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Something from Nothing – Building your Startup on a Shoestring


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Every business has its struggles at the outset. If you’ve ever had a solid idea for a business, you’ve got to go through that inevitable startup phase. This is probably the most difficult part of building up any company as it is a swift lesson in how to prioritize your finances. When we take steps to realize our business idea, we end up hitting a brick wall. This is primarily because of finances. Let’s show you some of the common tribulations involved with starting a startup on a shoestring, but also what you can do about it.

The Lifestyle of the Entrepreneur

If you are going to be an entrepreneur, there are no two ways about it, there will be major financial issues, but only if you go into it with the wrong attitude. The most important thing to remember when we start building a business is that it’s not going to happen overnight. With regards to our day-to-day living, we need to be prepared to make some sacrifices. It is one of the best lessons as an entrepreneur- to learn how to cope with financial issues.

It never feels good, but it’s how you earn your bootstrapping stripes! If you can bootstrap your life, you can bootstrap your business! The great thing is that there are plenty of ways for you to tighten your belts. But while you may think that batch cooking meals is fine, what about the fact that you’ve got to be an entrepreneur? You’ve got to show potential clients and customers you have what it takes, and this means you’ve got to conceal your financial trials and tribulations. So this means you’ve got to be savvy when it comes to your business purchases.

With regards to focusing on yourself, you should always make yourself look impeccable. Whether this means finding a second-hand Chanel suit or utilizing SMARTY SIM-only deals to keep the smartphone bill down, it’s these things that we have to put at the forefront of our minds. When you start to consider how your lifestyle can be altered, it gives you fantastic lessons in operating on a shoestring further down the line.

Learning the Importance of Following Your Passions

When we have an idea for a business, we need to follow it 110%. If we have no enthusiasm for it, this will be the undoing of us. But this is why, if you’re going to set up a business or a startup on a shoestring, you’ve got to follow your passions. Following a passion can be one of the most important ingredients to a shoestring business. And especially when you define a shoestring business as one that requires less than $1,000 in startup costs. This is why your special skills become imperative to the overall success of the company.

If you have a love for a certain type of art, you’ve got to figure out how it translates into a business. If you are someone who is keen on photography, you can translate this into a variety of business ideas, such as wedding photography. The important thing when you start to incorporate your passions is that it will make you realize if you are able to cope with the rigors of starting up a company. If you have the passion for it, those emails at two in the morning won’t seem so bad!

Learning How to Excel Yourself on a Shoestring

These days it’s never been easier to promote ourselves and actually gain key insights into our target markets. Tools like Google Analytics are worth their weight in gold to the entrepreneur who has no money to their name. There are so many different tools, but it’s important if you are to start your business on a shoestring, that you make the most of all the free tools out there, but disregard the ones that mean nothing to you.

There are so many resources out there, but you can use a small amount of money to invest in the right education. This is a deductible expense, and it’s important to remember this when you are trying to develop key components of your company. There’s a variety of resources out there, such as Udemy, which provides many courses to boost business dealings, but it also gives you a solid foundation to dealing with the stresses that come with being an entrepreneur. But when we talk about excelling ourselves, there are so many different courses available that we can spend a long time in the preparation stage, thinking this is the best methods to prepare, but the reality is that things change so often that you have to remember that, for example, with something like search engine optimization, certain techniques can become redundant.

Marketing relies on a handful of fundamental tenets, and you can certainly utilize a lot of these to get ahead, such as marketing on social media. But the important thing to remember is that everybody is doing this. How can you make things different? You can promote yourself on a shoestring, but it’s to do with bringing a creative eye to proceedings and being aware if your business is different enough to promote in unique and interesting ways. We can all learn how to create explainer videos and podcasts, but there are so many others out there, we have to rely on marketing tools to get us a lot further down the line.

Why Getting Help Is Invaluable During the Startup Phase

Starting a business on a shoestring is, in many ways, about operating by ourselves. We think that we need to do it all because this is the best way to save money. But there’s a lot to be said for bringing the right people on board during key fundamental stages. For example, you do not know everything when it comes to graphic design, so you will have to reach out to someone who is able to provide your business website with that style to elevate your website from a half-baked WordPress piece to something that people will actually click on.

But it’s not just about getting hired hands to help with superficial issues, the importance of getting the right people on board will give you inspiration and build up your business in the right ways. When we start to bring freelancers onboard, the temptation is to keep them at arm’s length, however, these are the people who are going to dedicate themselves to us in the short term. If we find the right people, we’ve got to hold onto them. Building a business on a shoestring will involve getting freelancers into the fold, but we must realize that these are the people who we won’t just rely on right now, but come to depend on them for many years to come.

It’s important that we don’t pick up people and drop them as soon as they do your bidding. When we have freelancers onboard, the best thing we can do is to utilize their skillsets, but also look at what their goals are. There will be a time when your business needs extra people on board, especially in a salaried capacity. And this means you will have to find the right people, and go through the rigmarole of sifting through resumes and navigating the interview process, but also make sure that these people are going to do the job and not jump ship as soon as they find something better paid. Freelancers are the best way to build up your business on a shoestring, but it’s the perfect trial run to find people who will stick by you.

Do Not Underestimate How You Should Protect Your Business

A business will only go so far if it is not sufficiently protected. Building a startup on a shoestring means that we overlook some of the things that we may deem as too expensive for this embryonic phase, such as anti-virus programs.

It’s such a major lesson to remember that, when we are building up a company, we’ve got to protect it with everything we’ve got. This means the technical components need to be in place and being aware of the signs of phishing scams and cybercrime, but also, we need to have the right insurance in place. It’s a legal obligation to have insurance, but you may think that if you are running the business by yourself, you can very easily sidestep this, however, this is a cardinal sin.

Building up your business on a shoestring means using the money in the right way and investing in the right components, physically, fiscally, and emotionally, and this is one of the most essential investments you will ever make. Starting a startup on a shoestring is going to be tough. You find that you have to cut corners, but you must remember that it all comes from you. If you have the right attitude, it is going to be the best thing that will happen to your business, regardless of the financial perils.

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