- Business Plan
Writing a business plan is one of the first moments that your ideas begin to come to life. An important time! No matter the direction you’re going with your business, or the goals you’re trying to achieve; this article will walk you through the stages of getting started.
- Business Budget Sheet
Money talk. You’ll need to stay on top of your budget at all times. Here are a few templates and tools for making sure that you do.
- Business Entity Types
Do you know what type of business entity you are / want to be? If yes – go you! If no – read this!
- Free Invoice Template
The most simple of invoice creators. Don’t waste time attempting to fit everything into one from scratch – everything you need is right here. And it’s pretty to look at, too.
- Finding an Accountant
Time for you to find an accountant? It’s a daunting task – but don’t get overwhelmed. Here’s a checklist to calm your nerves and tell you all that you need to know/do before you take that next, big step.
- Friendly Small Business Apps
If you’re running a business, odds are you’re letting the stress of a thousand things overcome your brain. But your smartphone is your friend. This link holds a wide variety of apps that are here just to help lessen your work burden.
- Competitive Analysis
It’s important to understand what you’re up against in the business world. Find your competitors, understand their strengths and weaknesses, and strategies the best ways to stand out among them.
- Why Logistics Matter
Not everyone’s brain works in favor of logistics. The dreamers want to skip ahead and see their ideas come to life without understanding the behind-the-scenes. Here are a few logistical reminders on selling and tracking your products – cut the mistakes out before you make them.
- Business Proposal Template
You’ve made the connection and impressed your potential client — now it’s time to close the deal! Use this streamlined and interactive business proposal template to help you create a winning proposal.
- Top website tools
The current leader in easy-to-use website design for producing a sleek, interactive and appealing online presence. You don’t have to be a design genius to make a website!
- Do’s & Dont’s
The Do’s & Don’ts. An easy-to-read infographic on the basics of website management. Sure, some of it might seem like common sense. But we all need little reminders like these sometimes.
- Call to Action (tips)
The digital world has made call to action buttons easier than ever. Direct as much traffic as you can with a few pointers on the best practices.
- Startup Business Website Examples
Website design is intimidating. How do you make sure all of your information is present but also appealing enough to draw consumers in? Take some notes from a few startups who understand what aspects make up a good website.
- Homepage Design
Give no consumers the opportunity to walk away. Rock that first impression! Get a little inspiration from a few of the most appealing homepages to better plan your own.
- WordPress Themes & Examples
Clean design templates with themes that can be customized to fit an business needs. If you’re still struggling with ideas – here you can find examples of how the themes have been used as well.
- Tips for Brand Building
The basics. An 11-step guide to discovering exactly who your brand will be and how you can integrate the personality through every aspect of business.
- Designing Business Cards
Many times, business cards are your first impression. No pressure! This article hits on the importance of business cards (if you’re still not convinced), and easy-to-use templates to design your own.
How to Entrepreneur
- Tools & Resources
This covers a wide range of useful resources for any entrepreneurs, freelancers, small business owners, etc. An important tool for anyone just getting started – will help you stay well-rounded in multiple aspects of your business.
- Email Marketing 101
Nobody gets email like MailChimp does. If you’re wanting to try out email marketing – or just interested in reading a bit more on it – this article lists a few benefits as well as walks you through starting your own campaign.
- Tools for Team Collaboration
Collaboration is necessary for the success of your business – and thanks to technological growth, there’s really no excuse for lacking it. A few tools, how to use them, and why/when you should be using them.
- Growth Strategies to Scale Business
Is your business ready to grow? Naturally, you’d like the answer to be yes, but take the time to evaluate first. If it is your time – try out some of the growth strategies listed here!
- Must-Read Blogs for Entrepreneurs
There’s always room to learn more. Whether it’s within your industry, or one you’re looking to branch into – the internet will provide. This is simply a curated list with over 100 educational blog options. You’re bound to find one that can suit any of your entrepreneurial needs.
- Motivating Podcasts for Entrepreneurs
Another curated list. This time: podcasts. A busy day doesn’t always hinder your ability to learn – listen to these while you drive, work, eat lunch, or any other time when multitasking is an option.
- Collaboration Tricks
Forget competition and focus on how you can collaborate. This list hits on different strategies for entrepreneurs to partner with other entrepreneurs and small businesses – all to increase growth.
- Apps for Entrepreneurs
Here’s what we should find if we take a look at your smartphone: the apps that will make your work and home life a little easier. These can help with time management and overall productivity.
How to start a blog
- Getting Started 101
A great “How-To” article for potential bloggers. More than just a read about finding your topic, you’ll find logistical steps as well. She’s also one step ahead of the game with her intermixed FAQ’s answered in each section.
- Getting Started (steps)
If the previous link doesn’t satisfy your potential blogging needs – here’s another take on the steps of getting started. Just as informational of a read, but a slightly different style.
- Internal vs External
Internal vs. External blogging. If you’re having trouble deciding which route you want to take, this might help you better understand which option will work best for you and your business. A good list of pro’s and con’s.
- Keywords & SEO
Don’t make SEO trickier than it needs to be. A guide to understanding what words and phrases will put you on the map, and how to best use them. With a quick tip on how to use Google’s free services to help you out!
- External platform
After you’ve read up on all of the previous articles – go for it! WordPress is one of the leading blog platforms. Use all of the new information to run with your own blog!
- WordPress Themes & Examples (repeat here)
(Here it is again!) If you choose to go with WordPress here are themes, templates and examples on how they’ve been used successfully. Even if you don’t choose WordPress, let this be a good source of creativity and ideas for how your blog could look.
- Monetize Your Blog
You’ve learned how to set up and manage your blog, but now you’re ready to make money with it. Here are five strategies to help monetize your blog. Don’t limit yourself to these five. Find out what best fits your business model and then get creative with it!
- Copywriting Help
Be confident in your writing no matter what it’s for. Let this free tool be your safety net as well a learning opportunity to improve your writing skills overall.
How to take advantage of social media
- Graphics (design)
Who says you need to master Photoshop to create good content? Canva is an excellent tool for creating quick, easy and appealing pieces of content! Graphics, flyers, logos, etc. And on top of it all – it’s completely free!
- Free Vectors (design)
Everyone loves a free vector. Nobody loves a website full of cheesy, distasteful vectors. That’s not what this website is. Find thousands of useful options here!
- Social Media Information Hub
Social Media Examiner is one large hub of useful social media help. A slight focus on Facebook – but tips and tricks for overall social media use as well.
- Creating a Social Media Style Guide
Before you run wild with your social media accounts, it’s smart to develop a style guide to stick with throughout each platform. Consistency is key. Here’s how to make one and what you might want to consider including in your guide.
- Facebook Ads (step by step)
Facebook Ads. They’re a useful opportunity that Facebook has given to marketers (when used correctly). Here’s a step-by-step guide to make sure you’re using ads to their full potential.
- Target Audience Tools
Backtracking to one of your first steps as a business owner or entrepreneur: identifying your target audience. This article lists some powerful & free tools, with the ways you can use them to best understand who you’re trying to reach.
- Instagram for Business
Instagram has brought a relatively new feature to the table: Instagram for Business. Learn how to set up and manage your business profile as well as create a strategic guide for the content your company will be posting.
- Social Media Management
Once you’ve established the voice of your brand and a clear guide of what you’ll be posting on your social accounts, let the power of technology take some of the work out of your hands. Use these tools to automate the posting and engagement process to whatever degree suits your business best.
How to get more clients
- 21 Ways to Bring in the Business
Business can be slow. How do you find new clients? Waiting around isn’t the answer, but this article will provide you with tips and tricks to do just the opposite. Find your clients and “bring in the business”!
- Networking Strategies
Networking is a must-do for entrepreneurs and business owners. Before you dive into the world of networking, or before you go to your next event, take some time to read over these promising strategies for effective networking.
- Networking events
Search eventbrite for any and all upcoming events in your area. This is a particularly convenient way to find networking or industry specific events. Make sure to select “Networking” under event type, and then search your location. Also a good tool finding events when travelling!
- Grow your business
Your guide to every tool (or at least 50) you could possibly need. And they’re all free! They’re listed under a number of categories that are all extremely useful for business owners, no matter the stage of your business.
- Customer Referral Programs
Great examples of real, successful customer referral programs. They’ve listed four simple practices for creating a solid program with tips on how to execute them.
- Word-Of-Mouth Marketing Infographic
Let your customers do the selling for you. Referrals, recommendations, reviews – these are what people trust. This infographic shares useful WOM strategies and how you can be implementing them.
- Perfecting Your Pitch
You’ve heard of the elevator pitch, but have you practiced your own? It’s important that your pitch be well-thought out, clear, and concise. Take some tips to perfect yours.
- Finding Email Addresses for Your Newsletter
We’ve provided some links on email marketing above, but once you’ve created your campaign, you’ll need customers to send it out to. Besides the most natural ways to find email addresses, here are a few creative ways to get people to subscribe to your newsletters and campaigns.
You can find a course (or multiple) on almost any topic you can imagine. Learn new skills or strengthen ones you already have. Try your first month free – our look into group memberships if you have a team.
Their mission is to “spread ideas” and they do it well. An unending variety of topics are covered in their talks. But be careful – it’s a black hole of knowledge that will keep you watching for hours if you let it!
Constantly updated with articles, videos and courses all with the purpose of helping you grow. Levo can also be used to connect with other users for a solid way of local and online networking!
For a monthly fee, Skillshare gives you unlimited access to thousands of instructional courses. Categories range from Business and Entrepreneurship to Film and Writing.
- Thrive Time Show
Focused completely around small business growth. They offer access to free resources as well as a trial period to test out their “business school” lessons. If you find the courses useful, they offer an affordable monthly membership!
- HubSpot Academy
A free certification program. There is a wide range of courses, each of which are useful for any entrepreneur and small business owner. Not all are for certifications – find quick answers, lessons and user guides as well.
Another source of free online courses offered through universities. With these courses, you have the option to pay for your certification upon completion.
- Google Small Business
A visual community for small business owners and entrepreneurs. They provide insights and tips, but mostly upload success stories as a source of inspiration for small business owners. A good site to visit when you need some encouragement!
If you find additional resources that would be helpful for entrepreneurs and freelancers please share them with us at hello@MELDcoworking.com, using the title “Tools: How to Entrepreneur – UPDATE”.
Or simply stop by MELD Coworking, Central Austin’s coworking space for entrepreneurs and freelancers! Subscribe to our email updates to claim your free trial day at MELD, and come see if our space is a good fit for you 🙂