Getting a startup off the ground is very exciting but challenging. You need to be able to keep your expenses within your capital and still be able to deliver a service or product that’s new, unique and exciting. Most of the time, you’ve got the product or service down pat and you know the customer experience you want to deliver. What gets to most entrepreneurs are the little details in running a business where everything meshes.
Before, you could say that they had lesser options but a simpler way of doing things. You needed a phone, a register, bank receipts and a place to set up shop. Now, technology has made things easier but at the same time a little more complicated. If you want to be able to take advantage of cheaper ways to build your brand and advertise, you need to be literate in computers and the internet and set up IT infrastructure to support the technology.
To help you understand just how technology can make things easier for startups, here are some tips:
- Opt for VoIP phone service providers instead of a traditional landline phone. However you look at it, an internet-based phone is cheaper and more flexible than a landline phone. People who call you never notice the difference and always assume you have a landline phone. You may think that a mobile phone number is enough, but it does not give the impression of stability you want to present to first-time clients. Just make sure you have the IT infrastructure needed to support internet telephony.
- Use a virtual office before investing in actual office space to rent. If you’re the only one working on your startup or you have other people with you, ask them to work from home for the meantime on their computers. You can acquire virtual office services that let you give the impression of an actual office without having one. That way, you can test the waters and perhaps gain more capital before you start renting office space.
- Use the power of social media. You shouldn’t think merely of likes, +1’s or retweets. What you need to do is get your product or service out there for people to know. There are lots of sites, groups and forums that have your target market all bundled up ready to reach, so find a place that accepts advertisements or lets you plug your company online. Just make sure to appear casual and fun. In this early stage of your company, make sure to respond to all comments, requests and messages. When people see that you’re willing to answer casual inquiries and online messages, more of them can be encouraged to ask about your product or service.