Tips for First Time Business Owners You Need to Adopt
Starting a business can be quite overwhelming. I should know. Making decisions about daily tasks, looking for where to cut costs and trying to delegate tasks appropriately if you work with a team.
I did a little research on how successful business owners stay in business and here are a couple of tips that were common among them.
1. Develop a Realistic Business Plan
This is something you need to do before you start your business. Develop a one and five year plan so you can measure your company’s progress.
- How many clients do I want at the end of a year?
- How much profit/revenue will I make every month?
- What marketing channels am I going to use?
In the business plan, you need to include information about your products and service, your budget and how you will attract your target audience. Knowing all these will help you stay on track and give you milestones you can work towards.
2. Keep a Journal
Keep a journal to write down your thoughts. Always take one to meetings to write down points so you can check back later. This helps you to be more functional.
You can always go back to your notes when you are feeling stuck or confused.
Networking helps you meet a lot of people; mentors, peers and potential clients. You can even meet younger professionals in your niche to mentor them.
4. Delegate Tasks
Identify what you can do and what you need extra help doing. Do not waste your time and effort on tasks you are not good that as that will impede your functionality.
Example, even though as a small business owner you will probably handle your own social media marketing, you might need help developing and promoting advertising for your product.
5. Start Local
I meet a lot of people who want to take over the world with their product/service asap. Start locally and progress from there. Not only is it less expensive, you can learn from starting small and scaling up those techniques to fit a bigger audience.
6. Ask You Clients For Feedback
To fully understand how well you are doing you should get feedback from your clients; both good and bad. This will help you make adjustments where need be and stick to techniques that work.
7. Get Organized
Use tools like Asana and Trello to keep track of projects you’re working on. If you are working with a team, you can share these projects with your team members and assign tasks and deadlines to them.
Have a folder on your laptop for all documents relating you business and file them based on project or client depending on how you operate.
Get an accounting program that is easy to enter expenses and income, this will make it easy to keep track of all your expenses and how much profit you make per time.
8. Ask Your Clients for their Emails
Email marketing is one of the most direct ways of reaching your audience/customers. Build a solid email list for sending newsletters or updates about a promo you are running.
With email marketing, you can easily track how people interact with your emails. This will help you understand your customers and target them better.
9. Go Digital
Running a business and marketing is not the same as it used to be 3 years ago. Everyone is on the internet now and you have to meet them there. Develop a social profile and website for your company so you can stay ahead of your competitors and meet your target audience where they are.
10. Check Your Growth Regularly
Check your company growth regularly against your business plan. This will help you know if you are on the right track and what to do to be better so you are as successful as ever.
11. Draw Up Agreements
Make sure all your contracts and agreements are in writing. This should include your rate, timeline, services you provide and both your signatures.
Having your clients sign terms of agreement also keeps everybody in check of what is expected.
12. Take Risks
You need to manage your company wisely to ensure it grows but don’t be afraid to take risks. Having a errors in your early days of business is nothing new. You will recover from them and be a wiser entrepreneur.
13. Be Open To Advice
Listen to the advice that might be valuable to your business but don’t take all. Most of all, learn to trust your gut.
14. Brand Yourself
Dress properly when you go out and act decently. You are addressed the way you dress, they say. Join social media groups on your niche and portray yourself as somewhat as an expert in your field.
You can also start talking about your business on your own personal page. Avoid trying to sell all the time but focus on the benefits of your product/service. Provide valuable information to your audience.
Take time off working from time to time to recharge your brain. Disconnecting from work gives your brain the necessary reset it needs to solve some problems.
16. Learn Everyday
Read blog posts, magazines and books related and unrelated to your business. It keeps you sharp and intelligent. As an entrpreneur, you should be learning new things everyday. Learning helps reassure you when you feel like giving up.
17. Use LinkedIn
This is a very important business tool. With this tool, you can network, build your brand, stay up to date on what’s trending in your industry and and show off your accomplishments.
18. Eat Healthy and Exercise
Eat healthy to keep your energy levels up and avoid health risks. It’s all fine and good to work hard and make a lot of money, but what use is it if your health is poor.
19. Do Not Quit Your Day Job
Being an entrepreneur is not all glitz and glamour like the media makes it out to be. It’s turpsy turvy and it might take a while before you start making real money. The last thing you need to do is to be worried about how to pay rent or buy food.
Additionally, at your job, you can tell your colleagues about your new business and hopefully get a few clients.
20. Don’t Give Up
Do not listen to negative people. If you fail with one idea, start another. You’re an entrepreneur, no matter what, success or failure, up or down. Remember that.
21. Have Fun
Build a business and enjoy life because fun is infectious and can attract the right crowd.
These tips can help any new business owner manage their company’s growth and can keep business growth on track in a meaningful way.
Also published on Medium.