Business

Blog Series: How to start, launch and scale a Small Business (Part 3)

7 Mins read
Small Business Blog Series

Welcome to the third installment of our blog series on how to start, launch, and scale a small business. In the previous two blogs, we delved into the essential prerequisites for embarking on your entrepreneurial journey and the crucial steps involved in successfully launching your business.

As you take your first steps as a small business owner, it’s time to shift your focus to the tools and strategies necessary to effectively manage various functions within your organization, from employee management to marketing.

Although you have already taken significant strides toward establishing your business, it’s important to remember that this is just the beginning. To position your business for sustainable growth, you must ensure the successful execution of crucial business functions, which we will explore further in this blog. So, let’s dive in and equip ourselves with the knowledge and resources to propel your small business forward.

But before that, if you’ve not yet read the previous two blogs from the series, here’re the links:

Growing your small business – Important tools and strategies

1. Employee Management

As a small business owner, employee management can be challenging. Especially, if you do not have the right tools and resources to help manage it successfully.

As part of employee management, you’ll need to ensure that your employees are happy, engaged, and productive.

Below we are sharing a few people management tips as well as tools to help you foster a positive work environment:

1.1 Employee management tips and tools

1. Set clear goals and expectations: Setting clear goals and working on them together is crucial for the success of your small business. Clear goals and expectations ensure that your employees are aware of what is expected of them. This further helps aligning their efforts with the company’s overall objectives and also creates a sense of purpose and direction.

2. Hire the right people: When hiring new employees, ensure that they have the necessary skills, experience, and qualifications for the job. Also, consider their personality, attitude, and cultural fit within the organization.

3. Empower them with the right tools: Give your employees the right tools, resources, and autonomy they need to do their jobs effectively. This includes the right tools to communicate, collaborate, work remotely, manage and store documents, discuss and brainstorm, project management, and more.

Take a look at some of the top employee communication and productivity enhancer tools:

  • Microsoft 365: Microsoft 365 productivity suite by Microsoft includes applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Teams. With Microsoft Teams, your employees can communicate in real time, share files, and collaborate on projects. This can help improve productivity and efficiency and ensure that everyone is on the same page.
Microsoft 365

Source: Microsoft 365

It is important to note here that Microsoft 365 is a comprehensive suite. You get every tool you need to ensure that your team is able to work seamlessly – from storage and email to calls and chat.

  • Google Workspace: Another great workspace collaboration tool for small businesses is Google Workspace. This suite of tools includes Gmail, Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, as well as Google Drive for storing and sharing files. With Google Meet, you can also hold video meetings and collaborate in real time with your team. Just like Microsoft 365, Google Workspace is a complete solution.
Google Workspace

Source: Google Workspace

  • Zoho Workplace: Zoho Workplace is a cloud-based collaboration platform designed for businesses of all sizes. It includes a suite of productivity tools, such as email, document management, project management, and more. With Zoho Workplace, your teams can communicate and collaborate seamlessly in real time, from anywhere and on any device.
Zoho

Source: Zoho

  • Asana: Asana is a web and mobile-based project management software that helps teams to manage tasks and workflows more efficiently. It provides a platform for team members to collaborate, communicate, and organize tasks in a centralized location. Asana offers features such as task assignment, deadline tracking, project calendars, and real-time updates, making it easier for teams to stay on track and meet their goals.
Asana

Source: Asana

  • Dropbox: Dropbox is a cloud-based file hosting and sharing platform that enables users to store and share files with others, from anywhere and on any device. It offers features such as file syncing, backup, and collaboration, making it a versatile solution for individuals and businesses alike.
Dropbox

Source: Dropbox

  • Zoom: Zoom is a cloud-based video conferencing platform that allows users to conduct meetings, webinars, and virtual events from anywhere and on any device. It offers a range of features such as screen sharing, virtual backgrounds, recording, and real-time chat, making it an ideal solution for remote teams, educators, and businesses of all sizes.
Zoom

Source: Zoom

4. Provide feedback and recognition: Regularly provide feedback to your employees on their performance, both positive and constructive. Also, recognize and reward good work, as it helps to boost employee morale and motivation.

5. Lead by example: As a small business owner, you should lead by example by demonstrating the behaviours and values you want your employees to embody. This includes being punctual, respectful, and transparent in your communication.

6. Create a positive work environment: Foster a positive work environment that values teamwork, collaboration, and respect. Encourage employees to take breaks, prioritize work-life balance, and engage in social activities that build camaraderie and support.

1.2 Human Resources Tools for SMBs

When talking about employee management, we cannot overlook the role of human resources executives who play an active role in employee management. They are responsible for developing and implementing policies and procedures related to recruitment, selection, training, compensation, benefits, performance evaluation, and employee relations.

They work closely with managers and supervisors to ensure that the organization’s staffing needs are met and that employees are treated fairly and equitably.

Many small businesses might choose to outsource the HR process due to a lack of resources and time. If you don’t want to outsource it, you can also invest in popular HR Management tools that can assist you in payroll management, attendance, recruiting, onboarding, time tracking, and more. Here’s a quick list to help you get started:

  • Bamboo HR: A cloud-based HR software that helps small businesses manage employee data, benefits, time off requests, and more.
  • Zenefits – An all-in-one HR platform that includes payroll, benefits administration, time and attendance tracking, and more.
  • Gusto – A payroll and benefits platform that helps small businesses manage payroll, compliance, and HR tasks all in one place.
  • Recruitee – An applicant tracking system (ATS) that helps small businesses manage their recruitment process, from posting job ads to onboarding new hires.
  • Slack – A communication platform that can be used for internal HR communication, such as employee announcements and team collaboration.
  • Zoho People – Zoho People is a cloud-based HR management software with modules for managing employee data, attendance, leave management, performance evaluations, and more.

2. Marketing Management

Marketing is a crucial aspect of any small business. It’s important to get your name out there and attract customers to your products or services. Still, 61% of marketers say their biggest challenges are generating traffic and leads.

Let’s look at the some of key marketing strategies for small businesses:

1) Know your audience

Hands down – this is the most basic marketing tip you will ever need!

When you start your small business, it is important to first know who your target audience is. By doing this, you can determine an ideal marketing strategy that focuses on your target customer. Check out these tips to target your audience effectively.

  • Define your target market
  • Define your niche
  • Research about the competition
  • Create a buyer persona
  • Segment the audience

2) Leverage social media

With billions of users on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, social media provides a unique opportunity for small businesses to reach and engage with their target audience. Social media was one of the top marketing channels in 2022 as per a HubSpot study.

By creating and sharing valuable content, responding to customer inquiries, and building relationships with followers, you can increase your brand awareness, drive traffic to your business website, and ultimately, boost sales.

3) Use cold email marketing

Cold email marketing is a great tactic for small businesses to generate leads. They are highly cost effective when compared to other marketing channels like advertising or direct mail. Through cold email marketing, you can reach a wider audience and also personalize the emails for a greater impact. You can measure the result of your email marketing through any email marketing analytics tool.

4) Go for Influencer Marketing

Though a bit expensive, influencer marketing is great if you want to promote your brand quicker. It involves partnering with influencers (mostly celebrities, bloggers, or social media personalities) and asking them to promote your brand.

Influencer marketing can take many forms, such as sponsored posts, product reviews, or social media takeovers, and can be executed on a range of platforms, including Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok. To be successful, influencer marketing requires careful planning, clear objectives, and effective measurement and analysis of results.

5) Content Marketing

Content marketing is another digital marketing strategy that you can use to generate leads. It is also cost-effective as compared to other paid marketing strategies.

Content marketing can take many forms, such as blog posts, videos, social media posts, whitepapers, podcasts, and infographics. The key to successful content marketing is to create content that resonates with the target audience and addresses their pain points or interests.

Now, as a small business owner, you might not be able to implement all these marketing strategies alone. But thankfully, today you have access to a number of small business marketing tools that can help you automate most of the tasks and run effective marketing campaigns without many resources.

We are quickly listing some of the marketing tools you can consider for managing your small business:

  • HubSpot: for all-in-one marketing, sales, and customer service automation.
  • Google Analytics – for tracking website traffic and user behaviour
  • Mailchimp – for email marketing campaigns and automation
  • Hootsuite – for social media management and scheduling
  • SEMrush – for SEO and keyword research
  • Canva – for creating professional-looking graphics and designs
  • Trello – for project management and collaboration
  • Hotjar – for analyzing user behavior on your website
  • Colorcinch – one of the best photo editor and cartoonizer tools
  • Ahrefs – for backlink analysis and competitive research
  • Zapier – for automating workflows and connecting different apps

Winding-up

In this blog, we explored the tools and strategies required to perform vital functions within your small business, ranging from employee management to marketing. By adopting these practices, you can streamline operations, enhance productivity, and create a solid foundation for growth.

However, it’s important to note that there are other key functions, such as financial management and legal considerations, that are integral to the long-term success of your business.

We will delve into these critical areas in the final installment of our series.

However, if you want to access the full resource today, you can download our ‘Small Business Guide’ now.

Download it here.

28 posts

About author
Priya an ambivert by nature, believes in giving shape to her ideas through her write ups. She is an intellectual person who loves exploring and researching about new things. In her free times she loves reading novels along with some soft music.
Articles
Related posts
BusinessManagementMarketing

LeadSquared vs Zoho - Which is the best CRM for small businesses?

4 Mins read
Did you know, the global customer relationship management (CRM) software market is forecast to grow to USD 57 billion in 2025*? This…
BusinessSecurity Tips

Avast Business vs Bitdefender GravityZone - Which antivirus is better?

3 Mins read
According to Security Magazine, there are over 2,200 cyberattacks every day, which is nearly one every 39 seconds. As our digital world…
BusinessManagement

Zoho Mail - Preferred Business Email for Organizations

4 Mins read
Ever found yourself imagining the days when getting a message across resembled sending messages on smoke signals? Life before emails was like…