Mindset. Goal. Action.

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How to set up the business basics

Many people get so excited and wrapped up in starting a business that they might forget logistics such as costs of running a business, paying taxes, setting up a legal entity, obtaining insurance, protecting intellectual property rights, creating terms and conditions and privacy policy documentation, and getting paid to complete the process of getting started.

Once you have laid down a foundation for your business that you can build on, an important step is to get down to the nuts and bolts of starting a business. Here are eight things you have to do to set up your business.

Figure out Costs. It doesn’t have to take a great deal of money to start a small business, but there’s usually some investment, and you’ll have to figure out where that money will come from. Costs include things like licenses and permits, legal fees, insurance, marketing, rents or rental fees, event funding, and so on. Create a spreadsheet and brainstorm every single expense you might need.

Set up a Legal Entity. Your business needs to exist as a legal entity. Setting up this part of your business depends on the location where it’s based. Each country and municipality has its own rules for doing this. Part of this step is choosing an official name for your business.

Paying Taxes. Depending on where you set up your business, you’d need to have a plan in place for paying taxes; it can include setting up a tax ID. You’ll need to add filing taxes into your business operations and outsource to a specialist if necessary.

Take Care of Insurance. You’ll have insurance liabilities you’ll need to take care of, such as business premises and any staff that you employ. For a service like coaching or consulting, make sure you have insurance against professional negligence.

Intellectual Property Rights. Secure intellectual property rights over any products you develop and any content you create.

Terms and Conditions. Write out your Terms and Conditions or Terms of Service and prominently display them on your website and other important materials. These should cover areas such as ordering, pricing, delivery, returns and refunds, risk, and confidentiality. Include everything your customer needs to know before buying from you.

State your privacy policy. Write a statement that tells customers how you protect and use their data. Include all the data you gather, store, or manage; it’s an important legal requirement. Regulations are getting progressively stricter, and consumers are increasingly aware of privacy issues, especially when dealing with companies online.

Get paid. Figure out how you’ll get paid for your products and services and set everything up you’ll need for taking payments.

It’s easy to overlook these logistics so be sure to include them on your to-do list as you plan and prepare to launch your business, regardless of what you’re starting.

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Tools for the savvy entrepreneur

6 Free Tools for the Savvy Entrepreneur

As a business owner, there are business building and marketing activities. Your business building activities make you money. Your marketing activities get your name out there. Why spend most of your money on marketing activities, when you can utilize a few simple and free products that will generate the results you want?

Here are some basic free tools to get started or take control of your own marketing campaign designs.

1. Survey Monkey for marketing research and customer feedback

Looking to conduct a market research? In need of customer feedback? Survey Monkey will assist you in conducting surveys to better market your ideal client.

2. MailerLite for email marketing

Need to collect leads for your mailing list from your website? When in need of collecting leads from your website or creating landing pages, Mailer Lite is your go-to for creating simple, clean email campaigns, landing pages, and newsletters.

3. Buffer for social media management

Dreaming of automating your social posts? Hootsuite will be your partner. Automate your posts for your favorite social media venues. You control the day and time you want your posts to be released.

4. Pixabay and Pexels for stock photos and images

Don’t have time to take your own pictures? Other people do not mind you using theirs. Find royalty-free stock photos with free for commercial use license.

5. Canva for graphic design

Can’t afford a graphic designer? Canva is a user-friendly online graphic design software that helps you create eye-catching social media headers and posts, documents, e-book covers, marketing materials, invitations, and ads. It also allows you to save your brand color palettes to use with your designs.

6. Grammarly for Chrome for content writing editing

Need a spell and grammar checker? Grammarly for Chrome reviews your content as you type away. It’s a great supplement to the Word speller. When used as an app, you can make corrections when typing online on social media platforms such as Facebook.

If you are like me, an entrepreneur on a budget, who makes the most out of resources without spending a fortune, you’ll find these tools handy. Save your money for bigger investments.

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5 Proven Online Tactics

Trying to build an online reputation can be overwhelming and time-consuming. Here are five online tactics to consider when creating online presence.

  1. Focus on Content Marketing – Good content allows you to build trust and rapport with your customers
  2. Get interactive – Use your blog to encourage interaction from clients/customers, and make a point of responding to them quickly and succinctly.
  3. Be visual – The human brain can process images a lot faster and with focus than text. Use this to your advantage when it comes to online marketing and draw people in with visual content.
  4. Less is more – Too much information can lead to overload for some people. Keep your marketing content to the point and on topic.
  5. Stay Smart – Smart phones are becoming more and more influential when it comes to marketing. Make sure ALL of your content is mobile-ready.

Most importantly, always keep your target market on mind when delivering your content!

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