June 18, 2015
Starting a business can involve huge financial risks for the owner. If you’re missing some business skills, you may need additional training to start your business. Most entrepreneurs also face tremendous competition for customers. Use these tips to differentiate yourself in the marketplace and launch a successful startup.
How to be different
Many entrepreneurs succeed by finding a way to differentiate themselves from the competition. If the customer views your firm differently from others in the marketplace, they will remember you. The next time they need a product or service, they may choose your business. These are some important strategies for a business owner:
Market yourself as an expert
Market yourself as an authority or expert in your field. When you’re perceived as an expert, more people will come to you. Attracting people as an expert requires less effort than “chasing” customers who don’t know about your expertise.
Position your business as a movement
Try to position your business around an idea or movement that goes beyond the products you sell. Disney's brand, for example, is “where dreams come true”. That brand image is broader than simply movies and amusement parks. Subway has positioned their company as a weight loss program. This branding goes beyond their food.
Improve on an existing product
Successful businesses do not necessarily have to invent a brand new product. Many startups simply improve on an existing idea. Customers, for example, have used taxis in cities for decades. Uber has tried to use technology to improve the taxi experience. Uber allows the consumer to get a driver to them much faster than traditional taxi services.
The easier way to find a new customer is when an existing client tells a friend about you. That can happen when customers become fans of your work. By delivering a great product and good customer service, you can start getting word of mouth referrals to your business.
Find and hire great people
The team you hire can have a big impact on your company’s success. Forbes explains that good employees are interested in your business’s culture. Many workers are also drawn to positions that allow them to work remotely. Keep these points in mind as you look for talented people.
Developing business skills
Not all entrepreneurs have the skills they need to manage and grow a business. A sales and marketing person, for example, may have a limited background in accounting. Accounting knowledge can help a business owner create a budget and plan their company’s cash flow. It’s a skill set that all entrepreneurs need.
Colleges and universities have adapted to meet the education needs of today’s business owners. The website for the online accelerated business degree at Gwynedd Mercy University explains that online programs provide flexibility for students who work full-time. Consider finding an online program to increase your business knowledge.
Critical tools for your business
Successful entrepreneurs use these critical tools to run their businesses:
Accounting software and report systems
Every business owner needs to know where they stand from a financial standpoint. Accounting software, such as QuickBooks, allows you to generate dozens of reports to monitor your company profit and cash flow.
Websites with great content
Google remains that largest search engine for the Internet. In recent years, Google has adjusted their search algorithm to increase the importance of good content. Many successful businesses include great content for readers on their websites.
A majority of Internet use is moving to mobile devices. To compete in the marketplace, make sure that your website and applications are mobile-friendly.
Growing your startup business can be challenging. Use these tips to compete effectively for customers. If you need to upgrade your business skills, consider an online business program. These steps will help you get on the right track.
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