Every small business entrepreneur expects to be successful, but not all of them are. There are certain qualities that set a successful entrepreneur apart from the rest. If you want to be one of them, then it is important to know exactly what it takes to get ahead. Here are five important keys to succeeding as a small business entrepreneur.
Develop A Burning Desire
Starting a small business takes an exceptionally motivated individual. You need to develop a burning desire for the tasks ahead. You need that unwavering passion that will get you through the inevitable hard times. You need to let your business consume you to the point that it is all you think about as you fall asleep at night. This is the single most common quality that successful entrepreneurs share. Without a burning desire growing deep inside of you, it is likely that you will be tempted to quit at the first sign of trouble.
Manage Your Money
The key to a successful business is in being profitable. You need to be making more money than you are spending. If you keep this in mind from the very beginning, you will be avoiding a lot of problems later on. Many times, starting entrepreneurs will spend money they don’t have. This may be on things they don’t even need yet. Ask yourself if you really need to hire an employee for that task. Is it something you or an existing employee can easily do? Will hiring that new employee earn you more money or lessen your expenses in some way? Are they essential to your business as it currently is?
Also, remember that before any other business expense, you need to be paying yourself. If you can’t afford to pay your personal bills or feed yourself, then you will have a hard time focusing on building a successful business.
Know Your Competitive Advantage
Why should people buy your product or service? This is a question that you must be able to easily and clearly answer. It is important to define a selling position that is unique to your business. Whether your competitive advantage is a higher quality product, exceptional customer service or even a lifetime guarantee, it needs to separate you from all of your immediate competition. Your potential customers will need a reason to choose you over someone else.
Apply The 80/20 Rule
The 80/20 rule, also known as Pareto’s Law, states that about 80% of results come from roughly 20% of the causes. This can and should be applied to just about every aspect of your business. Think about what your goals are for a given day. The 80/20 rule says that most likely, 80% of the goals you finished that day were completely by 20% of your effort. If you can figure out what that 20% is, then you can focus on those kinds of tasks, making your days much more efficient. You can use the 80/20 rule to figure out who your best employees are, which marketing plans are the most successful and even which customers make up the bulk of your business.
Ask For The Sale
You must actively ask for the sale from your customers. While it is important to have a great sales pitch or marketing campaign, none of it matters if you don’t ask for the sale. Countless marketing studies have shown that asking for the sale at the end of a sales letter or pitch, is one of the easiest ways to drastically boost your overall number of sales. Don’t make the beginner mistake and miss this crucial step.