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  • Business Ownership in Hickory Nut Gorge: Overcoming the Fear of the Unknown

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    October 26, 2022

    A new business can be both exciting and scary. You have a great idea, but you also have a million questions. Maybe even enough to make you wonder whether it's worth taking the leap. Honestly, there's no better time to start a small business. It's true that risks accompany any venture, but don't let the fear of the unknown stop you from achieving your dreams. Read on for tips from the Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge on how to overcome the fear that comes with starting a new business.

    Initial Costs

    The first step in starting a new business is to determine your startup costs. This includes everything from the costs of goods or services to the cost of renting office space or hiring staff. To get an accurate estimate of your startup costs, it's important to consult with experts in your industry. You can also use online resources, such as the Small Business Administration's startup cost calculator.

    Everyone Needs a Business Plan

    A business plan is a critical component of any new business. This document outlines your business goals, strategies, and how you plan to achieve them. Your business plan should also include a financial projection for your first year of operation. If you're not sure where to start, there are plenty of resources available online that offer templates and more comprehensive information on what a business plan entails.

    You'll Need a Business Designation

    Choosing the right business structure is an important decision for any new business owner. The most common structures are sole proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), and corporations. The structure you choose will determine things like how much money you'll need to raise, how you'll be taxed, and what legal responsibilities you'll have. Your type of business will help you determine your designation, but if you're still unsure, connect with a formation service or an attorney.

    Develop a Marketing Plan

    Once you've ironed out the legalities, it's time to craft a marketing strategy that will help you reach your target market. There are many different ways to market a product or service, so it's important to find the approach that makes the most sense for your business. Traditional methods like print ads and television commercials can be costly, but there are also many cost-effective options available, such as social media marketing and content marketing.


    It may be best to work with a freelance marketing specialist to get you started. They will know how best to construct your marketing strategy to increase exposure. But be aware that you may receive - and be expected to send - PDFs as your primary communication method. You can automatically convert your doc to PDF using a free online tool. Just drop in the file and save the newly reformatted version to send to your freelancer.

    Seek Out a Mentor

    Starting a new business isn't for the faint of heart, so it's important to have someone in your corner who can offer advice and guidance when needed. This is where mentors come in. A mentor is an experienced individual who can provide advice and support as you navigate the early stages of starting your own business. There are several ways to find mentors, including online directories like SCORE or MentorCruise.    

    Outline Your Goals

    Having attainable goals is essential for any new business owner. These goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART). For example, instead of setting a goal of “increasing sales," try setting a goal of “increasing sales by 10% within six months." Keep in mind that goal-setting is an ongoing process; as your business grows and changes, so too will your goals.    

    Start Networking

    Networking is an important part of any business's success—but it can be especially helpful for new business owners looking to build relationships and gain industry knowledge. Industry association meetings and trade shows are great places to start networking. You can also join online forums and connect with other professionals on social media platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter. Be sure to also join your local chamber of commerce.

    Plan, Network, and Grow

    Starting a new business can be both exciting and intimidating—but it doesn't have to be scary! By researching the intricacies ahead of time, you can overcome the fear that comes with starting a new business. Invest what you need to in order to give your business a healthy start, but also take advantage of free online tools when you find them. With some planning and networking, your business will be up, running, and growing in no time!


    If you’re ready to grow your business with the help of great local resources and partnerships, join the Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge.