understand how people use our site generally, and to create more valuable experiences for you, we may collect data about your use of this site (both directly and through our partners). By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the use of that data. For more information on our data policies, please visit our Privacy Policy.