10 Things To Do Before You Launch a New Business or Project
By George L. Rosario, CEO & Founder at GC Rosario Group
- Conduct Market Research
Market research will tell you if there’s an opportunity to turn your idea into a successful business or organization. It’s a way to gather information about potential clients & to learn about other businesses already operating in your area which helps you find a competitive advantage for your business. Find customers or clients for your business by blending consumer behavior and economic trends to confirm and improve your business idea. It’s crucial to understand your consumer base from the outset.
GC Rosario Group professionals will conduct market research to answer the following questions:
- Demand: Is there a desire for your product or service?
- Market size: How many people would be interested in your offering?
- Economic indicators: What is the income range and employment rate?
- Location: Where do your customers live and where can your business reach?
- Market saturation: How many similar options are already available to consumers?
- Pricing: What do potential customers pay for these alternatives?
Here are a few methods you can use to do direct research:
- Focus groups
- In-depth interviews
No worries on how to accomplish this. Our research team at GC Rosario Group has the experience and the ability to get this done with no headaches or stress to you. Hire our professionals to manage this stressful part of the planning and pre-launch process.
2. Write Your Business Plan
Your business plan is the foundation of your business. It’s a roadmap for how to structure, run, and grow your new business. You’ll use it to convince people that working with you, for you, or investing in your company is a smart choice. It is the foundation of your business. It guides you through each stage of starting, managing and even expanding your business. It will help you structure, run, and grow your new business. It can help you get funding or bring on new business partners. Investors want to feel confident they’ll see a return on their investment. Your business plan is the tool you’ll use to convince people that working with you — or investing in your company — is a smart choice.
Don’t know where to get started? No problem. Our team at GC Rosario Group will walk you through the process and help you set the right goals for your business. We will help you build your business plan before you build your business so that your business will be built on a firm foundation.
3. Fund Your Business
Your business plan will help you figure out how much money you’ll need to start your business. If you don’t have that amount on hand, you’ll need to either raise or borrow the capital. Fortunately, there are more ways than ever to find the capital you need. It costs money to start a business. Funding your business is one of the first and most important financial choices most business owners make. How you choose to fund your business could affect how you structure and run your business. Every business has different needs, and no financial solution is one-size-fits-all. Your personal financial situation and vision for your business will shape the financial future of your business.
At GC Rosario Group, we can help you figure out what those financial needs are, how much you will need to meet those needs, and where you can find the funds to accomplish this task.
4. Pick Your Business Location
Your business location is one of the most important decisions you’ll make. Whether you’re setting up a brick-and-mortar business or launching an online store, the choices you make could affect your taxes, legal requirements, and revenue. You’ll need to register your business, pay taxes, and get licenses and permits in the place you choose to locate your business. Where you locate your business depends in part on the location of your target market, business partners, and your personal preferences. In addition, you should consider the costs, benefits, and restrictions of different government agencies.
Having worked with many online and brick-and-mortar (physical) businesses and organizations, the professionals at GC Rosario Group will help you figure out which location works best with your business plan and the available funding. That may sound complicated, but we’ve learned to make it as simple as possible to ensure that you do not make the mistake of opening today only to shut down in the near future.
5. Choose A Business Structure
The legal structure you choose for your business will impact your business registration requirements, how much you pay in taxes, and your personal liability. The business structure you choose influences everything from day-to-day operations, to taxes and how much of your personal assets are at risk. You should choose a business structure that gives you the right balance of legal protections and benefits. Your business structure affects how much you pay in taxes, your ability to raise money, the paperwork you need to file, and your personal liability.
Which one is right for you?
- Sole Proprietorship
- Limited Partnership
- Limited Liability Company (LLC)
- Nonprofit Organization
We are GC Rosario Group LLC. This was the best entity for us and our vision. Does that mean that you should be an LLC? Or should you organize your business as a C-Corp, S-Corp, B-Corp, Partnership, Sole Proprietorship, Cooperative or Nonprofit Organization? I don’t know. Let’s talk about it.
6. Choose Your Business Name
It’s not easy to pick the perfect name. You’ll want one that reflects your brand and captures your spirit. You’ll also want to make sure your business name isn’t already being used by someone else. You can find the right business name with creativity and market research. You’ll want to choose a business name that reflects your brand identity and doesn’t clash with the types of goods and services you offer. Once you settle on a name you like, you need to protect it. There are four different ways to register your business name. Each way of registering your name serves a different purpose, and some may be legally required depending on your business structure and location. Entity name protects you at a state level. Trademark protects you at a federal level. Doing business as (DBA) doesn’t give legal protection, but it might be legally required. Domain name protects your business website address.
Want to know how we chose GC Rosario Group? George & Claudia Rosario put it all together and then we brought a group of professionals together to make this a strong team. G (George) + C (Claudia) + Rosario (founders’ last name) + Group (because we didn’t do it alone). What name will tell your story?
7. Register Your Business
Once you’ve picked the perfect business name, it’s time to make it legal and protect your brand. If you’re doing business under a name different than your own, you’ll need to register with the federal government, and maybe your state government, too. Register your business to make it a distinct legal entity. How and where you need to register depends on your business structure and business location.
This is a simple step, but a crucial one. I would explain how to do this, but I’ll let the legal team at GC Rosario Group do what they do best.
8. Get Federal and State IDs
You’ll use your employer identification number (EIN) for important steps to start and grow your business, like opening a bank account and paying taxes. It’s like a social security number for your business. Some — but not all — states require you to get a tax ID as well. These numbers let your small business pay state and federal taxes. Don’t play games with your business’ taxes. It’s very important to do the right thing right from the beginning.
How important is this? A California man was sentenced today to 18 months in prison for employment tax crimes. According to court documents and statements made in court, Michael Todd Lucas controlled TradeMotion Inc. Barry Rene Isaacs, the founder, owner, CEO and president of the non-profit, allegedly caused Hope 4 Change to spend thousands of dollars for clothing, massages, beauty care, travel and personal vehicles for Isaacs and his family instead of paying taxes. Todd Kozel, the co-founder and former CEO of London-based petroleum company with operations in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq was sentenced to 60 months in prison for failure to file tax returns causing over $20 million in losses to the U.S. Treasury!
Scared yet? Don’t be. Most businesses never even face a government audit if they are organized correctly. So let our pros at GC Rosario Group walk you through the process. Let’s talk about it.
9. Apply For Licenses and Permits
Keep your business running smoothly by staying legally compliant. The licenses and permits you need for your business will vary by industry, state, location, and other factors.
Again, not a topic for me to discuss. A smart business professional learn to stay in his lane when approaching any task. Legal matters are matters for our legal team at GC Rosario Group to handle.
10. Open a Business Bank Account
A small business checking account can help you handle legal, tax, and day-to-day issues. Open a business account when you’re ready to start accepting or spending money as your business. A business bank account helps you stay legally compliant and protected. It also provides benefits to your customers and employees.
Do not fail to do this before you accept any payment or spend any money through your business. Depending on your business structure, there may be different accounts to set up for different tasks. Have you ever heard of commingling? Neither have many of our clients before they come to us. Let our team at GC Rosario Group can help you set things up right.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
George L. Rosario is a Brooklyn NY born & raised businessman & entrepreneur turned consultant. He started GC Rosario Group with his lovely wife Claudia. With over 30 years of service to the marketplace in NYC, George has relocated and been graciously adopted by the business community of South Florida. He now travels the country helping businesses and organizations thrive in today’s noisy environment. The post-Covid era forced many to close their doors, but also opened new doors of opportunity, growth and prosperity for innovative thinkers. George & Claudia Rosario help companies, businesses, organizations and teams develop the necessary skillset and plan of action to not just survive, but thrive in this new world. GC Rosario Group helps both secular and Christian based institutions meet their goals.