In the start-up of a business, unless you’ve just invented the cure for cancer, you’re going to need to market or advertise. Truthfully, even if you’ve invented the cure for cancer, you’re probably going to have to market and advertise, possibly even more than normal. After all, you’ll have to convince the skeptics that you’ve invented the cure for cancer. Yet, to advertise effectively, you’ll have to develop strong marketing. Therefore, let’s analyze the difference between marketing and advertising. Then, I’ll dive into how to develop a marketing plan.
In many businesses, vendors and suppliers are common. Many times, you can’t operate a business without them. In spite of the fact that you may become friends with vendors and suppliers, you’ll still have to negotiate pricing, warranties, and service with them to keep your costs down and your profit margins high. Ultimately, the relationships you have with vendors and suppliers can help drive the success or failure of your start-up business. Therefore, you want to master the art of negotiation. You want to know how to get the best prices from suppliers and vendors in a way that is honorable and above reproach. You want to do so without burning bridges or harming anyone. So let’s jump right in and learn nine ways you can negotiate pricing.
As you’re building your BIG IDEA into a business, you’ll probably need to hire employees. Most likely, you’ll even experience some form of employee turnover or volatility throughout the course of your business. So how do you hire “good” employees? How do you know who’s capable, loyal, trustworthy, and dependable? Do employees like that exist? Can you weed out the unmotivated, unqualified, and unreliable? Well, over the course! In my years as a business owner, I’ve developed my own hiring practice, based on expert advice and what has worked for me. Therefore, I’d like to share the requirements for how to hire the right employees for your startup.
At this point in our Starting a Business series, let’s assume you’ve found funding and you’re ready to get your business going. However, from the moment you open the front door, you face risk. Accidents could happen. Employees could become disgruntled and sue. Your building could burn down. A computer hacker could steal your customers’ personal information. Almost any bad thing could happen. So how do you protect yourself and your business? By purchasing good insurance policies. Thus, I’m going to cover the 7 types of business insurance start-up owners must have to protect themselves from harm.
As your big business-idea becomes a reality, it’s time to start thinking about the structure of your business. What types of software systems do you need in place to work efficiently? How will you process phone calls, work orders, purchase orders, sales, deliveries, etc.? Eventually, every business will develop and utilize operational systems. However, your goal should be to establish certain operational systems BEFORE you open your business. Why? Because business efficiency matters. The more organized you are when you open, the fewer problems you’re likely to have after you open. Creating workflow systems in your business can streamline your processes and procedures.
When you start a business, you can see the good your product or service will provide a marketplace, but you have to get the business off the ground first. But, you’ll need money to do that. The good news is, you can start many businesses with very little capital. However, I’ve also worked with many clients who needed millions of dollars to start-up a business. They needed money for equipment, employees, marketing, retail space, and more. So if you need money to start your business, where do you get it? Knowing that banks are hesitant to loan money to new businesses, you’ll have to get creative. Therefore, I’m going to 12 types of investors that you might be able to go to when funding a startup.