The long journey to business success always starts with just a rough idea. That rough idea slowly grows and ends up polished into a solid plan. That solid plan gets money, branding and some marketing. Then it’s a business.
Here are five crucial steps you need to take, in order to take your rough idea from just that, to a fully fledged successful business.
Step one: Crunch the numbers
Numbers will help you understand the value of the business, and the worth of pouring all your energies for the perceivable future into it.
For example; “$10 billion is wasted every year, in delays in mining operations in Australia, and we have a fast and cost effective solution.” Sounds far more appealing than “We’ll make mines run faster”.
When you think about how to sell your idea to potential investors or early customers, try using these figures to help convey the message.
Step two: Understand and describe the problem you’re solving
Most people start a business to solve a unique problem. For example, hardware stores exist to help people fix household problems, such as leaky taps. Accounting software companies exist to solve financial problems in small businesses.
Lawyers exist to help clients with legal problems. Businesses offering cloud backup services are solving the problem of losing electronic files. The list goes on. What is the one big problem you and your business will attempt to solve?
This approach of starting with the problem has been proven by technology startup business success stories across the globe. Instead of worrying about the logo or your content marketing plan, start with the problem.
You should use this exact technique to win over investors or employees for your business as well; in fact, many use it to win customers too.
Step three: Start marketing your business
Your marketing starts with a brand. Your brand starts with a name. If you choose a bad name, nothing else after this point will help you. If your idea sounds like a joke to potential customers, it’s probably not going to help you get to success.
You need to remember that you will be competing against others. According to recent studies, there are over six million small businesses in the USA alone.
Most aspiring entrepreneurs take this aspect very haphazardly, and don’t put enough thought into it. They have lofty ambitions and just choose any name that comes along. However, this stage could be the most vital for your business future.
Step four: Buy the basics to get that business going
Unfortunately, there are a number of things you need to purchase, to get going. I always recommend buying just what you absolutely need, until you’ve created revenue and customers.
Below is just a partial list of what you may need to consider. Pick the ones you absolutely cannot live without, to save those costs towards business success.
- Domain name
- Website design
- Website hosting
- Smartphones or tablets
- Business insurance
- Computer equipment
- Accountancy advice
- IT consulting
- Business software
- Office equipment
- Office space
- Marketing advisory
- Sales materials
- Association memberships
- City or state licenses
- Business registration fees
- Company legal documents
The above points are only just some of the many hundreds of costs that you could incur over time. Don’t be disheartened though, start small with the very basics, and then build up what you need over time, once you have income and customers to offset the costs.
Step five: Continue to write and re-write your big picture
Don’t ever stop writing and rewriting your plans and future road map. These will continue to evolve over time, so it is worth revising regularly, so you have a clear direction.
A well-thought-out growth strategy, including a sound marketing approach will help you drive growth, and sway any potential partners or investors. Your road map should outline all the steps you will need to take to make your business an absolute success – leaving nothing to chance.
Your plan should outline all the risks you can imagine, as well as identifying potential obstacles and how you intend to overcome them.
Marketing, both online and offline, is so very important – make sure you have a completely separate marketing plan, which shows how you will attract and convert an audience into customers.
Ideally, you should also start planning your exit. Sounds crazy, however people want to know that there is an end game in sight. Saying you will work within the business forever is not an option for you or anyone else.
By following these above five critical steps, you should be on your way form simple business idea into creating a future with business success.
Don’t leave your first steps any longer – start right now! All the best of luck on your journey to a successful business.