Starting your own business can be equal parts exciting and daunting. Many have started and failed when it comes to running their own business. This should not stop you from pursuing your passions though. As billionaires like Jeff Bezos have said before, you must be passionate about what you do to succeed. Whether you are starting up your own air compressor firm, digital marketing company, or cosmetic breast augmentation surgery practice, there are a few bits of information that you will need first. Have a look at the following list that has been compiled to gather some information on what steps you should take first when starting up your own business.
Work out You Core Business Proposition and Offerings
The first thing you must decide is what your business will actually be. Ideally, it should be something you are passionate about. You must also be skilled in the field that you choose. When deciding on core offerings, make sure that you are not stretching yourself too thin. There should be a clearly defined scope of what you offer. Finding your niche can be one of the most difficult decisions when starting up your own business. Once you have this clearly defined, however, it will save you a lot of trouble in the future. No one wants to take on too much and not be able to deliver a great service or product as a result.
Decide on a Business Name
Deciding on a business name is one of the more difficult decisions. Your business name will stick around with you for years to come, so it is essential to get it right. Ideally, it should encompass the nature of your business so that individuals can identify what the business is about without having any prior knowledge of that brand. It is important to note that a name must not be too specific, where it doesn’t allow for growth in the future. For example, if you are wanting to open up a cosmetic surgery, you wouldn’t name the business ‘Eyelid Surgery Incorporated’. You would look for a business name that could allow you to offer new services such as Botox or dermal fillers, for instance, in the future. Furthermore, entrepreneurs must ensure that their business name is not already taken, by checking and registering the company name through ASIC.
Register for an ABN
Not only do you need to register your business name through ASIC, but you will also need to apply for an Australian Business Number (or ABN). The process is extremely simple and can be completed online. You will need to register details such as the business address, a tax file number, contact details, and accept the terms and conditions. Once you have your ABN, you are free to get started on developing your oil free air compressor service, your clothing store, or your electrical company.
Get Working on Your Branding
There are two ways to do this; you can pay someone to create a branding strategy for you, or you can make one yourself. There are advantages and disadvantages to both. Whilst doing your own branding can be cheaper, you may not achieve the results you were wanting. Online resources such as Canva as a great way to create company logos, templates and reports with consistent and clear branding. If you would like to have a branding strategy set up for you by a professional, doing so can sometimes result in a better outcome. Branding and marketing professionals have years of experience and will conduct thorough brand research.
Draw up your Terms and Conditions
It is imperative to make sure that legally, you are covered under a clear set of terms and conditions. This document will keep both you, and your clients or customers, legally bound to the terms agreed upon. If you are unsure what to include, reaching out to a local solicitor may be a reasonable idea.
Update Your CV and Proposal Letter
Make sure that you are ‘elevator-pitch’ ready. Have your CV ready with all of your qualifications, experience and achievements. It is advisable to also have a proposal letter or template ready to go for when engaging new customers or clients. Having one will save you a lot of time in the long run.
Set up a Portfolio of Past Work
Clients will usually want to see examples of past projects or work. Having both a digital and printed portfolio will come in handy for when you start pitching to new customers. Make sure that the portfolio has consistent branding, and that the work that is displayed in it are your finest projects to date.
Create Your Pricing Packages and Strategy
Pricing can often be a sensitive topic. Therefore, it is important to have a clear and readily available pricing system or package on display for all of your potential customer base to view. You do not want to make clients feel that they have been ripped off by having unclear pricing.
Create an Accounting System
Invoicing can sometimes be tedious, but programs like XERO make it easy. Other simple invoicing apps include Wave, Invoice 2 Go and Zoho Invoice. Make sure to set reminders to send invoices out to avoid any late payments from customers.
Create a Website
These days, having a website is essential for any business. Website developers and digital marketing services will help to create an eye-catching and visible website for all of your clients to see. Having a website is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic, with restrictions limiting many bricks and mortar transactions.
Set Up a Work Email
Whilst it is quite a simple task to set up a work email, it is important to set one up and make sure that it gets monitored. Email is the preferred communication form for many clients and customers. It provides a medium for people to enquire and raise concerns, therefore this step cannot be missed.
Spread the Word
Digital search marketing services, social media marketing and other advertising campaigns will help to get the word out about your new business. Word of mouth is also invaluable, so make sure that any interactions or transactions are positive for all parties.