Starting a new business is an expense on many levels. In some cases people are not only trying to produce a brand new income stream from scratch, but they also have to devote themselves full time to doing it, which means they also have to give up a steady income stream in the process. But it doesn’t have to cost a fortune to build a new business. Here are 4 ways to build a business on a budget.
Before you leave your full-time job, you can start building up a clientele list by freelancing on the side. Be careful, however, that you are not taking business away from the company you work for full time. If you are planning on starting a new business in the same industry, this could cause you problems down the road.
If, however, your full-time job has nothing to do with the industry you plan on starting a business in, you should not only be in the clear but may even be able to get some clients from the people you come into contact with in your full time job. Eventually, the goal is to be able to get enough freelance work that you can diminish your “stable job” hours to part time before eventually being able to go into full-time business for yourself.
2. Build up equity
Some businesses require a great deal of equipment, while others need more startup capital. Whichever you need, you can start saving before you open your own business and start buying any equipment you need. There are many ways to jump start this process as well.
If you need start up capital, there are a great number of ways to raise it besides going to the bank for a business loan. You can approach friends, family and relatives to invest in your business for a percentage of ownership or start a crowd funding campaign, or even sell some of your own personal belongings. You can even have friends and family donate items for a large garage sale or if you own your own car there are even car title loans available.
3. Barter for services
You don’t always have to pay for everything you need – bartering is a great way to get what you need and save some money in the process. If you are a tattoo artist, you might barter with a web designer and offer a tattoo for a website or barter with a graphic artist for a logo or business cards. If you are a chef or baker, you can exchange food for services, or if you are a bookkeeper or accountant, you may even be able to exchange your services for office space or for needed equipment.
4. Use social media
There is possibly no more powerful advertising tool than social media and the best part of all is, it’s free! Social media for business offers a number of targeted ad programs that will reach exactly your target audience. Whether you have a web based business and can work for clients all over the world, or if you are a local business that needs local clientele, you can easily set up and design ad campaigns that will target an exact segment of users for as little as $50. If you don’t know anyone you can barter with for graphic design services or other media, you can use a web service like Fiverr to get just what you need.