If you have an idea for a service or product that doesn’t exist yet, and think you have the motivation and expertise to take it from idea to success, then start your own start-up company. Below we have some advice for budding entrepreneurs, and how Edinburgh College can help you get started.
Take time to study
Before diving straight in and applying for investment, consider going back to education. Whether your business will be technological, creative or business-oriented, going back to education and taking time to perfect your craft could be worthwhile later. According to Medium.com, “The skillset of a founder often defines the focus and the culture of a company”. Make sure your skills are up to standard so you feel prepared.
Do a business plan
Read our blog How to Turn your Hobby into a Career to find out more about business plans and what courses can help you to develop your business skills. A solid business plan will help you out when trying to get investment. It will define all of your goals and how you hope to get there.
Don’t expect profit right away
When starting your own business, you will be putting all of your resources into it. Investment is needed way before your product or service is advertised. Christian Reber also says that in his start-up “there were times of high profitability, but also times when we were close to bankruptcy”. Getting started will be difficult, but will help motivate you to keep going.
Join the start-up community
For guidance and advice it’s worth spending time with like-minded people. Meet up with other entrepreneurs at conferences and meet-ups. Talk to them about their story, what challenges they faced and how they overcame them. It may also be useful to find a mentor, someone who has successfully started their own business who can help guide you forward. Becoming active on LinkedIn or Facebook groups for start-ups may also help you to engage in conversation and learn.
Find out who your customers are and talk to them
Identify who your target audience is. What do they look like? What do they buy? By asking these questions and pin-pointing who your customer is, you will be able to market to people who are most likely to purchase. Spend time and money on marketing when your product launches. Get your name out there, to the right people, and see how it is received. The lessons you learn at this point of the process will outline how your business should operate going forward. There are courses at Edinburgh College that can introduce you to these concepts.