There’s never been a better time in history to become an entrepreneur. According to Foundr.com, you only need $127 to start a business. Still, it doesn’t matter whether you have a hundred or a thousand saved up. Having money is one thing, knowing what to actually do with it is another.
As an aspiring entrepreneur looking to build your empire, having realistically scalable goals will help you navigate the often complex world of trade and business and catapult you from one rung of the ladder to the next.
This article sums up the most important steps you should take so that you can make your big idea real and start being your own boss.
Solve a Problem
Anything that sells starts with a single profitable idea. and given the seemingly endless woes of humanity, complex or mundane, if you can come up with a great solution to at least one, you’d bet there’s a potential for that idea to become lucrative.
Don’t overthink. Focus on small problems or everyday issues that you think can be improved or solved if there’s just one upgrade to the current solution- or lack thereof.
For instance, most smartphone owners aren’t really comfortable with the sometimes difficult handling of their devices. But somebody thought up: why not place a handle in the back of the phone so people can wrap their fingers around it and enhance the mobility of their devices without risking dropping it too often?
Turns out the inventor was right and the accessory soon became sought-after.
If you plan to sell stuff online, you should see to it that your products give value and is not just another store that looks like 20 others.
Your idea can be simple or complex. What’s important is it should be workable and practical.
Write a Plan
A business plan breathes realism into your vision. Having a long-term goal is not enough. You need to figure out how you’re going to go about them. That includes the strategies you need to put in place when challenges are in the way.
To be able to create a business plan, you must conduct a thorough research first to figure out your target audience and the competition. Data from these will help you create a solid marketing strategy.
A good business plan should include details about your:
- key partners, your investors, and potential shareholders
- key activities, operations management
- value proposition
- customer relationships
- customer segments
- key resources
- cost structure
- revenue streams
Your business plan should be SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound) and adaptable.
The next step is to figure out where you can get the money to get your business rolling. Fortunately, you don’t really have to save for 36 months to fund your ideas. There are multiple ways to get funding for your business today such as microloans, SBA loans, venture capital, personal financing, grants, and crowdfunding.
Iron Out Your Business’s Legalities
Not sure about your business name? Seems fair. But it’s not a solid reason to delay registering your business. Before all operation demands overwhelm you, make sure the little things are out of the way already or you’ll risk forgetting them in the process, an error that can potentially be costly should the unexpected happen.
Figure out your business structure, forward all the requirements and don’t put it off for later.
Purchase a Business Insurance
It’s easy to dismiss potential liabilities as a later concern and a lot of other small businesses are right to risk it without any problem. But if you want a sure cushion from potential lawsuits, property damages, and other problems that can seriously harm your business, purchasing an insurance policy at the outset is a good move.
Issues like these may be rare but when they are serious, they can bring down your business entirely. An insurance policy will give you peace of mind knowing that you’re covered no matter what.
Work With Passionate People
A large part of your business’s success is the competence of the people you work with. Seek good talents and make sure they are with you on your goals. Working with competent people not only makes things a little bit easier. Knowing that you can count on your team is huge security when navigating uncertainty.
Brand and Market
Now it’s time to get your products or services out there. Branding will help you create an impression. Marketing helps maintain the attention and interest in your brand.
Although there are multiple pathways you can take to market your brand, there’s no surefire tactic to get it right. Nailing the marketing game always takes serious creativity and intimate knowledge of your target market. So before you pour all your resources into one strategy, make sure you’d had the research done.
Refine as You Go
The business landscape is continuously shifting. While that can be potentially bad news for your awesome business plan and marketing strategy, there’s a comfort to be had in the fact that there’s always room for improvement. The challenge lies in being resilient in the face of uncertainty. As you will soon learn, the excitement is in the surprises. So don’t double back when you make mistakes. Build your way up from lessons learned along the way.
Every epic business mogul had to start somewhere. Despite the obvious challenges of starting your own business, you can take comfort in the fact that taking baby steps means you’re headed in the right direction. Let the gap between where you want to be and where you are right now inspired and not discourage you.