Building a business takes passion, guts, and zeal. You can’t just sit back and wait for something good to happen you must go out there and make it happen. By the way, it does not matter how much money you have in the bank. This might sound counterintuitive, but having too much can be a hindrance.
The reason is simple, having too much money causes you to take it for granted and this can lead to disaster. Instead, you want to be frugal. Agonizing over every dollar you spend to make sure it is the right decision. With that in mind, here is a quick rundown of the tips you need to keep in mind when growing your business from nothing to something great.
Start with the Customer
Most businesses get into trouble because they have lost sight of what their customers want and how the business fulfills that need better than anyone else. This might sound simple, but you would be surprised how many business owners cannot answer this question. What problem do you solve for your customers? Doing so forces you to step back and think about your business from the perspective of your customers.
It also helps you to see where the potential blind spots lie. Maybe it is the threat of a new competitor or it could be a flaw in your own product or service. Either way, you want to start with your customers if you want to grow to be something great.
Have a Goal, and Know How to Get There
For many small businesses, the goal is to just keep the lights on. Granted survival is important but we should aspire to something more. If not, then you run the risk of adopting a ‘foxhole’ mentality and this could be detrimental in the long run.
Instead, set a 1,000-day goal for your business. Don’t choose something too easy, but at the same time, you will want to break down the steps required to reach this goal. These will become your signposts along the way giving you an idea of you are off course in some way.
Now, this is not meant to be a six-month strategy setting exercise – you’re a small business, not General Electric. Just identify two or three long-term goals and then break down the actionable steps you need to take to reach those goals on a yearly, quarterly, and monthly basis. By putting this on paper, you will have a roadmap to lead you along the way.
This not only means with your online presence but also in how you build your business offline as well. Let’s face it building a business is as much about maintaining relationships with current customers as it is about finding new customers.
Online, you want to make sure that everything you do can be plugged into larger social networks. It doesn’t matter if you make wedding cakes or build treehouses, allow your customers and their friends the chance to see, and comment, on what you are doing.
Offline, you want to focus on building business by referral. This means teaming up with other business owners, getting involved in your local community and in organizations such as BNI, as well as reaching out to key influencers. Referrals is a cost-effective way to reach a larger audience – just remember, you need to give to get.
No Better Time Than Now
Don’t wait to get the perfect product or service. Granted you want your business to do good work, but sometimes you need to start with good enough and then work on making it better as you go.
Doing so will help you to get started without burning money along the way. In addition, it can help you to make money as you go. Also, you can use each iteration to get feedback from your customers in real time.
Going back to my first point this will force you to understand what your customers are looking for. You might be surprised as customer feedback might take you in a completely different direction. So, remember there is no better time than now. Get your product ready and get it to market as you can always make it better along the way.
There you have it; these simple tips will help you to build your business from nothing to something without burning thousands of dollars on unnecessary costs.