Starting a business in our own communities can be rewarding and challenging but it is Achievable. Time after time, we see other races come into our communities and successfully open and manage their businesses. We can do the same things. Growing up, I watched my parents put their minds together and develop a successful chain of daycare centers. With the right amount of dedication,they were able to make a difference in the way children were taught in Early Childhood facilities throughout the Inner City Baltimore Area.I found their techniques to be beneficial to other business owners sprouting in the Black Community.
1.Provide Excellent Customer Service
Customers like to feel like they are getting their “money’s worth.” If you do your best to reasonably achieve customer satisfaction, you can almost guarantee that your guest will return.Be on time, respond promptly to request, email,and customer inquiries.Be organized and make sure your demeanor inviting and pleasant.Suggest that customers fill out a Satisfaction Survey so that you can learn what you can improve on and some of the things that you are doing right.
Promoting your business is how you “Get Out There”. Each summer,my parents made sure that I used my technical skills to help them promote the family business.I made flyers and posted them on community bulletin boards, bus stops and recently social media, sent postcards, sent emails and the like. My friends who are hair stylists made sure to post every bomb style they could on Instagram, Facebook, and twitter.This grew their fan base and in no-time clients were bombarding their DMs.
3.Provide a Unique Service
When my parents first started their business ,they offer a couple services that other centers in the area lacked.They provided Free Transportation and Overnight Child Care.By doing this, they were able to gain a new community of clients.Some customers like to try new things or need additional services .By catering to the needs of society, you should be able to offer something additional that can’t find anywhere else.
As a small business owner,you should already know that it “Takes money to make money.” By offering promotions,you will attract new customer.Promotions allow clients to test your products or services without fully devoting time and/or money.When offering promotions ,provide these customers the same customer service that you would provide someone that was paying full price.Use this time to educate clients about the other services and/or products that you provide.
5.Maintain Relationships with Pre-Existing Customers
They have supported you from the very beginning and may have been the driving force behind you even starting you business.Remember to keep in touch with these clients and let them know how much you really appreciate their services.It is good to maintain an email list and/or customer loyalty program .
6.Sign Up for Community Vending Events & Trade Shows
In the black community ,we are known for our block parties and events.Often at these events,the host will put out a public service announcement calling for community vendors.This is your time to shine and put you services on display. Be sure to check,your community boards, social media, and local establishments for these posts. At these event bring signature shirts, pens, or other novelty items. to pass out.
7..Stay In Touch with Trends & Changes
By keeping up with the latest trends, you can profit from being flexible.For example, when the Queen Bee, Beyonce’ first came out with her video for Formation off of her album Lemonade, clients rushed to the salons to get “that look.” Salons who did not usually need to have a braider , now needed one. Braiders made a fortune replicating this look, and clients were willing to pay.Be flexible.
8.Build a Website
Now a days, most established businesses have websites.Customers would like to be able to Google Search your Brand or Establishment.This makes researching your business a little more convenient. You can create your own at Wix.com, WordPress, and many other website building sites at an affordable price.Your website should contain :
- Your Contact Information
- Your Services/Products(with prices)
- Gallery (With waterstamped photos of your work)
- Your Business Address