Starting a business now could be a fantastic idea if you focus on customer needs and set up reliable distribution channels. You can refer to our previous post on “Ten Businesses to Launch…”
The CNM Business Incubator is open virtually to assist you with creating, launching and growing your business. Every Wednesday from 12:00 noon until 3:00 p.m., we’re “open” for business! Faculty and staff who own their own businesses are ready to coach you from idea to launch. Join us at https://cnm.webex.com/cnm.
Meeting number (access code): 809 504 022
Meeting password: jKscjR8XY58
Below are seven steps to ensure a successful start:
- Consider drafting a business plan. This document could be simple but effective if you take the time to research and map out your ideas. Make sure to research and confirm suppliers and a reliable distribution channel. The same goes for where and how you will be producing or selling your products and services.
- Test your idea. Before a full-blown launch, see if customers will purchase your product or service. You can operate for a while without actually registering your business.
- Know the market. Doing some pre-launch research via social media or email could be the ticket. Find out what your customers want/need.
- Understand your future customer. Customer behavior will change coming out of the coronavirus and recession. Will your product/service still be needed?
- Establish cash resources. As with any business, cash flow is critical. Be sure to plan for unexpected expenses when setting up. Also, set up a contingency fund that can be used when cash flow dries up temporarily.
- Choose the right business structure. If you register your business without choosing a legal structure, you will automatically be a sole proprietor, which means unlimited liabilities. That might hurt you. Research and consider an LLC or corporation if you have potential liabilities.
- Design a creative marketing plan. Most new businesses utilize social media. That’s smart if you measure results (KPIs – key performance indicators). You need to know what’s working and what is not. Consider low cost promotion that’s effective, and don’t think that you can rely on word-of-mouth to get your business going. Customers need to hear about you from a variety of sources.