If you are planning on starting a business this year you are undoubtedly full of excitement. While raw excitement, infatuation and determination are all great, you need to make sure that you proceed with caution so as not to encounter the common pitfalls that lead to business failure. Avoid making these five beginner mistakes many new entrepreneurs often make.
Very few businesses are going to go from launch to successful revenue monster overnight. Yes, it happens, but not as often as one might think. So, go into it knowing that you may potentially need a long time to get your business off the ground. If it happens quickly, that’s a bonus, but it’s better to have realistic expectations and not be disappointed.
It doesn’t matter how great your product or service is — if nobody knows it exists, your business will die. You have to market your business and put it directly in front of your target audience. Simply assuming that your target audience will magically discover your brand is foolish — be prepared to grind hard in the beginning to generate momentum.
Will your business name be infringing on an existing trademark? Is there a domain name available that will make it easy for potential customers to find your business online? Is your business name available on all the popular social profiles?
These are just a few examples of basic due diligence that can help you avoid problems down the road. A basic word mark search through the Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) should be your first step. If it looks like your business name isn’t going to infringe on a mark, see if the domain name is available and then move on to social media profiles.
Running a business “on the fly” without a well-thought-out plan is entrepreneurial suicide. On the fly can lead to mismanagement of funds and resources, which will ultimately sink your ship. While you can’t predict (or prevent) all obstacles you will encounter, setting up some long-term planning will help you avoid inexcusable mistakes. For example, a long-term marketing budget will help ensure that you have funds to cover the marketing, while still leaving enough money to handle operations and payroll.
Being an entrepreneur is perceived as “cool” these days, thanks to mainstream media It requires that you embrace the lifestyle that comes with the territory. Long hours, constant problem-solving and stress are just a few things to expect, along with Saying goodbye to a major chunk of your free time and sleep, Limiting time for family and friends, Putting hobbies and personal interests on pause and Making your new business the top priority in your life.
Are you up to it? Then you have surmounted one of those five big “beginner” mistakes and are on your way to success.