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Market and Sell

This last step in our startup process is all about getting the word out about your business so customers come through your door (or perhaps to your homepage). First and foremost, you’ll need to study up on your target audience to develop a marketing message that will resonate with them.

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Establish a Brand

One of the most important assets you can develop for your business is a powerful brand. Brands are not just logos or tag lines. Brands are the culmination of who you are, how you’re different from your competition, and why a buyer should do business with you. Whether you’re an established company or small start-up, a brand has tremendous impact. A brand instills confidence, creates loyalty, and many times can command a premium price. But most of all a great brand reduces a buyer’s perception of risk and makes the purchase choice easy.

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Find Great People

In a small business, the impact of a single team member can be enormous. Every person you add to your team must be a star. Is that possible? Absolutely. First, make sure you define what a star is within each role of your company. Then you can go find them.

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Organize Logistics

Logistics are not the most exciting aspect of starting up a business, but having your logistics in order can mean the difference between success and failure. Having your books in order, your contracts buttoned up, your money safely managed and your downside covered are each critical to your personal and business future. Accountants, lawyers, bankers, insurance agents—the big four—are some of the people that can help you get organized and put you on a path to starting up smart. These service providers will be instrumental as you grow, too.

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Find the Funding

This is a critical step. You’ve got to find funding for your business but ensure that it’s the right kind of funding. Yes, there’s the adage, “beggars can’t be choosers,” but the fact is, you must be selective and smart when seeking money for your startup or it could turn your dream business into a nightmare. To identify which form of financing is just right for you, think about your long-term personal and business goals and the type of business you’re planning to launch.

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