You have a great business idea, now’s the time to focus on cultivating your special place in the business world. There are a few steps involved with this process.
Develop your Niche
What is a niche? There are actually two definitions of a niche and both apply to you as a future business owner. The first definition involves finding a suitable position for you as a business owner. This goes back to finding your passions in life, realizing what you’re good at, and figuring out what you are going to do with this information- or as I call it, deciding what you want to do “when you grow up.”
The second definition comes when you know what you want to do in business, but just want to set yourself apart from the competition. A niche is something specialized- which in turn, can be very profitable for a business owner.
Say for instance you want to open a home health agency. There’s nothing extraordinary about opening a home health agency, but what if your business specializes in pediatric pulmonary patients? If you were the parent of a child with pulmonary problems, wouldn’t you want to go with a specialized home health agency rather than a general agency?
Specializing sets you apart from other businesses.
Developing your niche will keep you going when times get rough and will also help your business stand out from the competition.
This is an important step not to be overlooked. Education is needed for any successful business owner. Education will also help you develop and execute the proper niche for your business. Take a look at your potential competition- what are they doing that works? How can you change or improve upon with your own business?
These answers lie within your own self-education. In whatever type of business you plan to pursue, you must educate yourself in order to provide your customers with high quality service. Read books on your specialty. Take classes for credentials. Go to conferences. Find a mentor already in the business and pick their brains. These are all ways to gain valuable information for your new business so it will be profitable and successful.
Develop Products and Services
All business offer specific products and services to their customers. Have you decided what products or services you will offer your customers?
Make a list of potential products and services you could offer to your customers. One major variable that will affect your list will be your target market. We haven’t spoke about a target market yet, but it’s basically the type of customer your business is intended for.
Will your business focus on patients? Family of the patient? Physicians? The general public? It’s important you determine your target market for your business. Once you decide your target market it will be easier to pinpoint the types of products and services you can offer.
After you make a list of products and services estimate how much you will price them. There are a few aspects you need to factor into the price. Determine how much value your product or service will bring to the customer. Also take into consideration how much it will cost for you to obtain the product or develop the service. Subtract that from what you intend to sell it for and you get your profit margin. Remember- you want to make a profit too!
By this point you should know what type of business you want to start, how to develop your niche, why education is so important in business, and what products and services you will offer to your target consumers. You’ve learned a lot in the last few weeks!
Next week we’ll wrap up the From Nurse to Business Owner: Strategies to Succeed series with two very important steps: estimating potential start-up costs and selecting a legal structure for your business.
In addition to working as a RN, Nachole Johnson is a freelance copywriter and an author with her first book, You’re a Nurse and Want to Start Your Own Business? The Complete Guide, to be released later this year. Visit her ReNursing blog at http://renursing.wordpress.com.