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  Your business needs funding to remain a going concern. And it certainly requires financing to acquire customers, grow sales, and scale further. But finding this sort of support can be an uphill battle, as lenders often refuse to give credit to smaller outfits; those that do make tough demands of would-be borrowers.
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Thankfully, there are other ways to tie down funding for your enterprise. This article explains the steps you can take to do just that. Here they are:

Come Up with a Great Business Plan

Before you seek funding, you should have a well-structured business plan that outlines your business goals, target audience, marketing strategies, and financial projections. Many lenders will request this document from you, as it will provide the sort of information they need to make a decision about providing you with funding. A good business plan will show investors that you have a clear understanding of your business and its potential for success.

Decide How Much Funding You Need

One thing your business plan should spell out is how much money you need to get your startup off the ground (or what’s needed to scale it). This information will enable you to decide what type of funding to pursue and how much equity you may need to give up to secure it. If the costs concerned are unstable, factor in slight margins of error to cover a possible rise in the price of inputs, equipment, and other resources.

Seek Out Investors

Investors can provide funding in exchange for a percentage of ownership in your business. You may choose to approach angel investors or venture capital firms. Alternatively, you could raise funds through crowdfunding platforms. Look for individuals and organizations that may be interested in your business, and reach out to them with your business plan. There’s plenty of information about such sources on the web.

Join a Business Community

Purpose-built communities like business clubs may offer access to funding opportunities. Note that certain investors and lenders find it easier to validate companies that belong to recognized bodies. If you’re looking for such a body, you should consider joining Club Connect. It’s a community of SMEs, startups and larger businesses which provides its members with access to funding. It makes this possible through partnerships with investors, as well as sources that supply firsthand information about financing opportunities. Find out more about Club Connect HERE.
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Get into an Incubator or Accelerator

Incubators and accelerator programs help startups to speed up their transition to becoming stable and profitable companies. They do this by providing such startups with mentorship, training sessions, technical support, and funding. If your business is in its early stages of growth and you’d like to get it funded, you may apply for a place in an incubator or accelerator.

Participate in Pitch Competitions

Pitch competitions give entrepreneurs a chance to present their business ideas to a panel of judges for a chance to win funding. These competitions can be a great way to get exposure for your business and potentially secure crucial financing.

Leverage Personal Assets

If you have personal savings or assets, you can source cash from them and use it to fund your business. This option can be risky, as there’s no guarantee that you’ll get your money back. But it allows you to maintain complete control over your business. It’s an option for you if you’re wary of surrendering a portion of your enterprise to investors.

Build a Strong Network

Networking with other entrepreneurs and industry experts can help you connect with potential investors or lenders. Attend industry events, join networking groups, and reach out to mentors for advice and guidance. Also, try connecting with potentially valuable contacts online, on platforms like LinkedIn, for instance. You never know who would link you up with a funding source.
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Final Words

Securing funding for your business requires a lot of effort, research, and patience. But when you adopt the right approach to getting the attention of potential lenders or investors, you can increase your chances of getting the funding you need to start or grow your venture. Featured Image Source: UNDP
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This article was first published on 14th May 2023


Ikenna Nwachukwu holds a bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He loves to look at the world through multiple lenses- economic, political, religious and philosophical- and to write about what he observes in a witty, yet reflective style.

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