Setting up a new business is a plunge into the unknown and an act of faith. As with most start-ups, you will likely have to manage everything from producing your service or product to managing finances and sales.
This chaos requires order, which means it is important that you have – at the very least – a basic strategy to help you navigate the rough waters of a small business.
Here are five tips for setting up a new business:
You do not need to pay for a physical office
One of the most intimidating demands of a new business is to have a base somewhere. When your first few clients ask where you are based or where to send returns to, you need an address to give them.
Most start-ups begin as a home-run business and use a personal address for the business. This is far from ideal, however, and the age of Google Maps, throws up numerous privacy concerns.
Thankfully, there is an alternative. Virtual mailboxes allow you to assign your business address to a location as close or far from you as you need. They are mailboxes you can rent at a mail center (or similar site) and have numerous locations to suit all business requirements.
You can send or receive courier-delivered mail and manage it via a mobile app. This means you can keep your business and home life separate, and appear professional from the start. Virtual mailboxes are available with iPostal1.
Have your product and offer in place before you launch
One of the worst mistakes you can make as a new business owner is to publicly launch a brand without the product or offer in place.
Building a sustainable business model is about momentum and impeccable professionalism. Being overcome by eagerness and launching your company without a product smacks of desperation, and you will struggle to attract customers in the future.
It will also make life harder for you, because if your launch is successful and customers ask for products which you do not have, the waiting list will soon balloon out of control.
Do not jump on every marketing bandwagon, have a clear strategy
Similarly, do not be tempted into every marketing tactic you see paraded around YouTube by sales gurus and fellow business owners. These tactics might well work for those businesses, but it does not guarantee it will work for yours.
In fact, many companies ruin their marketing campaigns by trying to be overly clever, stacking tactics on top of other tactics in an effort to win more customers. It rarely ends well, and can be terminal for your brand.
You will instead want to create a clear marketing strategy that cuts its own path, rather than following anyone else’s.
Make yourself into an established business leader
A fantastic method for kick-starting your company and establishing yourself in your industry is by becoming a public personality. This does not mean you need to star on TV (unless you are asked to be a guest expert), but appearing on industry podcasts, writing blog articles and making yourself available for radio appearances can rapidly boost your credibility and establish you as a leader in your industry.
Do not hire full-time staff unless you absolutely have to
A final tip for starting a new business is not to rush into hiring full-time staff unless you absolutely have to. The more staff members you have, the more people there are to pay, the more responsibility on your shoulders, and the more pressure you pile on your business to succeed.
If you do need an extra hands-on deck, hiring temporary freelancers is a great way to maximize productivity without incurring significant costs or added responsibility.