7 Things to Know Before Launching Your Startup
Mildred Austria

Launching a startup comes with many challenges. Understand the market and your audience and have business and marketing strategies for a successful business.

Launching a startup is an extremely exciting time in any business owner’s life, but it can also be extremely complicated. Before you launch your startup, there are seven key things that you should know about your business to ensure that it is successful. Make sure that you have a strong business and marketing plan, as well as an in-depth understanding of your customers and their buying habits as well as wider market knowledge such as the ins and outs of the FTSE 100. Taking all of this information into account can help you to launch the most successful startup company you are able to, and help your business to grow quickly and sustainably.

1. What's the FTSE 100?

If you’ve ever pondered the question "What's the FTSE 100?“understanding the wider market is essential if you are going into business ownership. The FTSE 100 is an index of the London Stock Exchange’s 100 largest companies in terms of market capitalization. Its full name is the Financial Times Stock Exchange 100, in reference to the two companies that put it together: The Financial Times and the London Stock Exchange. Looking at indexes such as the FTSE 100 will keep you up to date with what kind of businesses are doing well, in addition to the current market trends in terms of stock trading.

2. What is your business plan?

One of the most important things for starting any company is having a detailed, goal-oriented business plan. Work out why you are starting your business, what you hope to achieve through it and how you are going to achieve these goals. Come up with detailed explanations of the products or services you will be offering, and why people will want to buy them. Make sure that your plan is well researched and clearly presented so that you can easily convince investors that they should take a chance on you and your company.

3. What is your marketing strategy?

Another absolutely vital element for any business, particularly a startup, is to have a strong and well thought out marketing strategy. Marketing is one of the most important elements of most businesses, particularly young businesses, as growing your customer base is absolutely essential at this time. Take a lot of time developing, tweaking and improving your marketing strategy to ensure that it is as effective as it can possibly be. The aim of any marketing campaign is to increase brand awareness as well as to convert as many people as possible. A solid marketing campaign can make a business successful.

4. Who is your target audience?

Identifying your target audience not only helps you as a business in terms of marketing but it can actually help influence further business and strategy decisions. Knowing your target audience properly, not just who they are but also the kinds of things that they enjoy and their product knowledge is necessary for curating new marketing techniques, especially if you want to take advantage of affiliate marketing or try to reach out on social media platforms. Who your target audience is will influence your steps here - if you are a business focused on mostly Gen Z consumers you may want to make use of social media platforms such as TikTok or Instagram, whereas if you are targeting mostly millennials on social media it may be more useful to focus on Facebook. Don’t just identify your target audience, but really take the time to understand them and the kind of marketing techniques that generally work best for different groups.

5. Who are your closest competitors?

Understanding your competition is a great way to keep ahead of the game and make sure your business is always improving. Knowing not just who your competition is, but also what they are doing, can help to make sure that your business is always keeping up, if not taking active steps ahead of the game at every opportunity.

6. What is your financial plan?

Consider where you are getting your finances from, as well as how you plan to generate enough income to sustain the business. Think about getting business insurance to protect yourself and your assets in the case of any disaster. Make sure that you have planned an emergency fund to keep your business going if you are not turning a profit as early as you had hoped to, and make sure that you can cover all of your business expenses comfortably. If you are just starting out and have not secured this money yet, work out where you can get it, for example, the bank, and what the application process is for this so that you are well prepared.

7. Know Your Community

This point is relevant both in terms of your physical community and other businesses in your industry. Make sure to get to know your community, and try to initiate collaborations and teamwork within that community. Networking is absolutely essential when you are starting a new business, so set yourself up with friends in every corner and try hard to get local businesses on your side. Set up collaborations to help to grow your audience, but make sure to offer something back to the businesses you are working with.