As small business owners, if you want to be better off than you need to take more risks and make more money.
Make more money!
First things first, you need to make more money (obviously). Think of having multiple income streams - this means that you are more financially stable if one were to go down.
If you’re a hairdresser, don’t just offer haircuts. This serves a smaller market. If you offered physical products too, maybe even at a discounted rate to your customers, then this could be a good way of getting extra income - especially if business is slower.
Offer monthly subscriptions or do offers, such as having your ‘10th product or service purchase for 50% off’ to increase customer loyalty - the cost of marketing can be expensive so keeping customers coming back to you is the cheapest way to get clients in. Providing good customer service and satisfaction is crucial for getting good cash flow as it means they’ll keep coming back.
You could also offer manicures or massages - this means that potential clients, who are umming and arring, will come to you rather than go to competition - because you offer more services that they could be looking for in one visit. This is also good because a lot of people get gift cards for beauty services (when they don’t know what else to buy you lol - it’s that or a certain sports shop voucher or a body wash and spray set that has a scent of Africa) - therefore opening up an even bigger market - sales would boom during special seasons such as Christmas.
Many businesses could also start up a blog and a youtube channel. Therefore, if the world is suffering any hardships (like the current 2020 crisis), then you can still make money. Podcasts are also very good and are booming in popularity.
If you are in Ecommerce, or sell physical products or even services then venture into selling new products/services. Be innovative. Create funky packages, for example, sell bikinis but throw in resistance bands and a brief workout guide or meal ideas - stand out from the crowd. Unique Selling Points (USPs) are important, be unique - this will increase customer base and loyalty.
Here at Diverso, we dress like normal people rather than wearing suits - this is intimidating and I’m sure that I’d run away too if I had to face someone that dressed far superior (compared to me in my jeans and hoodie). We’re normal people supporting small businesses and we do a damn good job of it too. We offer a monthly subscription and other bits and bobs that make us (Diver)so different to your standard (boring) accountants.
For instance, for a company to be more successful, they need to go one step above competitors. If someone offered an item of product that used plastic packaging and tags, they would be less successful compared to someone who put in time and effort to consider something more sustainable. Someone offering the same product, but instead of using non recyclable materials, they were to use compostable materials to produce labels (or even ones that you could plant and grow a flower out of) and reusable hair ties to attach labels, they would be more successful because they reach a larger market - consumers are beginning to care a lot more about what materials businesses use. Consumer trends change frequently so be sure to check on markets.
‘Entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won't, so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can't’. This is very true and many successful people can resonate with it. Nothing worth having comes easy.
Whatever you do, make sure it’s aligned with your own personal goals - what do you want in life? This isn't a rhetorical question. Ask yourself this and write it down.
You could set SMART targets - in short, make targets that are specific, realistic and can be measured and achieved within a time frame (short or long term). Let’s say you want to make £100 in a week from babysitting. Ask yourself - is it doable - are there many young families in your neighbourhood? Yes. Do you have many connections in the area? No. If the answer is no, then you may need to reconsider if your £100 ideal is reasonable. If you were to babysit Monday to Friday, you’d need to be making £20 per night. Is this possible or sustainable for you? When could you start hitting these numbers by? How will you get your name out there? How much will it cost you to get your name out there? Do you have the money to promote yourself or will it be free?
Don’t be afraid to borrow (no one will expect this) - if it will help you reach your goals, and you’ve evaluated the risk, don’t be scared to borrow to push yourself up a step.
A good ol’ story that my boss man told me is his famous ‘couldn’t afford a can of coke’ story. When he first started the business, he was adamant he wanted to things differently and only charge monthly fees. This worked, but meant income built so slowly, at times he was so poor he couldn’t afford a can of coke. By taking risks, he’s grown a successful business with a bunch of lovely staff and he’s able to support a young family.
Protect yourself at least to the minimum - and just deal with the cost write off. Get a small pension (it saves tax!), income protection, insurance etc - but don’t go crazy, as it could just be a waste of money.
It’s only money
Is it worth having all of the money in the world but being time poor? This money will only go to the grave with you.
It’s only money - you can always make more money, but you’ll never be able to make more time.
Arnold Swarznegger once said ‘Money doesn’t make you happy. I was just as happy with $49m as I am with $50m. But I mean…. I’d rather cry in a Lambo.
Take risks - calculated risks of course.
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Many thanks from the Dream Team at Diverso
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