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.