14 Dec 4 tips before starting a business in the Okanagan
Have you tried to start a business in the Okanagan? Maybe youâ€™re toying with the idea of being your own boss, or are in the midst of opening your own store. If so, then you will want to pay close attention to these 4 tips for Okanagan startups.
#1. why & what
The most important part of your business is the service or product youâ€™re going to provide. New business owners should think of how they can separate their product from the next guy. Why is your product better than the current industry standard? What sets you apart from already established local brands? You should establish your unique idea, and figure out who & why people living in the Okanagan will choose your product over your competitor. ie. Lets say you want to open a local coffee shop, why is someone going to choose you over a brand like Starbucks? Well, someone might choose your cafe over Starbucks because of where you source your beans, the fact that youâ€™re locally engaged, and perhaps you establish more of a personal connection with you customers through loyalty programs & personal touch points. Local engagement is HUGE in the Okanagan with word of mouth being such a large factor to success.
So, youâ€™ve separated yourself from your competitors, youâ€™re certain you can provide a better product, but whom are you selling to? The next step in starting a new business is identifying your target market. You need to be showing what you do differently from your competitors to the people who matter. If youâ€™re a coffee shop marketing your coffee as a better product than your competitor to someone who doesnâ€™t drink coffee, where does that get you? Identify who your target market is, and cater your brands â€œpitchâ€ to those individuals through targeted lists. This will also help you identify if there is a market for your product in the Okanagan.
#3. local engagement
Engagement is critical for businesses wanting to establish themselves locally. Successful business owners in the Okanagan have two things in common when it comes to generating engagement: they are locally involved in the community, and they are well connected with other businesses around the Okanagan. Why do they all have this in common? Because a large part of their business comes from local referrals. When a potential customer hears something positive about your business from someone other than an employee, it instills more trust in your brand. This also reiterates the need for customer service, and further highlights how a negative experience can tarnish your brand.Â
#4 social media & online presence
Insights West polled 1,049 Canadian adults in March of this year finding that 71% of respondents used Facebook, and 54% of those saying they used Facebook on a daily basis. This figure alone should reiterate the importance of your social media presence. If roughly 38% of Canadians are using Facebook daily, there is a huge opportunity for you to make touch points with potential customers and increase engagement of your brand.Â Insights West also found 30% of Canadians interact with companies online by visiting their website. If you don’t have a solid website, youâ€™re missing out on the bulk of your online engagement for your business.
Hopefully the above 4 tips have given you some information to chew on. Weâ€™d love to start a conversation, tweet us @Infuse_ITÂ or connect with us on Facebook and let us know what youâ€™d like to see us write about next!
Written by Alexander Linke