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KATIE CONROY

Katie Conroy is the creator of www.AdviceMine.com. She particularly enjoys writing about lifestyle topics and created the website to share advice she has learned through experience, education, and research.

Sustainable Business Practices Are the Future — Are You Ready? 

Photo Credit: Edmond Dantès via Pexels 

Written By: Katie Conroy.

Sustainable Business Practices Are the Future — Are You Ready? 

Today, major corporations around the world are striving to become more sustainable in their business practices. This is due to market demand; consumers these days are becoming increasingly aware of the environmental and social impacts of production, and are voting for sustainability with their dollars. According to a recent Nielsen survey, sales of sustainable products have been performing well above average. 

If you’re planning to start your own business, you should be aware of how sustainable business practices can reduce environmental impact while at the same time promoting healthy, thriving communities. Today, Cymru Marketing presents a guide to help you lay the groundwork for your sustainable business. 

Sustainability 101 

The National Geographic Society defines sustainability as “the practice of using natural resources responsibly, so they can support both present and future generations.” This is not a new concept; for centuries, leaders of the Iroquois Nation considered the impact of their decisions on their great-great-great-great grandchildren (which is the origin of the term “seventh generation”). The challenge for business in the 21st century is figuring out how to be “green” while at the same time remaining profitable. This involves numerous considerations, such as: 

  • The sourcing of materials  
  • Delivery of goods and/or services  
  • Ecological footprint 
  • Economic impact
  •  Fair business practices 
  • The local environment 

Finding Sustainable Opportunities 

When looking for a niche, take into account the local environment and culture. Keep in mind that a business idea that may be sustainable in one place won’t be in another. While researching your idea, consider consumer demand and how to address it sustainably. It’s also worth looking into the walking score of a given location, in order to cut down on vehicular traffic. 

Understanding the Pros and Cons 

One of the challenges of going green is cost. Sustainable, eco-friendly fair-trade materials and products are simply more expensive and can reduce your profit margin. You may be able to make up some of this through volume, however, depending on the attitudes and values of your customer base. 

Marketing the Benefits 

In your marketing, you want to point out how patronizing sustainable businesses benefits a consumer personally. Nobody, especially consumers, wants to hear a sermon about their “responsibilities”; they want to know what’s in it for them.  Consider touting the benefits of a clean environment on personal health and the comfort of knowing their children and grandchildren will be able to enjoy those benefits as well. 

While keeping that in mind, continue to look for opportunities to authentically show your clientele what you’re doing to make your business sustainable. If you find a niche opportunity that isn’t being met in your area, start a green task force and share the positive changes through your marketing. Or join up with an already established organization doing great work and share how the partnership benefits the environment. You should also try to find an influencer marketing agency to help you get the word out. After all, it’s not just about what you do; it’s also about advertising your philosophy and serving as a demonstration of the results. 

Starting or shifting a business to a green model is neither easy nor inexpensive under the current system. It is nonetheless what a growing number of consumers are looking for, so it’s a wise choice in all ways. Make the right choices in your processing and market your venture appropriately. An investment in sustainability may be challenging but can pay off handsomely in the long run. 

Cymru Marketing Specializing in SEO, SMO, Exact Match Keyword Domain Names Sales & Acquisitions, Press Releases, Affiliate Marketing, Lead Generation & Web Design. To get started, please email us at hello@cymrumarketing.com. 

#FairTrade #Marketing #Sustainability #Ecological #LocalEnvironment

Building a Business Can Positively Impact Your Community. 

Image via Pexels 

Written By: Katie Conroy.

Building a Business Can Positively Impact Your Community 

Small businesses make big differences in their communities. In fact, small businesses have added millions of jobs to the economy while many national corporations have eliminated positions. Of course, their impact goes beyond job opportunities — small businesses influence neighborhood culture and become a staple of hometowns. 

However, launching a small business takes careful planning, especially if your goal is changing your city for the better. The following steps prepare you for the realities of running a company while balancing local giving. 

For your next digital marketing project, connect with Cymru Digital Marketing to scale your business!  

Find Your Niche 

Your first decision is what goods or services to sell. It’s essential to offer something the community needs, so do some research to find your niche. For example, if you want to open a restaurant, look at what’s missing from the neighborhood menu. There may be many fast food places but no options for health-conscious customers. 

Apply for Funding 

Every company needs capital to get off the ground. Fortunately, there are plenty of resources for small businesses: 

  • Grants 
  • Small business loans 
  • Entrepreneur programs 

You can also look for investors who agree to finance your enterprise for a percentage of business ownership.  

Set Up Your Website 

Even if you cater to local customers, you still need a website. While it’s possible to create your own with templates, you’ll save time by outsourcing to a professional web designer. The expert team at Cymru Digital Marketing can ensure your site is aesthetically pleasing, user-friendly, and fully functional. 

Maintain Cash Flow With Invoicing Software 

In any business, large or small, accurate invoicing is essential to maintaining cash flow and keeping track of what is owed to you. While billing by hand may be fine for a one-person operation, as soon as you start working with multiple clients or taking on employees, manual invoicing becomes time-consuming and error-prone. This is where invoicing software can save the day. Customer invoicing software automates the billing process, making it faster and easier to generate accurate invoices. You’ll also be able to add a button to invoices that allow customers to pay online.  

Advertise Locally 

Local advertisements get local customers. To bring in the crowds, focus your marketing with the following strategies: 

Partner With Local Entrepreneurs 

Connecting to other local businesses is a great way to support your peers and offer more to the community. One of the best ways to do so is by joining municipal associations. These are usually organized by industry, allowing you to meet entrepreneurs with similar aspirations and challenges. 

Support Community Charities 

Local shops are uniquely positioned to work with charities within the community. You can do so by donating directly, hosting campaigns that donate a portion of sales, and even volunteering time, space, and labor. 

Tap Into Local Talent 

As a local business, you can create opportunities for the talent in your neighborhood. When looking to expand your workforce or hire a contractor, look nearby. A great place to start is universities and trade schools. Reaching out to new graduates and trainees keeps resources in the community. 

Running a small business takes determination and a clear vision of the future, but it’s also incredibly fulfilling, especially when you contribute to your community. With the right approach, your enterprise and neighborhood can flourish. 

#localbusiness #workforce #hirecontractors #universities #tradeschools #websitedesign

Start the Business You Dream About: Prevail Over Your Fears

Keep your business moving forward
Image: Pixabay

Written By: Katie Conroy

Start the Business You Dream About: Prevail Over Your Fears

Starting a business comes with its share of perks, such as being in charge of the company and your financial future. It comes with risks as well, which can be frightening. You, however, need to overcome those fears to reap the rewards. But how do you go about this? Here are some tips from UK Business Banking on how to get started.

Begin as a Side Hustle

If you currently don’t have the financial means to put all your eggs in one basket, work on your business as a side hustle. Continue working your current job, but use your free time to begin your company. This way, you still have stability with less risk and can see if entrepreneurship is a fit for you.

Take Advantage of Free Tools

When starting out, you will likely have limited resources and will need to stretch your funds as far as possible. This means you should use free software and apps whenever

possible. If you’re working with images and documents, for example, use a free online tool to turn your image into a PDF in lieu of purchasing dedicated software. This way, you can store your images in the cloud for free, as well as distribute them as you like.

Know Your Strengths and Weaknesses

Before you begin, take time to reflect on your strengths as well as your weaknesses. Hone in on your strengths as much as you can, and consider hiring help to handle the areas of business where you’re less proficient. For instance, if you’re not artistic, consider hiring a professional to develop your logo. If you’re not familiar with search engine optimization (SEO) and web design, hire a freelancer or company to assist.

Choose a Business Structure Early

When you start planning your business, select a business structure early. This affects how you operate your company. One option is a limited company. It limits your personal liability in case of a lawsuit, which can be a relief if you’re worried about losing your home if an issue arises. Use an online formation service to assist in this process. Doing this helps you comply with the law while spending less of your time handling the paperwork.

Implement Certain Marketing Tactics

How you market your business has a strong impact on your success. Part of the equation consists of digital marketing since the Internet is where most people go to find products or services. You can automate digital marketing efforts with a software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution to integrate with all your existing tools and services to seamlessly help your marketing reach go further.

Nevertheless, you can’t neglect traditional marketing tactics. For example, you should have a business card to give to people you meet. It makes a lasting impression and acts as a gentle reminder of your products or services. You can create business cards online using a pre-fabricated template that allows you to choose your colors, images, text, and font.

Create a Strong Business Plan

Establish a strong business plan that covers a variety of elements, such as your marketing, including your website. Part of your business plan should cover aspects that make your website convenient. For example, save yourself and clients or customers time and hassle by enabling your app or website to accept payments. This promotes long-term growth and makes it simple for your clients or customers.

Compare your payment options carefully. You want a system that doesn’t charge astronomical credit card processing fees and lets your customers or clients know they have the funds available for payment.

Have Realistic Expectations

While making £1 million in your first year of operations would be wonderful, this isn’t realistic. The average small business owner earns less than £30,000 per year. When you’re just getting started, it takes time to gain exposure and become successful.

Risk-Taking Can Equal Success

Although it might seem scary and overwhelming to take a chance, overcoming your fears and starting a business can lead to success.

#seo #searchengineoptimization #businessplan #businesscard #companyformation #limitedcompanies #ukbusinessbanking #owningabusiness

Keep your business moving forward

Going Ahead With the Plan: Starting Your Business After the Pandemic

Going Ahead With the Plan: Starting Your Business After the Pandemic

Have you had dreams of becoming a business owner?

Did the COVID-19 pandemic stop you short in your tracks?

As life slowly moves back to normal, you might still feel hesitant to move forward with your plans to open a new company.

Why You Should Start Now

MIT Sloan Management Review explains that many entrepreneurs are finding the business world has changed. According to experts, the labor market became disrupted in 2020, and there were not enough workers to manage certain industries like retail and health care. Fed up with restrictive jobs, many employees decided to forge their own path.

As bigger chains face hardship with workers leaving them, this is a good time to pursue something you have always dreamed of. Depending on your industry, you might face less competition and find it easier to make your first sale. As businesses close, many sell equipment, giving you a chance to purchase at a low price and start your own company. When things return to normal, you might not find the same savings to benefit from.

Make the Most With What You Have

Before you rush out to take a loan, start small and allow your company to grow as needed. Perhaps this means running your business out of your home or garage to keep costs down. Maybe you’ll only buy a few pieces of equipment or limit how many supplies you purchase to estimate how much demand is currently there. Or maybe you’ll renovate a dedicated space in your home and create a fully functional office, which includes your tech set up (computer, keyboard, printer, monitor, etc.) as well as furniture like a desk and comfortable chair. Keep in mind that any updates you make may even boost your home’s value.

The Business Journals recommends doing some research about the competition in your area. Maybe they recently went out of business themselves, or perhaps there is a service people need that they are not offering. Try to step in and fill these gaps for your potential customers.

Also make sure you are allowed to operate your business in your location, especially if you work from home. HOAs, local governments, and landlords usually limit what can be done and what sort of business can be conducted on properties within their limits. If it’s determined that your business can’t be run out of your current place, consider moving into one of the nearly 4,200 houses for rent in Phoenix, to a property that does allow you to run your operation without restrictions.

Know Where to Turn for Help

It is crucial that you know when to seek help. While you do not want to needlessly throw money around, it is important to outsource certain tasks you are not knowledgeable about or if it would take away time that you could use to grow your company. Sometimes, it is worth the extra cost to spend on a freelancer or another type of remote worker, such as blog writing services, a graphic designer, or a bookkeeper.

If you’re worried about hiring a contractor, consider one or two areas that you think would benefit from outsourcing. Track the results and judge for yourself how much time you get back when you use a freelancer instead of doing it on your own.

Get the Word Out About Your Business

Marketing will play a critical role in the success of your business. Make sure you have a solid marketing plan that can appeal to the demographic you want to attract, all while keeping costs low.

Consider using free or low-cost marketing methods for social media or a website. Later on, you can spend money on marketing that is more likely to stick with people, such as creating promotional items like t-shirts or keychains.

Starting your new business in an unexplored economy might sound challenging, but this might be the best time to put your dreams into action and move forward with your goals.

Image via Pexels

Cymru Marketing is your information hub, providing your business with connections to marketing consultants, branding, SEO, graphic design, public relations, and so much more! Contact us for more info using the form below!

#businessstartups #startups #katieconroy #advicemine #businessconsulting

Wales Independent Marketing and Brand Company

Do you need more traffic to your website? As a Wales independent marketing and brand company, Cymru Marketing offers worldwide digital marketing, including outbound marketing, blog posts, and social media advertising. Contact us today!

Photo courtesy of Pexels

About the Author: Katie Conroy is the creator of AdviceMine.com. She particularly enjoys writing about lifestyle topics and created the website to share advice she has learned through experience, education, and research. 

Early Steps To Take for a Long-Lasting Business

Starting a new business means juggling many responsibilities — not only for your livelihood but for that of your partners and employees. Administrative duties aren’t the most glitzy or appealing parts of the business. But if you develop effective and reliable methods to get them done — like these from Cymru Marketing — you’ll be closer to launching a successful business.

What, exactly, are the least appealing but most important behind-the-scenes tasks you need to do for your young business?

Banking Matters: Accounting and Payroll

From the moment your business launches and years into its lifecycle, you want to have organized, thoroughly documented financial data. As SmallBizDaily points out, accounting information helps you analyze your business’s performance, and it’s important for filing taxes — errors or missed deadlines in your business’s taxes can result in penalties. As your business grows, so will your accounting needs, so you may decide to hire an accountant or use software to take care of the books.

Similarly, a meticulous payroll system will serve you well both in the early days of your business and after it’s fully established. If your payroll taxes aren’t managed correctly, you may incur penalties, so look for a service that offers penalty protection.

The ideal small biz software apps will also streamline other payment processes to save you time, like employee time tracking, fast direct deposit, and automatic payroll calculation with all the payroll forms applied correctly.

Getting Your Start-Up on Its Feet: Funding Options

Accounting and payroll are financial processes that come into play only when your organization has actually secured funding. Funding is perhaps the most basic requirement of having any kind of business, notes Think Latitude, so even if it’s not an appealing part of the work, it is a priority. There are many ways to go about financing your enterprise, each with different advantages.

If you’re starting a business that has a chance at explosive growth, you may consider seeking out venture capital funding from investors. If investors choose to work with you, they can be a huge help in providing the money (“seed capital”) you need to launch your business. They’ll also most likely become members of your company or have some portion of ownership in the business.

Other strategies for funding a new business are crowdfunding, an internet-based effort, or self-financing, which means that you pay the expenses of starting the business yourself and own the business in its entirety.

The Organization at Its Core: Choosing the Operational Structure

One way to approach the need for funding, and the structure of your business as a whole, is by choosing the type of operational structure you’ll be running. Several options are available, including forming a limited company, a sole trader, a partnership, or a limited liability partnership (LLP).

Each type of organization comes with its own set of pros and cons, all dependent on what’s the best fit for your business. For instance, the LLP structure offers both immediate and long-term advantages: It limits personal liability in cases of debt or bankruptcy and is pretty easy to create and operate either on your own, with a lawyer, or through a service.

Starting a business is one of the most exciting career steps you can take, and streamlining the chores of getting started leaves more room for you to enjoy yourself. When technical tasks aren’t stressing you out or slowing you down, you can focus on perfecting the product or service that you set out to share with the world, celebrating what you’ve accomplished alongside your team, and maybe even taking time off.

#startups #startupswales #businessconsultation #consultation #startingabusiness #newbusiness #smallbusiness #marketingcardiff #cymrumarketing

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