Starting a business in your town is a great way to give back to your community, create local jobs, and achieve your dreams of entrepreneurship. Today, Flint: Our Community, Our Voice shares some tips and resources to help you open and market your new business!
Earn Your Business Degree
If you’d like to learn more about business management before opening your own company, you may want to go back to school and earn a degree in business, communications, accounting, management, or a related subject. By enrolling in an online degree program, you can study and launch your business simultaneously. In fact, you may consider this option if you’re interested in taking classes remotely!
Create a Plan
Drafting a business plan is the key to staying organized in your early days of entrepreneurship. Even if you’re itching to officially launch your company, make sure that you have a basic business plan down on paper first, with details about your offerings, operations, and budget.
Register for LLC Status
While you do not technically need to register your business as an LLC, doing so can provide you with numerous perks, such as tax breaks, limited liability, and flexibility. While you could hire a lawyer to help with this process, you could save lots of money by using a formation service. To find the right company, read reviews for a few registration services so you can make an informed choice.
Next, it’s time to spread the word! While advertising via social media is essential, it’s a good idea to supplement this with some old-fashioned approaches, as well. For instance, there’s a lot to be said for keeping some business cards on hand to pass out to potential customers. If you aren’t sure where to start, you can use this business card design template for free!
Find a Space
If you need a physical space in order to operate your business, you’ll have to start searching for the right commercial building for rent. Looking for commercial real estate is different from finding a place to live! To find the ideal space, MileIQ recommends connecting with a real estate agent who specializes in the commercial sector. You can also drive through your area to look for “For Rent” signs in business districts!
Hire Your Team
Running a business by yourself might be doable for a while, depending on your offerings. But chances are, you’ll need to hire a few employees from your community early on. How can you find the right people for your new team? 4 Corner Resources recommends looking into hiring freelancers, contractors, and part-time employees first if you don’t need full-time help just yet. This can be a more affordable option for entrepreneurs on tight budgets, and some of these professionals may be interested in taking on full-time roles down the line.
Try to recruit locally, and think about how well someone would fit in with your company’s culture before making any hiring decisions. Oftentimes, a culture fit is just as important as someone’s professional skill set!
Engage With Your Community
Being a local business owner gives you the opportunity to make your town a better place to live. How can you go the extra mile to deepen your engagement with your community? Keap recommends partnering with local nonprofits or donating to charities based in your town, sponsoring a sports team, allowing organizations in your area to host community meetings at your space, joining your town’s chamber of commerce, and setting up a scholarship for a local college student.
Starting a business in your community can mark the start of an exciting new chapter. While entrepreneurship is a lot of work, you’ll also bring valuable new products and services to your area. With these tips, you’ll be ready to get your business degree, find a space for your company, and form an LLC.
Flint: Our Community, Our Voice is where block clubs, neighborhood associations, and crime watch captains come together to share their perspectives. Call (810) 348-5332.