Boss Lady

A short guide to starting a business for success

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Starting a business right now may seem like an impossible idea. There’s so much uncertainty for small businesses as it is. Moments of crisis, tightening of finances and risky economic climates. But whilst an unpredictable economy can make starting a business tough, it’s not implausible – especially if you take the right measures early on to set yourself up.

The last 12 months saw many people laid off from their full-time jobs. Fortunately, it became the catalyst for some to take the leap and convert uncertainty into opportunity. Market changes have inspired current business owners to alter their plans for success and for emerging entrepreneurs to start their ventures.

Starting a new business can seem confusing and hard if you don’t know where to begin. On the other hand, some people think it’s going to be easy to get their new business off the ground. But the journey to becoming an entrepreneur requires plenty of time and lots of hard work. It shouldn’t come as a major surprise, but lots of people unfortunately fail when just starting out. We’d like to help make it a little bit easier to start your new business. So, we’ll share some tips and advice so your new business can start off on the right foot. Ready to dive in? Here’s what to consider before you begin.

Choosing a Name

It might seem like you have the perfect name for your new company. But there could be a potential problem you forgot about.

It’s possible somebody already has your business name. To find out if it’s still available, check it through a business registration search. If your search shows no results, it means your name is available. If you do come up with a result, your name is already taken so you’ll need to modify it or change it completely.

Creating a Business Plan

Now that you’ve come up with an amazing name for your company, it’s time to start creating a business plan. Begin by asking yourself the most important questions about your business to develop an effective plan. Those questions are:

  • What’s my business’s purpose?
  • Who’s my target audience?
  • What’s the major goal of opening my business?
  • How will I obtain capital to fund my business?

As you brainstorm and think about the answers to these questions, you’ll be able to use the information you’ve discovered and turn it into a business plan. By taking time out of your busy schedule in the beginning, you’ll give your company a real chance at achieving lasting success by creating a plan that’ll take you to the next phase of your business life.

Understand Your Financial Position

A new business needs money to grow, regardless of the industry you’re in. Review your current financial position and determine how much you’ll need to set things up. It’s important to have a reliable safety net and a financial backup plan in place, with enough cash flow to sustain the first few months.

Unless you have savings, you’ll need to seek funding or take out a small business loan. Secured personal loans can also help fund your startup and have a lower risk and interest rate. Because of the reduced risk to lenders, you might be able to borrow a larger amount than you would with a regular personal or business loan.

Prioritise a Strong Digital Brand

If you’re not prioritising digital, you’ll get left behind. 2020 saw more businesses move their products and services online and staff working remotely. Now, business owners must keep up with changing consumer and employee expectations by accelerating digital efforts. Online marketing is essential for businesses wanting to compete, no matter the industry.

Start by investing in a website and SEO copywriting. Optimise how you communicate with your customers and make it easy for them to find you and the solutions you provide. Remember, digital transformation isn’t only about tech. Going digital is an innovative mindset and culture that’s ongoing for businesses over one-off projects or set and forget tactics.

Prioritising a strong digital brand also means including automation for productivity, cybersecurity, local SEO, creating content your audience wants to consume and maximising the right technology for your business.

Follow Industry Experts

Keep your finger on the pulse and see what other people are doing in your industry. What can you bring to the table they can’t? Look for market and content gaps to find effective ways to get your message across.

Connecting with industry experts is also a good way to help put your business out there. Just make sure you stay on brand and focused on your niche. Business success comes from authentically made brands. Find what’s missing in the industry and communicate a genuine, organic message.

Plan Ahead

The best businesses plan ahead, with enough flexibility to adapt if and when things change. Draft a recession-proof model with ideas on how to expand or broaden your offerings over time. Include room for growth. Brands need to focus on both business and personal improvements to expand and stay educated. Find new ways to learn, upskill and improve your service.

Learn from Your Customers

Your customers and staff, if you choose to hire, are what keeps business ticking along. As you grow, listen to their feedback. There’s great value in paying attention to what they say and learning to engage with them effectively.

Find ways to encourage your customers (and staff) to communicate with you. Use reviews to connect and receive feedback. Take on board constructive criticism as well. Responding to bad reviews is as important as positive feedback and helps you build a more resilient brand.

Find Balance

Owning and running a small business takes work. Long nights, celebratory wins and tedious trips back to the drawing board. It’s all part of the process. Without balance, burnout is almost always inevitable.

Somewhere along the way, the line between work and home blurred. But an important part of running a business is understanding we’re all human – and that goes for you too. 90 hour work weeks aren’t sustainable and they’ll decrease your performance over time.

Instead, find a balance that works for you and streamline your operations. Avoid trying to be an expert at everything and offload tasks where possible. Outsourcing advertising, content marketing, bookkeeping, SEO and accounting will help you focus on your business and your customers. Use online tools and time tracking for projects to optimise your time.

Jayde Walker is a small business copywriter in Perth. Catch her on LinkedIn.   

About Business Woman Media

Our women don’t want to settle for anything but the best. They understand that success is a journey involving personal growth, savvy optimism and the tenacity to be the best. We believe in pragmatism, having fun, hard-work and sharing inspiration. LinkedIn

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