10 keys for success in today's market
1. Build a website and learn how to use the web to market your business.
2. Perform SEO
work to make that website rank well in local searches.
3. Read every book you can get your hands on about sales and marketing. Reinvest 20% of every job's gross billing back into advertising.
4. Read (or buy on audio tape) E-Myth by Michael Gerber. This is the business owners bible.
5. Never sell a job, sell a service experience. You'll get paid what you are worth.
6. Pay yourself first. This is not money you reinvest. This pays your personal bills. Pay yourself the same amount every week.
7. Set aside another 20% of your gross billing as your company net profit. This is whats called cash flow. This is what buys new equipment, adds employees and lets you make purchases without tapping your personal account.
8. Learn your costs. You cannot price a job for a customer until you know your expenses. Your costs are EVERYTHING that is paid to maintain your business. Liability insurance, bonding, vehicle depreciation, fuel, insurance, advertising, helpers, owner payroll, phone lines, office expenses, accounting, etc.
9. Let's get back to number 6. Only 2 out of five people buy based on price. That leaves three customers that are willing to pay top rate for top service. Never worry about "charging too much". There is no such thing. you charge as much as your market will bear.
10. Keep your job as long as you can. Come to terms that owning a business is 24/7. If it were easy, the failure rate for startup businesses would not be 90% during the first five years. The biggest reason for failure is being undercapitalized. If you have steady income you can start your advertising and pick and choose higher end clientele.
Good Luck to you!