Monthly Archives: May 2012

MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS

Is your business meeting a need in the market? The most successful businesses are those that are selling products or services to meet an unmet need that customers don’t know that they have or else currently isn’t being met by the competition. 

Do you have a written marketing plan? If not, let’s start by doing some strategic thinking. Your business should define its marketing mix.  This involves defining your “four P’s”:

1. Product – what is the product that you’re selling?  How is it different from the competition’s product or services?

2. Place – where will you offer and deliver your product or services? What is the specific time of day and year that work will be performed?

3. Price – how much will you charge for your services or products? Will your price cover all of your costs plus provide a profit? You should base your price on the amount that customers are willing to pay, not on the cost of providing the service or what your competitors are charging.

4. Promotion – how will you let your customers know about the products or services that you are offering to them. Several methods are available, and you should analyze the best method for your business.

 If you need help, please call us as your “trusted small business advisor.”  We are only a phone call away – (727) 391-7373.

TEN TIPS FOR RUNNING A SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS

1. Determine the type of business entity in which you will conduct your business. The major choices include: sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company or LLC, C corporation, S corporation, and not-for-profit organization.

2. Apply for your Federal Tax Identification number with the IRS.

3. Establish a separate bank account for your business.

4. Set up a business accounting system for your business. There are several to choose from but we recommed QuickBooks Pro software to meet your small business accounting, payroll, and financial reporting needs.  As an Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, we can help set this program up for you, train you on how to use it, and help you troubleshoot problems.

5. Set up the forms that you’ll need to track transactions such as invoices, purchase orders, estimates, and statements. These can be set up in QuickBooks Pro.

6. Check to make sure that you have all of the business licenses that you need.

7. Purchase business insurance to protect your financial investment.

8. Market your business through referrals, a website, social media, Internet advertising, and networking events.

9. Make quarterly estimated tax payments to the IRS throughout the year, especially if your business is a sole proprietorship, partnership, or an S corporation.

10. Value your time. Spend as much time as possible working “on” the business and not “in” the business.  Delegate and outsource tasks to experts and to your staff.

Linda A. Stortz, CPA, P.A. is a local CPA firm in Seminole, FL that provides accounting and QuickBooks solutions, tax return preparation services, and business advisory services to small businesses in the Tampa Bay, FL area. The firm specializes in advising small business owners to run a successful business. To find out more about our business services, please call us today at (727) 391-7373.