Guest post by Sarah Bull of Economy Mom.
Congratulations, you’ve started your own small business! Launching a business was the hard part, now you have to think about how to grow it. What mistakes can you avoid to make sure your business grows efficiently and productively? Ted Vieira Consulting invites you to read on to find out how you can become the entrepreneur you always knew you could be.
First Things First
The gig economy has opened up a world of possibilities for anyone with an entrepreneurial side – and if you’ve discovered a platform that you could use for an extra source of income, it’s a good time to dive in! No matter which platform you decide to use, you should set up a business plan and sketch out a general budget. Should you ever decide to apply for grants or try to work with a business partner, you’ll be glad you have these documents!
Once you’ve worked out your business plan and budget, look into how you will handle your finances. You’ll need to set up payroll so that you’re earmarking funds for taxes, and the easiest way to do that is with a payroll app. A well-rounded app like Quickbooks allows you to set up direct deposit, it will remind you about paydays and tax deadlines, and you can handle payroll from wherever you are. The easier you can make important details like getting paid, the more you can focus on doing the work that generates that income.
Create an at-home workspace
While working at home may seem like a walk in the park, it’s actually a pretty hard thing to do. There are constant distractions, whether that be laundry or taking your pet out or making snacks for yourself. So, how do you keep yourself on task and focus on growing your business? Start off with setting office hours, such as between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. That way, you’ll commit to working on your business, instead of sporadically working when you feel like it.
Also, say goodbye to working in pajamas. Get dressed every morning like you’re going to the office. You’ll be surprised at how productive you are just by dressing the part. Having the right equipment in a designated workspace will also take you a long way in growing your business. Invest in a reliable laptop, desk, computer chair, printer, high-speed Internet and a good desk lamp.
Attend networking events
We know, networking isn’t the most exciting thing to do. In fact, some people are fearful of meeting strangers in a business setting. Mastering non-awkward small talk is a tough task. However, when you’re the owner of a small business, networking can be a great way to get word out about your business to possible investors or employees. Go into every networking event with a goal. Know what you’re doing there and what you want to accomplish. Starting conversations is something that some people struggle with, so instead of approaching a big group of people, try looking for a group of two or three people to join.
A small group will be less intimidating and more welcoming. If you start to run out of ideas for small talk, start talking about a project you’re working on, people will typically be interested in learning more about that. After the networking event, remember to follow up with the individuals you met, so the connection doesn’t lose steam.
Design a website
Having a website is paramount for any business, since this is the first thing customers or clients look for when it comes to utilizing your services. Shelling out for a high-end website may not be in the cards right now, but you can still build an engaging, sleek and professional website that offers a great first impression. Bonus points if you make your website mobile-friendly — remember, most people like to research and make purchases on their mobile devices. To ensure your website stays fresh and relevant, make a point to regularly add content through blogs, videos and photographs. Ted Vieira Consulting offers all the services you need to get your website up and running, from web design to content creation to brand building.
Utilize social media
Did you know that 82 percent of small business owners are using sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram to help grow their businesses? Social media has become a powerful tool over the last couple of years to help business owners reach their audiences and drive awareness about their companies. With your social media channels, you could not only spread the word about your new company, but also you would grow relationships with prospects. It’s also a cost-effective marketing strategy compared to traditional advertising.
Starting a small business is hard, and it can be scary, but with the right planning and tools to grow it effectively, you can be successful. By following the above tips, you’ll be able to reach your dreams of being a small business owner without all the stress that comes with it.
About the Author
Guest post provided by Sarah Bull of EconomyMom.com, a fantastic resource for information, tips and advice for business-minded moms to help them with their own business, side hustle, freelancing and more.