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Nine business start up milestones worth celebrating

Updated: Aug 12, 2019

Starting a business has its ups and downs. Make sure that you celebrate the journey, not just the destination.

Not all businesses can be started in seven days. Many of us are trying to launch a small business while also holding down a full-time job plus reminding family and friends that we are still alive #alwaysbesidehustlin. Start up businesses usually don't have the budget to hire a supporting cast to do the hard work #solopreneur. This means simultaneously learning the ins and outs of small business marketing, strategy, finance, technology, customer service, product development and legal. Celebrating each little win keeps you motivated on the journey to start your own business.



How we celebrate milestones at Ignitzee


Below we have listed out our top milestones to celebrate on your to starting your own small business.

1. You have a reason for being

The "why" of your small business is the bit that you'll need to keep coming back to as you go on your roller coaster journey. If this isn't strong enough, it will be easy to run out of puff along the way.

#smallbusinessgoals


2. You know who your customers will be and what they want

This is different from knowing the ins and outs of your product. It's about knowing your customers better than you know yourself. Expect that the first few times you do your spiel, it will come out a bit clunky. It's always good to practice at home first and ask for feedback from friends and family on your pitch #pitchperfect. Be kind to yourself about how long this might take. At Ignitzee, we knew that we broadly knew that we wanted to focus on small business and the start up process. Getting to a point where we had our elevator pitch - who we are, what we do and why we do it - took at least three months.


3. You have worked out how you will make money

Remember Jerry McGuire? There's a reason that he was yelling down the phone "show me the money". Your passion project isn't a business until you have worked out how its going to make money #showmethemoney. There's a big, painful difference between everyone loving on your {insert name of handicrafts here} and actually handing over their hard-earned to clutter up their house. There's also the need to be different - the most common small businesses in Australia are construction; professional, scientific and technical services and retail. If you are planning to start a plumbing business, you'll need to think about how you will be different to everyone else who can unclog a toilet...


4. You are a 'legit' business

Australia might be one of the easiest countries in the world to start a business, but it still does require some effort and cost. To properly set up a business, you need to have ABN (regardless of whether you are claiming for GST) and have set up a company structure (such as partnership, sole trader, company). Getting to this milestone shows that you have put on your big person pants to work out how much you are likely to make, what the financial risks are and spoken to someone who knows things about finance. Go you!


5. You have a support network

About now, sh*it probably just got real. It was about the time that you get talking about dollars and business structures that things can get a bit much. A great support network of like-minded and supportive business owners can help you over the lumpy bits. If you have the budget, a business coach is also helpful #findyourfive #leagueofextraordinarywomen.


6. You have a website

It could be a 'coming soon' landing page, but having gone to the trouble of registering your domain name and linking it to something is worth a celebration. A single page website works for most businesses and can be easily created with modern website tools.


7. You have business cards

There's something so very exciting about having your business card printed in front of you. It means that you have worked out your logo, you have set up an email address (that isn't skanky_chicken007@hotmail.com), you have your website and *hopefully* all of your social media accounts set up. Really, this one should be a double celebration as it shows how much you have achieved.


If you are struggling on this front, we have a bit of a love affair going on with Moo.com. They have great designs. Being able to have unique designs on the back of each card is a great talking point with clients and when networking. Our Ignitzee cards with gapingvoid cartoons always get noticed.


8. You have products and services ready to launch

For some businesses, having products and services ready to offer is straight-forward. For others where research and development has been needed, it's a very big deal. It might be a prototype, a pilot or a soft-launch - anything that brings your idea to life is worth celebrating. If you have had to do lots of research and development, make this one a double-celebration as well.


9. You have your first paying customer

Ultimately, your business needs customers and money coming through the door. Someone who isn't your mum, a friend of a friend or your pilates teacher... A real customer means that all of the hard work that you have put into marketing is working. We have some special Ignitzee sparkling wine tucked away for subscribers who make the most of Ignitzee's smarts to get to this stage to help their celebrations.


What are the milestones that you have celebrated or will celebrate for your business?