Building a small business means working round the clock. No real vacations, no time offs, and no dumping the responsibility over someone else’s shoulder.
We’re not sure why you chose the grind.
But now that you have, we’d like to congratulate you.
You’ve made a bold move because only 5% of the world’s population chooses entrepreneurship.
It’s surely a tough journey.
But if you do it right, it’s just as rewarding.
In this post, we will cover 6 tips that can help ease your early days and help you lay a strong, unshakeable foundation to grow your business successfully.
1. Know that you’re running a small business, not a one-person business
Speaking of 2022, one of the most common mistakes people make when they begin a small business is that they assume they have to do it all on their own.
They do so with the intent of saving more and having complete control.
That’s a destructive approach unless you’re running a one-person business.
Recommended read: Self-Employed VS Small Business: Why the Difference Matters?
Finances, marketing, product management, customer service, and resource management are all different and demanding domains.
If you hold yourself responsible for everything, there’s a high chance you’re going to mess things up and burn yourself out.
Consequently, you may lose your existing customers, waste investments, and lose health.
Your business will suffer instead of growing.
So, one of the first things you should do when trying to grow a small business is to accept that you need help and build a team to help with your business goals.
2. Know your financial options
For a small business to grow, it needs funds.
Many entrepreneurs choose to go the debt route by taking out loans or using credit cards.
While this is a viable option, it’s not the only one and definitely not the smartest in the long term.
Small business growth hacking is all about minimizing risks.
So, instead of taking on additional debt, consider these financial options:
- Crowdfunding: This is a great option if you have a solid product/service and an audience that’s willing to invest in your business.
- Family and friends: You can always approach your loved ones for financial help. Just make sure you have a proper structure in place and treat it like a business deal by creating contracts, specifying interest rates (if any), and having a clear repayment plan.
- Grants: Check with the government or other organizations for business grants that you may be eligible for.
3. Aim for a small, dedicated, and resourceful team
If you’ve been smart enough to realize the need for teamwork in growing your business, there’s another common mistake you need to look out for — building a big team.
And we mean that both in terms of quality and quantity.
You don’t need to hire big names (i.e., the best professionals in the industry), and you don’t need to hire a lot of people.
Instead, consider hiring only a handful of energized people. Prioritize soft skills, field knowledge, and professionalism over field experience.
If they’re good at learning and have a dedicated drive to work, they can help you make your business a success.
Remember, you can teach technical skills, but you cannot teach soft skills. If the person is skilled at what they do but not dedicated to work, they can only keep your business running.
They’ll never help you grow it because they won’t be interested in going the extra mile. So, look for people with the right drive.
Also, initially, it’s a good idea to hire someone who can take care of 2-3 roles instead of one. The smaller your team, the better you’ll be able to communicate and innovate.
4. Build a strong online presence
Digital presence is a great opportunity for any business in the 21st century.
Even if your target audience lives in your vicinity, it’s essential to establish a website and maintain active social media pages.
- It builds credibility and helps you become an authority in the industry
- It eases customer experience as they can approach you without leaving their home
- It serves as a gateway to potential partnerships and investments
And the best part?
It’s much cheaper than physical advertisements.
You can begin marketing your business on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube simply by creating and sharing relevant content for your target audience without any substantial investment.
You can also try to create video content as it has taken over the internet. In a variety of settings, videos may captivate and involve your target audience.
There are options to create interesting short reels and upload full-length videos on well-known social media platforms.
Using any online video editing software, you may create and edit persuasive and appealing videos for your audience and attract the right kind of consumer attention.
Here are some easy marketing hacks to help kick-start your small business’s online growth.
5. Build a blog
Blogs are also a part of your online presence. But if we were to recommend one aspect of digital marketing that can boost your small business’s growth by leaps and bounds, it would be blogging.
How so? Well, blogs help you build customer relationships and generate leads.
Basically, people read blogs to learn something new. When you share bits of your business and educate them about subjects relevant to your product/service, it helps them trust you and regard you as an authority.
It also helps them view you as an approachable and customer-friendly entity when they interact via comments or emails.
Plus, if you link your blog with an analytics tool, you can monitor the traffic and get some very useful data to generate leads. You can further narrow down your target audience or market your service/product to them via email marketing.
Now, blogging need not be on websites only. You can maintain a blog wherever you’re likely to find the majority of your audience. If you target other business owners or CEOs, it’s a good idea to maintain a blog on LinkedIn.
Plus, this approach is highly resource effective. It takes only about 30 minutes to share something valuable with your target audience (no need to go fancy, use free tools like Canva to design graphics and pair them with value-adding content).
If you’re blogging on a social channel like LinkedIn, you will have minimal platform costs. And if you have a website, you’ll only have to pay around $20 – $60 monthly.
6. Keep a close eye on competitors
Small business owners often make the mistake of assuming it’s too early to compete.
But once you’ve entered a market, you’re already in the competition.
Do not hold yourself back by either thinking too less or too much of yourself.
You’re in the field and are just as equal.
So, make sure to regularly conduct competitor analysis and learn from their flaws and strengths.
A key tip to boost your growth by 10x is to look for that one complaint that your competitor receives frequently and fails to address.