Our resident Business Mentor, Nichol Lachen of HBIC HQ, is here to share today’s #tuesdaytips on how to create your own business in 10 steps. If you are reading this, you’ve probably already got an idea for your business but don’t know where to begin. Starting a new business from scratch can be daunting, especially if you’ve never done it before. We are here to help! Follow this guide to learn the basics of building a business from scratch.
Before we get started, here are some facts:
“When you work on something that only has the capacity to make you 5 dollars, it does not matter how much harder you work – the most you will make is 5 dollars.”– Idowu koyenikan, “Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability”
Create Your Own Business in 10 Steps
1. Find Your Niche
- WHAT DO YOU LOVE TO DO? Find a way to turn your passion into profit. The best way to make money is to do what you love and find someone to pay you to do it.
- PHYSICAL OR DIGITAL? Determine if business will provide physical products, digital products, services to others, or any combination of the three.
- WHAT RESOURCES DO YOU HAVE? Use what you already have to minimize initial investment a
2. Research the Market
- IS YOUR BUSINESS NECESSARY? Determine if there is a market-need for your products or services BEFORE you begin. Identify where the market is and what it enjoys.
- IS THERE A GAP OR SUB-CATEGORY OF THE MARKET? To stand out and add more value, see if you can align your business to an exsisting gap or try to be a bigger fish in a smaller subcategory.
- HOW MUCH MONEY DOES THE MARKET PAY? Get an idea of the price your potential customers are prepared to pay for your product or service so you can realistically set goals.
3. Research Competitors
- WHO ELSE PROVIDES SIMILAR PRODUCTS/SERVICES? Identify your top competition in the market based on companies who provide similar services or products. How can you set yourself apart?
- HOW DO THEY BRAND AND MARKET THEMSELVES? Take note of where and how they market and brand themselves. Use this info to determine best practices when you start marketing.
- WHAT’S THE BRAND LOYALTY FOR THESE COMPANIES? Some niches are more particular and tend to fall in love with only a few brands (think Pepsi/Coke) Can your brand realistically gain customers?
4. Create Your Brand
- WHAT IS YOUR STYLE GUIDE? This is the primary visual DNA of your company’s branding. Think of the color pallet, tone of voice, and font you’ll use. Be consistant.
- IS YOUR LOGO EFFECTIVE? Make sure your logo reflects the style guide. It must be easy to read and easy to identify. Does it copy any logos? Does it tell what you do?
- IS YOUR LOGO VERSATILE? Make sure your logo will look good on all relevant social media and marketing platforms. Can it fit in both a square and rectangle shape?
5. Address Legal Issues
- DO YOU NEED A BUSINESS LICENSE? Check the laws in your local area to see if you are required to get a business license , obtain permits, or have insurance for your business.
- WHAT IS YOUR TAX PLAN? Make sure you have a way to track your finances including expenses and deductions, report income, and file special tax forms if needed.
- WILL YOU BE HIRING EMPLOYEES? If you will be hiring employees for your business you need to understand how payroll works, including tax and legal factors.
6. Create Income Goals
- WHAT ARE YOUR LIFESTYLE NEEDS? Will this business support you full time or part time? Determine how much you need to make in order to maintain or enhance your lifestyle.
- WHAT IS YOUR PRICE PER UNIT? Using your Market Research, set a realistic price for each unit you will sell. A unit can be a product, service hours, or digital download.
- HOW MANY UNITS TO SELL TO MEET LIFESTYLE NEEDS? Given the amount you need to live plus the amount per unit the marketing will pay, how many do you need to sell each week/month?
7. Produce Content
- WHAT KIND OF CONTENT DO YOU NEED TO PRODUCE? Create your physical or digital products. Service-providers typically rely on a website as their base, so articles and blog posts should be created.
- HOW MUCH DO YOU NEED FOR YOUR LAUNCH? You need enough products and/or website content for your launch so that costumers can have a nice first impression of your brand offerings.
- DO YOU HAVE A BACKLOG OF CONTENT? Whether your business is phsyical, digital, or services you should create and keep a backlog of content for easy updates for when you get busy.
8. Create a Presence
- HOW CAN CUSTOMERS FIND YOU? Will your business have a website? Will your business be on social media platforms? Will you have a brick-and-mortor location?
- WILL YOU BE INTERACTIVE? Will you be contributing to communities, forums, or groups (online or IRL)? Make sure your contributions speak the voice of your brand.
- DOES YOUR PRESENCE REFLECT YOUR STYLE GUIDE? Whether you need a sign for your brick-and-mortor or a top banner for your Facebook page, your presence should reflect your brand and sytle.
9. Create a Launch Plan
- WHAT KIND OF LAUNCH FITS YOUR BUSINESS? Understand the difference between a Soft Launch and a Hard Launch to dertemine which fits your business goals best, and then get to work.
- WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO LAUNCH? Now that you’ve created your initial content it is time to decide when you want to launch your business. Think of when works best for your market.
- WHAT ARE THE STEPS OF YOUR LAUNCH PLAN? You need to outline all the steps you will take for your launch plan and list out the marketing materials you will need to create or outsource.
10. Market Your Business
- WHAT MARKETING MATERIALS DO YOU NEED? Using your Launch Plan, make sure you have everything, including visuals, flyers, advertisements, and all other marketing elements.
- WHAT IS YOUR MARKETING STRATEGY? From simply posting on social media to gamifying for your customer experience, you need to know exactly what your strategy will be.
- WHAT ARE THE STEPS OF YOUR MARKETING PLAN? You need to outline all the steps you will take for you rmarketing plan including all media channels, strategies, and tools you need to use.
“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.”Walt Disney, Creator of Disney
Don’t Forget to Use Your Tools
They say, “work smarter, not harder.” Starting a business is no easy task, but you can make it easier on yourself by making the most of the tools and resources you have available. Here are some bonus tips to help you along the way.