WestCoastCo. hit the one-year mark on Christmas Day, and we couldn't be happier! As every business will know, the first year is full of pivots and trying to do absolutely everything themselves. Like many people, I've learnt the hard way that I'm not superwoman, so if you're looking to start your own business in the next year or you've already jumped in, here's what you've got to look forward to!
This article was first posted on the WestCoastCo. blog in July 2017 (and it's as relevant today as the day it was written!)
You’ve taken the plunge and started your own business – congratulations! If time management, stress and lack of sleep aren’t bothering you yet, you’re doing incredibly well. In their first few months of business, many entrepreneurs struggle as they’re drowning under the number of hats they have to wear. For most people, hiring someone to do every one of these jobs just isn’t feasible, so it’s worth thinking about how you’ll manage everything on your own before it all becomes too much…
You’re not going to last very long in business if you can’t make a sale, and experienced salespeople don’t come cheap. As our little mantra goes, people respond to people, and when it comes to closing a deal there’s nobody more passionate about your business than you are. You’ll need confidence and time management skills to be able to wear this hat, as it’s going to have to be on your head often to enable your business to stay above water.
If an accountant isn’t within your start-up budget, this isn’t game over for your business. Many small business accountants offer a free review and will recommend software to enable you to manage the financial side of your business with ease. Just make sure that you’re using the software that’s right for you, though. We’ve found that despite some software getting rave reviews, it just doesn’t gel with some people, so use something that you understand well and it won’t just be another chore that you’ll put off!
You need to make sure that your staff (ie you!) are being well cared for. You won’t have anyone around to make sure that you’re taking time off or managing your own wellbeing, so it’s important to include regular self-assessments in your working week. Your business won’t be any good is you’re too burnt out to run it!
Managing your relationships with customers is key to them coming back for more. Allowing time in every day to work out their issues and dazzle them with the nitty gritty of your business should be common sense, but when you’re wearing so many hats it can be difficult to remember that they should come first.
Being consistently engaging both offline and online whilst running your business behind the scenes can be a difficult balancing act. In order to keep things running smoothly, you’ve got to keep the new customers coming in, but that means making sure that the right people are paying attention to you and without time and expertise, this can be a massive expenditure for your business.
There was a time when start-ups and small businesses had two options when it came to marketing themselves. It was a case of them doing everything themselves and hoping for the best, or spending every penny they had on big agencies who would rather work with big clients, so their money was going towards very little, but that’s where WestCoastCo. come in. We know how difficult it can be to wear every one of these hats because we’ve been there and done it, so our digital marketing is priced for small budgets to enable you to take off a hat and afford to keep your business running. Our monthly retainer service starts at just £250 a month, and for that you’ll receive not only social media management, but Facebook advertising spends, your own branded images that we’ll share across all of your social media platforms, unique content in the form of blogs for your website or LinkedIn articles, and a monthly report to keep you up to date. Let us take the hassle out of marketing for you so that you can focus on what really matters – taking care of your customers, your own wellbeing and your business.