Being a caregiver can be emotionally rewarding and exhausting at the same time. As an entrepreneur, you have the skills to figure out what is missing in the market for this group, and how you can provide assistance. One should honestly self-assess their skills and in what areas they might require assistance. Consider this simple guide to help you start your business, presented below by The Stroke Recovery Foundation.
Do Your Market Research to Find What They Need
The first step in creating any business is doing market research. The point of this process is to learn more about the industry, including what your competitors offer caregivers and what you can offer that they do not have. You can talk with caregivers, conduct surveys, and visit existing companies. You know your target audience, but you should find out more about them. For example, what are their consumer habits? What is the average gender and age of a caregiver? These are things you can use to better your marketing strategy.
Decide What You Can Provide
Once you have your market research information, you can start thinking about what services you can provide. Is there something many caregivers express that they need? For example, think about ways you can make their jobs or their personal lives easier. Then figure out how you can turn that into a business.
Determine How Are You Going to Attract and Train Staff
Part of this assessment is figuring out how you can manage the business. Understand that this business is a people business. Learn about how a business like this is managed. Just last week in the Wall Street Journal there was an article entitled “Caregiver Turnover Disrupts Households”. The article cited very large staff turnover statistics. Start to consider how you will manage this phenomenon so that you can be successful. Obviously you need competent and reliable staff if you are going to be successful. Perhaps the Stroke Recovery Foundation can assist you in this area as they have experience managing people.
Draft Your Business Plan
Every business needs a strong business plan before making any significant decisions. Research shows that business plans can be anywhere from 10 to 100 pages, but the average is between 30 and 50 pages. The SBA has free guides and outlines for business plans. There is no mandatory number of pages, but there is information every business plan should include. For example, you need an executive summary that covers all the details about the products and services you provide and how they fit into the market. You should also include your plans for funding, financial projections within the next five years, a description of your business structure, and a mention of your plans for sustainability.
Market to Your Target Audience
Before you know anything else, you know who your target audience is for this business. The most efficient and cost-effective way to market directly to them is to use social media. For example, if you want to share details about your services, pricing, discounts, updates, or any other pertinent information, you can create PDF and share it on your company’s Facebook page. This is a much more sustainable option with better reach than emailing or sending mailers. Uploading a PDF to Facebook might be a little tricky, but there are guides and resources online that can help guide you step by step through the process.
Get Some Memorable Business Cards
When you’re starting a business to help caregivers, having a good business card can make all the difference. A great business card will help you get your name out there and give potential clients your contact information. Creating one may seem intimidating at first, but with so many online tools now available, it’s never been easier to create that perfect business card. Free websites have everything available you need to design a unique and professional business card. With simple instructions on how to make a business card, even someone inexperienced in graphic design can whip up something eye-catching. Whether you prefer to go the DIY route or hire someone, don’t underestimate the power of a properly crafted business card.
Make Customer Relations Your Top Priority
Because you are specifically catering your business to caregivers, your customers must always be the top priority. Sometimes that can mean prioritizing customer satisfaction over the bottom line. Start by making the customer experience very personal. Then nurture those relationships. Remember that happy customers refer you to their friends. When you get customers through referrals, you already have a minimally established trust with the new customer. That trust helps you build a relationship faster.
With a strong social media marketing strategy and a good cause, your business helping families — and your business card, for that matter — should catch plenty of traction. Because you have a specific target audience, you can have the chance to build a strong relationship with consumers. By focusing on that relationship, you’ll establish trust in the community and have a great chance to create a lucrative brand and business.
The mission of The Stroke Recovery Foundation is YOUR Stroke success – maximizing stroke recovery with our Life Coaching program targeted at stroke survivors and educating the public about awareness and stroke prevention strategies. Our speakers are available for Corporations, and Community Groups of all kinds. For more information, or to learn how you can donate to our non-profit please email Bobm@StrokeRE.org.
Andrea Needham | eldersday.org
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