Tag Archives: business development

Do Small Businesses Need Writers?

store employee behind register

Writing is something that, unfortunately, many entrepreneurs do not consider when setting up a budget for their new endeavor. Companies often focus upon the products and services that they will provide to their clients, as well as the team that they are building to support the company’s mission. But rarely do today’s entrepreneurs think about how they will communicate with their target audience and their staff. Clear communication is integral on many fronts, and having a professional writer on hand to ensure the ability to convey ideas in an articulate manner is a wonderful option for small businesses across all industries.

What kind of writer do you need?

Now, having a professional writer compose engaging content for small businesses doesn’t necessarily mean that entrepreneurs need to make room on their payroll for an on-staff writer. Depending upon the growth of the company there may certainly come a time when hiring an in-house writer is a financially prudent decision, but in the beginning entrepreneurs would do well to partner with writers on a project-by-project basis.

What can writers do to help your company grow?

First and foremost, professional writers are able to help small businesses develop a brand identity. Marketing is key in building a new company, and it is essential that today’s entrepreneurs are able to create brands that resonate with their target audiences. Brand identity, content marketing, and traditional marketing tactics are all closely intertwined, although the strategies that writers take will certainly vary depending upon the different goals that initiatives are striving to achieve.

Ultimately, writers can craft the following to help build a company’s image and attract new business:

  • Blog posts
  • Articles
  • Website content
  • Press releases
  • Social media content
  • Newsletters
  • Email marketing pieces
  • Press kits

How can writers help with internal communications?

The majority of work that writers will do for a small business is client facing. This means that most entrepreneurs will focus the majority of writers’ attention on the tasks listed above. But clear communication is also of extreme importance on an internal basis.

The idea here is that a professional writer can help improve productivity, efficiency, and accuracy by crafting documents that will facilitate smoother operations. The following documents can make the day-to-day management of the business easier if they are crafted by a knowledgeable writer:

  • Operations manuals
  • Client contracts
  • Employment contracts
  • Policies and procedures
  • Internal newsletters
  • Memos
  • Emails

How can you choose the right writers for your company?

Picking the right writer is just as important as making the decision to hire one in the first place. Essentially, the writers who work for your business need to understand and believe in its mission and values. Additionally, they need to have experience in their field and the ability to speak effectively to the audience that your company is targeting.

Have any questions about the value of writers in small business settings? Contact Grammar Chic, Inc. by calling 803-831-7444 today or visit www.grammarchic.net to learn more about how a professional writer can help your company.


Filed under Business Writing

How to Write a Business Plan: Mistakes to Avoid

Grammar Chic Inc. Business Plan Blog

There’s no doubt in my mind that starting a new business is an incredible thing.  I have definitely been there and experienced it all when I started Grammar Chic four years ago.  The excitement, the nerves, the feeling that you want to do it all, everything, right now, are definitely things that I went through.  But at the same time, before you get ahead of yourself, there is something very important that you must do: write a business plan.

Sure, sure, you have a winning business idea.  You have thought it all through and now you think that it is time to act on it.

You could be right.  But you might also be overlooking something drastically important, too.  A business plan can help alleviate that risk.

Of course, there’s mixed advice out there and if you Google, “How to write a business plan,” you are provided almost a billion results.  There is advice on how to pen an executive summary, the points that must be covered in a marketing overview and how to come up with projections.  No matter where you get your information on these items, I can tell you that there are some common mistakes that the majority of entrepreneurs make when they are starting their venture.  Read on to find out if you are making any (or all) of these mistakes as you plan for the next step.

Mistake #1: Believing that you don’t need to write a business plan

Yes, the very first mistake many entrepreneurs make is somehow believing that they are the exception and not the rule. Some individuals think that a business plan is only needed if they are actively seeking investment from a bank, venture capital firm or angel investor.  This is an expensive myth.

Writing a business plan provides you the opportunity to get all of your ideas out on paper and evaluate everything thoroughly.  It will give you the chance to see where there might be holes in your operational plan or potential pitfalls in a marketing strategy.  It will also let you see where the upsides and benefits of your business model happen to lie.  Taking the time to write a business plan will allow you to understand your idea’s weaknesses, as well as its strengths, and whether you will be able to overcome any challenges it may present.

Moreover, writing a business plan will also give you the chance to truly realize if there are hurdles that you won’t be able to handle.  Knowing this before you invest in your idea will save you a bunch of headaches in the long run.  The very first business venture I engaged in on my own, also in a niche industry, about a decade ago crashed and burned.  First, I realized too late that I needed a business plan and by the time I got done hashing one together, what should have been obvious to me before beginning the venture was now glaring at me and sneering.  Ultimately, if I would have taken the time to do the business plan, I would have discovered several significant holes in my business model based on funds, operational needs and overall market.  I learned my lesson and didn’t make the same mistake when I was launching Grammar Chic.

Mistake #2: Referencing business features

It’s very common for budding entrepreneurs to think about the features and the benefits of their product or service and talk about them in their business plan.  However, this is a strategy that is akin to the sales guy who walks into a prospect’s office, talks about the bells and whistles, throws a contract down for a signature and then is confused when the prospect walks away.  Ultimately, if you have a great product, but don’t first establish the need or why anyone would care about your product, you are breaking the first rule of sales.  If you can’t establish a need or a prospect’s “pain,” you aren’t going to sell your stuff.

In your business plan, you must answer the all important question of why people would care if your business exists at all.  It is this that drives customer loyalty and inspires a person to look to your product instead of a cheaper competitor.  You have to sell your mission and appeal to the fact that there is a concept missing in the marketplace.  Your business plan is where you first have the opportunity to lay this out and inspire passion and interest in a reader.

Mistake #3: Believing your business plan lives in a vacuum

I get it, you don’t have a crystal ball.  As handy as this would be to any business owner, the fact is that being able to identify what is going to happen in the future is impossible.  However, what is possible is to determine what your company will do when faced with certain scenarios.  Projecting best and worst case scenarios, both in and outside of your control, is an absolutely imperative piece of your business plan.

Of course, that’s just the beginning.

It’s also going to be necessary to look at a competitor, someone in your industry who you might just feel a bit jealous of while you also hold them up on a pedestal.  Take a look at how they have been successful.  How did they deal with recent economic issues?  How have they grown?  What did they do when they were faced with an internal or external crisis? How did they brand themselves? Hone in on what these entrepreneurs did and then create general concepts and apply them to your business.  However, you need to be realistic here.  It’s not going to be sunshine and roses every day.  Being an entrepreneur means getting used to sleepless nights.  You need to present all the good scenarios along with the bad and change your business plan accordingly.  Moreover, update this document regularly.  A business plan is not a one and done type of project.  You should be modifying it with each significant event in your business.

Business plan writing is no joke and any entrepreneur worth their salt should take it seriously.  I can tell you, I have written business plans for myself in my own life as an entrepreneur, in my former corporate life to identify yearly objectives and goals and plan accordingly, as well as for Grammar Chic clients. The individuals who succeed in their ventures are the ones who consider their business plan as one of the founding documents of their organization; they keep it close, edit it and consult with it regularly.

If you are searching for advice regarding a new or existing business plan, I invite you to reach out to the business writers at Grammar Chic.  Call 803-831-7444 or email info@grammarchic.net right now.  Visit Grammar Chic online and follow us on Twitter to receive helpful tips and writing advice.


Filed under Business Writing

Client Spotlight: Kuester Companies

One of my favorite Grammar Chic clients is Kuester Companies—and in particular, their Association Management group. I say this with sincerity, and perhaps just a hint of wonder; to be sure, this isn’t the first thing you’d think of when you think about a literary consultancy and professional writing and editing service like Grammar Chic, Inc. We work with authors, with people who write for a living. What could we possibly have to do with an HOA company like Kuester?

The thing of it is, though, our work isn’t just about words. It’s about ideas, and it’s about facilitating effective communication. Kuester is a company that places a high premium on both of these things; they’re nothing if not loaded with good ideas about property management—ideas meant to provide the best service possible to their many clients—and so it’s pretty easy for us at Grammar Chic, Inc. to help put those ideas into words.

Kuester is at once a big, ambitious, and expanding company, but also one with tight-knit values and a familial sensibility; indeed, it is a family business, and though it is constantly growing, it is still run as such. Kuester provides management services to residential areas—including condominiums, apartment complexes, and neighborhoods—throughout the Carolinas, yet they pride themselves in the value they place on their employees, and on the team spirit they embody. They work with some of the industry’s top talent and collaborate with some of the finest vendors in the area, yet they are adamant about the fact that it’s the customer who comes first, and that, at the end of the day, their job is really just to keep their many communities happy.

Kuester Association Management’s function is to provide a stable, guiding presence for local association managers and also to ensure that the needs of the different community members are being met; as you can imagine, their work lives or dies on their ability to communicate effectively. On that front, Grammar Chic, Inc. is all too happy to help—whether it’s with web content, articles, or blog entries.

Leave a comment

Filed under Client Spotlight, Writing