So, there are a lot us that see a new idea or product and think to ourselves "I could of done that" or "I am already doing that". Immediately following with another thought to the tune of "Why not me? Why didn't I get to do that".
Really?... So, here are the answers...... you didn't, not well enough, and why not you?
The first 2 obstacles that we face are mostly inner conflicts with ourselves. First, you don't really believe your business is possible, or you don't have enough money. Well, luckily you have a brain. So, at least we are ahead of the scarecrow.
We put together ten steps to start getting your business to work for you. Of, course there are more than 10 but we thought this would be good beginning.
1. What is your business? Sometimes there are a million and 1 things you want to do and sometimes there is only one. But the idea that usually keeps boiling to the top of your mind, that you can't forget, that comes to you in your daydreams. That is the one. Now we can start.
2. Take a deep breath. This is not the time to empty your bank account starting a business. There needs to be planning involved. Sit down, take a deep breath and classify exactly what you services or products will be. It is much more beneficial to start with fewer good products than 20 mediocre ones. Services as well. You may want to offer the services you know well, then when you further your training and experience you can expand your services with confidence.
3. Get the basics. Whether it is through a community college, small business workshops, seminars, etc. You need to know the principles of owning a business, this doesn't mean you have to take every available business course. If you feel comfortable with accounting for example then spend your time on business licenses and law for your state. This doesn't have to be overwhelming, there are many local business organizations that provide low cost or no cost mentoring in business startup.
4. Learn from the best. There are millions of business in the world. There are more than likely other businesses out there like yours. That is fine. But, what you can do is learn from the best of those businesses. Watch where they have evolved, their clientel, where they advertise, branding, etc. Then take the best of those qualities and put your spin on it. The best of you and them, there a unique brand. None other exactly the same.
5. Branding. Branding the image you put out to the world. It is the face of your company, fonts, logos, images, colors, they should all have the same look. This is how past and future customers create a following for you product or services. Put your best face forward. That would be your one of a kind brand.
6. Goals. You need to have short and long term goals for your company, with a specific timeline attached. Some immediately think of monetary goals. These are necessary, but so are tangible goals. For instance, expansion of a product line, how many customers, how many stores are your products in, sales totals, etc. Keep your goal especially your short term goals realistic. Don't set yourself up for failure with unattainable goals.
7. Website. This does not need to be costly. There are many build-your- own companies available that keep the cost down. But, this is where your branding is important. Will you website bring in instant business, no, probably not. But, it does give those interested in you and your company a place to get to know you.
8. Networking. This is what will get you your business. If your company performs a service, outside the tech industry, this kind of companydoes better networking locally. If you have a product or service that doesn't require close proximity, then the internet should be where you start networking, but you underestimate the value of local support. Locally, get to know people, attend clubs, groups, community meetings, once people get to know you it will be easier to get them to look at your company. Online networking is important, join facebook, myspace, get a blog, twitter, make friends with these people, linked in, create a family with these contacts, chat with them, then present your product.
9. The price is right. Research similar going rates, remember if you have a product it is not only about your company making money it is also about the stores that carry your products that need to make money. So, don't outprice yourself. This concept may seem simple but there are many small businesses that don't always heed this advice.
10. Swag. If you know or have heard of those people that talk to much (not in a bad way),get them your product, free. Perform your service for free. Be strategic with who you comp to. You need them to talk about you and your company. And say good things. :)
These are just some pointers. But what is most important, that if you are surrounded by those that tell you you can't. Then go somewhere else. The reason alot of businesses succeed is they stick it out. They ignore the naysayers and they work until their hands or brains bleed. Welcome to the world of entreprenuers. You will do great.