“Being Challenged in Life is inevitable, Being defeated is Optional” – Roger Crawford
Your Startup has made it to the year of 2015, Congrats! That’s the end of one cycle of hurdles, but it’s the beginning of a brand new cycle.
Here at Startacus we’ve decided to issue you a few challenges to help your Startup in 2015, from customer growth to marketing success, we’ve outlined a few objectives for you. Overcoming these kinds of challenges will lay a strong foundation for future challenges and even strengthen any current endeavours you’re trying at the minute.
Set financial goals each month
It’s not all about the bottom line, however it’s still really important. Try setting some financial goals at the start of each month. These could be income amounts to surpass, invoicing timelines on time, ensuring a certain number of sales or even being able to provide a discount. This will give your startup an insight into what work needs to be done to grow financially. It will also give your team a look into what work needs to be done to maintain an income at a standard. It can also help you to improve your admin processes and sales or shipping policies.
Improve your Website and Social Media SEO It’s the information age, so everything and everyone is findable online, and more and more businesses are opting to go online with sales, promotion and networking. With this huge influx of online bodies, how can you even hope to be found? How can your startup stand out? Easy! (Sort of) Superior SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation. This is what helps sites like Google, Yahoo and Bing to find your site, and the better your SEO, the higher up you’ll appear on their listings. Imagine it. Your Startup as the first link that appears when using Google to look for your product instead of your startup by name. That’s publicity which is very difficult to buy, but very doable with the right time invested and work done.
Create a Plan for growth and development – Here’s a tough one, highlighting how you’re going to grow and expand. Putting all of this on paper is a great way to target your shortcomings. Facing these shortcomings will be one of the biggest challenges a startup will ever have to face. Market problems, financial shortfalls and management trouble are only the tip of the iceberg, but don’t get discouraged. Being aware of these problems is half the battle, the other half is addressing them. So don’t worry, you’ve got this!
Outdo the Competition – This is the wonderful world of business – It’s all about competition. That’s the harsh reality pill for the day. Now, unless you have an amazingly innovative product that no one else has and that no one can recreate, then you’ll probably have to compete with a number of competitors, and the pond is only so big. By the way, Startups are usually the guppies, but growing and being competitive means you can be the shark. Identify your competition, and ensure you get more followers on social media, featured more often for reviews, make sure you aim higher and higher as you grow, as the more people become familiar with you, the more people will come to your startup over others.
Land more deals, bigger accounts, and the more prestigious partnerships and sponsorships.
You have to give yourself that edge.
Try something Different – Not a lot to be said about that one, very few businesses survive operating under the guise of ‘business as usual’. You’re a startup, you shouldn’t even have an ‘as usual’ yet. You may have a product you sell, or a platform, but is that all there is? Have you tried a new marketing campaign? An update to the product? A new colour scheme? Anything? Very few people are comfortable with stagnant business, especially if they never bought or used it in the first place, if it’s entirely unchanged they’re much less likely to use it the second time round.
There you go folks, some challenges for you in 2015! If your startup can rise to these tasks, it’d be nothing short of a surprise if you don’t start seeing much more effective results at your startup.
Good luck! Let us know how you get on with the challenges on Facebook, Twitter or even just leave us a comment below.
Mi-IDEA Manchester Networking Event
27th Sep 2016
The teams from CISCO and Manchester Science Partnerships have teamed up to create Mi-IDEA, a post-accelerator designed to foster and nurture digital innovation in the North West of England.