Speak to any entrepreneur and they'll tell you how launching your venture right can be the difference maker. Months and at times years of planning goes into launching a business. It's a big thing at the end of the day. You cannot wake up randomly, accumulate capital and start a business. You have to see the ins and outs of the industry and the potential of your idea before you enter the market.
Around 90% of all startups fail. Some have to shut down within months, while some cannot go beyond five years. But do not let this discourage you. There's still hope, given that you play smartly.
If you have failed already, there is a higher chance of you tasting success the second time. According to reports, entrepreneurs who have failed once have a higher chance of success compared to entrepreneurs trying their luck for a first time. However, this would work only if you actually learn from your past mistakes.
So how does one guarantee success and have a smooth launch? Read on to find out!
1. Take Very Good Care of The Finances
There is no harm in taking a business loan if you are sold on the idea. Many small businesses accumulate money from different sources, including family and friends, savings and loans from financial institutions.
According to an article published on Credit Sudhaar, credit cards are one of the best sources when it comes to financing small businesses. The article reads, "credit cards do sometimes offer lower rates of interest as compared to say revenue-based financing." But you need to do your research before you pick any of the financing options.
In addition to this, the type of business you choose is also important. There are many advantages of a Limited Company, but is it always the best option? Not necessarily. The right kind of business depends largely on where you're setting it up as tax implications etc., differ not only from country to country but also from state to state.
This may not be directly linked to the launch, but it's important to be clear about these factors before you move ahead.
2. Delegate Work, But Not Always Authority
Most entrepreneurs can be heard complaining of the work involved in launching. At times it gets a little too daunting for one person to handle, and it becomes a necessity to hire help in the form of management or at times a partner.
Since not everyone is interested in getting a partner as a partner would generally require a share in the earnings and certain authority, what is wise is to hire qualified employees to handle the workload. You will anyway have a team of employees, so why not someone to help you manage?
If you are low on finances you can ask someone for help or hire freelancers. They can handle administrative tasks and take off some of your burden. With less things to do, you will be able to concentrate on more important aspects of launching a business.
3. Create a Product that Sell, Turn It Into a Brand
According to Fortune, 42% businesses fail due to their failure to understand what the market needs. It is important to do market research and present what you offer as a brand so that users connect with it. Without branding, your products will not get their identity.
All of us love our ideas. They're our brainchild. But just because it looks perfect to you, does not mean it would sell. It is important to do market testing and see who you are going to target. This will help you give your brand an identity and also bring the required changes to your product.
Product development and testing makes a major crux of your business. You can test your product and consider the feedback to make sure you do not go wrong. All this has to be done in the initial stages.
Once you are sure of the product, it is time to give it an identity. Firstly, think of a name that everyone can connect to. Do not go for generic names, but something that's easy on the lips and has recall value. It does NOT always have to be associated with the nature of your product. Next, pay attention to the stationery items. (logos etc.). Take example of Gucci, the fashion brand is known from its unique logo (G) and pattern. You do not have to look at the label to know if someone's wearing Gucci.
Once all this is in place, see how you will market your product before launch to create an image. This can be done online by sharing your story, having a solid vision and mission and also explaining the purpose of having your business. Your potential clients should know why they should be your clients.
4. Get People Talking
It is important to get the buzz going. What you can do is utilize online marketing. It is very important to have a virtual presence given that around 3 billion people worldwide are using the Internet. Around 90% of the US audience is on the web now, and a large chunk of these users are your target audience. You can cater to them by:
Having a website: If you do not have a professional looking site you will find it difficult to leave a mark. You can use the site to market your products and also come out as an authority by sharing blogs and other forms of content.
Having social media presence: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram etc., is where you will find a bunch of your potential buyers. You can also get in touch with influencers to help promote your brand.
Catering to mobile users: Since over half the website visits are now via mobile devices, there is no reason why you should not have a mobile friendly site. If you can afford, you can also get an app for your business right from the start.
Create buzz, or your business will sink faster than the Titanic. What's the point of launching something if nobody knows about it? Engage fans, and also get them excited by posting teasers and having competitions.
For example, if you are going to launch a new fashion store you can start uploading sketches of your designs, and share behind the scene videos to get people talking.
Doing this will give the launch a sense of urgency and your target audience would be excited about seeing what you have to offer. Remember, the first few days are very important. If you have a dull launch, not only will your employees be demotivated you may find it difficult to give your business a boost.
All this and you are ready for the launch. Once again, the whole process can be exhilarating, but it is important to be safe than sorry. Working hard today will make things easier for you tomorrow.