If you’re on a shoestring budget and taking a financial leap to establish your company, even everyday running costs can seem astronomical. So it’s reassuring to know that there are affordable options for start-ups and entrepreneurs. Here are our top five ways to help your new business hit the ground running:

1. Home from home

If your business is new or in its infancy, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to splash out on premium office space in a good location. Setting up a business from home has thankfully been made easier - with smart technology, super-fast broadband and the flexibility to work when you want. But when your 4-year-old picks up the phone to a new client or your teenager eats up your download limit, frustrations may get in the way.

Entrepreneurs are now combining the flexibility of home working with the use of a local, managed workspace. This way they can benefit from a dedicated, fully equipped office and meeting space as and when they need it, and escape family distractions for the day.

2. Coffee shop temptation

When you first start out, you’re understandably keen to follow any lead, and research by global workspace provider Regus revealed entrepreneurs would meet just about anywhere to secure a deal. When asked where the strangest places they've ever held a business meeting – the back of an ambulance, a navy warship and a cave were just some of the weird and wonderful answers. Coffee shops could be a tempting meeting spot, but presenting or negotiating while surrounded by talkative shoppers could prove tricky. A survey found 64% of business people would opt to use business centres rather than coffee shops when they need to be professional and productive.

3. First impressions last

When a prospective client contacts you about your product or service, it’s crucial you seize the opportunity and make an impact. The most important call always seems to come when you’re queuing at the bank or boarding a plane for a family holiday. A ‘virtual’ receptionist is an independent contractor and more affordable than a member of staff. The receptionist, who is often multilingual, will answer with your company name and can extend hours of availability so you never miss a business call again. Your clients don’t need to know you’re sitting at your kitchen table, or sunning yourself on the beach!

4. Be sociable

“Social media is to marketing as eye contact is to a handshake,” says social media guru Meg Fowler Tripp. Around 1.1 billion people use Facebook every day and 200 million go on Twitter, according to BuzzFeed. No new business owner would turn their nose up at free marketing, and that’s why so many businesses now recognise the value of social media channels to promote their brand, products or services. But don’t ignore alternative channels like Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube, particularly if your business has a visual aspect.
Secure your place in the den

Even some of today’s most successful entrepreneurs, such James Caan, of Dragon’s Den fame, didn’t start out in their own office space. He, like many other new business owners, opted for a virtual office complete with a virtual address.

This affordable solution is increasingly popular among start-ups, home-based businesses and companies expanding into a new country or region. It eliminates the expense of renting while offering a business presence. Providing you with a local business address and phone number, it’s a convenient stepping-stone to a physical office.

Make further savings with Regus

Regus’ Virtual Office Plus package provides an address at any of the 1,500 centres in their global network. Enjoy 10% off if you book online, plus five days’ use of a private office each month at your chosen virtual location. For more information, visit www.regus.co.uk

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