A new year hints at so many new possibilities, doesn’t it?
As the new decade begins, you have a clean slate in front of you, so what will you do with it?
You might want to learn more about a new career path, opening up completely new opportunities for you. Perhaps you are keen to put your career on hold whilst you travel the world. Perhaps now is the time to finally get started working on your own business, developing and building up your own ideas, reputation and client base. Possibilities like this are exciting, but they can also be a little daunting, which is where we come in today.
We want to allay those fears that are stopping you from acting as we share with you a few suggestions around how to take those first steps into running your own business.
Formulate Your Ideas
You might know that you want to work for yourself and start your own business, but you are struggling to come up with exactly what you will do. In this case, you need to take some time to formulate your ideas.
Start by listing all of those skills that you have, areas of interest, any needs that you have spotted in your area and the types of work that appeal to you. Think about your own strengths and they types of businesses that would play to them.
Ideas should start coming to you through this process until one stands out to you more than any others. That’s the one to go with.
Now that you know what you want to do, drill down until you have the details mapped out. How will this business operate, what suppliers do you need to research, who will your customers be? It can be useful to put together a business plan at this stage to guide you.
Get Some Feedback
Armed with your ideas and plans, it will be worth getting some feedback at this point.
Start by talking to friends and family about your business and get their initial reactions and insights. They might be able to add something to your plans or point out any pitfalls for you to avoid.
You can then get feedback from your potential customer base. Market research is a step that a lot of fledgling businesses overlook, but this could be hugely beneficial in helping you to shape your business and to avoid any initial mistakes.
Take on board what your customers would be looking for from you and be prepared to let go of any preconceived ideas that are simply not hitting the spot.
Arrange for All the Practicalities
Now that you are confident with your idea, you can get the practicalities arranged.
You can arrange your suppliers, find premises if needed, arrange for any funding that you might need, get domains registered and websites in place. This will all be specific to your business needs and it is worth doing your research to ensure that you are getting the best value for everything.
You will also need to register as self employed and register your business for tax purposes. You will probably want to get some business insurance in place and you will want to get some accounting and bookkeeping software.
Spend Time on Your Branding
Your business’ branding is absolutely critical as it will help you to show everyone what your business is about. It needs to appeal to prospective clients and your reputation will be built upon it.
Branding is the complete package, the image of your business, its values, how it operates, its customer service promises and its overall ethos. This needs to be conveyed through all that you do, from thinking about your signage to the voice and tone of your social media channels.
Create Your Marketing Plan
As you begin your business, you are going to need to attract those initial customers. How will you do that?
Your marketing plan will encompass your design and branding plans, it will focus on your website content and your digital marketing strategy, along with face to face marketing methods. These could be anything from networking meetings, flyers through doors, launch parties to building relationships with clients on a one to one basis.
Believe in Yourself
This is something that you are going to need to do throughout every step of this process.
You will need to remain focused and determined to get your business off the ground, and to do that, you need to be confident that you can do it.
You can do it. You have worked hard on this concept and you have covered all of the bases. Believe in yourself and go for it.