Being an entrepreneur isn’t always easy. Making money costs money – sometimes a LOT of money.
But it doesn’t have to. Get a little creative and you can save yourself a ton of cash. Here are some ideas:
Combine Promotions with Other Actions
Advertising and promoting yourself costs money. One way to get a little more bang for your buck is to combine your promotions with things you’d be doing anyway. Sending out invoices, for instance? Include a flyer with each one. Small promotions like that can add up.
Don’t Discount Television
You might think television advertising is as expensive as it gets, but in fact, these days your local cable provider is likely to offer surprisingly low rates for advertising.
It’s a great way to make sure people know your brand without producing a lot of waste (such as with newspaper advertising). It’s perfect for those who like to operate with a paperless office.
Join the Discussion
Look for Internet forums and groups devoted to your area of business, especially if they are local. Join them and take part in the discussion. Don’t make sales pitches – that is frowned upon – but DO share your expertise and include your URL in your signature.
The only thing it costs you is time, and it can result in sales, loyalty, and brand awareness.
Skip the Real Estate
One of the best money-saving office tips of all is to not have an office! This is obviously not possible for many types of businesses, but for many others it’s a perfectly realistic goal.
Those in finance, consultants, Internet gurus, creative types and more can work from home with little trouble. If you do need office space, perhaps for a meeting, there are often single-day rentals available in urban areas.
Ditch the Paper
With a document scanning service and creative use of the Internet, it’s easy to go paperless. You can invoice online, pay your bills, do your planning, share documents, and just about anything else you can imagine online – and you can often do it for free. That adds up!
Use Free Software
Business software costs money, but it doesn’t have to. Through websites like download.com, you can find hundreds of business applications that do everything paid applications do, but at no cost. You can even get a legitimate, legal clone of the entire Microsoft Office suite at openoffice.org. Using free tools means you can redirect that money elsewhere!
Buy It Used
Unless you’re a medical records scanning company that needs the latest gear or something along those lines, you probably don’t need the latest and greatest. Save yourself a few dollars and buy used equipment whenever you can, provided it won’t pose a safety issue to do so.
When You Can, Rent
There may be some equipment you need from time to time but that you don’t necessarily need to have around all the time. Consider renting when you can. Better to rent that packaging machine twice a year than to spend five figures on it to own it.
No single action above will turn your company around, but several of these tricks at once can really add up!