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8 important things to know before starting a business

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Many young individuals who are eager to have a business startup to their name might think that all they need to start a good company is a great idea. The real truth is, everyone has an eight-figure idea laying somewhere in their thoughts but can not execute it because they don’t have a well-written plan on how to execute and grow it to eventually become a successful startup.

This is why it is hard for some to get investors to invest in their ideas because the majority of these investors know where to throw their money into with minimum risk.

 

The majority of investors will never throw money on ideas alone. You must be able to convince them with something tangible before getting into the room with VCs or Angel Investors who will be willing to invest in your startup.

So in this article, we shall be looking at eight things you need to know about running a successful business.

 

1. Don’t waste time romancing your idea

A lot of people waste a good amount of time trying to get a perfect idea for their business before they launch it. The truth of the matter is, you will never find a “perfect idea”. Experts suggest that an average human being processes over 6000 thoughts a day, now imagine the different ideas you will have running through your mind all day. Rober H. Schuller said in his book that we might have an idea that seems so nice to us and the next morning, it turns to something else we are not entered in.

Just as you have one, another will seem so much appealing to you. The discipline in starting a business lies in picking one idea at a time and sticking with it.

Don’t wait till you get it all right, starting a business is always filled with many uncertainties but as you start, you will begin to get more clarity.

You should ask yourself the following questions

  • What problem does my idea solve?
  • Will people be willing to pay for my idea?
  • Do I have a sizeable market for my idea?
  • How long am I willing to stay committed to this idea?

2. Who are your target audience?

One thing you should know is that you can sell to everyone, there’s always those who will never buy from you even if you sell your goods or offer your service for free and there are those who would break the bank just to buy from you. It is a question of how relevant it is to them. This is why you will need to define who your target market is, and since you are just starting out you may not have enough resources to market to everyone.

3. Do you have a Unique Selling Proposition (USP)?

A unique selling point is what stands you out from other people selling the same products or offering the same service in the marketplace. No matter how close your business is to another there must be something you should be doing that others are not doing.

4. Do you need a business partner/ co-founder?

People decide to have business partners for many reasons. It is possible that the work might be overwhelming for you alone to manage, or you might not understand the technical aspect of the business. Whatever the situation is, it is very important that you sit that with whosever will be your partner to answer the following questions:

Define the role to be played by each person

  • How much will each partner invest in the business?
  • How will you share the profit and losses?

And lastly, ensure you have a binding agreement. Though it is good to believe the best in people, don’t just assume that things will go.

5. How much do you need as startup capital?

You will definitely need money to actualize your plan of having a successful startup. You should be able to draft out every cost needed to kickstart your business. Getting funds to start your business can be hard but first, look around for help from friends and family. If your business requires a lot of capital investment, you can consider talking to investors if they will be willing to fund your business at a given stake in your company’s share. You should also look out for business grants that are available for startups.

6. Know how to manage people

Once you start your company, in a matter of time, you will start employing some people to join you in building your startup business. Due to that, you will have many people of various backgrounds, different attitudes, and temperaments, who would come to work for you. Managing them will require you to up your management skill. This might require that you go for training or do a short course online on people’s management to be able to have a team of people without having issues in managing them properly.

7. When should you pay yourself and how much?

When you are just starting a business, your focus should not be on spending the profit and it is even advisable that in the first few months of starting if you have some other sources you can use to fund your personal expenses, you should try to reinvest your profits. This is because your startup needs as much money you can pump in as possible in the initial stage.

However, it will get to a point when you will start seeing enough profits from your business, then you should determine the amount you want to be paying yourself by then.

8. Work on your brand this include online presence

No matter what product you are selling or what service you are rendering, you will need enough publicity for your startup business to thrive. Apart from publicizing your business, you also need to brand it as well and that includes your logo, colour, etc. Branding your business will make it stand out from your competitors and also add credibility to your startup.

 

 

Business

How to start a successful dropshipping business in 5 steps

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What Is a Dropshipping Business?

Dropshipping is a type of business model which you can run effectively without having to store any inventory. All you have to do is to get an order for the product and then you can contact the supplier who will ship the product from their warehouse down to the delivery address provided by the buyer.

The major benefit of running a dropshipping business is that you need not worry about the inventory and this is the advantage that dropshipping business has to manage an online store by yourself. You need not worry about storing, packaging, and shipping the products.

How Dropshipping Business Model Works

The dropshipping business has three major players: the manufacturer or supplier, the retailer, and the customer

Let’s now look at the roles of each of these players.

Manufacturer/ supplier

In the dropshipping business model, the manufacturer takes up the role of creating the products, packaging them for delivery, shipping it down to the customer on the retailer’s behalf, taking care of defective products. In order to minimize the risk of unsold inventory, they make their products available to the retailer at wholesale price.

Retailer

The retailer stands as the link between the manufacturer and the customer. It is the role of the retailer to make the products available to the customer by selling the manufacturer’s products on their website under their own brand. The retailer will choose the type of product to sell. Also, the retailer will determine the shipping costs and set product prices

Customer

The customer does not have a direct dealing with the manufacturer because they only need to place their order if they see any product they want and the supplier will ensure that t gets to them.

Steps to starting a dropshipping business

Step 1: Pick your dropshipping business niche

If you want to start a dropshipping business, there are many niches from which you can choose. In choosing a niche, ensure that its type has a sizeable market because you wouldn’t want to end up listing your products without getting any customer or recording low sales.

So, you must first ensure that you carry out the necessary research about the niche you decide on. Just the same way y9ou would do market research for an online store to know how profitable it will be, you must also see drop shipping that way.

Step 2: Carry out competitor research

Now that you have decided what you will be selling in your online store, you want to know who your competitors are and understand the way they operate their business. You can not underestimate what you will find out in your competitor research and it will definitely help you build a stronger marketing plan for your dropshipping business.

Step 3: Secure a supplier

Choosing a dropshipping supplier is a very important decision in creating a successful dropshipping business. In choosing a supplier, make sure you choose based on their past records and ensure that they have good ratings, you wouldn’t want to end up disappointing your customer, would you? There are many suppliers you can choose from and you can also move to another supplier if you notice that the one you are using is not effective.

Step 4: Choose a suitable Dropshipping platform for your store

After you have decided on the above steps, the next thing you should do is to choose an online platform that you will use for your dropshipping busies. Some platforms have a prebuild e-commerce function which has made it easy for anyone to set up a store with them, all you just need to do is to brand it according to your business brand and start building your store on it. Examples of such platforms include Shopify, Aliexpress

Step 5: Promote your dropshipping store

Having your online store set up is not enough, you need to also ensure that your products get to the face of your potential customer. This means you will need to set some budget aside for the marketing and advertising of your store. Ensure you do this while building your dropshipping business plan, it will let you forecast the running cost and set it aside so you don’t end up stranded after setting up your store.

Now that you know how to start a dropshipping business, it’s time to talk about marketing your new store. To stand out in your market, you may want to put extra effort into your marketing and advertising efforts when building your dropshipping business plan.

 

 

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Platform business model and the business of football

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There are different business models but we shall be looking at Platform business in this article and how it relates to the game of football.
Platform business model is a business model that some people are not familiar with, but yet, it is the model on which most businesses around us stand. Examples of businesses that make us of this model include Google, Facebook, YouTube, Airbnb, Uber, Jumia, Coinbase, Alibaba, etc.

Now, let’s look at how the football business works with the platform business model.
The majority of football leagues and tournaments World cup and nations cup all operate on the same business model called the platform business model.

What is a platform business model?

Platform business creates value by connecting multiple independent groups to each other, usually producers and consumers.
The major focus of any platform business is mainly on repeated interaction between producers and consumers. It does not matter whichever league is formed, in as much that there are sustainable interactions between the consumers (in this case the football lovers) and producers (football clubs), the league is bound to succeed.

The reason why some local leagues are not gaining as much traction as they suppose to is because of the poor interaction between producers and consumers take for example the Nigeria Professional League (NPL) which has enough producers but very few consumers.

Leagues should be seen as an enabler of interactions

You should know that the goal of any platform business is to enable interactions repeatedly and efficiently; Facebook and Youtube consistently ensure that their platforms are suitable for content creators and consumers, Google’s Playstore allows app developers to list their apps for interested users, Uber allows drivers signal their availability and consumers also to give them ratings based on their experiences.

There was a proposed league called Super League which was introduced around April 2021, organized by the European Super League Company, and it was created so it could rival UEFA Champions League.

Now, let’s look at how the Platform business model applies to this proposed league.

The priorities of platform businesses can be grouped under three categories, but only two applies to the Super League:

1. Pull

Both producers and consumers must be pulled into the platform. In the case of the Super League, a total of 12 clubs pulled in for the League; Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, and Tottenham, would join AC Milan, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Juventus, and Real Madrid. The next thing would have been working on getting consumers in as well and I believe that heavy media coverage with strong promotion would have done the magic.

2. Facilitate

Once the audience had been drawn to the league, the platform owners would only need to facilitate interactions between them.

Beyond interactions, platform businesses also need to ensure consistent creation of value, why because it is easier to pull in consumers than to keep them. This is why public figures who consistently create what their audience regards as value do have a large number of followers.
Another thing is that it has nothing to do with being new in the game, the moment people start seeing you as a value creator, then they start paying attention to you.

In football, you can regard this value as competition and whoever is behind the Super League understands this also and which made came up with a competitive plan.
The information available Super League website reads: “The Super League is a new European competition between 20 top clubs comprised of 15 founders and five annual qualifiers. There will be two groups of 10 clubs each, playing home and away fixtures within the group each year.

“Following the group stage, eight clubs will qualify for a knockout tournament, playing home and away until the single-match Super League championship, in a dramatic four-week end to the season.

“Games will be played midweek, and all clubs will remain in their domestic leagues.”
Lastly, it’s all about money, sorry but emotions don’t pay the bills.
Quoting Sky Sports News reporter Kaveh Solhekol
“I keep saying it is about money, and if you look at the finances, a club like Man Utd playing in the Champions League, they make between £40m and £80m on a good year if they win it.

“If they play in this new competition, they get a cheque for £250m-£300m, to begin with, then in the future, they will get three times as much money a season as they get from the Champions League.

“You are looking at £200m-£250m in TV rights, they will be able to sell some of the rights to the games themselves on their own channels, the broadcast rights all over the world”.

Although the Super League tournament idea did not materialize, it’s just a matter of time before a similar idea comes up again in the nearest future and it will be because of the same reason as well.

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How to get paid on YouTube

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YouTube is one of the many ways by which you can make money online. There are lots of people who are getting paid on YouTube, these people are called YouTubers or Vloggers. Before you can start earning YouTube, you must first have a YouTube channel where you constantly upload videos. For details on how to create and start a YouTube channel from the scratch, check here.

Video upload could be on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis, but just ensure that you choose a pattern that works best for you and stick to it. You must also be aware that you must not use any copyrighted property on your channel without exclusive authorization from the owner. Such property could be video, audio, image, etc.

When you use such property without authorization and the copyright owner files a report against you, YouTube might give you a strike depending on the type of complaint the copyright owner gave, and once you have up to 3 strikes, YouTube will close your YouTube. Not all copyright claim lead to strikes, but in such a case, the copyright owner will claim any revenue made from the advert played on such video.

This is why you should be as original as possible with any video that you would upload on your channel.

Now that we know some information about starting a YouTube channel, lets now dive into how we can monetize the channel.

1. Apply for the YouTube Partner Program

You can earn directly by partnering with YouTube. This is how the majority of YouTubers make their money from YouTube. For you to approve you as their partner, there are certain requirements you must meet, and these include:

  • Your video must have at least 4,000 valid public watch hours in the past 12 months.
  • Your channel must have at least 1,000 subscribers
  • You must be living in an eligible area
  • Your channel must follow all YouTube’s monetization policies
  • You must have a linked Google AdSense account.

Getting the viewing-hours threshold can look impossible if you are just starting, but you should not be discouraged. Even if you are getting less than 10 views on your videos in your first few weeks, that should tell you that your videos are getting views and it’s a matter of time before you start getting views in thousands.

You must make sure that your videos are high-quality and you must also put every necessary effort into it as well.

Some of those that watch your videos will subscribe to your channel once they see that they can always learn one or two things from your channel. However, the best way to get subscribers if you are just starting is to first ask your friends and family to subscribe, and also ensure that at the intro or outro of your videos, you request that your viewers subscribe.

Once you meet the stated requirements, you can then proceed to apply for the partner program by clicking on your profile and navigating to the “monetization” section.

2. Connect to Google AdSense

In order for your channel to get approved as a YouTube partner, you will need to connect your channel to Google AdSense, which is the company’s advertising system. Advertisers pay Google to bid for space on your channel using AdSense depending on your audience, relevant keywords, and the video topic.

YouTube will pay you based on the number of people that click or watch an ad on your video. Although you must know that ads don’t play on your videos each time someone plays your video so this means that not all views will bring money for you. You must also be aware that YouTube takes a cut of the ad revenue for tax.

You will be paid when your balance gets to $100. This is why you must always work at growing your channel so you can have a large audience because the more views you have, the more money you make.

3. Check out YouTube Premium

YouTube Premium is another way partners can make money on YouTube. How this works is that you make your videos available on YouTube Premium, which is the ad-free subscription service offered by YouTube. You will be paid from the revenue made from membership fees depending on how much Premium members view your videos.

4. Use product placement and video sponsorship

Some companies that are interested in your videos can contact you majorly because your channel promotes content that is related to what they offer. They will pay you to promote their products to your audience.

If you have a sponsored product in a video, ensure that you notify YouTube by ticking on “video contains paid promotion” before you upload the video, you will find this in the advanced settings of your video manager.

5. Become an affiliate partner

Earning through an affiliate program is a good option for you if you have subscribers that are loyal to your channel.

If your audience trust you enough, you can encourage them to visit some affiliates’ sites to carry out certain actions, most often, it requires them to buy certain products and you will be paid a certain commission out of the amount they paid.

You can also on your own reach out to some affiliates sites like ShareASale, ClickBank, and CJ Affiliate to sell their products to your audience. In all you do, ensure that you protect your image, this means that whichever affiliate product you will e recommending, must be verified and legit also.

6. Sell personal products or services to viewers

YouTube can be a place to promote your personal product or service. If you have a product or service you would like to promote, YouTube can be a good platform to do that. It is advisable that whatever product or service you want to promote is related to your videos. Take for instance, a channel that is into make-up can decide to promote and sell make-up kits to viewers. You can also create ebooks or videos on “How-to” and since you are a YouTuber, creating videos will come pretty easier.

 

 

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