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Don’t put the cart before the horse when business planning

As shown by previous blog posts, every now and again I like to visit the business forum pages and see what queries entrepreneurs are posing to the community there.

 

Some of the most interesting ones are about marketing, as they nearly always give excellent advice.

 

This is the case with one story I’ve been following.

 

It’s a software firm offering bespoke accounting software. By the sounds of it, they build the software you need from the ground up based on exactly what you need from it.

 

Apparently this normally costs thousands as a one-off payment, but this firm allow clients to subscribe for a more reasonable fee.

 

The reason they’re posting on the forum is because even though they already have a couple of clients signed up, they have numerous visitors to their website who aren’t translating into customers.

 

All the responses from the community about why this may be so make a lot of sense.

 

  • Work out who needs your product, and who their influencers are.
  • Develop a unique selling point; what makes your software different?
  • As usual, sell the benefits not the features. The seller is very proud of their work and wants to show what it can do, but not seeing things from a customer’s point of view.
  • On the website, say what the product is right away to eliminate confusion.
  • Explain what the different options for a customer needing accounting software would be – and how choosing your option is best.

 

To be fair, this advice could be taken on by almost any entrepreneur or start up.

 

At least three of the points should come under your Business Plan, which you should create right at the beginning of your venture.

 

So even if you have a great product, you shouldn’t put the cart before the horse and hope it finds its target market all by itself.

 

But you will need more information that those five points.

 

Find out what they are here:

 

https://www.madenotborn.com/starting-your-own-business/

 

David

Sheer genius? Ed knows his target market

According to The Official Chart update, all 16 tracks from Ed Sheeran’s new album Divide (÷) have charted in the UK Top 40.

 

Nine of the Top 10 songs are by Sheeran. Crazy days.

 

One of them, Galway Girl, is a strange novelty effort with half-rapped lyrics that namecheck Dublin’s Grafton Street with an Irish fiddle backing track last heard on B*Witched’s C’est la Vie.

 

According to a recent interview with the Guardian, Sheeran said his record label weren’t keen on it being included on the album.

 

“They were really, really against Galway Girl, because apparently folk music isn’t cool. But there’s 400 million people in the world that say they’re Irish, even if they’re not Irish.

 

“You meet them in America all the time: ‘I’m a quarter Irish and I’m from Donegal.’ And those type of people are going to love it.”

 

Turns out he was right and they were wrong, as it’s currently at number 3 in the UK and already gone to number 1 in Ireland.

 

You could argue it’s a classic case of knowing your target market, and one that could translate to business.

 

Sheeran’s market research will stem from constant gigging, using social media, and experience of what works in the world of pop.

 

He even identifies that there’s been a “huge gap in the market” for that kind of thing since The Corrs, and actively tried to plug it.

 

For your business, it’s going to be slightly different – but the fundamentals are the same.

 

As Sheeran shows, it pays to know your audience.

 

Find out how to research your own target market right here:

 

https://www.madenotborn.com/starting-your-own-business/

 

David