Great business ideas can be born anywhere. Perhaps you have been let down by a particular business or service and noticed a gap in the market, or maybe you’ve been made redundant from your job and have decided to go it alone.
Sometimes, simply a chat in the pub with friends can lead to an inspiring idea for a new business. The problem is that although anyone can have a great idea for a business, only those who are savvy and sensible can see it through to a thriving company. You could be the world’s best chef, but that doesn’t mean your restaurant will automatically be a success – you need to do the groundwork as well as have the talent.
Making Your Idea A Reality
The key to making your business dream come true is in the planning and preparation. Even if you are planning to start a business in an area you are very familiar with, working for yourself is very different to working for somebody else. You need to establish that there is a demand for your product, determine who your customers are and above all, research your competitors to find out how you can get the edge over them when you start up. That’s not to say you should start up by trying to undercut everyone – you won’t make any profits that way – but figuring out where you’ll fit into the market is important.
Then you need to establish how you will promote your new business. This is very important as it will set the tone for your business for years to come. If you are selling products, are you planning to have retail premises or just operate online? How will you entice potential new customers in and how will you reach as many new clients as possible? This is undeniably easier in these days of social media and internet technology, so you need to make sure you are out there as much as possible in the virtual world.
Costs are another huge factor in your business start-up. No matter how much you love your idea, you need to be able to make a living from it and if you’re employing other people they will also be relying on you for their income. This means putting together a business plan, working out what your outgoings and incomings are likely to be, putting together some projected (realistic) figures and establishing how your business is likely to grow over the coming years. Don’t be too alarmed if you seem to have a lot of outlay in the first year – you will be paying out more at first for equipment, software, hardware and other setup costs, which you won’t need to pay every year. In fact, many new businesses do make a loss in their first year of operation.
Armed with all of the information about costs, you need to find funding for your start up. MSIF specialise in offering funding to small new businesses. By choosing an established company with a reliable reputation, you could soon find yourself on the road to business success.