Whether you’re starting up your business or looking for expansion, you’ll want to take these six key lessons away with you. Read on, to learn how successful entrepreneurs featured in Xero and Enterprise Nation’s Startup Series dealt with their experiences. Throughout this Startup Series, Xero has been learning from the experiences and insights of four successful entrepreneurs from different industries. Each of these individuals lends some tips on how to start on your own, acquire bigger business, hire staff, and get stocked by retailers! Let’s take a look.
1. Market Research is a Daily Task
Jacqui Ma, founder of urban bag retailer Goodordering, states that seeking customer feedback and keeping up to date with what the competition is coming out with should be second nature.
This way, you’re able to make better informed and confident business decisions. Some ideas include:
- Listening to your customers when making face-to-face sales
- Closely monitoring sales figures
- Social media listening
- Identify competitors
2. Don’t Make it Complicated
Having a business plan is critical; however, people get caught up in the small details. According to David Abrahamovitch, founder of coffee-chain Grind, business owners get hung up on minor details. He recommends creating a short plan to help you get your business running.
The dos and donts when drawing up your plan:
- Don’t get stuck with minor details
- Ensure there’s a market for your business
- Include targets and milestones to help monitor your progress
3. Stay on Top of your Finances
Accurate financial recording ultimately leaves you more time to focus on growing your business.
Omar Choudhry, owner of digital media agency FLAVR, says: “Your company account is like a bucket. You want to spend as much time filling the bucket as possible.”
- Hire a qualified accountant – their advice will help you make better decisions
- Use an accounting platform like Xero, to help you stay up-to-date with your cash flow
- Keep your receipts organized!
4. Perform Your Best
Pip Murray, inventor of Pip & Nut nut butters, says that once you’ve filled a gap in the market, it’s your job to ensure your product or service carries on performing at its best – for both retailers and customers.
“There’s a certain amount of legwork that to do to make sure your brand delivers the same revenue as competitor brands,” explains Pip.
- Promoting your brand using PR, social media, and events
- Engaging customers by sharing content online (i.e. recipes or videos)
- Exposing your brand to a wider audience by joining other brands
5. Keep Your Customers in Mind
For many businesses, customers will first contact you through your website. Omar Choudhry says it’s important to put your customer first when creating content.
“People want efficiency but not an overload of information,” explains Omar.
- If people are coming to your website, they are coming to see the hats you sell and why they should buy them
- Customers don’t want to see what type of thread used to make the hat
- Direct customers to where they need to go – if your website is myhats.com, then that should be the URL address.
- Always direct customers toward a Contact page and make the “buy now” button straightforward
6. Hire the Right Staff
Investing time into the recruitment process can help your business expand, as hiring staff with the skills and experience you don’t possess can be helpful. “When you get the right people doing the right things, your whole business takes on a momentum of its own,” says David Abrahamovitch.
Utilizing these six lessons are critical in launching your brand, gaining a powerful customer base, and ensuring your business will be financially successful.
Entrepreneurship is not easy and taking experiences from individuals who have gone through the trials and tribulations first-hand, you can be assured you’re making smart moves.