If you are planning on launching your very own startup, it’s an exciting time for you. During the planning stage of your setting up your own business, you’ll identify with a raft of mixed emotions that seem to plague you every day including fear, excitement, and relief. The rollercoaster of ups and downs will continue too as you let go of your employee status, excellent promotion prospects, job security and the office banter. Saying goodbye to the regular wage will be your most courageous and worrying prospect, especially if you’ve got regular bills to pay.
However, transforming your business idea into reality i.e. commericalising it and thus growing a revenue stream will keep you focused on the main tasks at hand. Many people have visions of becoming an entrepreneur but very few actually take the bold step to give it a go. It’s not just the business plan that halts progress, it’s also working out how to fund the startup. Who can you turn to for the investment? Take a look at this guide to help you secure funding as and when you need it for your startup.
The most traditional method for business funding is to pay a visit to your bank manager. Suited and booted, you should know your figures, sums and business vision inside out, ready to seduce the bank manager and convince him to part with his cash. When you enter the bank, you should have your comprehensive business plan in your hand, ready for it to be heavily scrutinized. A bank needs to know that you are a responsible borrower and that you have mitigated risk within your plan.
Ensure that you have crunched your numbers and that you know your financial forecasting for at least the next two years. Make sure that you are passionate about your pitch. Inject a little personality into your words and show off your enthusiasm for your product or service. Demonstrate your flair and business acumen and create an excellent impression. On occasion, banks will deny your loan application and if this happens to you, don’t feel like your business plans are shattered. You simply need to take another approach.
If you want to go down another funding route, a business angel could be the ideal path to follow. These individuals are experts in their fields and love investing their own cash into small enterprises. They want to help upcoming entrepreneurs make their mark in their chosen sectors. If you can secure funding from a business angel, you will have an idea that is validated. They will be investing in you as much as your business plan. Rather than just a monetary investment, business angels will be on hand to give advice, help you network, and be a listening ear if you have any startup problems.
If you are looking for a more flexible and postmodern way to secure funding, it might be worth looking into crowdfunding. By pitching your product or service online, you can attract a global market who might be keen to stake a claim in your business. You can offer discounts, shares or a return to attract investment from the amateur armchair investor. While each investments might be small, if you can secure hundreds if not thousands of tiny investments, this can soon add up to a larger pot of funding. Expect the interest rate to be more than a traditional business loan secured from a top tier lender like a bank.
If you are keen to take your first steps into the world of entrepreneurship, follow this guide to help secure funding for your startup.