After the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of people have lost hope of finding regular jobs. People were laid off all over the world, many large corporations went under, and even people that had what were considered safe careers found themselves struggling to find a new job. Many people have turned to pursuing their passions and turning them into businesses. Some have had incredible success with this, but many others were not as lucky.
Whether you are starting a business because you lost a job or because you have always had an entrepreneurial spirit, it doesn’t really matter. What matters is how well you are able to navigate the problems that come your way and how intelligently you are able to develop your business to ensure it remains profitable in the long run. If you want to get started with a business that will create wealth for you and one that you will enjoy being a part of, here are some important things to keep in mind.
1. Know What You’re Getting Into
A lot of people feel very passionately about a lot of different things. It could be cars, it could be a sport, it could even just be baking bread. In reality, that passion doesn’t mean they are knowledgeable about it: it just means they really like the idea of being able to do that thing or be in a business related to that dream. You need to pair your passion with good market research to better understand how deep the water really is.
Some things that look very attractive on the surface and that are really very profitable might require a lifestyle that you aren’t willing to adopt just to make some more money. Running a business is a lot of work, and the fruits of your labor are not always immediately seen.
Some things that look very attractive on the surface and that are really very profitable might require a lifestyle that you aren’t willing to adopt
Before you invest your money, time, and energy into the business, consider doing a trial run. This is going to be exactly the same as what you would have done had you launched the full-scale version, but this is just smaller. This is a great way to learn first-hand how the customers and clients will react to your offering.
With small-scale trials, you have the option to change a lot of things in the business and try all those different combinations out. You could change the products, the services, the prices, you could even have trials at different locations and see what works best for you. You get to modify each approach and test it in real life.
This will naturally add to your expenses, but it will give you accurate information about what works and what doesn’t and what you need to do to succeed in a particular situation.
3. Study Competition
Similarly, study the people already in the business that you are looking to get into. Try to understand what they are doing right, what they are doing wrong, and what you can do better than them. For instance, if you are starting off with a small budget, but you are getting into an industry that is extremely competitive and requires a lot of marketing, it would be unwise to enter such a competition. At the same time, if you have a knack for technical things and engineering, and you can use this to your advantage in something like construction or architectural design, then you would have a natural advantage over the competition.
Some businesses introduce new to the world products. These are products that are completely revolutionary, like when desktop computers were introduced for the first time or when smartphones were launched for the first time. In this case, there is no competition that you can study to gauge how well the product or service will be received. In such a case your best option is to study similar trends, for instance how well people adopt new technology, but even then it is a risky process.
Study the people already in the business that you are looking to get into. Try to understand what they are doing right, what they are doing wrong, and what you can do better than them
4. Find The Right People
There is only so much that you can do on your own. Initially, you might feel like you can manage all by yourself, but do you see any 6 or 7 figure company that relies solely on one person? Unless you are a very niched consultant that only takes one client at a time, it won’t be possible. You need to have experts with you. People who are better than you in their respective departments who can come together in your business and help materialize a vision that you all share.
Today, hiring is much easier and much more cost-effective than what it used to be in the past. If you are looking for people who have jobs that can be performed remotely, then you can make hiring staff a whole lot easier by hiring remote workers. You can start by finding remote freelancers who can help in the work and start working with. If you feel that this is the right person, you can bring them on board with a long-term contract or even offer a full-time position at the business.
The great thing is that you get access to people from all over the world. You are no longer limited to the people that you can find within your city or people that are willing to relocate to your city. If you live in an expensive area, hiring people online will save you a lot of money, since you can get much better prices online. You also save money on office space, office expenses, and all other things associated with running a big in-house team.
There is only so much that you can do on your own. Initially, you might feel like you can manage all by yourself, but do you see any 6 or 7 figure company that relies solely on one person?
Marketing in any way, shape, or form will help you. Too many people stress about digital marketing and how traditional marketing isn’t working anymore. For a small business that is just trying to learn the ropes, it makes no difference. You should go for whatever you can get and just focus on the fact that people should be hearing your name. The internet has opened up so many ways for businesses to reach out to the entire world nearly for free. Make use of it and do what you can to market yourself.
If you can’t afford a lot of marketing, get it done personally. Cold call people, meet them, hand out brochures, send out emails, create free online spaces, but anything you can to make sure people know that you exist. It’s just about making yourself known. When you start to grow a bit, you can start to worry about what the most effective approach is for getting people to know you and your business.
6. Get Momentum
Passion will only get you so far. Soon you will need tangible resources to invest in the business. You need space, equipment, people, marketing, accounting, digital presence, and so much more, and that all requires capital. If you have some savings or a friend who is willing to finance your project, then that’s great, but most people just have the idea and nothing to finance it with.
You might be struggling with a poor credit score and thinking that you won’t be able to secure any lender with your financial history. Fortunately, you can use personal loans for bad credit as they are much easier to access. Even if the loan isn’t large enough to get a mortgage on business property, at least it will be some cash with which you can get the business setup. As you grow the business, you can start to talk to other lenders and look into more extensive financing options.
Personal loans are notorious for having high-interest rates, but when you are investing in a business, it isn’t the same level of risk. With these loans being used for business, you never know how much revenue they will generate as soon as the business gains traction. It could be no problem at all to pay back the loans if you use them properly.
Personal loans are notorious for having high-interest rates, but when you are investing in a business, it isn’t the same level of risk
7. Study The Market
The market today is unlike what it was just a few decades ago. Today’s trends are so fleeting that many people don’t even notice them. With so much competition, people are so caught up in their own life that they don’t notice what’s happening outside of their business, what competitors are doing, and what is changing in their industry, that one day they’ll only realize they have been left far behind in the race.
Try to keep yourself abreast of the market trends and upcoming developments in your business as much as you possibly can. Even if you make the wrong move, you want to be the first to learn from that mistake and adjust accordingly. Network with the right people, learn about emerging technologies, and get involved in activities that will keep you on your toes and in the loop.
Remember, we are in a time today where the world is more interconnected than ever before. When you place an ad on Facebook or have a new post on Instagram about your new product, keep in mind that people all over the world are able to see this ad. Even if they aren’t able to buy right now, they might still be interested. You might not be able to sell internationally right now, but studying marketing will give you critical insights into which directions you should grow in. Studying marketing is not just about knowing what your competition is doing today, it’s also about knowing what you should do in the future.
8. Invest In Professionals
There are going to be different stages of the business where you will need help. Whether that is finding a new commercial property to expand, getting through a licensing process, applying for a patent or filling out some documents to secure a loan, or anything else. Most business people will not be doing these things on a daily basis, so rather than risking making a mistake, it’s best to hire a consultant, someone who can handle it a bit better than yourself.
A lot of people make the mistake of hiring people they already know. They heard that a distant relative is a realtor, so they will get in touch with him rather than hiring a local expert. At the end of the day you need work done, and you need good quality work that will help you grow more. Rather than saving money by doing it on your own or hiring a less pricey alternative, do it right the first time and get the best that you can afford.
9. Focus On The Customer
In every industry, competition is fierce. Gone are the days when the price was a differentiating factor. Today, products and services aren’t priced that far apart. Even in the case that there is a price difference, customers, especially those with a higher propensity to spend, will always choose quality over low prices. In fact, people will rather not spend than buy something that they aren’t completely comfortable with.
For businesses, this means that this is the time to focus on the customers’ experience and provide the highest quality of service that they possibly can, whether that is going out of your way for a customer in your physical store, or spending some extra time designing your app to get the smoothest user experience possible. Focus on over-delivering to the customer in the areas that are most important to them, and you won’t have to worry about pricing yourself competitively.
This is the time where people don’t want to consume products or services that have been produced at a mass scale. They don’t want to be just another person in line to get the next product coming off the production line. They want to know who designed the product, what was going through their mind when designing it, why it was made, where it was made, why certain materials were used for this product rather than other materials, and tons of other questions. These are all things that customers in the past couldn’t care less about, but today, it is all about the quality of the interaction between the customer and the business and how much meaningful information is being exchanged between the two.
One of the big reasons that individuals and businesses are moving toward video is that it provides a level of engagement that other mediums cannot. Similarly, customers also prefer video because it lets them ‘be there’ in that moment and experience things first hand. Try to find ways that your business can become more interactive with customers and potential buyers, and invest in that.
People don’t want to be just another person in line to get the next product coming off the production line. They want to know who designed the product
11. Eco System
In the past, products were just products. They were produced and sold as individual commodities, and people were quite happy with buying a single product when they had the need to. Today, products are still individual products, but they are also designed to be used as part of a larger ecosystem. This is an entire range of products that are designed to be used in tandem. This strategy hit two birds with one stone.
First, the customer gets an incredible experience because the products flow together seamlessly and the user experience is unbelievable. The second benefit is that the customer buys more. They might have only wanted to buy one thing or had the need to buy one thing, but when they see other products as well, they might as well buy that too from the same manufacturer.
This is very common in the tech industry, but it is also becoming more common in things like food, travel, education and SaaS products. Businesses, or even just affiliate sellers, will pair products with other products or services and sell things as a bundle. This is a great way to get long-term retention from customers. When they are so heavily invested in your products, it is unlikely they would move to a different manufacturer and replace everything that they own.
12. Future-Proof Yourself
People have been in the cryptocurrency space for over a decade now. It’s surprising to think that just a few years ago this was something that was never taken seriously and people laughed at the idea of mining a currency from a computer. Today, that industry is worth billions, and many people who got in at the right time are worth the same amount.
For businesses, there is a lot to come in the future, including artificial intelligence, the metaverse, digital currencies, and much more. Investing in these things today will give you the chance to be in the best position possible when these things become mainstream in just a few years. Future-proofing doesn’t have to be your central focus, but it should be somewhere on your priority list if you want to be in business for many years to come.
Regardless of which industry you want to get into, there’s certainly someone who’s been there before you, and there have been many who have been successful in the very thing that you are trying to do. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel, you just need to learn what works and what doesn’t, and understand how best you can incorporate this knowledge into your own business. Keep things simple, get some great people to work with you, and be persistent in your endeavor. The best way to be successful is to never stop trying.