Opening a business is an extremely exciting time. Perhaps you have been working at a company your whole career and are ready to branch off on your own. Maybe you and some friends decided to open a brewery together after years of being interested. Regardless of what industry you are in, or why you go into business, therein lies a major challenge for every business owner: getting off the ground. Many people can flip a sign from “Closed” to “Open” or proclaim they own a business, but the statistics regarding it are stark, over 20% of new businesses fail in their first year.
So how can you get your business off the ground? A mix of branding, accessibility for customers and organized bank accounts is a good starting point. We’ll touch on each aspect and leave a few additional ideas at the end to help your business take off.
Get Your Name Out There
One of the biggest challenges businesses face is how to gain visibility and traction in their space or industry. Crafting a marketing budget to advertise your business is key to getting your name out there. Between Facebook and Instagram ads, or mentions in radio, local newspapers, and television, the options are endless. But, just because you can advertise on all these platforms doesn’t necessarily mean it’s right for your business, and especially not so for your pockets.
Think about your customer demographic, where do they spend their time? What are they interested in? Does it make sense to advertise your business broadly or more narrowly? If you are just starting out and are looking to garner brand recognition, try using these answers to create effective tactics like a pop-up shop, or mailing out discount coupons to people who live near your store.
Be Accessible to Customers
Once you get your name out there, you must be accessible to customers looking to learn more or get in touch with you. This can come in many shapes and sizes, from having a user-friendly website to a postal address where customers and suppliers can contact you. An easy-to-navigate website is a must for being accessible to customers. If you are looking to get started on branding and your business website, read more here.
If you are running your business from your house, or a remote location, you may have questions on how people can get in touch with you without publicizing your home address. Luckily, there are alternatives to running your business without a permanent address. Depending on the type of business you are running, a permanent address is required, but otherwise, there are several ways around it. Having a dedicated business postal address can allow you to take your business on the road with the ability to check your mail from your phone at your convenience.
Get Your Finances Organized
One of the most important parts of your business is your finances. Differentiating your personal finances from your business finances isn’t only responsible for when tax season comes around, but will also make your life infinitely easier. Early on in your business’s life, understanding your cash flow, expenses and revenue is vital to growing.
While these are also important themes for your business at all times, having a clear understanding of your business finances early on can help you make the right moves and pivots to grow. This is where a digital bank comes into play. Dedicated accounts for your business can help you easily track your finances, make digital payments, and invoice suppliers remotely.
There are dozens of ways to fast start your business, but there are a few things you can’t go without to get it off the ground. Advertising your business in the right way to your customer base is vital to gaining early brand recognition and salience. A business-specific mailing address can help you remain out of the public eye, while also providing you reliable mail delivery when you need it, from anywhere. And finally, organized business finances will help you determine what you can afford and keep your business ready for tax season. If you want to learn more about the legal and financial steps of opening a business, read this 10-step guide to starting a business. Or, if you want some business ideas, read this list of low-investment options. Opening a business is a time to challenge yourself, but also enjoy the fruits of your labor. Couple these tips with your own unique personality and your business will be well on its way.