If you are running a small business, you are not alone. According to Forbes, there are nearly 28 million small businesses in the United States, 22 million of which are self-employed. Running a successful small business is certainly a challenge, but it can be done and here are three tips for your business, from startup to grown up.
1. Communities and Networks
It is so important to network, especially if your business is new. Go to neighborhood association meetings, join your local chamber of commerce, and engage your community by doing things like sponsoring the local high school's prom and putting out discounts or specials. It is a good idea to be invested in the community you do business in for altruistic reasons, but doing good for the community can also be good for your bottom line if more people are able to associate the money they spend at your business with doing good in the community.
2. Create Great Online Presence
Business is increasingly being done online these days, and if you're one of the millions of small businesses in this country operating a physical store, this does not mean you are going to be cut out of the game. It does, however, mean you ought to consider maintaining an online presence where your customers are most likely to be. Create profiles for your small business on some of the larger social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and even some of the smaller but growing platforms in your area. It doesn't take much time ultimately, but make sure to keep your profiles updated and filled with fun, engaging content to keep interest high.
3. Earn a Second Degree
Even if you already have a college degree, earning a degree in a relevant field, such as a master's in organizational leadership online, at a college that allows you to complete coursework from your home or business when you have the time. Getting another degree allows you the chance to learn the skills necessary to successfully manage a business and grow it in an organized fashion.
As you know, running a small business can be difficult. Some months may leave you wondering if you're cut out for what you're doing, and you may be tempted to give up. Don't. Maintain a positive attitude, or at least have the will to carry on through the difficult months. Your customers might just notice.
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