Starting a business can be intimidating. There are millions of things you need to take care of, and it will seem like an endless workday in the first few years of operations. Accounting, keeping the books, hiring the best workers, actually getting your first customers, and purchasing the right assets – these are just a few of the things that you’ll need to be attending.
It can be overwhelming, sure, and the reward sometimes isn’t enough. That’s why starting a business isn’t for the weak-hearted. Or the person who wants to get his returns immediately. Business is for those who can see the bigger picture, can glean into the future rationally, and can take several emotional beating and still get out of it beautifully.
The advent of the Internet has paved the way for technology to become more accessible for businesses. But for the entrepreneur just starting, what exactly can technology bring to his business? Will setting up WiFi in a newly-opened restaurant get more customers? Will a social media presence increase sales? Here’s how to effectively use technology for any business:
1Create a social media presence. Improve your marketing strategy.
The use of social media in the past five years alone is shocking. Half of the world’s population has a profile on a social media platform, and at least 75% of those have multiple accounts on several platforms. To say that social media will have a significant effect on your business’ marketing and promotion is an understatement.
Any entrepreneur who wants to market their products and services to a broader audience needs social media. There’s just no other way around it. If you haven’t set up, a social media account for your business, do it now. Immediately. It will improve your reach hundredfolds, as well as intensify your campaign to getting more customers.
The beauty of having social media accounts is that you can humanize your brand. Spend at least a portion of your promotional budget to advertisements, but make sure you have tight promotional stuff as well. A Facebook advertisement will cost you a couple of dollars monthly, and you can use credit cards for payment. If you haven’t set up a separate bank account for your business, check out the Credit One card review and see if the card is apt for you.
2Discover applications and office suites which can improve productivity.
Having at least one computer that records every aspect of your business is essential to making your files accessible when you most need them. Most start-up companies rely on free office suites to improve productivity in the office. Emulate this by discovering applications that you can use to simplify your transactions.
For example, Google Sheets and Docs are top-notch office suits that are cloud-based and connects directly to your Gmail account through Google Drive. This is especially helpful for small businesses, like a water-refilling store or a reseller of merchandise. You can track your inventory as well as income and receivables online and update it regularly.
3Streamline your processes by automating it.
Automating some business processes is by far one of the most helpful things you can do for your business. Look for a process that you can easily automate, identify what solutions it needs, and promptly go to work. Some of the standard processes you can automate are: the hiring process, auto-filling of forms, and calendars syncing.
4Take advantage of technology to connect with people.
When we say connect with people, we mean discovering and rediscovering your demographic. Social media is a powerful tool for communication, and you should set up your business’ profile in a way where your customers will be comfortable in approaching you. What we mean by this is, connect them through direct messages, stories, and posts.
Engage your audience every other day. Or once every week, for that matter. Make sure your consumers feel seen, attended to, and a part of a community. More and more people are using social media as the primary contact point to approach businesses, and you are missing a lot of chances if you’re not connecting properly with them.
These are just beginner tips in using technology to further your business agenda. A great entrepreneur is always looking at available resources, technologies, and developments that apply to his industry. Being stagnant is worse than having an obsolete product and/or service. Always remember, your business is as good as your latest sell.