Become An Entrepreneur In 2015

Posted April 24 2015
canstockphoto21522526 (1)

Welcome to 2015 the year of the entrepreneur. So for many that means taking that idea and turning it into reality. For you, will 2015 be the year when you will become an entrepreneur?  Be encouraged in 2015 there will be plenty of opportunities for entrepreneurs.  As a matter of fact according to a Forbes.comarticle, this is in part to the stable economy and opportunities provided by innovation.

Because of the strides that were made in innovation in 2014, the year 2015 will be full of opportunities for entrepreneurs.  Innovation has brought online learning to the surface. This helps entrepreneurs in the fact that we can learn just about anything. This is true whether we are researching something on Google, watching a YouTube tutorial, or taking an online course for certification.  All of this helps entrepreneurs propel themselves forward.

Innovation has allowed entrepreneurs to have easier access in funding in the form of alternative lenders and crowdfunding sites. This includes the presence of such alternative lenders such as Kabbage.com.  With the advancement of innovation we have also seen an increase in crowdfunding sites such as Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and RocketHub. Previously new entrepreneurs had to seek funding from traditional sources such as banks and if they were rejected they could not start their ventures. So now there is hope and new start ups can gain the capital they need to get started.

So the climate is optimal for you to get started. So know that if you are thinking about starting a business you are in the company of millions of others like you.  Some choose entrepreneurship for the flexibility and love the idea of working for themselves. While others may decide its time to leave corporate America behind. Whatever your reason is, its a great time for you to become a business owner.

So before you do anything else you must conduct some level of self evaluation. As you prepare to take this step it is important that you evaluate your readiness to become an entrepreneur.  Here are a few questions you should ask:

  1. Are you passionate? If not, you will need to be.
  2. Are you business savvy? If not you can learn to be, but this is an important characteristic.
  3. Do you have thick skin? This is a definite prerequisite to becoming a business owner.
  4. Is self-employment right for you? Interview yourself.

Okay, now that we have gotten that out of the way. Take a look at our list of 5 tips to help you get started on your path to entrepreneurship.

  1. Write a Business Plan – Every business should start with a business plan. Your business plan is the footprint of your business. Start with the Small Business Administration (SBA). They have great tools to assist you to prepare your business plan. Take a look at their step by step suggestions. Initially it does not have to be lengthy. But should include the following components:
    • Executive Summary-A snapshot of the business.
    • Company Description-Describe your business. What will you do? How will you be different?
    • Market Analysis – In the beginning you may not have a lot of data. But start somewhere. Research your business industry. Know your competitors. Who are they?
    • Organization and Management – Detail the management of the business. If you are a sole proprietor this is a piece of cake.
    • Service or Product Line – Detail what you are selling-services or products, and what are they?
    • Marketing – Develop a marketing plan. How will you market your services? What will your sales process be?
  2. Start with a website –Your website is an important component to your business and is a powerful marketing tool. Your customers need to be able to find you. So building a website is an important step in starting your business. If you do not wish to pay a professional to build your website there are entrepreneur friendly ecommerce sites such as shopify to assist you.
  3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – Today understanding SEO is an important step to starting and growing a business. SEO should be included in your marketing strategy. By implementing a sound SEO strategy you will increase the number of visitors to your website.  Take a look at this beginners guide to SEO.
  4. Make it Legitimate – The not so fun side of being a business owner is the legality of it all. However this is an important step. First make sure to apply for any business licenses required. Depending on your location you may be required to apply for a business license at the state and county level. No matter the size of the business you will be required to have a business license.

Determine your business structure. Decide if you are going to remain a sole proprietor or take the steps to become a legal business entity; corporation or LLC.

Although applying for business licenses and choosing the right business structure are not fun tasks, in addition to ensuring compliance they will bring you more business in the long run. As potential customers research your business they will want to know that you have all of your ducks in a row.

  1. Start Thinking Like an Entrepreneur – You probably already have the skills you need to become an entrepreneur. So now start thinking and acting like an entrepreneur. Being an entrepreneur means that you will have to develop a different mindset. So cultivate your new entrepreneurial mindset and get started.

Start your journey today. Welcome to the awesome land of entrepreneurs.

We would love to hear from you. What is your motivation for starting a business in 2015? Tweet us your comment @CBA_direct

About

Chantal Towles

Chantal Towles, MBA, is President of Creative Business Assistants, LLC, an incorporation and virtual assistant services company. For more than 22 years, Chantal has provided her expertise to entrepreneurs, small to mid-sized companies, and law firms. Chantal earned her MBA from Wilmington University. To learn more about CBA visit www.cbadirect.com.