Growing your business from “small” to “self-sufficient” is similar to crossing a tightrope. Stay small, move too slowly, and you wind up “stuck,” unable to progress forwards. However, too much forward motion can send you – and your business – tumbling to your doom.
How to keep a steady pace while still achieving solid growth within the first year of operations? The answer is simple – use these five clever hacks to get ahead!
Set Smart – But Ambitious – Goals
Decide as a team what you want to accomplish in your first year. Be realistic, but don’t be afraid to aim a little high. Big goals will motivate everyone to work hard and put in their best effort every single day.
Break these goals down into smaller tasks and to-do lists, and don’t forget to take time to celebrate successes and achievements.
Choose the Right Corporate Entity
Set yourself on the right track by incorporating as the proper entity. A sole proprietorship or partnership will give you a jump start with its quicker incorporation process.
Meanwhile, a standard corporation will accommodate extensive first-year growth due to the ability to involve shareholders. Finally, a limited liability corporation (LLC) can provide a happy medium with elements of both entity types.
Hire a Multi-Talented Team
When selecting a team, consider individuals who possess a wide spectrum of skills. Rather than merely thinking about industry-specific talents, consider hiring graphic designers, accountants and other financial specialists, and individuals with legal training.
This will help your business become a well-rounded, multi-faceted entity which is capable of surviving and thriving despite any obstacles.
Plus, while contractors and freelancers can be great short-term resources, it’s also important to focus on developing a team with long-term staying power. Hiring dedicated individuals who will stick with your business may initially seem expensive, but will pay massive dividends in the long run.
Invest in Success
Encourage growth via savvy management of your limited financial resources. Yes, it’s an unfortunate fact that most small businesses spend the first several months of life “in the red” – but careful investing can be used to pull your company out of the hole sooner rather than later.
Identify what strategies – from advertising campaigns to industry software – are working for you and which ones aren’t. Don’t be afraid to cut anything which isn’t benefiting your business, and make sure to devote time and money to anything contributing to your business’s growth.
Don’t Neglect Social Media
Social media is the number one advantage available to modern small businesses. It is a low-cost platform which allows you to reach a wider audience than ever before. Many small businesses are quick to find that sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter become their number one method of reaching customers during the early days of the company’s life.
Use social media to establish a consistent “brand” – liberally display your name and logo across all accounts connected to your enterprise. Spend some time developing a company web site – ideally with a short, easy to remember URL – and pass it out via newsletters, interest emails, business cards or flyers. This will attract customers to your business with minimal financial investment or labour needed on your part.
With the help of these five useful strategies, your business will double or even triple within the span of a single year. You’ll be able to successfully scale your entrepreneurial efforts without any danger of over-committing yourself or moving too fast. Keep your balance and cross that “tightrope” of first year growth with poise and confidence!