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Dealing with a challenge is a big part of being a business owner. You’ve got a lot of responsibilities on your plate right now, especially if you’re only in the first year of running your company, and there’s a lot of work to do before you’re able to hit the big leagues. However, it can be easy to underestimate just how much work you’ve got to do here.
Challenges are going to come from every angle, and it can be easy to get overwhelmed when you’re working entirely on your own. But building a business doesn’t have to be a lonely affair, and it doesn’t need to take you down either; here are some top tips for facing up to the difficult parts of being a business owner.
The more you know about a challenge, the better you’ll pull off a strategy to deal with it. And thanks to the invention of the online world, it’s easier than ever to research the market, your competitors, and how to strike a balance between the two. You don’t even need to put together a case yourself, thanks to just how many second and third party sources there are out there.
You just need to know what the problem is and be able to tap a few keywords into a search engine to get started! Of course, you have the opportunity to put together your own surveys and feedback forms, even focus groups or one on one interviews for more in depth information, but an internet connection is the only thing you really need here.
You know the saying - ‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know’ - and that’s something you should use to full effect when faced with a challenge. Whether you’re not sure how to navigate legal waters, or you’ve got a product development dilemma, or you just need someone to redesign your logo, it’s best to have a network to rely on!
But building a network is easier said than done. Of course it’s best to start with social media and websites like LinkedIn, where it’s easy to see potential contacts all in one place. But more than that, it’s also a good idea to get out there and attend events in person. Take some business cards along with you, make sure you’ve got something short and snappy to say, and be as personable as possible. You never know who you might get a call from the next day!
Outsourcing is a good way to bring expert knowledge on board without having to commit full time. That saves you time and effort in the long run - the more you can outsource and rely on a network, the more affordable it’s going to be to make a profit. However, you’ve got to pick the people and companies you outsource to very carefully; not all services are created the same, and a bit of background digging wouldn’t go amiss. Check out reviews, and contact quite a few different freelance agencies to see how you get on with each.
But what should you outsource for, when you’re not an expert and only have one pair of hands? One of the most useful services available to small business owners like you tends to be marketing related - for example, if you’re an entrepreneur looking to bring a new financial app into the world, looking into fintech digital marketing could be the next step. You’re already spending a lot of time just building the app, and that can make marketing it to a customer base hard to pull off.
Finally, it’s always best to focus on who really matters: your customer base and everyone in it. You need to impress them more than anyone else, and even when you’re dealing with some issues behind closed doors, a bank of good reviews will speak for themselves!
Going the extra mile to put together a great customer service package will always pay off in the long run, and providing value to the consumer is where you need to excel. So forget about that one investor who isn’t interested, or that competitor you’re intimidated by, and think about what your customer will want from you next.
If you’re a new business owner, make sure you’re ready to face problems off at the door. Make some contacts, reach out for help when you need to, and always remember who you’re really working for.
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