We have all heard numerous success stories of small businesses turning into something much bigger.
Take Sara Blakeley of Spanx, whose billion-dollar innovation had its humble beginnings with pantyhose and some scissors. She only had $5,000 and was constantly rejected by manufacturers. She pursued Spanx on the side while working an office job and eventually grew it into her current empire.
Stories like hers are inspiring, but it is important to remember that starting small requires dedication. Whether you’re seeking to pursue a business full-time or start a side hustle, there are necessary steps to take before diving into this new venture.
Take Advantage of Available Resources
When you’re starting, you have to think about what you already have and what you have access to. What are your skills, business experience, and budget? Do you know people whose expertise you might need?
This is the time when the network you have built will come in handy. The relationships you have made throughout your professional career will open up potential partnerships for your venture’s growth.
Next is how much money to shell out. The age-old rule applies, no matter how much money you have: only invest what you can afford to lose. Do not allot the budget you need for needs and responsibilities on your investments.
Tip: Take note of all of these and make a visual map. This will make it easier to sort ideas out and give structure to your plans before executing them.
Starting a business in itself is a risk, but the key is to choose the kind of risks you will be taking and learning to adapt. Let opportunities open new doors for the kind of business you will be setting up.
Make Your Business Visible.
What’s next for your project? It has got to have an identity. Here is how to go about that.
Give your business a name.
Don’t overthink. Your name has to be simple and easy to remember. It should also help your audience know what you are all about.
When considering names, think about your future customers and how they will find you online. Make sure your name is not too common but also not too difficult to spell or recall.
Create a website.
Setting up a website is important for any business. You want prospective investors and clients to have a place to visit to learn more about you.
Visit the websites of competitors or similar companies to know where to begin. Keep the website simple and straightforward for easier navigation and include contact information and office hours.
Tip: Have a short domain and use “.com” to make it convenient for your website visitors.
Don’t skimp on branding.
Now you must build a brand identity that distinguishes you from competitors. This does not have to be the first thing on your agenda, but you have to do it early on. You have to introduce your product/service to the public as soon as you can.
Establishing a brand identity also creates a personality for your business. This determines the kind of people you will be catering to. Most importantly, a solid brand identity will make your business more trustworthy for potential customers.
Once your brand is established, you will be easier to find online, from social media pages to search engines.
Other Preliminary Essentials
Now that you have the visibility of your business down, there are still other things to prepare.
Ensure you have all the necessary permits.
The first step you must take for this is to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN). It acts like a Social Security number and gives your business legitimacy.
Tip: Apply online. It is absolutely free.
Note that requirements often vary depending on your location. Check with your state if you need to have other permits before you become operational.
Set up a commercial space.
You and your partners will need a space dedicated to all the work you are doing. Set up shop in an area where your office will be accessible to your customers and team.
Don’t be afraid to apply for a commercial mortgage loan to help you acquire your space. As your business generates more profit, you will be able to cover expenses such as this.
Hone your presenting skills.
You will inevitably have to present your product or service to potential investors, employees, and clients. Have a professional deck that you can tweak as needed, and prepare a succinct and engaging sales pitch. ;
Your ability to introduce your business to other people could make or break you.
When it gets tough, go back to what you can do and what you have at your disposal to accomplish this. Who knows where your determination can bring you?