Visualize Your Target!
Can you visualize your target? You initialliy approached your business with fervour at the beginning and knew you needed a business plan, stock, premises and staff. Now 10 months later you’re sitting in your lounge, are you any closer to your target?
Of course there are a lot of things you need to get in place, hurdles to overcome and people to talk to. However can you still picture it? I have spoken with several new businesses in the past month that are either about to set up or running for a year or so and they are struggling to still visualize their dream. Mostly because they have had to get bogged down in the necessities of running a business, like insurance, accounts, etc.
So what can be done? Instead of visualizing the whole thing up and running over night, just pick one thing to start and complete something each month whilst running the business, for example!
Bite Size Pieces
This Month: Design a brand! Or rebrand. You can do this simply on Powerpoint initially or use a Free Logo Maker from a Google Search. Canva is also easy fix as well It’s just temporary but a start.
Next Month: Who is your client? It’s essential you know who to target. Do a client profile: Who are they? Age? Job? Interests/Hobbies? Where would you find them? Face to face at Craft Fairs or online or at networking meetings? Once you have done the profile then start listing how to reach them. You may need to pay for networking at locations or for a pitch at a fair but get the prices this month and incorporate it in your budget.
Following Month: Social Media: Make sure you’re on the right ones, having a completed client profile and monitoring the analytics in each of the platforms your using will give you an idea if you are in the right place. Then get your promotion started. Allow 2-3 months to build momentum, unless you go viral – you’ll have to be like the rest of us mortals!
Websites and Social Media
Depending on your industry you may need to go to a few fairs/events or just have images of your business/services available online. Owning your own website is always best in my personal opinion. It’s the only part of the web that you actually own online. Facebook, Twitter and everybody else allow you to rent space, if they change hands or change algorithm – you’re ultimately at their mercy.
Ensure that if you have a front page promotion i.e. like a Facebook page and a website, that they are written well, with good grammar and a font that can be read, (ask a friend or a partner to read through it). You have roughly 3-5 seconds to draw someone onto your page so you need to make it clearly understood what your page is about and make it easy to navigate through the services or products you have. Also make sure you update them regularly, I have seen a few websites and Facebook pages recently that haven’t been updated in the last 6 months, which is a real shame. Even if you only update once a month, it makes your website easier to find in a search. So consider adding a section like “Upcoming Events”, “Latest News” or “Gallery” that can be updated on a regular basis if you don’t want to do Blogs
If you leave pages half done, with the help notes attached of the “ipsus dolerum” etc on it, it doesn’t look very professional, so remove or hide these pages – you can always add/improve these later.
I only say these things as I check the appearance of all the social media and websites each company I meet. I do this to check the digital footprint of my client. However, so does your client! They want to know that they can reach you easily and look up reviews on your work normally prior to calling you. First impressions last.
A Year on in Business
Once you’re established, you can spend more money and time on this but a lot can be achieved in the first instance just with some strategic planning.
Finally and most importantly! Time management. The job of the small business owner is there is never anyone else to help us out. You need to manage your time a lot better than most. Ensure that you prioritize on a frequent basis. Don’t neglect existing clients trying to get more. Word of mouth is still extremely valuable so don’t forget them.
There are lots of tools that you can use that are either free or inexpensive. I have found them to be excellent time saving tools. Check out the list below and perhaps try them out.
Finding Social Media Content to Share: Postplanner
Analytics and Reporting: AgoraPulse
Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither does your business need to be either. By slowing down and doing it properly it will in the end cost you considerably less overall. Constant do overs get expensive!
If you need any help with any of the above, please contact me and I do my best to help you or I can pass you onto my extended network.