Tag: australian entrepreneurship

How to Apply for Business Grants Online in Australia

Raising funds is one of the most important things to think about, whether you are a startup looking to develop a mobile app or an established business that wants to take it to the next level.

There are plenty of options available to do this these days, from finding investors, creating a crowdfunding campaign or even borrowing money from friends and family to raise funds.

One great way to do this is to apply for a business grant from the Australian Government. Business grants can provide you with funding anywhere from $500 to $2,000,000, depending on the nature of your business. Although it takes a considerable amount of effort to apply to one, it is well worth the time as the business grants are non-repayable, unlike investors who would typically demand partial ownership of your business (equity) or request repayments depending on their contract with you.

1. Access the grants website business.gov.au/Assistance

Depending on the nature of your business, you will want to apply to a different set of business grants available. On the Grants & Assistance page, there is a form that will help you search and list the most appropriate grants for your type of business.

2. Select the reason for your application

This is where you will choose the reason for applying to your business grant.

  • If you are a startup / business that has only an idea but is looking for a grant to research and develop your idea into an actual product, then click on “research and develop a novel idea”.
  • If you are a startup / business that wants to expand their existing business or to scale, then click on “expand my business”.
  • If you are startup / business that has an existing product developed, understands your market and has intellectual property rights to your product, you would want to “commercialise a product”.
  • Similarly, if your need for a grant relates to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, Arts, Disaster Assistance, heritage projects, hiring more employees, training existing employees etc. then select the appropriate categories.

3. Choose your State, Industry, Annual Turnover and Years of Operation

Your selections here will also influence the type of business grants that the website will suggest you apply for.

Not all grants are necessary for you to apply for, especially if your startup / business is within a certain industry. Some grants are only offered to applicants who are within a specific industry or specific lifecycle / stage of their business.

Click on the “Show Assistance” button and the website will list the grants that are most relevant to you.

4. Go through the list of suggested business grants

Click into every business grant that is listed to you and have an in-depth read of the requirements for each grant.

Inside the business grant information, you can click on “Tell Me More”, which will give you information on:

  • The overview of the grant
  • Who the grant is targeted towards
  • Who can apply
  • The eligibility criteria
  • How to apply.

5. Commence applications on relevant business grants

Once you have read through the list of suggested business grants, decide which ones you may want to apply for. Choose the most relevant grants for your startup / business that you should apply for and don’t waste time on ones that aren’t, as it is time consuming to try apply for every grant and you will need solid detailed research and solid preparation to build your grant application.

Depending on the business grant, you may be able to apply directly on the website or you may have to contact an external government department to start your application.

6. Do enough research and preparation before submitting the application

Make sure you do enough research to back up why the government should provide you with the business grant. Your should:

  • Have prepared a professional, but unique application.
  • Have outlined a solid business strategy.
  • Understand all the necessary requirements and upkeep for the grant.
  • Make sure the grant is the right fit for your business.
  • Keep an eye on the grant deadlines.

Considering the high number of applications for Australian business grants, half-complete applications or ones that aren’t thoroughly researched enough will most likely be rejected.

 

A Guide to Perfecting your Mobile App Investor Pitch

Delivering powerful pitches to investors is something all business owners, and most importantly new entrepreneurs, need to consider in order to start generating competitive profit.

According to Forbes.com, one of the biggest mistakes in trying to pitch an investor is the time you allow yourself to present your idea and deliver your message across. If you are not able to present your idea in about one minute, your chances of losing that potential investor are highest.

Clearly, a flawless pitching process needs plenty of attention to detail and a very clear focus.

Market trends that support the need to deliver powerful pitches to an investor

The market trend represents one of the most important sales-pitch statistic in helping the company acquire new customers. Here are some examples of market trend facts to tout in your sales pitch:

Did you know:

  • 75% of industry leaders recently surveyed suggest they plan to double that department’s budget this year.
  • 85% of businesses in your industry already invest in this service and have experienced 20% growth in the past quarter. (Source)

 

Key points that you should be aware of when pitching to an angel investor

An angel investor refers to the person that invests in startups that are not quite ready for venture capitalists. In other words, they represent the detail that could make all the difference, because they believe in your message before it reaches mainstream audiences.

So how do you approach these angel investors?

These are the key points of pitching to investors:

  • Know your market, business and competition from top to bottom – In other words, make sure you are able to promote your business’s benefits accordingly and explain how your organisation can help solve a specific problem.
  • Listen to what the investors are saying – Don’t rely exclusively on a prepared presentation, instead listen to their inquiries and answer them in a direct manner.
  • Watch your body language – Your handshake is what matters here! Be careful about making it not too firm but not too subtle either.
  • Dress accordingly – Make sure your outfit matches the meeting your are going to be a part of.
  • Share your success stories – Talk about your customers so that it shows you are continually operating, even if in a small way.
  • Contact your network for investors – Chances are you could meet someone who might introduce you to an investor.

 

How to create the perfect pitch

Think about delivering your pitch as a way to tell your story. If you can present your message in an engaging way and manage to relate your story to the investor, you are halfway there!

Here is an overview for the best way to approach pitching to a potential investor:

Your target market

Think about who you’re building your product for and refer to aspects such as how many people are in each market segment or how much they are currently spending

Customer acquisition

Make sure you have an answer to these questions: How will you reach your customers? How much will it cost? How will you measure success?

Your competition

Even though this segment is often overlooked, describing what makes you different from your competitors ensures that you are building a unique solution to your prospective customers.

Your team

Investors invest in people first and in ideas second… talk about why you and your business partners are the right team to promote and execute the company’s marketing vision.

Your financial summary

The answers that you need to present your investors with correspond with the following inquiries:

  1. How much money has already been invested in your company?
  2. Who are the people that have already invested in your company?
  3. What are your company’s ownership percentages?
  4. How much more you need to go to the next level?
  5. Will you need to raise multiple rounds of financing?

 

EB Pearls can help you create the perfect pitch to attract investors and increase your sales! Make sure you get in touch with one of our representatives and start working on your business project today!

Entrepreneurship in Australia, It’s Time to Rise

A BankWest report found that Australia is a breeding ground for youthful business starters, having business owners aged 25 to 34 boomed by 8.5 per cent in the recent year of 2014.

Sadly, however, according to The Foundation for Young Australians, entrepreneurs in the 18 to 24 age bracket are underrepresented, with only 8.7% starting a new business.

Whether you opt for a lifestyle business or choose to help the lives of professional people, the opportunities lie on your home soil.

“You can be whatever it is that you want to be!”… this has to be one of the most important advice a person can receive throughout the course of their life. In the world of entrepreneurship it is the single, most relevant strategy that sets the tone for professional success.

Entrepreneurship is a calling, not a job

For most people looking to start their own business, entrepreneurship is more of a trend market. This is the wrong outlook. You must be passionate about the project you wish to endeavour in and willing to do whatever it takes to make it happen.

The first thing you must do is invest in yourself. Education is key – books, seminars, and courses must be a priority, so you are able to learn all that is required to begin a venture. In fact, most successful entrepreneurs agree that leadership is a skill that needs to be learned. It is more about grit than it is about talent.

It is a common misconception that entrepreneurship runs in the family. However, recent studies show that more than half of entrepreneurs were the first in their families to start a business, while the average age of company founders, when they started their current businesses, was 40.

Key signs that set entrepreneurs apart from the 9 ‘till 5 crowd

When developing an idea for a business, entrepreneurs should be able to answer the following questions without hesitation:

  • What is my purpose?

 

Materialising dreams into a profitable business starts with finding out what drives your profession. Both internal and external goals are important. Don’t do it all for the profit, but don’t forget that you need a good way to measure your success.

  • Who are my people?

 

Another key characteristic of a successful online entrepreneur is that they are surrounded by a team of right people. Finding the right supplier and making sure they are able to deliver the requested quality is mandatory to any profitable business. This works the same when working with the right mobile app agency, web agency in Sydney or web development agency for your business’s online brand. 

From here, assemble trusted associates whose expertise will assist you in your venture. Determine what culture you want to cultivate in your business. Operating with the right cultures and values is one of the most important aspects of establishing the right work team.

  • What are my plans?

 

If you want your business to succeed, you need to make sure you are selling the right product. An excellent way to test your idea or validate your market is to write a survey, maybe share it with friends and then get them to pass it on to as many people as possible. When working with an app development company from Sydney, the first step to take is market research: what are the must-have features of your app that can propel it to the top of App Store or Google Play?

As simple and easy as it may sound, this is one of the most important things to do, in order to get feedback on your own idea, without having to spend a lot of money doing it.

The five most relevant qualities of a successful entrepreneur

All acknowledged entrepreneurs have something in common, and that is a success mindset. A recent Kauffman Foundation survey revealed that 75% of entrepreneurs indicated a desire to make money as an important motivation in becoming an entrepreneur, while only 4.5% said the inability to find traditional employment was an important factor in starting a company.

But money comes with a new way of thinking and doing business. Here is what sets a successful entrepreneur apart from the rest of the crowd:

  1. Reframing failure – in other words, managing to see failure as a possible feedback and take constructive criticism to a new level of profitability.
  2. Doing what others won’t – going further than most people and pushing through their own personal barriers of resistance to do what needs to be done.
  3. Knowing their own mission – refers to the ability of communicating in an effortless manner and sharing their story with the rest of the world.
  4. Delegating – not being afraid to put control in the hands of others.
  5. Having depth of vision – anticipating what clients and business needs are.

Leadership is learning, and some of the greatest lessons come from making mistakes and picking yourself back up again. For a successful entrepreneur, following the right advice and setting themselves apart from the rest of the crowd is crucial to establishing their position in the industry they are a part of.

 

With that in mind, if you need professional assistance and support in developing your own online brand, do not hesitate to contact us here. We can provide you with optimised solutions to cater to your every professional need.

How to Take Advantage of Referral Marketing

Referral marketing, the modern word-of-mouth advertising

Yes, people are purchasing your products based on what other people say about you. And there’s no other marketing strategy that can beat this practice. The simple reason why people trust referral marketing so much is because its principle is grounded on reviews written by people who have already interacted with your business.

It is so powerful that can either boost your business or even break it. The good news is that there are ways of turning it to your advantage. Even if you receive multiple negative reviews, research has shown that the majority of customers will return to your business if they see you take early action to fix their problems.

In today’s article we will show you how you can start your own referral strategy and improve your referrals

Find out what people are saying about you online
Before making any decision on referral marketing strategies, you need to find out what people are saying about your business on the internet. Many business owners don’t know that, even if you don’t have an online business profile, people are still talking about your business on social media, forums, or on their own websites.

Google Analytics has an entire segment that can help you find out how people review your business and on which websites your brand is mentioned.

Improve the buying experience & Review your team’s attitude toward customers
When people want to buy from your website, the process should be easy and fast. Sending an order should be just a few clicks away.

Tip: When you review your current buying procedures, put yourself in the shoes of the customer and see if you find yourself satisfied with the experience.

Bonus tip: It all starts with you. If you want to increase your revenue, you need people to trust in your business.

Customer service is a really important part in your business, therefore working with a team that is motivated to deliver the best service possible will bring you extra benefits. Thus, even if there is something wrong with your product/service, having excellent customer service will put your customers at ease. Instead of diminishing their trust in your brand, clients will like you even more for being there when they needed your help.

Start creating a referral program
More than anything, people like rewards. So you can reward the customers and visitors that are recommending your business to their friends and peers. You can give them bonus points for visiting the site, convert the money they spend on a product into points, and offer them extra points if they refer a friend and their friend becomes your client.

Make it impossible for customers and visitors not to refer your brand
You already have a number of people who refer your business, but things are constantly moving forward and you need more and more people to refer your company.

Why not place a “refer button” on your website? Somewhere in sight, so you can see it the minute you land on a page. You can also add social sharing widgets to every product page.

Whatever you choose to do make sure that it is almost impossible for visitors not to refer your business to their online communities.

Give a shareable product experience
You should always find new ways to impress your customers. For example, think about the packaging and unboxing experience. Instead of sending the product in just a regular box, you can add a little sparkle to it.

Find a unique way to box customers’ products. Make it look like a gift and add a thank you note. It’s cheap, but it makes an impact over your client. This way customers feel appreciated and, more importantly, they will want to share the experience with their peers.

Ask customers for reviews
Useful tip: No publicity is bad publicity!

People base their buying decision on online reviews. So you should always encourage your customers to review your business online. Having no reviews is the same as having bad reviews, because it indicates you are not willing to build a relationship with your customers and you are not willing to win the trust of your potential clients.

People do read your business online reviews. It has been shown that people read between 6-10 reviews before making a purchasing decision, this is why is important to make your customer review your brand: the more positive reviews you get, the more your target audience will trust your business!

Influencers: bring them on your side
As much as we trust reviews coming from 3rd parties, it’s always impressive when your brand is recommended by a public person. The practice is being applied by basically all BIG brands in the world. It is true, it may be a bit expensive for your budget right now, but you don’t have to hire the Queen of England to recommend your products. You can choose a famous Youtuber, a blogger, or instagrammer – people who have a large audience and numerous followers.

In a closing note, referral marketing is vital for every business, it is the foundation and the soul of every brand. Make sure to keep an eye on what people are saying about you and always try to find new ways to improve your products/services and eventually your business.

How to Make the Most of Captured Leads

Every business owner’s goal is to attract more customers to their business, grow their profits, and stay on top of the game at all times. What are you doing to be on top of the news every day?

When it comes to the online environment your website is the first contact people have with your business. You want to bring new visitors to your website and those visitors to turn them into your customers.

But what if the visitor never comes back to your website? The thing is that the first impression is vital in every domain. And even though the visitor chooses to be just a visitor at first, you can convince them to return as buyers.

Marketing Automation

Marketing automation is a process created to help you manage and accomplish your marketing tasks in a more effective way. Its purpose is to save you time without damaging the authenticity of your content.

More importantly, marketing automation is designed to help you get more traffic to your website and earn new customers. The tool has an impressive effect on closure stages and conversions. More specifically, marketing automation allows you to take care of your leads in the whole buying process, sending them personalised emails and messages.

Email Marketing

Email marketing contains newsletters, emails to keep in touch with your customers and contacts, transactional emails, and campaign emails.

The purpose of email marketing is to strengthen the relationship you already have with your customers, to bring new customers, recycle the visitors to your website, and boost their trust and keep doing business with you.

Did you know? According to Madison Logic 122 billion emails are sent per hour.

Social Media

Everyone knows the power of social media. Having a profile of your business on social media platforms is vital. With the help of social media you can have your visitors following your business and interacting with it on a whole new level. Some of your follower may not be your customers yet, but by keeping in touch with them you make sure you are always on top of their mind when they decide to make a purchase.

Imagine you are posting news, product/service releases, or sharing something on social media; any of these situations is a different chance for you to recycle visitors back to your website.

Remarketing

Remarketing is the strategy that allows you to show ads to people who have visited your website or used your mobile apps. It is an intelligent and efficient method to recycle your visitors and possibly turn them into your customers.

There are multiple ways on how to use remarketing with Google: standard remarketing, video remarketing, remarketing for mobile apps, dynamic remarketing, and remarketing lists for search ads. You can choose to use one of them… or all of them.

5 easy steps to capture leads effectively

Are you starting to lose some ground in your sales department? Are you trying to turn leads into (returning) customers?

In every business one of the most important goals is to bring more and more customers. You need to keep the business constantly moving. But every goal has its little goals, and every little goal has its even smaller steps. And each of those steps needs to be followed thoroughly so you can get the best results.

The same process is used when you want to turn leads into (returning) customers. It resembles a lot with the construction of a house when, if the foundation is not built strong enough, you might not be able to finish the rest of the house.

So let’s see 5 simple methods to turn website visitors into faithful customers and – why not? – brand ambassadors…

Emails

While email marketing might not be the “prettiest” marketing strategy, it is still one of the most efficient for generating more leads, conducting them through the sales filter, and building a loyal customer base. Through emails you are always in contact with your audience.

There are multiple types of emails that you can send, among the most popular being:

  • promotional – when you announce your latest promos
  • opt-in – when someone subscribes to your newsletter
  • transactional – when someone makes a purchase
  • newsletter – when you are informing your database about your latest blog posts or news release

The important thing is to be careful when creating the emails. Your emails should be persuasive and engaging but not disturbing.

Extra tip: include images, options for sharing, and do not forget about the call to action.

Form Submissions

The forms should be well optimised with auto responder. The main goal of any sales page is to reduce friction as much as possible. Imagine placing all the questions above on a single, long page filled with requests. That’s some serious friction over there! It would definitely chase customers away from the page, affecting your profits…

LiveChat

LiveChat is software that allows your audience to ask live questions, the best part being that you can answer right away. LiveChat is a great opportunity for you to establish a connection with your community.

They can see how involved you are in your customers’ well-being and how much you care about giving them the best experience with your business. It is a great way to see how you are managing their inquiries in real time.

Phone Calls

Maybe some of your website users don’t have the patience to type in long messages or maybe what they need to talk to you about is more complicated.

Having a phone number available on your website makes things so much easier. It also gives them the feeling that you are always available and willing to listen to what they have to say.

Bonus tip: Thanks to the ever-evolving technology like Twilio, now you can rack phone calls to see how many of them are coming from your website!

Sign-Ups

Sign-ups are forms where users leave their personal information such as name and email address so they can keep in touch with your business.

They have already purchased something from your website, but you don’t want them to stop there; you want to turn them into returning customers. So you are using sign-up forms to keep your customers updated about your promotions, your latest releases, and your contests. It makes your community engaged and thus increases the chances of earning a returning customer.

In conclusion, the connection you build with your audience is very important. It is a continuous process and you have to take care of it on a daily basis. And now that you know the secrets of building up customer loyalty, all you need to do is implement the strategies and start reaping the rewards of returning customers!