The hipster revolution and what it means for small business

In the past 10 years, we’ve seen the rise of the hipster entrepreneur. They bring some flair and attitude to the small business scene and in many ways, they’ve made it cool to be a business owner once again. But their influence extends well beyond just a sense of looking good and acting overly confident.

We have an opportunity to learn from them and their attitude to doing business at a time when we all need a little more inspiration.

1. It’s now very cool to do one thing and do it really well

If you want to do nothing but sell great coffee or make a particular type of food or collect honey, that is now absolutely OK. Hipsters get this, and they are very happy to find that one thing and do it better than anyone else.

2. People love personality and hipsters have plenty of personality

I think business was getting a little bland for a while. Everything was starting to look the same like one big franchise. Hipsters have come along embracing their individuality and encouraging it in their staff. They have personality and they aren’t afraid to use it. It just goes to show that customers want to do business with people who have personalities. I know I do.

3. People will pay for quality

Hipsters have a laidback approach to doing what they do but don’t for a second think that translates into a “we don’t care” attitude. Hipsters are incredibly committed to quality. They know that consumers are prepared to pay for it and they know that as the world becomes more competitive, a lack of quality will be punished mercilessly.

4. It’s nice to smile when you walk into a business

Every time I walk into a hipster-run business I can’t help but smile. They are having fun, they can have a conversation with you, they are proud of what they do and how they do it, they have a wonderful sense of team and they laugh a lot. Who doesn’t want to buy from a business like this?

5. Hipsters have taught us to be fearless

With everything from food trucks to mail-order razor blades, hipsters are all about giving it a go. If it doesn’t work, you pick yourself up, dust yourself off and try the next idea. They teach us to not be afraid of giving a business idea a go – but do it well, charge what you are worth and let your personality shine through.

6. Hipsters know how to tell stories

With storytelling again at the forefront of marketing, hipsters know how to tell meaningful stories that count and that gets attention. They tell the personal stories, the real stories, and the stories that their customers engage with.

7. Hipsters know the importance of doing good

Hipsters don’t need to be told that they should do good, help others, support local charities, make a difference, do the right thing, protect the environment – and so on. They naturally do all of this because it’s a part of their DNA.

8. Hipsters are not afraid to charge what they are worth

I went into a barbershop in Sydney recently, a hipster haven, and they charged $75 for a shave. But of course, it is far from a simple shave – and there is a line out the door, with people waiting up to an hour for a shave. People will pay for quality – hipsters are proving that in every industry.

Find a business being run by hipsters and just sit back, look, listen and learn. Leave your ego at the door, they’ve got more than enough for all of us, but appreciate what they bring to the table. Here is your key to the future.