Each month in the UK, 50,000 people set up small businesses. Unfortunately, 80 per cent of those fail in the first year. Here at Upmarketry, we feel a change is coming. Here’s six reasons why the support for startups and small businesses should help drive success in 2018. Let the big ol’ pep talk commence.
The wealth of support for start ups and small businesses is overwhelming
You may work alone or with a small team but you’re by no means without a lot of help and advice. Enterprise Nation, StartUp Britain, the Federation of Small Businesses, the Forum of Private Business and the School for Startups are just some of the communities set up to provide support for startups and small businesses. They offer advice, free resources and networking opportunities. There’s also a wealth of news and opinion across the web for startups on…well….starting up, as well as marketing, customer management, growth, legal advice and accountancy help. Among the best are Smallbusiness.co.uk, Business Matters, Real Business, Growthbusiness.co.uk , Startups.co.uk and Growing Business.
Don’t struggle alone. Go online and find help for your business problem. And if marketing is what you need help with, there’s a startup marketing agency right here.
Those working in start ups and small businesses are some of Britain’s most driven individuals
Big businesses commonly offer their staff generous financial packages which small businesses and start ups can’t afford to match. Therefore, those who opt to work for a start up or small business are after other benefits. These include the ability to make a direct impact on the success of the business they work for, to gain greater responsibility and accountability for their actions, and to work in smaller teams alongside other experts, thereby expanding their own knowledge and abilities. This means they’re likely to be incredibly ambitious, driven and eager to better themselves which makes for quite a valuable team.
There are also recent reports that show that millennials are shunning graduate jobs at large firms as they’d prefer to set up their own companies. Take some under your wing to “show them the ropes” and you’ll have a powerful workforce at your side.
Marketing techniques are changing and small businesses are better placed to exploit them
This point is one I feel particularly strongly about. Having worked both in-house and at agencies serving big and small businesses, I have seen firsthand how restricted big companies can be when taking a stand, making a change or running an integrated marketing campaign. They have so many interested parties that what may start out as a bold idea, goes through so many revisions that it ends up being a shadow of its former self and not really worth it.
Small businesses do not have this problem and this puts them in a great position to capitalise on the new wave of marketing methods. Currently, some of the most effective ways of generating leads, sales and loyal customers require growth hacking tactics. These include gamification, contests, leveraging the reach of other brands, advanced A/B testing, and demonstrating responsiveness and flexibility on a daily basis. Perfect for small businesses and startups.
And if you’re not sure where to start to learn more about these, contact Upmarketry and together we’ll work out a plan.
GDPR could paralyse big businesses
As of May this year, the General Data Protection Regulations came into force. These require all businesses operating in the EU to change how they store personal data. If a company emails someone and cannot provide proof that they obtained permission to do so, they could be fined €20 million or 4% of annual global turnover – whichever is higher.
To avoid this risk, the best approach for a lot of companies will be to delete their mailing lists and start again. This will be a huge job for big businesses, and is likely to hurt them far more than it will small companies who can adopt other marketing techniques to restore their sales databases quickly.
For support on how to prepare for GDPR, Simply Business has produced an in-depth guide here.
Tax breaks and funding are currently in your favour
StartUp Britain, a business-led but government-backed campaign launched in 2011, introduced tax breaks for investors and owners of small businesses. Make sure you’re taking advantage of them!
The government also launched a StartUp Loans initiative in 2012 which has so far given over £300m to over 40,000 start ups across the UK.
There are also lots of local enterprise schemes so it’s worth doing your research to see how to apply. A good option could be to seek a grant for new employees which will mean you get an eager apprentice or graduate at a very good price.
Everything great starts off small
Every big business had to start somewhere. Apple started in Steve Jobs’ parents’ garage. Cadbury began as a small grocer. And the Yankee Candle company came about when the founder started making scented candles for his mum.
And more recently, some small businesses have experienced rapid growth thanks to some creative marketing techniques. Airbnb was struggling to gain traction until it took advantage of Craigslist’s popularity and redirected listings to its own site. Etsy reached out to its target audiences on forums and similar sites, worked out what they wanted and then made it for them. And Groupon made it so easy for customers to share offers with friends and family that virality was quickly achieved.
Check out our Meet the Founder series for other examples of big growth stories and you may find some inspiration to help your own business. The support you need could come in the form of a partner, forums or in the loyalty of your existing customer base.
The Magic of Marketing in 2018
Here at Upmarketry, we’re confident that 2018 is the year for small businesses and startups to shine. The opportunities for fast growth are enormous and the multi-million pound marketing budgets are not necessary.
It’s no longer about big budget PR, social and ad campaigns. It’s about delivering a business goal through a careful blend of traditional and non-traditional marketing tactics that only smaller companies can truly master.
That’s why we’ve set up Upmarketry to be THE small business and startup marketing agency. And we’ve set our price point lower than our competition to make ourselves accessible to you.
Upmarketry stands against the idea that only big brands can make a difference. It stands for the startups, the one man bands, and the small businesses.
We should talk.
Hannah is the Managing Director of Upmarketry.