So, you have finally decided to start your own business and you know what products/service you want to introduce to the market. But do you know how to move it forward into action?
Most people have amazing ground-breaking ideas, but they never come to fruition as the actual process of starting a business seems daunting to many. According to an article by Waceke Nduati Omanga , the only way to start a business is to just start.
But there are several key steps that you must bear in mind.
1. Use the community around you
The Government offers support to those starting or wanting to grow their businesses. There are several business finance schemes, support structures, grants and loans to help small businesses gain a stronger foothold. It is also worth searching within your local area as there may be workshops or events in place to support those wanting to start businesses, for instance such assistance is offered by local authorities e.g. Bedford Borough Council and Central Bedfordshire Council.
2. Importance of Shareholder agreements
Shareholder agreements can be a good way of mapping out future solutions for problems which may arise whilst in business. It is important to have a plan to protect your business, especially when the start-up is a limited company venture with one or more business partners. A shareholders’ agreement (SHA) is an agreement between shareholders of the company. Its purpose is to protect the shareholders’ investment in the company, establish a fair relationship between the shareholders and govern the company’s management. A SHA is an important legal document. It is therefore wise to get legal assistance before entering into an SHA.
3. Social Media Vs Word of mouth
Even in this social media era it is fair to say that word of mouth marketing(WOMM) is still classed as the most valuable form of marketing. Recommendations from friends and family are more valuable to consumers and this is more effective than other types of marketing.
It is important to strike a balance between both marketing methods. The number of followers you may have on social media does not necessarily dictate the success of your business. Be careful not to get too caught up in collecting social media fans and forgetting to connect with them. But as with any other marketing strategy careful thought and planning still needs to be implemented to get the most from WOMM.
4. Network Network Network !!!
It is important to communicate and have a strong presence in the networks around you. Business networking is an invaluable way to expand your knowledge and be around like-minded people who can motivate you and your business. Having connections in different business sectors is a very valuable asset. Make sure that you regularly attend business and social events that will help you get your face known and start building contacts.
Searching for events on Eventbrite is a good place to start as most are advertised here.
5. Your clients are your teachers
Finally, you need to value and appreciate each client. This can be a very effective pipeline to valuable product feedback and promotion thorough referrals. Client feedback is a good way to track your development as a business and provides potential for future growth.
How are you finding life as an entrepreneur?
Let us know the challenges you are facing or any tips you have for those starting up!
5 ways to generate Word-of-Mouth as a small business-
For more information:
Solinda Nyamutumbu is a legal intern at Pure Business Law. She is an LLB Graduate from The University of West England as of July 2017 and began her LPC/MSc course at The University of Law (Bloomsbury) in September 2017 as a part-time student. She has greatly enjoyed the varied and in-depth commercial experience which she is gaining during her internship at Pure Business Law.