If you’re thinking about launching a startup, it’s essential to think about your end goal. Do you want to make money? Do you want to get enough funding for an exit strategy? Or do you want people to know who you are and what your mission is so that when the time comes, they’ll be eager and willing participants in whatever it is that you have planned? Whatever your reasons might be for starting a business of your own, if there’s anything more challenging than launching a startup, it’s getting noticed.
Here are six tips on how to launch your startup:
1. Have a Business Plan
A business plan is your roadmap for achieving those goals. It’s the key to understanding everything you need to do and what resources are required to get there. It’ll serve as a valuable tool when the time comes where you need money because any investor will want to see this before they’re willing to support your vision.
If you want to create a business plan, there are plenty of resources online that can help. A simple Google search will give you an idea of what’s involved with creating one and the amount of work it takes. You don’t need anything too detailed or complicated but having something solid in front of you is important.
Be realistic about your time frame. You want to be as accurate as you can with your estimations, but the most important thing is that you set deadlines and try not to let them slide. It’s easy for things like this to slip through the cracks if there isn’t a specific deadline in place, so try and come up with something reasonable and then stick to it.
2. Secure Funding
Now that you have your business plan, it’s time to put some money behind it. This part is the most difficult for any startup, and there are many ways to get funding, like bootstrapping or crowdfunding.
Bootstrapping refers to using personal or external resources (family/friends, loans, credit cards) to fund your business. Crowdfunding is when you get money from individuals online, so it’s done through a website like capital raising roadmap or GoFundMe. There are benefits and drawbacks to both of these methods, but if you can successfully launch one of them, that puts you halfway there to build the startup you want.
When you’re ready, start looking for funding opportunities and make sure to be patient when it comes to receiving the money. It’s not an easy process, but if you do it right, you could end up with exactly what your startup needs to get off the ground.
3. Be With The Right People
A lot of startups fail because the founder is too involved with everything. If you’re going to launch a startup, then that means that there’s no one else who can do this for you. It’s your responsibility to make sure it succeeds. It might be hard to let go of things, but if you want your startup to get off the ground, it’s time for you to trust others and give them their responsibilities.
If you’re launching a startup, some things can be done when it comes to insurance. Make sure the business is appropriately insured if anything goes wrong, like accidents or injuries. You don’t want something like this to set your company back by any means, and if an accident does happen, you’ll need to notify your insurance company as soon as possible.
When you’re putting together a business plan, it’s essential to have the help of an attorney when it comes to contracts and paperwork.
4. Ensure Following All the Legal Steps
Most startups don’t make it past the legal issues, and that’s because they either don’t know what to expect or aren’t prepared in case anything happens. An easy way to make sure you’re not one of these is by having a lawyer on your team from day one, even if there isn’t much for them to do right now.
If your startup is based out of the U.S, you can usually find free or low-cost legal help through an organization like Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts. If not, there are still many other options available to you, depending on how much money and time you’re willing to spend.
Even if everything goes smoothly with getting funding and you don’t have to deal with any legal issues, it’s good that your founders and everyone else involved know what they’re getting into before anything happens.
A contract should be made as early on as possible because if the startup succeeds, this will become one of the most valuable documents for keeping everything organized.
5. Establish a Location
You can run a startup from anywhere globally, but the most important thing is to choose a location that will work for your business. It can be physical or online, and it doesn’t matter as long as you and everyone else involved can work together.
Online presence includes having your website represent the company and give potential customers an idea of what you’re all about. If nothing else, at least make sure that there’s a social media account for everyone involved so they can show off their skills or talk about new projects in development.
It’s also crucial that your startup is present in the physical world to ensure things are overlooked or forgotten. It can be done through local events, attending trade shows, and donating to charities.
There are many different options available for startups, but these will help get things started and ensure that everything is going in the right direction.
6. Develop a Marketing Plan
The first step of creating a marketing plan is to figure out who your target audience will be, what problems you’re trying to solve, and how this can all benefit them. Without knowing these things, no one involved in the startup can create content or advertisement that would make sense, so always go through this process before doing anything else.
If the product isn’t launched yet, there are probably people out there interested in being beta testers, so find them and contact them directly through social media.
Once the product is ready to go, or even after it’s launched, you can start advertising for this on social media since that has become one of the best ways for startups to get found. Start by creating an account and posting new updates on your company blog before branching out into things like sharing what others are saying on Twitter or even uploading videos to Youtube.
About the Author
Ashtrielle Barros is not only a creative writer but also an excellent marketer. She makes sure that you are left with no doubt about keeping up with marketing and sales.