(NC) A recent small business poll revealed that over half of Canadians have thought about owning a business. If you’ve been thinking about making your business ownership dream a reality, here are four steps to help get you started and set up for success:
- Finalize your business plan. A business plan is your road map and an important exercise in defining what your business is all about, and what success looks like to you. Key components of the plan include an outline of your business’ strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats; a forecasted cash flow; your channels of distribution; and a detailed marketing plan that includes research on your competitors, target customers and advertising tactics. Digital marketing solutions like Acquisio’s Promote can help owners reach new customers with targeted online advertising campaigns.
- Register your business and open a business bank account. Registering your business is important to establish your brand and enhance its credibility. It’s also required if you earn more than $30,000 in revenue annually. Ownr.co offers an affordable and straightforward service for business owners in Ontario, Alberta and BC to register their business in less than five minutes. Similarly, consider separating your personal and business finances from the start to make your life easier down the road. Once you’ve registered your business, you can set up a business bank account online in less than 15 minutes with RBC’s online application.
- Create your brand. A successful business needs a great brand identity. More than just a pretty graphic, your brand is the essence of how you want to be perceived and your promise to your customers about what they can expect. Once you’ve defined your brand’s purpose, mission and key messages, create a logo and visual identity. Consider working with a graphic designer for more professional guidance.
- Explore financial tools and integrated solutions. Entrepreneurs should consider signing up for invoicing software like Wave to simplify the process of invoicing, tracking expenses and balancing books. There are many other companies that offer helpful things like payroll assistance and free templates to create profit and loss statements.
Find more information at rbc.com/beyondbanking.