Running your own business can be extremely lucrative. However, it can also be one of the most difficult things you are going to experience. Here are some tips which will hopefully help you take some of the pressure off and give you some help.
Find your niche
To make sure that your business succeeds in a crowded and cutthroat market, you need to have a niche. Whether you find that niche by creating the best “something” the world has ever seen, cheap Tex-Mex on 10th street, or fantastic customer service and a cool brand, you need something that sets you apart from all of your competitors. Without a good idea you make succeeding in business almost impossible.
Hire good help
Good employees make a huge difference in how well a company does. A good employee will pay for themself over time. When hiring an employee, several factors need to be considered:
- Experience – A key factor in whether to hire an employee is their experience. It’s even more important for a startup because they can provide advice on best standards and practices and can help guide you. Be aware that the most experienced hires are going to be the most expensive. Be sure that when hiring an experienced employee you do a thorough employment history verification so that you can double check and make sure that what they say matches up with what you find in their employment history.
- Potential – Potential in a hire is a great thing to bank on as a new business. High potential employees are cheaper, they will grow with your company and they can often be the most loyal. Hiring on potential can be a double-edged sword, however, as not every employee will live up to their potential
- Hard Skills – If your job requires certain skills, then there is no getting around this requirement unless you are willing to train on the job. As a small business or startup, you might not have that luxury.
- Soft skills – Can this person play nice with your other employees? Are they willing to compromise and communicate? How is their work ethic? These questions are important to know the answer to. They could have all the hard skills in the world, but if they are lacking in soft skills they will not fit in your company.
The next necessity for a successful business is to market well. You could have the best product in the world, but if nobody buys it, you will go out of business. You need a way to get customers in the door. Luckily, there are more affordable ways than ever to market. Gone are the days when you post an ad on the newspaper or tv and hope somebody sees it. Here are some surefire marketing strategies in today’s market:
- Social media marketing – Pay for ads on the social media site best suited for your customer demographic.
- Search engine ads – Use something like google ad words to artificially boost your ranking on search engines
- Boosted maps – Make sure your business shows up when people look in your area for your service
- SEO marketing – Using a combination of key-words, content, and links, boost your webpage on search engines.
- Traditional marketing – Pay for ads on tv, webpages, or even newspapers.
Run your social media
If you are a small business and don’t have the budget for traditional marketing, here are some things that you can do for free which still have an impact on your digital footprint:
- Claim your business – You need to make sure that your business is claimed on all major search engines and social media platforms. Make sure to check Google and facebook to make sure that you are running your media pages.
- Post content – Even if it’s not that much, keeping a steady stream of facebook posts about your business and writing a couple of blog posts/articles a month will boost your web page organically and provide some free online marketing.
Make sure to take these two steps to take advantage of any free marketing you can get.
Create a good reputation
Another free way to boost your company is to actively manage your reputation. Check the review platforms like Google reviews and Yelp and see what your customers are actually saying.
If your customers give you a good review, make sure to reply and thank them for it. If it is something negative, make sure to respond to that as well in a respectful and professional matter. If the negative review is something you can work on, then take to heart and improve your business, and then mention in the reply how you are taking steps to remedy this problem. If it is a bad review for no reason at all, then a clear response will still work wonders for your company’s image. Make sure to respond quickly in either case.
By taking the time to show your potential customers that you are a person and not an entity, they are more likely to support your company in the future.If any of these tips has helped in any way to grow and improve your business then this article has been a success.