No rule says once you graduate college, you must start a career. Working for someone else isn’t an option for some people. If we’re honest, the world is changing. The career you thought you wanted entering college may not exist when you graduate.
Or technological integrations have changed how the job is done. Now, what was once a six-figure position has been downgraded.
What if you could still get your degree and use it to create a small startup business? It would give you immediate income while you explore career options. Better yet, you could create an opportunity for yourself where you become the employer.
Do I have your attention?
Young entrepreneurs are on the rise. We are in the midst of a digital era that allows people to follow their passion and become top earners. There are times when you’ll struggle or feel stressed, but we want to show you how to succeed.
If you’re not sure what to do after graduate, it’s okay. Keep reading to learn more about how to create a startup business after graduation.
What Is a Good Small Startup Business for College Graduates?
As a college graduate going out into the world, you probably have student loan debt. If a job offer doesn’t come quickly, you’ll need to explore other options for income.
With a startup, the possibilities are endless when it comes to starting a small business. Entrepreneurship is growing around the world and accounts for an estimated 582 million self-made business owners.
Business ideas have a better chance of success when centered around something you’re already knowledgeable about. Here are some popular suggestions.
- Social Media Influencer
- Content Creator
- Online Clothing Store
- Virtual Assistant
- Motivational Speaker
- Green Cleaning Provider
- Jewelry Maker
Home-based businesses are the most economical because they eliminate the excess overhead of office space and the expenses that come with it. They also give you the flexibility to work on your terms.
Put Your Passion and Talent to Work
The easiest route to finding the right startup company for a young entrepreneur is to follow your passion. Make a list of your talents and abilities. How can they get used when it comes to building a profitable business?
Are computers something you’re good at? You can start a computer repair business. Become a consultant for other small business owners.
Do you have a gift for gab? Are you a creator? People just like, you are earning seven-figure incomes as content creators on multiple social media platforms.
You’re not obligated to focus on what you’re passionate about. There are franchise opportunities available. With a little research, you can benefit from business setups that are already available on the market.
Seek Information on Starting a Business
Before jumping into a startup business, do your research. Sometimes things sound too good to be true because the advertising is misleading.
Once you narrow down your options, seek information on those industries. Determine if there’s a great need for what you want to offer. What is the earning potential?
Research to see who is your competition is—narrow your research to see what competitors are doing right and what they aren’t doing well. Reach out to people and ask if they’re willing to have a conversation and answer your questions.
If you’re lucky, a successful entrepreneur might become open to being your mentor.
Financing Your Business
Startup businesses, whether large or small, require finances. As a college graduate, money probably isn’t readily available. The time to start thinking about starting a business should take place before graduation.
If this is something you’re already considering, you can set aside some of your grant and student loan money. In situations where student loans are an issue, you’ll need a plan to pay off the loans and still start your business.
Use monetary graduation gifts to start your business. Another option is to include information about your business idea in your graduation announcements.
Family and friends are more likely to invest in your business idea if you’re upfront about your plans.
Create a brief outline of your goals, include a way they can contribute to your success on your journey to entrepreneurship. For those who make contributions, keep them abreast of your plans and accomplishments. When people are invested in your success, they become valuable allies down the road.
Take a look at your credit, and make sure everything is in order. Challenge any bad information. Business loans are difficult to get and having poor credit will not help.
Write a Business Plan
Start by writing a business plan. A business plan is an outline of your objectives in starting a business. You’re not obligated to stick to every detail of the plan. Consider it a guide to reaching your goals.
Included in the plan is an executive summary and mission statement—this a summary of the business. Next, include a description of the business.
You’ll want to do a market analysis showing how and why this is a financially feasible business.
The next steps include the organizational structure. The structure is an outline of the business owner and other roles. List the products or services you’ll offer and how you plan to market your small business.
Other elements go into finances and proposed projects. Your initial business plan will have modifications as your business moves forward. Keep it updated, so it’s always ready for distribution when the need arises.
Incorporate Your Business
The road to entrepreneurship includes incorporating your business. Incorporation is the process of registering your business with the state where your operations will take place.
Incorporation is usually a simple process. Every state has its own process. The information and application are typically online. You can contact your department of business regulations for more information.
One of the biggest benefits of incorporating a business is it allows you to open a business bank account. It’s important to build a business relationship with a local bank. You’ll increase the chances of being approved for a loan when the time comes.
Explore Copyright and Trademark Options
Will your post-graduate business have intellectual property that will need legal protection? Chances are the answer is yes to some level.
As an entrepreneur, you may write eBooks or have other marketing materials unique to your business. Consider copyrighting your information to keep others from using it without permission.
Another important aspect of becoming an entrepreneur is creating a recognizable brand. Your brand is how people relate to your company. It’s your logo, tagline, and catchphrase. Trademarks protect these things to prevent someone else from using them without permission.
Copyrights are easy to do on yourself. Trademarks can get a little tricky and may require the advice of a Trademark attorney.
Protect Your Brand! Register a Trademark at CorpNet® – Get Started!
Create a Planning Team
Depending on how complex your business plan will become, building a team is an idea to explore. Even a simple concept as a YouTube channel can grow into a business that needs writers, editors, videographers, and more.
Creating a planning team will allow you to see the full potential of your business. The steps you’ll take to get from point A to point B are important to a successful journey.
Gaining different perspectives will give you a new outlook on your goals.
Your team members should have a diverse range of talent and experience. Each member needs to bring something different. It makes no sense to have five videographers and no one with show concepts or brainstorming abilities.
Keep in mind your team member’s time is valuable to them. Only call a meeting when everyone can attend. Choose a meeting area with limited or no distractions. Provide food and anything else you’ll need to documents your progress.
Invest in Business Software
There are so many types of business software on the market to help a post-graduate business owner. These applications will help streamline your business processes and eliminate the need to hire employees.
There are accounting apps, customer management apps, and inventory tracking apps. The greatest benefits to using software the ease of use and the ability to keep track of your progress.
You’ll want to use software that provides analytical reporting. In addition to the reports the apps provide, creating a Good Analytics account allows you to track your online progress.
The other software includes integrations for your website, social media channels, and Google searches.
Use the data for future planning and modifications. Your business has to have the flexibility to adapt to constantly changing business trends.
Design a Website
Regardless of what type of startup business you enter into, you’ll need a website. If you start an eCommerce business, the website plan you choose must include accepting secure payments.
A business website serves many purposes. If your post-graduate business is serving a product, a website is an alternative to a brick-and-mortar business. The website is instrumental in allowing clients to book appointments and register for courses for businesses offering a service.
You can set your booking app to require a non-refundable deposit or payment in full.
The next level for your business website is content creation. Start an industry blog to pave your path as a subject matter expert. The blog articles then provide the content you share in eMarketing campaigns. Written blog content is easily converted to video and used to grow your online presence using Livestreams and YouTube.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
A business website is only as effective as your SEO tactics. There are several techniques you must employ on your website.
- Link building
- URL creation
- Image and video optimization
These items are easy to implement. Or you can hire an SEO or marketing specialist.
Develop a Marketing Strategy
It’s hard to believe, but many young entrepreneurs invest in a startup business but do not invest in marketing. They’re under the misconception, all that’s needed is an eCommerce website, a product, and a few posts on social media.
The biggest eye-opener for business owners is learning their business can’t survive with only family and friends’ support.
A marketing strategy includes having business social media pages. Utilizing digital ads, investing in Google Retargeting, and creating brand ambassadors. The more people see and hear about your business, the great chance you’ll have sales.
If marketing isn’t your strong suit, look for another college graduate looking to start a marketing business. The two of you can help each other on your journeys to entrepreneurship.
Grow Your Social Media Channels
As a young entrepreneur, you’re probably very familiar with social media and have a comfort level interacting with different platforms. Social media is a plus because your business will need multiple online opportunities for promotions
Separate your business social media pages from your personal pages. Build a following for your business and utilize the tools each platform offers.
You’ll want to explore Facebook and Instagram Stories. Tik Tok and Instagram Reels are tools geared towards younger audiences.
Continue to Educate Yourself on the Chosen Industry
Once your small startup business is up and running, it’s important to stay abreast of industry trends. We are in a time when things change quickly. What works today may get upgraded tomorrow. Things that appealed to buyers this month are considered obsolete three months from now.
You also want to monitor what’s working for you. This level of monitoring requires utilizing the information available to you. Perform market research before you start your business and follow-up each year.
Analytical data is useful when measuring the results of your business strategy. Compare this date to that of industry leaders—Tweek what you’re doing to improve results.
You’re the Boss Now!
After leaving college, creating a startup business is an awesome way to utilize the lessons and tools gained over the past four years. Even if your chosen profession takes you into a designated career, the business will bring extra income.
The information in this article is only the beginning. Are you feeling inspired? Click here to join our small business forums and learn more about becoming an entrepreneur.