If your dream is to start your own business you need to ensure that you have the right motivation in place to make it succeed. You need to be determined enough to hit the ground running and dedicated to the cause from the start. If you are sufficiently determined and do not fall at the first hurdle then you may have what it takes to help your enterprise prosper.
You need to be prepared for long hours and tiring, stressful days that may stretch over into your weekends, which may affect your life outside of work. Learning to balance family life and work life can be one of the hardest aspects of starting a business, adding additional stress to the main task in hand.
Check out: How to Become an Entrepreneur
One of the best things you can do when starting a business is to network, network, network. Networking with other businesses and people with an entrepreneurial mindset is essential to learn how to make your own business a success; ask for advice whenever you can and do not be afraid to share your dream with others.
For professional business advice there are many firms that will provide you with reliable and useful in-depth information to help you succeed and keep you driven. Do a little research and find a local firm that offers face-to-face meetings to enable you to reap maximum benefits of such advice.
Business advice companies will help you determine whether your initial business idea is viable. They will inform you of any further advice you can get or workshops that you can attend, give you tips on how to handle your bookkeeping, help you apply for financing and provide you with relevant advice on your marketing and advertising strategy to help promote and personalise your business. They can also help when it comes to purchasing business premises. Whether it is an office or a shop, your advisor will be able to help you weigh up your options.
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Learning how to handle your bookkeeping and accounts, or finding a qualified bookkeeper, will help you avoid any tax penalties issued by offices such as the HMRC in the UK. Again, a quick Google search will help you find a certified bookkeeper if you wish to outsource to avoid any critical mistakes in the future.
Another good point to make is to research and find a reliable law firm that you can have regular discussions with. A solicitor is vital to ensure that you are doing everything legally and correctly from the start. You may require legal advice at various stages when running a business, including when it comes to employing people. It may also be worth talking to an investment and wealth management company if you are investing large amounts in your business.
It is essential to understand that, once your business idea is set in stone and you have everything in place, marketing is vital to its success. Unfortunately you cannot rely on word of mouth alone in the initial stages as too few people will know about you and what your business has to offer.
There are many ways to promote and advertise your business without paying a fortune, so it is easy to plan this into your marketing strategy:
- Holding a charity event will allow you to raise money for a good cause and promote your business at the same time – people will remember who you are as they will relate the business to a good cause.
- Local newspapers are a great way of promoting your business on a low budget; they can boost your status in the local market and help you give a good, healthy start to your business
- Magazines allow you to reach out to your target audience but call for a slightly higher budget.
- Create flyers to hand out at events and leave in local shops in the area you wish to target.
One of the most important things you need to do is to build a website. Having a website is crucial and it can potentially increase your monthly income when marketed correctly. However it is important to note that just owning a website does not mean it will get noticed – you need to implement some digital marketing. This comes in various forms and contacting a few agencies will be beneficial to your business and show a return on investment. Paid searches can have immediate effects but for longevity it is worthwhile investing in search engine optimisation –allowing you to target certain sectors and keywords and ensure that your website is found when a visitor searches on Google for a keyword relevant to your business.
A digital advertising agency can also take control of your branding and help design your logo. You can apply for a trademark with a patent and trademark specialist to avoid any legal issues and ensure that you have a leg to stand on if anyone decides to steal your idea or copy your business logo.
Put together a business plan and share it with your business advisor. Use the business plan to show that you really mean business and have considered everything you need to consider prior to launching your venture. It will also help you when applying for any finance, making it more likely that you will secure funding.
Lay out the goals for your business in the plan to show your determination; include a year-on-year plan to identify and guide you on reaching your goals; include your products/services, target audience, branding and what you would do if anything went wrong at any stage. Showing that you are prepared for bumps in the long road to success highlights the fact that you are determined to succeed, regardless of hurdles along the way…