What do you need to start a business? Maybe you already have the great idea, the enthusiasm and passion, and even some people eager to work with or for you. These are all key components of your success.

But, what about the technical stuff? What do you actually need to do in order to jump start your business idea in Blount County? Below are five great resources we suggest you use in order to get the most out of your first efforts.

 

  • Education

 

Few people have the time to go to business school or take specialized programs, but you can take a look around for any business start-up seminars. In Blount County, the Chamber of Commerce has a seminar available here.

 

  • Research

 

Any business today needs a bit of research before it can begin. Not only do you have to do that vital market research that helps you to learn if there is an audience for the product or services you want to sell, but you need to know as much as possible about that audience.

How do you do this research? The internet is a good place to begin, as is the local library, but one of the best forms of research is to look at others in the same industry. In fact, going out and speaking with them may be the best research, or with those in closely related fields. Networking is a key part of research, and you’ll find that a Chamber of Commerce is often a great place to begin networking and speaking to those in your field.

 

  • Planning

 

While a lot of people will say a written business plan is not needed, this is just wrong! It is the map you’ll follow, revisit and use repeatedly to get the business started and keep it moving forward over time. It outlines the steps you’ll take, the goals you’ll need to meet, and more. The Blount County Chamber of Commerce has a few great business planning resources available on their website, including details about BPlans.com and Planware.org.

 

  • Use Social Media

 

Businesses MUST be on social media, and particularly sites like Facebook and LinkedIn. Most of us are well aware about the ways that Facebook can be used with a blog and marketing plan, but what about LinkedIn?

The good news is that the Blount County Chamber of Commerce has a wonderful step by step article that walks you through the use of this amazing resource for your business endeavors.

 

  • Join the Chamber of Commerce

 

Of course, one of the best ways to begin building and growing your business is to surround yourself with other business professionals. The Blount County Chamber of Commerce has representatives from every imaginable industry. The benefits of your membership are also crucial to a startup with everything from free marketing and advertising to deep discounts on key services needed by all businesses.

If you are confused about your next steps in a startup, we hope this has pointed you towards the best resources in Blount County. Use them today and you’re sure to be off to a great start tomorrow.