Here’s a guest post on starting a business by Mike Koehler of Smirk New Media. Mike specializes in helping companies promote and protect their online success. Follow Mike on Twitter. You can guest post as well! Read how to here.
Don’t Start With Nothing
It might make for a more interesting rags-to-riches story, but there’s no real reason to start your business from scratch, especially in an interconnected world where so many people have so much to offer. Here are the five key possessions that have enabled me to launch and establish a great business.
- A Group of Wise Advisers – As it says in Proverbs 19:20, get all the advice and instruction that you can, so you can be wise for the rest of your life. That’s especially true when you start a business from the ground up. These should be the people in your life who will be brutally honest with you. Let them play the role of potential client, investor or prospect. Draw from the wisdom they have in making decisions.
- Connections with Leaders in Your Industry – There is a good chance, whether you are a social media consultant like me or an accountant or a handyman, that there will be people in your city who do what you do but work for a large corporation. Connect with them and find out what they think about your industry and what you can do to succeed. They have secure jobs and internal customers, so they won’t see you as a competitor. They are also a great source for leads!
- The Latest Information About Your Business – No one wants to hear about what was hot in your business in 1993. Show potential customers you know the latest statistics about what kind of customers use your service and what they see in return. Memorize eight or 10 facts you can repeat at a moment’s notice.
- As Little Capital as Possible to Run Your Company Before You Grow – All I needed to start my business was a laptop, a website and some business cards. Total expense? Less than $500. There was a lot of temptation to get loans or credit cards, so I could get an office, buy ads and spend money before I was making it. Fortunately, there are many low-cost (or free) options for marketing (social media!), staffing (interns!) and materials. Once you grow, you can upgrade all of these. Your customers will notice because they speak to your success.
- Supportive and Prayerful Friends and Family – Even if you are looking at a blank prospect list, there are goals, vision and favor you can be praying for. Ask your friends and family to do the same. During the hard times, knowing that someone is lifting you up can get you through the day.
Starting a business is stressful enough. These are just a few things that will remove a lot of stress, and give you a stronger foundation.
Question: What are some possessions you think people should have when starting a business?