First, what is a start-up and what is the difference with small business? It is in the attitude and goals of the two. While small businesses have a fixed outlook and a specific market to concentrate on, start-ups primarily are designed to grow quickly, reach out to large markets and be a force to reckon with in a very short time. This is one reason why it is seen that most start-ups are in the tech business as it is very easy to reach out to large captive markets online and over the Internet.
These are some of the basic steps to take if your start-up is to grow quickly –
- Have a business plan in place – A business plan is the vehicle that will take you places. There are top financial consultants and industry experts who can be roped in to devise suitable strategies for you. It will be a comprehensive plan detailing future marketing approaches, cash flow projections, setting of sub goals to reach larger objectives, optimum allocation of resources and financial projections. This document will be so comprehensive that you can even submit it to financial institutions for additional credit limits or for getting partners on board.
- Devise digital marketing campaigns –In modern business settings, traditional advertisements in print and electronic media is passé, online digital marketing campaigns carry a lot more weight. This is because more and more people are researching online to look for similar products and services. If your website does not figure at the top of results pages of major search engines you’ll surely miss out on business opportunities and growth. Entrust you marketing campaigns to specialized digital marketing companies that use advanced techniques such as SEO and Social Media Marketing.
- Outsource liberally – Try as you might, you simply cannot handle or monitor all aspects of your start-up. Hiring highly trained personnel and investing in hardware and software to run departments in-house will pull you down financially. The same functions can be outsourced to dedicated agencies at a fraction of the cost without compromising on the quality of output.
The main function that you should outsource is bookkeeping. This task is tedious and repetitive and does not require any real managerial discretionary powers. Such crucial heads such as accounts payable and receivable, bank and credit card reconciliation will be processed promptly and updated reports will be regularly submitted to you. You will thus have a strict control over your finances and can make suitable diversification and expansion plans.
Data entry and document management should also be outsourced as infrastructure processing and cost of installing security systems can be very costly, something which as a start-up you can ill afford. Outsourced agency will build up a database for you that will be precise and accurate in all respects while ensuring fool-proof security.
- Conduct business health check up – It is crucial that you have a thorough control over your start-up and be in the loop about its state and operational efficiency at all times. And it is also important that you entrust this responsibility to external financial consultants. Get a second opinion as it is always difficult for any person closely associated with the business to view things objectively.
What is your take away from a business health check up? Opportunities will be identified where you can optimally allocate your cash resources, recommendations to increase ROI on market spends will be chalked out and any possible working capital crunch will be intimated to you. Most importantly, a check will be made of whether all statutory requirements are being complied with. All these will only facilitate growth for your start-up.
There are a whole lot of variables that will make sure that your start-up gets off to a flying start. Follow these simple basic ones and you couldn’t possibly go wrong.