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Launching a business

 "  Are you creative? Want to change your career, do something different and channel your creativity in to a business of your own? Fabulous! Sounds like you're flirting with the idea of launching your own business. It's an exciting but often daunting step to take, whether you're going it alone or have a partner in crime along for the ride. We certainly don't claim to be business advisers here at Saffron Souk, but five years of marketplace management has given us a little insight. With that in mind, we've come up with 5 questions you should ask yourself to help you get from business dreaming to action.

Question 1.

Ask yourself, are you starting a business to simply indulge in your hobby or are you planning to develop that thing you're passionate about, build a brand and make a living from your new venture? Sellers of all sorts from hobbies is to licensed companies are welcome to open shop fronts at saffronsouk.com, but when you're setting up a new business, it's important that you understand from the outset what your business means to you and where you see if going. Think about the time and money that you're able to invest to get your business off the ground. Once up and running, what time can you continue to invest, given your other commitments of family, work, etc. Understanding how you want your business to develop is essential to manage your own expectations from the start and keep you powering on through the hard times.   

Question 2.

Do you have a clear vision? Research, hard work and determination are all required to launch a business and as obvious as it may sound, you need to know what it is that you do! Take it from us, you're better to do one thing well rather than many things averagely. Mediocrity will not bring you success. Know what you want to sell. What is your unique selling point, your USP? Specialize and perfect it. Be confident, clear and focused about what you offer. Understand your market, secure your supply chains, know your competitors and get your pricing right.  

Question 3.

Who is your target market? Address your audience and be social. Although joining a marketplace and opening an online shop front is brilliant step in the right direction, you can't stop there. You need to constantly work at broadening your audience. Interaction and building your audience though social media, physical events, newsletters and your branding is essential to the success of any small business. Make people pay attention. When you're on a budget and going it alone, social media is a cheap and effective tool. Use it. Create a voice that reflects and enhances your brand. Use beautiful imagery.  

Question 4.

Can you grow and adapt? Start small and scale up in an organised and manageable way. Although you may have a head full of ideas and much excitement, keep focused and the workload manageable. Control quality and keep your vision strong. Change is enviable, so embrace it and experiment. Failure is part of the process, so don't be disillusioned when things don't go to plan. Learn from your mistakes and move forward. Do what you do well, master it before expanding your collection.

Question 5.

What help can you call on? Launching a business can transform you in to a jack of all trades overnight. Design, product development, marketing, accounts, customer service to name a few. Surround yourself with help. Whether paid or favors begged from family and friends, say yes to offers of help and keep your mind clear and focused.  

Good luck!

Launching a business may not be easy, but it certainly is exciting and rewarding. Keep in touch and when you're ready to open your online shop, hit Saffron Souk up!