SUCCESS HAS NO SHORTCUT OR MAGIC PROCEDURE
Achieving a successful life and building a profitable business take time, since you will have to build your reputation as customers learn to trust and rely on you, one by one. Unfortunately there’s no shortcut or magic procedure to success -- or if there is, I haven’t found it yet. If you spend your time looking for shortcuts, you will find one -- right out of business that comes with consequences because “if you jump up, you will be cut short but if you grow up, you will stay up.
Despite there are no shortcut rules for succeeding in business, the guidelines below can be very helpful in building a successful business:
1. Create a Useful Product or Service
Above all else, you should not go into business purely for financial reasons. Running a company involves long hours and hard decisions; if you don’t have a better reason than money to keep going, your business will more than likely fail, as many new businesses do.
So it’s important to create something of use that is going to benefit society as a whole. If you do something you truly care about, you will be in a much better position to find customers, connect with them, and keep them coming back.
Once you have decided on the type of product or service that interests you, focus on how to do things differently from the competition: Do your research, find a gap or an area ripe for innovation, and position your business in a way that sets it apart.
2. Simplify Your Message
Customers don’t just shop for a brand and its products, but also identify with its core values. You have to stand for great customer service, good value and innovative alternatives to your competitors’ offerings. Also encourage your customers with great service and they will be confident to recommend your company to a friend.
Knowing who you are and what you stand for ensures that you don’t waste time or money on messaging that doesn’t represent you or resonate with your customers.
Ask yourself, why did I start my business? Be honest -- this will help you establish an authentic value and voice. Then distill your message into something simple.
3. Market Yourself
Marketing is a powerful tool, but it doesn’t have to be expensive. You need to get yourself involved in invaluable publicity. Use yourself. Make a fool of yourself. Otherwise you won’t survive.
Also look out for ways to stand out from the crowd and draw the media’s attention such as Social Media to your business.
Tools like Twitter and Facebook are wonderful ways to get your message out to a wide audience. Social media is not only more cost-efficient than advertising, but it also offers great opportunities for innovative engagement with your customers. Use it to your advantage.
Remember that there is a difference between selling and marketing. In my experience, selling a product through social media doesn’t work -- it’s better to simply communicate with your customers in an authentic way and have fun. As you build an online profile that people can identify with and trust, you’ll find that they will soon become customers.
The feedback you receive on social media can be invaluable, especially when your business is just starting out. Listen to your customers’ comments about your company’s offerings to gain an understanding of what you are doing right and wrong. You can also use this feedback to sharpen your social campaigns and measure the effectiveness of your calls to action.
Find your tone, know your brand, do things your own way, and create waves. The free advertising will follow.
4. Keep On Enjoying What You Do
If you genuinely love and believe in what you do, others will take notice and share your enthusiasm.
If you find your interest flagging, it’s time to make a change -- switch from operations to management, move on, expand into new territories, anything that interests you. To find success, you need to be fully committed or your work will show it.Thank you!
THE TRAITS BUSINESS STARTUPS HAVE IN COMMON
The traits or features that remarkable startups or entrepreneurs have in common help them to run with amazing concepts and become successful. These traits have nothing to do with if an idea is good or bad. This also points to the fact that some startups succeed more than others even though they are on the same course. However, some features which successful startups have in common that distinguish them from their counterparts are as follows:
1. Founders are highly passionate about their ideas.
Don't start a business without passion. You won't be able to see it through if you are not really into your idea. Founders of most successful startups started searching for solutions to a problem they cared about and made it their focus.
"You have to be burning with an idea, or a problem, or a wrong that you want to right. If you're not passionate enough from the start, you'll never stick it out," --- Steve Jobs.
Founders with great passion tend to inspire others to greater success, and they look out for those traits in new hires. According to best-selling authors and workplace strategists Kevin and Jackie Freiberg, passion enables innovation and creativity and makes employees want to stay in their jobs and contribute, even when they’re not feeling their best.
2. They don't try to do too much at once.
Laser focus is immensely crucial for the success of every new business. What is the one thing your startup is known for? Your startup should be focusing on the one thing that makes you stand out. All the successful and well-known startups you know today are doing the one thing that makes them stand out. And when you become successful in that first idea, you can move on to the next one.
Most great startups start out to provide simple services or products, but as they grow, customers and users tend to demand more. The company needs to improve and make solutions even better.
"The most important things for startups to do is to focus. Because there's so many things you could be doing. One of them is the most important. You should be doing that. And not any of the others." --- Paul Graham.
3. They value their customers and take great care of them.
Does your startup know how to design and deliver great customer service? Successful startups are constantly seeking to satisfy their customers. The importance of reinforcing awesome customer service should be made clear among your employees. Design your products with the customer in mind. Remarkable startups listen and respond to their customers' evolving needs and expectations.
Strive to make your customers feel that signing up with you was one of the best decisions they ever made, and you will likely have their business for a very long time. As your product changes, the best opportunity you have at delivering the best service is a close relationship with your customers that value their feedback and user experience. Your customers are the people that support you, trust you and most importantly, rely on you for the service or product you offer. They could have chosen your competitors, but they chose you. Make them a part of your evolving development process. Startups that grow with their customers ultimately win.
4. Entrepreneurs don't forget the importance of culture.
Successful startups establish and maintain some of the best company’s cultures that promote and motivate employees. The team behind a product or service is one of the most important factors for a successful business. The first people you hire for your startup are critical to your startup's success. And cultural fit is as equally important as competence when hiring your best people.
People with the right skills and personality are more likely to influence your small team to greater heights than just competent hires. Culture takes time and effort to build, but as long as you don't lose sight of it, you are on a journey to building a great company. It is well known that Google has a unique culture and some of the company's success can be attributed to this culture.