More and more often, the path of entrepreneurship is calling out to people in the workforce. Whereas it was once far more common to try to be employed by a certain company or firm for the duration of your career, these days many people prefer to be self-employed. In other words, they want to create their own destiny, stand at the helm of their own ship. Just as landlines gave way to the smart mobile phones that are now in each of our pockets, the startup is the new way to go in the business world. In fact, if you look around your local area you’ll probably see more than a few entrepreneurs walking around.
Not all startups succeed, though—most fail pretty quickly. Have you yourself caught the startup bug? Want to make sure you don’t steer your ship up onto a sandbar? Here are some tips that may make all the difference.
Craft a Business Plan.
Your great idea is simply not enough to go the distance, no matter how great it is. To continue with the ship analogy, even the best craft on the seven seas won’t reach its destination without a map. Your business plan should go into detail about who your target audience is, how you plan to reach them, and specific goals that you will reach for each quarter and each year. Be clear about budgeting and stick to that budget. That means prioritizing and not spending on some flashier items. Don’t worry though, with a great business plan, the flashy items will almost certainly come later.
Ambition is great, but scale wisely.
So you want to be the best sandwich maker in your region? Or maybe you have plans to reinvent the concept of bicycling in all the nearby cities. Whatever your big, exciting new idea is—take it slow. Remember, too much too fast sinks the ship. If you promise the world to every caller who reaches out to you, but you can’t deliver on those promises, you can bet that that person will be a single-time caller. Don’t alienate customers before you can convert them into return clients.
Think About How to Reach Out to Potential Clientele.
Everyone is a potential customer—it’s up to you to reach them. That’s why you should leave no stone unturned when it comes to outreach. Social media posts are great, as are ads on local TV and radio. Also, don’t underestimate the power of well-placed outbound calls. If a client connects well with your sales rep, those outbound calls may be the best way to create a human bond that will drive business your way.
Make it Easy for People to Reach You!
If you have a cumbersome phone number that costs callers money, it’s unlikely that you’ll receive many inbound calls at all. A toll-free number (like 1300 numbers, for example, when it comes to Australian phone numbers) makes it easy for people to reach out. No one wants to pay to speak to a customer service or sales rep—with a toll-free number you make it literally free for callers to get in touch with you. Plus, a toll-free number allows you to choose a catchy phone number, which makes it easy for customers to remember how to find you.
SEO Is Your Friend, So Learn All About It.
Even if you have a toll-free number, it doesn’t do much if clients can’t find it, does it? SEO (search engine optimization) is the art of helping your website show up at the top of the search engine listing. A lot goes into SEO practices—using great keywords, creating strong backlinks, and more. To dominate Google, Bing, and more, it’s best to find an SEO expert to help you out.