ENTREPRENEURSHIP / MAR. 07, 2015
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Financial Vulnerability as a Startup

As a startup, you’ll be experiencing a million different emotions, and excitement is bound to be one of them! Setting up on your own is an exciting time, but you need to make sure that you remember your responsibilities and prioritise effectively.

One of the key things that you’ll need to manage as a startup is financial vulnerability. When you first begin trading, it is natural for your business to have a certain element of financial vulnerability; after all, you won’t have established a sizeable and loyal customer base.

See Also: How to Get Your Startup off the Ground Incubators and Accelerators

However, in these initial stages, there are a number of things that you can do to make your business more financially efficient to ensure its long-term success. Most startups fail in the first few months, and we want to help you have a long and successful career as your own boss, so read on to find out more about managing your business’s finances effectively.

Keep track of your finances

Keeping track of your finances is an essential part of being your own boss. Even if you aren’t one for paperwork, you need to get into the habit of understanding how much you have in the bank and what expenses you’ll need to cover.

If you don’t have a strong grip on your finances, you could find your business spiraling out of control in no time as you rapidly run out of funds to pay the bills. Don’t worry; it’s actually quite straightforward to keep track of your finances and with the help of an accountant, you’ll feel as if a great weight has been lifted!

An accountant will be able to work with you to establish appropriate budgets and also calculate how much you can afford to take out of the business as a salary.

Focus on sales and marketing

In the initial stages, it can be extremely difficult to win business, especially if you have little sales and marketing experience to speak of. Sure, once you establish yourself, you’ll generate a lot of business through word of mouth, but in the initial stages, nobody will know who you are and what you do, so you are going to have to actively seek business.

Sales and marketing isn’t as difficult as you think. With some basic knowledge and lots of drive, you’ll be able to generate enough business to get your startup pointed in the right direction.

There are a few things you can do that don’t require you to be a sales and marketing guru, but if done properly, they can yield fantastic results.

Build a website

Everything is online these days; in fact, the first place most consumers go to find out more about a product or service is a search engine. Consequently, it is essential that you have an online presence by designing a website that properly promotes your business.

You don’t need something that costs thousands of pounds. You can get a well-designed website that does the job for much less if you search for an affordable freelancer or agency. Just make sure that you educate users and inspire them to want to pick up the phone and contact you.

Once your website is launched, you’ll want to get it higher up the search engine rankings so that you can start generating leads from it. The best way to do this is focus on Search Engine Optimisation. If you aren’t familiar with SEO, it is worth speaking to a few agencies to get their help.

Post on social media

Social media is now at the heart of many business marketing strategies. It is a fantastic way of generating relationships with your target audience and, as long as you post interesting sharable content, you’ll see your business amplified to the masses.

Social media marketing isn’t as simple as posting a status update here and there; it takes thought and planning. This social media guide should help you get started.

Do a leaflet drop

Even in this digital age, leaflet drops are still an effective way to generate awareness of a business in a local area. Getting leaflets designed is straightforward; you can find many affordable printers and designers online and, as long as you include your services and contact details, you should see some leads come in.

See Also: 5 Simple Ways to Start a Small Business

Have a plan

Finally, you need to have a plan of what you want to achieve and how you will do it. Too many businesses work blind and without clear goals to work towards, you’ll find it much more difficult to prioritise your tasks effectively.

A good place to start is to think about where you want to be in two years, and set out a clear set of actions to help you achieve the desired goal.

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