StartupGuy

I am StartupGuy
I start a fire with ice

Born: 29th July 19XX

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November 15, 2019 StartupGuy0

We all love to craft our own ideas in order to build a niche, and that very much requires making some hard decisions. I mean…. Starting your own business is more than projecting numbers and looking at profits.

It could even mean leaving your current job. We may often crib about our boring work and horrible bosses. But are we driven enough to do something new out of boredom or passion?

If you’re confused and curious, consider these 10 important points to definitely add substance to your contemplation. Things to ponder over while quitting the job to start a business:

 

1. Are you ready for the bumpy ride?

Leaving behind the corporate league with one foot in the entrepreneurial journey is certainly a risky encounter. Are you actually ready to face the roller coaster ride of this new life? Business means that you will be on your own with nothing to fall back on. Are you ready for that?

2. Are You ready to take on multiple roles?

You’re soon going to be a boss, and that means wearing multiple hats. You will have to carry out several functions with or without resources at your disposal. This is until you start making those leaping gains. The experience of self-employment can prove to be more challenging than that of being an employee. Are you ready for that?

3. Are you willing to burn bridges for a better tomorrow?

Don’t resign abruptly from your current job until you’re sure that’s what you really want to do for the rest of your life. What if your employer could help launch you? You need to pull off a few stunts heroically. A new venture requires a breakthrough idea, support and effective execution. Are you ready to stake it all?

4. Are you ready to brush up on your skills frequently?

The market dynamics in this current scenario changes within a fraction of a second, calling for changing your strategy as and when. How comfortable would you be to rework on your own products, ideas and services, so they level with the brilliance prevailing in the market?

5. Are you ready for a new routine?

Starting a business from the scratch is going to surely take away most of your time, thus keeping you away from your family, friends and barricading your social life. You will have to evaluate and measure up the odds of risking your personal life to a certain extent in order to make it work. Are you ready for that?

6. Do you have enough resources for your new venture?

Having an idea is never enough but you are going to need efficient planning, implementation and adequate resources to run the show. Ask yourself the kind of resources that you have so as to push your venture ahead. Are they enough?

7. Are you ready for the grueling sessions?

Get ready for the grill. From selling the product to monitoring accounting and even advertising, you really gotta have all the answers!

8. Are you open to constructive and destructive criticism?

As an entrepreneur, you’ll need to be assertive and otherwise be able to accept other’s opinion about your work and products. Are you willing to take in the destructive criticism with grace?

9. Can you ignore euphemistic people or opponents?

Your success may bite your opponents hard. If people provide you with devastating information or hinder your vision, work and career, can you bypass them? Can you actually not give a damn?

10. Do you want this MORE than anything?

If this is what gives a kick, then you must invest in your venture and importantly, your future too. Ask yourself if you’re willing to let go the fancy frenzy of the corporate, and live a more rigorous but fulfilling life.

Are you sure about removing the corporate badge and entering the entrepreneurial space? If you’re not still, then reconsider your options again.



March 16, 2018 StartupGuy0

Imagine 20 people waiting in a queue for a bus or to buy a ticket, or on a cash counter in a bank, and suddenly the last one of them, moves out, comes to the counter and says, “Keep standing there all day. I am just buying the ticket right away. My world, my rules”.

I don’t have to write what might have happened to that person. An Entrepreneur is just like that guy. When everybody is going to get a good salary, officially given a car, home allowance, free tours, medial insurances, pension and a fair amount as gratuity fund, the entrepreneur is talking about taking risks, spending money, taking loans, hiring services, paying rent and utility bills – isn’t that person crazy?

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Out of box thinking and breaking the egg shell are 2 very different tasks. But before that, aspiring entrepreneurs must learn and develop a few things which can prove to be vital for survival in the open market. An “about to become” entrepreneur must learn resilience, professionalism, self-confidence, leadership, team work and effective ways of communication and presentation. But it isn’t something beyond human capabilities. The rule is simple – Higher risks, higher profits. It’s sometimes stressful but at times, it can be highly rewarding and can give a sense of accomplishment. So it isn’t as hard as it seems. I would suggest the following points to consider before jumping into the market.

1. Prioritize things

First decide what you want to become. Then rank different things you have and also the things you want to have. What is important to you and what are you willing to sacrifice?

2. Personality Match

Some are good at being the boss, while others are better at following instructions. Are you comfortable with a lot of responsibility? Can you take full responsibility for success and failure? Can you accept failure as well?

3. Skills

Are you an innovator and a creative problem-solver? Do you have the ability to tolerate uncertainty and unexpected change of events? Do you have a clear picture of your strengths and weaknesses?

4. Be idealistic

Do you believe in yourself? Do you have the determination and courage to keep climbing until you reach the mountain top? Will you be able to jump over many hurdles continuously?

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5. Be realistic

Can you be realistic enough to face rejection and comments which are directly against the idea dearest to you?

6. Be flexible

Adaptation is important to survive. It’s actually the “survival of the fittest” kind of logic. Do not be over-obsessed with your plans. Always be flexible to accept and understand changes in market and consumer behaviour.

7. Be Prepared

Situations can either be like an “elevator pitch” or “detailed essay”.. It’s expressing your idea according to the situation. You must know every aspect of your business to avoid pitfalls.

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8. Analyse

Market research and analysis is vital before entering a market. You can fail easily or succeed easily depending on how strong your research is. Jumping into the water without knowing its depth is actually a huge risk.

9. Expand Network

Keep networking. You will never know who can be critically helpful in your business. More networking will give you more options and more ways to keep on moving.

10. Team Up

You don’t have to do it all alone. Keep it legalized and written, and add partners without any fear.

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In short, it’s all about analyzing your personality, skills and keeping your idea acceptable for the market and the consumers.



March 14, 2018 StartupGuy1

I always find myself searching google on how to do stuff? My best search was how to clean aged copper products. Google suggested a YouTube video and bob was my uncle. I found what I was looking for, the video gave me exact details on how to use some home ingredients to clean my copper products, suffice to say, the results were phenomenal. I felt uber smart and I haven’t stopped searching ‘how to’ stuff since! With this being said, I have noticed that quite often when searching how to on Google, that Google pre-suggests what my search is or what my search may be and the thing I always notice is what people or business owners are searching the web for.

This is what this month’s article is about: How to market my small biz. This got me thinking, how many small business owners in South Africa are searching for the same thing?

If you are currently a small business owner or planning to be one, chances are you are on the internet quite often, in fact you might just be spending most of your working day online. That is if you’re not out knocking on corporate doors selling your business to potential buyers. Now, the fact that this search suggestion comes up so often gives me insight as to what small business owners need or want to know better for themselves. Which is a great thing because it means that you realise you have the power to effectively grow your business and just generally want to now more. Not every business owner is equipped with all the knowledge it takes to run a business, at the very beginning of it, and that is understandable of course. You learn a lot of what must be known on the job! But what you do know for certain is that there is a product and or a service that must be sold to a consumer who needs or wants what your business has to offer.

Starting a small business today is not very difficult. In fact, in South Africa today, we have many enterprises and government organisations and initiatives that help make it affordable and most definitely possibly to pursue your business goals. However, the onus is still on you to understand why you are in business and who you will sell too. Knowing your product or service and knowing yourself is one thing. But understanding how to market your business is something else. You could be an amazing sales person with a great offering, you may even have the world’s most amazing product/s. But if you can’t get your offering to its market then you don’t really have a successful business. Promoting your offering to a potential customer with a fancy business card does guarantee you a sale. It only just means you have wasted money. Why? Because you have paid for that business card and got more of a compliment for the fancy business card than you did for your business offering. But if you have promoted your offering to a potential customer who noticed your business’s marketing efforts and they have contacted as a result of this, then you are guaranteed a sale. Why??? Well because you have effectively managed to engage the individual/s interest in your business’s offering.

The How to market my small biz search is so successful among small business owners today because it teaches the individual the basics and most important fundamentals of marketing. The search will yield the results I have listed here and this is because the practices below have been the foundation of all marketing principles, commonly known as the marketing mix, since the 1960’s.

You must research the need of your product or service, hopefully this would have been done before you started the actual business.

You must understand who your target market is, this is the people whom you want to buy your offering.

You must understand where most of your business will come from and the demographic of this buyer. This is the specific details of the potential buyer and the reason for this is to better understand your buyer so you can sell more product to them, without having to physically force your product on them. This is a time-consuming study and is not immediately revenue producing activity but is absolutely necessary for the continuous success of the business.

You need to know where to price your offering. If you enter the market too low, you risk turning a loss and if your prices are too high, well then you are not competitive and risk people not buying from you.

Once you are certain of all of the above, you now have to focus on promotion. How to get my product to its market.
Along with the above, the search will also show results of today’s most common and also effective marketing practices. These results will be more digitally focused as most of today’s consumers of any product or service will track and find you online either via a computer or their mobile phones. This means that a large majority of your marketing efforts will and has to be digitally focused. To be more specific, what I mean small business owner, is that you will have to learn how to market your business online.

Be sure to have an online presence. This is mainly your company’s website which should be built by a professional as it needs to be user and mobile friendly. Your website is your online business card, only with a lot more information and insight to your business.

Be sure to be found on Google. If you can’t be found on Google, then your business is hiding in some dark road with no pedestrians to see what you have on offer. This is search engine optimization or better known as SEO.

Social media today, is like currency. If your business not on social media, well then… your chances of transacting are slim. You should not only aim to have a social media presence but aim to have it optimised and specifically targeted to your market. Please do keep your viewers engaged, enlightened and entertained in your posts as they help grow your business. Social media is todays word-of-mouth.

Have a monthly emailing campaign to your customer base. Inform them of what is happening in your business and what the latest deals are. Keep them interested.
And then repeat the above efforts weekly to grow your brand.

These digital marketing efforts are the basics and very simple to affect and will guarantee brand development, business growth and more sales! Searching How to market my small biz is a search you should do at least once a month as it brings up every article, post, company, technique and the what not to do’s you will need when learning how to market your small business. My hope for you is that you will be very successful in your marketing endeavours and the growth of your business.

Article by Shannon Rosenberg, Director and Owner of Eighty6 Marketing (Pty) Ltd



March 14, 2018 StartupGuy0

“I love startups. I hate the startup scene.”

I was having lunch with a friend of mine, and he was mad.

He’s founded and sold two companies, and he’s a sought-after advisor for young companies looking to break through the noise.

Day in and day out, he told me, he’d see founders that were more interested in playing startup than actually being one.

Startups are a beautiful thing; they create value where nothing existed before, and the best of them succeed despite the unimaginably high likelihood of failure.

And while I love to defend, celebrate and encourage startups—after all, we wouldn’t be here without people doing the same for us—I couldn’t help but agree with my friend.

I spent the next few days thinking about what he said, and then I began to see it everywhere I looked: too many startups like to play startup.

Too many startups are willing to go to great lengths to look like a business, far more than they’re willing to actually do the work to become one.

I’ll admit: I’ve been there. There have been times when I started to fall in love with feeling like I had a successful business. The reality is that I wasn’t even close, but I’d look for clues—vanity metrics, mostly—to reinforce my perception.

It was during those times that we made the least progress as a company.

Now, if you want to play startup, and have the money to do so, go for it. But ultimately, you’re playing yourself—and your team—out of any shot of real success.

Today, I’ll share you 7 examples to help you figure out if you’re spending too much time playing startup, along with the best advice I’ve ever been given to get out of that trap.

7 Signs You Might Be Playing Startup

Below are some of the most common behaviors of founders and teams that are more concerned with acting like a business than being one:

1) Meetings, meetings and more meetings

“I’m in a meeting”, for many, feels nice to say.

It signals that you’re important enough that your input is required by a group of other people.

It signals that you’re working on stuff. Big, thoughtful strategy stuff that needs to be “hashed out.”

More often than not, meetings are a waste of time, leaned on by people who don’t want to make a difficult decision and would rather punt it to a group.

Jason Fried puts the true cost of meetings into perspective brilliantly in his TEDx talk, where he points out that a one-hour meeting with eight people isn’t really a one-hour meeting at all; it’s a meeting that just consumed eight hours of productive time from your team.

Meetings might feel like you’re doing business, but most of the time, you’re just costing your business precious resources.

2) Having multiple people doing a jobthat one person can do

The bigger your team is, the more serious your company feels.

This leads some startups to hire more people than they need.

If you’re bootstrapped and have an email list of 1,000 people and want to grow that list, you don’t need a full-time email marketing manager, a writer, a designer and a junior marketer to execute on a content marketing strategy for you.

You need a motivated, scrappy content marketer who can do all of those jobs at once.

Sure, it feels nice to “need” a team of specialists to execute on your grand plans, but save it for when you really need it: when you become a much larger business. And even then, question whether or not you really need that person, or whether you can make a smarter use of those limited dollars.

3) Worshipping vanity benchmarks

In the same vein, a number of employees is not a metric to measure success by.

Anyone can over-hire in the name of building something that looks like a “real” team.

Unfortunately, many startups that fall into that trap—seduced by the dream of looking like a bigger business than they are—end up dealing with one of the most painful parts of the real business: layoffs.

4) Spending a lot of time at meetups

Most people at networking events are talking about work.

That makes sense; after all, most people are there to make professional connections.

But that’s also very dangerous because it makes you feel like you’re actually doing work.

Networking feels like work. And you can make the argument that it is.

But what other work are you trading off to do it?

Could your time be better spent talking to your customers? Or working on your marketing strategy? Or doing high-level thinking about your business? Or trying to make connections with influencers in other, more targeted ways?

Or spending time with your family or friends? Or working out? Or playing?

 

Or getting some sleep or anything else that will help you better balance your life and be more productive in the work time that you do have?

Don’t default to going to networking events just because it feels like doing business. Think carefully about the tradeoffs, and decide if it’s worth it.

5) Sponsoring conferences

I cringe when I see early-stage startups buying R25,000 conference sponsorships because they see FNB doing it and think that it will make them look like a big business.

FNB, and even much smaller companies, can comfortably spend R25,000 on a trade show booth because it’s a small part of their larger marketing strategy. It makes sense for them because they can afford to buy booths at every relevant conference and get consistent face-time with their market over the long-term.

Most startups don’t have that luxury and don’t end up with much more than an Instagram photo of their team at their branded booth. The comments will say things like “congrats!” and “you’ve come a long way!”, but the truth is often far from it.

6) Overspending on swag, business cards, and office space

Look, I get that it’s nice to have stuff with your company’s name on it…

… or to work in a futuristic open office space.

And it does have value to make your employees feel good about where they work, and to make a good impression on your customers.

But this is another thing that many startups do before they can actually afford it.

If you’re struggling to afford hosting or negotiating for discounts off of R500/month tools, then you’re probably not ready for premium business cards or an arcade game at the office.

Especially in the early days, spend your money where you can actually see a return, even if the rest of the world can’t see you doing it.

7) Having more conversations with people outside of your market than people in it

Want to take coffee meetings with other founders, advisors or executives?

Great, do it. You can learn a lot from them.

And you should. It’s a valuable thing to do. But it’s also a dangerous thing to do, because it can be very, very addicting.

Soon, you’ll begin spending more time sharing stories with other founders to learn about their journeys than you spend talking to your customers and your prospects to learn about their needs.

And that’s how you lose sight of what’s important, and it’s how you derail your business.

Do Any of These Describe You?

There’s a good chance that one or more of these resonated with you.

And that’s okay; it doesn’t mean that you’re going to fail in business.

In fact, depending on the day, I often catch myself stumbling into one of these traps. I can’t help it… in a world full of tough challenges and setbacks, it feels great to look for anything that makes us feel like we’re not failures.

But when you let these habits go unchecked, they become dangerous.

So I asked my friend—the one from the beginning of this post who pointed out the problem to me in the first place—what he suggested startups do about this.

His response, I think, was perfect:

“It’s important to recognize these behaviors for what they really are: proxies for the real work we all need to be doing to actually grow our businesses.”

My goal with this post isn’t to shame anyone. It’s to offer a helpful reminder to ask yourself a simple question about everything that you do: is this going to help us BE a great business, or just play one?

You’ll find that you do fewer and fewer things that aren’t real work, and understanding what’s important will become much, much easier.

I’d love to add to this list. What other behaviors have you caught yourself or others doing that constitute “playing startup”? Let’s help each other eliminate these distractions and focus on doing things that matter.



March 9, 2018 StartupGuy0

Let’s face it. We are all dreamers.

Some of us dream about a tropical paradise in the middle of a harsh winter and others dream about riches that can unshackle them from the miserable life they are trapped in.

However, only a chosen few among millions of dreamers get to realize their dreams. These are the dreamers who became doers and also probably got lucky along the way.

Why are some people destined to get what they dream about while most others cannot seem to make any progress?

While luck or the hand of God does indeed play a role, the path towards realizing your goals starts with a few small changes to the lifestyle that anyone can master.

Now that’s a bold statement to make.

But when I look back at the changes I made to my own life, I believe anyone can do what I did. Five years ago, I was just an average Sipho with a better than average, comfortable 9 to 5 job in Cape Town. I left my job and relocated to Gauteng, the province of my birth, and bootstrapped a business. I am still struggling to get it off the ground, but I have no regrets.

Five years ago, I stopped being a dreamer and became a doer and here are three things I did to make the switch.

1. I defined my dreams

Looking back at my own transition into an entrepreneur, I realized that the first step in the journey to achieve your goals is to paint a vivid picture of your goals.

If you have always dreamed of becoming a full-time scuba diving instructor in Durban, you need to start thinking about how much money you will need to live in Durban, what would it cost to become a licensed diver, how are other diving instructors promoting their business, and where will you learn to become a diving instructor?

I had a comfortable job and a good life in the beautiful Southern Suburb. But something wasn’t just feeling right. I was always dreaming of running my own business and doing anything else seemed like a compromise. However, it seemed strange that most of my friends had similar dreams yet they remained chained to their regular jobs. I decided to stop dreaming and start working towards my dream.

Here is what I did.

I nailed down the details of what I dreamed about. If I were to start a business, what business would it be? How much money would I need to start the business? How will I get my first customer? Who are my competitors? What skills do I lack that will stop me from starting or running the business? These were just some of the questions that needed unambiguous answers.

Finding answers to these questions gave me a clear set of goals that did not seem like an impossible dream anymore. Clarity of thought helped me figure out what it took to achieve my dream and identify the gaps or hurdles that I needed to clear in pursuit of my dreams.

2. I changed my habits and learned to focus

Once you have given a concrete shape to your dream, the next step in your journey from being a dreamer to becoming a doer is to break down the goals into a series of incremental actions that will eventually add up to make a dent in the hurdles you may be facing.

Coming back to my own journey of becoming an entrepreneur, I worked on several small ticket items (seemingly disconnected) that came together to help me say goodbye to my 9 to 5 job.

Here are a few things I did.

I started reading books about successful entrepreneurs to help motivate myself.
I started saving up money aggressively by cutting down on frivolous expenses.
I was spending a lot of time using products that my ‘future competitors’ already had in the market just to understand how I could possibly do better.

I started dabbling in areas that I was uncomfortable in, i.e. coding and accounting.

I was doing all of this while still holding on to the reality of working in a 9 to 5 job. I had to make sacrifices and bring about changes in my habits and lifestyle in the interest of laying a solid foundation on which I wanted to build a new reality.

3. I treated setbacks as blessings

Getting what you want is not easy and that’s why most of us are trapped in an unpleasant reality. If I were to pinpoint a single trait that will help someone magically transform their dream into reality, it is resilience.

Life will throw curve balls at every turn. However, as long as you recognize that setbacks are actually blessings in disguise, you will move forward in your quest.

Here are a few things that happened as I was preparing to start my business.

I fell sick with a mystery illness that confounded every specialist physician that examined me! I was feeling listless and drained 24X7 and it was a nightmare to go through with the unending lists of tests and scans.

I did not let this setback stop me from working on my new habits or focusing on my dreams. In fact, I saw this set back as a sign from above that told me to focus on leading a healthy lifestyle. After all, what good can come out of realizing your dreams when you can no longer have the health to enjoy it?

Setbacks have now become a way of life! But they haven’t stopped me yet. When I mustered enough courage to start my business, I realized that whatever assumptions I had about what I will be offering as a product did not hold good anymore as the market had changed!

I took it as yet another challenge in the series of hurdles that I should be crossing before getting my business on track to profitability.

Looking back, it was my determination and conviction that helped me survive seemingly insurmountable odds.

Don’t let your dreams remain in the realm of fantasy. The only way to make the transition to becoming what I call the “Action Hero” is to start thinking through the details of what you want and knocking down incremental action items relentlessly.

I am by no means a successful entrepreneur yet and I know very well that I may fail. However, I am now living my dreams.

Are you a dreamer? Share your goals and outline your plan to make it a reality in the comments below.



February 28, 2018 StartupGuy0

Starting a business is a tough gig. How tough it is it is up to you. 50% of startup businesses fail within 5 years. How do you avoid this? It’s simpler than you’d think. We’ve picked out four essential tips from Startup Mzansi that give your business a chance to succeed where others fail.

1) Evaluate your idea

It isn’t enough to ask your friends and family whether they think your idea is any good, you must evaluate it objectively. Be honest and ask yourself the following questions:

• Does your service/product satisfy a need or solve a problem?
• Is it disruptive?
• Can you monetise it?
• Can you identify at least 1 unique selling point?

If you can’t answer these questions positively and without difficulty, then you might not have a viable business.

2) Do your research

It’s important to do your research before starting a business. Going into a market blindly is a quick route to failure. You must understand your demographic and niche market, consider whether they will actually pay for your service or product. It’s important to know the shape of your sector too; if it’s in decline then maybe you should reconsider, if it’s on the up then look at who else will be likely to enter it. What does your competition look like? Don’t just think about your direct competition, look at what indirect competition you may have too. When looking at your competition, be sure to deliberate whether your price points are realistic in comparison.

3) Build your dream team

When your business is in its early days of trading, there’ll come a point when you realise that you can’t do everything yourself. It’s at this time that you’ll need to consider building a team. Firstly, think about the structure and hierarchy of your company. You’ll need to adapt your hiring techniques based on whether you seek a co-founder or employees. You may even find that it’s easier to outsource some of the workload. The team you assemble at the beginning of your time in business will play an important part in the overall success of your company. You’ll need enthusiastic, creative, reliable and ambitious people who can help plan and execute your business strategy precisely.

4) Create a long-term financial plan

This sounds obvious but you’ll be surprised by how many start-ups fail as a direct result of not possessing a thorough financial plan. By plotting your long term finances, you can avoid any nasty surprises. You can also be wary of when you’ll actually run out of money, require further investment and hopefully start making revenue. Don’t forget to factor in production and staffing costs, especially if you’re looking to take on further employees. You should always be realistic of the demand you’ll receive in the early days and be mindful that turnover is very different to profit.

Alternatively, you can follow @StartupMzansi on Twitter.


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February 12, 2018 StartupGuy0

I passionately believe that for the overwhelming majority of young people, attending university is a complete waste of 3 years of their life.

Ok, this is quite a bold statement, and one which may be controversial for some. But let me tell you why I believe this, and you may well find yourself feeling the same way.

In a time of rising graduate unemployment and huge student debts, the idea of attending university simply for the purpose of obtaining a degree is fast becoming obsolete. Now I’m not saying that no one should ever go to university. That would be silly. After all, if I want to hire a lawyer to represent me, have a surgeon operate on my heart, or have an architect draw me some blueprints for a building, I would want those people to have the best degree possible in their given field.

However the vast majority of young people who go to university are not doing so because they need a degree in a technical field. They are doing so because they have been brainwashed by society to believe that they need a degree in something, anything, to be accepted and valued. I’m going to let you in on a little secret here. Almost all employers in the South Africa hire people based on their experience. Once you have gotten over the hurdle of getting your first job, your academic qualifications almost immediately become irrelevant. This is a fact. If you are good at what you do and you are good with people, you will excel.

It gets better. As an entrepreneur, YOU call the shots. As long as you have a good idea that you are passionate about, and have the confidence to put it into action, it doesn’t really matter whether you even sat your exams. Because the only ability you really need is the ability to sell your idea. To make other people believe in what you are selling and doing. Whether those people are customers, potential investors, employees, suppliers or anyone else, the only thing that you really need to be good at is bringing them on board with your idea. As your idea grows you will simply hire others to take care of all the technical stuff. This would be the case regardless of your educational background. Because as an entrepreneur it’s not your job to be a technician.

Your job is to steer the ship.



February 10, 2018 StartupGuy0

Whether you are a big company or a small company, you should understand just how important the media is in the promotion and success of your company. Not only can it drastically improve your image and your sales, but it can also hinder them if you don’t use it wisely.

There are many ways that you can use the media to your advantage, here are some of the most popular ways.

 

Local Media

If you are a small company, then this is even more important to you. The local media can promote your company if you use it in the right way. Having the support of your local community is an important factor to achieve and maintain success.

Try supporting local events or charities with sponsorship and giving people merchandise to show at the event. You can liaise with the local radio and newspapers to invite them to the event, and tell them what you are doing for the community. A popular way of promoting a company is to sponsor a local sports team. They will wear your logo on their shirts in return.

Social Media

Using social media to promote your company is now one of the most popular ways for businesses to appeal to audiences. So many potential customers use social media that it makes sense to get your company in front of them.

You can do this in many ways; you can try paid advertising to show your advert at certain times of the day. It will show up in the users’ feeds, or you can post to your own social media account. Just remember to let your customers know how to interact with you; you can do this on your website, on your packaging and on your advertising. Once people know where you are, you can start showing your products and organizing competitions to pique interest.

Television

Although it can be an expensive way to advertise, there is no doubt that using the television or other media such as streaming sites does increase your presence in people’s minds. As with local media, you can also try sponsoring a show or an event on the television to boost your profile even further.

It is important that you have a strong brand for television, so ensure your branding and your logo are top notch. You can use sites like Adobe Spark to design your logo if you don’t already have one.

You can also advertise on streaming services such as Netflix or Amazon. More people are watching their television content via these platforms, so there are a lot of potential customers.

Cinemas

Cinema advertising is another good way to show your company in front of a captive audience. They will be there waiting for the movie so that they will be looking at the advertising as well. Cleverly thought out advertising in this setting could make a big difference to your brand image and your sales, and surprisingly it is not as expensive as you may think.

By using all these different avenues to promote your business, you can easily start to grow your customer base and build a reliable and strong brand.



February 10, 2018 StartupGuy0

1. Know Your Company and Your Product

Before you can begin, you must first know what business you want. What does your company stand for, what does it seek to achieve? You must know what your company’s goal is, what it’s vision is, and what you want to achieve. You must also know about your product – why should consumers purchase it? What value does it bring? Once you know this information, you will be able to start setting up your business.

2. Know the Industry

Before you can begin, you need to know the industry that you are going in to. Who are the big players? Who are your competition? What techniques and practices do the successful companies use that you should adopt? You can learn so much just be researching your competition, which is why it should be your first step after you have determined who and what your company is.

3. Know Where You’ll Get Funding

There will always be start-up costs to your business, which is why you must always consider where you will get the funding. If you have been working in the industry for years, you could have both the know-how and the savings to start your business yourself. If you don’t have the savings, however, you will instead have to look at loans or other options. Know where you will get funding before you start, otherwise you’ll have a hard time getting your business off the ground.

4. Set Yourself Up Online

A great way to gauge interest and increase awareness is to create free online profiles for your company before you launch. You can easily sell people the idea of your company and get presales, interested (and potentially loyal) customers, and in some cases even funding. Get your company out there before it launches so that you can drum up support, funding, and publicity before you even begin.

5. Have Contingency Plans

Know that some things will go wrong. In some cases, nothing will go right. Know the realistic setbacks that you could face and have contingency plans. Many businesses, for instance, should know about MySQL data repair services. You want to know how to fix problems before they even begin.

Being prepared and knowledgeable before you begin financing your business is a great way to be begin. Not only will you know how to succeed by studying your competition, you will also know how to market yourself better and will be able to succeed faster



January 24, 2018 StartupGuy0

Facebook is a social networking tool that allows registered users to share their day-to-day life with friends with whom they are connected with. These include sharing of photos, statuses, locations and videos. It also allows the creation of features such as pages, events, and groups that help in the advancement of the popularity of mentioned ideas. These things help us in Promote Business on Facebook.

Facebook, also allows people to give their comments on different things. There is a lot of privacy attached to it depending on user’s decision. One can decide to be visible, block certain communication or privatize their activities.

In the corporate world, Facebook is shaping the image of businesses in many ways as it allows more visibility and thus increases followers and patrons of the different business, thus giving them a chance to grow. Below are the steps on How to promote your startup on Facebook.

How to promote your startup on Facebook

Step-1: Recognized picture profile

Profile pictures on Facebook mark the virtual identity of any business and act as a thumbnail for all the posts done by that page, hence, it should be chosen wisely. People will be sceptical
to trust a profile without a display picture so it is advisable to always have a relevant picture that is recognized as the brand image. This will reduce suspicion about the authenticity of the
page as well as allow people to approach the users for socializing with any hesitancy. It enhances credibility and increases chances of reputation growth among the audience. Seeing a known picture ignites interest in customers about the business content and shows professionalism.

Step-2:

Quality cover photo

Cover photos should be large enough for visibility and blend in with the profile picture. Creativity should be employed in choosing a cover photo that speaks of the brand without any
words. The quality of the cover photo brings exposure and reduces the cost of marketing. It builds loyalty for the brand and increases web traffic thus promoting the brand.

Step-3:

Brief about the company

The about section on any page has a brief for the company. This brief must be written in such a way that it describes the potential of the company to readers. It should answer the question about what you do and what customers will get.

Step-4:

Include apps

Making Apps in business bring convenience. Put in apps in the company page that fulfil the requirements and functionality of the business. Apps can be useful in creating reminders, updates, feedback and also reduce costs to the business.

Step-5:

Visual marketing

Visual marketing allows companies to actually show their products instead of explaining it and hoping that customers will understand. Images always attract the attention of the audience as they are friendly and boost the brand ideology by eliminating language barriers. In visual representation, the picture itself has a meaning and people can translate it easily.

Step-6:

Measure people’s engagement

Facebook allows likes and dislikes. In this way, customers can show consent or disagree with any developments that the company plans to take. Thus, people feel engaged and believe that their inputs shape the future of the company.

Step-7:

Monitor comments regularity

Insights given can be used to improve services hence customer satisfaction is determined because listening to customers is the only way to find out if they are ready to buy the product
or not.

Benefits of promoting your startup business on Facebook

Business exposure

Facebook has a huge number of followers; therefore, any information that is posted reaches a massive audience. Thus businesses are recognized on a gigantic platform and expansion is guaranteed and so is the increase in demand for the product or services.

Reduced marketing expenses

It is cost effective. Opening a Facebook page does not cost anything unless advertisement posts are needed to enhance page likes. But advert costs are minimal and thus marketing expenses are reduced.

Target the right audience

When posting any business in a Facebook, one should be aware that not everyone will like it or hook up with the page. However, due to the huge number of patrons on Facebook, business owners can rest assured that the information will reach a good amount of the targeted audience.

Understand competitors

With Facebook, a lot of competitors can also follow business processes. Thus a strategic marketing is required to determine the visibility of the business. Healthy competition allows people to produce quality products for customer satisfaction.

Make use of the feedbacks

In the process of Facebook interaction, business owners tend to get a lot of insights. Feedback in a business is a way of listening effectively, boosting motivation and increasing performance. It is a learning experience.

Enhanced business branding

Business branding brings visibility and customer loyalty. Entertaining information makes clients stay in touch. Customers offer great support to the sites that are encouraging and thus boost morale.

Follow above steps to promote your Business on Facebook.