There are many written and unwritten working laws at your current job that are affecting you. You might be at the point where you’re sick of following working laws and are ready to branch off on your own. Instead of worrying about registering as self-employed for taxes and health coverage, you need to focus on making some money with your business idea. This is why we are here to help you get started.
If you’re looking for how to start your first business then this post is a rough guideline for what you can do starting right now!
Think of a business plan.
What will your business be? Will it be a service business or will you sell goods? You need to think of a business plan and get something in writing. Now don’t let this scare you away. I’ve put together business plans for school that were about 100 pages long. You don’t need to do this for your first small business. You just need to consider some of the following ideas in your business plan:
- Definition of business.
- Where will money come from?
- Short term business goals.
- Long term business goals.
- Risks involved.
Every business needs to have goals and to be aware of the competition. If you blindly walk into a business venture, you might walk out broke. I don’t want any of you guys going broke on me.
Brand your business.
Branding is more than just registering as self-employed for tax purposes. Branding is difficult to define these days. It involves everything that you and your business does. From responding to comments to having an amazing blog logo. Branding is everything that you do and how you do it.
According to Escape From Cubicle Nation, branding your business/yourself involves the following:
- Take a stand.
- Make people feel.
- Invoke trust.
- Solve a problem.
If you can manage to do all four of the above, then you’ll build a strong brand around your business. Don’t stress because by default you should be doing all four in your every day life. You should take a stand by having a clear business philosophy. You should make people feel by conveying how passionate you are. In turn your customers will trust you if you over deliver always. In the end you’re bound to help others solve a problem.
Create a website.
You’re going to want to have a home base. If you plan on starting a pure blog then you’re clearly going to need a website (hosting, design, theme). I don’t have much to say on this part because I hate the behind the scenes website work. In the past I have outsourced this work so that I can focus on what I enjoy doing (writing articles and helping others). You might have to spend a few bucks here but it’s usually a one time upfront cost.
Find paying clients.
This should be step number one. For the sake of not throwing you off with your first business idea, I want you to get comfortable with everything before you start looking for clients. Once you have your business idea up and running you need to decide on how you will earn money and how you will find paying clients. Who will pay you for your services? Finding paying clients is the strongest litmus test for deciding if your business has any legs to stand on. As they say, “if you’re going to fail, then fail fast.” If you can find paying clients relatively quickly then you may be on to something with your business. If you can’t then it means you might have to tweak something or switch gears.
Think about funding.
How will you fund this new business venture? These days you can start any small business online for less than a $1,000 so the funding should be coming from your savings account. If you’re going to want to start a business with a physical location then you need to look into funding. I have personally not gone through this process myself so I can’t offer much assistance. I can recommend that you start off by trying out one of the common options for small business funding: bank loan, angel investor, or venture capitalist.
Work your butt off.
Sorry but this step is mandatory. Everything else is just a minor detail. I find that in life you get what you put in. If you’re lazy with your business, then your business will show. Customers and readers can tell when you’re lazy. No matter how many books are written on the being able to work a few hours weekly and generate passive income, you’re still going to have to hustle hard with your new business. It’s just the reality of life. If you’re not willing to work your butt off then you need to close this post right now and consider other options. The amazing part is that for the first time in your life you will enjoy working hard because you’ll be working on projects that you’re passionate about.
The post that inspired me originally was 7 steps to starting a business over at Investor Junkie. If you enjoyed this piece then I strongly urge you to check out the other articles in this series:
Being a Freelancer Pros and Cons
Being An Employee Pros and Cons
How You Can Moonlight Your Way to Success
I want to know what you think: what worries you about starting your first business?
(photo credit: certs)