How to start your own business, some tips to get going.
You need to have a clear vision
When setting up a business the one thing that every good entrepreneur will need is to have a vision of what they would like to achieve. Setting a goal is one of the most important parts of setting up a business but you can only set a goal for yourself (or your business) if you have a clear vision of how you are going to achieve it.
Be enthusiastic about your business
You have to love what you do and if you have any doubts in your mind either get rid of them or don’t do it at all. If you do something half-heartedly it will not work. Commitment and enthusiasm are some of the key areas to make you and your business a success. If you haven’t found what you’re passionate about keep looking. Once you find it, ways will unfold and doors will open. Keep believing in yourself and your business idea.
No matter what business you are in, you have to sell your products or services. If you don’t sell, you will not make it. There is probably a lot of people who believe that their products and services will sell themselves. Let me assure you that this is not the case. Yes, you will at some stage build a reputation for yourself and your business (hopefully a good one) but until such time comes you will need to go out and look for customers. If you do this right from the beginning then it will not be so hard to continue once you have a good reputation.
There are always ups and downs in business. Sometimes you make money and sometimes you have to go days, weeks or even months without making any. Be committed to your goals and tasks and keep going. Don’t give up even in the hardest times. It will be worth it in the end. Now you need to be smart about it as well. Sometimes we have to do the things we don’t like doing just in order to survive, buy food, clothes, etc. If an opportunity rings, take it. If you have to get a part-time job (or full-time employment) in order to get your business off the ground, take it.
If you want to succeed and something doesn’t work, change tactics.
Networking is a great way to connect with like-minded people and other businesses. Sometimes you can go to networking events, the important part is to throw yourself out there and let people and other business owners, managers see that you exist. If you persist in it, you might get some future customers out of it.
Write a detailed business plan
It is important to write your business plan and if possible in every single detail. There is a lot of people who think they only need to write a business plan in order to get funding or loans from the bank. This is just one advantage to have if you want to go down that road. But even if you don’t want to get funding or investors coming on board etc. it is of the utmost importance to have written your own business plan. The reason being is that you will find faults within your business that you then can eliminate immediately. You will also get a much better understanding of your business, your competition, your products and services and most importantly your future customers.
You should always surround yourself with people who are supportive and want to help. Of course, you will find many likeminded people in networking groups and this is a great way to start. Some people may even consider having a business partner or (when creating a limited) board of directors who could help to build the business.
Do your research
This is probably one of the most vital parts of any new business venture. Understanding your market. Look to consider the following: Private or business use, age group, male/ female/ children/ girls/ boys/ families, etc., competitors, selling locally, countywide or internationally, needs analyzes, pricing, talk to your potential clientele, would they need/ use your product or service, test clients, feedback from your test customers. When testing your product or services with people don’t just test it with family and friends. Test it with real customers, people you don’t know. Get solid feedback.
Create a niche market or make your business unique
Creating a niche market or making your business unique is a key factor. Even if you sell products or services that other companies offer as well (or similar items) it is important to let your customers know why they should buy from you. What is unique about your business model that no one else could offer? What is the additional service that makes you stand out from the crowd? Think about this for a while but again, don’t over-think it. Giving your customers a great experience should be part of any new business in order to survive and don’t be afraid to tell them why they should buy from you.
Just do it
Don’t delay. If you have all the ingredients, you’ve done the market research, you lined up some customers then just go for it. You will always find things or people that could or want to stop you. Family and friends may tell you that this is crazy. You have to deal with revenue, taxes, VAT, employment issues, etc. There are so many things that when you look into it, you will most likely say it’s not worth the hassle.