So, you’ve finally decided to ditch your 9-5 and take the plunge and go it alone. Maybe you’ve been feeling uninspired by your job, overwhelmed by your workload or just always liked the idea of being a digital nomad. There’s no doubt that being self-employed can be a hugely rewarding and liberating endeavour, both professionally and personally. However, with the media reporting that nine out of ten start-up ventures fail within the first 5 years, the steps between turning your inkling of a career idea into a fully-fledged successful business can be a tricky one. Here we outline the three simple steps you need to take control of your career and quit the rat-race for good!
Fail to plan? Plan to fail
Arguably the most imperative part of any venture – the plan. Simply jotting down your goals and aspirations for your company can help to clearly define where you envision your business to be heading. It also allows you to iron out any potential hiccups during the very early stages before they can snowball into a real problem.
A business plan also makes you look confident and in control to potential lenders, as it reassures them that you’re putting some serious consideration into your next steps.
Know your audience
This may sound like an obvious step, but many fledgling brands fail to adequately define their target demographic. Without knowing exactly who you’re aiming for, your branding strategy could fail to reach your desired customer base in a way that they understand, or it could miss the mark entirely. Age, gender, income and even level of education can all play a pivotal role in determining your business strategy and will essentially form the entire backbone of your enterprise. The more you know, the better, so go ahead and dig down into the metrics and do your market research to define and solidify the persona of your consumer. Get specific and create a brand identity that your customer is guaranteed to relate to and understand that they are the target audience for your product.
Research the competition
You can’t be all things to all people, but when launching a new product or service, there is something to be said about knowing where you stand within your niche. A key stage in your brand’s development involves taking note of your competitors’ strengths as well as weaknesses, which will help you to further define the direction in which you want (or don’t want) to take your business. This information will help you to determine your own corporate identity and outline all that you are as a trading entity. From the shape of your logo to your carefully crafted mission statement or the precise shade on your letterheads, it all boils down to the distinctive brand persona you will create. Although it may seem unnecessary, during these early stages of entrepreneurship, proactively strategising your corporate branding and brand compliance as outlined here – https://www.templafy.com/corporate-branding-brand-compliance/ – will allow you to create a company that is always consistent, coherent and stands out against the competition.
This is a collaborative post that was ghost written for More From My Career.