Setting up a small business is a big step, one that can be fraught with stress and dangers. That is why you need all the help you can get. So read on for a heads-up on some of the things you need to be aware of to be a success.
Do have a clear goal to work to
First of all, being successful isn’t a good business goal. It’s a good thing, but it’s too general. You may define success differently than I do, and who knows what everyone else thinks? That is why you need to put that aside and focus on what you think defines success.
You might set yourself a goal to be in profit by the second year of being in business. Or that you have hit 100,000 sales in the first quarter. Another measure of success could be that you have expanded your business to include more employees and better premises. Or even that your product has become well known and synonymous with a certain field.
As you can see, all of these things say success, but they are not the same. That is why you need to pick one or two to work towards and then devise the steps that will get you there.
Don’t be generic
You need to watch out for being too generic when you first set up a startup. This is because you need a USP or unique selling position for your product or service. Something that is super hard to do if there are 10 other companies offering exactly what you do.
In fact, really don’t be afraid to specialize at all, because it’s specialist services and products that people really pay money for in this market. This is because a specialized thing will solve a very particular problem. One that the client has problem spent a lot of time and effort already trying to get sorted. Making the service that you can offer them much more valuable than if it was purely generic.
Do be as professional as possible
Another thing you need to watch out for when starting up your own small business is the level of professionalism that you convey. Just because you are a small company doesn’t mean that you can’t do things properly, or give each task its due diligence.
Remember it’s the customer’s perception of how they were treated and the service that they received. As well as the product that you are offering that will get them to leave positive reviews and earn your repeat business.
It can also help to build your professional image to have some of the things that you would expect to see in a larger company.
These could include a professionally created logo, headed business paper, and physical address for your business. That means using a business address service rather than your home address. As this is something that can inspire confidence in clients, as well as protect the privacy of your residential home.
Don’t be scared of reaching out for help
Something else that it is useful to watch out for when setting up a business is trying to do everything on your own. Yes, you are the owner / CEO, but that doesn’t mean you have to do everything from sending the mail to meeting clients.
Remember your time is usually better off spent negotiating with clients and coming up with new revenues streams. That is why it can be a good idea to reach out for help with the other stuff.
In fact, now we have the digital economy there are several ways that you can get some help with running your business. You can, of course, go to an employment agency. Something that is better for long-term temporary workers, and finding particular people for the position.
Or you can use ad hoc freelancers on sites like Peopleperhour.com. This can work especially well if you have finite project to finish that doesn’t come under your own specialism. Such as graphic design work, or content creation.
Lastly, there are also sites like TaskRabbit, that can allow you to employ someone for the odd hour here and there. Something that can work out really well for busy small business owners that need a hand with a few things, but not someone for a whole day.
Do work the power of the network
Another thing that it can be useful to get a heads-up in when getting your small business off the ground is networking. Getting your brand out there in the digital sphere is vital to the success of any company small or large, and the best way to do this is to combine having a great marketing campaign and wide network yourself.
Of course, your marketing campaign will draw attention to the benefits and the USP of your product and service. But having a personally large network can provide you with access to the resource to get things done. As well as allowing you to get whatever it is you are offering in front of those that need it most. Making them much more likely to buy.
Don’t think too small
You small business owners out there also need to be warned about thinking too small. Sometimes the thing that most limits the success of a company is the view of those in charge and their inability to change things.
Most businesses do start small, but that doesn’t mean they have to stay that way. So ensure that you explore all the opportunities that pass your way from supplying your product or service to a global market, to join forces with the market leader. As all of these can be valuable steps on the stairway to success.
Do watch out for any legal issues
Lastly, remember that when you are in business, it is very different than if you are doing something as a hobby or for fun. Selling a service or product for profit makes it a commercial situation, and that means it’s it covered by different laws.
So it’s always good to bone up on the rules surrounding your area before you start trading. This can include the rule around licensing and intellectual property. As this can help protect your product or service and the materials you have created around it. As well as laws that protect your customer and employees.