14 Aug Top 3 mistakes when starting a business – Part 2
This is part 2 in my series of blog posts on the top 3 mistakes when starting a business.
If you missed part 1, you can catch up here
Creating a JOB not a business
I completely understand how this happens.
You decided to start your business.
You picked something you enjoy doing and are good at.
Only now you find yourself working really hard but still not bringing in enough money to make it all worthwhile.
You seem to spend hours on admin and at your computer catching up in the evenings. But you’re not getting enough new customers and making enough sales.
You’ve fallen into the trap of creating a job, not a business. Unfortunately without a sustainable business you won’t be able to afford to stay in your new ‘job’.
You’ve focused on what you do rather than setting up a business.
It’s not enough to be good at what you do if you’re missing the key elements of running a business.
You need to recognise that as a business owner you will need to learn new skills, wear several different hats and be willing to outsource the things you can’t do.
Are any of these departments missing from your business?
All businesses need a Marketing department and yours is no exception – except this time it’s you.
You need to have a Marketing plan and make time to actually implement this plan, keeping an eye on your pipeline and how you are bringing new customers to your business and keeping old ones buying from you.
Marketing is one of the skills you need to learn fast when setting up a business.
You may get by initially from existing contacts and people you know but at some point this will dry up.
Where are your next customers coming from?
Following straight on from Marketing is sales – once you’ve got a pipeline of potential customers from your Marketing, how do you feel about closing that sale?
Unless your from a sales background, it’s quite normal to feel a bit icky about selling.
But you have to get over it to convert those potential customers into parting with their cash.
The good news is that you can learn to feel a lot more confident with selling and finding a style that fits with you to do this. Practice also helps!
What can you do to convert more people into buying from you? Who can you call? Who can you email? Are you putting clear calls to action on your Marketing material and making it easy for people to buy?
How well do you understand your top level numbers? What are your costs, income and customer numbers this month?
These are the key levers that you need to stay close to and tweak as needed to move your business towards profit.
This doesn’t need to be really detailed – just a high level summary that you keep updated so that you know at a glance how your business is performing.
So, are any of these departments missing from your business?
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