Article written by Elena Stewart, a certified life coach specializing in the teachings of Brené Brown, Danielle LaPorte, and Marie Forleo.
As the world begins to emerge from the pandemic, business owners and aspiring business owners are often unsure how to proceed. Life these past couple years has certainly been different, and many companies have struggled to stay afloat. Here are a few tips to help you start or grow your business entity at this interesting time in history.
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There are several advantages to forming a business entity, such as a limited liability company. An LLC limits a business owner’s personal liability for enterprise debts, provides tax benefits, lessens the paperwork required and provides flexibility to the proprietor. Each state has different laws regarding the formation of an LLC, so be sure to check into the requirements in your state before moving forward. To avoid paying expensive legal fees, consider using a formation service to create your business entity.
Additionally, if you plan on working at least some of the time from your home, you’ll want to set up a home office where you can work without distractions. If that requires some renovations, like expanding your house or adding windows to let in more natural light, don’t fret. As an added incentive, such improvements also raise your home’s appraisal value!
Market Your Company Properly
If you want more people to hear about your business, you need to market your products or services. As you probably already know, social media now plays a huge part in a company’s ability to get its name out to the public.
In addition, if you plan to add images to your marketing materials yourself or even with a professional, try using compressed joint photographic graphics files for easier emailing. Try a JPG-to-portable document format converter to turn images into PDFs and preserve the photo’s integrity. These tools even enable users to combine numerous JPG files into one PDF so you don’t have to send multiple images.
Network to Add to Your Success
As they say, in business, it really is all about who you know. In many industries, new clients are gained via word of mouth. This means that the more people you meet and tell about your business, the more customers you could acquire as a result. Further, networking can be a great source for information, suppliers and additional resources. Think hard about people to reach out to, even considering friends or acquaintances you have not connected with since your schooling. There are many online resources available to help you find people’s contact information.
Find Reliable Accounting and Bookkeeping Software
Monitoring your company’s finances and keeping accurate records is critical to business success. Invest in a cloud bookkeeping system so all your business’s financial information is in one place. Look for software that also features electronic invoicing so you can get paid quicker. With simplified bookkeeping and tax filing, you’ll be able to focus on other essential business tasks.
Use Technology to Your Advantage
There are tools available to help entrepreneurs with billing, distribution, client management and more. Take advantage of this technology to make your life easier. Chatbots allow small companies to interact with potential or existing customers using artificial intelligence. This enables business owners to remain available 24/7 to interface with clients on new orders, issues or questions.
Automation tools free employees up to focus on less mundane tasks that cannot be outsourced to technology. Such duties could include appointment scheduling and data entry. This allows you and your staff to complete your highest-priority work without sacrificing valuable time conducting repetitive tasks. Additionally, automating some of your business functions could reduce the number of staff you need, potentially saving you thousands of dollars each year.
Though times have been tough for small business owners for the last few years, there are ways to help streamline processes as the world begins to move on. Market your business, find networking opportunities, invest in reliable bookkeeping software, and utilize technology to find business success.
Tracy Lynn is a boudoir photogapher for brides-to-be in the St. Louis area, and a mentor + coach for photographers looking to level up their businesses with better systems and processes.