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Blog - Page 7 of 9 - Starting a Business in Ireland | Help for Ireland's Entrepreneurs | Start Up Your Own Business

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Why do we choose one brand over another? Brand loyalty is not a mental act, but an emotional one, and brand loyal customers have an emotional relationship with the brands they’re faithful to. And like Woody Allen explained in Annie Hall, “A relationship, I think, is like a shark. It has to constantly move forward or it dies.” The challenge for many brands is how to spark that emotional relationship and then keep it going. How does a brand get that first date and turn it into a long, happy marriage? Here are eight steps to creating a successful brand-consumer relationship online. Determine your type. In today’s social media age,

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Back in the old days, when the primary form of networking was face to face, there were simple, universal standards that people used to judge you. Now, in the age of online networking, there is another set of rules, and not being aware of them can close you off from valuable opportunities. For in-person networking, the rules are pretty much common sense. If you smell funky, dress sloppy, have bad breath or are unfriendly, you won’t do very well at a networking event. Fortunately, there is a ton of information, from books to full courses, on how to be a good networker, so there really is no excuse for making

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By any definition, Beyoncé is a superstar entertainer, so it’s hard to believe that she would release an album without any fanfare or advance warning. But that’s exactly what she did when she dropped her fifth solo album, a “visual album” of 14 original songs and 17 music videos. What can you take away from this move? The importance of connecting directly with your fans — and for “fans” you can substitute clients, customers or what you will. “I didn’t want to release my music the way I’ve done it,” the singer said in a statement. “There’s so much that gets between the music, the artist and the fans. I

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1. Not making the deal clear with co-founders You absolutely have to agree with your co-founders early on what the deal is among you. Not doing so can cause enormous problems later (see, for example, the Zuckerberg/Winklevoss Facebook litigation). In a way, think of the founder agreement as a form of “pre-nuptial agreement.” Here are the key deal terms you need to address in some kind of written founder agreement: Who gets what percentage of the company? Is the percentage ownership subject to vesting based on continued participation in the business? What are the roles and responsibilities of the founders? If one founder leaves, does the company or the other

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Jennifer Berrent, a partner at the New York office of legal firm WilmerHale, says the three most common mistakes ‘treps make in the early stages are failing to adequately protect their intellectual property (IP), not formalizing the equity arrangements among founders and inaction or haste in choosing the right structure for their business. Berrent held court on how to avoid common pitfalls. How can entrepreneurs protect their IP early on? Before you form an entity, people are chatting; they might be at their current job, maybe they spend a couple of hours collaborating. And there’s a question when you are going to develop a business around that: Who owns that

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1. Watch Out for Your Advice When I first started speaking professionally and coaching individuals, I never thought that I needed special insurance. It is rare, but I have seen some people take advantage of well-intended “advice” by claiming it destroyed their life and then suing the communicator. If you are in the business of providing advice, look into getting some liability insurance. 2. Consider Vesting Your Equity Over Time It is extremely difficult to find the right co-founders for your business. You need to have a similar work ethic and timeline for the investment, your chemistry has to match, and you have to make sound decisions for the company.

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In the majority of cases, start-up success or failure is all about knowing the both the how and the why of taking action, and always being clear about which steps to take next. To help this process, here are 10 essential things you need to know about running a successful business. Use it as a checklist to make sure your thinking and your business plan are on the right track, or if you need to get more information, strategic education or clarity for yourself on your overall vision, your market, or your product or service. 1. General Liability Insurance Every business, even if home-based, needs to have liability insurance. The

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It’s no secret that many, if not most, new small businesses and start-ups are home-based. The days when a “virtual office” sounded new and hip are long past, and it’s practically expected that new enterprises begin as home-based businesses. It’s a great way to save money while engineering those critical first operations and gaining traction in sales. But is there a difference in insurance for home-based businesses vs. commercial office space? You may believe that renters’ or homeowners’ insurance policies cover home businesses, but they may not – which means that if there’s a fire at your home and it consumes your home office it’s possible none of those office

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After coming up with an idea for a smartphone-application business in mid-2012, Josh Lee started building it on nights and weekends, in part because quitting his sales job at a technology firm would have meant losing his employer-sponsored health benefits. Mr. Lee, of New Holland, Pa., suffers from occasional severe headaches called clusters, and his wife depended on the coverage, too. He says he was worried that the cost of health insurance would be out of their reach and he wasn’t sure if his business idea would work. But six months later, Mr. Lee’s employer handed him walking papers and he found himself having to purchase a health plan on

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Entrepreneurs who have developed a successful business often wonder if they should franchise as a way to expand their operations. Like any business model, franchising has its benefits and drawbacks. There’s no way to know for sure whether franchising is right for your company until you evaluate its pros and cons in the context of your operations. That usually requires the help of a franchise attorney or consultant, but before you start talking to the experts, you should get a sense of the key advantages and disadvantages. Franchising offers three major benefits to business owners seeking to expand operations: 1. Access to better talent. Franchising is a great way to

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