How to Start a Business
If you are wondering how to start a business without a ton of upfront capital, it can be a bit tricky to figure out. Much of how you start your new business depends on the niche and industry as certain businesses cost a lot more to start up.
First, you should figure out how much capital is needed to start your business. The more funds you have, the better your options for business start-up. You may consider applying for a loan at your local financial institution but never dedicate funds to the business that you are not prepared to lose in regards to your own savings. Decide what kind of business you would like to start, and do thorough research in that field. Look for competitors and learn how they carry out their business. Take special notice of areas that you see are in need of improvement and come up with a unique method you can use to market. In other words, try to fill a “hole” in the market.
Put together a plan of total action. Document in detail the steps that come in between yourself and the primary goals of starting a business. Try to accomplish each step on your list before going forward with your start-up. Determine what type of business structure you will utilize. Will you need just an office space to accommodate your place of business or will you need a commercial building to operate? Maybe you can actually work from your own home office. Decide whether you will hire employees and how many will suffice for your initial start-up. Decide what status is needed such as sole proprietorship, corporation, LLC or partnership. You should be able to differentiate the filing status by visiting the IRS.gov website or speaking with a tax professional.
Once you get these details out of the way, then it’s time to get a business operating license which can be acquired through your state or local tax assessor’s office. You will also need to apply for a Federal Tax Identification number with the IRS for tax purposes. Once you have your business license and tax ID, you can begin your business operations. Considering that your start-up supplies and overhead along with advertising were included with the initial start-up capital, the only steps that should be left is marketing and advertising your business.
It makes sense to write down your goals at the beginning so that you can always look back to see if you are still on track for success!
Ten ways you can build content to market your website or business
One of the huge goals of a entrepreneur is to generate traffic and provide value to potential customers and clients. By providing great content you are offering a free means of showing your expertise and value.
1. Build a blog. According to Hubspot, websites that have blogs get twice as many inbound links, 400 percent more indexed pages, and a more than 50 percent increase in traffic, compared to websites without blogs. Search engines and people love blogs these days.
2. Join the conversation with Community Forums. A forum is a discussion site on a relevant subject, hosted and moderated by you, which adds authority, content, and traffic to your website. The registration process to join can give you a very targeted email list.
3. Curation, the most efficient content. Curation is humanly aggregating, filtering, and re-posting the best-of-the-best content on the web, relative to your product or service area. This shows your knowledge and positions your company as a thought leader.
4. Win with engaging contests. Not a new idea, but when used creatively, can entice new prospect traffic and backlinks to your site. People these days love to submit stories, vote on other entries, and receive the recognition of even small prizes or product rewards.
5. Traditional publishing out, self-publishing in with eBooks. You don’t need a real book as a base for electronic books, as people now prefer something akin to a “white paper” on steroids. It’s just another way to demonstrate credibility and attract traffic.
6. Keep them engaged with eNewsletters. These are regular updates, usually monthly, via website and email that help with customer retention, and again remind your customers that you are the expert in your industry. Supplement text here with video and audio.
7. Widgets and badges. A widget is a mini-app that displays or updates data either locally or on the web – to share something of value and interest. A badge is a simple graphic designed for fun, to show support, or promote certain standards online. All highlight you.
8. Look like an expert with Interviews. Here we are talking about interviewing industry experts. By having frequent conversations with experts in your industry, you rank yourself among the top, and show you are connected. You are the company you keep.
9. Videos, stories in motion. Simple videos, less than five minutes in length, you can do yourself and upload to YouTube for display on your website, can turn a blasé idea into a winner. Keep the atmosphere relaxed and fun, to increase traffic, and maybe even go viral.
10. Provide convenience through podcasts. A podcast is basically a non-streaming webcast, usually audio only, for those who want the convenience of downloading and listening via iPod or mobile phone while commuting or working out at the gym. It’s cool.
There are a lot more items of content that could be on this list. But don’t let the number overwhelm you. You don’t need to tackle them all – just pick a few that you think you can do well, and consistently. The key is new content on a regular basis to attract the attention of search engines and new customers.
Most importantly, don’t wait until you have perfect content. Start creating content today. The more you create, the more momentum you build, and better you will get.
Who is my target market?
This is huge you need to determine who you will target with your product or service
What Is My Gameplan? A business plan is nice but market research and a well defined marketing plan is priceless.
How Will I Execute?
Execution must be strategic as well as well researched
How Will I deliver Value?
A uYou need a unique form of value or to show your customer or client how you solve their problem
Is There A Market For My Product?
If there has never been a product like yours before maybe there is a good reason. If your product is extremely innovative Market Research could prove priceless.
"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race"
When you are building your business a gameplan is a must. You do not however want to be the constant planner if you never take action you cannot hope to achieve what you truly want to.
Here are some ways to get started building your business today.
1. Target a Niche Or Sub Niche
2. Have a gameplan for how to monetize
3. Be Genuine
4. Lay out a marketing strategy
Layout a strategy and you will be on the way to achieving success.
I am enclosing a preview of my upcoming
Linkedin Marketing book in a word document hopefully all who see enjoy. Thank you for your feedback. best. Jason
You own a small business so you are trying to sell your products or service but how you appear different in a herd of other small businesses. Here are some ways you can show your true value to potential and future customers.
1. Free Content
Give free tips and advice in exchange for the opportunity to build customer loyalty.
2. Show Your Personality
You need to be real and be genuine peoples trust is vital to building your business.
3. Offer Special Prices or Package Products Together.
A great SEO or search engine optimization strategy is vital to moving your site up the ranks. The question then is what should I do to get my site seen?
Below are 5 great ways to improve your sites visibility.
1. Link Building
It takes time and effort and patience to do this right. Comment on others blogs, do guest posts and be active in forums related to your niche.
2. HTML And Site Design
Does your related niches appear in your title tag? Do you have a title tag? Do you have a metatag and footer tag?
Whether original or professionally written you need at the minimum a blog to offer value to drive visits.
4. Social Media
Interaction and relationships the friendships and partnerships you will build are priceless to branding.
This helps search engines read your site and with the robots.txt file helps them crawl it better.
So there you have 5 ways you improve the SEO of your site starting today.
When it comes to implementing any kind of marketing in your small business, ask yourself this - "Will this activity impact my bottom line?"
Specifically what is your goal with any kind of marketing activity that you are trying to execute? It is so easy for us as online marketers to get wrapped up in search engine marketing, social media, SEO, among a whole host of activities that we are told we must do in order to live the dream.
But if you step back and reflect for a moment, do all these things actually help you and your business? Or are they just more of a distraction? Are they taking away from your actual business that you need to be working on? Are they nice to have but not necessary?
Okay, so take this as an example.
Search engine optimization. Ultimately, it is important to any business because this is a large part of how people finding you. Building backlinks will always be important, too. However if you want to avoid any future Google Slaps, Dances or whatever someone wants to call the next big algo change, then you'll want to future proof your site. Instead of putting all your focus and energy into building just backllinks put your focus into providing quality content. Real content that real people want, not crap that not even a search engine can understand.
Another example is social media. So many people are told they need these automation tools and software in order to get 10 million Twitter followers. That's great. That's nice but again is this just serving as a distraction?? Do you actually need this tool in order to do something?
I fell into the trap of buying and learning. It's a never ending cycle until one day you wake up and realize you havne't gotten anywhere. (And an empty bank account!).
The two concepts I just talked about are methods for achieving the same end goal - getting traffic to your website so people will buy your stuff. Bottom line.
Often times we get so caught up in the hype of online marketing that we lose sight of what actually matters. Earning money. If you're activites don't focus directly on you making sales, outsource it. You know your business better than anyone else. You can find people to do the $5 dollar problems that waste five hours of your time (Fiverr.com anyone?)
If you're really wanting to move your business to the next level, then do an 80/20 analysis Tim Ferriss style. If you do this, you may be amazed as to what you actually will discover. What items are part of your small business marketing matrix that are just resource hogs?