Squared Academy

Work Smart: 3 Practices for Entrepreneurial Success

Work Smart: 3 Practices for Entrepreneurial Success

As an entrepreneur, you probably have heard the misconception that most small businesses fail. In reality, only about 20 percent of small enterprises fail in the first year. With spirit, motivation and hard work, you may be able to not only lift your business off the ground but also succeed for years to come. To help you get the job done, here are three tactics from Squared Academy that all entrepreneurs should follow.

Create a Cohesive Marketing Plan

In modern marketing, you have access to social media such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, along with advertising potential through your website and content. No matter which channels you use, your marketing should have a coherent and unified message. For example, the messages you promote on social media should be the same as those you present on your website.

Your content across all platforms only needs tweaking rather than a complete overhaul. According to Spade Design, you should establish guidelines for your brand. Every piece of marketing should deliver your company's core values and mission. Additionally, your content should target specific demographics. Learn about the people who make up your audience and create content based on their preferences. For example, some viewers may enjoy long, in-depth videos whereas others want a quick 30-second sound bite.

Marketing should not be about churning out as much content as possible. Instead, your message should be carefully crafted and targeted. Figure out how to use your social media preferences to your advantage - Squared Academy has lots of great resources to help you learn the best strategies.

Draw Up a Payroll Plan

Payroll is a time-consuming process. When you have an organized system, you are less likely to face IRS penalties. Plus, paying your employees on time - an important factor for maintaining your team’s trust - is seamless every single pay period. First, figure out whether to pay your employees on a salary basis or at an hourly rate. Next, determine the appropriate classification for each worker into one of the following three groups:

- Employees

- Independent contractors

- Interns

An automated payroll system automatically performs calculations and deductions. However, when you have a small business, it might make more sense to utilize payroll templates instead.

A template is pre-formatted, and all that you need to do is fill in the information. Payroll templates may include tools to track your employees' time, schedules and invoices.

Learn To Network

Business networking refers to establishing a connection among various professionals, business owners and yourself. Other companies may offer you advice, knowledge, services or contacts. When you learn to network, you are more likely to see opportunities for joint ventures and partnerships.

To increase sales, you may want to consider joining your local chamber. A local chamber of commerce is a network for companies that works within an industry or in a particular location. Groups can be held nationally, statewide or locally. When you are a part of a chamber of commerce, you often benefit in a number of ways:

- Your business receives increased credibility.

- Professionals in your network provide advice and assistance.

- Your business gains access to marketing opportunities.

- You may obtain discounts on insurance, office supplies, marketing or payroll services.

The chamber of commerce can also serve as a voice for your needs to the government.

Starting your own business takes hard work and determination. If you want your business to make it in a competitive world, you need to take a lesson or two from successful entrepreneurs. Marketing, planning and networking provide keys to success.

Guest article submitted by Gloria Martinez, creator and writer at womenled.org

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