Everyone knows that when you have your own small business every dollar counts. We were no different. We knew that in order to make it work for us that we had to get really creative and practical with our budget. Trying to save money was key and still is for us today. Here are a few of the ways we cut costs and saved a little.
Do it yourself. Being able to write your own press releases or designing ads is a great thing and a big time money saver. In our case we couldn’t always afford to hire someone, so we needed to do it ourselves. Whenever we didn’t know how to do something it was easily found in a book at the library or online. Our chamber of commerce also holds information sessions or breakfast meetings to aid with some of these very things. Research, research, research. We got very good about finding ways to help ourselves and in turn save money.
Partnerships and Cross Promoting. We were lucky to know many people who were amazing in areas that we were not. When we could trade services and/or products, we did and still do. We cross-promoted with similar brands, which in turn helped us in acquire new customers and business contacts. Ultimately, our trade/barter/borrow system helped reduce our outgoing cash and gained us new contacts. Win win.
Find a Mentor. Find someone who you admire and respect and that is willing to chat with you regularly about your business. Someone who has experience and has been where you are. We had a few people like this in our lives, which definitely helped when we had some tough decisions to make. It’s always great to have that extra person that won’t tell you what you want to hear but rather what you need to hear. We also believed that the bigger your circle of contacts was, the more chances of opportunity you had. It’s just a numbers game really.
Shop Early, Off-Season or with Coupon Codes. It’s no secret that there’s always items you need to purchase. Very quickly we realized that it was always better to buy multiple items at certain times. Usually when we DIDN’T need them. But that was often when we could get the best price. Another way to get a discount is to sign up for a stores online newsletters which is a great way to learn about upcoming sales and will often feature a coupon code. So if you don’t need something right away and can order online at a discount, then it’s a good way to cut your expenses. It seems these days you can always find things at a reduced rate. You just have to be willing to dig a little.
Ask. Ask. Ask. I say it never hurts to ask. If you want a better rate on something, ask. If you want a bigger discount, ask. Need a little extra time on a project, ask. People may surprise you with what they are willing to do to help you out. People will often ask us, “Well, how did that happen for you guys” or “ How did you get that price on that item,” and it’s always the same answer. We asked for it. You can’t get what you don’t ask for in life, right?
So, you don’t always have to be a finance expert to come up with creative ways to save money. We weren’t. Just take a closer look and I bet you’ll be surprised at how easy it really is!