So you have turned your business idea into a reality, it is now a legally registered entity meeting all the statutory requirements. You have obtained the finances to start it. You know the right target market for your products and services. Congratulations!!!
Moving on swiftly to the other spokes of the wheel called entrepreneurship; day to day management of the finances of an organization and marketing of its goods and services. How to?
Consider the following in the day to day finances of a business
Empower yourself on matters financial. Know how to read simple financial reports e.g. income statements, cash flow statements, the balance sheet. If in Kenya, follow publications like the Business Daily, get to know financial trends globally, locally that will impact your business, learn from other entrepreneur stories. Learn how to keep simple financial documents e.g. ledgers that keep a record of money earned and money used. Okay?
One mistake that many entrepreneurs make is mixing business finances with personal finances. Earn a salary from the profit made. Unfortunately, some entrepreneurs assume that money has been made just by seeing cash, yet they are not sure they have made a profit to enable a salary and begin spending it on personal use. Have separate bank accounts for your business and your personal use. Be disciplined in using business money.
Manage costs. For example rather than hire permanent employees for certain functions get part time help or the services of a consultant until you have wings to fly to get fully fledged employees in all the business functions. Know that some costs are fixed e.g. rent and some are variable. Variable costs are easy to manage by getting alternative suppliers, moderating on use or negotiating prices.
Get financial software. These days there are a wide array of software that one can use to manage their finances; some are customized and tailor made to meet the unique needs of a business.
Keep on monitoring financial performance; get trends from past performance of your business to make forecasts for the future.
Seek professional help from financial experts to help you monitor the financial health of your business. Ensure that they are duly registered by professional and accredited bodies.
Marketing entails the Marketing Mix also known as the seven Ps of Marketing:Price, Product, Promotion, Place, People, Physical Evidence and Processes.
The product that you offer can either be a tangible product or service. How relevant is it to meet the needs of your target market? Many a time the product does not remain static but changes from time to time in order to meet the needs of the market. An entrepreneur has to constantly remain innovative. Benchmark your product with the rest of the market, what are they offering?
There are different pricing strategies that can be used to price a product. Prices can never remain static over time. They have to remain cognizant of the shifting economic environment. Different pricing strategies can be used for different target markets even if the product is the same. Pricing can also be used as a promotional strategy to bring in clients. Pricing should also meet regulatory and government policies, for regulated products. An entrepreneur should ensure that their pricing strategy is competitive enough to make profit but at the same time have sufficient uptake by the market.
This refers to efforts used to make products visible to your target market. One can use paid up advertisements in mass media, bill boards, brochures, sales promotions, personal selling through a sales force. In this day and age, online marketing is one avenue that can be used also to promote ones goods and services.
Your product or service should be geographically readily available to the target market. Every product needs distribution channels e.g. distributors, retail points, riders to make their products readily available to their target market.
Process refers to all the steps that are involved in producing your goods and services right up to the moment they are introduced into the market. The process flow should be as smooth as possible.
People refers to the human capital that you have employed or collaborate with in your business. An entrepreneur should aim to employ top notch and high calibre staff.
Physical evidence just as the name suggests refers to all the physical evidence of your products or service .e.g. banners, brochures. If for example you want your product to have connotations of high quality and being premium then use high quality and premium promotional material.
So as an Entrepreneur ensure that your business’ finances are well managed for profitability and also use different marketing tools to ensure that your goods and services are visible to your target market.
We will close the discussion on Entrepreneurship matters by looking at what making a Business Plan for your enterprise entails as well addressing the much needed Work Life balance, healthy lifestyle , especially for some entrepreneurs who tend to over exert themselves.
A happy new week to all!!
© Kwambie Nyambane,
Lead Writer and Founder,
The Best Lifestyle Blogger Kenya – BAKE Awards 2018 Nominee
The writer of this article is a Business Development Professional in a leading bank in Nairobi Kenya. By night she is a Wellness and Lifestyle writer. She holds an MBA in Marketing from the University of Nairobi and is passionate on matters Entrepreneurship. The Small and Medium Enterprise (S.M.E.) segment is a key driver of the economy of her native country, Kenya.
From what I remember from my Marketing class are the 7 Ps. The seven Ps represent the different things an enterprise should consider when Marketing its Products or Services.
For businesses that sell services, the focus these days is more on Customer Experience as opposed to Customer Service alone. That is the client should be delighted with very touch point and interaction with your organization, the Customer Journey that is.