If you fear having to abandon your idea of owning your own business, do not head to lock the door for the final time just yet. While about 80 percent of new businesses fail within the first 18 months, your business does not have to be one of them if you take careful inventory of what is currently going wrong. Here are four ideas you may want to consider to save your business.
Sell Excess Inventory and Equipment
Take a look at your business assets to determine what products are making you money, and make a list of the equipment that you need to make those products. Chances are, in the beginning, you bought things like transformers that you are not currently using. There are markets for your equipment, so this is an easy way to add badly needed cash to your operation. To go back to the transformers example, you could sell such things to businesses, like Solomon Corporation, that buy surplus equipment. If there is any other equipment that you have that is not being used, then don’t just keep it in an unused inventory. Sell it and use the funds to keep your business afloat just a little longer.
Look for Grant Sources
Many communities have programs to encourage new businesses to come to town with large grants, forgiven taxes, and other incentives. The Small Business Administration can often help you locate resources. Additionally, other federal government grants may be available to you because you belong to a special group. Even some corporations have established grants to help entrepreneurs start businesses related to their core business. Take free money wherever it is available.
Define What Makes Your Business Unique
Many new businesses fail because they haven’t communicated to potential customers what makes them different from the competition. Start by writing a value proposition outlining who your target audience is and why your company is the place that they need to spend their money. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes to determine why they should buy from you. Explain the differences in an uncluttered written statement. This is best done with unique and semi-extravagant marketing techniques. For example, using social media is a great way to do this. You can create a funny YouTube video—like those that Bear Butt, VidAngel, and Purple make for their products to show how their products are different or better than others on the market. As you share such content via Facebook and other social media outlets, your intended audience will be attracted to your brand.
Become a Great Leader
Decide that regardless of what it takes, you will build your business into a success. Look at faults within yourself that may be causing the failure. Some will find that they are spending too much money without consciously thinking about it. Others will find that they need to learn a new skill. Still others need to work on their marketing techniques. If that is something that you may lack the talent in, don’t hesitate to hire a professional. Your ROI will be much greater if you do!
If it seems that your dreams of owning your own business are fading away, then it is time to face the brutal reality that things have got to change before they get worse.