Building a new business is challenging. They are a lot of decisions to be made, so you can find yourself making poor decisions that could harm your business’ chances for success. Although there is no fail-proof plan for the success of a business, there are some common mistakes there are a lot of first-time business owners make that have negatively affected businesses.
Listed below are the top 8 common mistakes business owners make according to modern business insurance solutions, Talisman (See this link to find out who is Talisman Casualty Insurance).
1. Over analysing your business plan
Overthinking your business plan is one of the mistakes first-time start-up owners do. Your business plan doesn’t have to be a hundred pages and cover every single detail of your business. If you do this, chances are you’ll keep procrastinating because you’re trying to make everything perfect. However, there is no such thing as a perfect business plan. You would make some mistakes as you build your business but the biggest mistake is not having a business plan before you startup. With business plans for start-ups, the idea is to outline your strategy and not have everything figured out.
Some of the information is your business plan should include:
Background -skills you have that will come in handy while running your business.
Vision -what you hope to achieve by developing your business.
Goals -set milestones your business needs to reach for it to be considered a success.
Product-type services and products you intend to offer.
People -experience and background of the people who would be on your business team.
Marketing-strategies that would help you communicate and get the attention of your target audience.
Competition – the businesses in your industry who offer the same or similar products to you and how you intend to differentiate your brand from theirs.
Measurement -how to track your progress to ensure your business is proceeding as planned.
Funding -where the finances necessary to start and operate your business will come from.
Exit plan -how the business is to survive if you are no longer actively running it or use suited.
2. Failing to plan
Planning is a very tedious and time-consuming task but without a plan in place, (business idea research, marketing potential) you would be running in blind. Some of the most important plans to draw up for your business are a marketing plan, a financial plan and a business plan.
3. Trying to do it alone
As a small business owner, you are often expected to be Jack of all trades but it doesn’t always have to be this way. By effectively delegating some tasks, you can quickly build your business by freeing up time for business activities that need your special expertise at the same time building a team that is primed for success.
4. Not setting SMART goals
Goals provide directions. When running any business, having clearly outlined goals will keep you building steam operations on track. When you set SMART goals, you identify and outline specific steps that would help you get there.
5. Not making use of technology
For the business owner, technology provides new opportunities for you to save money and work more efficiently. Although new technology can be quite intimidating if you’re unwilling to adapt to new technological advances you can harm your business in the long run and give your competitors an edge over you.
6. Undervaluing your services or products
A lack of confidence in your business offering or a fear of failure can cause you to underpriced price your service or product. This is a very dangerous road to tow because it undermines the unique value your business brings to the table – it can open you up to frustration and resentment.
In addition, trying to up your price at a later time in most cases is hard. This is why it is important for you to thoroughly explore the market your business is in, so you can set the price point for your products or services at a good rate.
7. Not knowing who your target audience is
One of the most important parts of any successful marketing campaign is, knowing your target audience. It is not just about strategies and marketing budgets, in order to find where your target audience is and who they are, you would have to do some market research. Working out, who are trying to reach will help you better tailor your marketing strategies to gain and keep their attention.
8. Not prioritising marketing
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to marketing business because the best kind of marketing will depend on your target audience and the kind of business you run. However, the mistake you would make is assuming that your business would not need marketing or just sitting and waiting for the business to come to you. Spoiler alert, it won’t!