Happy New Year everyone! Inspired Graphics Media and Entrepreneur Resources wish you a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2006. To aid in your prosperity, we have compiled a short list of three things to help get your business in order and start the year off right:
1. Write or update your business plan. Whether you’re dreaming of a new business idea or have been in business for 5+ years, a business plan is key. Not only useful when seeking funds from potential investors, this document also serves as the template for how you will run your company, sales predictions, and important market research. A thorough plan ensures that the new entrepreneur has diligently researched his or her field before jumping in headfirst. It also helps the seasoned business owner as he or she expands its business to take on more products, services, or locations. Businesses change. Make sure you keep your plan updated to account for these changes.
2. Create a marketing plan for the year. It does not have to be complicated, just a few things to do each month in order to promote your business. Your plan can be as simple as advertising monthly in the community newspaper (if that’s what your target customers read), sending out a promotional e-mail to your mailing list, or hosting an in-store workshop. Remember to get creative. Having a plan will also make things easier when your business gets busy. With a schedule already in place, all you have to do is implement it.
3. Set financial goals. This budget should cover the next one or two years and include all sources of incomes and expenses, sales goals, and expected cash flow. Many companies make the mistake of using the same budget from year to year. As your business grows and changes, so should your budget. When making this financial document for 2006, make sure you refer to previous budgets and actual receipts to see where your spending habits have changed. Perhaps you need to cut down in one area or allocate more money to another. If your business has been doing well, this budget will serve as inspiration to work even harder. If it hasn’t, it will serve as an incentive to turn your company around.
What are you waiting for? Get started on those tasks now. Happy 2006! 🙂
How to Start Your Own Business, from Entrepreneur.com
Business Planning Tools, from BlackEnterprise.com
23 Hours to a Great Marketing Plan, from Entrepreneur.com
Eight Ways to Make a Budget Work, from Microsoft.com
Drafting Your Budget, from Entrepreneur.com