Make sure you create a company name that you like and represents the “look & feel” of the business. websitextra Avoid using your name, leave that to the law and accounting firms! Sometimes it makes you look small. You always want to make yourself look larger than you are. Lastly, consider a name that begins with an “A” to appear high on lists.
Next, you will need to form a corporation. You can’t just start selling stuff! A good best practice is to get a book and read about the different kinds of corporations. You really need to understand how this works if you are running a business.
You will need an EIN (Employer Identification Number). Then you will need to decide what kind of corporation you want to form. There are C corporations, which is an Inc. companies. You may have heard the term “Cannot pierce the company veil.” That means if you start a C corporation, no one can sue you personally. cashbackhut They have to sue the corporation. Additionally, you file taxes separate from your personal taxes. This is a great option because it allows you to keep your personal and business affairs separate. For S corporations, this is not the case. Your personal and business tax returns are the same. One advantage to keep in mind, if you want to sell the company there are often tax advantages. If you form a C corporation, it is very difficult and expensive to form a S corporation afterward. If you don’t plan on keeping the business for a long period of time, forming a S corporation may be a viable option. Additionally, there are corporations called Limited Liability Companies (LLCs). You can also form a not-for-profit, but you must be careful with that and make sure you qualify.
The best thing to do is consult with your attorney and accountant to find out which corporation is the best for you. Once you form your corporation, you will need to get a business license, register with the state, and get a bank account.
MARKETING YOUR HEADQUARTERS
Marketing your headquarters is just as important as everything else. An outside office is a good route to go because it projects professionalism. The first year you will be spending a lot of time PROVING you are a real business. One of the best ways to prove this is to have an office. This avoids the dog barking in the background while on the phone. Additionally, it helps you focus. zee5news There is no temptation to throw a load of laundry in! An office is also a great place to meet people. You don’t want to constantly have to meet at a coffee shop. Especially today when you are trying to recruit people, you want to convey professionalism.
If a physical space is absolutely not in the budget, you can get a “Virtual Office.” You can purchase a virtual office as low as $99/month and it provides you with a corporate address, receptionist, meeting rooms, and calls going out appear to come from your company name.
You NEED professional marketing materials and business cards. It is essential to find a good designer, but it doesn’t have to be expensive as long as the materials look good. wartechgears You only need the basics to start out. Most of the time you are producing an e-brochure, e-mail template, and a one-page handout to distribute at trade shows and when visiting clients. Do not make these yourself. Even if you are graphically oriented, you shouldn’t spend time doing this. You need to be on the phone making business calls.
Everything you send needs to make a statement and spell “success” with your materials. You need to look like an established company.
You will also need a logo. You may want to get a professional to design your logo that costs a little more. This will make a statement about your company and you will have it for a while. Letterhead is optional. Mostly, you probably aren’t sending a lot of letters, but if you plan to send letters you will need letterhead. You will need a proposal template since you will be sending many proposals to clients. Lastly, you absolutely need a website. If you don’t have a website, you aren’t a legitimate business these days. People want to look you up and if they can’t find you on the internet then it is a red flag. Again, do not make the website yourself. You can always tell if it is a self-made website. Two essential items for your website, is an inquiry form and mobile optimization. Your website must be mobile optimized because everyone is searching on their phone.
Simple questions to ask yourself is who are you selling to? Who else is selling to them? What is your focus? Why should a customer choose you? These are basic questions, but you would be surprised how many small business owners can’t give a good answer to these questions.
E-mail marketing is important; however, it shouldn’t be your main focus. A very low percentage of e-mails actually get opened due to the mass amounts of e-mails everyone receives daily. Cold calling is a favorite of many. It is essential so you must like to cold call. Always leave a message. Many times, people prefer to call back later, however, leaving a message begins to build that relationship. If they are looking for the solution you offer, who will they call? Mailings are also good to add into you marketing mix to send out a couple of times a year. Jumbo postcards mailings are always a good option. There are many professional postcard companies online that will design the postcard and handle distributing it to your mailing addresses. You always want to follow-up with a phone call to get better results. Trade shows are great to attend, but can get expensive. This is a good way though to get your name out there. Social Media is very important these days. If you don’t know anything about social media, take an online course. Many people are on social media so it is a great way to reach those that are on it. Lastly, referrals/networking is extremely important. Once you start to get customers, you will be able to get referrals. And networking is a great way to meet new people. Always attend events that potential clients may be at.