What’s really stopping you from starting a small business?
You can overcome those common reasons (excuses) for not getting your start-up off the ground with our practical advice for starting a small business.
It’s January 2022, how are those new business new year resolutions coming along?
We know it’s hard… you want everything to be perfect, life is busy, Christmas was expensive, energy bills are going up…
Well in this blog, we’ll go through the five very common excuses for not having got started with your own small business and how you can overcome them.
Go smash it this year- you can do it!
We help startups locally in East Sussex, Kent, Brighton, Crawley and Haywards Heath, as well as others all across the UK. And now we want to help you with this free advice for starting a small business. That’s our new year’s resolution!
Excuse 1: I don’t have time to start a business
Have you said “I don’t have time to start my business right now?”
Many people do.
Of course there is an initial time investment. But you can break down the necessary steps into manageable chunks of time.
Our advice for starting a small business is to schedule time in your diary as you would a gym session or a trip to the cinema. Maybe a relative can take your dogs for a walk while you get some jobs done for an afternoon at the weekend?
Rememberto utilise support from friends, family and your wider network, depending on your business and the activities involved.
You can get this done.
And then, as sales develop, you can outsource time-consuming tasks on an ad-hoc or ongoing basis, so you can focus on doing what you do best, enjoy and make the most money doing!
Excuse 2: I don’t have the skills to start a business
Of course, you don’t have the skills to start a business if you’ve never done it before.
You probably don’t have the skills to change the brakes on your car- but it doesn’t stop you from buying a car and learning to drive does it?
Most businesses are not led by someone who can do all the jobs within them. How many MDs do you think know how to do the payroll, or understand the ins and outs of data protection law, know how to fix a machine on the factory floor, or how often their website domain name needs renewing … or whatever it may be?
You can definitely learn the business set-up requirements quickly with lots of free or paid advice available. Why not read our blog detailing the practical and legal tasks involved in establishing a company? It gives you lots of advice for starting a small business.
And then there are experts that can help with other specialist knowledge as and when you need it.
No one person can be an expert in everything! For some people, it is simply about getting an outsourced bookkeeper, while for others an advisor about their business model is what they need first.
Excuse 3: I have such a fear of failure
It’s natural to worry about failure.
We’ve all heard about successful entrepreneurs that have had businesses fail and high numbers of new businesses failing… I know. It can be frightening.
But there are huge numbers of thriving small businesses too! With people, like you, achieving the success and life/work balance they wanted.
Our main advice for starting a small business is to ensure that you develop a clear business model, along with a marketing plan to ensure you bring in customers. That way you can mitigate the risk of failure.
Read our blog talking about the three fundamental elements of a business model.
Excuse 4: I don’t have the money to start a business
Most new business owners don’t have pots of money.
You are not alone.
You don’t need a lot to get started for many service-based businesses.
And our key bit of advice for starting a small business is that there are various sources of business funding around to support you.
It could be free advice via a fully-funded scheme or a 40% grant towards your capital costs and consultancy advice.
The first important job is to understand what your costs are going to be.
Excuse 5: I don’t know who would buy my products/services
Identifying yourtarget market – who the ideal people/businesses are to buy your products/services – is an essential business planning step.
Ourinitial advice for starting a business always includes clearly defining yourtarget market.
- Are they the general public, businesses/trade (which industry sectors?), public sector or charity? ● What are the individual buyers’ job title, gender, age, interests, income/turnover, years established, number of employees, location etc.?
- What pain/challenge are they feeling that you could solve?
It’s essential to research your marketplace – who are your competitors? How do they position themselves in the marketplace – who is their ideal target market? Of course, you may be aiming for the same customers – but you can differentiate your offering and ethos.
It’s vital to really look at your brand.
That is not your visual brand identity at this stage – ie your log. But your brand essence.
By this we mean, what your business stands for, your values and why. Why do you do what you do? Why should anyone care? People buy from you because they connect to your purpose.
You can also ask yourself these questions:
- How do you want to make people feel when they see your company/brand or use your services? ● As well as identifying any USPs (Unique Selling Points), what are your ESPs – Emotional Selling Points? (People buy due to emotion that is backed up by logic).
- What is your business personality and tone of voice and communication style?
Once you understand who will buy your products/services (and if there are enough of them with money to afford your services), you can start to determine your marketing strategy.
Final advice for starting a small business
I hope you’ve found this blog useful for helping you overcome any mental hurdles lingering in your mind. As well as boosting your mindset to start a business!
My final piece of advice for starting a small business is to ask for help. Yes, I know I have said that before, but it often needs saying again! Many business owners end up saying I wish I’d got help with that earlier, hired someone years ago or outsourced sooner!
I have worked with many entrepreneurs who have been paralysed by one or many of the excuses mentioned in this blog – I’d love to help you too. So wherever you are based in the UK, we can meet on zoom or maybe face to face if Covid allows it! We are often with clients in the East Sussex, Kent, Brighton, Crawley and Haywards Heath communities.
If you’ve got any questions about our tips and advice for starting a business, please do get in touch – we’re happy to chat.
Why listen to what I have to say?
Hello, I’m Basil Riley.
A couple of facts about me – I’m often described as far too liberal and I’ve successfully helped a diverse range of businesses. I definitely don’t fit the stereotypical business advisor perception you may have!
I understand how your new business models and ideas are sometimes difficult for banks, investors and support companies to really get.
Running your own business is both challenging and rewarding. I believe if you have that fire in your belly and you utilise support to help you achieve (since no one can do and be good at everything), you can make a success of your own business.
Let’s be honest, if you can speak your prospective customers’ language and you have access to the internet, you’re off to a great start!
I wish you every success.
Please do connect with me on LinkedIn.
What do we do at Easy Business Start-Up?
We can help you if you are newly self-employed or an experienced entrepreneur. Whether you’re based in East Sussex, Kent, Brighton, Crawley, Haywards Heath or anywhere across the UK.
Perhaps you’d love guidance with navigating your first start-up journey, or need support with launching and growing another new business.
We know it’s important that you have time to concentrate on developing your sales and focus on revenue and profits. Find out more about our range of services and advice for starting a small business.