Category Archives: Business Strategy

Take Nothing for Granted: Choose a Good Name!

To set your business up for success, you must choose a good business name. The wrong name can set you up for failure regardless of what you do, while the right name can give you a huge starting boost. Your name needs to be easily found online, and it needs to describe what you do. It must also be catchy. Your name must survive for years while your company gets established and builds a reputation.

Choose a Business Name and Logo Your Customers Like

You need to reach out to your target audience and find out what name will draw them in. Use MTurk.com to find out what name consumers may like. For $50, you can get hundreds of votes on a business name that will bring customers in. However, do not assume just because you’ve never heard of the name before that no one is using it. Even if you can trademark the name with the US Patent and Trademark Office, you should make certain that no one in another country is using the name.

Choosing a memorable logo is just as important as selecting a good name. Use MTurk.com to find out what logo is most appealing to your customers. You must also scour the market to make certain your logo is not too much like any other company’s logo. It is not wise to deliberately choose a logo like your competitor’s in the hope of stealing customers, as that will probably land you in court.

Leave Yourself Room To Grow

When you file for incorporation, the form asks you to describe what your business will do. Leave yourself room to grow by listing “to engage in all lawful activity” as the purpose of you business. If you limit yourself to “selling widgets,” it will be illegal for you to expand your business beyond selling those widgets. You may find years down the road that you need to change industries to keep your business alive. For example, IBM is now primarily a consulting company. DuPont began as a gunpowder company but now makes all sorts of synthetic chemicals. Like them, your business may have to change drastically as the market changes.

Keep Improving and Take Nothing for Granted

Upon opening for business, you must constantly recheck everything you are doing. Keep a close eye on the market. It will change daily, as will the preferences of your customers. What sells products today may not sell them tomorrow, so don’t take even your most successful marketing campaigns for granted. Try new sales strategies regularly and measure the results.

Don’t assume that the way you began operating is the best simply because you are meeting your costs. New and better ways of manufacturing products and providing services are constantly being invented, and those who adopt them gain a strategic advantage. You must constantly watch your industry—and even other industries—for any new trends and respond accordingly.

In order for your business to succeed, you must choose a good business name, write a flexible plan, and assemble a great team who know how to constantly improve their work. Your success will come as you follow Best Practices and constantly watch the industry and your target audience to keep up with changes that will come.

Take Nothing for Granted: Write a Plan!

The market changes rapidly, and you must constantly change with it. You can never take anything for granted, especially what happens within your organization. Your business will never make millions unless you constantly reexamine every process in your company. Never assume that you will be profitable tomorrow because you are profitable today.

Get the Right People on Board

Your team is crucial, and you cannot succeed without them. Make sure you hire the right people, and make sure that they fit together well. If any member of your team does not buy into the vision of your business, they will hold you back. Motivation is more important than their skill level. Of course they need to have the skills, but they also must want to build your company. They must also be able to follow your lead without always needing to be told what to do.

Offering stock options is a great way to find employees who are truly committed. Skilled applicants who are willing to take a lower salary in exchange for stock options will be motivated to help the company succeed. This approach will also help minimize your losses if your business venture fails for some reason.

Write a Business Plan

No business is going to make millions without a well-prepared plan. Not only do you need to be able to show your plan to investors, but you need to be able to review and revise it constantly. Writing it down can reveal key weaknesses you need to fix. If you do not see any weaknesses as you write it down, look again. Never assume that your plan is the best it can be.

Write your plan for investors and not just employees. Keep your plan simple and easy and never assume that your readers know what you are talking about. Make certain that each sentence in your plan can only be interpreted one way. Since each investor will look for different things, your plan must be very detailed but easy to navigate. To help them find what they need, use a lot of headings so that readers know exactly where to look. Try to explain as many things in graphs and charts as you reasonably can. They are much harder to misinterpret than prose, and many investors prefer looking at them to reading anyway. Avoid too many buzzwords and explain any you do use.

Execute Your Plan

With a good team and a solid plan, you are ready to make millions. Your plan will detail your Standard Operating Procedures and provide your employees with the direction they need. When you put it into action, you may decide that adjustments need to be made. Make sure you write those adjustments down in your plan for your investors and new employees to see. New employees should know exactly how your company works by reading the plan, which will save you on training time.

When you choose the right people, write an excellent business plan, and put it into action, you set yourself up for success.