Many people dream about starting their own business. A month ago, I wrote an article about why you need to be an entrepreneur. Having started several of my own businesses I’d like to organize some of the necessary steps for you to follow when you venture into this risky but exciting world. In Part 2 of this article, I will discuss ways to take your business to the next level once you have gotten it off the ground.
Areas You Must Address
- Starting With Your Idea. This includes thinking of and expanding your initial idea, naming your business, finding a location, and writing a business plan. Business cards are also a must in order to gain credibility. If your budget is tight, Vista Print offers 250 free business cards and you only pay shipping charges. When I started my first business 6 years ago and wanted to test a few ideas before committing a lot of capital, I remember ordering Vista’s cards. They are good quality and you can’t beat the price.
- Money Issues. Figure out how large of a budget you will need. How will you get this money? Do you have it in the bank or will you borrow from friends and family? How will you pay yourself from your income?
- Marketing Your Business. Be sure to create a memorable logo and marketing plan. Don’t forget to create a web site if appropriate.
- Selling Your Products, Services or Ideas. Will you build a sales team? Do you need to find a sales distributer? Will you do all your own selling? Remember that selling yourself and your business is the only way to bring in revenue.
- Advertising. Create ads that match your business. Which advertising channels will you pursue?
- Franchise Opportunities. Is your business the type that you can franchise to others? I personally like to find business models that are scalable in nature. Franchising is one effective way to grow and scale your business. You have to start by writing a franchise business plan if you want to pursue this area.
- E-Business Opportunities. Can you create your business into an e-business also? If so, you might want to hire internet consultants to help program your web site, e-commerce and online branding.
- HR Issues. Hire an HR person or brush up on issues related to hiring employees and workers’ comp.
- Growing Your Business. Once you have revenues and your business is branded, start thinking about ways to grow it further. This might include opening a second location, creating an off-shoot of your current e-business or branding your company globally.
There are many different ways to succeed and different businesses have different success stories, but they all have two things in common – they organized their ideas and had an action plan. A superior quality business plan is always the first place to start. If you have any stories about your business experiences, please leave your comments below telling us about what you’ve done.
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