For every 100,000 Americans, around 320 launch new businesses every single month, equaling about 543,000 new businesses, each one beginning with a single idea. When making the decision to start a new business venture, the road can seem long and the first step impossible. Taking the first step is half the battle – the rest is all in planning and a motivated attitude.
Starting a New Business
Consider All Questions Carefully
Often the idea of a new business comes from the lack of a product or service that is needed, or a way to make an existing field better. As starting a business can sometimes be costly and time-consuming, the soon-to-be entrepreneur must first carefully analyze the various questions about the business idea:
It’s clear that there is much to consider when starting a business, but with a thoroughly prepared game plan, and by implementing the correct strategies, the next steps are possible. It’s important to consider also that a business degree, such as an MBA, can provide the foundation of business entrepreneurship and better prepare an individual for success in this endeavor.
Create the Perfect Business Plan
If the business will require investors or loans, a business plan is mandatory. This shows that there is a working strategy in place and explains exactly how the idea will be executed, including what kind of profit the entrepreneur is hoping to turn. A business plan is an essential roadmap for business success; this workable document usually provides a 3-5 year projection. It also provides a framework of the course the business intends to take in order to grow in reputation and profit. Many different types of business plan programs are available to take the guesswork out of what needs to be included, but as a rule, these plans should include an executive summary, business description, strategies for advertising and marketing, competitive analysis and acknowledgement of real competition within the field. Additionally, it should provide development plans, management and operations plans and any factors pertaining to the financials of the business, including startup costs, money needed, and profit forecasts.
Develop an Excellent Marketing Plan
Without proper marketing of the company, the business will fail. Customers and clients must know the business exists, and without marketing and advertising, the business will remain unseen and unprofitable. A good marketing plan will include an understanding of your target market and a competitive analysis of where the business will stand in the market. Understanding the customers is crucial; know who they are, what they want and track their patterns. Examine both demographics and psychographics, and take the time to see if there is a real need for the product or service among these customers. Make a list of the people who could benefit from the product or service, then figure out how to target them with advertising efforts.
Figure Out the Financials
The financial aspects of starting a business are often a deterrent to beginning the process in the first place, but there are plenty of ways to finance a startup.
- Continue working, if possible, while starting the new business. Make sure that there is no conflict of interest (particularly if the new business offers the same goods or services as a current position). Continuing to draw a salary can go a long way in the speed at which the new business can officially be launched.
- Incorporate another stream of income in the meantime. Offer skills and services as a contractor or freelancer so that money can be saved for the business, leaving less to be borrowed later.
- Reduce everyday expenses. Know that the business is going to require money and plan expenses now to reflect that. Alter budgets to allow more for savings. This seems obvious, but even a little here and there can make a large difference when it comes time to ask for a loan.
- Explore loan options. Loans may exist for which you aren’t even aware you are eligible, so do thorough research and attend loan meetings fully prepared.
If all aspects of the company start-up have been carefully considered and business and marketing plans have been created, the financial aspects should fall into line more easily. It’s important to remember that starting a business is not easy, but it can be accomplished with diligence and confidence.
If you are ready to take the first steps in creating your own business, start your journey the right way by gaining valuable business knowledge with a Masters of Business Administration degree from Our Lady of the Lake University Online. This valuable degree, offered through a convenient online platform, can be earned in partnership with your already busy work schedule. Our Lady of the Lake University, founded in 1895, is steeped in tradition and time-honored excellence, promoting a well-rounded education that completely prepares its students for a better career and future.