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How to be a successful COVID-preneur as the pandemic winds down

Thinking of starting a business as COVID restrictions ease up and the country becomes more comfortable with the new post-COVID norm? Here are some top tips for becoming a successful “COVID-preneur” from Cameron Ward, Founder of Biz Wealth Builder.

If you’ve never heard of the term “COVID-preneur,” it is easy to quickly piece together its meaning. This is the term used for individuals who have boldly decided to open a business while the COVID-19 pandemic continues. There have been numerous success stories of brave entrepreneurs starting small businesses during the pandemic to meet COVID-related needs, such as new face mask companies or online yoga classes.

But as restrictions ease, and the government’s 2021 Federal Budget puts business at the forefront of its economic recovery plans, even more COVID-preneurs are emerging from the rubble. Here are the top tips for 2021 entrepreneurs to overcome pandemic-related obstacles while charging ahead with their new small businesses.

New business ideas for 2021: Solve genuine problems that people are facing due to the pandemic

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One way to set your new business apart from the rest is to find ways that you can meet today’s unique challenges and demands. Not only will this help you stand out, but it will, more importantly, solve genuine problems that people are facing due to COVID.

This strategy is broad, and it will look entirely different across industries. For example, if you are opening a baked goods business, consider selling your items in a way that will genuinely make people feel safe about the products they are purchasing. Talk about your safety protocols — including mask-wearing and extra sanitization — in your marketing materials. Alternatively, if your business will be hosting events, consider ways that you can make it easier and safer for people to attend. Approach everything you do through the lens of solving today’s new challenges and demands.

Create an eye-catching, effective website

Now more than ever, having an eye-catching and easy-to-use website for your business is crucial. The 2021 Federal Budget includes $1.2 billion for the country’s digital economy strategy and offers loads of financial incentives for small businesses to digitalised their operations, products and services at reduced rates. 

With people still avoiding going out of their hometowns or interstate more than usual, make it easy for customers to still do business with you in a digital space. Your website should concisely and clearly describe your company, and provide easy access to your services or products. It should also have stunning graphics, and be designed in a user-friendly layout. If you’re opening a new fair trade mobile coffee kart business, why not open an e-commerce platform to sell your wholesale coffee at the same time?

Since most new entrepreneurs lack the skill set needed to create a website that fits these criteria, it is best to outsource this task. Yes, you could go the DIY route, but professional work will yield professional results. Even better, they’re a lot of web designers and graphic designers looking for freelance opportunities right now due to the pandemic. So you can support your local creatives and secure a good rate for their professional web and graphic design work.

Rather than forking over a lot of your working capital for an agency, explore reputable online job boards to find the web design help you need. The right designer will be able to provide a project timeline, meet your budget, and offer a portfolio of past work. 

Offer a mix of in-person and digital experiences

If applicable, consider offering a mix of in-person and digital events opportunities for your customers. Right now, there are both people who are ready to get out and about, and those who still need to exercise extra caution by minimizing public interactions. By providing your customers or clients with events and experiences that suit their current needs and desires, you can attract maximum sales.

For example, if you make your own jewelry, consider setting up a booth at a local artisan fair as well as hosting an online sales event on social media.

Keep the tone of your branding positive

COVID restrictions are mostly lifted, but the pandemic lives at the back of every consumer’s mind. Many individuals are still experiencing mental health challenges, such as increased anxiety, that have been caused or exacerbated by the pandemic. In all of your branding and marketing messages, keep your tone positive and upbeat. It is what most people are desperately craving, and is just one more way you can serve your customer base.

Launching a new business in the midst of a pandemic takes bravery, confidence, and skill. When following the above tips, you will be far more likely to create a business model that thrives in the long term.

Contributing writer: Cameron Ward, Founder of Biz Wealth Builder

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