- Planning Your Business: Research, Goals, and Business Plans
This video emphasizes the need to plan in order to succeed, with advice from veteran entrepreneurs on clarifying goals, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of a potential enterprise, and establishing a realistic pathway to prosperity.
Challenging the viewer to take a serious look at his or her own ability to take risks, manage an organization, and go toe-to-toe with competitors, the program offers insight into:
- market exploration
- determining a viable market niche
- gauging the level of need for a product or service
- learning about ones customer base
- deciding on the most appropriate business structure.
Writing a detailed and comprehensive business plan is also a major topic.
- Starting Your Business: Financing, Branding, and Regulations
Its one thing to imagine being an entrepreneur and quite another to take the first steps in creating a real business.
This video encourages people who have carefully studied the market for a product or service, have written a solid business plan, and have decided to proceed to the next level.
- typical ways of obtaining financing (emphasizing conventional banking sources like operating loans, term loans, and SBA loans)
- the crucial steps of fulfilling federal, state, and local paperwork requirements
- the acquisition of equipment and other assets
- the potential need for a physical store or office space
- guidance on crafting an enduring and evocative company name
Although it offers a wealth of advice from experienced businesspeople, the program also illustrates the benefits of finding a flesh-and-blood mentor to help navigate the many hurdles of starting a business.
- Finding Your Customers: Marketing and Advertising Your Business
Building a loyal customer base is vital to the success of any new business – but competing for attention in a world bombarded with advertising may be a young companys most daunting challenge.
Packed with advice from experienced entrepreneurs, this video highlights smart ways to generate recognition for a start-up business and drive traffic to it. Viewers learn the necessity of researching a competitors advertising tactics, developing a marketing plan, and testing various promotional strategies.
- the need for targeted messaging that connects with the customer base
- effective website building and development
- networking through involvement in the community
- the idea of business referral or liaising with other firms that arent direct competitors
- smaller-scale advertising based on repetition as an alternative to more splashy and expensive methods
- Managing Your Business: Prices, Finances, and Staffing
From price tags to paychecks, from tracking sales to filing taxes, from opening in the morning to locking up at night, the on-the-ground challenges of running a business never end. This video sheds light on them with expert commentary and helpful explorations of numerous management issues.
- obtaining proper insurance
- determining the best market prices for goods and services
- finding the right software and record-keeping systems for sales, billing, expenses, and taxes
- making sure that an array of government and bureaucratic requirements are fulfilled, from an Employer Identification Number to Employee Eligibility Verification forms to the required notices posted on company premises
The program also features extensive discussions of hiring, training, motivating, and disciplining employees.
- Looking Ahead: Exiting Your Business
It might seem contradictory, but decisions about how to end a company are just as important as the dreams that give birth to it. There may even be reasons that make a pre-planned exit strategy mandatory, such as the specific needs of investors.
This video explores various end-game scenarios for business owners, helping to clarify long-term goals for anyone on the verge of creating a company while detailing the possibilities and challenges that each type of conclusion involves.
Viewers are introduced to:
- the pros and cons of being bought out in installments
- selling a company outright to a friendly party or a competitor
- merging with another firm, including the option of staying on in some capacity
- going the IPO route, an expensive and rarely pursued option but one worth discussing
- liquidation, with its need for proper record-keeping, government paperwork, and asset sell-offs or storage
In all cases, the focus is on walking away with the best possible outcome.