Mums in Business Round-up: Bootstrapping your small business

Bootstrapping is an excellent way to start up a small business on the smallest budget. 

What exactly is bootstrapping?  

It’s one of those buzz words that sounds like something else but in a nut shell, bootstrapping is when you start up a business with little or no investment. Do you know what? Bootstrapping it’s much easier than you think. My article 5 Ways to Bootstrap Your Small Business breaks down 5 areas in which you can start a business on very little investment.

Networking : Attending networking events helps to gain visibility and grow your business (Sixth Sense PR).   Networking provides you with the opportunity to become your vision and brand (The Athena Network Dorset ) Networking groups vary so much from how often they meet, the structure of the session and how much they cost to attend, “some of this decision making, may be instinctual. How do you feel when you walk into the room – are people welcoming and friendly? Are there other like-minded people in attendance? Are they your potential “tribe”?” (The Athena Network Dorset) In order to build your support network.tribe you need to get out there and try out a variety of networking groups until you find one that matches your needs. Networking is one of the nest ways in which to bootstrap your business as it’s more “who you know” that what you know and first generation connections will always recommend you to others. 

Email Lists : Growing an email list is another under utilised and underestimated form of selling to potential customers. Having customers emails enables you to send out offers and previews, discount codes specific and just for them. You’d be able to track how successful your offers/codes are by keeping them specific to just your email list. Always end an email/newsletter with a call to action clearly directing potential customers. Amanda from Spiderworking.com has a great podcast (or written version if your perfer) How To Use Lead Incentives to Build a Better Audience

Working from home : If you’re looking to start your first business, the good news is that you’ll almost certainly be able to start the majority of your business operations based at home. That means that there’s no renting an office or warehouse, or any commute to get there, so you’ll save money on both property and travel costs. And if you’re currently at home taking care of young children you may also be able to fit in your business around those duties – so you won’t necessarily need to pay for extra childcare while you run your venture. Work For Mums 5 Tips For Starting a Business on a Budget 

Be Creative with What You Have : Paula from Marketing Vision Consultancy shares here tips on bootstrapping your small business including shopping around for the best deals and seeking supplier recommendations if possible to avoid any costly mistakes. 

Create a Marketing Plan : Having a water tight marketing plan will stop you spending unnecessary cash on a whim and give you something to refer back to a work from each month. How to Create a Small Business Marketing Plan in 5 Steps | Refresh Marketing

The Reluctant Speaker has this excellent podcast with Spiderworking.com on how Amanda developed her content marketing business on very little working cash. 

If you have any top tips regarding Bootstrapping for Small Business do share them in the comments below.  Next month’s theme is using Instagram for Small Business. Please do tweet your blog post links to @CharlieMoos.

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About Joanne Dewberry

Joanne is a 30 something coffee lover living in rural Dorset with her long suffering partner and three children Charlie (2007), Megan (2008) and Olive (2011). Joanne is owner, designer and creator at Charlie Moo's specialising in handmade fabric party bags. She also writes a small business blog, is a Sage Business Expert and author of Crafting a Successful Small Business. In 2010 Joanne was named Dorset Business Mother of the Year and has numerous accolades and awards to her name. In her spare time she likes to eat and watch crime dramas sometimes at the same time!

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