Entrepreneurship has never been a quick or easy path. But one could argue that in an increasingly volatile and competitive market where competition is rife and change comes thick and fast, entrepreneurs face more risk than ever before. We have, in the digital age, a plethora of opportunities that can allow people of all sorts of backgrounds with all manner of skills to take a bite at the entrepreneurial apple but if they are not careful they can join the 50% of SMEs that don’t make it past their first 5 years of trading.
Walk the line
One of the most common areas in which nascent businesses go wrong is in walking the fine line when it comes to business spending and investment. We’ve all heard horror stories of new entrepreneurs maxing out on overheads in their early days and keeping themselves perpetually on the back foot with lavish and impressive spending that never resulted in sustainable business. But it’s also entirely possible to go too far in the other direction In an effort to conserve their profit margins and keep the bottom line healthy on paper, entrepreneurs can under invest in their businesses, which can be every bit as damaging. There are certain “must haves” that every startup needs and it’s folly to attempt to run a successful business without them. While there’s nothing wrong with being thrifty, try to focus not on saving money so much as getting good value for your money. Here are some areas where it’s okay to spend, so long as you know you’re getting your money’s worth…
The power of the premises
Many new entrepreneurs tend to run their businesses from home or embrace hotdesking instead of going all out on office space. But depending on the nature of your business this may be an impediment that prevents top tier clients from taking your business seriously. A prestigious office space in central London, for example, might be a significant overhead but it will also demonstrate to clients that you are a serious player and worthy of their business. If your business involves retail, a cheaper premises may result in hugely reduced footfall which is still highly important even in the age of digital marketing.
Invest in growing your brand
It doesn’t matter how good you are at what you do if nobody knows who you are. While all marketing costs are a pretty safe bet providing a historically healthy return on your investment, not all marketing costs are created equal. Any agency worth their salt will take a good look at your business and its needs and work with you to create a strategy that facilitates sustainable growth on a scale that you can cope with. As important as it is to grow your brand, you also don’t want your business tripping over its own feet. Whether they help in the form of social media training or the creation of original content to help to give your business a voice and personality of its very own, investing in marketing solutions is paramount for sustainable growth.