Do you remember when Mom would tell you to eat your peas if you wanted to grow UP big and strong? Now that you are grown up and have a great idea for a product or service, do you think Mom’s advice can still help? It can! If you are like many would-be entrepreneurs, the problem you’re running into with your great idea is not knowing how to get it off the ground. This problem does not have to stop you from getting your idea up and running, though, as long as you remember to eat these three P’s: Plan, Prepare, Proceed.
In this P, you’ll start by examining your idea very closely, and run it by a few friends or family members. Is it really something that you can do? After all, the best idea in the world for a new type of rocket can’t really be executed by a veterinarian with no background in aerospace engineering, ya know? Make sure the people who know you best have at least some confidence in your ability to take your idea from the drawing board to the production line.
Next, start planning what you will need to make your idea happen. This can be as simple as thinking about where you’ll offer your service or as complicated as finding production facilities that might be willing to take on the manufacturing process of your product.
Once you’ve planned your path from idea to launch, it’s time to prepare to launch your idea. You should take this time to finalize the prototype of your product, or work out as many of the kinks in your service as you can. Get your product or service in the hands of “beta testers,” people who can try out what you plan on offering and give you real feedback on how everything works out.
Use this time to gather the startup funds that you need to launch into high gear, and also start the process of enlisting help, either paid employees or “voluntold” family members who will aid you in your new business venture. You should also prepare yourself for the world of the business owner by familiarizing yourself with tax laws and other business laws.
Prepare your marketing materials, and be ready to send out brochures and flyers advertising your product or service. Set up a web page and start signing up for the various social media outlets that you’ll use as part of your marketing campaign.
Once you’ve planned and prepared, it’s time to proceed! You’ve got everything in place, so now it’s time to kick it into high gear and open for business. Make sure you follow through on all of your marketing plans, as well as your production plans (for a product). This is the most exciting time for a new business venture, the actual launch! The Proceed phase is where you go from startup to startUP, so make the most of it.
Ready? Three simple steps, three P’s, and you go from idea to launch.