Ultimate Guide: What You Need When Starting a Business
You’ve decided to start a business, but where exactly do you start? Knowing you want to start is the easy part. Figuring out each step and what you’ll need is a bit more difficult. In this article, we’ll discuss what you need when starting a business. Feel free to use it as a guide as you work to make your business vision a reality.
What’s the Idea?
First and foremost, you need a business idea. Most likely, you’ve got a few floating around in your head, but now it’s time to decide on just one. Brainstorm different ideas until you find the perfect niche for you.
Creating a business that’s too general may not be as successful as a specific and specialized business that others need. As you brainstorm, think about a service you’d find helpful that doesn’t exist or is limited in your market.
Everything Needs a Plan
You’re enthusiastic and ready to get going, but before you jump headfirst into your new business, come up with a concrete plan and get it in writing. This is where your settled idea becomes concrete.
Your business plan solidifies your business goals, how you’ll operate the business, and what your business vision is. Include the following in a business plan:
- The summary: What is your business about? Who are you, and why do others need your service?
- Describe the company: This is different than the summary, but they do overlap. Who works with you? What is the atmosphere like? What have you got to offer that your competitors do not?
- Analysis of market: How are your competitors doing? What are you doing to go beyond the competition?
- Describe the service or product: what are you selling?
- Marketing plan: How will you get the word out and attract customers?
- Request for funding: If seeking funding, describe how the money will be used and how much the company needs.
- Financial future: What’s the financial projection of the company for the next few years? How will you attain it?
The business plan is helpful for you to look back on when you’re feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and wondering why you started a company. Those days come when starting a new business. The plan is also for the purpose of sharing with possible partners who could help fund the business. They’ll want every detail before they give away their money.
The Name Says It All
Choose a catchy business name that suits the service. You want the name to be easy to remember and make it clear to potential customers what you have to offer. Here are a few things to remember when choosing a name for your new company:
- Try a generator: There are several name generator tools online to help you generate possible names.
- Keep it simple: Sometimes, getting too creative only complicates things, and you’re left with a company name no one can pronounce or spell. That’s no good. Get to the point and make it easy to spell and remember.
- Know your customer: What appeals to your potential customers? Think of your audience as you choose a name that resonates with them.
- The domain: We’ll discuss the need for a website, so choose a name that will work well as part of your website domain.
- Stay away from trends: It’s tempting to go with a trendy name, but keep in mind that trends fade. Choose something hip yet timeless.
- Test it out: Aren’t sure how customers will like the name? Test it out. As you begin marketing, ask others to give feedback about the name. Prepare for constructive criticism and make changes where needed.
A successful business begins with successful marketing. If no one knows you exist, don’t expect to grow. Try these ideas as part of your marketing plan and get the word out:
- Social media: Take advantage of this free platform that allows you to really get the word out about your new business. Create a business page separate from your personal page on each platform. Create posts to get others excited about the new service coming. Share photos and videos when possible. People are drawn to them. Ask friends to share your posts on their page as well.
- Business cards: Invest in a good supply of carefully designed business cards and bring a stack with you everywhere. When it’s appropriate, hand out business cards to those who you know could benefit from your service.
- Create a grand opening event: Who doesn’t love a grand opening? Make yours unique, and remember to cater to the clientele. Advertise all over social media and do an email blast for all your contacts so that the anticipation builds.
Create the Website
Part of marketing and a way to stay customer-friendly is with a website. Hire a website designer so that the site is done correctly and looks professional. Your website can showcase products, services, and results.
Choose a domain that matches or flows well with your business name. Always check to make sure the domain doesn’t already exist.
Get an Accountant and Attorney
Some parts of preparing to start a new business are fun and creative, while other parts aren’t as exciting but just as necessary. An accountant and attorney are two of those things.
You need an accountant to make sure everything is accounted for when it comes time to pay taxes. They understand the tax laws and know how to search for tax breaks for you. They also keep track of all your spending and can help you see how much profit you’ve truly made. As you’re running a new business, you have enough to take care of. Don’t cut costs in this area. An accountant is a lifesaver for a new business.
An attorney covers you in all areas of your new business. You’re a sitting target for anyone looking for a reason to complain or file a suit against your business. Don’t be left stranded and alone if this should happen to you. An attorney knows what to put into place to help avoid those types of situations from the beginning.
Starting a new business has its ups and downs. Without hard work and perseverance, it’s tough to make it. Keep your vision in sight and use our guide to what you need when starting a new business to help you along.
At Silk Cards, we enjoy serving new business owners by offering uniquely designed business cards, such as laser cut business cards, to help them on their journey of marketing a new business. Browse our convenient online store for ideas and designs of our business cards, or contact Silk Cards for more information about how the right business card can change your new company.