How To Build A Startup While Working From Home
COVID-19 has allowed many of us to have ample time alone while social distancing. Maybe you’ve picked up a new hobby like baking sourdough bread, coaching yourself as you start a new fitness regimen, or finally taking the time to learn a new language. Whatever you’ve deemed ‘your quarantine hobby,’ it’s likely you’re experiencing and contemplating new ideas and ways of thinking.
As entrepreneurs, we can’t help but continually think of innovative ideas to help solve problems. If you’ve been wrestling with a new business model but aren’t quite sure if you have the bandwidth to bring your idea to life while working from home—think again because now is an incredible time to jumpstart your startup.
Every startup needs a business plan. It provides a map for you to follow as you begin delving deeper into launching your startup. Business plans are a tool you use to better serve you, your investors, and your customer base.
Most business plans include a few fundamental components—an executive summary, company description, market research, product summary, marketing & sales strategy, funding opportunities, and financial projections. You need to know what your product or service is, what problem it solves, how you are going to solve that problem, and how you will be financially supported. The Small Business Administration has a guide that can help you build a framework.
Take time to hash out the components of your business plan—it will help you both in the short and long term. And don’t be afraid to ask for advice from entrepreneurs you trust. Your business plan will be one of the first things future investors will want to look at, so be sure to do thorough research and vetting.
Your target market is the group of individuals who will want to buy and use your product or service. Think about who they are, what they want, and how to reach them. It’s helpful to create customer profiles so you can better understand who your target market is and where you can find them.
Start thinking about some of the demographics that will be associated with your target market. Are they millennials or baby boomers? Do they live in an urban or rural setting? How much will they be willing to pay for your product or service? Are they active on social media? Once you have sorted through these questions, you will be able to create an efficient strategy to target these individuals.
Whether you’re building your startup by yourself or with others, you will want to begin to build out who will be a part of your support team. Do you have other entrepreneurs you can bounce ideas off of? Do you have a list of potential investors or banks to solicit for funding? Do you have access to legal advice? Do you know someone who can help with marketing and social media outreach?
It’s important to divvy up your workload and not take everything on yourself. Be sure to lean on those around you so you can not only take some stress off of your plate but also hear the feedback and advice from those interested in seeing you succeed.
Now is an opportune time to launch your startup so take some time to sort through your business plan, define your target market, and build out your support team.
Derek Rundell, is a successful business leader, operator, and serial entrepreneur. Derek has founded, managed and sold businesses in the technology, media and finance industries. He sits on several boards and serves as an advisor/investor to numerous established businesses and startups. Startups are Derek’s real passion, and in addition to building his own portfolio of technology, media and financial ventures, he invests in and mentors startups and entrepreneurs. He is passionate about sharing his knowledge and helping other businesses succeed.