March 28, 2023
So many times when starting a business, there is a bajillion question that pops into your head and NO ONE gives you a road map of what to do, in what order, and how. WELL, that confusion ends today cause we’re here to make it easy peasy for you.
In today’s episode, we’re going to go through the top 11 things you need to do when you first start a business. We’re covering the more technical business side of things that people so often look over and forget in their haste to start posting on Instagram and Facebook.
Before you brand your whole business or try to get emails or domains that are already taken or trademarked, make sure you do some hefty research to ensure the name is available! Check social handles too!
Google Workspace is our favorite! And if you purchase your own domain name as well (for example “theheartuniversity.com” you can have your email be: “your name@your business name.com” which is a nice professional touch to your client experience!
023: How to Get Legally Legit with Paige Griffith: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/023-how-to-get-legally-legit-with-paige-griffith/id1487265198?i=1000468190236
057: Trademarks, Copyrights, Intellectual Property, DBAs, and Contracts with Rachel Brenke: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/057-trademarks-copyrights-intellectual-property-dbas/id1487265198?i=1000485169169
272: Bookkeeping, Payroll, and Learning to Understand the Finances in Your Business as a Creative Entrepreneur with LoriAnn Kuntz: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/272-bookkeeping-payroll-and-learning-to-understand/id1487265198?i=1000576463316
If you choose to file as an LLC, you’ll need an EIN. If you file as a sole proprietor, you’ll submit your business taxes through your social security number. The Employer Identification Number, also known as the Federal Employer Identification Number or the Federal Tax Identification Number, is a unique nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service to business entities operating in the United States for the purposes of identification. It’s basically like the social security number FOR your business. And you typically need this for a lot of things in addition to paying taxes for your business.
You don’t wanna be doing all business transactions through your personal bank account. Big no-no. Separate things and make your life 10x easier. Start a new business bank account where you have all business expenses come out of, and deposits from getting paid to go into.
This one is HUGE for protecting your butt. If you’re earning even 5 cents from a client or a product, you need to have a contract in place NOW. We highly highly recommend The Legal Paige’s contracts. Go to TheHeartContracts.com for 10% off your purchase!
This is often what people do first before all the previous steps cause it’s the most outward facing, fun, and flashy. But truly if you’re wanting to start a legit business, the previous steps are SO important to set yourself up for success. Remember in step 1 when you decided on your business name and secured your social media handles? So it would be consistent with your biz name. No sarahleephoto10193572039805283. Now is the time to actually set that up and start sharing the work you’ve been creating/making for free.
Having a website that is a foundational hub to share who you are, what you do, and how people can buy your product or work with you is HUGE. Don’t freak out though if you start your business without one. You’ll get there. We HIGHLY recommend Showit as a web platform. And we even have a bunch of Showit website templates in our Heart Shop that give you a freaking custom, branded beautiful website for a literal fraction of the cost it takes to hire a web designer to make you a custom website. When you’re first starting your business, you truly DO NOT need a custom site. You just need to get scrappy and get something up on the internet that clearly communicates who you are and what you do.
We use and HIGHLY recommend Honeybook. In Honeybook you can send invoices, contracts, and questionnaires, save email templates, set up workflows, take easy online payments, send automated payment reminders, and so much more.
In addition to HoneyBook some entrepreneurs also enjoy Dubsado, 17Hats, and others. We’ve both used a couple of the CRMs out there but we LOVE and swear by Honeybook!
This one is obviously photographer-specific, but it’s such a big one to really set up a professional presentation to your business and brand that we wanted to keep it on this list even if it isn’t applicable to everyone!
We both use Pic-Time and we swear by it. It has so many features, customizations, print upsell options, and more. There’s also Pixiset which is another great option!
We promise, though, if you don’t have gallery delivery software as a photographer, this is one small thing you can do that will leave a BIG impact on your clients!
Ep 108 dives deep into WHY you need a niche so we’re not gonna harp on it too much here.
But the bottom line is when you are first starting a business you’re probably trying a variety of things out. Figure out what segment of the market you want to position yourself in, what lights YOU up the most, and what you’re best at. In order to figure out what niche you want to go into with your business, you sometimes gotta try different things out and that’s okay! But eventually, you DO want to hone in and pick something you are KNOWN for. So you can speak to your ideal client clearly and in a way that makes them listen.
Burnout Freebie: www.theheartuniversity.com/burnout
In addition to a FREE 7 day trial, get 50% off your first year of HoneyBook, a $200 value!!
The Heart Courses: www.theheartuniversity.com/courses
Website Templates: www.theheartuniversity.com/website-templates
If you want to connect with us and other listeners in the Heart and Hustle community join our Facebook group here.
PODCAST10 for 10% off anything from The Shop!
WASSUP FRIENDS. We’re Evie + Lindsey, co-founders of this wild partayyy called The Heart University. Our goal is to empower entrepreneurs to kick freaking BUTT in their businesses, dive down into the heart of their why and how, and serve you with all possible tools you’ll need to up-level your business game and CRUSH those goals of yours.
Whether you’re coming to an in-person workshop, joining our online course, or soaking up all the strategies via this blog or our podcast, we’re STOKED you’re here + can’t wait to see you out there kicking butt.
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