When you are starting a business you will experience many difficulties and stressful times, as well as fun. You can overcome difficulties if you address some crucial points right at the beginning of the business.
Given below are points that, if you follow them properly, can help in laying a solid foundation for the startup.
- Understand your idea
This sounds obvious as you can never start a business without an idea or a vision. You will be surprised however to know that a number of startup founders believe that they have a good idea, but they find it extremely difficult to explain it.
Founders often face difficulties in explaining their ideas and vision to others or they explain it in different ways when asked by different people. This sends mixed messages to the potential investors as well as to potential customers and it can have a negative effect on your business.
Keeping your basics clear like who you are, what you are doing and why is extremely important. When you understand your idea well you can state your purpose which is increasingly important for all organisations, including startups.
IdeaSpies is a platform that encourages startups to post their ideas simply as “elevator pitches” so they can be well understood. This is a free service.
2. Set out the values of your startup
It is important that you specify the values of your startup. You need to set a few core values which will be helpful for you, as well as for any supporters and employees, to understand the behaviours you are encouraging in your startup.
These values will be important when you are thinking of expanding the team and the business, as well as how it is explained. Values help in keeping people connected with your business moving in a similar direction.
3. Understand the target market
When you have a good idea, can express it well and the core values have been set, you should do research to determine your most likely customers.
You should first try to understand what potential customers think about your idea and how they could use it.
You also need to conduct research to understand if similar products or services are already present in the market so you have a clear understanding of the competition. Narrow down the research to a particular group and gather important demographic information like gender, location, age, job and income range.
There are many ways to do research depending on your idea.
4. Brand your startup
When the vision of your business has been clearly explained and the target market has been identified, you will need to consider branding.
Your brand is related to the vision for your business and the core values that you have set. You need to consider the tone and the visual language Ensure that it can be identified easily and is beautiful and eye-catching. It’s not easy to attract attention in a crowded marketplace.
A good brand connects with people at an emotional level, they feel good when they buy the brand.
5. Share your idea
Ensure that you are active on social media to get as much free publicity as possible. Set up social media accounts for your startup that connect to a website. Ensure your website is mobile friendly mobile friendly as many people prefer using smartphones instead of desktops or laptops.
6. Do your sums
A financial analysis is an important part of starting a business. You need to add the expenses: overheads, the projected cost of wages, purchases and everything else your startup will need. You also need to make assumptions to estimate the income needed to cover expenses and make a profit. At least a 3 year budget for income and expenses is suggested to survive in a competitive market.