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Small Business Startup Checklist

Small Business Startup Checklist
Small Business Startup Checklist Establishment of a small business and successfully running it is definitely by no means a small achievement. It is a commendable achievement as entrepreneurs are the backbones of a country’s economy and its growth. Proper planning and understanding the significance of critical factors and determinants affecting a small business paves way for the smooth functioning of your enterprise. What are the prerequisites for running a small business? Any plan or idea to be transformed into a product or a service needs to be categorically put into experimentation and subject to inquiries. Prepare a detailed project report With the help of an external expert consultant get it appraised Let the product be innovative which has hitherto not hit the market, for instance flying cars Plan your geographical area of operations Go for a detailed market survey through questionnaires and giving out free samples Try to gauge the pulse of your target customers Launch your product at the right time Plan your marketing strategy regarding price and promotions Fix up proper capitalization that would meet your financial requirements. Definitely you have to bring in initial working capital of your own and don’t rely solely on bankers for the entire funding. Asset management, fixed capital and working capital management must be absolutely preplanned. Man power requirements -Right person for the right job and the appropriate number of persons needed to complete a job has to be planned. Their recruitment, selection, training and development forms part of the package. Location and Layout Most important criterion is the location and layout of your manufacturing facility. It should facilitate easy movement of materials to bring the product out to the market in the shortest possible time. Avoid bottlenecks or try to resolve them for smooth production. As we all know technology feeds on itself and more the delay, more competitors and better products throng the market. Keep in mind the end product should always reach the buyer or the consumer at the right time. Plan your re order level, delivery schedule and lead times in accordance with the orders in hand. Picture Courtesy : Yourcityenterprise.com Production Inputs Smooth supply of production inputs, uninterrupted supply of power, copious water supply, the nature of the soil( if your product is agro based), proximity to the market and transportation facilities have to be given due importance. Your product has to be compliant in such a way that it should not pollute the environment. So a proper waste disposal management system should be designed right at the start of your operations. Book-Keeping Proper book keeping and maintaining your accounts will please the tax authorities by which you create goodwill for your company and also keep your credit management under controllable limits. Any product centered around the consumer will be a hit and that is “marketing”. If you plan your success formula from your product that is “selling” that might not always be successful. Your distribution channels should be continuous with unbroken links and strong. The kind of self confidence that you exuberate makes you a reliable person and in the long run you become iconic. Technology Updates Businessmen have trained the customers to expect something new everyday, because such is the power of technology and the competitor force. So it is better to keep yourself updated with the latest technology available in the market. Take your product to your customers in a convincing manner by which it proves to be a win-win situation for both sides; profit making and customer satisfaction for the entrepreneur and buying products the money’s worth and the real benefits of the product for the...
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Product Modification

Product Modification
Product Modification – Solid Strategy to Capture Untouched Market Segments There is a pressing need for business firms to bring about changes in the physical attributes of their existing products periodically, to retain the customer base as well as to tide over the competition in the market. A number of factors may prompt the manufacturer to modify his product. To make best use of the technological advancement for the benefit of the firm Modification in lieu of competition To regenerate a product suffering from sales decline Product Attributes: What could be modified; it may be anything, the color, size, material, functional features, styling and engineering, etc., or a combination of these could be considered for modification. Ultimately these modifications should result in products emerging with better quality, features and styling. Consumer goods are offered with a wide range and variety to appease the different taste of the consumers as well as to stand unique in the market; Bathing soaps, talcum powders and cosmetics to name a few. Even producers, who are involved in core industries like textiles and garments, come out with a range of products to cater to the specific requirements of the customers. Product modification is different from product specialization that applies to high end customers whose specifications are based on the end use of the product and the target market. For example, mélange yarn is a specialized product used for producing better color shades for knitted fabrics (hosiery sector). Product modification concentrates more on increasing the appeal of the product by presenting it with attractive and improved attributes like, better packing and features. Strategy to Improve Quality: The strategy of quality improvement aims at increasing the functional performance of the product- its durability, reliability, speed, taste, etc. The added advantages would be versatility, safety and convenience. The benefits of feature improvement includes, Builds company’s image Can aid in winning over the target market Gives free publicity for the firm Infuses enthusiasm in the internal environment of a firm, amongst the sales force and distributors Style Improvement: Style improvement aims at improving the aesthetic appeal of the product. Why do you think automobile manufacturers are in the process of introducing new models of cars every so often? It is a strategy that amounts to style competition rather than quality or feature competition. This kind of style modification has to be done after extensive market research to gauge the preference of the people in the target market and to avoid colossal monetary loss if in case there is a negative feedback from the market. Manufacturers of house hold products can always take the risk of going for small modifications in terms of texture and style as new features can be adapted quickly, dropped quickly and often made optional at the least expense. A firm has to mix and match its product modification strategies to maintain its competitive position and to keep itself abreast of the latest developments in the market...
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Are You Customer Centric or Product Centric

Are You Customer Centric or Product Centric
Customer Centric or Product Centric Customer centric: refers to the orientation of a company to the needs and behaviors of its customers. Product centric: refers to the orientation of a company towards manufacturing and improving the product line. All products that enter the market are not given the kind of welcome which only certain products are able to enjoy. Why is that only few products are top notch and others average performers? The answer is very simple, you need to be customer centric rather focusing on improving your product and its range. What is the fun in making products that go bland over a period of time? Creating an appealing product does not suffice the requirements of the consumers. Understanding the consumer, his needs and preferences makes you a good marketer. “What people want to buy and what you want people to buy are entirely two different entities.” Customer Wanton and Preferences Marketing is a concept that talks about creating a favorable environment or identifying a niche where you can sell your products comfortably or where the products can sell themselves provided the focus is on the target customer. What companies do now in the name of marketing is nothing but product promotion that exhausts huge chunk of money from the management’s treasury. Business schools have a great role to play in idealizing these concepts for the better understanding of management graduates, make them deliver the right choice of action in real time environment. Marketing starts right from developing a prospective business idea into a concrete business plan followed by branding and promotions. But the product base has to be built upon customer wanton and preferences. Indigenous Products The soft drink “Bovonto” is very popular and a preferred drink in south of Tamilnadu, India and the manufacturers have their plants at various places in Tamilnadu. Although not a big name in the international market, it is a direct competitor for Coke and Pepsi in the southern regions of Tamilnadu. The grape vine is that the product is a perfect “market fit”. To our amusement and amazement the product has communicated well with the market place through taste and quality. Here is the unerring message, ‘Let the product speak for itself’. Indigenous products always gain instant recognition as they connect well with the local people emotionally. If people of each and every country vows only to buy indigenous products, many MNC’s would be out of business and filing for bankruptcy. Such is the power of the market and people who are the owners of the market. What is that ‘X’ factor that makes your product different and unique Let’s look at it from another perspective. Incidentally you happen to develop a great product and you want to market the product. This situation calls for patenting the product and again it can be made market centric by finding the right market segment for the product and promoting it in such a way that the product content appeals to the market. Tell the masses how your product can solve specific problems through its unique content. What is that ‘X’ factor that makes your product different and unique as well is what you have to communicate to the people whom you are targeting. Facebook has revolutionized the internet marketplace by offering simple and user friendly interface and a sophisticated niche for each and every individual who wants to make his/ her presence felt. A good business plan is one which incorporates the best of ideas from all spheres of the company, as marketing is not a separate entity and promotions call for huge investments. Many companies fail to understand the basis of market success which...
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